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Friday, December 15, 2017

Eagles coach Rohr given break to celebrate Christmas with Madagascan wife, back in January

Gernot Rohr Madagascan wife

Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr has been officially permitted to miss the ongoing Nigeria Professional Football League Invitational tournament in Kano.

This was done to allow the German born coach celebrate the Christmas season with his Madagascan wife and family.

Media officer of the Super Eagles confirmed this latest outcome to 90minutesgoal.com when he hinted that Rohr has already joined his Madagascan wife for the festive season and will fly to Morocco to be with the CHAN Eagles in January.

"Rohr has been given a break to enjoy the Christmas season. He is already in Germany and will heading to Madagascar to spend the holiday with his wife and family".

"He will join us in Morocco for the African Nations Championship in January," Ibitoye told 90minutesgoal.com
The CHAN tournament will kickoff on January 13, 2018 and end on February 4, 2018.

The home based Super Eagles are using the ongoing Super six tournament in Kano to prepare for the CHAN tournament which Nigeria has never won.
CHAN 2018 is scheduled for Morocco from January 13 to February 4, 2018. The home-based Super Eagles is expected to leave for Morocco early in January to begin full preparations for tournament.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Kanu Nwankwo captains African legends to defeat against Kano Pillars, El Hadji Diouf in action

IDP Match vs Kano pillars

The African Legend team

Former Nigerian captain Kanu Nwankwo captained an African legend team that lost 2-1 to Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL side Kano Pillars in a charity match played at the Sani Abacha Stadium. Kano on Thursday 90minutesgoal.com reports.

Striker Akide Ibrahim scored a brace in the game for Kano Pillars, while former captain of Bafana Bafana of South Africa Aaron Mokoena scored the only goal for the Legend side in the game which was organized to help internally displaced persons.

Some of the ex stars that played for the Legend side were former Zimbabwe and Portsmouth forward Benjani Nwaruwari, Daniel Amokach, Tijani Babangida, Garba Lawal, Samson Siasia, Aaron Mokeana, former Senegal and Liverpool striker El Hadji Diouf, Ahmed Garba Yaro Yaro, Mutiu Adepoju, Manu Garba, Patrick Pascal, Waidi Akanni, Bassey Osegie, while Chinese based Brown Ideye played for the African Legends.

Former Arsenal attacker Kanu Nwankwo said he was happy that everything went as planned and expressed joy for being part of the game, while also praising the organizers of the charity match.

“It’s an opportunity for us to show support for the internally displaced persons and we are glad to be in Kano today.

“The organizers did a good job in organizing this high profile charity match and bringing all these stars here and I want to say a big kudos to them.”

You will recall that 90minutesGoal first broke the news of the charity match in November 2016

Enjoy some pictures from the game

Aigbogun appointed U-23 coach, Manu Garba returns to U-17

Aigbogun U-23 coach

The Nigeria Football Federation ( NFF) have finalized proceedings to appointment coaches for  the Under-17, U-20 and U-23 national team of Nigeria 90minutesgoal.com reports.
Former coach of the U-17 team Manu Garba who lead Nigeria to win the World Youth Championship title in 2013 has been handed back his job as coach of Nigeria's U-17 team.
Garba who failed to qualify Nigeria for the African U-17 championship after losing to Niger Republic in the qualifiers.
Akwa United Coach Abdullahi Maikaba who was handed the U-17 job earlier will now be given a new responsibility as coach of the U-20 team which is nicknamed the Flying Eagles.
The Nigeria U-23 team popularly known as the Dream Team will now be coached by Paul Aigbogun of Enyimba.
90minutesgoal.com scooped that an official announcement will soon be made by the Nigeria Football Federation after the football federation contacted the three coaches.

Ndidi is ranked 9th best player in EPL by Sky Sports

Ndidi Sky Sports ranking
Wilfred Ndidi has been in scintillating form in the colours of Leicester City this season

Nigeria and Leicester City midfielder Wilfred Ndidi has been ranked the ninth best player in the Premier league 90minutesgoal.com reports.
The weekly ranking which is done by Sky Sports for 50 players in the Premier League, sees Ndidi moving up to ninth place from his previous 13th place, accumulating 6,747 points in the process to power up into the top ten.
The Sky Sports Power Rankings is updated weekly during the season.
It shows a player performance over the last five matchdays by awarding points to such player for 32 different stats.

Sokari happy to receive CS Sfaxien's November player of the month

Kingsley Sokari is CS Sfaxien player of the month for November

Former Enyimba midfielder, Kingsley Sokari has been voted CS Sfaxien's player of the month for November 90minutesgoal.com reports.

Sokari received his award from the president of the club Moncef Khemakhem on Wednesday shortly after the club training session.

Sokari has been in a form not made from this part of the world in the month of November, winning four different man of the match award in the said month.

I have been told it is the first time a black player is winning the Player of the Month award in the history of the club, and this makes it a bit more special.
“I’m grateful to the fans for appreciating my contribution to helping the club do well and also to my team-mates whose support was also crucial.
“I can say that this will motivate me more to help the team win the title.” Sokari told 90minutesgoal.com.

It is the first time a back player will receive such award in the history of CS Sfaxien. He was also voted the best foreign player in the Tunisian league in the 2016/2017 season.

Sokari joined CS Sfaxien in 2015 shortly after helping Enyimba win the Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL title that same year.

He is yet to play for the Super Eagles of Nigeria but has played for Nigeria at under 20 and under 23 level.

CS Sfaxien are currently second in the Tunisian Ligue 1.


Ogbeche scores
Ogbeche celebrating his goal on Wednesday

Nigerian International striker Bartholomew Ogbeche continued his fine form for his Dutch club W
llem II Tilburg when he scored his eight goal of the season in his club's 2-2 draw with Vitesse Arhnem in the Dutch Eredivisie league on Wednesday night 90minutesgoal.com reports.
Ogbeche, 33, opened scoring for Willem in the 13th minute before Tim Matavz equalized for Vitesse Arhnem in the 23rd minute
Ben Rienstra made it 2-1 in favour of Willem II Tilburg but Brian Linssen leveled things in the 88th minute.
Ogbeche now has eight goals in seven games for his club and has also scored in five straight matches.
Bartholomew Ogbeche was Part of Nigeria's 23-man squad to the World Cup held in Korea/Japan in 2002.

Plateau State Government to host NPFL winning Plateau United December 22

Governor Lalong host Plateau United

Victorious players and officials of Plateau United's NPFL title winning squad are set to be hosted by the Plateau State governor, Simon Lalong, next week Friday December 22 90minutesgoal.com reports.

The Jos based club won their first ever Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL trophy last season defeating closet challengers MFM, Enyimba and seventeen other contestants.

During the ceremony, governor of Plateau State, Mr Simon Lalong is expected to announce a financial reward for the officials and players of the team.

"Yes our executive governor, His Excellency Mr Simon Lalong has promised to host us at the government house in Jos next week Friday ,” Plateau United coach Kennedy Boboye told 90minutesgoal.com on Wednesday.

"We are looking forward to hand over the trophy to him and also present are plans and target for the upcoming new season to him.

Plateau United will represent Nigeria in the CAF Champions League alongside MFM next year.

They have been drawn against Cameroonian side Eding Sports FC in the preliminary round.

Full Draw

Malian League runners up vs MFM
MFM vs Malian League runners up

Plateau United vs Eding Sport of Cameroon
Eding Sport of Cameroon vs Plateau United

Akwa United vs Hawks of Gambia
Haws of Gambia vs Akwa United

Enyimba vs (winner of Champions of Benin Republic league and Hafia of Guinea)

NFF consider Nigeria vs Egypt friendly in Abuja

Nigeria vs Egypt friendly

The Nigeria Football Federation is considering a friendly in Abuja against seven times AFCON winners and World Cup bound Pharaoh's of Egypt.
Secretary general of the NFF Mohammed Sanusi hinted that the NFF is also considering two other high profile friendlies which will be played in Abuja before the World Cup in June.
"Yes we are considering playing three countries in Abuja. We are yet to finalize proceedings, but Egypt is one of them". Sanusi told 90minutesgoal.com.
Nigeria will play the Three Lions of England and the Polish national team in another set of friendly matches scheduled to hold in June 2018 and March 23, 2018 respectively.
Nigeria last played Egypt in March 2016 during the qualification series for the 2017 AFCON.
Ramadan Sobhy scored the only goal of that epic game in the 64th minute that ensured Nigeria missed the 2017 AFCON which was won by Cameroon.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

German players to get N148m Bonus If They Win World Cup

Germany World cup bonus
Germany won the World Cup in 2014

The German Football Association (DFB) announced on Wednesday that each member of the German squad will get 350,000 euros ($411,267) bonus if Germany wins the World Cup title next year in Russia 90minutesgoal.com reports.

This latest prize money is a major increase compared to the 300,000 euros each player got for winning the 2014 World Cup final in Brazil.

The German machines will  kick start the defence of the title they won in 2014 against Mexico on June 2017 after they were grouped alongside Mexico, Sweden and South Korea in Group F when the draw was held on December 1, 2018.

“For our players, it is a great motivation to become world champions back-to-back for the first time in the history of German football,” said DFB president Reinhard Grindel.
“That would be a title for the eternity and certainly worth a special bonus.
“But you can feel in this team, that the sporting challenge is the main focus and not the economic aspect.”
There will be no cash prize for Germany if they progress from the group stage and also scale through the second round as the German FA believes Germany is a tournament team that should not find those stages difficult to scale through.
However each player will get 75,000 euros fro the quarter-finals, where each player would get 75,000 euros.
The cash rises to 125,000 euros for the semi-finals, 150,000 for third place and 200,000 if they lose the final on July 15 at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium.

CAF Club: Plateau United to face Cameronian Club, Akwa United to face Hawks of Gambia

The four clubs that will represent Nigeria in the continent next year now know their opponents 90minutesgoal.com reports.
The draw which was conducted at the CAF headquarters in Cairo on Wednesday and exclusively monitored by 90MinutesGOAL sees MFM traveling to Mali for the first leg tie to play Real Bamako
Nigeria Professional Football League champions Plateau United will welcome Cameronian side Eding Sport FC to Jos in the first leg of the CAF Champions league preliminary qualifier.

Plateau United, should they win the game against Eding Sport, will face former champions Etoile Sportive du Sahel of Tunisia in the first round

In the confederation cup, AITEO Cup winners Always United will play host to Gambia side Hawks FC in the first leg in Uyo.
Two times CAF African Champions league winners Enyimba have been given a bye into the next round

The People’s Elephant will face the winner between Benin Republic representative and Aseca Abidjan in the first round.
You will recall that the league in Benin Republic was not functional for two seasons (2014/2015 and 2015/2016) due to internal crisis which led to a FIFA ban which was recently lifted.
The League in Benin Republic is still on and whoever wins the league will play Aseca Abidjan, while Enyimba lies in wait.
The preliminary stages of the CAF Champions League and CAF Confederations Cup will take place between February 9-11, 2018 and February 16-18, 2018.
The first round matches will hold between March 9-11, 2018 and March 16-18, 2018.

Full Draw

Real Bamako vs MFM
MFM vs Real Bamako

Plateau United vs Eding Sport of Cameroon
Eding Sport of Cameroon vs Plateau United

Akwa United vs Hawks of Gambia
Hawks of Gambia vs Akwa United

Enyimba vs (winner of Champions of Benin Republic league and Aseca Abidjan)

Weep not Nigerians, Why Government must Probe NFF over FIFA sanction

Probe Nigeria  NFF over sanction

The feelings of soccer loving Nigerians since the news of FIFA sanction on the Super Eagles broke on Tuesday is one filled with disappointment towards the school boy error of an organization saddled with the responsibility of managing the affairs of football in Africa's biggest country since 1945.

The fielding of an ineligible player in the person of Shehu Abdullahi against Algeria is one talking point that will not be swept under the rug easily.

This is not the first time the NFF or the NFA (as it was previously christened) will fail Nigerians. So fasten your seat belt while I take you on a short memory lane.

In 1993, the football federation then knkwn as NFA forgot the jerseys of the Super Eagles in Abeokuta and the Super Eagles led by Stephen Keshi had to cut their track suits to make shorts out of them which was used to play Burkina Faso.

How about 1997 when passports of the Golden Eaglets were forgotten in Lagos by an official of the NFF. The Golden Eaglets were suppose to play Benin Republic in Ibadan and the Beninoise refuse to play despite officials of the NFF begging for the match to be delayed while they head to Lagos to get the passport.

Nigeria was eventually thrown out of the qualifiers after Benin Republic lodged a protest.

How about the embarresment Obafemi Martins received when an official of the NFF posted a wrong age of him in the website. This sparked up a controversy were Martins was acused of lying about his age.

We must be grateful that the latest error did not affect our World Cup appearance next year. The story would have been different if our last game was against Zambia.

This mistake has once again proved that football is not professionally run in this country. Our country Nigeria is blessed with abundant pool of talents scattered around the world but we cannot confidently boast of an effective and efficient organizational system.

The problem of Nigeria's football lies with the management. The NFF is filled some persons or people who have no clear cut idea how to run football. 

How else can you explain the failure of the Technical department of the NFF to notify the coaching department of the Super Eagles that the said player Shehu Abdullahi is not eligible despite receiving a mail from FIFA one month to the game against Algeria.

The lousy excuse given by the NFF claiming that the mail sent by FIFA was received by a sick staff of the NFF who failed to notify the appropriate department is laughable.

The way forward is to restructure the NFF, which is filled with some civil servants who am just there to receive wages and share largess.

The federal government of Nigeria should launch a full scale probe into this incident and all those who brought this mess to Nigeria should be shown the proverbial exit door.

The World Cup is fast approaching and we must learn from our mistake to avoid a repeat of this ugly drama.

Chinedu Laurel Okorodike

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Four reasons why Victor Moses did not win the BBC African Footballer of the year

Why Victor Moses lost BBC award

It is no longer news in the football fraternity that on Monday Mohammed Salah was voted the  BBC African Footballer of the year for 2017 defeating other contestants such as Sadio Mane, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Victor Moses and Naby Kieta.

Chinedu Laurel Okorodike outlines four reasons why Nigerian International Victor Moses did not win the 2017 BBC African Football of the year.

1. Nigeria is presently divided along ethnic lines.
Yes this may sound bitter to hear, but the truth must be told. Nigeria is presently divided as their is no unity among the three major ethnic group that make up the country (Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa).

So instead of over 200 million citizens of Nigeria seeing Victor Moses as a national project, they tend to see voting for him as the duty of a particular tribe.

2. The interested ones did not vote
No matter how divided Nigeria may be, one thing you cannot take away is the fact that football still keeps us together partially.

So having said that, only few logged into the BBC website to vote for Moses out of the millions of Nigerians that claim to love Moses, the national team and the beautiful game.

If not how can you explain the fact that Nigeria as a country with over 200 million citizens could not give Moses good number of votes, instead he finished 4th and Salah who hails from Egypt with a population of 95 million, finished as winner.

3. The Present is fresher in the memory than the past.

The award was meant to reward African players who had a splendid 2016/2017 season which makes Moses the favorite.

But it seems most voters forgot about that and instead voted Mohammed Salah who is presently in seventh heavens for Liverpool.

If we compare the stats we can deduce that Moses had a better 2016/2017 season were he was splendid for Chelsea in their EPL title winning run and also for Nigeria in their quest to qualify for the 2018 world cup.

Salah scored 15 goals in 31 matches for AS Roma in 2016/2017, prior before joining Liverpool, but his work rate in 2016/2017 for club and country cannot match that of Moses.

4. Finally, winning awards in Modern day football depends on your position as a player
It is an undisputed fact that to win any award in modern day football the odds favour you if you are an offensive player.

A striker who bangs in 25 goals in a season is preferred to a goalkeeper who made 30 saves in a season, likewise a Mohammed Salah who scored 15 goals for AS Roma in a season looks more juicy and appealing to the heart than a Victor Moses who threw in every foot and body for Chelsea including scoring few decisive goals and running the right-wing back position like a formular one car driven by the legendary Michael Schumacher or the crazy drivers that serve as escorts to some or almost all political figures in Nigeria.

Did I miss out any point? or do you have any other point you feel cost Victor Moses the award, feel free to comment below.

Chinedu Laurel Okorodike

Breaking: FIFA fines and subtract 3 points from Nigeria for fielding ineligible player vs Algeria

FIFA sanctions Nigeria vs Algeria

FIFA's judgmental hammer has fallen on Nigeria as the country has been punished for fielding an ineligible player in their final World Cup qualifying match against Algeria in November.

Right back Shehu Abdullahi picked up yellow cards in previous matches and was suppose to miss the final game against Algeria, but he was fielded and played the entire game.

According to FIFA rule a player who picks up two yellow cards in two different World Cup qualifying match will serve a one match ban.

Abdullahi picked up a yellow card in Super Eagles first leg, second round tie against Swaziland in November 2015 and the 1-0 win over Zambia in October.

The match which was played on a cold night in the Algerian city of Constantine ended in a 1-1 draw , but now that result has been overturned as Algeria has been handed three points and three goals.

The Nigeria Football Federation was also fined US$6,000 for failure to spot the incidence.

Final Standing
Nigeria --- 11 points
Zambia ---- 8 points
Cameroon --7 points
Algeria ------ 5 points

By Chinedu Laurel Okorodike

Nigeria vs Poland friendly match gets date

Nigeria vs Poland March 23, 2018
The Super Eagles will play Poland in an International friendly on March 23, 2018

The Super Eagles of Nigeria Nigeria will play the Polish national team in a friendly match on March 23 90minutesgoal.com can exclusively report.
"Yes we can confirm that we are playing Nigeria on March 23, we are yet to make a decision on the venue of the match” Polish Football Association spokesman Jakub Kwiatkowski said.
The Polish national team is a similar opposition to Iceland who were grouped alongside Nigeria, Argentina and Croatia in Group D of next year's World Cup, hence Nigeria's coach Gernot Rohr is taking the friendly game against Poland very serious
Nigeria will tackle Iceland on June 22, 2018 exactly six days after playing Croatia on June 16.

(See Photos): Kastina United striker Eleje proposes to Girlfriend Romantically

Kastina United striker Eleje Proposes at Daniel Etor Wedding
Obinna Eleje asking the one million dollar question to his girlfriend at Daniel Etor wedding.

They say surprises are unpredictable as they can hit you at any time. This was the case of Amara the beautiful girlfriend of Kastina United striker Obinna Eleje who received a surprised marriage proposal ring from her boyfriend at an usual place.

The venue of Obinna Eleje's proposal to his girlfriend was at the wedding of Daniel Etor who plays for Al Nasr in Oman.

Etor who proposed to his now wedded wife in November 2016 at the Abuja Area 3 Football pitch, had his wedding on Saturday in Abuja.

Eleje who was a former player of Enyimba, Nasarawa United and FC Wallen of Switzerland, went down on one knee, holding the ring with both fingers, before asking the one million dollar question which is "will you marry me"?. 

A question the beautiful Amaka wasted no time in giving a positive answer to. 

"I was every shocked, I wasn't expecting this, I wanted the ground to open up and swallow me because all eyes were on me", an elated Amaka who managed to catch her breath told www.90minutesgoal com.

"I am lucky to have a romantic boyfriend, who knows how to give a lady attention" she concluded.

The lovebirds met two years ago, and Amaka is presently participating in the mandatory National Youth Services Corps, NYSC.

See more photos below