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Neymar’s PSG beaten by lowly Strasbourg

Newly-promoted Strasbourg stunned Neymar’s
Paris Saint-Germain 2-1 on Saturday to inflict
the first defeat of the season on the runaway
Ligue 1 leaders.

The exhausted Strasbourg players charged over
to their gobsmacked fans at the final whistle of
a breathless encounter which saw the lowly
hosts hold off a bombardment from their all-star
guests that lasted right to the end of the nine
minutes of stoppage time.

Stephane Bahoken downed PSG, who travel to
Bayern Munich on Tuesday, with a bullet finish in
the 65th minute to drag the lowly home side
away from relegation trouble and up to 14th.

His goal also gave Marseille the chance to close
the 10-point gap between Rudi Garcia’s in-form
side and PSG when they face Montpellier on
Sunday.

“We missed out tonight. We created chances but
we weren’t able to convert them. We conceded
two silly goals, we lacked a bit of concentration,”
PSG defender Marquinhos told Canal+.

“We will learn from this. We have a very
important match coming up and we need to think
about that already.”

Striker Bahoken struck just as Unai Emery’s side
looked primed to snatch the three points, with
Kylian Mbappe equalising Nuno Da Costa’s 13th-
minute headed opener three minutes before the
break and PSG piling on the pressure.

But with PSG camped in Strasbourg’s half and
the rested Edinson Cavani readying himself to
come on to push for the win, Bahoken raced onto
Da Costa’s flick-on and thumped his winner past
Alphonse Areola to consign PSG to their first
defeat in all competitions since April.

Dominant but wasteful PSG had two gilt-edged
chances just before Mbappe eventually
equalised, and both were fluffed by Angel Di
Maria in the space of two minutes.

First the Argentine sliced wide from a tight angle
in the 39th minute after racing onto Neymar’s
precision through-ball, then he shot straight at
Bingourou Kamara when fed neatly by his
countryman Javier Pastore.
Pastore thought he’d given PSG a deserved lead
just before the break when he spun on Mbappe’s
cross and drilled a hard low shot that flashed
past Kamara but crashed off the post and back
into the beaten keeper’s arms.
PSG continued to press for the winner
throughout the second half but Bahoken struck in
a lightning breakaway attack, and Strasbourg
shut up shop for the final 25 minutes.

They kept the away side at bay in a frantic final
flurry that saw substitute keeper Alexandre
Oukidja save the points with seconds remaining,
tipping away Cavani’s header just as the
Uruguayan looked certain to snatch what would
have been a heartbreaking point.

Categories
Africa Football News

I see Eagles progressing – onigbede

Former Super Eagles coach, Adegboye
Onigbinde has backed the national team to
reach the final of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in
Russia.

The veteran coach who led the Eagles to the
2002 edition in Korea/Japan however, argued
that all the necessary preparations must be
made and organisation perfect.

“I said this a few months ago and some people
thought it was a joke,” Onigbinde told
Channels TV
“It’s possible, let’s prepare for the World Cup
and Nigeria can win the World Cup.”

He claimed that the Eagles could have made it
to the final in 2002, but for the squabbles in
the team.

“There was nothing stopping us from winning
the World Cup (in 2002), but for internal
problems in my team.

“If we had drawn with Argentina and beaten
Sweden, we would have qualified for the next
round and we could have gone all the way to
win the World Cup.”

“The attitude of some of the players made me
to overhaul the team after we lost to both
Argentina and Sweden and we drew with
England in our final group game,” he recalled.

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Europe Football International News

Manchester united thrashes Arsenal at Emirates

Arsenal’s hopes of fighting for the
Premier League title this season have
been decimated after losing 1-3 at home
to bitter rivals Manchester United on
Saturday, December 2.

United produced superb performance at
the Emirates Stadium scoring their first
goal in the 4th minute through Antonio
Valencia who was assisted by
Frenchman Paul Pogba.
Chilean striker Alexis Sanchez had a big
chance to level terms for the Gunners
when he was set up by Aaron Ramsey,
but Manchester United goalie David De
Gea denied him.

Englishman Jesse Lingard scored the
second goal for Manchester United in
the 11th minute and it was Anthony
Martial that assisted him.
Arsenal however failed to produce any
good chance for them to score as both
teams went to the break with the
visitors leading.

On resumption, Arsenal changed their
style of play, and it paid off in the 49th
minute when Aaron Ramsey supplied a
wonderful pass for Alexandre Lacazette
to score.

Arsenal fans were expecting their
players to score another goal, but
Frenchman Paul Pogba broke their
hearts as he created another chance for
Jesse Lingard to score in the 63rd
minute for Manchester United to win
3-1.

The French man was sent off minutes
later for a tackle on Bellerin but Man
United held on for a big victory.

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Europe Football International News

Onyekuru fires Anderlecht to Victory

The on-loan Everton forward ended a four-
game goalless run to help his side cart away
with maximum points from the
Daknamstadion
Henry Onyekuru got the matchwinner as
Anderlecht secured a 2-1 away victory over
Lokeren in Saturday’s Belgian Pro League
encounter.

The youngster continued in his left wing-back
role against Peter Maes’ men and was on
hand to deliver the crucial goal – his eight in
the league this season – to win the tie for the
Purple and White.

In the 17th minute, Pieter Gerkens gave the
visitors the lead before Ari Skulason’s goal
from the penalty spot drew the hosts
levelled.
The first half ended with both sides tied 1-1
but in the 52nd minute, Onyekuru popped up
with the winner after benefitting from
Algeria’s Sofiane Hanni assist.

The 20-year-old has now featured in 16
league games this season, mainly as a wing-
back, and has a laudable return of eight
goals.
Anderlecht who secured their 10th league
win of the season are third in the Belgian
top-flight log after gathering 34 points from
17 games.

In their next encounter, the Constant Vanden
Stock Stadium outfit travel to Scotland to
take on Celtic in Tuesday’s crucial Uefa
Champions League action.
With PSG and Bayern Munich already through
to the knockout phase of the competition,
Hein Vanhaezebrouck’s side face an uphill
battle against the Bhoys – placed third on
three points with a superior goal difference –
for a consolatory Europa League slot.

Categories
Europe Football International News

Wenger v Mourinho — origins of a blood feud

When Arsenal face Manchester United in a
crucial Premier League clash on Saturday, the
antics of the two sworn enemies on the
touchline will take up as much attention as the
actual match.
It was ever thus when Arsenal boss Arsene
Wenger and United manager Jose Mourinho lock
horns.

The acrimony between Wenger and Mourinho
stretches back to the arrival of the Portuguese
coach in England 13 years ago.
Verbal volleys have been traded time and again,
with the enmity once boiling over into a
memorable mid-match bout of shoving.
Even now, with Wenger 68, and Mourinho 54,
neither boss seems ready to act their age.

Why do the old foes hate each other so much?
Here AFP Sports looks back at the roots of the
rivalry and recalls some of their more
spectacular battles:
When Mourinho joined Chelsea in 2004, his brash
personality didn’t take long to ruffle Wenger, who
as one of the game’s established force, didn’t
take kindly to being threatened by the young
upstart.

While Mourinho adopted a deferential attitude
around Manchester United boss Alex Ferguson,
there would be no such respect shown to
Wenger.

When Wenger took a shot at Chelsea by claiming
they might have lost belief after a couple of poor
results in 2005-06 season, Mourinho went on the
offensive with a memorable, if unkind, description
of the Arsenal manager.

“I think he is one of these people who is a
voyeur. He likes to watch other people,” he said.

“There are some guys who, when they are at
home, they have a big telescope to see what
happens in other families. He speaks and speaks
and speaks about Chelsea.”

The saying goes that opposites attract, but the
contrast between the urbane Wenger and the
spiky Mourinho couldn’t be more obvious and
neither has been willing to end the cold war.
The differences between the rivals’ approach to
their careers are striking.

Former Real Madrid, Inter Milan and Porto coach
Mourinho has never lasted more than three years
anywhere, while Wenger is in the 21st year of his
Arsenal reign.

Wenger took a holistic approach to his root and
branch rebuild of Arsenal and has produced
some of the most eye-catching teams in English
football history, but when results suffered his
stubborn refusal to tinker with his purist
principles was costly.

Mourinho prefers to shock and awe, hammering
away at perceived threats both inside and
outside his clubs until they bend to his will — the
results have been remarkable but on occasions
his acerbic tongue has proved his downfall when
players start to tune him out.

Three words delivered in typically witheringly
fashion by Mourinho struck at the heart of
Wenger’s weakness in February 2014.

Arsenal had gone eight years without a trophy
under Wenger at the point, while Mourinho was
back at Chelsea having hoovered up silverware
across the world.

In a pointed jibe at Mourinho, the Gunners chief
claimed Premier League bosses were playing
down their title chances because they “fear to
fail”.
Mourinho came back with all guns blazing,
saying: “He is a specialist in failure, I’m not.

“The reality is he’s a specialist because, eight
years without a piece of silverware, that’s failure.
If I did that in Chelsea I’d leave London and not
come back.”

Furious after Chelsea defender Gary Cahill’s ugly
tackle on Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez in the first
half of a spiteful London derby, Wenger came
out of his technical area to remonstrate with
referee Martin Atkinson.

Mourinho didn’t miss the chance to have his say
and Wenger responded with a shove in the chest
of his rival, who stumbled before regaining his
balance and pointing to tell the Frenchman to
get back to the bench.

The pair clashed again seconds later with the
fourth official Jonathan Moss stepping in to
separate them.

With Chelsea winning the October 2014 meeting
2-0 to inflict the Gunners’ first league defeat of
the season, it was no surprise there was no
handshake between the bosses at full-time.

Categories
Africa International News

Russia 2018:Reasons will Super Eagles qualify from Group D

The Super Eagles have been given Lionel
Messi’s Argentine team for the umpteenth
time, this will be the third consecutive time
Nigeria will be in the same group with the
South Americans.

The other two teams in Nigeria’s group
are debutants Iceland and European
side Croatia.

We take a look at five reasons why
Nigeria should progress from the group.

1. We are facing a familiar foe in Russia

Nigeria and Argentina were grouped
together in South Africa 2010 and Brazil
2014 and as a matter of fact Nigeria
have only avoided the South Americans
once in their last five world cups and
that was in France 98.

The Super Eagles defeated Sampoli’s
men in a friendly match in Kransdor
Russia 4-2 and Rohr’s men can draw
inspiration from that game when they
come up against Argentina at the World
Cup.

2. Hunger and the desire of a young Super
Eagles squad

Motivation can be defined as the drive
that pushes a group of people or
individual to attain a particular goal or
stated objectives. In this case most of the
current Super Eagles players are young
and have not played at the biggest stage
of football which is the World Cup and
to most of them it is that driving force
that makes them want to “die on the
pitch”.

We must recall that in 1998 Jay Jay
Okocha oozed quality and that earned
him a big money move to French side
Paris Saint Germain.

3. Nigeria is the second most experience
team in the group

Besides Argentina, the Super Eagles
have more World Cup experience than
Iceland and Croatia. Our experienced
players like John Mikel Obi can help
galvanise the young Nigerian troops.

4. Gernot Rohr’s technical know-how

The German tactician has shown since
his arrival that he is a tactical genius,
and he proved it throughout the World
Cup qualifiers for the Eagles and also in
the frendly match against a strong
Argentine team.

Categories
Africa Football International News

Russia 2018: I am Scared of Argentina and Iceland- Rohr

Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr believes Nigeria’s game against Argentina at the Russia 2018 World Cup will be a different ball game from the 4-2 friendly win against the South American side.

According to him, Argentina now
understands how his team plays as
against when Jorge Sampaoli’s men were surprisingly beaten 4-2 by Nigeria in friendly last month.

Nigeria have been drawn in Group D at the World Cup alongside Argentina,Iceland and Croatia.

The Super Eagles start their campaign against Croatia before their facing Iceland and Argentina subsequently.
And according to Rohr, Group D is filled with good teams.

However, the German tactician has
called for quality friendly games for his team, before the World Cup starts in June 2018.

Reacting after the World cup draw was held, Rohr said: “We have good teams in our group and we have three teams supposed to be better than us because they are higher in the FIFA ranking.

“We have to prepare well before our first game against Croatia as it would be interesting to have good friendlies. We know that Argentina is a very good team but we know them a little bit but now
they know how we are playing too.

They will also be playing with Messi this time.
“Iceland is also a very good team and they are very physical. They have the best fans in Europe. But I believe our last game against Argentina in the group will
be the final for qualification.”

Nigeria’s Super Eagles for the fifth time will be playing Argentina at the 2018 World cup in Russia.

Recall that Nigeria had played against Argentina at the 1994, 2002, 2010 and 2014 World Cup editions, with the South American getting the better of the African nation on all four occasions.

But this time, Gernot Rohr’s men will be seeking revenge against the Argentine team, as they will also compete against Croatia and Iceland in Group D.

Categories
Football International News

Nigeria to play Argentina again Russia

Nigeria to play Argentina in Russia 2018 world cup for the third time in a row.

Here is the full draw

Group A
Russia, saudi arabia, egypt and uruguay

GroupB:
portugal, spain, morrocco and iran

GroupC:
france, australia, peru and denmark

GroupD:
argentina, iceland, croatia and Nigeria

GroupE:
brazil, switzerland, costarica.and serbia

GroupF:
Germany, mexico and korea republic

GroupG:
belgium, panama, tunisia and England

GroupH:
poland, senegal, Colombia and japan

Categories
Africa Football International News

World Cup jersey will be ready by February

The specially designed kits by Nike the Super Eagles will wear at the 2018 World Cup in Russia will be ready by February, officials have disclosed.

This means the Eagles will launch these new kits in March, when they are expected to play two top warm-up games preparatory to the
World Cup.

Those who have come across “leaked” photos of the new kit say it is v-necked and resembles the jersey the Eagles wore when
they lost 1-0 to England at Wembley in November 1995.

“The fans will love them,” said another person who has seen the approved designs.

“The aura of the Golden Generation has been captured by the designs and hopefully that will help the Eagles to set a new record at Russia 2018.”

Categories
Football International News

Russia 2018: Nigeria share record with Germany and Spain

In qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals, a total of seven players scored for the Super
Eagles of Nigeria, and the ticket was secured on October 7, 2017, in Uyo.

Qualification was also secured after seven matches (two against Swaziland, two against Cameroon, two against Zambia and one against Algeria).

Another number seven has emerged, with the Super Eagles being one of only SEVEN countries
worldwide to remain unbeaten in the qualifying campaign for Russia 2018.

The other countries are five-time world champions Brazil; four-time champions Germany; 1966 champions England; 2010
champions Spain; Belgium and; Iran.

However, only THREE countries in the world, including Nigeria, remain unbeaten in the past three qualifying series for FIFA World Cup finals (South Africa 2010, Brazil 2014 & Russia 2018), the others being Germany and Spain.