Sunday, September 30, 2018

Jurgen Klopp Keeping Faith In Mohamed Salah After Chelsea Sub

Jurgen Klopp remains confident in Mohamed Salah after the Liverpool star missed several chances in Saturday's 1-1 draw at Chelsea.

After a slow start to the season, Salah failed to score against Chelsea, going closest in the first half when he saw a shot cleared off the line.

He was taken off in the 66th minute, with Liverpool then scoring late through Daniel Sturridge to salvage a 1-1 draw.
Chelsea 1-1 Liverpool
Klopp refused to criticise last season's top scorer Salah, but said: "It was not Mo's best game of his career, 100 per cent.

Xherdan Shaqiri came on as a second-half substitute for Mohamed Salah
Xherdan Shaqiri came on as a second-half substitute for Mohamed Salah
"In a game like this constantly in situations he comes in, that makes you a world-class player. You fail, you miss, whatever, that happens.

"He wants to be decisive, he wants to score in these situations. The first ball he missed it was not the right position. The next one he passed. Why? He could've finished again.

"It's like riding a bike. It's not like you wake up in the morning and you cannot finish any more or cannot ride a bike any more.

"That's how it is, you only need to work for these moments when it's clicking. That's the period he is in, no problem with that, so all good.

While Salah has struggled to hit top form this season, Sturridge has scored in his last three matches.
"He's in the best shape since I've known him," Klopp added. "It's really cool. I'm really happy for him.
"When he came in the dressing room it was pretty loud. The boys were really happy for him because he's in a good moment."

Reflecting on the match, which saw Liverpool drop their first points of the season, Klopp added: "Six, seven times we had big chances. We gave them one proper chance, they used it and we didn't use ours. That's how life is.
"As long as we play like we did tonight we will win football games."

Why Emery will not sanction Ramsey’s big money demand

The Mail’s chief football writer Rob Draper has stated that manager Unai Emery’s decision will play a major role in ensuring contract rebel, Aaron Ramsey is handed a lucrative deal at Arsenal.

Ramsey is running into his last year at the Emirates Stadium without agreeing on a new deal with his employers. He was reported to have walked out on deal talks.

It has been suggested that the player’s action is a protest against the club for not inviting him for a contract talks as it was done in the case of Mesut Ozil last in the January transfer window.

However, Draper stated that Arsenal must learn to improve their negotiation of contracts for its key players including making hard decisions.

He noted Ramsey will be okay with the sum of £200,000 a week-deal but that will be subject to him being the first, two best players in the club.

The football writer, therefore, stated that he doubts if the Spanish manager sees the Welshman in such a category in his team and that is key in what the disagreement in the deal has been.

He affirmed that Ramsey is seen as an important player in the Arsenal team but not worthy of having such a financial benefit yet, knowing that the club has been weighed down with the financial commitment of Mesut Ozil.

Lionel Messi Demands Better From Barcelona After Athletic Bilbao Draw

Lionel Messi said Barcelona are "angry" and called for improvement after a 1-1 draw at home against Athletic Bilbao on Saturday.

Messi was a surprise absentee from the starting line-up, but was called into action in the second half after Oscar de Marcos had put the visitors ahead.

The Argentinian hit the woodwork for the seventh time this season as Barca desperately chased an equaliser following their 2-1 defeat at lowly Leganes on Wednesday and 2-2 draw with Girona last weekend, eventually providing the cross for Munir El Haddadi's 84th-minute leveller.

Barcelona 1-1 Athletic Bilbao
"We are not anxious because the season is long and has only just started, but we are angry about the last results," said Messi. "We didn't expect them.

"Against Leganes we played well in the first half and lost, and today we created chances to win but couldn't."

De Marcos' volley was the eighth goal the La Liga champions have conceded in seven games this season and Messi said his side urgently needed to improve in defence.

Munir levelled up for Barcelona to avert a rare home defeat
Munir levelled up for Barcelona to avert a rare home defeat
"We are aware that we have to be much stronger defensively," added Messi, who inherited the Barca captaincy from the departed Andres Iniesta this season.

"Last year we hardly conceded goals but now teams are scoring against us with their first attempt. We cannot afford to concede goals in every game. We have to improve and become stronger in defence, which is the most important thing."

Messi's strike partner, Luis Suarez, also criticised Barcelona's display and said the team needed to rid themselves of their dependence on their all-time top scorer.

"He is the best in the world but we can't rely on Leo to always sort everything out for us," Suarez said.
"The other players here are here on our own merits and we can't depend on him or Busquets, we should have been winning when they came on to the pitch."

When asked about Suarez's comments, Messi said he agreed with his team-mate.
"We have the squad and the players to be a great team and not depend on anyone, like it always used to be at Barca," Messi added.

Carabao Cup 4th Round: Chelsea To Face Lampard’s Derby County; Arsenal, Blackpool Clash

Victor Moses and his Chelsea teammates will face Derby County in the Fourth Round of the Carabao Cup, reports Rush Hour

The Carabao Cup draw which took place on Saturday night will see Chelsea legend, Frank Lampard, now manager of Championship side, Derby County come up against his former club at the Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea beat Liverpool 2-1 in their Third Round fixture at the Anfield Stadium on Wednesday with Eden Hazard scoring a supeb winner.
Former Nigeria international, Victor Moses, played the entire 90 minutes of the game, his first start for the Blues this season.
Derby County on the other hand edged Manchester United 8-7 on penalties after the game ended in a 2-2 draw in regulation time.

Alex Iwobi’s Arsenal were also handed a home fixture against Blackpool.
The Gunners beat Brentford 3-1 in the previous round.

Leicester City who have Nigerian duo, Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho in their ranks will come up against the winner of the Third Round tie between Everton and Southampton.

The Foxes beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-1 on penalties to book their Fourth Round ticket.
A date will be announced for all the Carabao Fourth Round games later.

All The Carabao Cup 4th Round Fixtures
Manchester City vs Fulham
Bournemouth vs Norwich
Arsenal vs Blackpool
Leicester vs Everton or Southampton
West Ham vs Tottenham
Middlesbrough vs Crystal Palace
Chelsea vs Derby
Burton vs Nottingham Forest

Chelsea 1-1 Liverpool: Daniel Sturridge scores Superb Equaliser

Report and highlights as Eden Hazard and Daniel Sturridge score in dra,

Daniel Sturridge scored a stunning late equaliser as Liverpool fought back to claim a 1-1 draw against Premier League title rivals Chelsea in an absorbing contest at Stamford Bridge on Saturday evening.

Eden Hazard fired in the opening goal after 25 minutes, just days after coming off the bench to secure a 2-1 Carabao Cup win for Chelsea at Anfield.

Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino had shots blocked on the line and Xherdan Shaqiri sliced wide from 12 yards out as Liverpool's hopes of extending their perfect start to the Premier League season faded.

However, they managed to salvage a draw thanks to a stunning 89th-minute strike from former Chelsea striker Sturridge, who curled a 30-yard shot over Kepa Arrizabalaga.
The result sees both sides remain unbeaten in the Premier League, but Manchester City now lead the way at the top of the table ahead of their clash with Liverpool next Sunday.

Liverpool, who were aiming to win their first seven games of a top-flight campaign for only the second time, looked the more threatening side in the early stages as Salah twice failed to test Kepa with shots from outside the box.

Sadio Mane then sliced wide before Chelsea created their first opening; David Luiz playing a fabulous long pass over the top for Willian, who was denied by Alisson.

Chelsea took the lead in the 25th minute after some intricate build-up play in midfield resulted in Mateo Kovacic releasing Hazard, who finished into the far corner with a low strike.
Salah went close to equalising when he took the ball around Kepa and then saw a shot cleared off the line by Antonio Rudiger.

Mohamed Salah and Olivier Giroud compete for possession
Mohamed Salah and Olivier Giroud compete for possession
Liverpool enjoyed more of the possession in the second half but were frustrated as Kepa made a sharp save to keep out a low shot from Mane.

Hazard spurned an excellent chance to make it 2-0 when he was played through on goal by a quickly-taken free-kick but failed to beat Alisson.

Shaqiri then skewed wide from the penalty spot and Roberto Firmino saw a header blocked on the line by David Luiz as Chelsea looked as though they would hold out.

However, Sturridge snatched a draw in memorable style as he curled a left-footed shot over Kepa from 30 yards out.

What's next?

Chelsea host MOL Vidi FC in the Europa League on Thursday before travelling to Southampton on Sunday, live on Sky Sports. Liverpool go to Napoli in the Champions League on Wednesday before facing champions Manchester City next Sunday,

Unai Emery Wants 'More Control' From Arsenal After Unconvincing Watford Win

Unai Emery demanded his Arsenal sideshow "more control" in games after another unconvincing win saw off Watford.

Two goals in the last 10 minutes put some extra shine on a performance which could easily have ended with a Watford win, but did not stop Arsenal registering their seventh victory in a row.

Emery said control was missing from his side's performance as they moved fifth in the table, and admitted his side need to be better going forward.

"We need more control of the game, but against a good team in Watford, who played a lot of long balls and controlled second balls through Troy Deeney, we stopped them attacking," said the Spaniard.

"But still, in the first half we had a good chance through Alexandre Lacazette, and I said to him the most important thing is to be creating these chances, and then we will score goals.

Highlights from Arsenal's 2-0 win over Watford
To watch Premier League action on your mobile now download the Football Score Centre on iPhone or Android
"The second half was the same, both of our goalkeepers showed a lot of improvement, and we needed another player to help us continue our confidence."

Petr Cech was forced off moments before half-time with a hamstring injury and replaced with Bernd Leno, who had a busy game to keep out efforts from Troy Deeney and Andre Gray.
Emery said his number one would be fit again in two to three weeks, and praised both goalkeepers for their contribution to a second straight Premier League clean sheet.

He said: "Both goalkeepers were very good in pre-season and in training, and I want to give them chances to have minutes, like on Wednesday and today. [Leno] was prepared, and gave us a good performance."

Arsenal's Petr Cech injured During Defeat Of Watford

Arsenal boss Unai Emery says goalkeeper Petr Cech could be sidelined for up to three weeks after limping off during the win over Watford.

Cech suffered an injury in the first half of the 2-0 win at the Emirates Stadium and had to be replaced by Bernd Leno.
And the 36-year-old Cech will be assessed by the Arsenal medical team on Sunday.Emery said after the match: "I think it's a hamstring.

"Maybe he will miss two or three weeks. I hope not more.
"We will see tomorrow."

Bernd Leno made some good saves after coming off the bench against Watford

Bernd Leno made some good saves after coming off the bench against Watford
Leno performed well after coming off the bench for his first taste of Premier League action since arriving in the summer from Bayer Leverkusen.

Watford created several opportunities after the break but Leno denied the visitors with some good saves.

"I'm very happy with Leno," said Emery.
"I think he was content to wait for this moment and now it is arriving.
"His performance was the best for us today."
nal medical team on Sunday.

Arsenal 2-0 Watford: Mesut Ozil Seals Seventh Straight Win For Gunners

Craig Cathcart's own goal and a Mesut Ozil second gave Arsenal a flattering 2-0 victory over Watford for a seventh win in a row.

Alexandre Lacazette's pressure on Cathcart saw him turn Alex Iwobi's cross beyond Ben Foster with nine minutes to go at the Emirates, before which the visitors had enjoyed the better of the chances.

Will Hughes had volleyed an early chance wide, Andre Gray had a one on one saved by substitute goalkeeper Bernd Leno and an Isaac Success effort glanced the post with the scores goalless.

Player ratings

Arsenal: Cech (6), Bellerin (7), Holding (5), Mustafi (5), Monreal (6), Torreira (6), Xhaka (7), Aubameyang (6), Ozil (6), Ramsey (5), Lacazette (6)

Subs: Leno (7), Iwobi (7), Welbeck (5)

Watford: Foster (7), Navarro (6), Cathcart (6), Kabasele (7), Holebas (7), Hughes (6), Capoue (6), Doucoure (7), Pereyra (7), Deeney (7), Gray (6)

Subs: Success (7), Femenia (n/a)

Man of the match: Jose Holebas
But once unconvincing Arsenal went ahead they quickly added another, Lacazette turning provider and Ozil firing home (83) to give Arsenal a seventh consecutive win, and fifth in the Premier League.

Watford's confidence has not been shaken since their perfect start to the campaign was ended by a draw and a defeat from their last two games, and they pressed Arsenal from the off at the Emirates.

But they could have been behind within five minutes, when Christian Kabasele's cumbersome challenge in the box caught Lacazette. The forward gallantly tried to stay upright but stumbled over a second later - and it was enough for referee Anthony Taylor to wave for a goal kick.

Team news

Arsenal made one change from the side that beat Everton, with Rob Holding replacing Sokratis.

For Watford, Daryl Janmaat's injury meant Javi Gracia was forced to change his line-up for the first time this season, and chose Marc Navarro to replace him.

Hughes failed to take advantage of that let-off when he planted a volley wide from the edge of the box minutes later, when he should have found the target given the time he had to shoot.

An end-to-end game ebbed and flowed but Arsenal spent much of the game lacking imagination, and their best chance of the half came from a Watford mistake when Lacazette caught Cathcart in possession, before racing through and missing the far corner.

Petr Cech was forced off with a hamstring injury just before half-time and his replacement Leno needed to be in good form after it, denying Deeney's toe-poke from a Jose Holebas free-kick with a brilliant diving save.

It was his decisiveness rather than his reflexes which would then thwart Gray, when he raced off his line to narrow the angle when the striker was played through one-on-one and shot straight at him.

What would VAR have changed?

Ultimately, it would not have had an effect on the result, but had Anthony Taylor had a chance to review the decision not to give Lacazette an early penalty he would have changed his decision.
But he was nowhere near keeping out Success' effort when the Arsenal defence again went to sleep and allowed him to find space in behind, and was relieved to see the forward's dinked effort brush the far post before going out.

Arsenal's sighs of relief soon turned to cheers of delight when Iwobi's cross struck Cathcart's leg and bounced into his own goal, before Ozil doubled the lead from a rapid break with the visitors pushing forward for an equaliser.

Notes for Gareth Southgate

Will Hughes had a quiet time on the Watford right, and failed to really affect the game.

Troy Deeney showed his excellent link-up skills, making a number of chances and using his strength well.
Those goals extend the Gunners' winning run under Unai Emery for their longest run of Premier League victories since August 2017, but for the second weekend in a row their performance did not live up to the result.

Match stats

  • Watford have won only one of their last 15 away league games, drawing two and losing 12.
  • Since returning to the top-flight in 2015/16, Watford have scored seven own-goals, more than any current Premier League side.
  • Arsenal have scored 10 Premier League goals in the second half this season, a joint-high tally along with Manchester City.
  • Bernd Leno is the eighth German player to play for Arsenal in the Premier League (also Gnabry, Lehmann, Malz, Mertesacker, Mustafi, Ozil and Podolski); only Manchester City have seen more German players in the competition (10).
  • Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil has scored two goals in his last three Premier League games, as manay as he managed in his previous 18.
  • Since the start of last season, Alexandre Lacazette has been directly involved in 22 Premier League goals for Arsenal (16 goals, 6 assists), five more than any other player.

Man of the match - Jose Holebas

Holebas was the creator of a lot of Watford's good moments, including that Deeney toe-poke, and put in more good crosses (4) than anyone else on the pitch, while also keeping Bellerin and Aubameyang quiet for the most part.

His crossing ability is not too widely known outside of Vicarage Road, but he is capable of sending in inviting, whipped deliveries from the left, and more than adept from dead balls too as he showed at the Emirates.


Unai Emery: We are improving each match and that's giving us information to develop tactically and keep improving, but winning is the most important thing.
But when we are winning, we need to demand to continue to improve because there were a lot of things in the 90 minutes today which need to improve, but a lot of things we are doing well too.

Javi Gracia: We had a lot of chances, clear chances, but we didn't score and it was the same as in one of our previous games, if you don't score after dominating the gameWe had more chances more clear chances, more shots, more shots on target, and feel really good but at the end we didn't deserve the result.

What's next?

Arsenal travel to Qarabag on Thursday in the Europa League, with kick-off in Azerbaijan at 5.55pm. Watford face another 3pm start on Saturday at home to Bournemouth.

Swansea 3-0 QPR: Courtney Baker-Richardson Scores First Senior Goal

Courtney Baker-Richardson, Connor Roberts and Jay Fulton score for Swansea 

Courtney Baker-Richardson's first senior Swansea goal and strikes from Connor Roberts and Jay Fulton gave Graham Potter's side a 3-0 victory against QPR.
 The Welsh outfit had waited 291 minutes to find the back of the net after a poor run in front of goal, but Baker-Richardson put them ahead and Roberts made the game safe after the break.

QPR offered little as an attacking threat in a poor team display and substitute Fulton made it a deserved and comfortable success for the home side with a third goal late on.

Swansea started with midfielder Matt Grimes as a makeshift left back and Baker-Richardson led the line with Oli McBurnie supporting from a deeper role.
QPR included Angel Rangel - who spent 11 years and played 374 games for Swansea before leaving this summer - in defence.

Grimes fouled Ebere Eze early on and QPR had the game's first chance when Massimo Luongo curled a low effort into the side netting of Erwin Mulder's goal.

The visitors had looked the more dangerous, but it was Swansea who took the lead in the 16th minute. Kyle Naughton's cross to the far post was headed down by McBurnie and Baker-Richardson did the rest by smashing the ball home.

Baker-Richardson should have had a second just minutes later. Roberts' deflected cross found the 22-year-old but he spooned over the bar from just a yard out despite seeing an open goal in front of him.

After falling behind, QPR saw captain Luongo and Jake Bidwell booked in quick succession and Luke Freeman tested Mulder, but there was still time for Baker-Richardson to have one more chance before the break.

QPR dallied in defence, Tom Carroll robbed Eze and put the ball on a plate for Baker-Richardson who saw Joe Lumley produce a smart save.
Bersant Celina curled over when the second half began as QPR's poor final ball continued to frustrate Steve McClaren.

With better quality of their own, Swansea should have put the former England manager's side to bed earlier than they did and the game descended into a scrappy affair as both teams coughed up possession.

Celina tried his luck from range again and George Byers fired wide before McClaren introduced giant striker Matt Smith in search of an equaliser.
Swansea attempted to shore up their lead by bringing Leroy Fer and Fulton into midfield with Baker-Richardson withdrawn and McBurnie left alone up front.

It worked as Roberts scored the crucial second. Fulton's pass found the Wales international who passed up the opportunity to shoot on his favoured right foot and cut in on his left.
His choice made no difference to the overall outcome as Roberts' deflected effort left Lumley with no chance.

Fulton rubbed salt in QPR wounds after McBurnie dribbled through and the midfielder's right-foot effort was also deflected into the back of the net.


Preston 2-3 West Brom

West Brom's superb start to the season continued as strike partners Jay Rodriguez and Dwight Gayle punished Preston in a hard-fought 3-2 victory at Deepdale.

Rodriguez and Gayle struck either side of a Ben Davies own goal to move West Brom to the top of the Championship and consign Preston to the foot of the table despite goals from Andrew Hughes and Alan Browne.

Following a drab opening 45 minutes, all five goals arrived in the second half. Rodriguez nodded home his seventh of the season straight after the break to give the Baggies the advantage before Hughes curled in a fine equaliser.

But just as Preston looked to turn the match around, Davies then nodded past his own goalkeeper Chris Maxwell. That own goal left Preston on the back foot and Rodriguez capitalised late on, curling home a fine free-kick before Browne nabbed a late consolation.

Rodriguez and Gayle are both helping to set the early goalscoring pace in the Championship this term and West Brom did not take long to threaten as Maxwell produced a fine point-blank save to tip over a close Kyle Bartley header early on.

After 11 minutes, it was Preston's turn to nearly seize the lead but Ryan Ledson's 20-yard strike bounced back off the foot of the post and away to safety.

The game entered a lull as half-time approached and neither side could claim to be dominating an encounter that was full of effort and intent but precious little real threat.

Immediately after the restart though the game exploded into life and West Brom finally made their quality count as Rodriguez broke the deadlock, rising highest to brilliantly finish off Jake Livermore's intelligent cross.

The goal sparked Preston into life as they knew they needed a quick response and although Brandon Barker and Ledson battled hard, the visitors' muscular defence had little to worry about until Ben Pearson was fouled on the edge of the box after 70 minutes.

That allowed Hughes to step up and curl a fine effort into the far corner that left Sam Johnstone unsighted and helpless.

However, Preston were only level for two minutes as Davies attempted to head a threatening cross away but could only loop it over Maxwell.

Gayle then stepped up and hit a wonderful 20-yard free-kick in the dying moments and although Browne that nodded home a close-range goal deep into injury time, Preston could not find an equaliser.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Jose Mourinho Defends Team Selection Following Man Utd's 3-1 Defeat At West Ham

Mourinho started with Scott McTominay and Anthony Martial at the London Stadium 

Jose Mourinho defended his team selection after Manchester United crashed 3-1 at West Ham and singled out "special" Scott McTominay for praise.

Mourinho left the under-performing Alexis Sanchez out of his squad for the trip to the London Stadium and then revealed his decision to start with a back three, including midfielder McTominay, was to accommodate Anthony Martial.

But Martial was hauled off with 20 minutes remaining, along with Paul Pogba, as Felipe Anderson’s early strike, a Victor Lindelof own-goal and Marko Arnautovic’s finish left United empty-handed.

 Anthony Martial started for United at West Ham
Anthony Martial started for United at West Ham
And Mourinho’s glowing praise of youngster McTominay gave the distinct impression that he was sending a message to certain other players.

“I wanted to play Martial, it’s something [people] are asking for a long, long, long time,” he said.
“I left Alexis out, and I think Martial is not a player very focused on his defensive duties so to play him as second striker would be easier for him.

Highlights from West Ham's 3-1 win over Manchester United in the Premier League
To watch Premier League action on your mobile now download the Football Score Centre on iPhone or Android
“But at the same time I felt we needed quality on the ball, building from the back, and Scott McTominay has that quality. Everything that left his foot was correct.

“He’s a special character, a special personality that a team in a negative moment needs," he added. “Do my other players have that mentality? Not all of them. Everybody is a different person.
“Scott McTominay is a kid with a special character, very humble, aggressive in a positive way, brave, he’s a special kid."

West Ham were ahead after five minutes after Pablo Zabaleta was slipped in behind Luke Shaw down United's left and his low cross was met at the near post with a deft backheel from Anderson.

Mourinho claimed Zabaleta was offside, and that the same defender fouled Marcus Rashford in the build-up to Arnautovic's late goal, which came moments after substitute Rashford had halved the deficit. But he did admit defensive errors were to blame for Yarmolenko's shot looping into the top corner off Lindelof just before half-time.

Jose Mourinho shows his frustration during the game against West Ham
Jose Mourinho shows his frustration during the game against West Ham
"We were a team that comes with that mental fragility of a bad result [the Derby match]," he said.
"Coming here and after five minutes we were losing 1-0, which is not the best way to start. The goal was offside and, last Tuesday with the VAR, it would not have been a goal.

"Then in the first half we had a good reaction but an own goal makes 2-0. An own goal where we knew Yarmolenko is very, very left-footed, we had to cover that side, we had Matic on the ball and Luke Shaw and Lindelof very close by, but we were not aggressive enough to close that shot and then we were losing 2-0."

Paul Pogba and Andriy Yarmolenko in action
Paul Pogba and Andriy Yarmolenko in action
Up next for Manchester United is Valencia at Old Trafford in the Champions League and despite his side's poor results in recent matches, Mourinho says the club should be looking forward to the match on Tuesday.

"For myself, speaking of my own feelings, I am really happy that we have a game on Tuesday," he added. "I am really happy that I now go to the train and I start immediately thinking about training tomorrow, about the match on Tuesday and I prefer that than playing next Sunday, with one week of these bad feelings.

"I look forward to that match on Tuesday and I hope the majority of the players have this same kind of mentality, and that they are looking forward to Tuesday."


Friday, September 28, 2018

#FIBAWWC: D’Tigress’ Journey Comes To An End After Loss To USA

The Nigerian women’s basketball team D’Tigress‘ journey has come to an end at the ongoing FIBA Women’s World Cup in Spain.

The team wowed the whole world after winning three matches consecutively in the tournament.

D’Tigress, after defeating Turkey, Argentina and Greece, became, not only the first African team to win a match or advance past the group stage in the world cup, but also the first to advance to the Quarter Finals.

The team lost to the United States of America 40 – 71 on Friday.

We wish them all the best and congratulate them for making the country proud!

Western Stima promoted back to the KPL

Western Stima secured promotion back to the SportPesa Premier League following their Friday’s 1-0 victory over Coast Stima in a National Super League (NSL) clash held at Moi Stadium in Kisumu.

It was all jubilation for the coach Paul Ogai's side when centre referee Evans Waka blew the final whistle of the match, with a handful of their supporters present at the stadium giving them a standing ovation for making a return to the top flight.

The power men claimed the points courtesy of Mukisa Junior's 88th minute strike, which sees them maintain top spot on 76 points.

This means that the worst Stima can finish in the second tier competition is second spot, that is if they lose all their remaining two matches against Nairobi Stima and Talanta FC,

Only the top two finishers are guaranteed slots in the top tier.

Ogai was quick at expressing his joy following his side's major achievement stating: “I am happy to have returned the team to the main top league. It has been a long journey for me especially in the first three matches, but we recollected ourselves and it went well."

Coast Stima coach Kinero Swaleh said his side played well, and were unlucky to lose from a set piece.

"We did our best in the match, but we did achieve what brought us here. Defending a set piece is never easy," said Swaleh.

Elsewhere, KCB thumped Green Commandoes 2-0 at Camp Toyoyo grounds courtesy of Dennis Ng'ang'a and Kennedy Owino goals in either half in another league tie on Friday.

The bankers are now on 69 points, seven below leaders Stima.

Fellow contenders Ushuru blew their promotion chances after a 1-1 draw against visiting St Joseph Youth in the early kick off at Camp Toyoyo.

Kevin Taabu cancelled Bill Oporia’s early goal as the Nakuru-based side clawed back a point leaving the tax men fourth on 62 points.

Coast Stima goalkeeper Benedict Meso denied James Ogada a goal in the 11th minute, when he saved his close range shot, before they wasted a chance from the resultant corner kick.

The intensity of the match lowered and for the the next 20 minutes, none of the sides had a short on target.

In the 31st minute, Nyarombo picked Ogada's pass inside the box and successfully rounded Alfred Maningi, before sending a heavy strike to the left, which Meso sent out , before he blocked Johana Mwita's header from Okoth's corner-kick.

The visitors then attempted to break, with Mohamed Nzai releasing Davis Shikala on the left, but his effort was thwarted a few meters from the box.

Looking not to stumble in the important match, coach Ogai made early substitutions at the interval, bringing in Hubert Kopany for John Oruko and Wesley Kemboi for Nyarombo in the 64th minute.

The visitors responded a minute later with a double substitution as coach Swaleh brought in Okoth Okumu and Muhidin Muhidin for Collins Kombo and Shikala respectively.

The host continued to pile pressure on their opponents and twice came close to breaking the deadlock, but they blew the chances away.

Ogada's 83rd minute close-range attempt was blocked by Meso, before the goalkeeper again denied substitute Kopany a few minutes later.

But it was Junior's stunning free-kick in the 88th minute after Okoth had been fouled on the left near the box that made a difference.

The latter beat Meso with a strike to the far right of the goal post to earn his side promotion.

Friday's Results

Ushuru 1-1 St Joseph Youth (Camp Toyoyo grounds)

KCB 2-0 Green Commandoes (Camp Toyoyo grounds)

Western Stima 1-0 Coast Stima (Moi stadium)

Super Falcons still Highest Ranked African Team in the World

The Super Falcons who have qualified to defend the Africa Women’s Cup of Nation later this year are ranked 38th in the World; 9 places above the next ranked African team – Ghana.

There were no movements in or out of the top five in Africa, just accumulation and deduction of points.

The top five still maintain their position with Ghana (47), Cameroon (49), South Africa (50) and Equatorial Guinea (54) appearing in that order.

Globally, the USA, Germany, England, France and Canada make up the top five.

The ranking was released on Friday by the world governing body and the next FIFA Women’s World Ranking will be published on 7 December 2018.

Somali president joins fans at Mogadishu football final

Somalia president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Farmaajo was in attendance on Monday evening when residents of the capital gathered to watch a football game in the capital, Mogadishu.
The Mogadishu district football tournament final at Banadir Stadium was between Waberi district and Shibis with Waberi prevailing at the end with a lone goal.

The president was joined by hundreds of citizens who watched the game under floodlights. Local media reports that it is the second successive championship victory for Waberi team which beat Hodan district last year.
Farmaajo who skipped the ongoing United Nations General Assembly to attend to pressing political issues at home wore the Somali colours, handed medals and delivered the trophy and a speech at the game.

Somalia’s capital has seen an upsurge in terrorist attacks believed to be carried out by Al Shabaab militants, that did not stop fans from trooping to the game or celebrating their teams victory.

Koulibaly Proud To Don Napoli Captain's Armband

Kalidou Koulibaly donned the Napoli captain's armband for the first time this week in a 3-0 Serie A win over Parma.

The Senegal international wore the armband following the substitution of Lorenzo Insigne in the second half, with regular skipper Marek Hamsik on the bench.

"It was a great feeling and I'm very proud to have worn the Napoli captain's armband for the first time," said Koulibaly as quoted by the club's official website.

The 27-year-old has played every minute for Napoli this season, in what is his fifth campaign at the club following his move from Belgium Pro League side Genk four years ago.

In total, Koulibaly has made 171 appearances for the club - scoring eight times. He recently signed a new long-term contract to keep him at the Stadio San Paolo until 2023.

Emmanuel Adebayor Shares Grass To Grace Story With A Touching Photo

34-year old Togolese footballer, Emmanuel Adebayor has just shared a grass to grace story where he compared the house he used to live before to the mansion he resides now.

Emmanuel shared the news on Instagram encouraging his followers that if he can do it, they can do it too. He simply puts it has hard work!

''SEA, when I was growing up, we lived in rental homes; the most recent one I remember cost about $40 a month; and even that we struggled to pay at the end of the month (see picture #3)...Today I look back and I feel proud of what I have accomplished. This is not a message to tell you « I have made it », but rather to say « You can do it too !». All you need to do is believing in yourself and keep working even when no one is watching. Also I need your advice, should I build this next project or no? Tag a friend who needs to see this'', he wrote to his 921,000 followers.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Former Flying Eagles Player Slumps & Die Near Home

Ebitimi Collins, a former Flying Eagles and Stationery Stores defender has died aged 54. He slumped and died on Wednesday in Lagos.

Family sources said the deceased, slumped in the early hours of Wednesday close to his house in Ikorodu.

“Collins slumped and died around 5.30am on Wednesday. He had slept out but was coming home to pick up  his hospital card because he had an appointment with his doctor, when he slumped a few metres to his house,” Olabisi Olawepo, a close family friend said.

It was learnt that he had been ill for a while but had recuperated before he died on Wednesday.

UEFA Lists Nine Historic Records Ronaldo And Messi Are Yet To Break

The Union of European Football Associations, UEFA, has revealed nine records Barcelona ace, Lionel Messi and Juventus star, Cristiano Ronaldo have not yet broken in the history of Europe’s topflight competitions, (Champions League and Europe League).
UEFA took to their official website today to release the records, indicating that Messi and Ronaldo are yet to break the following feats in the Europe topflight leagues:

1. Most appearances – Messi has 126, while Ronaldo has 158, but the record is being held by Porto goalkeeper, Iker Casillas (179).

2. Most final goals – Messi has scored only two final goals (in 2009 and 2011), while Ronaldo has four (one apiece in 2008 and 2014, and two in 2017) but is still three shy of the record shared by two Real Madrid legends, Alfredo Di Stéfano, Ferenc Puskás, who have both scored seven.

3. Oldest goalscorer – AC Milan legend, Paolo Maldini scored for his side’s defeat to Liverpool at the age of 36 in the 2005 Champions League final and also Roma legend, Francesco Totti scored at the age of 38 in his side’s Champions League group stage clash against CSKA Moskva in 2014.

4. Player with most success with different clubs – Clarence Seedorf (Ajax 1995, Real Madrid 1998, Milan 2003, 2007) and Zlatan Ibrahimovi? (Ajax, Juventus, Internazionale, Barcelona, Milan, Paris Saint-Germain) are both ahead of Messi and Ronaldo.

5. Fastest goal – Roy Makaay scored in 10.12 seconds for Bayern München against Real Madrid in 2007. Ronaldo’s earliest Champions League goal came in the fourth minute for Real Madrid against Juventus in 2013, while Messi’s fastest goal came in three minutes into Barcelona’s 7-0 win against Celtic in 2016.

6. Long-distance goal – Manchester United legend, Ryan Giggs has sixteen long-distance goals in the Champions League. Ronaldo has 13, while Messi has 14.

7. Goalscoring consistency – Bayern Munich forward, Gerd Müller has 0.97 goals per game ratio. Ronaldo has 0.76, while Messi has 0.82.

8. Fastest hat-tricks – Bafétimbi Gomis got his fastest hat-trick for Olympique Lyonnais against Dinamo Zagreb in 2011. Ronaldo scored his fastest hat-trick in 12 minutes for Real Madrid against Malmö in 2012, while Messi scored his fastest hat-trick in 22 minutes for Barcelona against Arsenal in 2010.

9. Most goals in a single European season – Colombia striker, Radamel Falcao scored 18 goals for Porto during the 2010/11 UEFA Europa League. Messi’s best year came in 2011/12 when he ended the European season with 14 goals, while Ronaldo set a European Cup/UEFA Champions League record with 17 in 2013/14.