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AFCON: Create more scoring chances, Akanni tells Eagles’ midfielders

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Waidi Akanni, an ex-international, on Thursday urged the Super Eagles midfielders to create more scoring chances at the ongoing 2019 Egypt Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) to enable the strikers to score more goals.

Akanni, who gave the advice said that he was impressed with the team’s performance in the continental football tournament.

Super Eagles won their first match against Burundi with a 1-0 score line and subsequently won their match against the Syli Stars of Guinea with a similar scoreline.

“I’m impressed but I want more scoring opportunities that will give me and a lot of Nigerians more confidence.

“The midfield is the engine room of the strikers and I need them to do more. They need to intensify their efforts and create more scoring chances.

“We need to ensure that we keep playing cohesively in order to sustain the winning momentum,’’ the former midfielder said.

With the six points garnered from the two matches played so far in the AFCON, the Super Eagles have already qualified for the next round of the tournament.

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Nigeria’s will trade tackles with The Barea of Madagascar in the last Group B match at the Alexandria Stadium on June 30.

The former Chairman of the Lagos State Football Association, also urged the players to continue to take the proceedings at the tournament one-game at a time in order not to lose focus.

“Taking each game at a time will help us focus on our game. We should be focused and shun distractions.

“Also the team should watch video clips of their next opponent so that they will have a depth of their opponent’s playing pattern,” Akanni said.

Kenneth Omeruo, scored the vital winning goal in the 73rd minute of the keenly contested match and also won the CAF man-of-the-match award.

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Santi Cazorla reacts as Arsenal defeats Chelsea to win FA Cup

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Former Arsenal midfielder, Santi Cazorla has congratulated the Gunners for winning this year’s FA Cup final.

Arsenal beat London rivals Chelsea 2-1 at an empty Wembley Stadium on Saturday to lift the FA Cup.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was the star of the show with two goals, cancelling out Christian Pulisic’s opener for Frank Lampard’s side.

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Cazorla took to their official Instagram handle on Sunday, to hail Arsenal’s achievement.

“Well done boys, one more for all of you,” Cazorla posted alongside a picture of Arsenal squad including the club coaches celebrating.

Cazorla and Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta were former teammates at Arsenal.

The 35-year-old played his last game for Villarreal last month.

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Lewis Hamilton wins British Grand Prix despite puncture on final lap

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Lewis Hamilton has won the British Grand Prix for the seventh time in his career but endured a nervy end to the race at Silverstone after his car suffered a puncture on the final lap.

Hamilton’s Mercedes limped across the finish line with a puncture to the front left tyre, while Max Verstappen, who finished second and was forced to pit for the fastest lap of the race, did not have enough time to close the gap.

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Hamilton had been having a smooth race despite two other Mercedes drivers experiencing punctured tyres, until he too suffered a puncture, this time heading down the back straight towards Brooklands.

Then it was a question of whether he could finish the remainder of the lap – more than half of it – before Verstappen caught him.

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Hamilton speaking to reporters after the win said in relief: “That was close.”

“Up until the last lap, everything was relatively smooth sailing.

“The tyres felt great. Valtteri was really pushing incredibly hard and I was doing some management of that tyre and he looked like he wasn’t doing any.

See photos below:

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Australia’s Kyrgios withdraws from U.S. Open

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Australia’s Nick Kyrgios has withdrawn from the U.S. Open and again criticised some of his fellow professionals for their decisions to ignore health advice during the coronavirus pandemic.

Kyrgios follows compatriot and women’s world number one Ash Barty, who withdrew from the Aug. 31-Sept. 13 tournament earlier this week.

“I will not be playing this year at the U.S. Open,” Kyrgios said in a video on social media on Sunday.

“It hurts me at my core not to be out there competing in one of the sport’s greatest arenas, Arthur Ashe Stadium.

“But I’m sitting out for the people, for my Aussies, for the hundreds and thousands of Americans that have lost their lives, for all of you. It’s my decision.”

Kyrgios had no problems with the USTA scheduling the tournament or players competing if they chose, “so long as everyone acts appropriately and acts safely”.

The 25-year-old said he recognised that lower-wage employees at the event, such as restaurant staff, cleaners and locker room attendants, needed the tournament to take place.

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The world number 40, however, also took another shot at some of his fellow players, with whom he has been involved in a running battle over the last two months after they chose to play in a Novak Djokovic-organised exhibition event in Europe.

Djokovic, Borna Coric, Grigor Dimitrov and Victor Troicki all tested positive for COVID-19 during the event, which was hastily cancelled.

“Tennis players, you have to act in the interest of each other and work together,” Kyrgios added.

“You can’t be dancing on tables, money grabbing your way around Europe or trying to make a quick buck hosting an exhibition. That’s just so selfish.

“Think of the other people for once, that is what this virus is about.”

 

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Reuters

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