Moyes: Fellaini Is Important To United

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Former Manchester United manager, David Moyes has called Marouane Fellaini a modern day footballer who is important to United.

The former Everton midfielder was brought to United when Moyes joined and was heavily criticised for the move.

However, Fellaini has developed into a player that has become key to United under Van Gaal and Mourinho.

Moyes told ESPN FC: “Well, bringing Marouane Fellaini was part of what I hoped he would come to United and play in different games.

“He was never someone who was going to play in all the games at United. He was someone that was there, his size is a problem to the opposition. It’s also something which helps you. Manchester United you’ve seen many times now have used him a more advanced role.

“I used to get criticism at Everton because we played him there. He’s got brilliant chest control — taking it down with his chest, he’s as good as anyone in the world actually and he’s a good footballer, but he was never somebody who was going to come and play every single game.

“If you look at the games that he played under Louis van Gaal and now under Jose Mourinho, he’s vital.

“He’s a modern day footballer, he covers a lot of ground, he’s a decent passer without being a great passer, he can get you some goals, he helps you out in both boxes with his stature and he was something which we didn’t have at Manchester United and he was a player who was brought in to add to the squad.”

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Nigeria Moves Up In August FIFA Rankings, Now 6th In Africa (Full List)

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The Super Eagles of Nigeria have climbed up one step and sixth in Africa based on the latest Fifa rankings released on Thursday, August 10, 2017.

See the full list as published by FIFA official website

Nigeria moved from last month’s 39th place in the world, while they maintained their position on the continent behind Egypt, Senegal, Congo DR, Tunisia, and Cameroon respectively.

Also making progress on the rankings is Cameroon, whom Nigeria play over two legs in the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers next month.

The Indomitable Lions have also climbed one spot to 37th in the world and fifth on the continent.

Both teams will clash next month in crucial World Cup qualifiers.

While on the global stage, Brazil reclaimed the top spot, with the reigning World champions, Germany dropping to second and Argentina remain in third.

Switzerland climbed to fourth – their highest ever position, while Poland, Portugal, Chile, Colombia, Belgium and France complete the top 10.

Jamaica, Concacaf Gold Cup runners-up made the biggest movers in terms of points – gain 172, but Namibia are the biggest movers by rankings – up 20 places to 136th.

The next Fifa/Coca-Cola World ranking is expected to be published on September 14, 2017.

See the full list as published by FIFA official website

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Tite: Neymar Can Challenge Messi And Ronaldo For Ballon d’Or

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Brazil head coach, Tite believes Neymar can be as good as Messi and Ronaldo and battle the duo for the ballon d’or.

Neymar quit Barcelona for Paris Saint-Germain and many has stated his desire to step out of Messi’s shadow as a reason.

Tite has now backed the Brazil star to become a real contender for the personal accolade that has been dominated by Messi and Ronaldo.

“There are three players fighting for that position: Cristiano, Messi and Neymar,” said Tite.

“Cristiano and Messi are from a different generation – and Neymar will get there. That will depend on his performances, not on whether he plays with Messi.

“The essence is that he likes to play football. The important thing is that he is well and adapted in his new club. Values ​​and money do not change anything. He went to another club, as he said, to seek new perspectives.”

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“He Grabbed My Ass,” Says Taylor Swift While Testifying Against “Sacked” DJ In Groping Lawsuit

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For the first time on Thursday, US Pop singer Taylor Swift took to the witness stand, delivering firm and spirited testimony in a civil trial, describing as “horrifying and shocking” a June 2013 incident when a former radio DJ David Mueller allegedly groped her during a meet and greet.

“What Mr. Mueller did was very intentional,” Swift said as she answered questions from Gabriel McFarland, an attorney for David Mueller, the former radio host.

“It was a definite grab. A very long grab,” added the 27-year-old, who is suing Mr Mueller, 55, over the alleged incident, which he denies.

“He grabbed my ass underneath my skirt,” she said.

The singer, who was responding to questions from Mr Mueller’s lawyer, added: “He stayed latched on to my bare ass cheek as I lurched away from him. [His hand] didn’t let go.

“It was a very shocking thing. I had never dealt with something like this before.”

The alleged assault is said to have occurred in 2013, during a Denver stopover on Taylor Swift’s Red tour. Mr Mueller, then a host on the top-rated radio station KYGO, had been invited to meet her before the show.

Ms Swift complained to KYGO and the station fired Mr Mueller two days later.

Mr Mueller then sued the singer, saying that Ms Swift’s allegation cost him his job. She countersued one month later, describing the groping incident as “completely intentional”.

The trial is being held in a federal court in Denver because Swift and Mueller live in different states and the damages exceed $75,000. It is expected to last about two weeks.

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Allegri: I Considered Retirement After UCL Final

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Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri has revealed he considered retiring after his side lost in UCL final for the second time in three years.

The final at Cardiff was level at halftime, but Juventus lost the match 4-1 , after a stunning second half from Madrid.

Back in 2015, Allegri led Juventus to the final, but fell to a 3-1 defeat to Barcelona.

“When I got home after that defeat, I had to think hard about whether to continue. I thought about why I had become a manager in the first place.

“I do this because I love teaching. It is truly the joy of my life. I like making players better and smarter.

“So when I thought about this Juventus squad, my decision became quite personal. I know I still have a lot to prove. And I know I still have a lot to teach. So that night, before I went to bed, I decided that if the club was on board with my strategy and we could move on together, then I would stay on.”

“For me, I look at Paulo Dybala and Gigi Buffon. In a way, they are the symbol of this team,” he continued. “I see Dybala, like a bright boy about to start his first year in school.

“Buffon, with a World Cup, is about to get his master’s degree. One with his career ahead of him and one near the end. One who wants to show that he can be one of the greats in Europe. One who is already a great, but wants to end his legacy on top.

“I know we can shed the scabs from Cardiff. I know we can have a great season. I know we can have a great Champions League campaign.”

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Koeman: Barkley Has No Offers

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Ronald Koeman has confirmed that Ross Barkley will remain at Everton, despite his contract situation, due to no interest in the midfielder.

Koeman had previously made it known that Barkley would be sold unless he extends his contract, which will expire at the end of the season.

However, due to a lack of interest in him, Koeman will be keeping the midfielder who is recovering from an injury.

“I don’t have any update,” said Koeman. “There is no offer on the table for Ross, that means he will stay at Everton.

“The player has a one year contract and there is no offer. Maybe the club will not accept an offer because he is a good, young, English player. If somebody wants to buy Ross it’s a big deal.

“If there is no interest then he will stay and be part of the team. I respect every personal ambition of every player. He is still training with Everton, he is part of the team and training in a good way.”

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Ozobulu Killings: Blood And Blood Money In The Church

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Ozobulu Killings: Blood And Blood Money In The Church, By Bámidélé Adémólá-Olátéjú

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Alloysius Ikegwuonu, alias ‘Bishop’, has built at least five churches, roads, schools, and even a bank. He has bought cars for parish priests who cannot plead ignorance of his alleged involvement in the drug trade. Bishop got a hint of the drug feud that led to the killings at Ozobulu and left. Those after him killed members of his family, innocent worshippers and wounded many more and the church he built and donated.

This piece was written by Bámidélé Adémólá-Olátéjú. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of

The Ozobulu Killings is hardly any surprise because the enemies of God and man have long found refuge in the church. It is confounding that a people reported as the most religious also top the list of the most corrupt people on earth. These and many more are obvious contradictions in our sociology that point to the anomalies in our individual and collective lives as a people. Some years ago, Nigerians were cited as the happiest people in the world and among the world’s poorest. How can a people be poor and still be the happiest? How can a nation be the most religious and also one of the most corrupt? The rational explanation lies in our perception of the Christian and Muslim God, as an Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) – the God of transactions, the God of give and take.

We grow godless with the same alarming rate as the growth of churches and mosques in every city block in the country. Drug lords, treasury looters, ritualists, armed robbers, murderers and every shade of criminals, fund our religious spaces with tithes and offerings, while poverty and misery continue their astronomical rise. Religion is dead in Nigeria. What is practised and branded as religion in the country is a farce. Our religious spaces are a marketplace of fraud. The killings at Ozobulu once again exposes us as a people with no scruples. An Ozobulu will happen when we have no revulsion at accepting a church built and donated by a known and celebrated drug baron. Ozobulu is what we get when we think the blood of Jesus will cleanse all manners of money, including those obtained by spilling human blood. We are the one of the most corrupt people on earth because religion, as it is practised among us, has lost its bite. Clerics have become co-exploiters of the people. Prosperity preaching has taken control of the pulpits, while radical Islamism with promises of a better heaven is the menu served from the minbar in mosques. In the South, clerics preach to the disillusioned poor that money by all means is king and it is better for their congregants to die trying, while the clerics in the North collaborate with treasury looters, encouraging them to feed crumbs to the poor in the guise alms and charity.

How did we get to this sorry station? We need not look too far, our descent into the moral gorge we have found ourselves is an extension of our rentier mentality. The frontiers of American style pentecostalism has been extended and localised well beyond the boundaries of exploitative capitalism, using religious license aided by unreason. Religious life today is no longer about humanism and salvation, but about material accumulation and financial prosperity. A Nigerian will cheat, exploit his kin, cut corners, scam another and when he makes it through these unwholesome means, he sees it as a prayer answered! Of course, the front rows of the mosque and the pews of the church will be reserved for him as long as he brings fat tithes and offerings. The virtues of character, righteousness, honesty, integrity, sacrifice, tolerance, modesty and moral goodness are no longer preached. When emphasis is on money and pleasure, we cannot expect good outcomes from our places of worship. Unfortunately, we are not a nation of laws.

In a nation full of sacred cows, where there are no consequences for actions, we should expect more Ozobulu to happen. Prosperity preachers will continue to feast on the ignorance and gullibility of their congregants. They will continue to capitalise on their bleak socio-economic conditions to rob them of their faith and money. As long as social injustice, fading social mobility, and limited economic opportunity pervade the Homeland, the poor will continue to buy the gospel of miracles, wealth, power, position and privilege, and pastorpreneurs will keep buying more jets and be counted among the richest.

Evil and criminality is as old as man but the prophets of old confronted the socio-political and economic issues of their time with righteousness and an uprightness that is now very absent. Never did they compromise with evil, regardless of its colourations. God does not strike a bargain with criminals. Criminals who support religion as a way of laundering their moral deficiencies are lying to themselves. Building churches, making huge cash donations and sponsoring people on pilgrimage cannot atone for premeditated crimes against thousands of people.

As for the priests of Baal who squeeze away morality from the gospel, they are more dangerous than the criminals they aid and abet. Material provisions by a criminal cannot serve as the basis for determining faith and devotion to the body of Christ.

The Ozobulu killings is a wake up call to all of us. We must reclaim the values of religion as it was, before the Pentecostal invasion. If we must halt the progression of values decay affecting us, God-fearing religious leaders must call out those who pollute their ranks. Nigeria’s redemption must start from the doorsteps of churches and mosques. May the soul of those killed, find peaceful rest and may their traumatised families have the strength, times like this demand.

Bámidélé Adémólá-Olátéjú a farmer, youth advocate and political analyst, writes this weekly column, “Bamidele Upfront” for PREMIUM TIMES. Follow me on Twitter @olufunmilayo

This piece was written by Bámidélé Adémólá-Olátéjú. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of

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Klopp: Manchester City Are Title Favourites

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Just a day before the start of the Premier League, Jurgen Klopp has picked Manchester City as clear title favourites.

The new season starts tomorrow with Arsenal taking on Leicester and Liverpool playing Watford on Saturday.

Klopp has high hopes for Liverpool, but is realistically backing City due to the addition of Jesus and some defenders.

“The favourites must be Manchester City actually,” Klopp said to DAZN. “They played some incredible football last year and had just a couple of problems.

“They are definitely the favourites. Manchester City is in attack mode, that is obvious.

“They already had an incredible team last season and then Jesus joined them and I thought, ‘Oh my goodness’.

“I mean he is very young and really strong. Incredible player – and now they got some defenders as well. They will be interesting to watch.

“I’m obviously wishing for the highest possible finish. Manchester United will want to strike back. We will see how Chelsea will do without Costa. [Alvaro] Morata is a great signing but they also lost [Nemanja] Matic. We will see. They still have a pretty great team.

“We will have to align. Not subordinate and then on the specific days [against the league’s best teams] we have to be there and try to beat them, but also try to get as many points as possible out of the other matches.”

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Another Kidnappers’ Den Discovered Near Ikeja (PHOTOS)

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A suspected kidnappers’ den has been discovered at Ile-Zik on the Lagos/Abeokuta Expressway – an area very close to Ikeja, the Lagos state capital.

This is coming barely a few days after two suspected kidnappers were set ablaze when residents of Obadeyi-Ijaiye end of the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway discovered a suspected kidnappers’ den in the area.

‘Kidnappers’ den’ discovered near Ikeja

‘Kidnappers’ den’ discovered near Ikeja: Photo credit: TheCable

It is understood that security operatives while combing the hideout found human parts concealed in some sachets.

Scores of tunnels were also seen in the area which is adjacent to a perimeter fence of the Murtala Muhammed international airport.

2 Set Ablaze As Residents Uncover Kidnappers’ Den In Lagos

Based on reports, a hawker who fell into the hands of the gang raised the alarm after managing to escape.

Three suspects have been arrested, while a sharp knife was found on one of the suspects said to have been posing as a mad man.

One of the arrested suspects

One of the arrested suspects: Photo Credit: TheCable

The suspects are currently being interrogated at Isokoko police station.

It was gathered that there are at least eight patrol vans of the police at the location, while a huge crowd converged on the place, making it difficult for free movement.

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360Hawt: DJ Coublon – My Way Ft. Iyanya

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Premium Hit Maker “DJ Coublon” known for his magical touch on records from Kiss Daniel, Tekno, Sugar Boy, 9ice and others joined forces with the expertise of Mavin Records macho man and star singer “Iyanya” to birth his debut single as a music producer.

The record titled “My Way” produced by DJ Coublon is set to serve a feeling of fresh breath in the entertainment world at large.

Words can not give an account of what you are about to listen to!

Listen and Enjoy!


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Boko Haram: Scores Feared Dead, Countless Homes Burnt In Fresh Adamawa Attack

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Scores of persons have been feared dead on Thursday in a fresh attack by Boko Haram Islamists in Ghumbili community in the Madagali Local Government Area of Adamawa.

The attack is coming barely a few days after a similar incident occured in a neighbouring village in the Local Government, known as Mildu, where seven people were killed by the insurgents.

Speaking on the recent attack with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the Chairman of Madagali Local Government Council, Yusuf Muhammed, said it lasted from 11 p.m. on Wednesday to 3 a.m. on Thursday.

He said that the jihadists burnt no fewer than 60 houses and looted foodstuff.

“They looted foodstuff, killed livestock and burnt the village completely,” he stated.

Mr. Muhammed said that the exact number of dead and injured people had yet to be ascertained and that villagers who escaped the attack were currently taking refuge at Gulak, the headquarters of the council.

On his own part, the Spokesman of the Police Command in Adamawa, Othman Abubakar, who also confirmed the attack, said no life was lost.

He said, however, that houses were destroyed in the attack–the latest in a string of deadly blows on mainly soft targets in Nigeria’s troubled northeast.

Speaking on the development, the Executive Chairman of the Adamawa State Emergency Management Agency, Haruna Furo, said only one person was killed and that many houses were destroyed.

In recent times, fighters of the dreaded Islamic cult have raised the level of onslaught in its eight-year bloody insurgency that has claimed thousands of lives.

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Borussia Dortmund Reject Barcelona’s €100m Offer For Ousmane Dembele

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Borussia Dortmund have informed the Frankfurt Stock Exchange that they have rejected an offer from Barcelona for Ousmane Dembele.

Dortmund boss Peter Bosz admitted earlier today he was unaware of the whereabouts of the player. The Frenchman missed first-team training today and Bosz revealed the forward had not answered his phone when contacted by the club.

It is understood Dembélé went to Paris on Thursday evening to visit friends and family, and was awaiting news as the clubs continue to negotiate the fee.

Talks have been continuing for several days, with Dortmund insistent they would not accept less than €150m for the player they signed from Rennes last summer for a 10th of that cost.

Dembélé was pictured in the official team photo on Wednesday but the Dortmund manager, Peter Bosz, said the player had failed to show up the following day.

“He wasn’t there this morning and if I am completely honest I have to say I have no idea why he wasn’t,” Bosz said. “We have tried to reach him but we have not managed to. I hope nothing bad has happened to him. He wasn’t there.”
Asked if it was linked to Barcelona’s interest, Bosz said: “That I do not know as I haven’t spoken to him.”

A report in the French newspaper L’Equipe claimed Dembélé will fly to Barcelona “in the coming hours” to sign a long-term contract.

Sky Sports in Germany has also reported he is set to join Ernesto Valverde’s side.Borussia Dortmund Reject Barcelona’s €100m Offer For Ousmane Dembele

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Ousmane Dembele Suspended By Borussia Dortmund

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Borussia Dortmund have just issued a statement regarding unsettled forward Ousmane Dembele, who has missed training today amid reports linking the Frenchman with a move to Barcelona.

“Ousmane Dembele today missed the BVB-training-session without any excuse. The player seems to have done that intentionally.

“Because of that behavior we will sanction him. The player is still in Dortmund. In consultation with our coach we have suspended him from all practice and match-activities until next week after our cup game.”

Dembele scored 10 goals and supplied 21 assists in 49 games for Dortmund in his debut season with the club.

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Chelsea’s Kenedy Set To Complete Newcastle Loan Move

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Newcastle are in talks with Chelsea over a season-long loan for winger Kenedy

Rafa Benitez met the Brazilian in London yesterday while he was attending the Premier League launch, and he hopes to bring him to the North East before Sunday’s opener against Tottenham.

The Brazilian was sent home from Chelsea’s pre-season tour of China after posting a disparaging video on his Instagram account.

Antonio Conte has washed his hands of the Brazil Under-20 international and has now sanctioned his departure on loan to newly promoted Newcastle.

Toon boss Rafa Benitez has made it clear he is unhappy with the club’s lack of transfers this summer.

But the former Stamford Bridge chief has had a breakthrough after snapping up the Brazilian from his old club, according to the Mirror.

Kenedy plays mainly as a left-winger but can also slot in at left-back.

He joined Chelsea in a £6.3million move from Fluminese in 2015.

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Aston Villa’s Jordan Amavi Joins Marseille On Loan

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Aston Villa defender Jordan Amavi has joined Marseille on loan with a view to a permanent deal.

The 23-year-old left-back joined Villa for £9m from Nice two years ago, but found his first-team chances limited following a knee injury.

And the arrival of Neil Taylor from Swansea at the start of this year effectively spelled the end of Amavi’s Villa career.

The Frenchman had looked set to join Sevilla on a permanent deal last month but the move fell through, reportedly due to a failed medical.

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Football Headlines: All The Latest Football News And Transfer Rumors This Evening

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  • Some senior Tottenham players have grown frustrated with the club’s stringent wage structure. It is understood that certain members of the squad are perplexed that the wage ceiling at clubs like West Ham and Crystal Palace is relatively high.
  • Jack Wilshere is set to step up his recovery by returning to action at Under-23 level as he bids to salvage his Arsenal career.


  • Celtic have continued their charm offensive with Patrick Roberts amid uncertainty over the Manchester City player’s future.


  • Ralf Rangnick has admitted Liverpool transfer target Naby Keita does have a release clause that will enable him to leave RB Leipzig for a knockdown price next summer.


  • Newcastle United have made a loan bid for Chelsea youngster Kenedy as they look to bolster their squad in time for the first game of the season.


  • Simon Grayson will lay down a marker to his Sunderland squad by giving George Honeyman another chance to impress in the first XI.


  • More new signings will have a two-pronged benefit for West Bromwich Albion, club captain Jonny Evans reckons.


  • Jordan Amavi and Leandro Bacuna are both closing in on exits from Aston Villa.
  • Sheffield United have made an approach for Wolves utility man Conor Coady.


  • Giannelli Imbula looks set to join Monaco on season-long loan early next week in a move that could spell the end of his time at Stoke City.


  • Jan Bednarek insists that Saints’ preparations for the Premier League season have not been hampered by Virgil van Dijk’s ongoing transfer saga.


  • Leonid Slutsky believes the addition of Seb Larsson ensures Hull City have the perfect blend of experience and youth.


  • Tony Mowbray is hopeful of adding a new midfielder to his Blackburn ranks as he looks to increase competition in that area of the park.


  • Swansea City are set to kick-off the new Premier League season without Gylfi Sigurdsson – regardless of whether his proposed £50m transfer to Everton goes through.


  • Lucas Piazon declared his love for Fulham after scoring on his first start since returning to the club on loan from Chelsea against Wycombe.


  • Derby County manager Gary Rowett says the club has “lots” of bids in for players as they look to add to the squad before the transfer window closes.
  • Derby County face competition from Burnley and Fulham in a bid to sign Callum Robinson from Preston North End.


  • Former Nottingham Forest defender Luke Chambers has admitted interest from his old club during the January transfer window “messed with my head”.
  • Nottingham Forest will not change their style of play or mentality as they adjust to life without Britt Assombalonga, says Mark Warburton.


  • Outgoing Middlesbrough midfielder Marten de Roon says he can’t wait to finalise his “amazing” return to Atalanta over the next 24 hours.
  • Middlesbrough are confident they have fought off late competition from Championship rivals Reading and Birmingham to sign Chelsea talent Lewis Baker on loan.


  • Peter Hartley believes the competition for places at Blackpool will help take the club forward this season.


  • Sheffield United remain hopeful of luring their top transfer targets, including Blackburn Rovers defender Darragh Leninhan and Southend captain Ryan Leonard, to Bramall Lane.


  • Hearts will begin the interview process to find Ian Cathro’s successor before the end of this week after wading through a swathe of applications for the post. Owner Ann Budge and director of football Craig Levein have been inundated with interest in the vacancy, with high profile names such as Steve McClaren, Edgar Davids and Aidy Boothroyd showing an interest.
  • Kolo Toure has been appointed as a coach with the Ivory Coast national team after his contract with Celtic expired.

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Brighton Complete Signing Of Soufyan Ahannach From Almere City

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Brighton  have now completed the signing of winger Soufyan Ahannach from Dutch Eerste Divisie side Almere City

The 21-year-old joins on a three-year contract on undisclosed terms.

Manager Chris Hughton said, “We are pleased to welcome Soufyan to the club; he’s a young player with a lot of talent and good potential.

“He’s has done very well playing senior football in Holland in recent seasons and we look forward to seeing more of what Soufyan is capable of over the coming weeks and months.”

Ahhanach made his debut Almere as a 16-year-old, and progressed into one of they key players as he struck 32 goals in 97 appearances.

Hughton has now brought in eleven players over the course of the summer following the club’s promotion from the Championship last season.

The confirmation of Ahannach’s arrival comes after the club agreed a fee with Club Brugge for Colombia winger Jose Izquierdo while reports also suggest they have made a move for Raphael Dwamena of FC Zurich.

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Report: Chelsea Bid £35m For Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

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Chelsea have reportedly made a £35m bid for Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

The 23-year-old is in the final year of his contract and the Daily Star say he has been offered a new deal.

However, Chelsea are said to have made a move for the England international while there is also interest from Liverpool.

Oxlade-Chamberlain is the final year of his contract and is demanding a wage increase from £65,000 to £120,000, which is way off what Arsenal are reportedly prepared to give him.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger however lavished praise on the 23-year-old in his press conference on Wednesday.

“Personally, I think he is a hugely talented player,” said Wenger. “He is on the way up and he will continue to move up because that potential is there.

“He is today very conscious of his qualities as well, which he was not always, and I personally believe he will be a very great player.”

Whether Arsenal will resist a huge bid for a player who is out of contract next summer and has rarely been a regular starter remains to be seen.

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Atalanta Set To Sign Middlesbrough’s Marten De Roon For £13m

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Middlesbrough have accepted a bid of around £13m bid from Atalanta for midfielder Marten De Roon.

The Dutch player is set for a medical in Italy today.

The 26-year-old joined Middlesbrough for £12m from the Italian side but now is on the verge of returning to Atalanta.

Middlesbrough boss Garry Monk has also confirmed Marten De Roon is talking to another club, who were understand to be Atalanta.

“Nothing is 100% at this moment in time,” said Monk today. “We’ve allowed him to speak to another club and there are still some things we need to do in terms of incomings and outgoings.”

Atalanta are keen to sign de Roon and ensure he is bedded in well in advance of their new league campaign, scheduled to get under way on August 20.

De Roon joined Boro last summer and made 35 appearances in 2016/17, scoring five goals, but struggled for consistency during his Premier League baptism of fire.

But the former Heerenveen star did end the campaign strongly, scoring the winner against Sunderland in April, and previously scored a memorable last-gasp equaliser at Manchester City

Middlesbrough have spent heavily during the summer transfer window with £15m striker Britt Assombalonga heading a big list of new players.

The others include Darren Randolph, Ashley Fletcher, Martin Braithwaite, Cyrus Christie and Jonny Howson.

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Brighton Sign Club Brugge’s Colombia Winger Jose Izquierdo For Club-record Transfer Fee

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Brighton have confirmed they have agreed terms with Club Brugge for the club-record transfer of Jose Izquierdo. 

The 25-year-old has also agreed personal terms as the Seagulls break their record for the third time this summer, with the fee believed to be around £16m.

Manager Chris Hughton told the club website: “Jose is someone we have been aware of for sometime and has been one of the standout players in the Belgian league over the past three years.”

“He’s been an exciting player for Club Brugge and in the season he helped the club win the title in 2015/16, he was also Belgium’s Player of the Year. José has good experience with almost 250 senior games in both Colombia and Belgium, and has played in the Europa League, Champions League and international football, having made his debut for his national team this summer.”

Brighton open their Premier League campaign with a daunting home clash against Manchester City on Saturday.

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Philippe Coutinho Is Priceless, Says Liverpool Manager Jurgen Klopp

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Jurgen Klopp has been speaking about Philippe Coutinho after Liverpool rejected a second bid for the midfielder from Barcelona.

“From a financial standpoint, there is no price limit to let him go or a price that we are ready to give in,” Klopp told Sky Germany. “Our goal is to have the best possible team. So we want to keep our guys and add new ones. That is our plan.

“Today no player on the planet is untouchable. But a transfer is also a question of timing and if you have the opportunity and the need to react to such a transfer.

“Also you have to ask, if you have the time to react. But just because of one request of one club, we don’t have to think about that. We are not in that situation.

“Liverpool is not a club that has to sell players. That is set in stone. So what they pay in the end doesn’t matter.”

While interested in joining Barcelona, Coutinho has not agitated for a Liverpool exit and has shown no sign of doing so since the first bid was made. Klopp spoke to the forward in Hong Kong when Barcelona first formalised their interest to stress his importance to the team and reiterate the club’s determination to keep him at Anfield.

He is expected to miss the opening game of the Premier League season on Saturday, when Liverpool travel to Vicarage Road to face Watford, due to a back injury.

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Libya Begins Deportation Of 540 Nigerians Today – NAPTIP DG

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At least five hundred and forty Nigerians are set for deportation from Libya, beginning from today, August 10, an official has said yesterday.

Julie Okah-Donli, Director-General, National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), made this known on Wednesday in Osogbo, at the inauguration of the North-West Zonal Command Office of the agency.

While saying that the deportees would be transported back to Nigeria in three batches of 180 each, the NAPTIP boss added that more than 2,000 Nigerians were deported from various parts of the world from February till date, over various migration offences, including human trafficking.

Mrs. Okah-Doni disclosed that the agency had rescued and supported more than 12,000 victims of human trafficking, and also secured 325 convictions since its inception in 2003.

She decried the rising trend of deportation of Nigerians from different parts of the world, especially in Africa, and described the situation as “frightening”.

“Such massive deportations are not good for us as a people. Government at all levels must take steps to halt it by initiating measures that will reduce the vulnerability of our people to being trafficked.

“We must also strive to enlighten our people to resist the temptation to leave the country at all cost,” she said.

Mrs. Okah-Donli, who described human trafficking as a modern day slavery, urged stern measures to end it.

She reaffirmed NAPTIP’s commitment to implementing the Trafficking in Persons(Prohibition) Enforcement and Administration Act of 2015, and declared that there would be no sacred cows.

Mrs. Okah-Donli identified Osun, Ekiti and Ondo among the endemic states in trafficking in persons in Nigeria, saying all hands must be on deck to change the trend.

“Nigeria is a source, transit and destination country. Women and young girls are recruited for sexual and labour exploitation in parts of Europe, the Middle East and even within the African continent.

“This calls for concerted action by all as Nigerians cannot make meaningful progress in its human capital development index, with a sustained depletion of her young and brightest stars.”

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Beware Of Fraudsters! We Are Not Recruiting – NNPC Tells Nigerians

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The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has, for the umpteenth time, reiterated that it has not launched a recruitment campaign of any kind for now.

The latest clarification is coming on the heels of a fresh recruitment advert purportedly from the Corporation being circulated by e-mails and on various social media platforms.

Update On Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) 2017 Recruitment

A statement by the Corporation’s spokesman, Ndu Ughamadu, disclosed that the advert which is on a fake letterhead complete with NNPC logo is purportedly signed by the Group Managing Director, Dr. Maikanti Baru, and the Chief Operating Officer, Refineries, Anibor Kragha, and directs unsuspecting applicants to send their applications to a fake e-mail address:

Shedding more light on the scam, Ughamadu said another form of the scam involved text messages, e-mails, and letters inviting gullible job seekers for fake job interviews at the NNPC Towers and other locations across the country with a view to extorting money from them.

He called on members of the public, especially applicants, to discountenance any of such adverts or spurious invitations for job interviews as the Corporation was currently not recruiting, stressing that anyone who entertains such invitations does so at his or her own risk.

Ughamadu advised that anyone contacted for the purpose of the fake recruitment should not hesitate to report such invitations to relevant law enforcement agencies, adding that the Corporation would continue to engage security agencies on the scam.

He said NNPC Management under the leadership of Dr. Maikanti Baru would sustain the prevailing culture of transparency and accountability which has witnessed the conduct of open public bidding in sourcing for contractors and suppliers of goods and services for its day-to-day operations, including recruitment exercises, stressing that NNPC will advertise all vacant positions in national newspapers whenever it was ready to recruit.

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Buhari’s 2015 Campaign Official Dumps APC For PDP, Says ‘Ruling Party Has Failed Nigerians’

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Alhaji Ibrahim Al Amin, an active campaigner of President Muhammadu Buhari, during the 2015 Presidential election, has dumped the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kano State.

Ibrahim, a former Chairman of the defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) in Kano, also said he decided to dump the APC over its “inability to redeem all its campaign promises”.

Speaking with journalists in Kano, Ibrahim said his defection to the PDP was borne out his conviction that APC had not been able to fulfilled all the promises it made to electorate.

He further lamented that the President Buhari administration has marginalised the northern part of the country despite the votes they gave to him in 2015 elections.

His words: “Although I do not regret supporting and voting for Buhari, I cannot remain in the party because it is not running the country properly. I hold Buhari in high esteem but he is not in control of the present government.

“President Buhari is not in control of his government since he fell ill, and some people have taken the advantage and control the government.”

“I am highly disappointed in the APC because it has reneged on the promises it made to Nigerians. What we have been accusing other political parties of doing, the APC is now doing them.  There is poverty everywhere and the APC is not doing anything to bail-out the masses.

“I am in politics to serve my people directly or indirectly and I am not comfortable with the way the ruling party is handling the affairs of Nigerians.

“Our major problem is that our political parties are not based on ideologies.”

“I am disappointed with the administration after all the votes provide to Buhari by North-west but the region is shortchanged in term of execution of developmental projects.

“My expectation is government will reciprocate the region with laudable projects but unfortunately, the government is being under the control of some southerners.

“My cross carpeting has been from the ruling parties to oppositions and on three occasions, I held a party to win election. I am not in politics to use political office to make financial gains but I am in politics to have the opportunity to serve the people.

“I have no reason to remain in the party that disappointed Nigerians and the party failed to improve the economic development of the people of the country rather contributed to hardship among the populace.”

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Osinbajo Appoints 21 New Federal Permanent Secretaries

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The Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo on Thursday, August 10, approved the appointment of 21 new Permanent Secretaries in the Federal Civil Service.

The appointment was announced in a statement issued today in Abuja from the office of Mrs Winifred Oyo-Ita, Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, by Mr Haruna Imrana, Director, Communications.

The permanent secretaries are Ehuria Ekeoma (Abia State); Akpan Sunday (Akwa Ibom); Anagbogu Nkiruka (Anambra); Walson-Jack Esther (Bayelsa); Gekpe Isu(Cross River); Aliboh Lawrence (Delta) and Uwaifo Clement ( Edo).

Others are Folayan Olaniyi (Ekiti state); Osuji Marcellinus (Imo); Mu’azu Abdulkadir (Kaduna); Sulaiman Lawal (Kano); Abdullahi Mashi (Katsina State); Adebiyi Adekunle, (Lagos); Ibrahim Wen, (NasarawaS tate); Odewale Olajide (Ogun) and Adesola Olusade (Ondo State).

The rest are Adekunle Adeyemi,( Oyo state); Nabasu Bako, (Plateau); Ekaro Chukwumuebobo,( Rivers); Umar Bello, (Sokoto State) and Aduda Tanimu from the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The statement added that their portfolios would be announced in due course.

The appointment followed after a week-long rigorous examination of  300 Federal Directors at Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).

The change in policy for the Federal Permanent Secretaries to write examinations was part of the resolutions of the National Council on Establishment (NEC) held July 2016 in Minna, Niger State.

Over 200 of the 300 Directors earlier shortlisted for interviews and verification for the 21 vacant positions of Federal Permanent Secretaries failed to scale the hurdle for the final stages of the exercise.

The candidates went through three levels of examination, including relevant public service and policy issues, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) assessment test and oral interview, within one week.

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