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Dream Team V Arrives Morocco For CAF U-23

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Nigeria’s national under-23 men football side have begun its acclimatisation and final phase of preparation for the inaugural CAF U-23 Championship in Morocco, a team official said.

Team Media Officer, Arafat Aliu, told Tidesports in a telephone interview on arrival in Casablanca, Morocco that the team had settled down.

The Tidesports gathered that the team is scheduled to take part in the eight-team competition which is the final round of African qualifiers for the 2012 Olympic Games’ men football event.

“We arrived in Casablanca, Morocco by 10.30 am local time last Saturday for the acclimatisation part of the team’s preparation for the championship, and I can say we are getting by.

“The team has already got a feel of what the weather will look like during its stay here in the next three weeks in Morocco.

“Upon arrival at the airport here in Casablanca, the maximum temperature was put at 16 degrees Celsius with heavy showers,’’ Aliu said.

He said the team, otherwise called “Dream Team V’’, later had a 25-minute drive from the airport to its Hotel Anfa Port camp where it would stay in the next five days.

Tidesports reports that the team had departed Lagos at 7.25 a.m on Saturday with a 29-man contingent comprising 18 players and 11 officials.

Aliu said only one player from the five-man list of standby players, Atu Irumekhai, travelled with the team while the rest four were asked to stay back.

“They are to remain in Nigeria until it is deemed necessary that they should join the team in Morocco,’’ he said.

The team spokesman however said four foreign-based players from the original 21-man list are being expected to join the team in Morocco.

“These are Obiora Nwankwo, Babatunde Michael, Stephen Worgu and Nosa Igiebor, and they are joining from their respective clubs outside Nigeria,’’ he said.

The Dream Team V would begin its campaign in the championship next Saturday against host nation Morocco.

The Group A match is billed to kick off at 1730 hours GMT, one hour ahead of Nigerian time.

Nigeria will also play against Senegal and Algeria in Group A matches at the championship billed for November 26 to December 10.

The top three teams at the competition will qualify automatically for the London Olympics scheduled for July 27 to August 12, 2012.

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CAF Mulls Super League Idea

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The Confederation of African Football [CAF] is discussing the idea of introducing an African Super League, a continental competition which would likely replace the current CAF Champions League and hopefully boost revenue for the organising body.
The revelation was made as CAF President Patrice Motsepe issued a statement outlining the changes and reforms the new leadership is making to ensure African football is globally competitive and self-sustaining.
The idea has taken shape even despite the disastrous European Super League [ESL] proposal earlier this year, which caused major controversy before being banned after most founding member clubs bowed to fan pressure and pulled out.
“ExCo [the CAF executive committee] may have to discuss and consider new CAF competitions which may generate additional funding or income for CAF, its member associations and bodies and also contribute to African football becoming globally competitive and self-sustaining,” Motsepe was quoted as saying by Tidesports source.
“In this regard, we are assessing and [are] in preliminary discussions to start an inclusive and broadly supported and beneficial CAF African Super League. We have been following the attempts by some top European clubs to form a Euro Super League and will learn from their experience and pitfalls.”
CAF is looking to boost income after recent forensic auditing revealed that the organisation has been beset by financial irregularities.

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NPFL: Rivers United’s Coach Praises Players

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The Chief Coach of Rivers United FC of Port Harcourt, Ndubuisi Nduka, has praised his players after a 1-0 win over Katsina United FC in the match day 28 of the Nigeria Professional Football League ( NPFL) in Port Harcourt.
He stated that his boys (players) gave all their best  to ensure they secured the maximum three points for the team, and described the encounter as very tough. 
Nduka, said this on Sunday, during a post match interview with sports journalists, after the Pride of Rivers, defeated their opponents  1-0, at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port Harcourt.
According to him, what made the match more difficult for his players was that they failed to utilise goal opportunities they created in the first half of the game.
The only goal of the game came in the 77th minute by home boy, Malachi Ohawume, who made his goals four for this league season.
“It was a tough game; I think our boys gave it all.
What made it more difficult for us was the chances we lost especially in the first half, “ Nduka said.
He explained that the second round of the league is always difficult because every team is fighting to be at top and some are fighting not to be relegated.
“At this point and time of the league, the second round, we are stretching to the finishing point.
“It is always difficult and if you remember the position of Katsina United, they are not safe so they are looking for where to pick points, so I gave kudos to my boys as they secured three points for us, “ he stated. 
Rivers United is now 4th on the log after 28 matches with 48 points.

By:  Kiadum Edookor

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Hockey Championship: Team Rivers’ Performance Excites Coach

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The Head coach of Team Rivers State, (female) hockey, Comfort Nya, has commended her players after they defeated team Edo, 3-1 in the ongoing, 2021 Mabisel National Hockey Championship (MNHC) in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. 
She, described the match as one of the toughest games they have played, saying that the calibre of players she saw in the team Edo lineup was intimidating.
Nya said this on Monday in her post match interview with sports journalists, after their first victory in the championship, at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Sports in Port Harcourt. 
According to her, their first game in the championship was difficult because of the heavy downpour, adding that they could not play well but today they are awesome.
“It was a tough one, honestly speaking I would not tell lies, and the players I saw in team Edo lineup are old and good players and my girls are just upcoming.
“I was thinking of draw or let them just play but with this result I am so happy with their performance, “Nya said. 
The coach further explained that their next outing will be against team Kaduna, they are going to do more better.
“Our first game was disturbed by heavy rainfall, they could not play well but today they have performed well.
“In our next game against team Kaduna, we are going to do better,” She stated..

By: Kiadum Edookor

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