I Did Not Want To Sell James Rodriguez – Zinedine Zidane

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Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has claimed that he did not want James Rodriguez to leave the club last summer.

James Rodriguez struggled for regular action at the Bernabeu during the 2016-17 campaign, and completed a surprise loan move to Bayern Munich for the 2017-18 season.

Rodriguez will be eligible to take on his parent club in the semi-finals of this season’s Champions League, with the first leg due to take place at the Allianz on Wednesday night.

Zidane, however, has said that he wanted to keep the 26-year-old in the Spanish capital.

“I didn’t want James to go, he decided to go. I never had any problem with James and it’s more about what is said in the press,” Zidane told reporters.

“I think he will be motivated because he is a football player. He doesn’t have to prove anything to anyone. Anyone that thinks I am against James is wrong. He will want to go out and prove himself but because he likes football and that’s it.”

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It Looks Like A ‘Really Bad Injury’ For Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – Jurgen Klopp

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Jurgen Klopp fears that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain suffered “a really bad injury” during Tuesday’s Champions League semi-final first leg with Roma at Anfield.

Oxlade-Chamberlain picked up a suspected knee problem in the early stages of the clash, and ultimately headed down the tunnel on a stretcher in the 23rd minute.

The midfielder looked in agony and speaking after the game, which Liverpool won 5-2, Klopp admitted that the prognosis was not good.

“Oxlade-Chamberlain is probably a really bad injury,” Klopp told BT Sport.

 

“If we can say that already before the scan, that’s never good news so that means for us it’s a massive blow, of course.

“We have still a few very important games to go and the squad doesn’t get bigger in the moment, so we obviously need to be creative in the next few games.”

Oxlade-Chamberlain’s involvement for England at the 2018 World Cup could also now be in doubt.

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Liverpool Captain Jordan Henderson Rues Late Lapse Of Concentration Vs Roma

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Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson has rued his side’s late lapse in concentration in their Champions League semi-final against Roma.

Two gaols each from Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino, and a solitary goal from Sadio Mane, had given Liverpool a 5-0 lead but Edin Dzeko and a penalty from Diego Perotti gave Roma life.

Liverpool are still the favourites to go through to the final given they have a three-goal advantage but speaking to BT after the game Henderson wasn’t happy.

“It felt as though we were in full control but we basically gave them two goals, you can’t do that in the Champions League. At the same time we played well, we will go there with a three goal advantage.” Henderson said.

“Overall we have got to stay positive. We knew it would not be easy tonight, we know it will not be easy there. It will be a challenge but one we will look forward to and one we will hopefully finish them off.”

 

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Liverpool Captain Jordan Henderson Rues Late Lapse Of Concentration Vs Roma

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Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson has rued his side’s late lapse in concentration in their Champions League semi-final against Roma.

Two gaols each from Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino, and a solitary goal from Sadio Mane, had given Liverpool a 5-0 lead but Edin Dzeko and a penalty from Diego Perotti gave Roma life.

Liverpool are still the favourites to go through to the final given they have a three-goal advantage but speaking to BT after the game Henderson wasn’t happy.

“It felt as though we were in full control but we basically gave them two goals, you can’t do that in the Champions League. At the same time we played well, we will go there with a three goal advantage.” Henderson said.

“Overall we have got to stay positive. We knew it would not be easy tonight, we know it will not be easy there. It will be a challenge but one we will look forward to and one we will hopefully finish them off.”

 

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Sergei Eremenko Completes Nationality Switch From Finland To Russia Ahead Of World Cup

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FIFA has cleared teenager Sergei Eremenko to play for Russia at the World Cup by approving his change of national eligibility from Finland.

A request by the Russian Football Union was approved on Monday, FIFA said.

The 19-year-old Eremenko was born in Russia and currently plays on loan at Spartak Moscow. His father, Alexei, has Finnish citizenship after playing and coaching there for much of his career.

Sergei Eremenko represented Finland at youth level, following his elder brothers Alexei and Roman, who have both played more than 50 times for the senior national team.

Roman Eremenko was playing for CSKA Moscow in 2016 when he tested positive for cocaine at a Champions League game. His two-year UEFA ban expires in October.

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Sergei Eremenko Completes Nationality Switch From Finland To Russia Ahead Of World Cup

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FIFA has cleared teenager Sergei Eremenko to play for Russia at the World Cup by approving his change of national eligibility from Finland.

A request by the Russian Football Union was approved on Monday, FIFA said.

The 19-year-old Eremenko was born in Russia and currently plays on loan at Spartak Moscow. His father, Alexei, has Finnish citizenship after playing and coaching there for much of his career.

Sergei Eremenko represented Finland at youth level, following his elder brothers Alexei and Roman, who have both played more than 50 times for the senior national team.

Roman Eremenko was playing for CSKA Moscow in 2016 when he tested positive for cocaine at a Champions League game. His two-year UEFA ban expires in October.

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Greek Club Panathinaikos Banned From European Football For Three Seasons

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Panathinaikos have been banned from European competition for three seasons for failing to pay their debts, UEFA has announced.

Panathinaikos were given a suspended sentence by UEFA’s Club Financial Control Body, the panel that oversees the governing body’s financial fair play rules, in December and told they had until March 1 to settle their unpaid bills.

On March 19, however, the panel’s investigatory chamber concluded that Panathinaikos had still not paid these unspecified debts, which meant the December punishment became active.

As well as missing out on European club football for the next three seasons, the club must also pay a €100,000 fine that was originally suspended, having already been ordered to pay the same amount in December.

In a statement, UEFA said the sanction “shall take effect immediately.”

National champions 20 times, Panathinaikos are Greece’s most successful side in European club competition. They were European Cup runners-up in 1971 and reached the semi-finals of the same competition in 1985, when they lost to Liverpool, and 1996.

This season, however, they went out of the Europa League in the play-off round.

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Greek Club Panathinaikos Banned From European Football For Three Seasons

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Panathinaikos have been banned from European competition for three seasons for failing to pay their debts, UEFA has announced.

Panathinaikos were given a suspended sentence by UEFA’s Club Financial Control Body, the panel that oversees the governing body’s financial fair play rules, in December and told they had until March 1 to settle their unpaid bills.

On March 19, however, the panel’s investigatory chamber concluded that Panathinaikos had still not paid these unspecified debts, which meant the December punishment became active.

As well as missing out on European club football for the next three seasons, the club must also pay a €100,000 fine that was originally suspended, having already been ordered to pay the same amount in December.

In a statement, UEFA said the sanction “shall take effect immediately.”

National champions 20 times, Panathinaikos are Greece’s most successful side in European club competition. They were European Cup runners-up in 1971 and reached the semi-finals of the same competition in 1985, when they lost to Liverpool, and 1996.

This season, however, they went out of the Europa League in the play-off round.

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Mo Salah Scores Twice As Liverpool Beat Roma 5-2 In Champions League Semi-Final First Leg

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Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino both scored twice as the Reds romped into a 5-0 lead after 68 minutes with two late away goals coming that could change the semi-final tie.

Liverpool have taken a firm grip on their UEFA Champions League semi-final on Tuesday evening after beating Roma 5-2 in the first leg at Anfield.

Mohamed Salah scored twice and set up goals for Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino, who added another to make it 5-0, before Edin Dzeko and Diego Perotti struck in the space of four minutes late on.

With the goals from the visitors, there is a slim chance of turning the tie round in next Wednesday’s return game in the Italian capital.

The eventual winners will play either Real Madrid or Bayern Munich in next month’s final in Kiev.

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Mo Salah Scores Twice As Liverpool Beat Roma 5-2 In Champions League Semi-Final First Leg

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Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino both scored twice as the Reds romped into a 5-0 lead after 68 minutes with two late away goals coming that could change the semi-final tie.

Liverpool have taken a firm grip on their UEFA Champions League semi-final on Tuesday evening after beating Roma 5-2 in the first leg at Anfield.

Mohamed Salah scored twice and set up goals for Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino, who added another to make it 5-0, before Edin Dzeko and Diego Perotti struck in the space of four minutes late on.

With the goals from the visitors, there is a slim chance of turning the tie round in next Wednesday’s return game in the Italian capital.

The eventual winners will play either Real Madrid or Bayern Munich in next month’s final in Kiev.

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Liverpool 5 Vs 2 Roma: Mohamed Salah Masterclass Guides Liverpool To First-leg Victory

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A Mohamed Salah masterclass guided Liverpool to a 5-2 home victory over Roma on Tuesday evening

Liverpool, who last reached the final in 2007, repeatedly breached the visitors’ naively high defensive line and scored five times in the opening 68 minutes at a raucous Anfield.

Mohamed Salah scored two goals and dished out two assists against his former club, while Roberto Firmino netted a brace and Sadio Mane put one behind the back of the net. 

With his side leading 5-0, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp took off Salah – and Roma gave themselves a chance for next week’s return leg at the Stadio Olimpico.

First Edin Dzeko lashed home from Radja Nainggolan’s pass, then Diego Perotti put a penalty into the top right corner after Milner handled Nainggolan’s shot.

Dzeko almost scored an improbable third as an extraordinary game neared its end when his long-range strike whistled over.

It was a dominant, shocking performance where Roma’s defense was non-existent. They were slow to react to Liverpool’s speed, gave the hosts too much space in the final third and were rightfully punished.

In the quarterfinals, Roma managed a 3-0 win in the second leg at home to go through. It’d take another 3-0 win (or 4-1) at this point–which would require another attacking onslaught and what few teams have been able to accomplish all season: silencing Salah & Co. over the course of 90 minutes.

LIVERPOOL (4-3-3): Karius; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, van Dijk, Robertson; Oxlade-Chamberlain (Wijnaldum 18′), Henderson, Milner; Salah (Ings 75′), Firmino (Klavan 93′), Mane

ROMA (3-4-2-1): Becker; Fazio, Manolas, Jesus (Perotti 67′); Florenzi, De Rossi (Gonalons 67′), Strootman, Kolarov; Under (Schick 46′), Nainggolan; Dzeko

KEY STATS

Alongside Adriano, Roberto Firmino is now the fastest player to 10 Champions League goals, taking just 11 appearances.

Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah have combined for six Champions League goals this season, twice as much as the next highest pairing.

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Liverpool 5 Vs 2 Roma: Mohamed Salah Masterclass Guides Liverpool To First-leg Victory

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A Mohamed Salah masterclass guided Liverpool to a 5-2 home victory over Roma on Tuesday evening

Liverpool, who last reached the final in 2007, repeatedly breached the visitors’ naively high defensive line and scored five times in the opening 68 minutes at a raucous Anfield.

Mohamed Salah scored two goals and dished out two assists against his former club, while Roberto Firmino netted a brace and Sadio Mane put one behind the back of the net. 

With his side leading 5-0, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp took off Salah – and Roma gave themselves a chance for next week’s return leg at the Stadio Olimpico.

First Edin Dzeko lashed home from Radja Nainggolan’s pass, then Diego Perotti put a penalty into the top right corner after Milner handled Nainggolan’s shot.

Dzeko almost scored an improbable third as an extraordinary game neared its end when his long-range strike whistled over.

It was a dominant, shocking performance where Roma’s defense was non-existent. They were slow to react to Liverpool’s speed, gave the hosts too much space in the final third and were rightfully punished.

In the quarterfinals, Roma managed a 3-0 win in the second leg at home to go through. It’d take another 3-0 win (or 4-1) at this point–which would require another attacking onslaught and what few teams have been able to accomplish all season: silencing Salah & Co. over the course of 90 minutes.

LIVERPOOL (4-3-3): Karius; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, van Dijk, Robertson; Oxlade-Chamberlain (Wijnaldum 18′), Henderson, Milner; Salah (Ings 75′), Firmino (Klavan 93′), Mane

ROMA (3-4-2-1): Becker; Fazio, Manolas, Jesus (Perotti 67′); Florenzi, De Rossi (Gonalons 67′), Strootman, Kolarov; Under (Schick 46′), Nainggolan; Dzeko

KEY STATS

Alongside Adriano, Roberto Firmino is now the fastest player to 10 Champions League goals, taking just 11 appearances.

Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah have combined for six Champions League goals this season, twice as much as the next highest pairing.

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Football Papers: All The Latest Football News And Transfer Gossip Today

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  • Arsenal’s next manager will be restricted to just a £50m summer transfer budget.
  • John McGinn says he loves Hibs but admits he wants to “test myself at a higher level”.
  • Manchester City are willing to sell John Stones this summer.
  • Swansea will challenge Celtic and Rangers in the race to sign Dundee midfielder Glen Kamara this summer.
  • Sir Alex Ferguson wanted to sign Ilkay Gundogan, Mats Hummels and Marco Reus for Manchester United before he announced his departure in 2013.
  • RB Leipzig attempted to sign Trent Alexander-Arnold in January when Liverpool tried to bring forward their deal to sign Naby Keita by six months.
  • Southampton star Sofiane Boufal has been banished to train on his own after a massive dressing-room bust-up with boss Mark Hughes.
  • Hull rugby league supremo Adam Pearson is heading a consortium trying to buy crisis club Sunderland.
  • Paul Pogba insists Jose Mourinho does not have a problem with his outlandish haircuts after the Manchester United manager’s recent comments.
  • Alexis Sanchez says Jose Mourinho told him he doesn’t like signing players in January and doesn’t expect him to settle in straight away.
  • Dani Alves has opened the door to a shock Barcelona return.
  • Manchester City have held talks with the agent of Napoli midfielder Jorginho despite the midfielder being heavily linked with a move to Liverpool.
  • The Football Association has been accused of exploitation by fans who face a 30 per cent price increase for FA Cup final tickets.
  • Leeds have planned a pre-season tour of Burma despite the UK government advising against ‘all but essential’ travel to the region.
  • Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde is considering his future at the club despite being days away from winning the double in his first season.
  • Manchester United’s contract rebel Marouane Fellaini has already been contacted by Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus, Monaco, Besiktas, West Ham and Leicester ahead of a summer move.
  • LA Galaxy forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic says he wants a Hollywood acting career once he finishes his career in Major League Soccer.
  • RB Leipzig forward Emil Forsberg has sparked fresh links with Arsenal with his recent social media activity suggesting he is leaving the Bundesliga side.
  • Arsenal defender Shkodran Mustafi insists he wants to stay at the club after Arsene Wenger leaves despite constant criticism from fans and media.
  • Liverpool midfielder Lazar Markovic is angry at the club for pricing him out of an Anfield exit despite not making an appearance for the club in three years.
  • Tottenham flop Fernando Llorente is open to quitting the club this summer.
  • Former Arsenal chairman Peter Hill-Wood says Arsene Wenger, who he brought to north London, was right to quit Arsenal.
  • Lionel Messi has vetoed Barcelona’s move for Antoine Griezmann allowing Manchester United to move into pole position to sign the Frenchman.
  • Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud told his team-mates that Wembley Stadium is his ‘garden’ because he is unbeaten at the ground.

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Michael Oliver To Referee FA Cup Final Between Manchester United And Chelsea

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Michael Oliver will referee the FA Cup final between Manchester United and Chelsea.

The Football Association announced on Tuesday that the 33-year-old from Durham would take charge of the showpiece match at Wembley, which will kick-off at 5.15pm on Saturday, May 19.

Michael Oliver was at the centre of controversy after his decision enabled Cristiano Ronaldo to put Madrid through to the semifinals 4-3 on aggregate.

The 33-year-old was heavily criticised by Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, who was sent off in the aftermath of the penalty award. Buffon told reporters after the match that Oliver had “a garbage bin for a heart,” while threats and abuse directed toward him and his wife, also a referee, was “strongly condemned” by UEFA.

He will be assisted by Lee Betts and Ian Hussin, with Lee Mason as the fourth official. Neil Swarbrick will be the first video assistant referee (VAR) in FA Cup Final history.

Michael Oliver told the official FA website that the support he had received in the aftermath of the Champions League final had boosted him.

“It was a weird few days,” he said. “But it was nice that so many people, both within the game and outside the game, were keen to offer their support.

“It was quite humbling, actually, and it meant a lot. I had people coming up to me in the street and people from inside the game were sending me messages of support. It’s a nice thing to know I’ve got that backing.”

He said he had been “very proud and humbled to receive the call” telling him he was taking charge of the cup final.

“As your career progresses it becomes a realistic target, but it’s not a call you ever expect to take,” he said. “This opportunity only comes around once in a referee’s career.”

Chairman of the FA Referees’ Committee David Elleray backed Oliver to be able to handle what is expected to also be a lively encounter on the touchline between rival managers Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte.

“Over a number of years, Michael has shown that he has a wise and calm head on relative youthful shoulders and he is an excellent role model for young referees,” said Elleray, himself the FA Cup final referee in 1994.

“Michael has shown that he is capable of controlling the most important matches in Europe, and in England, and we have every confidence that he and his team will enhance what promises to be an enthralling encounter.”

Both Manchester United and Chelsea will receive some 28,000 tickets for the final, which represents around 80 per cent of the seats available at the national stadium.

Ticket prices will range from £45 to £145 for adults, with concessions also available.

The FA confirmed Chelsea fans would occupy the east end of Wembley, with United in the west end, which has been “determined by the travel requirements of the majority of each club’s supporters”.

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James Rodriguez Was Depressed After Leaving Real Madrid – Juup Heynckes

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Bayern Munich boss Jupp Heynckes has revealed that James Rodriguez “was a little depressed” when leaving Real Madrid last summer.

James Rodriguez  fell out of favour at the Bernabeu last season, making just 13 league starts and being allowed to leave for Bayern on an initial two-year loan.

Following a slow start to life at the Allianz Arena, James has looked a much more complete player since Heynckes replaced Carlo Ancelotti in early October, playing a direct part in 17 goals.

Ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League semi-final first-leg clash between Bayern and Madrid in Bavaria, Heynckes told reporters: “He was a little depressed. I took care of him, I had lots of talks with him, and step by step he found confidence.

“He was a little depressed,” Heynckes told reporters at his pre-match news conference.

“I took care of him, I had lots of talks with him, and step by step he found confidence. He is more relaxed within the team.

“Our fans here, when they see him play football, they enjoy it. Above all he is a player who has fantasy, has an overview.

“He is more open-minded and gives the impression he feels well and has settled in Munich. I think this is most fundamental.

“He has been learning German, but as you know with Spanish speaking players it is difficult for them to learn. But I can speak with him.”

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Cristiano Ronaldo A More Complete Player Than Lionel Messi – Joshua Kimmich

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Bayern Munich’s Joshua Kimmich has admitted that he will have to be on top of his game to stop the ‘most complete’ player in the world when coming up against Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo.

Real Madrid travel to the Allianz Arena on Wednesday for the first leg of the Champions League semi-final tie

Cristiano Ronaldo has also scored in each of his last 12 matches overall, netting 22 goals during that spell, and Kimmich believes that the Portuguese edges Barcelona rival Lionel Messi for all-round ability.

“When it comes to goal quotas, Ronaldo is in the lead,” he told Bild. “Especially with regards to the goals in the Champions League. Messi is a completely different type of player. Ronaldo is perhaps more complete in terms of skills themselves.

“Messi is more a dribbler, Ronaldo the final player. I cannot say this one or that one [is better]. I am glad that I am allowed to witness both. Such a player as Ronaldo, you can only turn off as a whole team anyway. He is a goal machine, which has an insane goal quota. We have to make sure that he cannot continue his run.”

Ronaldo is aiming to reach his sixth Champions League final next month.

Meanwhile, Messi’s Barcelona crashed out in the quarter-final after suffering a shock 3-0 defeat to Roma

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Simon Mignolet Unhappy With Being Backup Goalkeeper At Liverpool

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Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet has admitted that he is unhappy serving as backup to Loris Karius.

The Belgian has not even been given an opportunity in recent league games when some players were rested with the Champions League in mind as the German has continued to guard the goal for Liverpool.

Simon Mignolet who lost his place in the Reds first team at Christmas, said that he can “absolutely not” continue on the substitutes bench.“It has been too long”, the goalkeeper told Belgian daily Het Laatste Nieuws.

“But you will never find me messing up the dressing room environment or lowering my levels in training as creating a negative vibe is completely useless.

“I had several conversations with the coach but I would rather not divulge the content.

“I was having a reasonably good season, and apart from the mistake against Arsenal, I don’t think there was much to blame myself for.”

The goalkeeper also appeared to question Klopp’s decision to chop and change goalkeepers at the start of the season, which didn’t allow him to settle down.

“Rotation or resting, whatever you call it, being in and out of the team, is definitely not the best way for a goalkeeper to perform at a high level for a whole season.”

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

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LONDON EVENING STANDARD

  • Danny Rose remains a target for Manchester United despite his lack of regular action for Tottenham this season.
  • Declan Rice will be offered a new contract by West Ham.

MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS

  • Manchester City have NO plans to sell John Stones this summer. And the England defender has indicated that he is happy with life at the Blues, despite having a difficult second half to his season.
  • Manchester City are interested in signing Napoli midfielder Jorginho as Pep Guardiola attempts to reinforce his midfield.
  • Manchester United have intensified their interest in Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred as they attempt to reinforce their midfield this summer. Man City are believed to have ended their interest in Fred.

LIVERPOOL ECHO

  • Roma owner James Pallotta says that Liverpool bagged themselves a bargain when they signed Mohamed Salah last summer – but Reds owner John Henry thought that he had “overpaid” for the Egyptian.

SUNDERLAND ECHO

  • A consortium involving ex-Leeds United, Hull City and Derby County director Adam Pearson are no longer involved in takeover talks with Sunderland AFC.

BIRMINGHAM MAIL

  • Aston Villa captain John Terry says he still has the ‘appetite’ to play football. Wolves star Conor Coady hopes that the Wolves success will carry on for years to come.

EXPRESS & STAR

  • Jake Livermore insists West Brom’s players do care about the future of the club and has vowed to keep fighting until the end of the season for the ‘brilliant’ Baggies fans.

THE DAILY ECHO

  • Saints are set to head off for a pre-season tour of China this summer as they strengthen links in the Far East following the takeover of Gao Jisheng.

LANCASHIRE TELEGRAPH

  • Scott Arfield and Dean Marney are set for Burnley exits this summer.

LEICESTER MERCURY

  • Ben Hamer says he has become a ghost at Leicester City, but he is determined to make an impact in the final games of the season to earn a new contract, either at City or at another club.

GET WEST LONDON

  • Ian Holloway has hinted that QPR could be on the search for a new striker this summer, as he looked to establish an ‘identity’ in his team.

YORKSHIRE EVENING POST

  • Leeds assistant manager Jamie Clapham praised the performance of Matthew Pennington after the on-loan Everton centre-back was called upon to negate Oli McBurnie in the weekend’s win over Barnsley.

NOTTINGHAM POST

  • Aitor Karanka has dropped a broad hint that Nottingham Forest might not offer Jack Hobbs a new contract, but the Reds boss hopes to give the defender another chance to play before the end of the season – and to prove he still has a future in the game.

THE ARGUS

  • Leo Ulloa’s future is up in the air as he aims for another big finish with Albion and an end to his Premier League goal famine.

THE STAR

  • Sheffield Wednesday skipper Tom Lees has backed defensive team mates Daniel Pudil and Frederico Venancio in their bid to get new contracts at Hillsborough.

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Soulful London Songstress Sharlene-Monique Releases Her Debut EP ‘Destiny’

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Her debut EP ‘Destiny’ (released April 13th, 2018) combines emotive, soulful-tinged vocals with inspiring songs of empowerment, love, and self-acceptance. Her soothing vocal tones have been compared to the likes of Lianne La Havas & Tweet.

Sharlene-Monique is an award-winning singer-songwriter, who began singing in church aged 4. Her debut single ‘YOU’ has been streamed over 135,000 times on Spotify, with 12,000 monthly listeners and won Best Solo, Best Inspirational and Music Video Of The Year at the Jump Music Video Awards 2017.

A Media Performance graduate, Identity Drama School attendee and founder of award nominated empowerment blog Be Uniquely You (http://beuniquelyyou.co.uk), Sharlene-Monique is now successfully tackling a new creative challenge; sharing her personal message of self-acceptance, self-love and self-empowerment to all who will lend their ear to her first release/debut single.

The multi-skilled musician hails from a past of singing dancing and teaching across the UK and Europe and has successfully earned her stripes in the lead up to a timely decision to begin practicing what she had so confidently shared to others for a number of years.

Speaking of her debut EP ‘Destiny’, Sharlene-Monique says, “It feels amazing to finally release my songs. I’ve had messages from people all over the world who heard ‘You’ and have asked for more music. I feel proud and passionate about every song and I hope people can connect to them.

Destiny is a combination of self-penned songs written by Sharlene and collaborations with the likes of Jake Isaac and her husband (and producer) Chris Morris (chrismorrismusic.com). All songs have been mixed by Grammy award winning mix engineer Alan Branch.

‘Destiny’ is now available for download via iTunes, Amazon, and Spotify.

DOWNLOAD via iTunes

STREAM via Spotify

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Researcher Explains How ‘Ogbono’ Soup Can Improve Efficacy Of Anti-Malaria Drugs

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A Pharmacist, Dr Chukwuma Agubata, has said that taking Irvingia Fat from nuts of Irvingia Gabonensis Var Excelsa, known as ‘Ogbono’ soup has helped to improve the efficacy of anti-malarial drugs.

Agubata, a researcher and lecturer in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, made the assertion when he spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Lagos.

He said that eating Ogbono soup while administering Artemether, an Anti-Malaria drug would improve the efficacy of the drug.

He said that Ogbono would assist the drug to pass through all the barriers to get to its destination in the body and start working properly.

According to him, the finding came out of a research work entitled “Novel Lipid Microparticles for Effective Delivery of Artemether Anti-Malaria Drug Using a Locally-Sourced Irvingia Fat from Nuts of Irvingia Gabonensis Var Excelsa (Ogbono).

“Malaria is an endemic disease and is a major cause of morbidity and mortality, and we also know that most malaria drugs are administered by mouth — the Artemether Anti-Malaria drugs.

“’But there is a major challenge which is the low water solubility of the drug which limits it dissolution and absorption into the blood stream; all this also affect the efficacy of the drug.

“’So, what we have done in this research is to improve the anti-malaria efficacy of Artemether drugs by formulating with Irvingia Fat (Ogbono) which is locally sourced so that there could be improved delivery and efficacy.

“In our research, we got a very good result and this shows that our local materials can actually improve the efficacy of some drugs that already exist,’’ he told NAN.

“The Ogbono was formulated as microparticles, where the fat from it was used to entrap the drug and it became a carrier for the drug to the bloodstream.

“So, if you take Ogbono soup while administering or taking Artemether, there should be an improvement as it will assist the drug to pass through all the barriers to get to its destination in the body and start working properly.’’

Agubata called for support from the government and private organisations to take the research to the next level.

“We intend to take this research to the next level with the support of corporate organisations and the government.

“We will be able to do local mobilisation and mass produce the locally sourced materials so that Nigerians will benefit.

“Going forward, there is hope in reducing the burden of malaria with this research,’’ he said.

NAN

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Bambam of BBNaija Rakes In N25m From ‘Bam Beauty Oil’ Launch

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Ex-BBNaija housemate, Bamike Olawunmi, popularly called BamBam, on Monday evening launched a skin care product, “Bam beauty oil” to mark her 29th birthday and realized N25 million.

The event took place in Abuja according to what she posted on her instagram page.

Bambam Rakes In N25m From ‘Bam Beauty Oil’ Launch

Bambam Rakes In N25m From ‘Bam Beauty Oil’ Launch

BamBam said that she sold the first 5,000 pieces of the product at N5,000 each and grossed home N25 million.

The newsmen reports this happened about 24 hours after the end of the third edition of the 2018 BBNaija TV reality show titled “Double Wahala’’.

She unveiled the product at a party bash hosted for her by Famouspotatoesng in Abuja late on Monday.

Also the family members of Teddy, another housemate in the BBNaija reality show as well as BamBam’s other fans graced the party.

BamBAm was one of the housemates in the just concluded TV reality show in the BBNaija before her eviction from the house.

The newsmen also reports that while Bambam was in the house, she was romantically involved with Teddy A who was her strategic partner.

NAN reports that the pair appeared to have taken their love to another level, as Teddy A, organised a surprise birthday party for her.

While Bam Bam enjoys the benefits of being a part of the third edition of the 2018 BBNaija TV reality, her colleague, Cynthia Nwadiora, better known as Cee-C, was at the receiving end of fame.

It was gathered that Cee-C, who emerged as the first runner up of the show, was physically assaulted when she landed the Murtala Mohammed International Airport yesterday.

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NIMC Says ‘It Can’t Produce National Identity Cards For Everyone’

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The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) has disclosed that it cannot produce national identity cards for everyone who enrolled for it despite the high public demand for it.

While stating that the national identity cards that are ready are mainly for people who enrolled in 2012 and 2013, the commission also noted that it was adopting a first-come, first-served approach.

The Director-General, NIMC, Aliyu Aziz, stated these at a press conference in Abuja on Monday, which was organised to announce the 4th International Annual Meeting of the ID4Africa 2018 Movement being hosted by Nigeria.

“The card that we have now is the best in the whole world, but it is difficult to really produce it for everyone. In the NIMC, the focus is first come, first served, and this is for those who enrolled in 2012 and 2013, as they are the ones who have got their cards,” he stated.

Aziz explained that the focus of the agency for the next three years would be on the National Identification Number and not on the card.

He said, “The focus is actually on the National Identification Number. Your NIN gives you your identity and not the card. Historically, we focused ourselves on the card to be the output of what we do; but when the country went into recession, we stepped back and checked and found out that in the United States, it is the Social Security Number that connects all the other agencies.

“In the United Kingdom, it is the National Insurance Number; and in India where recently they enrolled about 1.4 billion people, they only gave the number. This means you can now pull your own NIN and then print it the way you want it.

“Recently in Nigeria, we did the Bank Verification Number; and again, what you get is a number and not a BVN card. However, this does not mean that we won’t give out cards, because it is there in the law that we should issue a general multipurpose card that is secure.”

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Mayorkun And Dad Reunite After Years Apart (PHOTO)

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Nigerian singer, Mayorkun has shared the heartfelt story of reunion with his Dad after two good years apart.

The singer took to Instagram to share the moment of reunion as it happened in Texas, United States. According to him, he was still ‘Mayowa’ the last time he saw his father and now he’s reuniting with him as a superstar singer widely known as “Mayorkun”.

Mayorkun shared a lovely father and son photo with his dad whom he reunited with after his show in Texas and wrote;

Lol I hadn’t seen my dad in over 2 years, Yesterday; for the very first time he met me as ‘Mayorkun’ & not ‘Mayowa’ as he’s used to! Haha..

 

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How Nigeria’s Naira Fared Against US Dollar (April 23)

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The Naira started the week with 12 kobo depreciation to N360.54 per dollar in the Investors and Exporters (I&E) window of the foreign exchange market.

Data from the Financial Market Dealers Quote (FMDQ) showed that the indicative exchange rate for the I&E window rose to N360.54 per dollar, on Monday, April 23, from N360.42 per dollar on Friday last week, translating to 12 kobo loss in the value of naira.

The depreciation was occasioned by a 3 percent marginal decrease in the volume of dollars traded in the I&E window.

The window yesterday had a turnover of $217.57 million, down from $223.78 million recorded on Friday last week.

It was gathered that local currency yesterday remained stable at N363 per dollar for the seventh consecutive day in the parallel market.

It was also learnt that the local currency maintained the same rate of N445 to Euro but appreciated against Pound. 

Last week, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in its relentless move to guarantee liquidity in the foreign exchange market, intervened in the Retail Secondary Market Intervention Sales (SMIS) segment of the market to the tune of $396.18million.

Meanwhile, the World Bank has in a recent data it provided said that over 118 million Nigerian adults do not have bank accounts.

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“I Want To Play Coachella Next Year” – Adekunle Gold Sets Coachella Target

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The absence of Nigerian superstar, Wizkid at the world acclaimed arts and music festival, Coachella has made the event become high-point of discussion in Nigeria.

It is believed that Wizkid’s non-appearance at the event is a lost opportunity for African music at the a big global stage like Coachella.

Meanwhile, top Nigerian singer, Adekunle Gold has offered to represent Africa at the big Coachella stage, in 2019. The singer rolled out a tweet saying;

I want to play Coachella next year

 

However, there has been mixed reaction on whether the singer deserves the Coachella stage considering his impact in the area of urban high life music genre.

Do you think Adekunle Gold deserves the opportunity to represent Africa at the Coachella Stage next year?

Drop Your Comments!!

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