Stoke City Rejects Burnley’s £3m Bid For Jonathan Walters

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Burnley have had a £3m offer for forward Jonathan Walters rejected by Premier League rivals Stoke City, according to a report.

Burnley are looking to strengthen their squad as they prepare for a second-successive campaign of top-flight football, having avoided the drop with relative ease last term.

It is claimed by the Daily Mail that Walters has attracted the eye of Burnley boss Sean Dyche, but his initial bid fell short of the Potters’ valuation.

Jonathan Walters may be keen to force a move away, however, with the Republic of Ireland international being restricted to 13 top-flight starts last season under Mark Hughes.

Burnley, who finished four points below Stoke in 2016-17, already have a number of Irishmen in their ranks, including Jeff Hendrick, Robbie Brady, Kevin Long and Stephen Ward.

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Lucas Lima Denies Barcelona Offer But Admits Crystal Palace Interest

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Barcelona target Lucas Lima has denied receiving an offer from the Catalan giants but revealed he has been targeted by Crystal Palace.

The Brazil midfielder, 26, is out of contract at Santos at the end of the year and has been tipped to join Barcelona in January. However, Lima says Barca have not made an offer for him.

“I have not received any offer [from Barcelona],” he is quoted as saying in Marca.

Lima did, however, reveal that he has received offers from elsewhere.

“When I decide about my future, Santos will be the first to know it,” he added. “It’s my priority. I had offers from Crystal Palace, and a fortune from China, but they were not the teams I expected. I know that if I play well with Santos I will continue in the national team, I will be closer to the World Cup and that is very important for me.

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52 Nigerians, Gambians, Other Migrants Die In Sahara Desert As IOM Rescues 600

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At least 52 migrants, mostly from The Gambia, Nigeria, Senegal and Cote d’Ivoire, have died in Sahara Desert, even as the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) said it had rescued no fewer than 600 people since April 2017 through a new search and rescue operation that targeted migrants stranded in the prominent Desert.

44 Nigerian And Ghanaian Migrants ‘Die Of Thirst’ In Sahara Desert

This disclosure was made by the UN migration agency in a statement issued on Tuesday.

“We are enhancing our capacity to assist vulnerable migrants stranded in Northern Agadez, towards the Niger-Libya border.

“Saving lives in the desert is becoming more urgent than ever.

“Since the beginning of the year we have been receiving frequent calls to rescue victims who embark on this route‎,” Giuseppe Loprete, Niger Chief of Mission for IOM, said.

The Nigerian woman who survived 10 days in Sahara Desert

The Nigerian woman who survived 10 days in Sahara Desert (NAN)

According to him, a 22-year-old woman was the only female among the survivors of a rescue mission on May 28.

“She left Nigeria in early April hoping for a better future in Europe.

“There were 50 migrants on the pick-up truck when it left Agadez for Libya, but only six are still alive today,” Loprete said.

Narrating her ordeal, the Nigerian survivor said:

“We were in the desert for 10 days. After five days, the driver abandoned us.

“He left with all of our belongings, saying he was going to pick us up in a couple of hours, but he never did.”

During the next two days, 44 of the migrants died which persuaded the six left to start walking to look for help.

“We had to drink our own pee to survive,” she said.

On June 9, another 92 migrants were also rescued through an IOM search and rescue operation; among them were 30 women and children.

More recently, 24 migrants were taken to Seguedine, where one died on arrival.

“Among the 23 survivors are migrants from Gambia, Nigeria, Senegal and Cote d’Ivoire. It was not clear for how long they had been walking in the deserts of central Niger.

“They had been in a group of 75 migrants in three different cars, eventually abandoned by smugglers during the journey north,” Loprete said.

NAN quoted IOM as saying it had recorded 52 deaths since it launched a new project “Migrants Rescue and Assistance in Agadez Region” (MIRAA) in April.

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The Basement Gig Gets Lit at Its Sixth Edition

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The sixth edition of The Basement Gig had a great turn out as music lovers came out in good numbers, as the event held for the first time on the mainland, at the Cielo Lounge in Ikeja G.R.A, Lagos on June 22, 2017.

Performers at the event were some of the finest emerging artistes, who did not fall short of expectations, as they thrilled the audience with electrifying performances. Rapper, Triq kicked things off by performing songs off his recently released mixtape titled ‘While You Were Sleeping’. Next up was Afro-Pop act, King Perry, who came all the way from Owerri and got everyone on their feet with his performance. Kayode thrilled the audience next and he was followed by an enchanting performance by Bella, as she got the house singing along to her single titled ‘Radio’. Tolani brought the event to a close as he performed with his 3-man band.

City FM’s DJ Six7even got the audience signing and dancing with sensational mixes as well. The event was hosted by Cool FM’s Kemi Smallzz and co-hosted by Khlo.

 











The Basement Gig Gets Lit at Its Sixth Edition



 

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The Late Episode : All The Latest Football News And Transfer Rumors This Night

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LONDON EVENING STANDARD

  • Tiemoue Bakayoko has arrived in London to complete negotiations over his £35.1m transfer to Chelsea.
  • Meanwhile, Chelsea’s search for a centre half has suffered another blow after Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri insisted Leonardo Bonucci won’t be leaving the club. The Blues will now concentrate their efforts on buying Van Dijk, who has been valued at £70m by Southampton.
  • Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will seek assurances over his first-team role at Arsenal before deciding whether to stay at the club.
  • Chelsea defender Nathan Ake would be welcomed back to Bournemouth “with open arms”, according to Cherries defender Charlie Daniels.

MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS

  • Manchester United could continue to reinforce their squad after they complete their four priority signings.
  • Alvaro Morata’s wife has fuelled the possibility her husband could complete his protracted transfer to Manchester United by following the club on Instagram.
  • Teenage footballer Ethan Galbraith has admitted he has agreed a contract with Manchester United.

LIVERPOOL ECHO

  • Liverpool midfielder Emre Can is relishing the prospect of playing alongside new signing Mohamed Salah next season.
  • Everton’s pursuit of Sandro Ramirez could be set for a new twist – with reports in Spain linking Real Madrid with a move for the striker.

NEWCASTLE CHRONICLE

  • Newcastle United are preparing to send Adam Armstrong on loan for the first half of next season.
  • Current Ipswich and former Sunderland manager Mick McCarthy believes the Black Cats should make a sensational summer move for Newcastle United forward Daryl Murphy.

SUNDERLAND ECHO

  • Lazio are closing in on a deal for Sunderland forward Fabio Borini as the club’s major summer overhaul continues.
  • Jurgen Klinsmann has ruled out the prospect of managing Sunderland in the near future.

BIRMINGHAM MAIL

  • Aston Villa are hoping to negotiate the sale of Spanish midfielder Carles Gil with Real Betis stepping up their pursuit.
  • Aston Villa defender Jordan Amavi is being considered by French giants Paris Saint-Germain, according to reports in France.

EXPRESS AND STAR

  • Wolves’ summer clear-out is expected to escalate further after the departures of Silvio, George Saville and Jed Wallace.
  • Sevilla have joined the chase for Aston Villa’s Jordan Amavi as the race for the full-back-turned-winger hots up.

YORKSHIRE POST

  • Sheffield United assistant manager Alan Knill is in discussions with the club regarding a new deal – following on from the news that boss Chris Wilder has agreed an improved contract in principle with the Blades.
  • Hudderfield Town are working towards completing a deal to sign Montpellier striker Steve Mounie for a club record fee.

STOKE SENTINEL

  • Jon Walters is the subject of a reported £3m offer from Burnley, according to reports.
  • Stoke City are chasing former Liverpool centre half Martin Skrtel.
  • Stoke are being named among a cluster of clubs said to be interested in Thorgan Hazard.

THE DAILY ECHO

  • Southampton are believed to be nearing an agreement for Mauricio Pellegrino’s first signing as Saints boss – with the club pursuing a deal worth just over £5m for Lech Poznan’s highly rated centre back Jan Bednarek.

LEICESTER MERCURY

  • Leicester City’s new assistant manager Michael Appleton said he couldn’t turn down the opportunity to work in the Premier League.
  • Claudio Ranieri “wants to forget” his spell as Leicester City manager as he looks to the future with new club Nantes.

READING POST

  • Everton are closing in on a deal for QPR winger Josh Bowler.

EVENING TIMES

  • Jimmy Calderwood admits the loss of Kenny McLean to Rangers would be another body blow to Aberdeen ahead of the new campaign.
  • Aberdeen have confirmed the arrival of Birmingham City forward Greg Stewart on a season-long loan deal.

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Dani Alves Bids Juventus Fans Goodbye

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Dani Alves looks to be on his way to Manchester City, as he bid Juventus and its fans farewell on social media.

No official statement has been made , but it is reported that the Brazil defender has agreed a deal with City.

And Alves might have confirmed that, with his farewell message to the Serie A club on Instagram.

“I would like to thank all the Juventus fans for the year I’ve had, to my team-mates who welcomed me like the professionals they are, for a club that wins and reaches finals,” he wrote.

“I think that my respect for this club and its supporters was my dedication, my passion and all my effort to make the club greater every single day.

“I apologise to the Juventus fans if sometimes they thought I had done something to offend them. I never had that intention, I just live very spontaneously and few people understand it… even though it appears that I am not perfect, my heart is pure.

“Today our professional relationship ends and I will carry with me all of those who with love and true heart make Juve a great club.

“As everyone knows, I always say what I think and feel… so I feel that I should say thank you to Mr Marotta for the opportunity he gave me, he’s a great professional and someone who loves his job like few others.

“I don’t play football for money, I play football because I love the profession and those who are part of it. I leave it up to you to judge what I have done and worked for.

“I love football and money will never take me to any other place.”

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Sirigu Joins Torino From PSG

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Savatore Sirigu has left Paris Saint Germain, after terminating his contract and will join Torino.

Sirigu was out on loan all of last season at Sevilla and Osasuna and despite having one year left on his PSG contract, has left the club.

The Italian goalie will be replacing Joe Hart, who was on loan at Torino, but has now returned to City.

“The club would like to thank ‘Salva’ for his steadfast professionalism and wish him all the best for the new challenges that await him in his homeland,” a PSG statement read.

The 30-year-old had previously spoken of feeling forced out of PSG and he was delighted to complete his move to Torino.

“I am very happy to be part of this club,” Sirigu told the PSG website. “I chose Torino because they wanted me strongly and for years have been pursuing a concrete project with exponential growth.

“The club and the president have made me feel important and I thank them for that. I am honoured to be part of a club that has a unique story.”

PSG are among the European giants to have been linked with a move for AC Milan’s 18-year-old goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma, who has a year remaining on his San Siro contract.

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Over 2,000 PDP Members Decamp To APC In Rivers

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About two thousand members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Degema Local Government Area of Rivers State have defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state.

In his welcome speech to the defectors on Monday at Tombia, Degema LGA, during an empowerment programme, a chieftain of the APC in Rivers, Dr. Sokonte Davies, who is a former member of the House of Representatives, representing Degema/Bonny constituency, described APC as the only party that was capable of meeting the aspirations of Nigerians.

Davies further stressed that the APC was a party every member should be proud of, in view of its commitment to the people and abhorrence to violence.

The chieftain, who is also the Executive Director, Marine and Operations of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), admonished APC members to remain committed to the party and he assured other politicians wishing to defect to the party of a level-playing field.

Also speaking, the Chairman of APC in Degema LGA, Kesibo Gogo-Abite, said that the defectors took the right decision of joining the focused party.

He said APC had a transformatory mission to reposition Nigeria for accelerated development.

Gogo-Abite urged the defectors to remain steadfast and work tirelessly for the progress of the party in their various communities, the LGA and Rivers state, stressing that the defection marked a new chapter in the political history of the area.

Two of the defectors, Rev. Obubeleye Waribo and Madam Trust Davies, in their separate speeches, stated that their decision to quit the PDP was informed by the leadership style of the APC leaders at all levels, which they described as people oriented.

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UNILORIN, OAU React As Report Claims 38 Nigerian Universities Plan To Increase Tuition Fees

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The management of the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) has said that the institution is not among 38 Nigerian universities that have purportedly increased their tuition fees.

Also in a remarkable denial of a news item circulated by the News Agency of Nigeria on Monday, the management of Obafemi Awolowo University, (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun State, has said that it was not planning to increase its tuition fee to N55,700.

NAN had quoted the chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, University of Ibadan Chapter, Dr. Deji Omole, as having made the claim in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja on Monday.

However, in a press statement made available on Tuesday, June 27, the OAU Public Relations Officer, Abiodun Olarewaju, explained that the tuition fee remained as increased three years ago.

The statement read: “The attention of the authorities of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, has been drawn to a news item that ’38 Varsities increase tuition fees’, where OAU was listed among the universities that have increased their tuition fees.

“Although there may be paucity of funds from the Federal Government in running the institutions of higher learning, which might have prompted some universities to upwardly review their fees, but the situation in OAU is quite different.

“For the avoidance of doubt, there is no meeting, either of the university management or Senate, where the fee increment was announced; and the vice chancellor of the university, Prof. Tope Ogunbodede, has not contemplated on increasing any fee in OAU.

“In actual fact, his administration is poised to making the welfare of staff and students a topmost priority.”

“Accordingly, the VC has advised the students, their parents and/or guardians to completely disregard as unfounded rumour the said news item.

“The administrative and academic affairs of OAU will not be run in secret. The VC will not renege on his pledge of running a very open and transparent administration.”

In the same vein, a statement signed by the Head, Corporate Affairs of the university, Mr Kunle Akogun, and made available to journalists in Ilorin on Tuesday said the report was meant to cause unnecessary panic among Nigerian parents.

It reads: “The attention of the management of the University of Ilorin has been drawn to news reports in some newspapers today listing Unilorin among 38 universities that have increased their tuition fees.”

“We want to state categorically that there is no iota of truth in the report. The university’s management has never met to decide on any fees increase because we are still running the 2016/2017 academic session. And in any case, Unilorin, being a federal government institution doesn’t charge tuition fees, as tuition is free in public universities. The little charges we collect are for utilities and not for tuition.”

“So, that report was meant to cause unnecessary panic among Nigerian parents.”

Meanwhile, here is a list of institutions that were reported to have made plans to increase tuition fees below:

  1. UNILAG N14,500 N63,500
  1. ABU N27,000 N41,000

  2. UNN N60,450 N66,950

  3. OAU N19,700 N57,700

  4. UNIZIK N20,100 N65,920

  5. BUK N26,000 N40,000

  6. UNIABUJA N39,300 N42,300

  7. UDU N32,000 N43,000

  8. NOUN N36,000 N41,000

  9. UNIBEN N12,000 N49,500

  10. UNILORIN N16,000 N75,500

  11. FUTA N13,560 N83,940

  12. FUTMINNA N20,000 N37,000

  13. FUNAAB N18,250 N33,000

  14. UNICAL N30,500 N42,750

  15. UNIUYO N71,000 N84,250

  16. FCET Akoka N16,000 N40,000

  17. Osun Varsity N95,000 N135,500

  18. ANSU N76,000 N139,000

  19. LASU N96,750 N158,250

  20. IBBU N25000 N52,000

  21. IMSU N120,000 N150,000

  22. PLASU N50,000 N100,000

  23. MAPOLY N57,000 N75,000

  24. Ibadan Poly N30,000 N50,000

  25. Abia Poly N56,550 N61,000

  26. Auchi Poly N14,800 N28,000

  27. Osustech N70,000 N80,000

  28. ESUT N104,900 N124,900

  29. KWARAPOLY N28,000 N44,000

  30. LAUTECH N65,000 N72,500

  31. TASUED N66,500 N76,500

  32. Afe Babalola N675,000 N1,075,000

  33. Igbinedion N540,000 N820,000

  34. Crawford N400,000 N600,000

  35. Redeemers N545,000 N605,000

  36. Covenant N774,500 N814,500

  37. Benson Idahosa N284,300 N1,150,000.00

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23 Nigerians Deported From Spain For Committing Various Offences

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The Spanish Government on Tuesday deported 23 Nigerians for committing various offences in the country, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

They were deported barely five days after 34 Nigerians were sent home from six European countries for committing immigration-related offences.

NAN reports that 34 Nigerians were jointly deported by six European countries on June 22 for committing immigration-related offences.

The deportees were sent back home from Switzerland, Germany, Iceland, Austria, Belgium and Hungary.

NAN gathered that the new set of deportees arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMlA) Lagos, at about 6.40 a.m on Tuesday.

The new deportees, comprising 21 males and two females, were brought back in a privilege style aircraft with registration number EC-IZO.

Joseph Alabi, the spokesman of the Lagos Airport Police Command, confirmed the development to NAN.

Mr. Alabi said the deportees were received by officers of the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS), the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and the Police.

He said that others also on ground to receive them were officials of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

According to him, nine of the deportees, who were deported for drug-related offences, were handed over to the NDLEA.

He said that two others, who were deported for criminal offences, were handed over to the police.

Mr. Alabi said the remaining 12 deportees, accused of breaching the country’s immigration rules, were profiled and allowed to go to their respective destinations.

(NAN)

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Newcastle Back Rafa Benitez Transfer Plans Despite Lack Of Signings

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Newcastle have moved to ease Rafa Benitez fears over the club’s transfer policy so far this summer.

Benitez has grown frustrated with the lack of activity as he prepares for life back in the Premier League.

Reports this weekend claimed Benitez could walk away from St James’ Park after becoming disillusioned over the failing recruitment drive.

Newcastle have signed Christian Atsu from Chelsea but are yet to add anyone else.

But Benitez has been assured that owner Mike Ashley’s promise of “every last penny” the club generates from promotion and player sales to invest in the squad remains intact.

Having seen his hand strengthened by the departure of chief scout Graham Carr last week, Benitez is now hoping for decisive action with several of his targets having already fallen by the wayside.

Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham’s decision to opt for Swansea rather than Tyneside came as a blow, although it has been reported that the London club was unwilling to allow the 19-year-old to join Newcastle.

Goalkeeper Willy Caballero appears set to join Chelsea, while a deal for Eibar defender Florian Lejeune remains on the table, but still some way from completion.

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Benfica’s Luka Jovic Joins Eintracht Frankfurt On Two-year Loan Deal

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Eintracht Frankfurt have signed young Benfica forward Luka Jovic on a two-year loan deal.

The Bundesliga club have an option to buy the 19-year-old, who joined Benfica from Red Star Belgrade in 2016.

Luka Jovic, who progressed through the ranks at Red Star Belgrade’s academy, joined Benfica in February 2016 but mainly featured for the Portuguese club’s B team and made just one senior league appearance.

Renowned for being a wonderkid on Football Manager, Jovic is an exciting talent, with the 19-year-old having much time on his side to develop further.

Jovic told Frankfurt’s official website“The level in Portugal is not comparable to this. I feel a huge anticipation and am incredibly grateful that the concord allows me to take this step.

Frankfurt chairman Fredi Bobic said: “We are happy that this loan has come about and we hope Luka will be quickly acclimatised.”

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Liverpool Unlikely To Face Disciplinary Action Over Virgil van Dijk

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Liverpool are set to escape punishment from the Premier League after allegedly tapping up Virgil van Dijk.

Southampton had asked the Premier League to investigate an alleged illegal approach for Van Dijk from Liverpool after reports emerged the player had told Jurgen Klopp he wanted to join the Merseyside club.

The Reds later ended their interest in signing the defender and publicly apologised to Southampton.

A preliminary investigation was launched by the Premier League but has stalled as there is insufficient evidence to support Southampton’s claim.

Unless new information comes to light there will not be any more progress with the inquiry, effectively allowing Liverpool to avoid a sanction.

Strict rules govern transfers, with clubs able to negotiate terms with players only if they are out of contract or once a fee has been agreed with the seller. The laws also govern indirect approaches via an intermediary.

Liverpool’s statement on June 7 also added that the club had ended any interest in the Southampton centre-back Virgil van Dijk

Van Dijk signed a six-year contract last May, and Southampton chairman Ralph Krueger recently said the club could realistically turn down a £60 million bid for the Netherlands international.

“Can we? Yes,” Krueger said. “We do not need to sell any player for the first time since I’ve been here.”

In April, Liverpool were given a two-year academy transfer ban, with the second year suspended, for “tapping up” a Stoke City youngster.

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Swansea City Close To Signing £11m-rated Las Palmas Midfielder Roque Mesa

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Swansea are in advanced talks to sign Las Palmas midfielder Roque Mesa for a deal worth £11m.

The Premier League club have beaten off competition from European rivals Roma and Sevilla to land the 28-year-old, who would be Swansea’s first signing of the summer.

We’re told that while the deal is progressing as planned, it has not been finalised as yet. The Spaniard has made 126 appearances for Las Palmas since making his debut in 2011.

Mesa played 35 La Liga games last season, scoring one goal.

Chairman Huw Jenkins has said Swansea want to sign a central midfielder and a striker, with Chelsea forward Tammy Abraham close to agreeing a season-long loan.

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Leicester Midfielder Nampalys Mendy Wants To Quit Club For Bordeaux

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Leicester midfielder Nampalys Mendy could be set for a return to France with Bordeaux after reportedly saying he wants to join the Ligue 1 club.

The 25-year-old moved to then-Premier League champions Leicester from Nice last summer on a four-year contract, for a £13m fee.

But his season was blighted by an ankle injury which limited him to just nine appearances in all competitions.

Nantes, who recently appointed former Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri as head coach, have been linked with a move for Mendy, but Mendy’s heart is said to be set on a move to Bordeaux.

“I heard about the interest of Nantes but neither me nor my adviser have been contacted,” Mendy said told L’Equipe. “Anyway, since my adviser talked to me about the possibility of joining Bordeaux, I’m set on it.”

‘I’ve lost a year in England because of a failed ankle surgery, which unfortunately necessitated a second operation in March. Even though I am not 100 per cent yet, I have just returned from an excellent rehabilitation phase.

‘And now I have the hope of rallying the Girondins (Bordeaux) fairly quickly. It’s even an obsession.’

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Daily Roundup: Latest Football News Content Across Europe

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France

Ousmane Dembele has travelled to England to speak to Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola about a move to the Premier League side. It’s unknown whether it is with the permission of Borussia Dortmund. (Le 10 Sport)

Paris Saint-Germain have four main transfer targets this summer – Monaco duo Kylian Mbappe and Fabinho, Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma and Borussia Dortmund left-back Raphael Guerreiro. (Le Parisien)

 

Germany

Borussia Dortmund aren’t worried about losing Dembele this summer. They have put a €90m (£79.3m) asking price on the 20-year-old Frenchman but despite interest from across Europe, they haven’t entered in any negotiations to sell the player and say they are unlikely to let him go. (Bild)

Italy

With Roma aware that Radja Nainggolan’s transfer value will only decrease in the future, they are open to selling the 29-year-old. Manchester United could make a €45m (£39.6m) bid for the midfielder. (La Gazzetta dello Sport)

Chelsea are willing to offer €68m (£60m) for Alex Sandro. Although Juventus don’t want to sell their left-back, he’s tempted by a move and has told his agents he wants to leave. (La Stampa)

But Chelsea transfer target Leonardo Bonucci won’t be leaving Juventus. Manager Max Allegri has blocked a potential move. (Corriere dello Sport)

Donnarumma’s family have urged the Real Madrid transfer target to stay at AC Milan. The goalkeeper rejected a new deal at his current club, but there’s growing speculation he’ll reconsider. (La Gazzetta dello Sport)

Spain

Barcelona are set to activate the repurchase clause in Everton winger Gerard Deulofeu’s contract. The Catalan club can bring the Spaniard back to the Nou Camp for €12m (£10.5m) until June 30, but are likely to do so before the deadline. (Sport)

Denis Suarez has called on Arsenal right-back Hector Bellerin to move to the Nou Camp, saying: “The people want the best at Barcelona and I hope Bellerin can come.” (Radio Marca)

If Barcelona fail to sign Bellerin, they have lined up Benfica’s Nelson Semedo, who’s also a Manchester United transfer target, Southampton’s Cedric Soares or Valencia’s Joao Cancelo as back-ups. (Mundo Deportivo)

Guangzhou Evergrande want €40m (£35m) for Barcelona transfer targetPaulinho. But the Catalan side aren’t willing to pay more than €25m (£22m) for the former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder. (Sport)

Santos have approached FIFA to denounce a supposed harassment of their midfielder Lucas Lima by Barcelona. (Marca)

Real Madrid will officially announce the signing of Theo Hernandez from neighbours Atletico Madrid next week. (Marca)

Real Betis are closing in on the signing of Middlesbrough right-back Antonio Barragan. (AS)

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Everton Fight Off Competition From Arsenal To Complete Signing Of Henry Onyekuru

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Everton look to have completed the signing of Nigerian forward Henry Onyekuru from Belgium side Eupen.

Henry Onyekuru, 20, was the top scorer in Belgium last season and will be loaned to Anderlecht for the upcoming campaign.

The midfielder had sporadically been linked with Arsenal and West Ham earlier this summer.

He had £6.8m release clause in his contract and his advisers had also been in talks with other clubs, including Arsenal and West Ham.

The 20-year-old, who doesn’t qualify for a work permit yet, will be loaned to Anderlecht for next season (doesn’t qualify for work permit yet).

The exciting forward revealed back in December that he dreamed of playing in England and north London was his ideal destination.

Onyekuru said: “I believe I have the level to one day play in the Champions League.

“The Premier League is my dream league, although I would rather go to Arsenal.

“Football was my relaxation after school. With my friends, we watched the Premier League every weekend.

“I’m a huge Arsenal fan, Thierry Henry is my idol. Now I’m a professional footballer, I try to copy him as much as possible.

“I look back to the games I saw as a boy, but I also regularly watch videos on YouTube to see how he did certain things.”

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Chelsea Considering Summer Bid For Sevilla Winger Vitolo

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Chelsea boss Antonio Conte is considering a move for Sevilla winger Vitolo, according to the Daily Mirror.

Antonio Conte wants to bring in a player on Eden Hazard’s side of the front three, and Vitolo fits the bill perfectly as a right-footed attacker who favours playing on the left.

The Spain international is also a reliable goalscorer from out wide, and has occasionally played centrally as a number ten Chelsea Considering Summer Bid For Sevilla Winger Vitoloor a centre-forward.

Napoli forward Dries Mertens was also linked with a move to Stamford Bridge, while Riyad Mahrez seems increasingly likely to pick Arsenal over other interested clubs.

Vitolo looks a strong alternative, however, having weighed in with ten goals and seven assists for Sevilla last season, and helping the club to three Europa League wins in his four years on their books.

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Rayo Vallecano Want To Re-sign Southampton Goalkeeper Paulo Gazzaniga

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Rayo Vallecano are looking to re-sign Southampton goalkeeper Paulo Gazzaniga, reports AS.

Paulo Gazzaniga has returned to Southampton after spending the 2016/17 season on loan at Rayo.

The Spanish second-tier outfit are keen to bring the Argentine goalkeeper back to the club and are willing to wait to secure a deal. The player himself is open to a return to the Madrid-based club.

Michel, Rayo’s coach, said of the keeper: “I love his commitment. He arrived as an outsider, but became a heavyweight of the dressing room. In addition to his talent, he is a leader.”

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Dear President Buhari, Your Voice Note Is A Quit Notice

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Dear President Buhari, Your Voice Note Is A Quit Notice – Mayowa Tijani

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On February 1, 2017, after series of deliberations with a friend of mine, who is a consultant with one of the largest consulting firms in the world, we decided we would draw up a solution to the Nigerian problem, however feeble our ideas would be.

This article was written by Mayowa Tijani and was first published on TheCable. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

We went through virtually all development roadmaps employed by Nigeria in her endless journey to becoming a world power. We rigorously explored the latest plan; The Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP). Consciously or otherwise, we began to explore the possibility of a Nigeria where every region was a strength and not a weakness.

We decided that education in the southwest could return to what it was in the days when expatriates sought to drink from our wells of knowledge. We planned for self-sufficient agriculture in the north. In our heads and drafted plans, we built irrigation systems in many northern states. Our vision boards, and data sheets set up enviable refineries in the southsouth. We created complimentary competition between Lagos and Aba, to lead the country’s commercial revolution. We literally spent months, building a new Nigeria.

This work is far from done, but one thing we’ve acknowledged and planned consciously and unconsciously is a day when Nigeria will no longer be Nigeria. When the old Nigeria would have become Biafra, Oduduwa Republic, Arewa Caliphate — or what have you. But we knew that Nigeria as Nigeria, but working as a federal system with proper devolution of power was better. We hope that day never comes, however, we planned for a Nigeria where we can work as one and also work as 10 different countries.

Today, I’m not a development expert, but based on the number of researches I have read, the volumes of development plans I have consumed, the tonnes of PDF files that have taken sleep off my blood-shot eyes, I know for sure that Nigeria is better together, but may survive apart — after a bloody separation process. This is the only reason why I do not join on the secession debates, and I have avoided the temptation of making any statements about it. The events of the past few weeks could also not break my resolve, but President Muhammadu Buhari broke it.

ALSO READ: Eid-El-Fitr: Prominent Nigerians Berate Buhari For Issuing Audio Message In Hausa

As the Arewa youths issued quit notice to my southern brothers, and the Niger Delta militants called on my Hausa/Fulani siblings to leave the south, we all knew danger was in the offing.

I watched Acting President Yemi Osinbajo with admiration and pity as he tried to reinforce the threads that hold the fabric of our nation together. From meeting with regional elders, to canvassing support from governors, to the writing and delivery of inspirational speeches.

At the height of it all, the professor of law said we all must build a Nigeria “where the state knows every Nigerian by name and can find and locate each one of us, a Nigeria where the Ibo or Ijaw man can live peacefully in Sokoto, and the Fulani man can live peacefully in the Niger Delta”. The vice-president admitted that this Nigeria will be built on compromise.

He said “but building is an act of the human will.  It is a practical, routine, sometimes dirty, sometimes frustrating enterprise”. This enterprise was made more frustrating for Osinbajo, when his principal, via Shaaban Sharada, the president’s special assistant on broadcast media, sent a voice note to BBC and many local radio stations wishing a nation of over 500 languages, happy celebrations in Hausa.

“I am immensely grateful to God for his mercy in guiding us successfully to conclude another Ramadan fast. My greetings to all Nigerian Muslims and our brother Christians on the occasion of Eid-el-Fitr,” the president was interpreted to have said

“May the lessons of Ramadan namely; piety, self-denial, prayers and generosity to the poor and needy be with us for all time.

“I, again, appeal to all Nigerians to avoid reckless statements or actions against our fellow countrymen. We should all resolve to live in peace and unity in our great country, which is the envy of many less endowed nations.”

This message to Nigerians would have been apt if delivered in English language. Though addressing the nation, the Hausa delivery says it loudly, that the constituency who gave the president the famous “97 percent of their votes” are favoured in the scheme of things.

For a president who had been mum for over 45 days, and did not as much as send a statement to Nigerians on the May 29, 2017 democracy day, there was no need sending an Eid message in the first place. Perhaps Buhari’s handlers were out to dislodge all rumours concerning the critical state of the president’s health. Maybe they only sought to prove to Nigerians that the president has no hearing and speaking impairment and memory loss, as being reported in some quarters.

But this tactic failed. Today, Nigerians are more convinced than ever before that the king is not well. They are also convinced that when push comes to shove, and any of the agitating groups make good its promises, the president has taken a side. It is for him to prove otherwise.

Dear President Buhari, you may not mean it, but your voice note to us, has reinforced the resolve of the Hausa that Nigeria belongs to them, more than it belongs to the rest of us. It backs the position of Arewa Youths that other ethnic groups, especially the Igbo, are less relevant in this Nigeria. It is in itself a mental quit notice of sort.

As president sir, the next time you want to send us a message, you may want to take the Rotarian four way test: “Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will it build goodwill and better friendships? Will it be beneficial to all concerned?”

If no sir, silence might be a better message. God bless the president!

Reach Tijani across major social media platforms @OluwamayowaTJ

This article was written by Mayowa Tijani and was first published on TheCable. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

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#NMCLagos2017: New Media Conference Holds First School Debate In Lagos (Photos)

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To kick off activities for the annual digital conference, the New Media Conference hosted a school debate at the Children International School in Lekki, Lagos on Thursday, 22nd of June 2017.

The debate, which focused on the subject, ‘Social Media and the Classroom; Does Social Media Enrich Education’ was discussed between CIS Lekki, going head to head with Dowen College with the aim of understanding their views on how the digital space is perceived by the youth.

The panel of judges included Brand Strategist/Creative Director – Octo Consult Limited, Jumoke Awe; the Founder – Pearl Africa Foundation, Abisoye Ajayi and the CEO, NudeXP, Laolu Ogundeji.

The debate, which was powered by New Media Conference, Olorisupergal and sponsored by The Octagon Group, saw CIS Lagos, declared winners of the debate after an insightful conversation between both schools. Following a successful maiden edition in 2015, conversations deepened in 2016.

Past speakers include Taiwo Kola-Ogunlade (Google Nigeria), Subomi Plumptre (Alder Consulting), Ameyaw Debrah (Top Blogger, Ghana), Lola Masha (Country Manager OLX Nigeria), Jumoke Okikiolu (Samsung West Africa Regional Manager), Remi Ogunkoya (Red Media Africa), Aibee Abidoye (Chocolate City Group) amongst many others.

The New Media Conference (NMC) is an annual gathering of key stakeholders put together by Founder and CEO, Olorisupergal.com, Oluwatosin Ajibade.

It is aimed at the gathering of key stakeholders aimed at improving marketing and advertising standards in Africa’s online/digital media space.

It also attracts over 750 participants yearly, including new media practitioners, corporate brands, and digital media agencies. Others include standards organizations, government agencies and policy makers.

The next edition of the New Media Conference Lagos is slated to hold on Thursday, 27th July 2017 at Four Points by Sheraton, Victoria Island, Lagos.

More details about the conference can be read here www.newmediaconference.net.

Follow this year’s conversation on social media #NMCLagos2017

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Budget 2017: Fashola Lambasts Lawmakers, Says “You’ve Stark, Worrisome Knowledge”

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The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, has slammed the members of the National Assembly, as he argued that the lawmakers had “stark and worrisome knowledge” about the budget of his ministry before altering several of its allocations in the 2017 Appropriation Act.

Fashola, a former governor of Lagos state, also expressed deep concern over the recourse of the National Assembly’s spokespersons to name calling over his observations on the 2017 Budget.

In a Press Release signed by his Special Adviser on Media, Hakeem Bello, the minister said he was worried that the National Assembly spokespersons failed to address the fundamental points about development-hindering whimsical cuts in the allocations to several vital projects under the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing as well as other ministries.

The minister had, in a recent interview while acknowledging that legislators could contribute to budget making, disagreed with the practice where the legislative arm of government unilaterally alters the budget after putting members of the Executive through Budget Defence Sessions and Committee Hearings to the extent that some of the projects proposed would have become materially altered.

However, the Senate and House of Representatives disputed the minister’s claims and accused him of spreading half-truths.

Both the spokespersons of the Senate and the House of Representatives accused the minister of spreading “Half-Truths” and making “Fallacious “ statements because he (Fashola) should have known that they only interfered with projects that had concession agreements and private sector funding components. They also accused the minister of wanting to hold on to such projects in order that he may continue to award contracts.

However, while dismissing the allegations in the course of an official trip outside the country, Mr. Fashola said it was sad that the lawmakers would resort to name calling even without understanding the facts of what they were getting into.

In the case of the Second Niger Bridge where one of the spokespersons alleged that the provision in 2016 budget was not spent and had to be returned, Fashola said that this displays very stark and worrisome gaps in knowledge of the spokesperson about the budget process he was addressing.

Fashola said the focus on contracts by the spokesperson of the house of representatives is probably a “Freudian slip that reveals his mindset”.

His words: “Budget is not cash, it is an approval of estimates of expenditure to be financed by cash from the ministry of finance.”

“The ministry of finance has not yet released any cash for the second Niger bridge, so no money was returned.

“Three phases of early works of piling and foundation were approved and financed by the previous government in the hope that a concession will finally be issued, which has not happened because concessionaires have not been able to raise finance.

“The continuation of early works IV could not start in May 2016 when the budget was passed because of high water level in the River Niger in the rainy season.

“The contract was only approved by the federal executive council in the first quarter of 2017 and the contractor is awaiting payment.”

The minister further faulted the argument of the spokesman of the senate who accused him of spreading half-truth.

“In any event, allegations of half-truth is only a flawed response to the constitutional and developmental issues that have plagued Nigeria from 1999 about how to budget for the critical infrastructure in Nigeria,” Fashola said.

“It shows the conflict between the executive that wants to build big federal highways; bridges; power plants; rail; and dams on one hand and parliament that wants to do small things like boreholes, health centres, street lights and supplying grinding machines.

“As long as budgets planned to deliver life-changing infrastructure are cut into small pieces, Nigeria will continue to have small projects that are not life-changing, and big projects that have not been completed in 17 years.

“If a project would cost N15 billion and the contractor gets only a fraction of that, then things won’t move. Success should be defined by how many projects an administration is able to complete or set on the path of irreversible completion and not how many poorly funded contracts are awarded.

“There is no fallacy or half-truth in the allegation that the budgets were reduced. The spokespersons admitted this much and now sought to rationalise it by a concession or financing arrangement that has failed to build the road since 2006. The biggest momentum seen on the road was in 2016.”

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Power Sector: Nigeria Seeks $5bn Loan From World Bank

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There are strong indications that the Federal Government is seeking a loan of $5bn from the World Bank Group to boost power availability in Nigeria.

According to The Punch Newspaper, the Federal Government was actually seeking a loan of $5bn to be channelled into the power sector in order to boost electricity availability in the country.

In April, the World Bank had said that a powerful delegation from Nigeria was in Washington DC to discuss assistance for the nation’s power sector, but did not disclose the details of the talks.

Those present at the meeting in Washington DC on April 25, 2017 were the Minister for Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola; Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun; Chairman, Senate Committee on Power, Steel and Metallurgy, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe; and Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Power, Mr. Dan Asuquo.

After the meeting, the World Bank Group had said that it would deploy a full range of instruments to mobilise investments to resolve Nigeria’s energy crisis.

The Director of Operations at the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, an arm of the World Bank Group, Sarvesh Suri, said a full range of instruments would be deployed to help the government mobilise investments directly from the private sector and through private sector guarantees.

According to the Debt Management Office, out of Nigeria’s external debt of $13.81bn as of March 31, 2017, the World Bank Group had a portfolio of $6.93bn.

Literally, it means that the World Bank holds more than 50 per cent of the country’s external debt portfolio.

Should the loan being sought by the Federal Government be approved, Nigeria’s indebtedness to the World Bank would rise to about $11bn, excluding other smaller loans that have been approved after the March 31 accounting date.

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