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Europa League: Moses, Hazard Out Of Chelsea – PAOK Clash Over Injury – Complete Sports Nigeria Europa League: Moses, Hazard Out Of Chelsea



Europa League:  Moses, Hazard Out Of Chelsea – PAOK Clash Over Injury


Nigerian winger Victor Moses will play no part in Chelsea’s UEFA Europa League clash against PAOK Salonica at Stamford Bridge due to a back problem, Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has revealed.

Chelsea are already through to the last 32 of the competition, but one point in their last two matches will secure the top spot of Group L and will guarantee the Blues a better seeding for the First Round of knockout stages.

In the reverse fixture, Thessaloniki, Willian scored for The Blues to hand the Blues a 1-0 victory over Paok Salonica.

Sarri Believes Liverpool Can Win Premier League This Season

Moses who has made two appearances in the competition last featured for The Blues in their 1-1 draw at home to Liverpool in October.

The 27-year-old has failed to make Chelsea’s last ten matchday squads.

“The last problem is Moses. I spoke with the doctor and he has a back problem this morning, so I think he will not be able to play tomorrow,” Sarri said during his pre-match conference on Wednesday ahead of his side’s clash against PAOK Salonica at Stamford Bridge on Thursday.

Sarri also ruled out Eden Hazard from the Chelsea’s Europa League match at the Bridge, but he hopes to have the Belgian back for the visit from neighbours, Fulham on Sunday.

“Then Hazard, of course, it is not a serious injury. He will not be able to play tomorrow but I think he will be able to recover for the Premier League match (Fulham).”

The Chelsea manager is also worried about Hazard’s dip in form.

“I am worried that he had a back injury and now ankle, so he has lost a lot of training, so it is normal he is not at the top form of his physical condition. He has one week and a couple of matches,” he said.

“This week it is useful for him to have training. Of course, he cannot play 10 matches in 30 days, so sometimes he has to rest.”

Sarri also recalled that Saturday’s loss to Tottenham Hotspur was down to The Blues’ players’ approach.

“It is difficult to tell me why. Someone told me that the international might have been a problem, to be back 100%. But I don’t know Maybe for Spurs it was easier as the players played in London on Sunday so was all together, but the situation was similar.

“The problem in the last three matches has been the approach in the match. Tottenham are very strong and that makes the problem bigger. They were able to destroy us in 15, and I saw that problem in the game before.”

“I went player by player. I had a meeting of ten minutes individual meetings. We lost the match after three months and a half, we have to understand why and from the mental approach. If you don’t have the determination then maybe you don’t have the character in the mind, I wanted to understand this.

“The target in my mind is very clear, it is to win something and in the long time to become the best team in Europe.”

He also believes N’Golo Kante is versatile enough to play in any role for Chelsea in midfield, but he prefers the French midfielder playing in another position, not in the defensive midfield position.

“As you know I want to play a central midfielder with great technical ability, so Jorginho and Fabregas. I don’t want Kante in this position. Kante tried to solve the match on Saturday but in the wrong way. He tried to be too attacking.

“Maybe it is a question of time. He needs to stay near Jorginho. It depends on the action (Kante getting forward). If the ball is on the left, no. He has to stay very close to Jorginho.

“I think N’Golo Kante can play in every position in midfield. With the manager’s philosophy, with Jorginho and Cesc they are a very important part of the game.

“He can play box-to-box and be a more efficient player carrying the ball, passes between the lines. We know how fast he is.

“He can perforate the lines and it is main strength. It is a new position for him, but maybe he can be more selfish around the box and he can score more goals. He is everywhere and we don’t need to question ourselves about that. We just need to adapt,” the Chelsea boss concluded.


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Buhari appoints Amokachi as SA on sports



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



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



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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