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Victor Moses joins Chelsea’s injury list….

Chelsea fear the latest victim of the club’s hamstring curse, Victor Moses, will miss at least four weeks. Moses became the third Chelsea player in two weeks to suffer a hamstring injury, following striker Alvaro Morata and midfielder N’Golo Kante. Morata is hoping to return for Wednesday night’s Champions League clash against Roma, but Kante is set to miss the rest of October and Moses is facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines. Chelsea’s initial diagnosis put the recovery time of Moses at a minimum of four weeks, meaning he could miss the Premier League clash against Manchester United on November 5. Head coach Antonio Conte is worried that injuries are threatening to ruin his team’s season after being frustrated that Chelsea did not sign more players in the summer.

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Ahmed Musa opens own petrol station….

Ahmed Musa fills up a car with petrol as he poses at the station which is now owned by him

Leicester City and Super Eagles of Nigeria star Ahmed Musa opens his own petrol station in native Nigeria as he looks ahead to life post-football. It is not uncommon for footballers to dip their toes into the world of business to set themselves up for life post-retirement. After all, the playing career of a footballer is a short one… but not many can boast a business portfolio like Leicester forward Ahmed Musa’s. The Nigeria star is only 24, but he has just opened a petrol station in Kano, 500km north of his native Jos. Continue reading

Iceland become the smallest nation to qualify for World Cup….

Iceland players celebrate

Iceland became the smallest nation to progress to a World Cup after beating Kosovo to win their qualifying group for Russia 2018. The Euro 2016 quarter-finalists have a population of about 335,000. They are the only country to qualify for a World Cup with a population of fewer than one million. Gylfi Sigurdsson and Johann Gudmundsson got the goals on Monday evening. Sigurdsson settled his side’s nerves with a neat finish just before half-time then turned provider for Gudmundsson to ensure victory with a close-range strike. Iceland have won seven of their 10 Group I games in World Cup qualifying.

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Nigeria becomes the first African country to qualify for 2018 World Cup….

Arsenal’s Alex Iwobi scored as Nigeria beat a stubborn Zambia 1-0 to become the first African side to seal a place at next year’s World Cup in Russia. The win put them on an unassailable 13 points at the top of Group B. Chances were missed at both ends by the time Shehu Abdullahi provided the cut-back for Iwobi to finish from inside the box in the 73rd minute. Odion Ighalo, John Mikel Obi, Victor Moses and Moses Simon went close for the Super Eagles but failed to score. Zambia goalkeeper Kennedy Mwenne produced an acrobatic save to deny Wilfred Ndidi in the second half in a pulsating end-to-end encounter.

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Iniesta signs ‘lifetime contract’ with Barcelona….

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Barcelona midfielder and captain Andres Iniesta has signed a “lifetime contract” with the La Liga giants. The Spain international, 33, has made 639 appearances for the Catalan club – second on their all-time list – and scored 55 goals. Iniesta came through La Masia, the Barcelona youth academy, after joining in 1996 at the age of 12. He made his first-team debut in October 2002 and has won eight Spanish league titles and four Champions Leagues.

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Ivory Coast aim for fourth successive World Cup….

Serge Aurier

The Ivory Coast could move closer to World Cup qualification tonight if they win their tie away in Mali (8pm Nigeria time). The side have played in the last three tournaments and their squad currently includes five British-based players – Serge Aurier (Tottenham), Eric Bailly (Manchester United), Lamine Kone (Sunderland), Wilfried Bony (Swansea) and Jonathan Kodjia (Aston Villa). Ivory Coast have two qualifiers left and are currently one point clear of second-placed Morocco, who entertain Gabon tomorrow, with only the group winners advancing to Russia.

Nigeria close in on Russia 2018 World Cup….

MIKEL PRESS CONFERENCE

Nigeria could book their spots at next year’s World Cup in the penultimate round of African qualifiers this weekend. The Super Eagles can clinch a place in Russia with a win over visiting Zambia on Saturday. Nigeria will face second-placed Zambia in Uyo with their World Cup fate in their own hands. Zambia are they only side who can overhaul Nigeria at the top of Group B after Cameroon and Algeria’s World Cup chances were ended last month. The Nigerians, who are aiming for a third straight World Cup finals, won 2-1 in Zambia in October in the opening game of the group stage.

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This entry was posted on October 6, 2017. 1 Comment

Nigeria battle England for Abraham and Ojo….

Tammy Abraham

England U21 boss Aidy Boothroyd admits he faces a fight to hang onto England young guns Tammy Abraham and Sheyi Ojo. Chelsea striker Abraham recently had to publicly reaffirm his commitment to the Three Lions after it was revealed he met the president of the Nigerian Football Federation, who is a friend of his father. The three-time African Champions are keen to persuade the pair to switch allegiance, which remains possible due to their family heritage. Both players can opt to represent the Super Eagles before they feature for England at senior level. Until then, Boothroyd expects the charm offensive towards the highly-rated Premier League duo to continue. Liverpool winger Ojo is out for three months with a dislocated shoulder suffered while on loan at Fulham. Abraham, who is spending the season at Swansea, hopes to lead the line as England Under-21s host Scotland in a Euro 2019 qualifier at Middlesbrough’s Riverside Stadium.

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Oxygen of life….

Brazil

The Brazil team including Gabriel Jesus, Neymar and Dani Alves recovered from their 0-0 draw against Bolivia at high altitude with oxygen tanks.

Europa League draw….

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Group A: Villarreal, Maccabi Tel-Aviv, Astana, Slavia Prague

Group B: Dynamo Kiev, Young Boys, Partizan Belgrade, Skenderbeu

Group C: Braga, Ludogorets, Hoffenheim, Istanbul Basaksehir

Group D: AC Milan, Austria Vienna, NK Rijeka, AEK Athens

Group E: Lyon, Everton,Atalanta, Apollon Limassol

Group F: FC Copenhagen, Lokomotiv Moscow, Sheriff Tiraspol, FC Zlin

Group G: Viktoria Plzen, Steaua Bucharest, Hapoel Beer-Sheva, FC Lugano

Group H: Arsenal,BATE Borisov, Cologne, Red Star Belgrade

Group I: Salzburg, Marseille, Vitoria Guimaraes, Konyaspor

Group J: Athletic Bilbao, Hertha Berlin, Zorya Luhansk, Ostersunds

Group K: Lazio, Nice, Zulte Waregem, Vitesse Arnhem.

Group L: Zenit, Real Sociedad, Rosenborg, Vardar Skopje

Cristiano Ronaldo wins UEFA Player of the Year….

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lieke Martens

Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo has been named as Uefa’s Player of the Year, beating Lionel Messi and Juventus keeper Gianluigi Buffon to the prize. Ronaldo, 32, helped Madrid to a second consecutive Champions League title and finished as the tournament’s top scorer with 12 goals last season. The Portugal international has now won the award three times, one more than Barcelona’s 30-year-old forward Messi. Barca’s Netherlands midfielder Lieke Martens, 24, won the women’s prize. Martens was instrumental in her country’s European Championship victory this summer, where she was named player of the tournament. She beat Wolfsburg striker Pernille Harder and Lyon midfielder Dzsenifer Marozsan to claim the prize. There was also a special ‘President’s Award’ given to Francesco Totti, who retired from football in July after 24 years at Roma, the only club he played for. The 40-year-old is now a director at the Italian club.

Manchester United re-signs Ibrahimovic….

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Manchester United have re-signed Zlatan Ibrahimovic on a one-year contract. The 35-year-old former Sweden striker made 46 appearances and scored 28 goals for United last season. Ibrahimovic was released by the club in June after his season was ended prematurely by a knee injury, but he is expected to be fit again in December. “After his contribution last season he deserves our trust and we will be patient waiting for him to return,” said manager Jose Mourinho. Ibrahimovic, who initially joined the Red Devils on free transfer in July 2016, had been recuperating at United’s training ground after knee surgery.

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UEFA Champions League groups….

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Group A: Benfica, Manchester United, Basel, CSKA Moscow

Group B: Bayern Munich, Paris St-Germain, Anderlecht, Celtic

Group C: Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, Roma, Qarabag

Group D: Juventus, Barcelona, Olympiakos, Sporting

Group E: Spartak Moscow, Sevilla, Liverpool, Maribor

Group F: Shakhtar Donetsk, Manchester City, Napoli, Feyenoord

Group G: Monaco, Porto, Besiktas, RB Leipzig

Group H: Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, Tottenham, Apoel

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Man City to sign Kayode….

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Manchester City are set to sign Nigeria international Olarenwaju Kayode from Austria Vienna on a four-year deal and send him on a season-long loan to Spanish side Girona. The 24-year-old striker finished as the top scorer in Austria’s top flight last season with 17 goals in 33 games. Kayode had been linked with a move to Newcastle United. Four other City players are to spend the 2017-18 season at newly-promoted La Liga side Girona. Brazilian £10.7million midfielder Douglas Luiz, right-back Pablo Maffeo, midfielder Aleix Garcia and Colombian winger Marlos Moreno have all signed loan deals with the Spanish club.

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Garbine Muguruza is 2017 Wimbledon Women’s Champion….

Spain’s Garbine Muguruza won her first Wimbledon title with a straight-set win over five-time champion Venus Williams. The 23-year-old saved two set points and won the last nine games in a 7-5 6-0 victory under the Centre Court roof. Muguruza denied the 37-year-old a first major title for nine years, which would have made her the oldest female Grand Slam champion in the Open era. It is 14th seed Muguruza’s second Grand Slam title after her French Open triumph over Serena Williams in 2016.

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PSG names Okocha in hall of fame….

French football club Paris St-Germain have launched a new website and with it a Hall of Fame – check it out here.

Who makes the list? JayJay Okoha, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Ronaldinho and more. A true artist on the ball, ‘Jay-Jay’ Okocha lit up the Parc des Princes after a record 98 million franc move (around €13 million) with his mesmerising dribbling and exceptional shot. When he joined PSG in 1998, he received death threats, and had to call on bodyguards. His Paris debut was marked by a brilliant goal seconds after he had come off the bench against Bordeaux (3-1, 8 August 2002).

Hazard has ankle operation….

Eden Hazard

Eden Hazard is having an operation on his broken ankle today. The Chelsea forward suffered the injury during training, whilst on international duty with Belgium. It is understood he is now back in Chelsea’s care. The extent of Hazard’s injury has not been revealed but it has been reported he will miss the start of next season.

Cheick Tiote is dead….

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Former Newcastle United midfielder Cheick Tiote has died aged 30 after collapsing during training in China, a spokesman for the player has announced. In his seven years at United the Ivory Coast player made over 150 appearances, including three last season. He joined Chinese second-tier side Beijing Enterprises in February. “It is with deep sadness I confirm that Cheick Tiote sadly passed away earlier today after collapsing in training,” said spokesman Emanuele Palladino. “We cannot say any more at the moment and we request that his family’s privacy be respected at this difficult time. We ask for all your prayers.”

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