We have compiled some of the biggest stories today in Sports from CAF Champions League draw today to NFF act after FIFA’s sanction and Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta’s best memories. Let’s get to it!
The NFF have taken their search for a team to play against the Super Eagles in a World Cup send forth match next June to Egypt, as officials of the soccer governing body have opened talks with the North African nation over the possibility of their team, the Pharaohs lining out at the Abuja National Stadium.
This much has been revealed by NFF general-secretary, Mohammed Sanusi, who also admitted that nothing has been finalised yet with the Egyptians over the reality of a pre-World Cup friendly in Abuja before the Eagles travel to Russia for the Mundial.
Both countries will head to Russia next June, with memories of how Nigeria lost 1-0 to Egypt in an African Nations Cup qualifier held at El Arab Stadium on March 29, 2016.
The CAF Champions League draw today, drew up lightweight opposition for Nigeria’s two representatives, as NPFL winners, Plateau United of Jos will take on Eding of Cameroon, while runners-up, MFM FC of Lagos will face Mali’s second placed side in the preliminary round.
Both clubs are making their debut in the money-spinning annual clubs’ competition, for which they will now contest the first and second leg matches of their maiden outings between February 9 and 18.
Should both Nigerian clubs advance to the Round of 16, Plateau will face Etoile du Sahel of Tunisia, while MFM will take on the winners of the clash between AC Atoho of Congo and MC Alger of Algeria in March.
In Other News,
NFF’s first vice-president, Seyi Akinwunmi has been named to head a four-man committee saddled with the task of getting to the root of issues that led to an oversight leading to a fine and point deduction against the country by FIFA.
In the wake of the scary development that saw FIFA fine Nigeria an equivalent of N2m, reduce the total points accumulated by the Super Eagles to 13 and equally nullify the team’s unbeaten run to Russia 2018, NFF president, Amaju Pinnick announced that Akinwunmi will head the panel to unravel issues behind record keeping errors during the final World Cup qualifier away to Algeria on November 10.
The concluding match of Group B of the African series for Russia 2018 ended in a 1-1 draw, but FIFA on Tuesday awarded all three points to Algeria following Nigeria’s use of ineligible defender Abdullahi Shehu in the encounter.
On The International Scene,
Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Guendogan believes the club’s 11-point lead in the Premier League before the halfway stage will make rival teams more determined to beat them as they approach a busy festive period.
City are unbeaten in the league with 46 points after 15 wins and one draw and are on an English top-flight record 14-game winning streak after ending Manchester United’s run of 40 home games without loss in all competitions with a 2-1 win on Sunday.
City could extend that record when they face bottom side Swansea City, but Guendogan warned his teammates that they cannot afford to take things lightly despite the distance between them and the chasing pack.
Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta admitted his late goal to knock Chelsea out in the Champions League semifinals in 2009 is one of his best memories ahead of his club’s return to Stamford Bridge.
The sides were paired together again in Monday’s Champions League last 16 draw with Barca travelling to London for the first leg on February 20.
Iniesta’s last-gasp equaliser eight years ago after Chelsea had been denied a series of penalty claims by Norwegian referee Tom Henning allowed Barca to reach the final on away goals as they completed the club’s first ever treble of Champions League, La Liga and Copa del Rey.
Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has joked that the club may have to cover the see-through tunnel in their new stadium following media reports of a fracas at Old Trafford following Sunday’s Manchester derby.
British media reported that United manager Jose Mourinho was upset by the behaviour of the City players who threw milk and water at him following the 2-1 Premier League win while Mikel Arteta, a City coach, was reported to have suffered a cut.
Tottenham’s 61, 500 seat stadium plan includes a glass-walled suite similar to that in City’s Etihad stadium that will allow supporters watch players before they step on to the pitch.Do you ever witness anything interesting or exciting? Just take out your phone and send us the exclusive pictures or video and we will pay you cash. E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include location, date, involved persons or why it is important and other details.