Liverpool piled the pressure on Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho as Jurgen Klopp secured a hugely impressive first Premier League win since taking charge at Anfield by beating Chelsea 3- 1 at Stamford Bridge. Mourinho was recently given the backing of Chelsea’s hierarchy after their poor start to the season – but whether their faith remains after this desperate defeat remains to be seen. Chelsea made the perfect start when Ramires headed them into the lead after only three minutes but Liverpool’s confidence was not dented and Philippe Coutinho equalised spectacularly in first-half stoppage time. Coutinho put Liverpool ahead with a shot that deflected off John Terry with 16 minutes left before substitute Christian Benteke wrapped up a victory Klopp’s side thoroughly deserved. How long more will Jose stay? We’ll get to see.
Watford secured their second win in a row with victory over West Ham as Odion Ighalo continued his goalscoring form. Ighalo turned home the opener after Nathan Ake robbed a dallying Andy Carroll in defence and crossed low. The Nigerian doubled Watford’s lead just after the break, firing home from Ikechi Anya’s cut-back for his seventh goal of the season. Enner Valencia intercepted Craig Cathcart’s poor backpass but hit the post, before James Collins saw red. The centre-back was dismissed for a foul on Ighalo, who was then replaced by Adlene Guedioura. Watford’s win, their second at home since promotion from the Championship last term, moves them up to ninth, while West Ham drop to fifth. Odion Ighalo is now the highest scorer in Watford’s Premier League history, overtaking Heidar Helguson and Hameur Bouazza. This is the first time Watford have scored more than once at home in a Premier League game since April 2007 (4-2 v Portsmouth). Ighalo has now been involved in Watford’s last nine Premier League goals, scoring seven and setting up two.
Former candidate Luis Figo has come out in support of UEFA’s Gianni Infantino for the FIFA presidency. In a statement, Figo has praised Infantino, saying he “knows football inside out and his experience, competence, hard work and honesty make him the best candidate for the FIFA presidency”. “I fully support him in this race and I humbly ask all of those who will vote on the 26th of February to back Gianni Infantino. He won’t let football down”.
It has emerged that the Ministry of Sport in Russia has signed a document banning all foreign head coaches. According to Eurosport, the bill was signed on September 21st and published on the official web portal of legal information on October 28th. Interestingly, the Russian national team can still be run by a foreign coach. At clubs, they can employ foreigners as coaches – but not the head coach. Of the sixteen clubs in the Russian Premier League, six are run by foreigners. It’s unclear how soon they will be forced to leave their jobs. Former Chelsea coach, Andre Villas-Boas who now coaches Zenith St. Petersburg is one of the coaches to be affected by this new development.
Kelechi Iheanacho has revealed how “big brother” Wilfried Bony has made him feel part of the Manchester City family. Kelechi gave another glimpse of his exciting potential in City’s 5-1 Capital One Cup win over Crystal Palace, scoring one and making two others, and says Bony is a big help to him. The Nigerian teenager made his first start alongside Bony against Palace and says his fellow African has taken him under his wing. “Wilfried is a very good striker who is strong and intelligent,” said the forward. “He talks to me all the time and advises me. “We sit together in the dressing room and he’s like a big brother to me. Yaya too, I’m happy being with them.”
Super Eagles Coach Sunday Oliseh has released a team of 24 players for the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying fixture against Swaziland. The two–legged fixture will take place over four days next month, with the first leg in Lobamba on Friday, November 13, and the return at the Adokiye Amiesiamaka Stadium in Port Harcourt on Tuesday, November 17. Obafemi Martins is making a comeback to the team after announcing months back that he has retired from international football. Kelechi Iheanacho is being called up to the Super Eagles for the first time. The list is made up of 18 foreign based pros and 6 home based players.
Reigning FIFA U-17 World Cup champions, the Golden Eaglets of Nigeria advanced to a quarter-final meeting against Brazil on the back of a hat-trick from the impressive Victor Osimhen, ending Australia’s run with a one-sided 6-0 victory in Vina Del Mar. The tale of the first half was compacted into a three-minute period as Nigeria scored twice sandwiched either side of a gilt-edged opening for Australia. It was 2-0 at the interval, and the game was still a contest until the final 17 minutes before Nigeria ran riot against an Australian side looking flat after surviving the ‘group of death’. The Aussies started in pro-active fashion, but it was Funsho Ibrahim Bamgboye who hit the post with a rasping shot from the edge of the penalty area as Nigeria’s first effort narrowly failed to break the deadlock. That moment came on 22 minutes as Osimhen showed just why he is the tournament’s leading goalscorer by bursting forward with pace and power on the left, before turning his defender and sliding the ball impressively inside the far post.
Australia could have drawn level immediately with Cameron Joice seeing his shot saved, while Lucas Derrick pushed the follow-up wide as a golden opportunity was spurned. Almost immediately Nigeria were two in front as Funsho Bambgboye went to ground in the penalty area, and Kelechi Nwakali coolly slotted home the resultant penalty. The two goals seemed to inspire the Nigerians who took a greater hold as the half wore on creating several half-openings around the Aussie goal. Nigeria continued their powerful performance after the break, and although Australia dominated possession for periods, it was the Africans who ended the contest with a third. Osimhen scored twice in the space of six minutes, the second with another laser-perfect drive into the top corner. The deflated Aussies conceded to more goals in the dying minutes as firstly substitute Edidiong Michael Essien, and then Samuel Chukwueze, inflicted further pain as Nigeria stormed into the last-eight in confident fashion.
Nigeria’s Victor Osimhen scored the first hat-trick of Chile 2015 to see him stand alone as the outright top goalscorer in the competition so far with seven goals. The Golden Eaglets 6-0 victory over Australia is the joint-biggest win in the history of the FIFA U-17 World Cup knockout stages, level with Japan’s 6-0 win against their antipodean neighbours New Zealand in 2011, which also come in the Round of 16.
Seven candidates will stand in FIFA’s presidential election on 26 February. The candidates are: Prince Ali bin al-Hussein, Musa Bility, Jerome Champagne, Gianni Infantino, Michel Platini, Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa and Tokyo Sexwale. Trinidadian ex-footballer David Nakhid was not included on the list, despite saying he had submitted his candidacy. The election is to find a successor to the suspended Sepp Blatter, who is under criminal investigation. The Swiss 79-year-old announced he would be stepping down in June, with world football’s governing body at the centre of a corruption scandal. Nigeria’s Orji Uzor Kalu and Segun Odegbami who decleared interest did not make it to this level as they later bowed out.
How much can Jose Mourinho take these days? He has been charged with misconduct by the Football Association over his language and behaviour in Chelsea’s defeat by West Ham United. Mourinho was sent to the stands after going to speak to referee Jon Moss in his room at half-time on Saturday. Both clubs have been charged for failing to control their players and have until 29 October to respond. Chelsea are already facing a £25,000 fine for receiving more than five bookings in the Premier League loss. As well as the two yellow cards given to Nemanja Matic, Chelsea also had Cesar Azpilicueta, Willian, Cesc Fabregas, John Mikel Obi and Diego Costa booked at Upton Park. Mourinho’s assistant Silvino Louro was also dismissed during the match and has been charged with misconduct in relation to his behaviour in the technical area. The club is also going to be asked by the Premier League to explain why Mourinho did not take part in the post-match news conference. On Friday, Mourinho warned that his relationship with the media would be changing after phone camera footage of him in west London was published. Mourinho watched most of the second half from the directors’ box at Upton Park, but disappeared shortly after Carroll headed home West Ham’s winner to make it 2-1, and did not reappear to fulfil his post-match press duties. The Premier League has confirmed that should a club fail to undertake media obligations, the governing body will write to them to obtain their reasons before deciding on any sanction. It added that this can range from a warning to a fine, with each case looked at on its merits.
Chad have named former Cameroon captain Rigobert Song as their new national team coach. The 39-year-old was appointed on Monday to succeed Frenchman Emmanuel Tregoat, who was fired after failing to qualify the team for CHAN 2016. “It’s not going to be an easy task to qualify for the 2017 Nations Cup but we are prepared to give our best,” said the ex-Liverpool and West Ham defender. Song’s first task is a 2018 World Cup qualifier against Egypt in November. Les Sao will host the Pharaohs in the first match of the two-legged tie in N’Djamena on the 14th of the month. During his playing career, Song won over 100 caps for the Indomitable Lions, and also became the first African to play at four World Cups. Having made his international debut against Mexico in 1993, the former Galatasaray defender captained Cameroon for 10 years until Eto’o took on the role in late 2009. In 2003 he witnessed the death of Marc-Vivien Foe, who died on the pitch during Cameroon’s Confederations Cup match against Colombia. Song retired from international football in 2010 after playing at the World Cup in South Africa – the only time the tournament has been held on the continent. Highlights of his club career include a four-year spell at Turkish side Galatasaray and three years in England playing for Liverpool and West Ham between 1999 and 2002.
Aston Villa have sacked manager Tim Sherwood after eight months in charge. Villa are bottom of the Premier League following a 2-1 defeat by Swansea – the club’s sixth straight league loss – and Sunderland’s first win of the season. The club said in a statement: “The board believes the results on the pitch were simply not good enough and that a change is imperative.” The club are expected to speak to a number of potential replacements, and an announcement may not be made until after next week. Appointed in February to replace Paul Lambert, Sherwood reached the FA Cup final and led the club to a 17th-placed finish in his first season in charge, but has won one of ten league matches this term. Villa have not won since the opening day and are four points from safety. Sherwood has overseen just 28 games in all competitions – the shortest spell of any permanent Villa manager. The club’s statement offered Sherwood “sincere thanks for all his efforts during a difficult period last season and for the many positive contributions he has made to the entire football set-up”. After the defeat to Swansea, Sherwood evaded questions about his future, saying when asked whether he would be in the job next week that he was “not the person to ask”. He added: “I feel like the club is in a hole. At the moment we are short.” Villa’s next game is against Southampton in the League Cup on Wednesday. The Villa job was Sherwood’s second Premier League appointment following a spell at Tottenham Hotspur. The former Spurs midfielder was appointed at White Hart Lane in December 2013, but was dismissed in May 2014 despite the club finishing sixth in the Premier League.
The Nigeria Football Federation officials have announced that Super Eagles coach Sunday Oliseh has returned to Belgium after falling very ill in the team’s camp in Port Harcourt. The NFF officials said via their Twitter handle, “Coach Oliseh has returned to Belgium to continue treatment after being advised by Eagles medics. He became dizzy and weak after lunch on Thursday and he travels abroad tonight through the Port Harcourt Airport.” The development means that Oliseh will not be on the bench when Eagles take on Burkina Faso on Sunday in the second match of the qualifier for the 2016 Championship for African Nations. The former Nigeria captain had been reported as ill soon after Nigeria defeated Cameroon 3-0 in a friendly match played in Brussels. He was initially not expected for the match against the Burkinabes in Port Harcourt but he arrived in the camp barely 24 hours to the match. In his absence, Salisu Yusuf will take charge of the team in Ouagadougou on Sunday. The Eagles B are travelling to the Burkina capital with a 2-0 advantage from the first leg.
Nigerian Amos Adamu is under investigation by FIFA’s ethics committee, it revealed on Wednesday. Adamu is alleged to have breached FIFA’s code of ethics but world football’s governing body did not provide any more details. The 62-year-old was a member of FIFA’s executive committee for four years until 2010, when he was banned from all football activity for three years. He was banned over claims he asked for money in exchange for World Cup votes. Adamu’s suspension expired in October 2013. He was was a high-ranking government official for Nigerian sport for 20 years and was once considered to be a leading candidate to succeed long-serving Issa Hayatou as president of the Confederation of African Football.