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Iheanacho Shines As Super Eagles Defeat Lone Stars Of Liberia 2-0

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Iheanacho Shines As Super Eagles Defeat Lone Stars Of Liberia 2-0

Leicester City hitman, Kelechi Iheanacho, netted twice as the Super Eagles of Nigeria defeated Lone Stars of Liberia on Friday in their group C Qatar 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign.

The Leicester City striker opened the deadlock in the 22nd minutes after a smart corner routine, exchanging passes with Iwobi, ‘Seniorman’ rifled in a low shot beating the Liberian showstopper at his near post. Osimhen could have doubled the Super Eagles lead, but the Napoli front frontman saw his rebound sail inches wide.

Iheanacho doubled his tally, deftly controlling a Iwobi header with his left foot, finishing sweetly with a placed right-footed shot before the break.

The Nigerians were the dominant side going into half time, and could have increased their lead early in the second half, but Rangers defender, Leon Balogun saw his header sail wide.

READ ALSO: Mourinho Keeps Eyes On Kelechi Iheanacho

Nigeria continued to push forward and could have scored more, but will be satisfied with their dominating performance.

The Super Eagles have their sights set on the Blue Sharks of Cape Verde who they hope to pick off when they clash on Tuesday, September 7th, but will be without today’s star performers, Iheanacho and Iwobi, due to UK COVID regulations on red-list countries.

Though the NFF President, Amaju Pinnick revealed in an interview with CNN ,today, that the football body has applied to the English FA for special consideration, akin to the one extended to European countries after the 2020 European Championships, but as things stand , UK-based players are almost certain to miss the Cape Verde fixture.

 

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Antonio Conte Says Level At Tottenham Not High After NS Mura Defeat

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Antonio Conte Says level At Tottenham Not High After NS Mura Defeat

Antonio Conte says he is not a “magician” and now understands the size of the job on his hands at Tottenham after they suffered a humiliating Europa Conference League defeat at NS Mura.

Conte watched on as his 10-man side were beaten 2-1 by the Slovenian minnows – the lowest-ranked team in the Europa Conference League who had lost all four of their previous games.

Conte, who was appointed to replace Nuno Espirito Santo three weeks ago, has been tasked with taking Tottenham back to the top table of English football.

“After three weeks I am starting to understand the situation. It is not simple,” he said. “At this moment the level at Tottenham is not so high.

“I must be honest and tell you that after three-and-a-half weeks, I am starting to understand the situation. I can tell you that the situation is not simple. It is not simple because in this moment for sure the level of Tottenham is not so high.

“There is an important gap to the top teams in England. Of this we must not be scared. I am here to work, here to improve the situation. I know that in this moment we need to have patience, time and I am here because I know there are problems to solve.

“After three-and-a-half weeks, I am happy to stay here but at the same time I must be honest and tell you we need to work a lot to improve the quality of the [current] squad. We are Tottenham and Tottenham in this moment, there is an important gap.

READ ALSO: Ralf Rangnick To Take Over From Michael Carrick As Manchester United Interim Coach

“If someone thinks that a new coach arrives and Conte won in the past and then I am a magician. But the only magic I can do is to work. To bring work and work to improve, to bring my methods, my ideas of football. But we have to understand that we need time.

“I want to be honest that we need to work a lot to improve the situation. We need time and patience. I don’t know what happens in the future but I am here because I am happy to stay here, to work for Tottenham.”

Conte has hinted his squad has limitations that could stop him achieving his targets at the club.

He said: “We have a lot of desire to work but you can work, work, work, work. But you can push a car at maximum level and sometimes it is not enough to be competitive.

“This road could be one metre or 100 metres, I am not scared, I am ready to go and do this path. But at the same time I want to be very honest, we have to work a lot and improve in many, many aspects.

“We have to do better at many, many things. It is important in football to have vision. Where are you now? And what do you want in the future? I am here to help the club in this aspect.

“The club is outstanding outside, to create a stadium but now we start from behind.

“It is important to know this because I am not a magician and after three weeks I have found players that want to work and have great commitment but sometimes it is not enough.”

 

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Ralf Rangnick To Take Over From Michael Carrick As Manchester United Interim Coach

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Ralf Rangnick To Take Over From Michael Carrick As Manchester United Interim Coach

Manchester United have moved to appoint an interim coach, with an agreement reached between the club and Ralf Rangnick for the former Schalke coach to take charge at Old Trafford until the end of the season.

Michael Carrick’s spell as caretaker coach will come to an end after the clash with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday, with work permit formalities preventing Rangnick from taking charge before then.

READ ALSO: Barcelona’s Hope Of Knockout Stage On The Brinkhttps://www.newtimes.com.ng/14303-2-ucl-barcelonas-hope-of-knockout-stage-on-the-brink/

In a story published by The Athletic, Rangnick has reached an agreement that will release him to work at Old Trafford for six months, and then he will take up a consultancy role with power over club decisions, for two years after that.

This move is similar to the power he held at Lokomotiv Moscow, with his consultancy company having been employed by the Russian club.

It’s reported that an agreement is subject to Lokomotiv Moscow being willing to release him from his obligations to the Russian club, although that isn’t thought to be a problem.

Just which direction the club plans to move in during the summer is unknown, although the presence of Rangnick in theory will allow a style and pressing culture to be installed prior to the new coach’s arrival.

He is credited with the rise of German football after the millennium, with the country totally shifting its focus away from the methods which worked whilst the country was split between East and West, and looking towards a more modern approach.

 

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UCL: Barcelona’s Hope Of Knockout Stage On The Brink

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UCL: Barcelona's Hope Of Knockout Stage On The Brink

Barcelona’s hope of advancing from Group E of the 2021/22 Champions League are uncertain after a 0-0 draw with Benfica on Tuesday night at the Camp Nou.

While the Catalans are still second place in the group and two points ahead of the Portuguese club, Barcelona must now travel to Munich to face nemesis Bayern on the final matchday, while Benfica will take on Dynamo Kyiv.

Xavi went with a starting XI that saw Yusuf Demir start up top in attack, while Clement Lenglet was given the nod at centre-back with Gerard Pique.

Barcelona started strong and had a trio of chances in the first half hour, including efforts from both Demir and Jordi Alba that were saved by Odisseas.

Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen also had to be on his toes to deny Roman Yaremchuk later in the half, followed by a stinging effort from Demir that rang off the crossbar.

READ ALSO: Ronaldo Sets New Record With Goal Against Villarreal

The rain only got heavier as play drifted into the second half, in which Memphis Depay had the first opportunity of the second stanza to break the deadlock, but was cut off by Benfica defender Nicolas Otamendi.

Ousmane Dembele was brought on for Demir to spark the attack midway through the second half and nearly crafted a goal with a cross that floated to Frenkie de Jong, who spun a header that was tipped over the crossbar by Odisseas.

Moments after a Ronald Araujo volley was annulled due to offside, Sergino Dest and Eric Garcia were brought on for Lenglet and Araujo, as Barcelona made one final push for a goal.

A Dembele effort had to be cleared off the goal line, while a stoppage time Gerard Pique header sailed wide.

But, it was a Benfica break that should have yielded a goal, only for Haris Seferovic to fire wide with just Ter Stegen to beat.

In the end, Barcelona were left to rue their missed chances and grapple with what will be a difficult final matchday trip to Germany.

 

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