FIFA fires ex-Blatter deputy Valcke, Hawit in US court

FIFA fires ex-Blatter deputy Valcke, Hawit in US court

FIFA on Wednesday said it had fired Sepp Blatter’s former right-hand man, Jerome Valcke, the latest casualty in a multi-layered scandal that has brought down the most powerful figures in world football. Valcke was FIFA’s general secretary for nearly a decade, working alongside the body’s then-president Blatter, who has been banned for eight years over an ethics violation. Valcke, 55, was himself facing a possible nine-year ban sought by FIFA investigators over his alleged role…

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How Ronaldo statue was Messi-ed

How Ronaldo statue was Messi-ed

Cristiano Ronaldo’s statue in Funchal, capital of his home island of Madeira, has been tagged with the name and shirt number of arch-rival Lionel Messi, according to local press reports. The graffiti was put on the statue overnight on Tuesday, just hours after Barcelona’s Argentine star Messi claimed a fifth world player of the year award, beating out Real Madrid’s Portuguese striker and three-time Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo in the process. The name Messi and the…

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Serena “ready to go” for Melbourne

Serena “ready to go” for Melbourne

Defending champion Serena Williams insists she is fighting fit in her bid for a seventh Australian Open crown despite an injury scare and lack of match practice. The world number one has barely played since the US Open in September, when Roberta Vinci shattered her dream of a calendar-year Grand Slam in a heart-breaking semi-final defeat. Williams attempted a comeback at this month’s Hopman Cup mixed-team tournament in Perth but retired with soreness in her…

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Wenger vexed as Arsenal squander title momentum

Wenger vexed as Arsenal squander title momentum

Arsene Wenger couldn’t conceal his frustration after Arsenal’s dramatic 3-3 draw at Liverpool saw the Gunners waste an opportunity to consolidate their position at the top of the Premier League. But Wenger claimed Wednesday’s thrilling contest at Anfield underlined his team’s title credentials as he challenged his players to use their disappointment as a motivation for a first English crown in 12 years. After chief rivals Manchester City were held at home to Everton, the…

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CHAN 2016: Super Eagles, others aim high

CHAN 2016: Super Eagles, others aim high

Lagos – Nigeria’s home-based Super Eagles and 15 other countries’ teams will clash as the Championship of African Nations (CHAN) is scheduled to begin on Jan. 16 in Rwanda. The tournament which will run from Jan. 16 to Feb. 7 is organised by the African Football Confederation (CAF), exclusively for African players who ply trade in their respective national leagues. Rwanda, Gabon, Morocco, Cote d’ Ivoire, DR Congo, Angola, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Tunisia, Nigeria, Niger, Guinea,…

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Arsenal sign Egyptian midfielder Elneny

Arsenal sign Egyptian midfielder Elneny

Arsenal have signed Egyptian midfielder Mohamed Elneny from Swiss side Basel for an undisclosed fee, the Premier League leaders announced on Thursday. “Arsenal have signed Mohamed Elneny from FC Basel,” the club announced on their website. “Everyone at Arsenal would like to welcome Mohamed to the club.” The club disclosed neither the length of Elneny’s contract nor the transfer fee, but British media reports suggested they had paid around £5 million ($7.2 million, 6.6 million…

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Dalung, Pinnick urge Eagles to win trophy, as Baruwa warns team

Dalung, Pinnick urge Eagles to win trophy, as Baruwa warns team

The Minister of Sports, Solomon Dalung, on Monday urged the home-based Super Eagles to win the Championship of African Nations (CHAN) trophy in Rwanda. The championship, which begins on Saturday, was scheduled to run till February 7. Dalung, who gave the advice in an interview with NAN in Abuja, also urged the team to sustain the tempo the country’s national teams had built at international competitions in recent time. “We expect them to maintain the…

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January Transfer Window: Arsenal may splash N4.3bn on Mikel

January Transfer Window: Arsenal may splash N4.3bn on Mikel

Arsenal Manager, Arsene Wenger is dream big within the on-going January transfer window with his sights set on Nigerian midfielder John Mikel Obi for whom he is ready to cough out £12m (about N4.3bn) to bring the midfielder to the Emirates stadium. It was gathered on caughtoffside,com that Mikel‘s recent renaissance at Chelsea has ignited Arsene Wenger’s interest in the player, with the Arsenal manager understood to be considering a move for him. Inspired by…

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2016 continental campaign: LMC moves to put Enyimba, others in good shape

2016 continental campaign: LMC moves to put Enyimba, others in good shape

The League Management Company (LMC) on Tuesday announced a comprehensive calendar of activities for the 2015/16 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) season, providing two rounds of Super 4 tournaments which would take place before the season proper kicks off February 21. The two Super 4 tournaments billed for Kaduna and Uyo are ostensibly meant to prepare Nigerian teams playing in the continent. The quartet of Enyimba, Warri Wolves, Nasarawa United and Akwa United would be…

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UCL exit: Van Gaal insists ‘United better than last year’

UCL exit: Van Gaal insists ‘United better than last year’

Louis van Gaal says he is unable to defend himself following Manchester United’s Champions League exit, but he insists the Red Devils are improving under his tenure. United crashed out with a 3-2 defeat at Wolfsburg, who made club history by reaching the knock-out stages as Group B winners. PSV Eindhoven’s 2-1 win at home to CSKA Moscow allowed the Dutch to claim second place at Manchester’s expense as third-placed United now drop into the…

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