Eagles Honour Keshi at Training, Vow to Defeat Bafana Bafana

first_imgKeshi led Eagles to win the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations as captain and returned 19 years later to win the AFCON 2013 as head coach. He died of cardiac arrest in Benin City on June 7, 2016.But before Eagles began their last open training session at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo yesterday, interim Captain of the team, Ogenyi Onazi led the glory seeking new generation Eagles in honouring Keshi who is unarguably the most successful indigenous handler of the three-time African champions.The Trabzonspor of Turkey midfielder later posted his appreciation for Keshi on his twitter handle.“It’s one year now, I will never forget you sir you gave me the opportunity that made me what I am today. Rest In Peace. BIG BOSS,” said Onazi in remembrance of Keshi.Even NFF President, Amaju Pinnick who was not at the training session in Uyo, led football enthusiasts and administrators who were present at Lagos State Football Association EkoFootball public presentation ceremony at the MUSON Centre at Onikan, observe a minute silence for Keshi.Most Super Eagles who spoke with THISDAY correspondent in Uyo expressed their zeal to win the match for Keshi and Nigerians.“ This match is for you Big Boss. We are determined to make you proud,” observed Onazi in memory of the coach who made him a household name in Nigerian football today.Eagles defender, Williams Troost Ekong, declared: “It is going to be a good game. Everyone is fit and ready. It will be a healthy competition, everybody is working hard to justify his slot. We are going to win this match for our fans to be happy,” stressed Ekong.Also reacting, Eagles attacking midfielder, Oghenekaro Etebo, said that the team was ready to take on Bafana Bafana and win squarely. “We need to win. Coach Gernot Rohr has a good record. All we believe is that we are going to win”.Noting that the South Africans had won all their nine games they last played, Etebo admitted that the game would not be an easy one.On his part, Goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa, said they were ready for the game adding that the other two goalkeepers, Daniel Akpeyi and Dele Alampasu, were in top form, “we are happy with one another.”The trio of Ahmed Musa, Elderson Echiejile and Kenneth Omeruo took part in yesterday’s training session for Rohr to have a full complement of invited players for the game.Yesterday’s training was Eagles last open session. Reporters are barred from the team’s closed training today ahead of Saturday’s must-win AFCON 2019 qualifying clash with South Africa.Meanwhile, Akwa Ibom state Commissioner of Police, Don Awunah, has expressed the readiness of the state’s Police Command to guarantee soccer loving Nigerians a peaceful atmosphere devoid of any infractions on Saturday.The State Police boss in a statement signed by the Command’s Public Relations Officers (PPRO), DSP Chukwu Ikechukwu, directed the deployment of over 500 specially selected officers knowledgeable in crowd control and policing events of such magnitude to provide top notch security before, during and after the football match.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram AFCON 2019 Police to deploy 500 senior officers for matchDuro Ikhazuagbe and Okon Bassey in UyoSuper Eagles players and officials wednesday observed a one minute silence for a former captain and coach of the senior national team, Stephen Okechukwu Keshi, who died exactly one year ago.last_img read more

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Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola: ‘I have no issue with Joe Hart’

first_imgManchester City manager Pep Guardiola says he has no issue with goalkeeper Joe Hart despite excluding him from his first Premier League starting XI.Argentina’s Willy Caballero played in goal for City in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Sunderland with Hart on the bench.Asked how England international Hart, 29, took the news of his omission, Guardiola said: “He reacted well.”I have a lot of respect for Joe. I know how good a goalkeeper he is, but I decided for Willy.”The Spaniard, who took over from Manuel Pellegrini in the summer, said: “In the end I have a squad and I decide what I see.”I have to create a team spirit. It’s not about tactics, it’s not about anything, and I decided today for this line-up.” Match of the Day pundit Ian Wright believes Hart is the superior keeper but said he has work to do to impress Guardiola.”It leaves Hart with a lot to think about,” said the former Arsenal striker. “Coming off the Euros and some high-profile mistakes, he has to suck it up, be professional and get himself going again.”I don’t think Caballero is a better keeper than Joe.”Guardiola also left fully fit midfielder Yaya Toure and defender Eliaquim Mangala out of his squad. Midfielder Samir Nasri is still not match fit.He said: “I have no complaints about these names. Yaya trained really good, Samir arrived a little bit overweight but in the last one or two weeks he has been training amazing. I am really impressed with his quality. Mangala, you know better than me how professional he is.” Argentina striker Sergio Aguero opened the scoring against the Black Cats from the penalty spot before Jermain Defoe equalised in the 71st minute.Paddy McNair, who recently signed for Sunderland, inadvertently headed into his own net in the 87th minute to give City victory.Guardiola praised winger Raheem Sterling for his performance. The England winger won the early penalty when he was brought down in the area by Patrick van Aanholt.”Sterling was amazing. That is what we need. People to play wide and have the quality to go one on one, on the outside, inside, right, left. That is important. He is a fighter,” said Guardiola.City’s next match is on Tuesday when they play Steaua Bucharest in the first leg of their Champions League qualifier.last_img read more

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