Archive | May 7, 2015

Flying Eagles of Nigeria to play friendlies in Germany….

Flying Eagles begin training for U20 World Cup

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has arranged three friendlies for the African U-21 champions, Flying Eagles of Nigeria who are currently training in Germany in preparation for the upcoming U-21 World Cup in New Zealand. Flying Eagles would take on Hoffenheim on May 12 in Hoffenheim, and face Nurnberg at their training ground in SudwestPark in Nurnberg three days later. The final friendly match against Freiburg will be played on May 19. The NFF is expected to submit the county’s squad list to FIFA on May 15.

LFP look to keep Spanish La Liga going….

La Liga: Could be shut down from May 16 over TV rights argument

Spain’s professional league (LFP) have started legal action to prevent the suspension of the final two La Liga match days. The LFP and Spain’s football federation (RFEF) have been involved in a disagreement with the government on a new law on collective bargaining for TV rights. A law was agreed last week, with the backing of the professional football league (LFP), which aims to create a more level playing field for clubs in Spain’s top two divisions by sharing out TV cash more equitably.

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Yaya ‘90%’ sure to leave City….

Yaya Toure is 90% certain to leave Manchester City this summer

Yaya Toure’s agent has told Sky Sports News HQ he is 90% certain the midfielder will leave Manchester City this summer. Dimitri Seluk confirmed three clubs are chasing Toure’s signature but he has yet to decide where his future lies. The Ivory Coast international will wait until the end of the season before he makes a final decision. Seluk confirmed he’s arrived in London – and is hoping to meet Manchester City to discuss Toure’s future – although he says no date for that meeting has been organised. Toure’s agent also joked he wants to check that Manchester City buy Yaya a cake for his birthday, next Wednesday, because last year Seluk said he was very upset that City hadn’t given him a cake.

Blatter wants action on women’s game….

Sepp Blatter says he is a champion of the women's game

FIFA boss Sepp Blatter says women’s football is “limping behind” the men’s game in both profile and sponsorship, BBC reports. The 79-year-old also thinks football is too “macho” and wants governing bodies around the world to employ more females in positions of influence. In 2004, Blatter, 79, was heavily criticised for suggesting female footballers play in “tighter shorts” to improve the game’s popularity. But he says he feels like “a little bit of a godfather” to women’s football. “Women’s football is still limping behind a little bit. To get new partners for women’s football is difficult because the focus is on men’s football,” said Blatter, who is seeking a fifth term as president of world football’s governing body.

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Pacquiao has surgery on shoulder….

Manny Pacquiao

Manny Pacquiao has had surgery on the shoulder injury he blamed for his Las Vegas defeat by Floyd Mayweather. The Filipino is being sued in Nevada after he was accused of lying about the torn rotator cuff suffered pre-fight. His surgeon Dr Neal ElAttrache is “more than pleased with the results”, but the 36-year-old faces up to a year out. Pacquiao was denied a pain-killing injection two hours before the bout because the Nevada Athletics Commission (NAC) were not aware of the injury. The NAC is considering disciplinary action against Pacquiao for not disclosing the shoulder problem on a form the day before the fight. Undefeated Mayweather, 38, has reportedly told ESPN  that he is open to a Pacquiao re-match in 12 months time, although the American has previously insisted he wanted just one more fight.

Manchester United agree Depay deal….

Memphis Depay

Manchester United have agreed a deal to sign Dutch forward Memphis Depay from PSV Eindhoven. The fee is believed to be in the region of £25-30m and the player will have a medical in Manchester next week. Subject to this being passed, the 21-year-old will join United once the transfer window opens in June. Depay scored 21 goals as PSV won the Dutch title this season and played under United manager Louis van Gaal during his time as Netherlands boss.

Guardiola endures humbling return to Nou Camp….

Pep Guardiola

Barcelona 3 – 0 Bayern Munich

Lionel Messi scored twice as Barcelona struck three times in the final 13 minutes of the first leg to whisk their Champions League semi-final tie away from a stubborn Bayern Munich side. The hosts seemed set for a frustrating night before Messi fired a low shot home from the edge of the area. Three minutes later he skipped past Jerome Boateng and dinked home coolly. Led by ex-Barca boss Pep Guardiola, Bayern pushed for an away goal and were punished again as Neymar raced clear. Until the devastating conclusion, the Germans had produced an excellent tactical display.

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Khan open to Mayweather fight in September….

Amir Khan

Amir Khan says he could fight Floyd Mayweather in September despite previously stating Ramadan might disrupt his training. Khan, 28, is a Muslim and is set to fast during the holy month, which lasts from mid-June to mid-July this year. Ahead of his bout with Chris Algieri on 29 May, Khan said: “Mayweather normally fights mid-September and Ramadan is a little bit earlier this year. “It gives me enough time to get the training done, so it can happen.” Khan said on Sunday that Mayweather’s manager was keen to “get a fight on” after the undisputed welterweight champion beat Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas. Mayweather, 38, took his unbeaten record to 48 fights with a one-sided points victory over Pacquiao and is expected to make his next fight his last. Khan, who takes on former light-welterweight world champion Algieri in New York, says he has also been invited to fight Pacquiao, 36. But Khan insisted his focus is purely on Algieri, who was knocked down six times by Pacquiao during a massive points defeat in November. He said: “I really can’t take this Algieri fight lightly – lose and it would ruin my dreams to fight the biggest names in boxing. “I’m not going to be fighting Mayweather until I win this fight. I’m not looking past Chris because I’ve made that mistake in the past. There are bigger fights out there for me, but this is my focus.”


Spanish domestic football to be suspended….

Barcelona-Real Madrid match. Photo: 22 March 2015

The Spanish football federation says it is suspending indefinitely all end-of-season games in disputes with the government, including over TV rights, BBC reports. A federation statement said it was also unhappy with receiving only 4.55% of pools revenue, though it said it was still open to dialogue. All matches will be suspended from 16 May, including the domestic cup final. In the top division, Barcelona lead La Liga rivals Real Madrid by two points, with only three games left to play. In the statement, the RFEF federation said it had acted after three months of talks with the government had failed to resolve the dispute. It said more than 600,000 players and 30,000 matches across the country would be affected by the suspension. However, it also stressed: “At the same time, and yet again, we reiterate the offer of dialogue to the Spanish government.” The RFEF acted after the government last week approved a new law on collective bargaining for TV rights. The law – which still needs to be approved by parliament – aims to regulate the rights to broadcast matches in Spain’s first and second divisions. The government has so far made no public comment on the federation’s statement. “The initial assumption is that this move has been taken in an attempt to head off a players’ strike which had been threatened for that weekend,” said Andy West, a Spanish football expert. “Players are unhappy with some terms of the deal, including the low percentage of revenue on offer to lower league clubs. “The issue of TV rights is a long-running one with most people recognising that Barca and Real receive far too much at the moment. Realigning it is not easy though,” Mr West added.