Ronaldo Out For 2 Weeks, Will Miss Copa Del Rey Final | INFORMATION NIGERIA

Ronaldo Out For 2 Weeks, Will Miss Copa Del Rey Final

Posted by: Deolu on April 10, 2014

FIFA player of the year, Real Madrid striker Cristiano Ronaldo is likely to miss Copa del Rey final against Barcelona after having suffered an injury in the first leg of Champions League quarter-final.

Ronaldo Made it 3-2 After the Break But Lionel Messi Had Some Cute Penalty-Taking Skills Up His Sleeves.

The 29-year-old striker, who limped off in the closing stages of the teams win over Borrussia Dortmund, may also miss the first leg of the Champions League semi-finals.

It would be recalled that the Portuguese was subsequently sidelined in the 4-0 win over Real Sociedad at Anoeta and was an unused substitute in the second leg game against Jurgen Klopp’s side.

With the officially confirmed injury to his left hamstring, Ronaldo is now set to be out of game for 2 weeks and miss the crucial Clasico.READ MORE:  http://news.naij.com/64150.html

FIFA April Ranking: Nigeria Moves Two Positions Up | INFORMATION NIGERIA

FIFA April Ranking: Nigeria Moves Two Positions Up

Posted by: Deolu on April 10, 2014

Nigeria have moved up to the 45th position in the latest FIFA global rankings released on Thursday.

The Super Eagles were ranked 47th in the last Fifa rankings following their goalless draw with Mexico in last month’s international friendly.

Europe occupies the top three places on the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking after Portugal climbed third behind leaders Spain and Germany.

They are followed by four South American sides in Colombia, (4th, up 1), Uruguay (5th, up 1) and fierce rivals Argentina (down 3) and Brazil (up 3), who share sixth position. Just 12 points separate this quartet.

Greece return to the top ten for the first time since October 2012, while Scotland moved up 15 places to the 22nd position in the world.

Cote D’Ivoire continue to be the top-ranked African side moving up three places to 21 this month. Egypt also moved up two spots to finish in 24th position in the world and second in Africa. They are followed by Algeria in 25, Ghana 38, Cape Verde 42, Tunisia 49, Cameroon 50, Guinea51 and Mali 59 to round up the African top ten.

Nigeria’s World Cup Group F opponents are ranked thus: Argentina 6, Bosnia-Herzegovina 25 and Iran 37.

The next FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking will be published on 8 May.

Flying Eagles and Their Moroccan Counterparts Share the Spoils | INFORMATION NIGERIA

Flying Eagles and Their Moroccan Counterparts Share the Spoils

Posted by: Omaku Cephas on April 11, 2014

Morocco forced Nigerias Under-20 mens football team, the Flying Eagles, to a 2-all draw in a friendly at the National Sports Centre in Rabat on Wednesday.

The coach Manu Garba side twice got in the lead in the second-half through Alhassan Ibrahims efforts but the North African team eventually drew level in regulation time.

Nigeria reportedly found their way back into the tie and, even after getting off slowly ended the first-half with a larger share of possession.

Kelechi Iheanacho Scores Against Mexico at the 2013 Under-17 World Cup in the UAE.

The visitors wasted a couple of chances but claimed the lead after 64 minutes when Ibrahim gently tapped in from close range.

Morocco restored parity almost immediately when skipper Wilfred Ndidi put a low cross into his own net.

Ibrahim again fired Nigeria ahead in the 81st minute, before skipper Omar salvage a result for the Junior Atlas Lions in stoppage time with a near post header.

Asafa Powell Receives 18-Month Ban for Doping | INFORMATION NIGERIA

Asafa Powell Receives 18-Month Ban for Doping

Posted by: Omaku Cephas on April 11, 2014

Former world 100m record holder Asafa Powell is banned for 18 months by the Jamaican Anti-Doping Disciplinary panel for using a banned stimulant.

The 31-year-old Jamaican sprinter, and his training partner, Sherone Simpson, tested positive for oxilophrine at last years national championships.

They were two of five Jamaicans to test positive in last years doping scandal.

Simpson, a 4×100 relay gold and silver medalist, was handed an 18-month ban verdict by the same panel on Tuesday.

Asafa Powell Slapped With 18-Month Doping Ban.

Olympic discuss thrower Allison Randall got a two-year suspension.

Randall, 25, who holds the Jamaican discuss record with a distance of 61.21m, tested positive for a banned diuretic hydro-chlorothiazide.

The trios ban each have been backdated to 21 June 2013- the date they provided the sample.

They will not compete at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games in July with their suspension set to run until 20 December this year.

Powell denied being a cheat in July last year when he announced his failed dope test, admitting the drug was contained in a supplement given to them by trainer Chris Xureb.

Wigan Stands Between Wenger and the Dream of a Fifth FA Cup | INFORMATION NIGERIA

Wigan Stands Between Wenger and the Dream of a Fifth FA Cup

Posted by: Omaku Cephas on April 11, 2014

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is wary of the challenges posed by FA Cup holders Wigan Athletic ahead of their semi-final clash at the Wembley Stadium on Saturday.

The Gunners last clinched the oldest cup tournament in the world in 2005, at the expense of the then favourites, Manchester United, on penalty shootout.

But Wigans stunning victory over Manchester City in last seasons Wembley final ranks higher in the lists of FA Cup upsets in contemporary times, and the Latics did once more make weight for their credentials as one of the tournaments giant killers by knocking out Manuel Pellegrinis City this season.

Wenger Says the FA Cup is Everybodys Dream.

We all play to win something and if you are in the FA Cup everyone can dream of winning it at the start of the season, Wenger said.

In the championship you can talk and talk but we know the biggest teams will win it.

That open dream is what makes the FA Cup special in football.

The French boss admiration for the Cup tournament also bares on the fact it is the only piece of silverware available for the North London outfit to end the season on a high.

Arsenal are out of the Champions League, and again deep inside the usual end-of-the-season tussle for a fourth place finish in the Premier League, with only a solitary point separating them and fifth placed Everton- who have a game in hand- with just five games left.

Having been acquainted with the drama of the championship since childhood as a school boy in a remote village in France, the 64-year-old reckon, unlike the FA Cup; only seven clubs can dream of winning the league title at the start of the season.

And with Shefield United, who plays Hull City in the other semi-final- still in the competition, one will doubt if the Championship clubs are not plotting to outgun the top flight teams.

Two trips to Wembley before its all done and dusted is uncompromisable for Wenger and his men, yet needs his best team against Wigan who have been playing the best attacking football in the English second division of late.

Aaron Ramsey is set to start after coming on as a substitute on his return to the squad on the back of his three months hiatus in last weekends loss to Everton. Goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski is expected to start in goal.

The manager says Kieran Gibbs, Tomas Rosicky and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are all doubts while Mesut Ozil could be back next Saturday and Laurent Koscielny could be back for Tuesday.

Im expecting everyone to contribute because we have a lot of experience. We have played great games in the FA Cup, Wenger added. We are still in a position where we can have a good season and thats what were focusing on.

Only Licensed Athletes Will Compete in the Golden League- Nesiama | INFORMATION NIGERIA

Only Licensed Athletes Will Compete in the Golden League- Nesiama

Posted by: Omaku Cephas on April 11, 2014

The Technical Director of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) Navy-Commodore Omatseye Nesiama has stressed that only licensed athletes would be allowed to compete in all 2014 Golden League meetings.

Nesiama blazes the organisation of the AFN league meetings in Abuja on Saturday, following his appointment as technical delegate for the capital city arm of the Golden League- the first of six meetings in 2014.

“We intend to use this competition to assess the current state of our athletes especially in the Junior and senior categories,” Nesiama said on the essence of the national athletics league meetings.

Navy-Commodore Omatseye Nesiama Says Only Licensed Athletes Will Compete in the Golden League Meetings.

“In the event that a junior athlete would be competing in the throws, the applicable implements according to their class would be used and results indicated accordingly.”

Nesiama reiterated that only athletes, who are registered with clubs and/or states athletics bodies who had also sent in their entries for various events, would be eligible for participation.

“Please note and assist to disseminate that for the umpteenth time we are insisting that only licensed athletes with registered clubs/states that have also sent in their entries for the various events that would be allowed to compete in the League,” added the AFN boss.

“The cut-off date for the making of entries was Wednesday. This is the only way we can come up with a clear start list at least 24hrs before the competition that we aim to achieve this season.”

He also says “at least one member of the Technical Committee has been appointed as technical delegate” for the remaining five arms of the Golden League.

The first AFN Golden League meeting in Abuja starts with a promotional 20,000m and 10,000m men and women’s work by 8:00 and 8:30 on Saturday.

Rodgers, Gerrard and Suarez Claim Barclays March Prize | INFORMATION NIGERIA

Rodgers, Gerrard and Suarez Claim Barclays March Prize

Posted by: Omaku Cephas on April 11, 2014

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has been named Barclays Premier League Manager of the Month for March.

The Northern Irish boss guided the Reds to five wins in all league games played in the month, including the 3-0 thrashing of reigning Champions Manchester United on March 16 and the 4-0 home win over Tottenham Hotspur on March 30.

It is the second time he is winning the award after also triumphing in August 2013.

Brendan Rodgers Watches From the Sideline During Liverpools 1-2 Win Over West Ham at Upton Park

Club captain Steven Gerrard and striker Luis Suarez completed a triplet of honours for the league leaders, having being named joint Player of the Month.

The pair combined for 10 goals in their sides unbeaten run during the month- Gerrard scored four and Suarez netted six including a hat-trick in the 6-3 win at Cardiff City.

Maurice Greene to Take Charge of Team Nigeria Relay | INFORMATION NIGERIA

Maurice Greene to Take Charge of Team Nigeria Relay

Posted by: Omaku Cephas on April 11, 2014

The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) announces the appointment of former Olympics and World sprint champion, Maurice Greene, as the relay coordinator of Team Nigeria track and field athlete.

The AFN Secretary General, Olumide Bamiduro, on Thursday revealed in a statement, Greene’s contract is expected to begin at the Mt. Sac Relay in California later this month through to the Africa Senior Athletics Championships in Marrakesh, Morocco in August.

The 39-year-old former 100m world record holder with a time of 9.79 seconds will also be in charge of Nigerian athletes at the IAAF World Relays in the Bahamas and the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Maurice Greene Won Four Olympic Medals and Five World Championships Medals in His Hay Days. Getty Images.

The retired American athlete, now a TV personality and host of the monthly show ‘Greene Light’ on Eurosport, is said to be excited at the new challenge, stating in his acceptance that he relishes the prospect of working for Team Nigeria and that it is his own way to giving back to Africa.

On Loan Thibault Courtois Free to Face Chelsea in Champions League Semis | INFORMATION NIGERIA

On Loan Thibault Courtois Free to Face Chelsea in Champions League Semis

Posted by: Omaku Cephas on April 11, 2014

Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Thibault Courtois, who is on loan from Chelsea FC, will be eligible to face his parent club in the Champions League semi-finals, according to an Uefa statement released on Friday.

Premier League club Chelsea and current La Liga leaders Atletico were pitted against each other in the draw for the last-4 of the ongoing tournament conducted in Nyon on Friday noon.

Media reports had earlier speculated that the Belgium goalie- under the terms of the deal that allowed him play for the Spanish club- was doubtful for any potential tie between the Los Roji Blancos and the Blues, be it a semi-finals or final fixture.

Thibault Courtois has Been Passed Free to Play Against Parent Club Chelsea in the Champions League Semi-Finals.

The club president, Enrique Cerezo, had reportedly ruled out fielding Courtois in any prospective meeting between both clubs, sighting the payment of a sizeable fee to the London club as a deterrent.

Its a number we cant afford to pay, Cerezo said.

Reports in Spain had suggested it could cost Atletico £4.9m for the 21-year-old goalkeeper to line up against Chelsea.

But Uefa have now rejected that idea, stressing it contradicts the integrity of sporting competition as clubs cannot influence others team sheet.

The Uefa statement read: Both the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Disciplinary Regulations contain clear provisions which strictly forbid any club to exert, or attempt to exert, any influence whatsoever over the players that another club may (or may not) field in a match.

It follows that any provision in a private contract between clubs which might function in such a way as to influence who a club fields in a match is null, void and unenforceable so far as UEFA is concerned.

The statement further warned the consigned clubs to desist from employing such terms of contract in an Uefa competition.

Furthermore, any attempt to enforce such a provision would be a clear violation of both the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Disciplinary Regulations and would therefore be sanctioned accordingly, the statement added.

Meanwhile, Chelsea chief executive, Ron Gourlay, has confirmed that the club will allow Courtois play against them in the Champions League semi-finals.

The loan was arranged back in the start of the season. He can play against Chelsea, thats never in doubt, Gourlay said.

Regarding the Uefa statement well evaluate that in due course. As far as we are concerned we will comply with loan rules. He can play in both ties against Chelsea if selected. That is fact.

Courtois is in his third season on loan at Atletico, after failing to make an appearance for his parent club since penning down a five-year deal from Genk in 2011.

D’ Tigers to Honour Chavez With Venezuela Friendly | INFORMATION NIGERIA

D Tigers to Honour Chavez With Venezuela Friendly

Posted by: Omaku Cephas on April 11, 2014

An international basketball friendly match is on the card in Abuja between D Tigers of Nigeria and Venezuela. The match is a memorial in honour of the former President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, who died on March 5, 2013 at the age of 58 years following a long battle with cancer.

The President of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), Tijjani Umar, revealed this last night during a courtesy visit by the executive committee of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) Abuja chapter.

Umar said that the Director General of NSC, Hon Gbenga Elegbeleye, had a meeting on Wednesday with officials of the Venezuelan Embassy in Abuja to promote bilateral sports partnership between the two countries and as well engage in a friendly to commemorate Chavez anniversary.

DTigers to Play Venezuela in an International Friendly.

We have agreed in principle to organise a match in Abuja in honour of Chavez who was a charismatic leader who stood out for his passion for his people. The Venezuelan Embassy will officially write to NSC in May for the match, Umar said.

It will be a particular match of interest for Nigeria given that it was in Venezuela that DTigers secured a historic ticket for the basketball event at London 2012 Games in a play-off group involving Greece, Lithuania, Venezuela, Pueto Rico and Nigeria.

The mere fact we qualified for the Olympics in Venezuela lives with me. The passion of the people for basketball is unbelievable. We lost our first match to the host team by two points but afterward showed great character to bag a sport for the Olympic Games, Umar said.

Umar said The Tigers will build on their momentum in London and the recent Afro basketball Championship in Abidjan by focusing in a discernable manner a slot to the 2014 Olympics in Rio.

We have appointed a technical director and are looking at the future. What we did in London and at the Afrobasketball are things in perspective. We are touch with all members of the team and will soon appoint our coaches and call the team together, Umar said.

Source: This Day