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S’Africa’s Amajita Dominates Flying Eagles … 8-Nation Tourney

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South Africa’s Under-20 team, Amajita  beat Nigeria’s Flying Eagles 1-0 to bundle them out of the  8 Nation Tournament match at Cape Town Stadium early in the week.

It was a game dominated by South Africa, who missed a lot of opportunities, until Jerry Mxabo put one away at the end.

The early stages of the game were tight with neither team able to gain the upper-hand. Nigeria looked to expose South Africa with aerial balls from out wide, but the host nation did well to get numbers around their opponents.

There was a half chance for Aminu Umar after 21 minutes, but he dragged a low drive just wide.

At the other end, Amajita’s build-up play showed promise, but they lacked the killer ball needed to unlock the Nigeria defence.

It was the Flying Eagles who had the better chances on goal – Uche Agbo not too far off with a glanced header and then the same player setting up Christian Obinna, but with only the keeper to beat Obinna blazed his effort over the bar.

Into stoppage time and Amajita had half a chance, but Jerry Mxabo was unable to get enough on a back post header.

The South African side came out firing on all cylinders after the break, causing the Nigerian defence all kinds of problems with some incisive play around the box.

This time, however, it was the final touch that was missing as Mxabo shot over the bar, while Mbongeni Gumede sent a header marginally wide.

Mxabo then had his header tipped around the post by Chukwunenye Okanki, before Snethemba Ngidi had a goal disallowed for what seemed to be a handball call.

There was a rare chance for the Flying Eagles when Simon Innocent sent a 25-yard effort just off target.

It was Amajita who remained the bigger threat on attack as they continued to attack with pace and determination.

The reward came in the 85th minute, as Mxabo finally got his finishing right, volleying home after Kgosietsile Ntlhe’s excellent back-post ball.

The Flying Eagles exited the tournament without a point after losing to Ghana and Argentina, previously.

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Aiteo Cup: Diri Hails Bayelsa Finalists

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Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has lauded the feat of the state-owned football teams who reached the finals in the male and female categories of the 2021 Aiteo Cup.
Diri, while congratulating Bayelsa United and Bayelsa Queens for their outstanding performances, praised their indomitable spirit and resilience in surmounting the odds to qualify for the last stage of Nigeria’s oldest football competition.
Bayelsa United, who plays in the second tier Nigerian National League, on Friday defeated Premier League neighbours Rivers United 1-0 in the semi-finals, while Bayelsa Queens crushed perennial rivals Rivers Angels 5-0 to reach the women’s final.
The Governor, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Alabrah, on Saturday, described Bayelsa United as “giant killers” for defeating Premier League sides Enugu Rangers, Lobi Stars and Rivers United on their way to the final.
“The excellent run of Bayelsa United and Bayelsa Queens in this year’s Aiteo Cup is very heartwarming. Both teams reaching the finals is no mean feat. I congratulate them for making the state proud and setting a record of teams from the state playing in the finals of the male and female categories of the same competition for the first time,” Diri stated.
“By their outstanding performance, Bayelsa United and Bayelsa Queens have shown that the sporting revolution of our Prosperity Administration, which resulted in Bayelsa placing third in the last National Sports Festival in Edo State for the first time, is on course. I therefore urge them to complete their excellent run in the competition by bringing home the trophies.

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D’Tigress To Play Mozambique In Afrobasket

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Nigeria’s senior basketball team, D’Tigress, have been drawn to face Mozambique and a yet to qualify team in Group B of the 2021 Women’s Afrobasket, which holds from September 17 to 27 in Yaounde, Cameroon.
The draw was held in Yaounde last Saturday.
D’Tigress will be hoping to retain the title they won two years ago in Senegal, where they defeated the hosts in the final. A win in Cameroon will mean they have won the last three editions of the tournament.
The Nigerians will know their final group opponent when the FIBA Zone 6 qualifiers take place from August 16 to 22.
In Group A, hosts Cameroon will face Cape Verde and Kenya, while Senegal, the most successful team in the competition’s history with 11 first-place finishes, will slug it out with Egypt and Gabon in Group C.
Mali, Ivory Coast, and a team to be decided via wild card will fight for a slot in the next round in Group D.

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Ebonyi Football Fans Celebrate Nwankwo Kanu At 45

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Football fans in Ebonyi State yesterday, celebrated the birthday of formerNigerian international and Arsenal legend, Nwankwo Kanu.
The former Super Eagles skipper turned 45 yesterday.
Tidespoets source gathered  that the 1993 FIFA U-17 world cup winner, fondly called “Papillo’’ by his fans had 86 caps for Nigeria.
The former Iwuanyanwu Nationale Football Club of Owerri’s talisman scored 13 goals for Nigeria in an enviable career that spanned from 1994 to 2010.
Kanu is a recipient of the Member of the Order of the Niger (MON), an Olympic Games football gold medalist and had illustrious club careers with Ajax Amsterdam of Holland, Arsenal and West Bromwich Albion of England.
Defunct Ebonyi Angels FC of Abakaliki Defender, James Onele, said that Kanu thrilled soccer fans across the world with sublime skills and trademark passes.
“Kanu won two African Footballer of the Year awards, an AFCON silver medal, four AFCON bronze medals among other honours.
“He was the first Nigerian, alongside Finidi George to win the prestigious UEFA champions league trophy with Ajax in 1995,” said Onele.
An Arsenal FC supporter, Ejike Okoro, said the club’s fans were proud of Kanu’s achievements during his time with the English Premier League side.
“Kanu played 197 times for Arsenal, scoring 44 goals and was part of the club’s invincible team that did not lose any match in the 2003-04 EPL season.
“He was instrumental in endearing Arsenal to millions of Nigerian soccer fans, despite later dropping to lowly-rated clubs such as Portsmouth and West Bromwich Albion,” Okoro said.
A banker and football enthusiast, Chief Barry Ogoh, told active footballers to emulate Papillo in investing adequately for the ‘rainy day’.
“Kanu, Augustine J.J. Okocha, among other ex-internationals are still financially stable as many ex-internationals have become bankrupt.

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