Nigeria: Bayelsa Youth Football Team to Participate In African Youth Cup In Cape Verde

By AIT

Players who were selected from the 2018 Restoration Cup Football Tournament will represent Bayelsa State in the Maiden Edition of the African Youth Cup slated for April 19th through 27 Praia, Cape Verde.

The Special Adviser to Bayelsa State governor, Seriake Dickson on public affairs and media, Daniel Alabrah said the decision was communicated to the organisers on Friday.

According to Alabrah, the youth selected from the 2018 Restoration Cup for the under 16 categories will be joined by four to six over-aged players, not above the age of 17 years old.

Players and officials have been directed to report to camp at the Samson Siasia Stadium in Yenagoa.

The teams that have already confirmed their participation include Tanzania under 16, Saint Benfica of Portugal, Ajsm FC of France, Academic FC of MaLI and Kini – Kini FC of Benin Republic.

Source AIT

Nigeria To Host Volleyball Championships

By The Tide

The Zone 3 President, Confederation of African Volleyball (CAVB), Paul Atchoe, yesterday said that Nigeria was ready to stage the 3rd CAVB Club Championships scheduled to hold in Lagos.

Atchoe told Tidesports source that four countries with 11 teams would compete for honours at the competition biled for the University of Lagos, Akoka Volleyball Hall from April 14 to April 18.

“We are happy that Nigeria has taking up the responsibility to organise the competition which promises to be exciting and very competitive.

“Already we have the teams from three other countries, Ghana, Togo and Benin Republic ready to battle for the championships’ title.

“The essence of this competition is to bring member states together and get them busy and also to create more awareness for the development of the sport.

“We also intend to use the competition as qualifications to pick the best two teams for the CAVB Africa Championships’ coming up later in the year,’’ Atchoe said.

He added that Nigeria was hosting the competition for the second time and was proud of the passion shown by the country’s Volleyball Federation to stage another event.

“This will be Nigeria’s opportunity for hosting the competition second time out because they have shown the big brother character of always coming to our rescue.

“The championships first held in 2015 in Cote D’Ivoire but due to financial constraints could not be hosted by any member country until Nigeria came to help out last year.

“We want to keep volleyball very active in our zone because we know we have abundant talents ready to draw the positive attention for the sport.

“We want to use the competition to develop our youths and create awareness for the sport in Zone 3, this is why as member countries we task ourselves on organising events,’’ Atchoe said.

Source The Tide

ZAMBIA: ARROWS HOST TOP SPOT HUNTING ZESCO UNITED

By Lucky Mwewa Chama

Zambia Air Force sponsored side Red Arrows Football Club will this afternoon welcome seven time Zambia Super League champions, Zesco United at in a rescheduled week seven encounter at Nkoloma Stadium.

The Chisi Mbewe drilled side will play host to Zega, with the Airmen boasting two wins on the trot, a winning run that has seen them beat Zanaco 2-1 at Nkoloma Stadium as well as Mufulira Wanderers 3-nil away in Mufulira over the weekend.

Red Arrows Captain Bruce Musakanya and his lads will be looking to break into the top four with a win, having won the league title once in 2004 and will be fancying their chances of playing continental football with race for the top two places still far from being over.

Zesco on the other hand have also managed to pick six points in their last two league encounters and in the process scoring five goals, allowing two goals. A win for the Ndola based side will see them top the table in Stream A of the transitional league.

On a day that marks exactly one year since George Lwandamina who is fondly called ‘Chicken’ by the Zesco fans was appointed for the second time as Zesco United boss after returning from Tanzania where he coached Yanga Football Club, the likes of Lazarous Kambole will be expected to play a pivotal role for Zesco United alongside Jesse Were and John Ching’andu.

The match will kick-off at 15:00Hrs.

Source Zambian Football

Zimbabwe: Caps United Reports ‘Biased’ Referee To PSL

By Lovemore

Caps United has resolved to officially lodge a complaint with Castle Lager Premier Soccer League (PSL) over what it considers biased officiating during the 0-0 draw with Highlanders at Barbourfields on Sunday.

Makekepeke felt hard done by Midlands’ referee Thabani Bamala who denied them what appeared to be two clear penalties.

Caps United administration manager Morton Dodzo on Tuesday said that the Green Machine will leave no stone unturned to get redress. Speaking to Newsday, Dodzo said:

We are a professional institution and we are guided by rules and regulations. What we are going to do is to make sure we exhaust the legal routes in trying to seek redress.

Yesterday (Sunday), we submitted an official notice to the match commissioner (Malandule) advising them of our intention to officially lodge a complaint against biased officiating. We also notified the PSL that we are going to lodge an official complaint as a club.

We have put in place systems that will help us gather evidence that will support our report and make sure we lodge our complaint within the stipulated time.

We are not going to pre-empt and we are not going to say much, but only to the football statutory bodies in which we have confidence.

We are not only complaining as Caps United but on behalf of all football stakeholders who invest a lot into the game.

The Highlanders vs Caps United match was attended by 13 600 paying fans and broadcast live on ZBCtv.

Highlanders collected ZWR$76 710 from the match after 13 600 fans paid to watch the match.

Source Pindula News

Egypt: Wounded Ahly seeking some solace in Egyptian league

Ahly, licking their wounds following a humiliating 5-0 African Champions League defeat, are seeking some solace in the Egyptian Premier League as they meet Maqassa on Wednesday.

The Red Devils suffered their worst ever defeat in an African competition after being embarrassed in Pretoria as South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns put one foot in the Champions League semis.

Barring a miraculous comeback in Saturday’s second leg, Ahly, who lost in the final of the previous two Champions League editions, will exit the prestigious competition that they last won in 2013.

That will leave them with only two domestic titles to fight for, including the league where they are locked in a tight battle with bitter Cairo rivals Zamalek.

With only two points separating them from leaders Zamalek, Ahly are aware they can ill-afford to drop any points at this crucial stage of the season.

They will move top, at least temporarily, should they beat Maqassa on Wednesday. Zamalek meet Masry one day later.

“I’m responsible for the result against Sundowns and I’m determined to change that situation as soon as possible,” Ahly coach Martin Lasarte said on the club’s official website.

“All of us, including me and the players, will do our best to make up for this cruel defeat,” the Uruguayan added.

Maqassa, who lie fifth in the table with 42 points from 26 matches, drew three of their past five games, winning twice.

Lasarte opted to leave Marwan Mohsen and playmaker Nasser Maher out of Ahly’s squad for the game. Key left-back Ali Maaloul and Angolan winger Geraldo are also out due to automatic suspension.

Ahly comfortably won the reverse league fixture 3-0 in January.

Source Abram Online

South Africa: PSL Confirm Changes To Kick-Off Times, While 6 Serve Suspension

By Soccer Laduma

The Premier Soccer League has confirmed changes to the kick-off times due to the change in season.

With just six games left to play in the current 2018/19 Absa Premiership campaign, the league has since changed afternoon kick-off times from 15h30, to 15h00.

However, the PSL confirmed that this would apply to all fixtures across the PSL, including the National First Division and cup competitions, such as the Nedbank Cup which is currently underway.

“This is in line with PSL’s standard practice of adjusting afternoon kick-off times in winter and in summer.”

“The 15h30 kick-off time will now move to 15h00. This will apply to all Absa Premiership, National First Division and Cup Competitions,” as stated in a press release.

In addition, heading into this weekend’s Absa Premiership clashes, there are currently six players serving a suspension.

Thembinkosi Lorch from Orlando Pirates, Black Leopards’ Khomotso Masia and Khuliso Mudua, Chippa United’s Tercious Malepe and Rusaigh Gamildien and AmaZulu’s Phumlani Gumede will all miss this weekend’s league action.

Source Soccer Laduma

Nigeria: United will bounce back, says Maikaba

Plateau United Manager Abdul Maikaba has assured fans of the Nigeria Professional Football league side that the team will return to winning ways in the coming fixtures.

Maikaba stated this in a chat with http://www.brila.net that it is not too late for his side to come back to a Champions League spot on the NPFL table.

“If you look at it mathematically, we are just ten points adrift the top of the league, if we can have a good run of 6 to 8 matches unbeaten we can overcome this psychological trauma that the team is passing right now. Maikaba said.

Source Brilla

Nigeria: Willy Udube happy with Go Round NPFL season

By Kolade Oni

The Omoku-based side handler has explained some of the challenges his team is facing in their second season in the top-flight

Go Round head coach, Willy Udube has expressed his delight at the club’s form in the 2019 Nigeria Professional Football League despite the challenges that come with playing against other top-flight teams.

Despite only missing out on a place in the relegation zone last season by the whiskers, the Omoku-based side have been turning heads in their second season in the elite division and Udube is thrilled that his inexperienced side is coping in the elite division.

He noted that it has not been easy for him and the rest of the technical crew to ensure that the club remains very competitive amidst experienced clubs in the top-flight who have the financial power to spend big in the transfer market.

“The games are tough, but this is the case because we have a young and inexperienced team,” Udube told the club media.

“I have said it before and I will continue to say it that I have a very average team. Go Round FC is a modest club that does not have the financial power to bring in experienced players to the team.

“All this time, we have been trying to see how we can blend the players we have. It is not easy for us. It is a very big job for us, but I strongly believe that with the little we are putting in, this team will pick up before the middle of the FA Cup.”

Go Round are presently in the sixth spot in the NPFL Group B with 21 points from 14 matches and they will up against FC IfeanyiUbah this weekend in another top-flight action in Nnewi.

Source Goal

Nigeria: Lobi Keep Up With MFM With Sunshine Stars in NPFL

By Ridwan Yusuf

Sikiru Alimi‘s 42nd-minute goal is all Lobi Stars require to collect maximum points and rise from No 8 to fourth in Group A of the Nigeria Professional League (NPFL) 2019. For Sunshine Stars, they drop one place to No 10, allowing Bendel Insurance to gain one spot after the MatchDay 14 tie.

Concise News reports that with two matches outstanding (both away – to Sunshine Stars and Rangers), Lobi Stars are now only three points behind leaders MFM.

At the Aper Aku Stadium in Makurdi on Monday, the two-time Nigeria champions took the game to their visitors from the blast of the whistle with Alimi Sikiru and Samad Kadiri combining well and posing a constant threat to the away side’s defence. However, Sunshine’s Ayo Ojo prevented his team from going down to an early goal pulling some impressive saves.

The defence line of the Akure-based club would be breached in the 42nd minute when tormentor-in-chief, Alimi scored from an assist by Samad.At the start of the second half, Sunshine Stars improved their game, creating some chances, but Lobi shot-stopper, John Lawrence was at his best to help his team clinch all three points.

Following the victory, Lobi Stars have moved to the fourth position with 20 points from 12 games on the Group A log, while Sunshine Stars dropped further into the relegation zone, occupying 10th position with 16 points from 13 games.

Source Concise

Nigeria: UNODC to engage youths on crime prevention through sports

As the World celebrates the International Day of Sports, the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC), has said that plans were on to engage Nigerian youths on crime prevention through sports programmes.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the UN General Assembly declared April 6 every year as the Imternational Day of sports for Development and Peace.

Mr Sylvester Atere, UNODC’s Outreach and Communications Officer in a statement made available to NAN on Saturday in Abuja, said there was hardly any place on earth where the power of sports football in particular was more present than in Nigeria.

He said this was best summed up by Gianni Infantino, President of the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) when he visited Lagos in February 2018.

Atere Quoting Infantino said: “I was told that in Nigeria, football is passion but it is a lie because it is more than that. In Nigeria, I was told that football is love, but it is a lie it is more than that.

“In Nigeria, I was told that football is a religion, but it is a lie. It is more than that. In Nigeria, football is life.”

Atere said that it was on that note the UNODC launched its Youth Crime Prevention through Sports Initiative within the framework of the Global Programme for the Implementation of the Doha Declaration.

He said that under the slogan “Line Up Live Up” (LULU) the initiative has designed a programme for youth, living in neighbourhoods severely affected by crime, drugs and violence, aimed to engage them through sports.

Atere explained that the initiative also seeks to help youths build their resilience and leadership in standing up for themselves and others against these societal ills.

He explained that the potential of sports to promote peace and the rule of law appears unlimited, thus rolling out the LULU programme to Nigeria.

“In a 10-week programme, sports coaches, teachers and others working with youth in sports settings build valuable life skills, such as resisting social pressures.

“The programme will include among others like coping with anxiety and communicating effectively with peers, through a set of interactive and fun exercises.

“The programme has been successfully tested in several countries, including South Africa and in Brazil.

Source PMN