Rohr To Stick With Squad That Qualified For World Cup

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Nigeria coach, Gernot Rohr insists he has no plans to change his squad, despite unconvincing displays from his goalkeepers.

Super Eagles qualified for the world cup without losing any match in qualification. They have been drafted into Group D along with Argentina, Iceland and Croatia.

Daniel Akpeyi, Ikechukwu Ezenwa and Francis Uzoho were unconvincing on the road to Russia and Rohr will not switch up his squad.

“We have built a good environment for the team and I believe all the players gave everything to secure the ticket to Russia,” Rohr told BBC Sport.

“It looks very impossible to get Carl Ikeme to play in Russia, but Ikechukwu Ezenwa showed in big matches so far that he can be in goal.

“The young boy Uzoho had a great game against Argentina so I’ve sent the goalkeeper trainer to continue to provide support for this boy in Spain.

“We are not limited as we also have other goalkeepers like Akpeyi, Ajiboye and Alampasu in the team, so I believe we are fine.”

“You have to respect what the former players have done in the past but be careful that you don’t try to bring them back because people think so,” Rohr continued.

“We have big experience in captain [John] Mikel Obi, Victor Moses and our left back Elderson who is now playing in Belgium.

“If we feel the need to strengthen this squad we know what to do because for nearly two years now we’ve had a good atmosphere so far. Another good news is that the young striker in Wolfsburg [Victor] Osimhen is also playing now.

“I will make the [provisional] squad based on this group and also give one of the CHAN boys a chance as well.

“We can’t just keep bringing in player after player when you already have those who have proven that they can do the job.”

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President Buhari Apologizes For Missing #DapchiGirls – “We Are Sorry That It Happened”

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Four days after an attack on a girls’ school in Dapchi, Yobe State by members of Boko Haram, President Muhammadu Buhari has apologized to the parents of the girls who were kidnapped.

94 girls have now been declared missing after the terrorist sect attacked the Government Girls Technical College Dapchi, Yobe state.

Read the statement from the presidency released to Press below


“When I received the devastating news of the attack on the school and the fact that the local authorities could not account for all the students, I immediately dispatched a high-level delegation on a fact-finding visit to the town. I also instructed the security agencies to deploy in full and not spare any effort to ensure that all the girls are returned safely, and the attackers arrested and made to face justice.

“The entire country stands as one with the girls’ families, the government and the people of Yobe State. This is a national disaster. We are sorry that this could have happened and share your pain. We pray that our gallant armed forces will locate and safely return your missing family members.

“Our government is sending more troops and surveillance aircraft to keep an eye on all movements in the entire territory on a 24-hour basis, in the hope that all the missing girls will be found.”


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Is Nigeria A ‘Shithole Country’? (1)

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Is Nigeria A ‘Shithole Country’? (1) – Bedford N. Umez

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On January 11, 2018, The Washington Post reported that during the White House meeting on Immigration Reform, President Donald Trump referred to African nations as “shithole countries”, and proceeded to ask the following questions: “Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here? Why couldn’t we just take in immigrants from, say, Norway?” Similarly, on December 23, 2017, The New York Times reported that during a meeting in the Oval Office to advance President Trump’s Immigration Agenda, Trump made the following remarks about Nigerians: “Once they had seen the United States, they would never go back to their huts in Africa”. Obviously, the dust on these assertions by Trump has settled to some degree. However, the implications of those assertions cannot be taken lightly or be ignored.

This piece was written by Bedford N. Umez. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of

Clearly, Trump’s “shithole” label of African nations generated lots of heated, and often acrimonious commentaries and debates all over the world – leading to what I consider three distinct schools of thought. The first school, especially in the West, considers those remarks crude, offensive and outright racist on the part of Trump. The second school, mostly advanced by the President apologists, argues that the remarks meant that African countries are largely unskilled and not economically self-reliant. The third school, especially among some Nigerians, considers the remarks accurate description of several African nations, particularly Nigeria.

UN Condemns Trump’s “Shithole Countries” Remark, Brands It “Racist”

No objective thinker, with some measure of decency, will question the veracity of the first school of thought. The “shithole” label of African countries and the preference of Europeans over Africans in the US has serious racial overtone, and questions the fundamental truth that “all men are created equal”. However, the third school of thought deserves serious attention; hence, this question: Is Nigeria a “shithole country”?

 Nigeria is NOT a “shithole country”. However, no fair-minded Nigerian will ignore the argument of the supporters of the “shithole” label of Nigeria. Supporters argue that some Nigerian leaders have been creating “shithole” in Nigeria for three decades now. Specifically, they cite the worst brand of corruption on the part of so many Nigerian leaders and the massive unemployment in Nigeria since the late 80s. Clearly, acute corruption within and among so many Nigerian leaders is well-known within and outside Nigeria, and that is the bitter truth. Accordingly, Nigerians were not totally shocked when Transparency International ranked Nigeria as the most corrupt nation in 2000. Similarly, so many Nigerians agreed with a former Prime Minister of Britain, David Cameron, when he dubbed Nigeria a “fantastically corrupt” country in 2016. In fact, what rises so spontaneously to most Nigerian lips any time economic woes of Nigeria are the subjects of discussion is the word, corruption. If truth be told, President Muhammadu Buhari’s somber call to end chronic, systemic corruption during his presidential campaign in 2015 clears all doubts: “If Nigeria does not kill corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria.”

Though corruption is the basic justification for the “shithole” description of Nigeria by Trump, an in-depth study of the Nigerian economy (in 1999 and in 2005) suggests that the root causes of the “shithole” label are much deeper and deadlier than corruption itself – a point I now turn.

 As a concerned Nigerian, who has written several books and continue to write articles on Nigeria, I found out (in 1999 and in 2005) that corruption in and of itself is not the root of the economic woes in Nigeria. Here are the root causes:

(a) So many Nigerian leaders are not rational actors in the world stage.

(b) So many Nigerian leaders are not patriotic; they do not love Nigeria.

(c) So many Nigerian leaders are not ashamed or embarrassed that an oil rich Nigeria (the “giant of Africa” in the 70s and early 80s) has become such a laughing stock in the world – the “fantastically corrupt” and “shithole”.

 Put differently, a rational, compassionate, patriotic Nigerian leader, who loves wisdom and commons sense, will NOT steal from (or starve) their OWN struggling people only to further develop Switzerland and her cohorts with the loot. Since the late 80s to this day, so many Nigerian leaders continue to rob their fellow Nigerians of their oil money ONLY to hide the loot in some foreign countries. Here are the chilling, shameful facts:

  1. “From 1979 through 1983, scandals involving billions of dollars dominated headlines. These included the illicit auction of much of the $2.5m annual allocation of import licences; the arrest of several top officials of the Federal Capital Development Authority in Abuja over an alleged $20m fraud; and the revelation by a federal minister that Nigeria was losing $50m a month to ‘ghost workers’ and other forms of payroll fraud” (George Ayittey, 1992; Bedford Umez, 1999).
  2. “Unpatriotic citizens in our midst loot our resources and cart the proceeds away into Western banks with the collaboration of Western financial systems. Corruption costs African countries an estimated $148bn a year”, said by President Olusegun Obasanjo (BBC, 2006).
  3. “Former Governor James Ibori embezzled an estimated $250 million from the people of Delta State. In April, Ibori pleaded guilty to stealing $80m and was sentenced to 13 years” (CNN, 2012).
  4. “The United States announced that it was freezing $458m (£275m) that had been stashed away in foreign bank accounts – part of at least $3bn that Abacha is believed to have looted during the 1990s” (BBC, 2014).
  5. “Sani Abacha, Nigeria’s late military dictator (1993-98), is suspected to have looted up to $5 billion (£3.5 billion), of which $2.2 billion is apparently still being withheld by European banks two decades later. Switzerland recently agreed to return a portion – $321 million – of the Abacha loot” (Guardian, 2016).
  6. “The Federal Government has released an interim report of recoveries of looted assets and monies. Cash recoveries made from 29 May 2015 to 25 May 2016 total N78,325,354,631.82; $185,119,584.61; £3,508,355.46”, reported by Segun Adeyemi, Special Assistant to the Minister of Information and Culture (This Day, 2016).
  7. “We urge the administration to attach and release to Nigeria some $500 million worth of US-based proceeds of corruption traced to former Nigerian dictator General Sani Abacha,” the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) wrote in an open letter to the US White House (CNN, 2018).

 While the above instances of looting Nigerian treasury are by no means exhaustive, it is abundantly clear that Nigeria could have been as developed as say Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Iran, Venezuela, among other OPEC nations, if the above looted funds were wisely invested in Nigeria. The point is that “lootocracy”, i.e., robbing Nigerians only to further develop some foreign nations with the loot is savagely cruel, exceedingly brutal, senseless and unpatriotic. Nigerian masses have been suffering because of this senseless, unpatriotic looting since the late 80s. Unfortunately, there are more of this self-inflicted destructive behaviours on the part of so many Nigerian leaders. Kindly read on.

 A substantial number of Nigerian leaders and their elite contractors have abandoned healthcare in Nigeria ONLY to fly abroad with the country’s oil money for medical check-up and treatment. Shockingly, upon returning home, cured and healthy, they still see no logic of building good hospitals like the ones that treated them abroad. In addition to flying abroad for their own medical treatment, they are flying their eight-month pregnant wives to the Western nations to deliver their children healthy, and for their children to become the citizens of those foreign nations. Abandoned and neglected, Nigerian hospitals can hardly treat the mass population of Nigeria. As such, the masses often rely solely on “konka-mixtures” of some sort by some native doctors whose herbs are, to a large extent, scientifically untested, un-sanitised, and even dangerous to human consumption. Indeed, for over two decades now, so many pregnant women and their babies continue to die in Nigerian hospital labour rooms. Similarly, children and the elderly continue to die in those neglected hospitals like poisoned rats and are often buried as such. Still, there are more of this absurdity and lack of patriotism.

To be concluded

Umez is Professor, Government, Lee College, Baytown, Texas, United States

This piece was written by Bedford N. Umez. 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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Guardiola: Sterling Could Miss Carabao Cup Final

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Pep Guardiola says Raheem Sterling could miss the Carabao Cup final on Sunday against Arsenal.

The City coach revealed this at his pre-match press conference, as Sterling picked up a muscle injury 10 days ago against Basel.

The England international missed the match against Wigan and could miss Sunday’s final.

“He had a problem with muscle, he had a problem against Basel,” Guardiola said. “I don’t know if he’s ready for Sunday.”

Gabriel Jesus, however, could return to the City squad, having trained with his team-mates in the past few days.

“We will see tomorrow,” Guardiola said of Jesus. “He made the third session yesterday. Every day he is better.”

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

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Manchester United are expected to bid for Toby Alderweireld if Tottenham decide to sell the defender in the summer.
Manchester United have an Alexis Sanchez-sized issue when it comes to trying to convince David de Gea to commit his long-term future to Old Trafford.
Aymeric Laporte is hoping to mark the start of his City career with a win at Wembley.

Willian has admitted he remains close friends with Jose Mourinho, but insists his focus will be on helping Chelsea beat Manchester United on Sunday.
Kyle Walker admits he took a risk to join Manchester City last summer after starting to doubt he could win major trophies at Tottenham.

Jurgen Klopp suggested Liverpool are looking to tie Sadio Mane down to a new contract, but insisted it’s normal to want to keep your best players.
Jurgen Klopp says Steven Gerrard is doing a superb job at youth level while admitting the first-team are happy to have young players such as Rafa Camacho, Curtis Jones and Connor Masterson involved in their training sessions.
Leighton Baines is set for a timely first-team return as Everton grapple with a defensive injury crisis this weekend.

Newcastle United chiefs will be cautious when it comes to the whispers coming out of Stamford Bridge about Jamaal Lascelles.

It is time to draw a line under the Financial Fair Play charge that has been hanging over Leicester City for three-and-a-half years, manager Claude Puel has declared.

A petition calling for Sunderland owner Ellis Short to sell the club has been signed by almost 7,000 supporters.

George Thorne was not in Derby County’s 18 for last night’s 2-2 draw with Leeds United at Pride Park Stadium due to a back problem.
Gary Rowett has dismissed suggestions Derby County are suffering their ‘the February wobble’.

Middlesbrough striker Rudy Gestede will miss the rest of the season with an ankle season.
Aitor Karanka hopes he does not have to deliver another dressing room rollocking to get Nottingham Forest firing at QPR and jokingly insisted: ‘If I do, it is because they are not intelligent’.

Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson has confirmed that the Eagles are close to signing former Liverpool goalkeeper Diego Cavalieri.

The Celtic players let their supporters down in the defeat to Zenit, according to Roy Keane.

Brighton boss Chris Hughton would rather stay up than win the FA Cup.

Chris Ramsey is assisting with QPR first-team coaching following the recent departure of Curtis Fleming.

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Conte: Good For Chelsea, If Mourinho Benches Pogba

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Antonio Conte expects Paul Pogba to start against Chelsea, but will be glad if Mourinho benches him yet again.

Pogba was substituted 63 minutes into the 2-0 loss to Tottenham, and relegated to the bench against Huddersfield, before he was withdrawn in the loss to Newcastle.

He was missing in the Huddersfield win due to illness, but started from the bench against Sevilla.

But Conte will be quite pleased if he doesn’t play against Chelsea on Sunday.

And when asked about the Frenchman potentially being on the bench again this weekend, the Blues boss said: “We are talking about a top player, about a fantastic player.

“My expectation is to see him on the pitch, if he stays out [of the XI] it will be better.

“As I said before, we are talking about a top player. Every coach has to find the right way to manage him. But I think that Pogba is showing at United that he is a top player.”

When asked if he was surprised Pogba had been left out recently, Conte added: “I must be honest: my focus is only on Chelsea. I’m not interested on what happens with the other teams.”

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Shakhtar Donestk Captain Darijo Srna Handed 17-month Doping Ban

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Shakhtar Donetsk captain Darijo Srna has been handed a 17-month ban after testing positive for banned steroid dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA).

Darijo Srna has been awaiting action since making himself unavailable for the Ukrainian outfit since the 2-1 win over Napoli in September.

Srna was found by the National Anti-Doping Center of Ukraine (NADCU) to have had DHEA in his system, which occurs naturally in humans, though an “atypical” amount was discovered in the sample.

However, the former Croatia captain will be given the green light to return in August as the suspension is backdated to when he failed the test.

“Mr Srna acknowledged that he had violated (unintentionally) anti-doping rules,” a statement from the NADCU read.

“After examining the source of the adverse result of the analysis, NADC took note of Mr Srna’s explanation of the circumstances that preceded the testing, and concluded that there was no significant guilty or negligence of the athlete in the violation.”

Despite their captain’s absence, Shakhtar reached the last 16 of the Champions League, where they claimed a 2-1 first-leg win over Roma on Wednesday.

Srna has spent the last 15 years in Ukraine with Shakhtar, racking up close to 350 league appearances during that time.

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Arsenal Have An Unfinished Business In The EFL Cup After Birmingham Loss In 2011- Jack Wilshere

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Jack Wilshere has targeted victory over Manchester City in the EFL Cup final this weekend in order to draw a line under the pain of losing at the same stage in 2011.

Arsenal suffered a shock 2-1 loss to Birmingham City seven years ago after a costly mix-up at the end allowed Obafemi Martins to pounce.

Wilshere has had better success at Wembley since then, with Arsenal winning the FA Cup three times in the last four years, but he admits that it feels as though his side have some “unfinished business” to take care of on their latest trip to the national stadium.

“In 2011, we were expected to win and I was convinced we were going to win and come home with silverware,” he told Sky Sports News. “I think it helps as you grow up in football. You get more experience in these [situations]. I know we didn’t like it, but I think it helped me in my career; it was a horrible feeling.

“We’ve won at Wembley in the FA Cup and it was the best thing ever. [They are] totally different emotions and we don’t want to feel [defeat] again. We know that City will be tough, but we also know what it takes to win at Wembley, and we have a fantastic record there. It’s a final and anything can happen. We’ll be ready.

“Since [the Birmingham game], we haven’t really been anywhere near [the final] in this competition. I want to add this trophy to my collection, and almost feel there is some unfinished business because of the 2011 final.”

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Hoffenheim’s Kerem Demirbay Not Interested In Premier League Move Yet

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Hoffenheim midfielder Kerem Demirbay has stated that he has no plans to leave the club despite attracting interest from several Premier League clubs

The likes of Arsenal and Liverpool have been linked with a move for Kerem Demirbay, who has impressed during his 23 appearances for the Bundesliga outfit so far this season.

Hoffenheim are currently sitting in mid-table in the German top flight, but Demirbay says that he is happy at the club and has not thought about leaving.

“I never said that I wanted to change [clubs],” he told Kicker.

“I feel comfortable here and will be playing for Hoffenheim in the coming season.”

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Rob Holding Admits Arsenal Panicked Against Ostersunds FK

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Rob Holding has acknowledged that Arsenal were at “panic stations” during the first half of their Europa League fixture with Ostersunds FK

Arsenal held a 3-0 lead heading into the second leg at the Emirates Stadium, but the Swedish club scored twice in three minutes to suggest that they could pull off one of the greatest European comebacks of all time.

Arsenal eventually won the game 4-2 on aggregate with Sead Kolasinac’s goal easing the tension in North London, but Holding has agreed with manager Arsene Wenger regarding the team showing complacency during the early stages of the game.

The 22-year-old told talkSPORT: “I think maybe it might have been a bit of complacency but we tried to start the game positively because we knew it would be a tough game. they play nice football.

“It was panic stations because they scored in the 21st and 23rd minute so we needed to sort that out. We were able to see out the rest of the first half and we got going in the second half with the early goal.

“We got through but it would have been better to go through with a clean sheet and more goals and getting the win. We didn’t do that but still getting through is the most important thing.”

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Stefan De Vrij Confirms Exit From Lazio At The End Of The Season

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Lazio defender Stefan de Vrij has confirmed that he will leave the club at the end of the season.

Earlier this week, sporting director Igli Tare revealed that the two parties would “say goodbye” after failing to come to terms over a new deal for the Netherlands international.

Stefan De Vrij has been strongly linked with a transfer to either Liverpool or Manchester United, but the player has suggested that he is disappointed to be leaving the Stadio Olimpico.

On Instagram, the 26-year-old said: “It has been a very difficult period full of speculations on my future to come to this point that nobody desired.

“Unfortunately we were not able to find a satisfying agreement for both parties due to various reasons. I understand the disappointment of the Lazio fans very well and it hurts me leaving in this way. Even though I am very happy and I feel at home here, sometimes we need to get out of our comfort zone to achieve our desired goals.

“I will forever be grateful to Lazio and to the fans for always being there for me, for the trust and opportunities given. I have always tried to demonstrate that by giving the best of me and I will keep doing that until the end.”

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Daily Roundup: Latest Football News Content Across Europe

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Real Madrid are prepared to cash in on Gareth Bale as soon as the summer window opens. Much to his frustration, Bale has started recent matches on the bench and manager Zinedine Zidane seems to reluctant to trust the Welshman while his job at the Santiago Bernabeu is still in the balance.

Bale, a Manchester United transfer target, is competing with Marco Asensio for a place in the starting XI and Florentino Perez, the club’s president, believes the 22-year-old is a future Ballon d’Or winner, which gives Zidane the leeway to bench Bale. (Marca)

Barcelona have decided not to follow up their interest in Lyon skipper Nabil Fekir. A long-term Arsenal transfer target, the 24-year-old midfielder was linked with a £45m move to the Nou Camp before a deal was struck with Liverpool to bring Philippe Coutinho to Spain. (Sport)

Real Madrid have been given a boost in their pursuit of Robert Lewandowski after the prolific striker sacked his agent and appointed Pini Zahavi, the man who had a part in orchestrating Neymar’s world record move to Paris Saint-Germain last summer. (Marca)

Neymar’s father remains in contact with Real Madrid president Perez as he tries to secure a summer move for the 26-year-old Brazilian. (Diario Gol)


Liverpool have retained an interest in Piotr Zielinski after initially missing out on him during the summer of 2016. The Poland international is impressing for table toppers Napoli but if a €40m bid arrived for the versatile midfielder it would be taken under consideration. (Gazzetta dello Sport)

Andre Silva’s AC Milan career appears to be over. The striker, who arrived last summer for a fee rumoured to be in the region of £34m, has fallen down the pecking order after some lacklustre performances. New manager Gennaro Gattuso has tried to get the 22-year-old firing again but the trust between the pair has now gone and the former Porto star could be on his way to England, with Wolves keen in January. (Calciomercato)

Juventus have reached an agreement to sign Manchester United full-back Matteo Darmian in the summer ahead of rivals Inter Milan and Napoli. A fee is yet to be agreed upon with United but it appears increasingly likely that the Italy international will be heading back to Turin after previously turning out for Torino. (Calciomercato)


Arjen Robben is in talks with Bayern Munich about signing a deal with the club which would see him retire in Bavaria. The 34-year-old revealed that he has held talks with chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge in recent weeks and he didn’t want to say anything in public just yet. (Kicker)

Nils Petersen is set to commit his long-term future to SC Freiburg. The striker has just 16 months remaining on his current deal but is close to putting pen to paper on an extension. The 29-year-old has impressed this season, scoring 15 goals in 26 appearances in all competitions. (Kicker)


Paris Saint-Germain are prepared to part ways with Layvin Kurzawa this summer after growing tired of his inconsistent performances. The 25-year-old arrived from Monaco in 2015 and was expected to be the club’s left-back for the next decade but he’s failed to cement his place in the starting XI. (L’Equipe)

Marseille believe they can beat Roma, Napoli and RB Leipzig to the signature of Montpellier defender Nordi Mukiele. The 20-year-old has caught the eye this season and could be available for around the €10m mark. The Ligue 1 side are hoping that the versatile defender will want to continue his development in France before a move abroad. (Le10Sport)

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Wenger Backs Wilshere After Keane’s Comments

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Arsenal gaffer, Arsene Wenger has defended Jack Wilshere, after he was labelled the most overrated player in the world by Roy Keane.

The former Manchester United man slammed Wilshere, who captained Arsenal in their disastrous 2-1 loss to Ostersunds.

Wenger tinkered with his squad, with the Carabao Cup final against City on Sunday in mind. Arsenal progressed 4-3 on aggregate and were slammed by Keane, who took special aim at Wilshere.

Speaking on ITV , the former Manchester United great said: “You look for your senior players to lead by example…when Wilshere is your captain, to me, he is probably the most over-rated player on the planet.”

Wenger adopted a weary tone when the matter was raised at his news conference to preview the EFL Cup final.

“Who said that?” he asked before exhaling at length when informed Keane was the pundit in question.

“It’s very difficult. I personally rate Jack very highly,” he answered. “After that, you can have opinions.

“Jack was in a team that did not perform well, so it was not easy for him.

“It was not his best performance but Roy Keane knows that can happen to everybody.”

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Europa League Draw: Arsenal Get Milan And Salzburg Face Dortmund

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The Europa League last 16 draw held today has served a tasty fixture, with Arsenal facing AC Milan and Red Bull Salzburg facing Dortmund.

Arsenal lost 2-1 to Ostersunds at home and progressed 4-2 on aggregate. Dortmund’s late equaliser helped them secure a 4-3 win over  Atalanta.

RB Leipzig dumped Napoli out of the competition on away goals and will battle Zenit.


Lazio vs Dynamo Kyiv

RB Leipzig vs Zenit

Atletico Madrid vs Lokomotiv Moscow

CSKA Moscow vs Lyon

Marseille vs Athletic Bilbao

Sporting CP vs Viktoria Plzen

Dortmund vs Salzburg

AC Milan vs Arsenal

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Campbell: I Am One Of The Greatest Minds In Football

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Arsenal legend, Sol Campbell believes he has one of the greatest minds in football, and deserves to be in a managerial position.

The former England international defender applied for the Oxford United post, but lost it to Craig Bellamy.

Campbell has hit out at the fact that he is yet to get a managerial job and believes he will adapt immediately.

“I did go [for the Oxford job] and they didn’t accept me,” he told the Arsenal podcast Highbury & Heels.

“Maybe it was a lack of experience, things like that, but it’s a full circle. Experience? How do I get experience? Well, I need a job to get experience.

“I don’t want to go too low that it’s a struggle, and I don’t want to go too low that I’m under someone and thinking ‘what am I doing here?’ I would rather be managing a club myself.

“I’m confident and it’s not like it’s rocket science to run a football club, especially when you get to that level. If you’re intelligent enough and a quick learner you will learn pretty soon, within two or three games, what the team needs, training-wise, to survive in that league, get better in that league, to get in the play-offs or even win the league.

“I’m intelligent enough, it’s not like I played on a fox and dog pitch all my life. I can’t believe some people, I’m one of the greatest minds in football and I’m being wasted because of a lack of experience or ‘maybe he talks his mind too much’.

“Go to Germany, they love people who speak their minds. They got the jobs. I’m sorry that I’ve got a mind, but don’t be scared of that. That should be something you want at your club, but obviously not.”

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VIDEO: Adekunle Gold – IRE

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Adekunle Gold releases a new song and music video titled ‘Ire’. It is a personal song which reflects on his life’s journey with a message that will inspire his fans for a long time to come.

‘Ire’ is a life lesson packaged in a slow tempo song and accompanied by traditional Yoruba percussion sounds. Adekunle Gold sings in his native Yoruba language as is his usual style. He also sings in English for an uncharacteristic amount of time, alluding to his desire for the song’s important lessons to be understood. According to Adekunle Gold, “’Ire’ is a symbolic summary of my life experiences and my journey to becoming Adekunle Gold.” He also took to Instagram to let his fans know that “This song will be the soundtrack of your life.”

Adekunle Gold opens the song singing:

The grass is greener on the other side, that’s what I thought before I took the ride.

He goes on to reveal that “The life I was looking for was already my own,” before telling listeners, “Goodness is calling out to me, it’s telling me to come home.”

The song was produced by Seyikeyz, the video was directed by Aje and shot in various locations around Lagos, Nigeria, including Ajah, Ajegunle, Ikorodu, and Ikoyi. The scenes in the video are beautifully played in reverse, alluding to Adekunle Gold’s self-reflection. Scenes where Adekunle Gold prepares dinner on firewood, sings in church and paddles a canoe are some of the visuals that contribute to the video’s captivating aesthetic making it a video worth watching.


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Military Denies Halting Operation To Allow Shekau Escape From Sambisa

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The Nigerian Army has denied insinuations in the media that troops movement under Operation DEEP PUNCH II was temporarily halted to allow Boko Haram Leader, Abubakar Shekau, escape from Sambisa Forest.

Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, the Deputy Director, Army Public Relations, in a statement issued in Maiduguri, dismissed the report as “not true”.

The statement read: “The attention of Theatre Command, Operation LAFIYA DOLE has been drawn to unfortunate mainstream and social media reports insinuating that troops advance at the ongoing Operation DEEP PUNCH II was deliberately halted to allow the escape of the purported factional Boko Haram terrorists group leader, Abubakar Shekau in Sambisa forest. This is not true.

“Contrary to the mischievous allegations, no such order or directive was given by anybody to any of the units and formations in the operation.

“It is crucial to point out that there are several factors in planning and conduct of military operations, whether kinetic or otherwise. The ongoing Operation DEEP PUNCH II, which is aimed at clearing Boko Haram insurgents from the Sambisa forest and the northern fringes of Lake Chad region, was planned to be executed in phases.

“It is a phase operation and therefore requires that at a predetermined point or stage, troops will be halted either preparatory for transiting to another phase or the other depending on the threat situation.

“During the operation, troops movement could be put on halt when vehicles or other mobile equipment are bugged down due to the difficulty of the terrain and for recovery purposes.

“In military operations avenues are deliberately provided for troops to habour, where they rest and carry out refitting of weapons and other equipment before resuming the operations.

“Additionally, booby traps and land mines could also compel an advancing troops to halt to enable some specialized squad or scout assess the situation before movement resume. These and several other factors could precipitate the halting of troops during operations.

“It is therefore very appalling and unimaginable that a fundamental operational procedure could be misinterpreted and be mischievously used as a psychological weapon to indirectly dampen the morale of our troops”

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360Recommends: Aphrose – Move On

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Following her debut single ‘The Middle’ which garnered much praise and support from media and fans around the world, Aphrose is excited to release her soulful new single ‘Move On’, produced by Scott McCannell. Move On is an empowering love song that breaks barriers and frees us from our own limitations. Her distinctive, silky smooth voice takes us on a journey towards self-love, leaving us wanting more. She adds ‘It is not your average love song about relationships between two people, but rather about the love a person finds when they realize their own self-worth. Move On is that feeling you get when you finally become aware that you’ve had enough of barriers like hate and fear and you’re not going to let those walls hold you back anymore.’

APHROSE a.k.a Joanna Mohammed is an Indie-Soul artist from Toronto, Canada. Raised in the culturally diverse neighbourhoods of Scarborough, Aphrose’s musical tastes were shaped by all the various genres present in her Trinidadian household. Soul and gospel are obvious influences, while she’s also inspired by traditional styles such as Soca, Calypso, Reggae but also Bollywood soundtracks and even Country.

Taking her audience with her every step of the way, Aphrose has a reputation in Toronto for her powerful and soaring R&B vocal stylings fronting and supporting the many bands and artists she performs with. She had the honour of working with and learning from industry heavyweights such as Daniel Caesar, Lee Fields & The Expressions, Nikki Yanofski, to name a few, and continuously strives to grow as an artist and make her dreams a reality, through dedication, commitment and love of her craft.

A thought-provoking visual, directed by Michael Tobin has been unveiled on February 19th. Proud of living in a time where women are standing up for themselves, they came up with the idea of filming an army of strong women walking, in a single take, to emphasize the symbolic value of the song. ‘The concept of having 20+ strong, brave, women of different ethnicities & backgrounds walk in solidarity, past the oppression, past the racism, past the hatred, past the bigotry, past the weight of the patriarchy and rise above it, was powerful. Hopefully Move On resonates with a lot of people.’ Aphrose’s new single is now available on all digital platforms.


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FG To Establish Science Parks In Nigerian Universities

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The Federal Government has assured that it will help Nigerian universities establish science parks to facilitate diversification of the country’s economy through science, technology and innovations.

The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, made the assurance in his address at the first International Conference for Science Parks and Innovation Ecosystem for National Development, SPIE4ND, holding at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

According to the minister, the culture of establishing high-tech clusters should be promoted by universities, new business incubators and research complexes within the Science and Technology sector.

Stressing that no nation would achieve greatness without Science and Technology, Dr Onu said his ministry was ready to partner and support science and technology innovations geared towards helping Nigeria transit to knowledge-based economy.

Vanguard reports that the Minister further stressed that the Science Park project would facilitate the creation and growth of innovation-based companies through incubation and spin-off process, as well as provide other value-added services together with high quality space and facilities.

Making reference to Singapore, the minister said that history had shown that countries with smaller population had achieved greatness through science and technology.

He stated that Nigeria with larger population could leverage on science parks to improve the pace of its economic growth.

“I assure you that the collaboration between the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and my ministry and its parastatals would yield positive results with both organisations mutually benefiting for the overall development of Nigeria,” he said.

He said, as the most populous African country, Nigeria should set the pace for science and technology revolution in the continent by harnessing indigenous technology.

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FIFA Proposes Cancelling Under-17 And Under-20 World Cups For A 48-team Youth Tournament

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FIFA is looking to merge both the Under 17 And Under 20 world cups, emulating the expansion of the main World Cup.

Officials are exploring the merits of an age cut-off at 18 or 19. The women’s youth tournaments could also be combined to create a single 24-team event under plans that were considered in a meeting of the governing body’s competitions committee two weeks ago.

The proposals were discussed by FIFA President Gianni Infantino with some member associations during summits in Mauritania and Nigeria this week.

FIFA told The Associated Press the proposals form part of an ongoing review of competitions two years into Infantino’s presidency that has already seen the main World Cup expanded from 32 to 48 teams from 2026.

If eventually approved, there would be a far bigger jump in size for the U17 and U20 World Cups, with each biennial event for young men currently featuring 24 teams.

FIFA is trying to streamline the international youth football calendar that also saw England teams compete at three European youth championships last year in U21, U19 and U17 categories.

England won the European U19 title between triumphs at the U20 World Cup in South Korea in June and the U17 World Cup in India in October.

The U20 competition was known as the FIFA World Youth Championship until 2005 when Lionel Messi helped Argentina win the 15th edition.

FIFA has more flexibility around immediate changes to its youth tournaments for young men as hosts for the 2019 events are yet to be selected.

But the women’s U17 and U20 World Cups will be staged this year in Uruguay and France, respectively. North Korea will be defending both titles won in 2016

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Former FIFA President Sepp Blatter Backs Morocco’s 2026 World Cup Bid Over USA-Mexico-Canada

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Former FIFA President Sepp Blatter has endorsed Morocco’s 2026 World Cup bid – although he is still banned from soccer roles for financial misconduct.

Blatter tweeted on Thursday that ”Morocco would be the logical host! And it is time for Africa again!”

The 2010 World Cup was staged in South Africa.

Referencing the rival joint bid from the United States, Canada, and Mexico, Blatter tweeted ”co-Hosting rejected by FIFA after 2002.” That’s when the World Cup was in South Korea and Japan.

Blatter is serving a six-year ban from soccer following the discovery of an uncontracted salary of $2 million to one-time adviser Michel Platini.

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Police Officer Dies Of Heart Attack After Spartak Moscow, Athletic Bilbao Fan Riot

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A police officer has died of a heart attack after attempting to quell a riot which broke out around an hour before the Europa League clash between Athletic Bilbao and Spartak Moscow on Thursday night.

Frenzy erupted outside the San Mames Stadium in Bilbao.

It was reported that a section of Russian fans had attempted to spark violence near the regional television headquarters before it was averted by police.

Marca have also released further details on the events, stating that the police officer suffered the heart attack during an altercation.

Our condolences to colleagues, friends and relatives of the Ertzainza [force officer] who died in an act of service,” Bilbao police wrote on Twitter. The identity of the officer was not immediately disclosed.

Athletic added a statement of their own, saying: “Our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the deceased officer today. Athletic Club express their strongest rejection of violence generated around football.”

The game went on despite the violence, with Spartak winning the second leg 2-1, but Athletic Bilbao advancing to the round of 16, 4-3 on aggregate.

At his postmatch news conference, Athletic coach Jose Angel Ziganda said: “We didn’t know anything. We found out at the end of the game. I don’t know if would have been better or worse to suspend the match.”

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Deportivo Complete Free Signing Of Sulley Muntari

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Deportivo have signed former Sunderland and Portsmouth midfielder Sulley Muntari.

The Ghanaian, 33, has joined the LaLiga side on a short-term deal until the end of the season.

Sulley Muntari was given an opportunity to impress by new Depor coach Clarence Seedorf earlier in the month, with the duo having played together at AC Milan.

He had been training with the Spanish outfit since February 9.

Former Portsmouth midfielder Muntari was also part of the Rossoneri squad during Seedorf’s brief spell as coach in 2014.

Muntari attracted headlines last season after being initially banned for protesting racism in Italy, and said he was treated like a ‘criminal’ after being shown two yellow cards in a protest during a Serie A game while with Pescara.

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Yannick Carrasco Set To Move To Chinese Club Dalian Yifang

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Yannick Carrasco’s time at Atlético Madrid could be coming to an end very soon.

Yannick Carrasco, who has been featuring less and less in Simeone’s plans, appears to be on the point of leaving for Chinese side Dalian Yifang

The offer is just over 30 million euros of which 25% would go to Monaco.

The player’s agent has told Atleti of the offer and the club have given Carrasco permission to enter talks. He has until the end of the week to reach an agreement with the Chinese club.

Carrasco, though, will not be the club’s only signing with Sao Paulo player Christian Cueva touted for a move to China as he searches for more game time ahead of the World Cup.

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Tottenham Willing To Sell Toby Alderweireld In The Summer After Contract Stand-off

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Tottenham are considering cashing in on Toby Alderweireld this summer after talks stalled regarding a new contract for the defender, according to The Times.

Toby Alderweireld is reportedly asking for his wage to be increased to £150,000 per week but Tottenham are unwilling to play ball due to their strict wage structure.

The Belgium defender is understood to be demanding a deal worth £150,000 a week, a salary that Tottenham will not countenance paying to a player who turns 29 next week, leading the club to explore a sale at the end of the season.

Mauricio Pochettino has backed the club’s decision, as the head coach accepts their strict wage structure and would rather use the money to strengthen other areas of the squad. Tottenham’s final offer to Alderweireld during talks last month is understood to have been £110,000 a week including bonuses, which would make him one of the highest-paid players at the club, although that will be surpassed if, as expected, Harry Kane and Dele Alli sign improved deals at the end of the season.

Manchester United and Real Madrid have been linked with an interest in Alderweireld, who signed a five-year deal with Spurs when he arrived from Atletico Madrid for £11.5million in 2015.

He has since developed into one of the Premier League’s best centre-backs and Tottenham are sure to demand a huge fee for the Belgian, likely to rival the £75m Liverpool paid for Virgil van Dijk in January.

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