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Ex-International Canvasses Support For Eagles

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A former Nigeria interna
tional, Tijani Babangida, has urged the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and well meaning individuals to support Stephen Keshi and the Super Eagles ahead of the World Cup.
Babangida told newsmen in Abuja that by so doing, the team would be spurred to improve on what other African countries had done at the World Cup.
“We must avoid any pitfall. I read about the query they gave him (Keshi) in the newspapers.
“All that is unnecessary at this stage, such distractions, shouldn’t even be made public. It is not good at all.
“Keshi is someone I’ve known for a long time and I have no doubt that he will do the nation proud if the NFA can give him all the necessary support he needs.
“I have a good feeling Nigeria will do well at the World Cup,’’ he said.
The former winger endorsed the country’s quest for a credible performance at the FIFA World Cup in Brazil, adding that he was optimistic that Keshi was the right man for the job.
Babangida, who plied his trade with Ajax FC of Amsterdam, advised that Keshi should be allowed to pick the players of his choice against the backdrop of undue pressure on him.
“I will advise that we all allow Keshi to select whom he wants.
“If he feels he needs the experience of Osaze Odemwingie, or the sharpness of Ikechukwu Uche, that’s fine. If not, so be it.
“Win or lose, the buck stops at his table. Nigerians are very difficult to please.
“We are going to the World Cup as the current African champions. Surely that must count for something.
“I think we need to respect Keshi more and allow him do what he feels will be good for Nigeria,” he said.
Babangida, who was also part of the 1998 World Cup squad in France, said the Eagles should be wary of Iran, who might turn out to be the spoilers in the group.
“A lot of people are looking at Argentina and Bosnia-Herzegovina, while forgetting Iran as a potential threat.
“Argentina are familiar foes. Bosnia-Herzegovina we know a bit, but Iran being an unknown quantity can spring a surprise or two. It shouldn’t be against us.

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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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