His name is Efe Obada, and a scant five years ago he’d never played North American Football yet in January 2019 the Carolina Panthers signed him as one of their Defensive Ends in the NFL.
Born in Nigeria on 30 April 1992, aged eight years of age Efe’s family moved to the Netherlands where at the age of 10 he and his sister were separated from their mother and trafficked into England. Abandoned upon arrival, it left the two children homeless on the streets of Hackney in the east of London. Initially sleeping rough, they first found shelter in an office block, then were taken in by a friend of the family, before living with strangers, home hopping between 10 separate foster homes.
He had a tough life growing up, enough so to see three of his friends murdered. Eventually, through a contact of their mother, he managed to find stable employment, working shifts as a security guard at the Welwyn Garden City branch of Grace Foods.
At this stage, Obada for the first time in his life started playing North American Football for the London Warriors in his spare time. At the time, Aden Durde, defensive coordinator for the London Warriors, had spent a summer working as an intern coach with the Dallas Cowboys during 2014.
Based on Durden’s recommendation, Obada received an invitation to join the team for a workout session just days prior to their upcoming clash with the Jacksonville Jaguars in London. Despite his rawness and lack of experience, the Dallas Cowboys signed him on 1 April 2015 as an undrafted free agent.
In rookie minicamp, they waived him on 5 September, but on 23 September they signed him up to the practice squad of the Dallas Cowboys. On 9 March 2016 the Kansas City Chiefs signed him and on 28 July 2016, the Atlanta Falcons signed him. Finally, on 25 May 2017, Obada signed up with the Carolina Panthers via the International Player Pathway program instituted by the new NFL which guaranteed him a team position.
He made an explosive debut for the Panthers which was good enough to see his extraordinary gameplay recognized by him receiving the game ball in the locker room after the match. Leading international online sportsbooks such as William Hill as well as punters who follow and regularly wager on the NFL’s action-packed matches quickly recognized his potential.
Part of the conditions of the International Player Pathway program made him ineligible for promotion into the 53-man roster during regular season play. However, after making a strong show during the preseason, Obada distinguished himself by becoming the first player from the program to successfully enter a 53-man roster. In his third week, Obada played his first regular season match against Cincinnati’s Bengals, making one intersection and one sack.
Obada’s performance during his first match not only saw him receive the game ball it also had him named NFC Defensive Player of the week, he went on to finish his season having made eight combined tackles with two sacks
The Tide News Cheltenham Festival Guide
The Cheltenham Festival is almost upon us. It’s the annual horse racing pilgrimage where tens of thousands of punters gamble millions at National Hunt racing’s ‘Holy Grail’.
Over the course of four days the bookmakers and punters will compete in what has become a ‘them vs us’ battle, namely the cream of the Irish horse racing crop in a heads-up battle with the home defence.
Of course there is a dark cloud looming over Cheltenham 2020 with the very real threat of the Festival being cancelled due to the spread of coronavirus. Back in 2001 the Festival was cancelled due to an outbreak of foot and mouth disease and bookmakers are already speculating on this year’s event going ahead. Right now it is considered around 9/4 (approximately 30 percent chance) on the Betfair betting exchange that Cheltenham will be cancelled this year.
Let’s presume things proceed as planned, just how is the best way to experience the buzz of the Festival in 2020? For starters if the prospect of winning big for limited outlay excites you, you can enjoy Cheltenham free bets at freebets.co.uk which means you are guaranteed a lot of fun for nothing. But where will the big winners come from? This is how we see it:
Paisley Park won last year’s Stayers Hurdle and has done nothing wrong this term. Seeking to join a long list of back-to-back winners this winner of his last seven starts looks the banker bet of the 2020 Festival and the one to stick into your doubles and treble bets.
At 6/1 Abacadabras is an each-way price because you will more than get your stakes back if he makes the frame but fails to win.
Owned by Michael O’Leary who runs Ryanair, Abacadabras has only been beaten once in his last four starts and in taking the Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown looks capable of huge run in the Supreme Novice Hurdle, the opening race on the opening day of the Festival.
Big Race Winner
This year’s showpiece Cheltenham Gold Cup looks massively competitive. The home trained Santini is the bookies favourite.
Last year’s Gold Cup winner, Al Boum Photo, is well fancied in the betting odds at 7/2. But it’s the Irish trained Kemboy that makes the most appeal. He may have been slightly disappointing so far this year but he accounted for Al Boum Photo last May at Punchestown and might just be a ‘spring horse’ who shows his best form once the cold wet winter has passed.
Some curiosities about football and bets
Football is one of the most practiced sports all over the world, so much so that when checking the list of the most important teams per league, issued by the International Federation of FootballAssociation(FIFA), there are teams from Europe and the Americas.
In the case of the classification by country teams, the list ranks countries like: Belgium, France, Brazil, England, Uruguay, Croatia, Portugal, Spain, Argentina and Colombia. When an international event takes place or league games are played, the analysis per game begins days before, as well as forecasts and bets.
Well, yes. Football betting has existed practically since the beginning of that sport and has evolved over time, going from being informal to being done online through certified companies.
Today, there are countless teams and leagues, and every day a large number of national and international football games are played on which you can place your bets.
Placing a bet is not a process that can be taken lightly, unless you don’t mind risking a certain amount of money. Many people take it as a hobby, but others see it as an opportunity to make some extra money.
In any case, to place a bet on football, you must follow three key steps: the first one, bet only in competitions you know. For example, if you know about the Spanish League you should place your bets there and not in Copa Libertador games. Before doing so, you should know better the teams that participate, as well as their statistical data.
The second step is to open an account with an online sportsbook. There is a great variety of options, but the important thing is that you check their security, reliability, odds offered, as well as the range of bets they allow.
One of the bookmakers that offers a good welcome bonus, various alternative markets, more odds on football bets, live, direct and special bets as well as high odds, is Bet9ja, a Nigerian bookmaker.
The last step is to get to know the different football betting markets. The most common bets are: 1×2, bet on winner, first goal scorer, as well as live bets, which are made when the game is in progress.
Other types of odds on Bet9ja include: winner (predicting the winner of the tournament), relegation (team that will be relegated to another division), no winner, top 2 to 5, top by club, HH team, top scorer, top scorer of the team, direct betting, tricast, exact group points, winner and top scorer, etc.
Football betting is one of the favorites among users given the breadth of the market it offers. Just choose the bookmaker that offers the best conditions in your bet and apply the right strategies to get it right.
Who Is Nigeria’s Best Soccer Player of the Decade?
2020 marks the end of what many soccer fans would call the golden age of Nigerian football. Austin Okocha, KanuNwankwo, Daniel Amokachi, Finidi George, and Taribo West were some of the players that highlighted this golden generation while excelling their talents. As such, the legacy of that decade will be long remembered in club careers and national team moments.
While the 2010s led to the emergence of a new football era, the likes of Obafemi Martins, Mikel Obi, and OsazeOdemwingie were already established before the beginning of the decade. However, other players emerged as the decade wore on, leaving indelible marks on the game. We’ve deiced to close the decade with a shortlist of a few best players in different positions on the field over the last decade.
Among these players we can find those who made the secade for the ones who bet on soccer online at one point or the other, we’ve selected them based on impact on their clubs and national teams, titles won and consistency.
Goalkeeper- Vincent Enyeama
Considered as one of the greatest goalkeepers in Africa, Enyeama is undoubtedly the Nigerian goalkeeper of the decade. Enyeamastarted the decade with a league win while with the Israeli side, Hapoel Tel Aviv, before moving to Lille.
After moving to France, Vincent didn’t have a great start, but he soon sprung back to the first-choice goalkeeper after moving back to Israel on load during the 2012/2013 season. The following season, he recorded 11 straight clean sheets for his League 11 games, almost breaking the league record.
Right Back – Efe Ambrose
For the better part of the decade, Ambrose has been the most consistent player in Nigerian football. While he also played the central defender position, he was the ultimate Super Eagles right-back for several years. The defender moved to Scotland in 2012, winning five league titles consecutively.
While playing for Celtic, he took four consecutive league titles, playing over 20 games in every season. The defender was also key to the Super Eagles win of their only trophy of the decade, playing six out of their seven AFCON 2013 games.
Defensive Midfield – Wilfred Ndidi
Since moving to Leicester in January last year, Wilfred Ndidi has increased his strength significantly to become one of the best Premier League midfielders. While with the foxes, Ndidi had an impressive consistency, and he improved significantly to become a world-class Nigerian Player. Ndidi has also been a reliable player for the Super Eagles during the last three years, with the 2019 AFCON under his belt.
Best Overall – John Mikel Obi
While playing at the highest level in European Soccer, Mikel Obi is arguably the most consistent Nigerian player of the decade. Mikel had won every trophy in his club career, succeeding effortlessly at Chelsea in a time when Nigerian football wasn’t enough for the international audience. Even better, Obi played an important role in helping the Blues win the FA Cup, Europa League, Premier League and Champions League.
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