Super Eagles Manager, Gernot Rohr, is worried that most of his players may not arrive in the country on time for Nigeria’s African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against Sierra Leone due to their inability to get flights out of Europe.
Some European countries have imposed a new lockdown due to a spike in the spread of COVID-19. Super Eagles players and officials are expected to arrive in Benin, venue of the game against Sierra Leone, today and start training for the game tomorrow.
The match will hold on Friday at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin. Speaking on the difficulties being encountered by his players, Rohr praised the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) for its efforts to get the players into the country, saying the team need enough time to train for the game.
“It will be difficult to see all the 23 players arrive in Benin early for the AFCON qualifier. Some of the players are playing on Sunday (yesterday) and most of them will depart their base on Monday.
“They will arrive in Lagos or Abuja on Tuesday and find their way to Benin. With this, the Eagles technical crew will be having just Wednesday and Thursday to train the players ahead of the AFCON qualifier,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Police Public Relations Officer, Edo State Command, DSP Chidi Nwabuzor, told The Guardian, yesterday, that the force is 100 ready to ensure the safety of life and property of players, as well as visitors and Edo residents before, during and after the game against Sierra Leone.
He added: “Security vehicles have started going round the city 24 hours to see that everybody is safe in Benin City.
“We are assuring everybody that the AFCON game will be peaceful. Every police formation in the state is on alert for the game. The security issues that emanated after the EndSars protest have been well handled.
“Public protection is our main goal; we will not have issues curtaining the surge during Super Eagles training and matches.
“Edo State is observing COVID -19 protocols and has imposed curfew in the state; so, I believe the police will not face challenges of crowd control during the game.”
Tokyo Olympics: All Nigeria’s table tennis reps knocked out
Africa’s highest-ranked player Quadri Aruna on Tuesday crashed out of the men’s singles event of the table tennis competition at the ongoing Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Aruna who reached the quarter-finals of the event at the Rio Games in 2016 could not go far this time around as he lost 2-4 in the third round.
He lost to Brazil’s Gustavo Tsuboi at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium 15-13 9-11 6-11 11-7 7-11 6-11.
His exit has brought a sad end to Team Nigeria’s campaign in the sport at this Games.
His three teammates in the sport —— Funke Oshonaike, Offiong Edem, Olajide Omotayo —- have all been eliminated.
Nigeria did not qualify for the doubles events.
John Terry leaves Aston Villa, reveals next plan
Aston Villa assistant coach, John Terry, has announced his departure from the club.
Terry, in a statement via Aston Villa’s official website on Monday, also revealed his next plan.
The Chelsea legend had since been linked with vacancies at Bristol City and West Brom United.
Terry’s statement read in part, “It has been a tremendous honour and privilege to have spent these last three years at Aston Villa, but I feel now is the right time to make the extremely difficult decision to move on.
“My immediate plan is to spend some quality time with my family and, thereafter, hopefully, take up some invitations to visit clubs and managers around Europe to develop my aim and objective of becoming a manager.
“I’ll forever be indebted to the gaffer for giving me the opportunity to start my coaching career at such a wonderful club.
“Finally, I would also like to thank all the players and staff and wish them all the very best for the season ahead and say a huge thank you to the wonderful Aston Villa fans for their support.”
Solskjaer opens up on Pogba rejecting new Man United contract to join PSG
Manchester United boss, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has opened up on midfielder, Paul Pogba rejecting a new contract at the club in a bid to join Paris Saint-Germain.
Solskjaer also expressed confidence that Pogba will be part of his Man United squad next season.
He said this while reacting to reports that the France international has rejected a new deal at the club because he wants to join PSG.
Pogba, whose current deal with Man United will expire next summer, has been linked with a move away from Old Trafford to join PSG.
But Solskjaer has now described the report as ‘speculations’.
Asked if Pogba has rejected a contract and whether Man United will need to sell him, Solskjaer told reporters following the Red Devils’ pre-season 4-2 defeat against QPR on Saturday: “There are always speculations about Paul.
“The talks between the club and Paul’s representatives, I am not in the detail of every single one of them, so I have got nothing to say really about that.
Asked further on PSG’s interest in Pogba, Solskjaer continued: “There’s always speculation about Paul and there’s always clubs being interested.
“Of course, we have seen Paul at his best and Paul knows what we feel about it. And of course, I have enjoyed my time working with him and hopefully, we can work together. Let’s see what happens.”
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