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Wilfried Zaha remains committed to Crystal Palace

Ivory Coast international Wilfried Zaha has expressed his commitment towards Crystal Palace now that the Premier League transfer window has concluded. Earlier this summer, the attacker had snubbed a new contract in order to push for a big-club move elsewhere and this saw him linked with the likes of Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur.

However, neither side really made an approach for the former Manchester United man while Zaha has now stressed that he is focused on the job at hand with the Eagles. Speaking after the club’s opening day win over Fulham, he said: “It makes no difference to me, because I had my head down anyway. Not all that stuff was going to affect me or how the team were playing. Whatever happens, happens. But I’m all Palace, and you can see on the pitch that all I think about is the team doing well.”
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AFRICAN FOOTBALLERS CONTINUE TO DAZZLE IN GERMANY

For a long time African football stars have been doing exceptionally well in the German football top flight. This run goes as far back as the days of Anthony Baffoe, Anthony Yeboah, Austin JayJay Okocha to more recent time of Pierre Emerik Aubameyang and Naby Keita.

Of all these names, one that would likely not be forgotten in the annals of history would be former Super Eagles skipper Jay Jay Okocha. He dazzled in the German Bundesliga before making a name for himself in the Premier League especially whilst in Bolton Wanderers.
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JEAN: ROHR HAS BETTER KNOWLEDGE OF AFRICAN FOOTBALL

A top Cameroonian sports journalist Patrick Jean has condemned the lackluster performance of the national team in the World Cup qualifier clash against their Nigerian counterparts.


The African champions lost heavily 4-0 against the West African side as both sides raced to make the 2018 World Cup.

Jean was quoted to have boasted that the team would earn a point from the fixture in Uyo ahead of the game but the team lost scandalously. The journalist was pissed at the quality of display from the Cameroonian camp, even at all they lost the game.

“From the game, it’s clear to see the team that wanted it the most won it. The quality was very obvious. It was like watching men against school boys. No doubt Nigeria taught us some vital lessons,” he said.

The angry Jean added that the Nigerian national team coach Gernot Rohr proved to be superior to his counterpart.

“….with all due respect to Hugo Broos [the Cameroon coach], Gernot Rohr is a superior coach with better knowledge of African football,” he said. (more…)

ARE AFRICAN FOOTBALL STARS MORE LIKELY TO DIE ON THE PITCH?

There is this ugly trend that is creeping on African footballers. It is the growing number of on-field casualties.


Most of the African players that have died on the pitch were reportedly due to cardiac arrest. Late Nigerian star Samuel Okwaraji was the first casualty that drew concern from the football community. He died in the World Cup qualifier in Lagos in 1989.

His enlarged heart and high blood pressure was reported as cause of death, and he was only 25 years old. After a long while, the death of Cameroon star Marc-Vivier Foe at the semi-final of the Confederations Cup in 2003 reopened this debate.

Others like Amir Angwe, Endurance Idahor, Hedi Berkhissa, Chaswe Nsofwa and Patrick Ekeng are enough reason for an official study to be opened to check the trend. An analysis in a BBC report show that African football stars make up nearly 40% of reported deaths in the last decade. (more…)

FIFA LIFTS MALI’S SUSPENSION

World football regulatory body FIFA has lifted the suspension of Mali Football Association (FEMAFOOT), according to the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

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FIFA banned them due to government interference in football – an issue the body takes very serious.

The Sports Minister of the African side Housseini Amion had dissolved the executive committee of FEMAFOOT. He then proceeded to appoint a provisional committee and gave them the mandate to run elections within a year.

FIFA suspended the body, asking that the board and management of FEMAFOOT be restored

“No team from Mali of any sort including clubs can take part in international competitions as of 17 March 2017 and until the suspension is lifted. This also means that neither FEMAFOOT nor any of its members or officials may benefit from any development programme, course or training from FIFA or the Confederation of African football,” a statement from FIFA had read. (more…)

ALGERIA CRASH OUT OF AFCON 2017

Algeria has crashed out of the ongoing African Cup of Nations tournament in Gabon after they played a 2-2 draw with Senegal in the final group clash.


The African side failed to win a single game in the tournament despite being branded one of the favourites to lift the title.

Leicester City striker Islam Slimani scored both goals during the game against Senegal – another favourite to win the title. Senegal equalized on both occasions that Slimani scored. Papakouly Diop and Moussa Sow ensured both sides shared the spoils. Slimani scored in the first ten minutes but Senegal levelled before the break. After the break, Slimani added another in the 52nd minute but the Senegalese side responded immediately in the 53rd minute through Sow. Slimani could have won the game and grabbed his hat trick but he went the effort wide. (more…)

Nigeria coach praises impact of John Obi Mikel against Algeria

Nigeria made it two wins out of two World Cup qualification after a 3-1 success over Algeria.


It was a victory largely masterminded by midfielder John obi Mikel. The Chelsea midfielder may be struggling for opportunities at club level, but he continues to remain as one of the key players for the national team. After having missed out on the 2017 African Cup of Nations, the national team are desperate to achieve qualification to the World Cup 2018 without any hiccups. After a close fought 2-1 win over Zambia in the opening group match, they have managed to beat former African Cup of Nations champions Algeria.

German coachGernot Rohr has been in charge of Nigeria from September 2016. He says that Mikel was an important catalyst in the victory. The 29-year-old played the full 90 minutes against Algeria. (more…)

Gernot Rohr recommends to Avoid Money Spending on Players that are on Vacations

Gernot Rohr does not think that the money should be wasted on those players who come to the national camp only to have a bit of a vacation and have nothing to do during a match apart from remaining seated on the bench.


In the view of Rohr, the second and the third choice players should be good enough to put pressure on the starters and the starters must know that they can only remain ahead of their understudies if they shine match after match.

Otherwise if the starters don’t have any challenge for their places, they will never be afraid of a sack and thus, they might drop their guard which might lead to a weak team effort.

Rohr, a consultant for Nigeria, was quoted saying, “I have noticed that the national duty is nothing more than a vacation trip for a few of the players. They are given the money for their services, but, do they even have to provide their services? I don’t think so.” (more…)

Kenya to host Africa Nations Championship

The CAF president IssaHiyatou has stated that it would be a good idea for Kenya to host the National Championship.

He believes that the country has the necessary skills and resources to host such a competition and that it would bring benefit to the nation.


IssaHiyatou said that he has discussed with the Kenyan authorities about the benefits of hosting the Africa Nations Championship on their soil. He stated that the Kenya youth would take advantage of the opportunity to display their talent before the world.

He said that the locals will also be given an opportunity to show their talents in the footballing world if ever Kenya accepts to host the competition. IssaHiyatou believes that the local economy will also come out as a winner.

Kenya’s deputy president Ruto said that the country is doing everything they can in order to be ready on time. He said that construction work is going on at all the different stadiums and that they are working hard to ensure that all infrastructures are ready for the tournament. (more…)