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EPL: Dimitar Berbatov hands Man United name of player to sign this summer

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EPL: Dimitar Berbatov hands Man United name of player to sign this summer

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Former Manchester United striker, Dimitar Berbatov, has advised the club’s manager to sign Ajax defender, Matthijs de Ligt, this summer transfer window.

Berbatov, who scored 56 goals in 149 appearances for Man United during his time at Old Trafford, said this ahead of the club’s Premier League clash with Chelsea on Sunday.

The ex-Bulgaria international believes De Ligt is the right player to solve Man United’s struggles at the defense.

“Ole needs a centre-back who can control the ball, pass into midfield and not be intimidated — just like [Virgil] Van Dijk,” Berbatov told The Sun.

“If I am a striker with Van Dijk in my team, I know it will be OK. They need someone like that.

“For a player so young, De Ligt’s performances are incredible.

Berbatov added: “He’s mature, comfortable on the ball, and he is not bothered who he plays against — Ronaldo or whoever. He doesn’t care, he just plays his own game.

“He moves with grace and doesn’t panic on the ball. He has everything you want from a defender.

“That guy will be an unbelievable player. He’s a great talent and I hope United go for him in the summer and get him.”

De Ligt is currently considered one of the best young defenders in the world.

The 19-year-old scored the decisive goal for Ajax against Juventus in the Champions League quarter-final second leg encounter few weeks ago.

The centre-back will hope to lead Ajax to victory when they tackle Tottenham in the Champions League semi-final fixture next week.



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Buhari appoints Amokachi as SA on sports

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Buhari appoints Amokachi as SA on sports

Former Super Eagles player and Nigerian Football Ambassador, Daniel Amokachi, has been appointed as Special Assistant on Sports to President Muhammadu Buhari.

“I am pleased to inform you that Muhammadu Buhari, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has approved your appointment as Special Assistant on Sports,” the appointment letter dated August 17, 2020, and signed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation Mr. Boss Mustapha, reads in part.

As special assistant on sports, Amokachi is expected to advise the President on all sports matters.

The former Everton of England forward, who was earlier in the year named Nigeria’s Football Ambassador, is expected to mentor youngsters and promote the game at the grassroots.

Nicknamed “The Bull”, Amokachi began his career in Kaduna with Ranchers Bees Football Club of Kaduna, played for Club Brugge of Belgium, Besiktas of Turkey, Everton of England and Colorado Rapids.

He played in two World Cup finals, USA 1994 and France 1998. He was a member of Nigeria’s 1994 African Cup of Nations winning team and won the 2013 edition in South Africa as assistant to the late Coach Stephen Keshi.

Amockachi also won Gold with team Nigeria in the Football event of the Atlanta 1996 Olympics.

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Tennis: Djokovic confirms US Open participation

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Tennis: Djokovic confirms US Open participation

Novak Djokovic confirmed on Thursday he will play at the US Open, ending speculation about his presence at the first Grand Slam tournament since the season restarted following the coronavirus-enforced shutdown.

“I’m happy to confirm that I’ll participate at #CincyTennis and #USOpen this year,” the 33-year-old world number one tweeted.

“It was not an easy decision to make with all the obstacles and challenges on many sides, but the prospect of competing again makes me really excited,” added the 17-time Grand Slam champion.

The US Open gets underway behind closed doors in New York on Monday August 31, with Djokovic arriving in the United States on Saturday to tune up in the Western and Southern Open, which is normally played in Cincinnati but has been moved to New York this year.

His decision to take part is a major boost for the US Open after a host of headline names pulled out.

Djokovic makes his competitive return after being heavily criticized for hosting a charity tennis event in the Balkans in June at which he and a raft of players tested positive for COVID-19.

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Sam Okwaraji: NFF begins process to retire Eagles No.6 jersey

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Sam Okwaraji: NFF begins process to retire Eagles No.6 jersey

The Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) is pondering a move to retire the Super Eagles No.6 jersey previously worn by the late Sam Okwaraji, The PUNCH reports.

NFF President Amaju Pinnick made this known during an interview on a radio programme Sports Salsa, which was aired on Kennis 104.1 FM on Wednesday.

Okwaraji died of congestive heart failure minutes after he slumped during a 1990 World Cup qualifier between Nigeria and Angola on August 12, 1989, inside the main-bowl of the National Stadium, Lagos.

The game ended 1-0 in favour of the Eagles.

“Someone made a proposal about retiring the jersey (No.6) at the start of the year and I think it is not too much for us to do that,” Pinnick said.

“I will forward the proposal to the executive committee for implementation because it has been said already. So, we will see how we can retire that shirt in honour of a great patriot (Samuel) Okwaraji.

“His (Okwaraji) death was very tragic because he was a player who showed dexterity, professionalism and maturity each time he played for the Eagles.”

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