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OSIMHEN IS ONE OF THE BEST IN THE WORLD; MAY LEAVE NAPOLI FOR HEAVY MONEY CLUBS – IGHALO

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Super Eagles’ striker, Odion Ighalo in an interview with Omasports has revealed that he is not shocked that Osimhen is wrecking defenders in the Italian Serie A.

“One thing I know in life is if you put God first, you work hard and you’re humble, you already have everything. I see him doing that and I know the sky is the limit for him. He is doing well and I am not surprised because he’s a good kid and he’s a fighter.” he said.

The former Manchester United forward, also argued that Osimhen is currently one of the best strikers in the business at the moment; scoring goals for fun.

“He can score goals, he can run, he can defend, he can do everything. For me, he is one of the best strikers in Africa now if not the world because he is scoring goes week in week out, and he is a young boy.” Says Ighalo.

“You won’t be surprised if not this January, maybe in the summer, a big team will take him away from Napoli because he deserves it. It’s football and they will get their money right? Everything has a price tag.” he added.

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FRENCH FOOTBALLER GETS 30-YEAR BAN FOR PUNCHING REFEREE

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An amateur footballer in France, described as a “fanatic”, was on Friday banned from playing for 30 years for punching a referee.

“The penalty is appropriate. These fanatics must not be able to set foot on a football pitch again. They have no place there,” said Benoit Laine, president of the Loiret football district in central France.

The 25-year-old player, who was not named by officials, was angry at being sent off while featuring for Entente Sportive Gatinaise in a local cup game on January 8.Related News

He punched the referee so hard that the official was signed off work for two days.

The team was also kicked out of the tournament for the next two seasons.

AFP

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REASON ARSENAL ARE WINNING – GUARDIOLA

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Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola believes Premier League leaders Arsenal are benefitting from the patience showed to Mikel Arteta in his early years in charge of the Gunners.

Arteta worked as Guardiola’s assistant at City for three-and-a-half years before taking his first senior managerial role at the Emirates in 2019.

The Spaniard had immediate success in winning the 2020 FA Cup, but failed to break into the Premier League’s top four in any of his first three seasons.

Now Arsenal are well on course to end a 19-year wait to win a league title as they lead City by five points and have a game in hand on Guardiola’s men.

The two sides face off for the first of three meetings in the coming months in the FA Cup fourth round on Friday.

“I had the feeling. We knew it when he was here,” said Guardiola on Arteta’s coaching ability.

“The biggest compliment for Arsenal as well is for backing him in the bad moments and trusting him, and keeping him and relying on him.

“At the end, you need time, you need investment and the results are there. It is a challenge for us to challenge them.”

During Guardiola’s reign in Manchester, City dominated English football, winning four Premier League titles among nine major trophies.

But he has tried to light a fire under his players in recent weeks to revive the hunger that has brought so much success.

Guardiola has even used Arsenal’s desire during the first half of the season as an example for his side to match.

“A team with 50 points in one leg (half of the season) is the best. We have to prove how far away or how close we are,” added Guardiola on Friday’s cup clash.

“I encourage them to look themselves. When they are not happy for many reasons, the only way is to perform better.

“Think in the past is the past. What happened in the past is the past. We get the salary for what we will do in the future. Extend the contract, what we’re going to do in the future. The past is done.”

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UZOHO RATED NIGERIA’S BEST KEEPER IN EUROPE

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Super Eagles goalkeeper, Francis Uzoho, is currently Nigeria’s best shot-stopper in Europe this season, according to statistics website Tranfermarkt.

The Nigerian has kept more clean sheets than any of his compatriots in Europe this season.

The in-form Omonia Nicosia goalkeeper has kept eight clean sheets in 15 games, conceding 14 goals so far this term – the best return so far among the top Nigerian goalkeepers in Europe.

The 24-year-old’s contract with Omonia ends at the end of this season, with the player open to a potential exit amid reports Ligue 1 club Stade Reims interested in his services.

Hapoel Jerusalem goalkeeper Adebayo Adeleye is the second-rated Nigerian keeper in Europe after keeping six clean sheets in 15 games this season, conceding 16 goals, while Sebastien Osigwe is third in the ranking, having kept two clean sheets from three games so far this term for Lugano.

Maduka Okoye is ranked fourth as he is yet to keep a clean sheet for Watford after two games this term.

Okoye has fallen out of favour for both club and country. For the Eagles, he is behind Uzoho in the pecking order and in Watford, the 23-year-old has struggled for minutes finding the more experienced Austria international Daniel Bachmann more favoured by the Hornets backroom.

Okoye, who is open to a move away from Vicarage Road, has also been linked with a return to the Dutch Eredivisie.

“We’ll see what happens. My contract runs until 2027, so anything is possible. Maybe I will be rented out, or not, I don’t know yet,” Okoye told Voetbal Primeur.

“The Eredivisie? Yes, that sounds like something to me. The clubs in the Netherlands know me well from Sparta and know what they can do with me. We’ll see. For now, I’m just focusing completely on Watford and the games we’re going to play.”

Meanwhile, Eagles goalkeeper trainer, Ike Shorunmu, is pleased with the form of the goalies in Europe and has urged them not to take their foot off the burner.

“The goalkeepers are doing well and I can only say that this form will make competition for places in the Eagles more competitive when they stay in form. The AFCON qualifiers are around the corner and I hope they maintain this form,” Shorunmu said.

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