Rosario Central forward Teo Gutierrez sparked a brawl which led to himself and an opponent being sent off during his side’s match at Boca Juniors in the Argentine league. He scored and went to celebrate in front of Boca supporters by drawing an imaginary diagonal stripe across his shirt, a clear reference to his former club’s white shirts with red diagonal stripe. Furious Boca players surrounded Gutierrez, pushed and shoved him and knocked him to the ground. Rosario players then leapt to his defence, causing a brawl which lasted several minutes before he and Boca’s Ricardo Centurion were both sent off.
Ivory Coast captain and former Arsenal striker Gervinho has had successful surgery on ruptured cruciate ligaments but faces up to six months on the sidelines and will miss his team’s defence of the Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon in January. The 29-year-old was injured in training with his Chinese club Hebei Fortune last month but only underwent surgery in Paris last week.
Belgium newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws are running a story today saying Premier League champions Leicester City are trying to sign 19-year-old Genk midfielder Wilfried Ndidi. The player can also play as a central defender and has been capped by Nigeria.
Andy Murray set his sights on adding to his three Grand Slam titles after securing the year-end number one ranking with victory at the ATP World Tour Finals. The Briton, 29, beat Novak Djokovic 6-3 6-4 in London to ensure he will stay ahead of the Serb heading into 2017. “Now that I’ve got there, I obviously would be motivated to try and stay in that position,” said Murray. “But the majors get me working hard – they really, really motivate me.” Murray, 29, won his third major title at Wimbledon in July, and ended the year on a 24-match winning streak that culminated with victory over Djokovic at the O2 Arena. He will now take a break, including attending his father Willie’s stag do, before turning his attention to the new season and the Australian Open.
He covers a fair amount of distance on the pitch ‒ and it seems Lionel Messi is happy to go the extra mile off it, too. The Barcelona superstar has stepped in to cover the unpaid wages of the Argentina national team’s security staff, according to journalist Juan Palo Varsky. Reported by Sport, the 29-year-old forward was approached by the workers, who had not been paid for ‘several months’, prior to a match in Brazil. Varsky, speaking on the programme ‘No Somos Nadie’ on Metro 95.1, said: ‘Lionel Messi was in his room waiting for the game against Brazil in Belo Horizonte, when a knock at the door came. ‘Two or three people appeared, all from the security team who look after the Argentine team and they said “Leo, we have to talk with you. For five or six months they have not paid us. The situation is complicated, you are the captain of the team, you know us, we are asking for your help.”‘
Asisat Oshoala scored four goals as Nigeria began the defence of their women’s Africa Cup of Nations title with a 6-0 drubbing of Mali in Limbe on Sunday. The Player of the Tournament at the 2014 edition was in a class of her own as she terrorised the hapless Malian defence. USA-based Francisca Ordega and Uchechi Sunday also scored as the Super Falcons sent out a chilling warning to their rivals. The Group B game produced a slow start as both sides struggled to find their rhythm. But the complexion of the match changed after 22 minutes when Ordega – the Washington Spirit midfielder – struck to give Nigeria the lead.
Victor Anichebe started for Sunderland and played full time as they beat Hull City 3 – 0 at home at the Stadium of Light . He scored the second and third goals in the match making it three goals in two starts for the big man. He is making a strong case for a recall to the Super Eagles. David Moyes came in for some ridicule when he picked up Anichebe on a free over the summer. It looks like shrewd business now.
Kelechi Iheanacho was an unused substitute for Manchester City as they beat Crystal Palace 2 – 1 away at the Selhurst Park.
Victor Moses started for Chelsea as they beat Middlesbrough 1 – 0 away at the Riverside Stadium to go top of the EPL table. He was replaced by Ivanovic in the 90th minute.
Alex Iwobi was an unused substitute for Arsenal as they drew 1 – 1 away to Manchester United at the Old Trafford.
Ahmed Musa came in at the 78th minute for Leicester as they lost 2 – 1 away to Watford at the Vicarage Road.
Odion Ighalo was an unused substitute for Watford was they won Leicester 2 – 1 at home at the Vicarage Road.
Isaac Success was not selected for Watford’s game against Leicester. Mikel Obi was also not selected for Chelsea’s game against Middlesbrough – The inspiring Super Eagles captain continues to pay the price for leaving Chelsea’s pre-season to represent Nigeria at the Rio Olympics where he won a Bronze medal. Mikel had a wonderful game over the international break where he captained Nigeria and scored a goal as the Super Eagles beat Algeria 3 – 1 in a world cup qualifier played Uyo, Nigeria.