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Falode Congratulates Nnadozie, extols Gusau’s Women Football Development Initiatives



The Chairperson of the Women’s Football Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation, Ms Aisha Falode, has congratulated Super Falcons of Nigeria and Paris Football Club goalkeeper, Chiamaka Nnadozie, for her consistent heroic displays for both club and country.

The former Rivers Angels goalkeeper made a penalty save to help her club Paris Football Club keep a clean sheet in a second leg match against Wolfsburg ladies of Germany at home having played a 3 all draw in Germany. Her performance earned her club qualification to the group stage of the UEFA Women’s Champions League.

Falode, a former Chairperson of the Nigerian Women Football League board who brought her expertise to the development and professionalism of the women’s league in Nigeria, while Chiamaka was still playing in the domestic league stated that: “Chiamaka’s courageous displays in the past can not be overlooked.

“It is no longer news that the same impeccable display by her, saving two penalties against a traditional Arsenal Ladies that ended their campaign in the Uefa Women’s Champions League in same qualifiers. This shows that she is a Worldclass goalkeeper and a good ambassador of the NWFL.”

Aisha Falode, who is a board member of the Nigeria Football Federation and was the Head of Delegation for the Nigeria team to the FIFA Women’s World Cup in France 2019 inputted that the World Cup was the turning point for Chiamaka.

Falode explained further that, Nnadozie used that platform to set a record as the youngest goalkeeper to keep a clean sheet at that level , she was 18 years old then.

“Nigerians are yet to forget her heroic performance at the recently concluded FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia/New Zealand.
She not only started the journey of the ouster of the current Olympic Champions, Canada, out of the World Cup with her heroic penalty save and the player of the match award.“

The former member of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Media Committee was emphatic that Chiamaka deserved to be among the top goalkeepers shortlisted by FIFA and top 3 nominees for the 2023 CAF Woman Player of The Year.

“She is arguably the best goalkeeper in Africa. Her composure, command in between the sticks, leadership qualities and sound judgement are attributes that distinguish her.

Ever since she took over from Tochukwu Oluehi in the Senior Women World Cup held in France 2019, it has been from one accolade to the other for her.

Her Rise can not be complete without the Nigeria Football Federation that gave her the platform for the world to see her and this she humbly acknowledged.”

Four years later Nnadozie proved her performance in France was not a fluke and showed how valuable she could be to the Super Falcons and Nigeria. She donned the captain’ band in Australia with a joyous consistent performance all through.

Chiamaka Nnadozie while speaking with Madam Aisha Falode popularly called ‘MamaSports’ beaming with smiles. ”I can only give God the Glory in my Football career.

“I want to make a huge difference in my career and also help Nigeria and my club at every level.
“I want to make Nigeria proud. Help me thank the NFF President, Gusau, for his consistent and incontestable support for the continued growth and development of all our national women’s teams since he came on board as the president of the NFF.

“I will also appreciate president Gusau for the opportunity I was given to serve and serve well.
I hope to consistently bring joy to my fans and Nigerians.“

Another Midfeild general of the Super Falcons, Christy Ucheibe,, also had a hand in SL Benfica’s progress to the group stage as they thrashed Apollon Limassol in the UEFA Women’s Champions League qualifiers.

Ucheibe was one of the two players that successfully scored their kick from the penalty spot against England in the round of 16 , a game Falcons lost despite a spirited and well appreciated applause from fans all over the world.

Aisha Falode who is an elite CAF Match Co-ordinator was full of praises and thankful to President Ibrahim Musa Gusau whom in strong terms she stated is a leader that is very patient and believes in anall inclusive leadership style.

“He gave women leadership positions in the women’s football community and would do anything to support the growth of women football.

It is no surprise that the Flamingos our U17 team was the third best nation at the World Cup in India in their category.
Gusau had lunch with the young ladies, very fatherly and quite inspiring.

He also gave total support to the Super Falcons before, during and after the World Cup in Australia.

He has resolved to give total support to the Super Falcons in their quest to qualify for the next Olympics come July 2024.

Gusau is also confident that the Super Falcons will complete La Decimal in the next African Women’s Cup of Nations in Morocco next year,“Falode rounded up.


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Xavi faces sack at Barcelona



Barcelona are poised to sack coach Xavi Hernandez just weeks after he made a U-turn and decided to stay at the club, Spanish

Barcelona are poised to sack coach Xavi Hernandez just weeks after he made a U-turn and decided to stay at the club, Spanish media has reported.

Catalan radio station RAC-1 said president Joan Laporta had decided to sack Xavi, with daily newspaper Sport confirming the news, while AS said Barcelona were already deciding who would replace the coach.

In January, Xavi said he would leave at the end of the season but, after a run of strong form, in April he and president Joan Laporta agreed the coach would stay for the next campaign, with his contract expiring in June 2025.

However, Laporta did not travel with the team for their 2-0 in at Almeria in La Liga on Thursday, with Spanish media reporting he was angry with Xavi’s pre-match comments.

The coach had highlighted Barcelona’s financial difficulties in comparison to the strength of new Spanish champions Real Madrid and other European giants.

“Barcelona fans have to understand, we’re not in the same situation (as those clubs),” said Xavi on Wednesday.

The coach stood by his words on Thursday when he was asked about Laporta not attending the Almeria match.

“They haven’t told me anything personally… We travelled with the sporting vice-president, more directors, all normally,” Xavi told reporters late Thursday. “I said what I think is real, that we will fight for all the trophies, with a lot of hope, with ambition, but that the situation is not easy.

“We are working very well, the club most of all, to change this situation.”

Barcelona won La Liga last season but were not able to defend the title. They went out of the Champions League in the quarter-finals to Paris Saint-Germain and will end the season trophy less.

Real Madrid thrashed Barca in the Spanish Super Cup final while Athletic Bilbao eliminated them in the Copa del Rey.

In April, Xavi, 44, said he was “full of hope” and that fans, players and “above all the confidence of the president and (sporting director) Deco” was what convinced him to stay.

Laporta said at the time that he was glad Xavi would remain at the helm and that it was good for the stability of the club.

“It’s great news that Xavi is staying,” the president told a news conference.

“The team we have, that is (still) consolidating, with very young players, needs that stability.

“Xavi is a reference for young players and we can see that – today I’m especially pleased, and the board have unanimously supported this decision.”

Laporta appointed Xavi, one of Barcelona’s greatest ever midfielders, to replace Ronald Koeman in November 2021.

As a player, Xavi made 767 appearances for Barcelona, winning four Champions Leagues and eight La Liga titles, as well as the World Cup with Spain.

During his time as Barcelona coach, he lifted the Spanish Super Cup last season, along with the league title.



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Kane to miss Bayern’s game at Hoffenheim



Harry Kane will miss Bayern Munich's final game of the season with a back injury - less than a week before Gareth Southgate announces his

Harry Kane will miss Bayern Munich’s final game of the season with a back injury – less than a week before Gareth Southgate announces his England squad for Euro 2024.

Bayern end their campaign at Hoffenheim on Saturday – live on Sky Sports – but Kane has not travelled with the squad.

“Harry Kane is receiving treatment from his personal doctor,” said Bayern boss Thomas Tuchel. “He can’t travel with us.”

Kane has not played since being replaced late in Bayern’s 2-1 defeat to Real Madrid in their Champions League semi-final second leg earlier this month.

Bayern were leading 1-0 in the Bernabeu – and 3-2 on aggregate – when Kane was replaced but conceded two late goals to exit the competition.

Tuchel explained after that defeat that striker Kane had suffered a back injury and on Friday he said: “It was already questionable in Madrid. It’s gotten worse.”

Bayern have endured a difficult campaign, failing to win the Bundesliga for the first time in 12 seasons and exiting the DFB Pokal to third-tier Saarbrucken.

owever, Kane has enjoyed a prolific campaign on an individual level, scoring 44 goals in 45 games across all competitions after joining Bayern from Tottenham in August.



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Van Persie lands first managerial role with Heerenveen



Former Arsenal and Manchester United forward Robin van Persie has been appointed as manager of Eredivisie side Heerenveen, the

Former Arsenal and Manchester United forward Robin van Persie has been appointed as manager of Eredivisie side Heerenveen, the Dutch club has announced.

The 40-year-old, who retired from playing in 2019, has signed a two-year contract in his first role as manager of a senior team.

He has previously spent time working at Feyenoord, the club he began and ended his playing career with, where he took charge of the under-18s side.

Van Persie is the all-time top scorer for the Netherlands national team and was named the PFA Players’ Player of the Year in 2012, one year before he won the Premier League title with Manchester United.

Heerenveen, who are 10th in the Eredivisie, face Sparta Rotterdam in their final match of the season tomorrow.



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