Dzeko: This Is The Best Season Of My Career

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Edin Dzeko has stated he is enjoying the best season of his career, as Roma take on Lyon in the Europa league.

Dzeko is playing his second season in the Serie A and already has 29 goals in all competitions so far this season.

The 30-year-old scored eight goals in Europe, scoring two hattricks in the competition and he thinks he has reached his peak.

“I’m 30, nearly 31, and I admit that this is maybe my best season ever,” he told UEFA.com. “I do not feel 30 years old.

“I’m fit and I am ready, but it’s no accident – I work a lot, before and after training.

“Scoring three goals in one game is not easy, but when I do it in the Europa League it motivates me because I know I’ve achieved something big.

“It motivates me to keep scoring. I think those are my only two hat-tricks in the Europa League and I hope there are many more to come.”

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International Women’s Day: Smirnoff Promotes Inclusivity And Equality In The Music Industry With #SMIRNOFX1FEMALEDJ Initiative

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There is no better way to celebrate International women’s day than to recognise the talent and individuality in women.

To this end, SMIRNOFF™ announced a global commitment to create change through their “Equalizing Music” initiative. By bringing music fans and industry leaders together, SMIRNOFF™ aspires to encourage the doubling the number of female headlinersby 2020.

Bringing it back home, Smirnoff kick started an extension of the global initiative in Nigeria tagged; #SMIRNOFX1FEMALEDJ; a concept that spotlights female DJs in Nigeria giving them a platform to showcase their talents, while also promoting the brand’s commitments to inclusivity and openness.

To promote this concept, Smirnoff Ambassador DJSpinall had earlier taken to social media calling out to female DJs across the country to be a part of this campaign by sharing entry videos; asking them to showcase their turntable skills and creativity; with the hope of becoming the #SMIRNOFFX1FEMALEDJ.

With dozens of entries from across Nigeria, the top 3 finalists have been selected and they will battle it out at The Smirnoff House Party: International Women’s Day Edition in Jos on the 10th of March where the winner of the#SMIRNOFFX1FEMALEDJ will be decided and announced.

See Entry videos of Top 3 finalists

For this special International women’s day Smirnoff house party, Award winning DJ; DJ LAMBO will be the headline performer.

The event powered by Smirnoff X1; Smirnoff X1 has two amazing flavours, the Smirnoff X1 extra smooth vodka and the Smirnoff X1 intense chocolate flavoured vodka. Celebrity DJ and Brand ambassador; DJ Spinall will also be in attendance.

International Women’s Day: Smirnoff Promotes Inclusivity And Equality In The Music Industry With #SMIRNOFX1FEMALEDJ Initiative

Remember, you have to be +18 to party with Smirnoff.

Drink Responsibly.

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Khan-Pacquiao Fight Is Off

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Manny Pacquiao’s proposed fight against Amir Khan has been called off according to Bob Arum, PacMan’s promoter.

The two welterweight boxers announced their superfight on Twitter at the end of February, with only the location left to be determined.

The UAE was a proposed location for the fight, but Bob Arum says the fight between Khan and Pacquiao is now dead in the water.

Speaking to ESPN, Arum said: “[Pacquiao’s adviser] Michael (Koncz) is on his way back to meet with Manny but it’s kaddish for the UAE deal. It’s dead.

“I’m talking to him about another proposal for another fight, not Khan. Khan won’t be Manny’s next opponent.”

Pacquiao, 38, who currently holds the WBO welterweight title, had tweeted last month: “Negotiations between team Pacquiao and team Khan have come to terms for the April 23 bout as this is what the fans wanted.”

Khan had posted in February: “My team and I have agreed terms with Manny Pacquiao and his team for a super fight #pacquiaokhan #April23rd.”

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Bellew: Haye Has Been Humbled

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Tony Bellew believes David Haye had no choice but to show his humble side after failing to fulfill his horrendous threat.

The pair of boxers were involved in a bitter war of words in the build up to the fight, a bout Haye lost to the Merseysider.

Bellew had to send his family to Dubai after the threats from the Londoner got unbearable for his family and he is glad that is behind him now.

“I think he’s shown a more humble side to him, which he needed to show, because in the build-up to this fight, he said some horrendous things,” Bellew told Sky Sports News HQ.

“It was at one stage I did send my children and my missus away from the country, because I didn’t want them to hear what he was saying. My missus was in tears about this man saying how he was going to put me in hospital and he’s going to end my career on that night.

“I sent them to Dubai, because I didn’t want them to hear any more of what he had to say in all honesty.”

“This whole build-up, I’ve just been me. I was there at the end,” said Bellew. “Would he have shown the same compassion to me? If he had done to me what he said he was going to do in one or two rounds, he would have just belittled me, laughed at me, and made a fool of me. He really, really would of. There was no way back for me.

“I looked at him and while my promoter and my trainer were jumping for joy and screaming on me, I looked at the man and he was hurt, he was badly, badly hurt.

“He didn’t have one person close to him, I’m being totally honest, who cared and wanted to help him back, and I did.

“I felt for David, because I know what it’s like to be a loser, I know what it’s like to be stopped on my feet. I just wanted to help him back to his stool.”

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Mings To Serve Five-Match Ban

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The Football Association has given Bournemouth defender Tyrone Mings a five-match ban for violent conduct after appearing to have stamped on Ibrahimovic’s head.

The defender was to serve a three-match ban after he was charged at the end of the match, with his club planning to appeal the decision.

However, the FA made it known they were pushing for an extended ban and not the regular match ban for violent conduct after an Independent Regulatory Commission hearing.

In their statement, the FA said: “The FA has submitted a claim that the standard punishment that would otherwise apply for the misconduct committed by the Bournemouth defender is ‘clearly insufficient’.”

Ibrahimovic was handed a three -match ban after catching Mings with his elbow. But Bournemouth will definitely be appealing the five-match ban handed to their defender.

A statement from Bournemouth said they were “extremely disappointed” with the decision, and insist there is no evidence to warrant the ban.

“We will study the detailed reasons of the commission once they become available but find it extraordinary that the charges can be described as ‘proven’ when there is absolutely no evidence to prove the incident was intentional,” the statement read.

“It is our strongly held belief – backed up by our relationship with the player, and knowledge of his background and character – that it was an accidental collision.

“Tyrone twice apologised to Ibrahimovic during the match for the accidental collision and also reiterated that there was no intent straight after the final whistle in a series of television interviews.

“We fully support our player. Tyrone has an excellent disciplinary record and has not been sent off in 75 matches as a professional. During that time he has only received 13 yellow cards – the last of which came in April 2015.”

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Report: Inter Milan Agree To Sign Fiorentina’s Federico Bernadeschi For €40m

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Inter Milan have agreed a deal to sign Fiorentina winger Federico Bernadeschi in June, reports Il Messaggero.

The Italy international, who has previously been linked with Spurs, will reportedly head to Inter at the end of the season after Suning Holding Group, which owns the San Siro club, reached an agreement with Fiorentina to sign him for €40m.

Earlier reports by Calciomercato.com said Inter were ready to use Fali Ramadani (his agent) to their advantage as they want to try to beat off the competition from Juventua.

Inter have close ties with Ramadani as he was the one who helped Perisic and Handanovic join Inter Milan and he was also the one who allowed Jovetic to join the nerazzurri. He has also been very close to Fiorentina too as he just recently helped them get Milenkovic and Vlahovic from Partizan Belgrade. 

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Hummels: Bayern Shouldn’t Feel Sorry For Arsenal Riot

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Mats Hummels does not see any reason why Bayern Munich should feel sorry, after beating Arsenal 10-2 on aggregate in the champions league.

Bayern Munich repeated the scoreline of the first leg away at Arsenal, winning 5-1 at the Emirates to further pile on the misery at Arsenal.

And Hummels who has lost 5-1 to Bayern when he was at Dortmund does not see any reason to feel bad for the heavy defeat.

“I don’t know if you can feel sorry in sports [for your opponent],” Hummels said at the Emirates Stadium. “You just have to do your best and it was very unlucky in the end for them. They had 50 good minutes and it can happen.

“Maybe we will face them in the coming years and face the same problem as them. I don’t think we have to be sorry, it is just sports. If you win, you just enjoy it. It doesn’t look good, of course, [for Arsenal] and that’s too bad.

“Maybe they felt they could score the goals and it was okay for them to keep playing like this but then we played things really well. I experienced it for myself. I lost 5-1 to Bayern Munich [when I was at Dortmund], when we felt we did a good job and we were not that bad to get beat like that.

“It was in Munich, in my last season with Dortmund. We lost 5-1 and it was pretty close until they scored the fourth goal. Bayern are a team that can go fast in one direction.”

“Of course, we tried to focus but we have to say we weren’t that aware of the game 100% from the beginning and I think there were some situations where you can see that we were not thinking as fast as we usually think,” he added.

“You saw Arsenal got a lot of second balls in the first half which was a problem for us and you can say it was not 100% from the beginning, we were not lazy, but it was not 100%.

“It was tough in the first 45 minutes and the chance from Giroud meant they had the chance to make it close, but with the red card, the game was over and everybody knew.

“They [Arsenal] wanted to keep being offensive and scored one goal, the way they played [up until the red card], maybe they felt like they would have deserved to win.

“Then when they went down to 10 men, we were very clever on the counter-attacks. We had some very nice goals. They lost the balls sometimes too easily. Sometimes these results can happen in a game which was clearly not a five-one.”

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Football Papers: All The Latest News And Transfer Gossips This Evening

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LIVERPOOL ECHO

  • Emre Can has less than 18 months to run on his Liverpool contract and Juventus are monitoring the situation.

LONDON EVENING STANDARD

  • Theo Walcott today urged his Arsenal team-mates to put their infighting behind them and string together a run of results to save Arsene Wenger’s job.
  • Leyton Orient fans have raised more than £60,000 of the initial £250,000 they believe they need to revive the struggling League Two club.
  • Chelsea plan to hold talks with Nathaniel Chalobah at the end of the season over a new contract. The club want to reward the 22-year-old for breaking into the first-team squad this term with an extension.

MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS

  • Manchester City have opened contract negotiations with Jadon Sancho over a new long-term deal to fend off interest from Arsenal.
  • Gabriel Jesus can ease the burden on Brazil team-mate Neymar after seamlessly adapting to life in the Premier League, according to former Arsenal midfielder Gilberto Silva.
  • Pep Guardiola is confident of tying up a £30m summer move for Real Madrid star Isco, according to reports.
  • Former Manchester United coach Albert Stuivenberg has portrayed Louis van Gaal as a distant coach during his turbulent two-year reign as the club’s manager.
  • Robert Lewandowski’s agent has dismissed the possibility of a transfer to Manchester United.

NEWCASTLE CHRONICLE

  • Sunderland are bracing themselves for a summer bid from Manchester City for talented goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, according to reports.

SUNDERLAND ECHO

  • Michael Ledger has completed his loan switch to Viking Stavanger.

BIRMINGHAM MAIL

  • West Bromwich Albion will hand a second trial to 16-year-old goalkeeper Zac Jones with a view to him joining the academy.
  • Steve Bruce is yet to decide whether to offer Chris Samba a contract at Aston Villa.

THE SENTINEL

  • Nottingham Forest are reported to be ready to sell young defender Joe Worrall, alerting Stoke City and “several other top-flight clubs”.

THE DAILY EHCO

  • Southampton are adamant that they will not rush Virgil van Dijk’s injury comeback.

WEST LONDON SPORT

  • Steven Caulker, Jordan Cousins and Jack Robinson are close to being available to return to the QPR squad.

LANCASHIRE TELEGRAPH

  • While the focus remains on the pitch for Burnley as they try and finish the job and secure their Premier League survival, boss Sean Dyche also has one eye on summer transfer plans.

BOURNEMOUTH ECHO

  • Bournemouth striker Joe Quigley could be on the verge of earning international recognition with the Republic of Ireland.

DERBY TELEGRAPH

  • Derby County’s record signing Matej Vydra is hungry for more goals after ending his scoring drought.
  • Brighton & Hove Albion central defender Vegard Forren has turned down Champions League football to help the Seagulls’ promotion push.

THE ARGUS

  • Brighton boss Chris Hughton has saluted the “outstanding” goalscoring contribution of Anthony Knockaert to Albion’s promotion challenge.

THE STAR

  • Alan Knill hailed Sheffield United’s mental strength after watching them increase their lead at the top of the League One table.

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Alonso: I Could Have Joined Barcelona

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Marcos Alonso has revealed that Barcelona were also interested in signing him , before he joined Chelsea.

The wingback joined the Stamford Bridge club from Fiorentina for a fee worth £24 million and has impressed for Conte’s side.

However, he has stated he could have joined Barcelona, before the La Liga giants signed Lucas Digne.

“Well, I think there was some conversations [with Barcelona] but the truth is that at that point it was not in my plans to leave Fiorentina,” he told IbTimes. “It was only when the interest from Chelsea arrived in the summer when I started to consider to make a change.”

“There were some great teams interested in me in the summer but I decided to join Chelsea because they are a team that I had always liked,” he added.

“I saw a possibility of succeeding here. I had some other offers from other teams from Italy and Spain but when Chelsea came to get me, I did not think twice. Chelsea are a club that had always attracted me.

“From my early years at Bolton I knew that Chelsea were a great club and the truth is that I was right to come here. Things are going well but I have to continue this way because I think I still can give much more. Now with the tranquility of not having to prove anything I have to keep improving.”

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Alonso: I Could Have Joined Barcelona

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Marcos Alonso has revealed that Barcelona were also interested in signing him , before he joined Chelsea.

The wingback joined the Stamford Bridge club from Fiorentina for a fee worth £24 million and has impressed for Conte’s side.

However, he has stated he could have joined Barcelona, before the La Liga giants signed Lucas Digne.

“Well, I think there was some conversations [with Barcelona] but the truth is that at that point it was not in my plans to leave Fiorentina,” he told IbTimes. “It was only when the interest from Chelsea arrived in the summer when I started to consider to make a change.”

“There were some great teams interested in me in the summer but I decided to join Chelsea because they are a team that I had always liked,” he added.

“I saw a possibility of succeeding here. I had some other offers from other teams from Italy and Spain but when Chelsea came to get me, I did not think twice. Chelsea are a club that had always attracted me.

“From my early years at Bolton I knew that Chelsea were a great club and the truth is that I was right to come here. Things are going well but I have to continue this way because I think I still can give much more. Now with the tranquility of not having to prove anything I have to keep improving.”

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Atletico Madrid And Sevilla Interested In Montpellier midfielder Ryad Boudebouz

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Atletico Madrid and Sevilla are tracking Montpellier midfielder Ryad Boudebouz, reports Le Buteur.

The 27-year-old has notched eight goals and six assists in Ligue 1 this term.

Spanish heavyweights Atletico and Sevilla are keen on the Algeria international, and the player himself has revealed he is interested by the prospect of playing in La Liga.

“Everyone tells me to go to Spain. I have never left France,” he said. “We will see what happens, although my agent has already spoken with the president about leaving at the end of the season.”

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Atletico Madrid And Sevilla Interested In Montpellier midfielder Ryad Boudebouz

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Atletico Madrid and Sevilla are tracking Montpellier midfielder Ryad Boudebouz, reports Le Buteur.

The 27-year-old has notched eight goals and six assists in Ligue 1 this term.

Spanish heavyweights Atletico and Sevilla are keen on the Algeria international, and the player himself has revealed he is interested by the prospect of playing in La Liga.

“Everyone tells me to go to Spain. I have never left France,” he said. “We will see what happens, although my agent has already spoken with the president about leaving at the end of the season.”

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5 Feared Dead As Hausa, Yoruba Communities Clash In Osun

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No less than five persons were reported dead after a fierce clash between Hausa and Yoruba communities in Sabo area of Ile- Ife in Osun state.

While the main cause of the clash remains unknown some reports have it that some Hausa men were accused of raping and harassing wives of Yoruba men in the Sabo area of Ile-Ife.

As a result of this, the Yoruba men attacked the Hausa community in a clash that erupted on Tuesday and culminated into a deadly one on Wednesday.

It was learnt that a number of residents fleed the Sabo area, while some kiosks were set ablaze by an angry mob.

More reports have it that the Sabo area has been completely locked down as all the stalls belonging to the Hausas situated in Lagere area have been completely destroyed along with the goods.

Meanwhile, soldiers and police men have been drafted to the area at the moment in an attempt to manage the situation.

Speaking to newsmen on the incident, Imam Muhammed Basir, the Senior Special Assistant to the Osun State Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola on Arewa Matter, said the situation has taken a very dangerous dimension.

While confirming that one person was shot dead, Bashir also disclosed that reports from the state claimed that more than three persons had been killed.

He called for more deployment of security agencies from Osogbo to intervene since the situation seemed beyond the Divisional Police unit.

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5 Feared Dead As Hausa, Yoruba Communities Clash In Osun

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No less than five persons were reported dead after a fierce clash between Hausa and Yoruba communities in Sabo area of Ile- Ife in Osun state.

While the main cause of the clash remains unknown some reports have it that some Hausa men were accused of raping and harassing wives of Yoruba men in the Sabo area of Ile-Ife.

As a result of this, the Yoruba men attacked the Hausa community in a clash that erupted on Tuesday and culminated into a deadly one on Wednesday.

It was learnt that a number of residents fleed the Sabo area, while some kiosks were set ablaze by an angry mob.

More reports have it that the Sabo area has been completely locked down as all the stalls belonging to the Hausas situated in Lagere area have been completely destroyed along with the goods.

Meanwhile, soldiers and police men have been drafted to the area at the moment in an attempt to manage the situation.

Speaking to newsmen on the incident, Imam Muhammed Basir, the Senior Special Assistant to the Osun State Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola on Arewa Matter, said the situation has taken a very dangerous dimension.

While confirming that one person was shot dead, Bashir also disclosed that reports from the state claimed that more than three persons had been killed.

He called for more deployment of security agencies from Osogbo to intervene since the situation seemed beyond the Divisional Police unit.

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Bellerin: The Entire Arsenal Squad Is With Wenger

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Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin insists Arsene Wenger has the full backing of the team after their shameful exit in the champions league.

Arsenal exited the UCL round of 16 after losing 10-2 on aggregate following a 5-1 second leg loss to Bayern Munich at the Emirates.

The Gunners were 1-0 up going into the break, only for the game to change after Koscielny was sent off.

Wenger’s men were hit with five goals and even though there are calls for the frenchman to exit the club, Bellerin would like him to continue.

“The whole team is behind the manager. He’s the one who has made the team work,” said Bellerin, who was lured from Barcelona as a teenager by Wenger in 2011.

“In football, sometimes you’re high and sometimes you experience lows. Now is a low point for us but we only have to look at ourselves to do something.

“With the help of everyone, we can make it through. We need to just forget tonight [Tuesday], focus on the next game and a competition that the club usually does well in.

“We just need to go for it and try to finish the season well.”

Asked if he wants Wenger to remain next season, Bellerin replied: “Of course. It’s as simple as that, especially for me. He’s the one who gave me my chance since day one.

“He’s played a big part in making me the player that I am, and there are loads of players in the dressing room who will be in the same position as me. We all back him and of course we want him to stay.”

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Bellerin: The Entire Arsenal Squad Is With Wenger

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Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin insists Arsene Wenger has the full backing of the team after their shameful exit in the champions league.

Arsenal exited the UCL round of 16 after losing 10-2 on aggregate following a 5-1 second leg loss to Bayern Munich at the Emirates.

The Gunners were 1-0 up going into the break, only for the game to change after Koscielny was sent off.

Wenger’s men were hit with five goals and even though there are calls for the frenchman to exit the club, Bellerin would like him to continue.

“The whole team is behind the manager. He’s the one who has made the team work,” said Bellerin, who was lured from Barcelona as a teenager by Wenger in 2011.

“In football, sometimes you’re high and sometimes you experience lows. Now is a low point for us but we only have to look at ourselves to do something.

“With the help of everyone, we can make it through. We need to just forget tonight [Tuesday], focus on the next game and a competition that the club usually does well in.

“We just need to go for it and try to finish the season well.”

Asked if he wants Wenger to remain next season, Bellerin replied: “Of course. It’s as simple as that, especially for me. He’s the one who gave me my chance since day one.

“He’s played a big part in making me the player that I am, and there are loads of players in the dressing room who will be in the same position as me. We all back him and of course we want him to stay.”

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In Lagos: Governor Ambode Swears In Three New Judges

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Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State today (Wednesday) swore in three new judges into the State Judiciary.

During the swearing in ceremony, the governor charged them to maintain a high standard of professional competence and integrity to be able to dispense justice to all manners of people without fear or favour, affection or ill will.

The new judges are former Director of the State’s Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Idowu Alakija; former Chief Registrar, High Court of Lagos State, Olugbemiga Ogundare; and former Deputy Registrar of the Court, Serifat Solebo.

Speaking at the Banquet Hall of Lagos House in Ikeja, venue of the ceremony, Governor Ambode said the swearing in of the judges, which was the first of his administration, signified another milestone in his commitment to enhance the quality of life of the people through a justice administration system that is just and fair.

He said: “I congratulate the newly appointed judges for being adjudged fit and proper persons to be on the respected higher bench of the busiest and most vibrant State judiciary in the country.

“In the end, we hope to bequeath a more vibrant and qualitative judiciary and justice sector fit for the 21st century and beyond. It is also my hope that with the caliber and qualities of these new learned personalities, our bench will be further enriched to effectively discharged its constitutional functions and deliver hope and justice to our people.

“My lords, may I remind you that by these appointments, your conducts and carriage will become subject of public scrutiny. You must therefore maintain a high standard of professional competence and integrity to be able to dispense justice to all manners of people without fear or favour, affection or ill will.”

Their swearing in would bring to 60 the number of high court judges.

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In Lagos: Governor Ambode Swears In Three New Judges

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Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State today (Wednesday) swore in three new judges into the State Judiciary.

During the swearing in ceremony, the governor charged them to maintain a high standard of professional competence and integrity to be able to dispense justice to all manners of people without fear or favour, affection or ill will.

The new judges are former Director of the State’s Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Idowu Alakija; former Chief Registrar, High Court of Lagos State, Olugbemiga Ogundare; and former Deputy Registrar of the Court, Serifat Solebo.

Speaking at the Banquet Hall of Lagos House in Ikeja, venue of the ceremony, Governor Ambode said the swearing in of the judges, which was the first of his administration, signified another milestone in his commitment to enhance the quality of life of the people through a justice administration system that is just and fair.

He said: “I congratulate the newly appointed judges for being adjudged fit and proper persons to be on the respected higher bench of the busiest and most vibrant State judiciary in the country.

“In the end, we hope to bequeath a more vibrant and qualitative judiciary and justice sector fit for the 21st century and beyond. It is also my hope that with the caliber and qualities of these new learned personalities, our bench will be further enriched to effectively discharged its constitutional functions and deliver hope and justice to our people.

“My lords, may I remind you that by these appointments, your conducts and carriage will become subject of public scrutiny. You must therefore maintain a high standard of professional competence and integrity to be able to dispense justice to all manners of people without fear or favour, affection or ill will.”

Their swearing in would bring to 60 the number of high court judges.

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All The Latest Football Transfer News And Rumors From Around The World

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Italy

Alex Sanchez looks certain to leave the Emirates stadium this summer, and Italian champions Juventus have already made contact with the Arsenal hierarchy about a potential transfer. (Corriere dello Sport)

 Juve have also expressed an interest in Lazio’s Senegalese striker Keita Balde, a target for Manchester United. With the 22-year-old free to leave for nothing at the end of next season, I Biancocelesti might struggle to get the €30-35million they believe he is worth. (Calciomercato)

If the Red Devils are to secure their main attacking target this summer, Antoine Griezmann, they will likely have to pay the Frenchman’s release clause of €100million. (Corriere dello Sport)

 

Meanwhile, Jose Mourinho’s side have taken 17-year-old wonderkid Pierpaolo D’Errico on trial. The youngster scored a hat-trick in his first friendly match for the club’s under-18s. (Gianluca Di Marzio)

Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has fuelled the rumours that he will leave Stamford Bridge at the end of the season after providing an ambiguous answer to a question about his future. (Sky Italia)

Franck Kessie’s agent does not want his client to make the switch to Roma this summer, despite the club already reaching an agreement with Atalanta. Kessie is reportedly a Chelsea transfer target, and is also on the radar of a number of European clubs, including Manchester United. (L’Eco di Bergamo)

Liverpool’s Emre Can and Mahmoud Dahoud, who is also reported to be a transfer target for the Reds, are both on the shopping list of Juventus as they look to bolster their midfield options. (Il Bianco Nero)

Spain

David De Gea has told friends that he will be leaving Manchester United this summer. The 26-year-old stopper is reportedly unhappy in Manchester and wants a return to Spain, with Real Madrid known to consider De Gea their number one goalkeeping target. (Mega TV)

Juventus have been closely monitoring the progress of Athletic Bilbao’s forward Iñaki Williams. Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund are also thought to be admirers of the 22-year-old Spaniard. (Deia)

France

West Ham United are keen on Saint-Etienne’s right-back Kevin Malcuit, who is also of interest to Manchester United. The 25-year old was the subject of an unsuccessful bid from the Hammers in January, and it is thought the club will be back in for the Frenchman in the summer. (Le10Sport)

European champions Real Madrid have joined Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United in the race to sign Monaco’s exciting young midfielder Bernardo Silva. United are thought to have an option to sign the 22-year-old, but the player himself is very enthusiastic about a potential move to the Bernabeu. (Le10Sport)

Former Juve player Patrice Evra has urged his current club Marseille to sign his former teammate Mario Mandzukic. “Mario is an incredible striker who would be very successful at Marseille. This guy knows how to fight, that’s exactly what OM needs,” he said. (BeIn Sports)

Germany

Bayern Munich manager Carlo Ancelotti has denied that the German club are considering selling or loaning out Portuguese midfielder Renato Sanches. The 19-year-old has made just seven starts in all competitions for the Bundesliga giants this term. (Sport Bild)

Portugal

Porto’s 25-year-old midfielder Danilo Pereira is attracting the interest of both Liverpool and Manchester United, with the two Premier League clubs sending scouts to watch the Portugal international during the Primeira Liga club’s recent 7-0 demolition of Nacional. (A Bola)

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Chelsea To Reward Nemanja Matic With A New Contract

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Chelsea are in the process of negotiating a new contract for midfielder Nemanja Matic, according to the Daily Mirror.

The 28-year-old has been a rock at the base of the Chelsea midfield this season as the west Londoners have roared towards the Premier League title.

Chelsea re-signed Matic, who has been their player from August 2009 to January 2011, from Portuguese giants Benfica for £21million three years ago and handed him a five-and-a-half year deal.

Matic has made 28 appearances for Antonio Conte’s side this season.

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Djinee: ”Ego” Crooner To Perform Live At Freedom Hall On Friday

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”Ego” Crooner, Djinee To Perform Live At Freedom Hall On Friday (10.03.17)

Freedom Hall Live is back again with live music, spoken word, poetry and dance performances.

The new edition celebrating the freedom month will feature Djinee as the top performer of the night.

“Ego” crooner Djinee who took a brief hiatus from the music industry returned in November 2016 with a lovers’ anthem, “Shout out to my lover” produced by Cohbams, Gray Jones and Djinee​ himself which dominated airplay especially during the valentine season will be headlining the live music concert on Friday 10th March.

Other acts scheduled to perform include Nosa, Maka, Oyinda, Trex and more talented artists.

The singer who has been quietly performing with his band these past few years believes it is time to share some beautiful music he has been working on over the years with his fans and lovers of music.

Djinee as part of his comeback into the music scene launched his website – www.iamdjinee.com which features all the latest newsLive  of the singer. He is already working on his next single and video which will be released in a few weeks’ time.

Venue: Executive Spot, Glover Court, Ikoyi Lagos

Time: 7pm

Date: 10th March 2017''Ego'' Crooner, Djinee To Perform Live At Freedom Hall (10.03.17)

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Pep Guardiola Admits He Would Like To Sign English Players But They Are Too Overpriced

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Pep Guardiola is keen to add some English talent to his squad in the summer, reports the Daily Mail.

City are reportedly interested in Tottenham left back Danny Rose, Dele Alli and Sunderland’s Jordan Pickford.

“I am really impressed with how many good English players your country has,” said Guardiola.

“Tottenham players; the English players are all amazing. I would like English players because they know the league and that is much better.”

‘Chelsea players as well, like Gary Cahill, but not so many others. People don’t believe me but I would like them. When I was in Barcelona and Germany I liked to play with the locals, it’s special.

‘Sometimes it is not possible. The market is the market. That’s why the club has worked with the academy for a long time to be thinking about the next years —with me or without me. Hopefully with me. I’d like to enjoy these four or five guys, growing and playing with them.’

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Celtic Goalkeeper Craig Gordon Signs New Three-year Contract

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Celtic goalkeeper Craig Gordon has signed a new three-year contract

Craig Gordon committed himself to Celtic despite being wanted by Premier League leaders Chelsea in the January window.

The 34-year-old shot-stopper has been in superb form this season with 22 clean sheets and this week he has extended his original contract, after joining almost three years ago.

The Scotland internationalist said: “It’s taken a little while after the interest in the January window but it’s good to finally get it done and concentrate on the rest of the season.

“It was quite stop-start, there was a lot of things going on within the club, it wasn’t a continuous thing, it wasn’t like we were talking about it for months. There were two or three occasions when we sat down and talked about it, it was fairly straight forward in the end, I wanted to stay.”

Gordon’s Celtic career looked in doubt in August when Brendan Rodgers signed his former Swansea goalkeeper, Dorus de Vries, from Nottingham Forest.

De Vries went into the team for five matches but Gordon won his place back and has kept it ever since.

The former Hearts and Sunderland player said: “I think it’s the same for every player when a new manager comes in, you want to prove your worth to the team. You also want to stay in the team and it’s taken a little while for me to do that and to be able to adapt to the way he wants me to play.

“Thankfully I’ve been able to do that and hopefully I’ll be able to continue to do that over the next three years.

“Hopefully that’s not the end either, I’m hoping to play on as long as I possibly can. There may be one contract beyond this but it’s good for the next three years to know that stability is there and I’m going to be here fighting for trophies.”

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Osinbajo At 60: The Meaning Of Inspiration – Lao Conde

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Osinbajo At 60: The Meaning Of Inspiration, By Lao Conde

“I believe Nigeria can be served well, that is why I am in politics.” – Yemi Osinbajo, SAN.

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Whichever way you dice it, the way we live will represent something, whether exemplary or unideal. Professor Yemi Osinbajo turns 60 today and I testify that his life continues to represent the meaning of inspiration. And inspiration, when you look at it comes in a package. Indeed it is my view that when you observe the vice president very well, few things really matter more than these to him – the fear of God and humility, family, talent, motivation, courage, grace, patience and hard work. And herein lies the package of inspiration.

This piece was written by Lao Conde. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

Let us start with his godly devotion to family.

Ambassador Yusuf Maitama Sule, the statesman and orator of note certainly has a very high opinion of both President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo. At least twice, in public, for instance, the Kano-born diplomat and politican has commended what he describes as the high moral standards and scrupples of the presidential duo. Once in Kano in 2015, and a few weeks ago here in Abuja, the former Nigeria Permanent Representative to the United Nations said publicly that President Buhari and his VP are the two political leaders of the day that are well known as very faithful husbands and outstanding men of the family.

He said they are both men of integrity, and sufficiently disciplined, that they take their oaths, including the marital one, seriously, leaving no room, in his words, for “girlfriends.”

Later, ‘Pastor’ Osinbajo himself, during a sermon, explained the reason why he cannot cheat on his wife, as being due to the fear of God! It is that fear of God that one has come to see as the ground norm in the life of Nigeria’s number two man, who is presently Acting President. And good Lord, that inspires in a deep and profound manner.

The vice president considers his wife an important source of counsel, and is a great advocate of the nuclear family, emphasising the kind of love and affection that should circulate in the family. His devotion to his family is evidence that he truly ranks the family high. He lovingly calls his wife “Dolly”, his son “Skipo”, i.e. Skipper, and the way he dotes on his daughters would make one, without a daughter, wish to have one too!

In fact you could conclude that his deep appreciation of the centrality of family to life comes from his own parents. Besides the inspiring story of his late dad as a stickler for principles and integrity, you need to watch how Prof. interacts with his mum. The other day at the praise fellowship in Aguda House, Mama, Mrs Olubisi Osinbajo, referred to his children – and at least three of them were in attendance that day – as “my babies” regaling us with how she brought them up on the inerrant word of God. You could not but be inspired.

What you see in the man we call Pastor-Prof, is a rare boldness, in this culture, to say things such as this: that when a man is married to a woman, that marriage has indeed made them become one. He advances the love that should exist between married people beyond rhetorics, by living it personally. In a culture where it is still a debate whether the wife should be the next of kin to the husband, this tone is indeed inspiring, as it is courageous.

And yet, you will discover that Osinbajo takes the family focus further to relationships with his siblings and other relatives. You cannot but love how he goes in and out with his siblings, and the jollity of it that extends farther to all their children.

Talking about talent, it is very easy to observe the sheer brilliance of many of the people the vice president surrounds himself with. He has packed his team with ebullient young men and women with really abundant talents and gifts. Struck by this, I once engaged him in a chat about one of the many outstanding young people around him, and you could see his fascination with talented young people as he described the young woman “as bright as a button.”

There are many young and “not too young people” that feature in every department of his professional and pastoral lives. And in order to attract and retain talent, it must mean there is concomitant inspiration.

Yes indeed, I testify that this man inspires. Not just by the words of encouragement that he throws in here and there, but even through the challenging tasks that he drops on people’s laps, demonstrating confidence in their ability, at times when even they might be laggard about it. One of his aides remembers how once, in the very first couple months in Aso Rock, Prof had delegated a speaking engagement to him, which he (the aide) was simply unsure of pulling through well, considering the audience and importance of the event. Calling him by his first name, the vice president simply said “you are a pastor, you know how to do it.” That was his riposte to the aide’s anxiety.

While he is fascinated by talent, and gifted people, his heart is ultimately and easily won by hard work and a commitment to getting things done, despite the obstacles and roadblocks that often line the paths of positive outcomes and productivity. So that when you hear and read reports testifying to his work ethic and personal grit, resolve and a rather uncommonly hectic schedule, it is the drive of hard work that is behind these.

One aide recalls that the vice president once told me him that hard work and more hard work is where things happen, where impact is made and where true and desired change takes place. His partners at the law firm he led before he was nominated talk of case preparations that continue till the wee hours and court appearances a few hours thereafter. His brother, the former Ogun State Attorney-General, Akin Osinbajo, told the story of how he was in Abuja preparing for a case the next day and was still up past 2 a.m. reviewing the court matter before he was called on the phone that the then General Muhammadu Buhari would be nominating him as his running mate. For real, when hard-work is blessed with results, it must produce inspiration in the hard worker and those around him or her – thats the story of the life of Yemi Osinbajo!

Motivation also matters to PYO, as many of his associate refer to him online. This is why his loyalty to those he chooses to serve remain unquestionable. Public service for him is what it is: service that goes with a whole bunch of sacrifice. For him, service is by no means for personal aggrandisement. It is that motivation to serve that provided the audacity to go after and remove erring judges and magistrates in Lagos State when he was Attorney-General. He took the offer to be a cabinet member in Lagos at the dicey transition point from military to civil rule, because he wanted to provide important service in the area of justice delivery, if one could say that. Not many would dare the judicial reforms he got done in Lagos, because they would be afraid and fearful that their own flanks might get exposed in the process. But when the motivation is right, it is easy to do what’s right.

In contrast, in Nigeria of today, we have to grapple with the issue of mindless corruption and a massive greed that causes people to continue to steal from our commonwealth until they loose their humanity and are shod of any semblance of patriotism or the quest to serve. Today, people seek public office merely to serve the self, and making the few who really want to serve look stupid and foolish. It is to change this that Nigerians voted in the Buhari/Osinbajo ticket, and this is the path of inspiration for a new Nigeria that we all must build in our own enlightened self-interest.

Let me conclude this brief birthday tribute to ‘Pastor-Prof’ by talking about the attitude of humility and patience. The very idea of a humble conduct, while it is widely commended, is largely ignored in reality, including on this shores. And people who carry themselves without chips on their shoulders certainly get overlooked and even undermined often. It takes some depth of patience and endurance to actually ignore the condescending attitude of society to humble conduct. But Prof’s life is evidence that it is possible to be humble and really advance and attain great heights. His capacity to make peace with people who deride him, and those who sneer at him, to his face, is itself a grace that few people have.

However what it shows, besides offering hope that a saner society is possible here is that Pastor-Prof surely understands and obeys the teachings of his Lord and Saviour, Jesus. He restated his sermon on the Contrarian Gospel recently, enunciating the point that everything Jesus stands for, even his death and his love, are all evidence that the gospel of Christ is one contrary to our flesh and human reflexes. Look at the life of Yemi Osinbajo again, and you will see clearly that he has been blessed as he conducts himself in line with the tenets of that gospel, and with an unusual humility which is rare in these clime and time. It was Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State that said it recently and said it so well that: the vice president asks for nothing, but gets everything!

What a testament to humility, patience and grace under pressure. This man Osinbajo is an inspiration to many, including me. Happy 60th birthday to the acting President!

Lao Conde, who writes from Abuja, is an associate of the vice president

This piece was written by Lao Conde. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

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Antonio Conte Could Sign New Chelsea Contract ‘In Matter Of Days’

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Antonio Conte could sign a new contract at Chelsea in the coming days but has other offers on the table.

Chelsea want Cone at all costs and they have been offering him a renewed contract and his representatives believe he will sign it.

Inter Milan have contacted Conte’s representatives as to his availability – and he could be an option if things go badly with Stefano Pioli, who still has 14 months left on his contract.

Conte also is one of the candidates for Barcelona and it has been reported that he’s been contacted by representatives of AC Milan’s Chinese owners.

Antonio Conte’s Chelsea record…

Premier League games: 27

Wins: 21

Defeats: 3

Goals scored per game: 2.11

FA Cup: Undefeated (play Man Utd in QF on Monday)

League Cup: Round of 16 – beaten by West Ham

Chelsea face a crucial game against Manchester United on Monday, with a place in the FA Cup semi-finals up for grabs. If Conte were to sign a new deal before then it could provide a timely boost ahead of the quarter-final meeting at Stamford Bridge.

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