Nigeria edges past Zambia in World Cup qualifier
The Gernot Rohr kicked off his World Cup qualification with an impressive win, as Nigeria defeated Zambia at home on Sunday.
The Super Eagles gave an outstanding display at Levy Mwanawasa stadium, as they sealed a 2-1 win courtesy of first half goals from wonder boys Alex Iwobi and Kelechi Iheanacho.
Alex Iwobi, scored the opener and his first international goal in the 35th minute, after capitalizing on Zambia’s defensive error.
Manchester City’s Kelechi Iheanacho scored the second goal, which had fans screaming from the stands. An assist from Brown Ideye, saw him dribble past three Zambia defenders, to score Nigeria’s second goal.
Zambia got their consolation goal in the 71st minute. Mbesuma was quick to capitalize on an error made by Kenneth Omeruo, thereby reducing the deficit.
Nigeria will play against Algeria at home, in their second game on November 7, 2016 while Zambia will have to secure a win or at least a draw against Cameroon to keep their World Cup hopes alive.
Ramos suffers injury during Spain clash
Real Madrid have suffered another injury. Centre-back Sergio Ramos will be forced to the sidelines for an undisclosed time, after picking up an injury during Spain 2-0 win over Albania.
Spain coach Julen Lopetegui played down the injury after the match, while speaking to reporters after the match.
“Sergio Ramos’ injury seems to be a sprain, let’s hope it is nothing too serious,”
The injury, should it be confirmed to be serious, will be big blow for Zinedine Zidane’s side, who already have Marcelo, Casemiro and Luka Modric injured as well.
Ramos though, didn’t seem bothered by the possibility of being ruled out for a month, as he shared a tweet congratulating his teammates after the win.
Pique announces retirement after sleeve fiasco
Gerald Pique has revealed that after Russia 2018 World Cup, he will be retiring from international football.
This was prompted by heavy criticism directed his way during the match against Albania. Fans accused the Barcelona star for cutting the sleeves of his jersey, in other to show off the Spanish flag on the shirt he wore beneath his jersey. It turns out that he did because he confessed to doing so after the match.
The 29-year old is no stranger to criticism but says this is the final and straw, as he announced his retirement date.
“I’ve tried everything but I cannot take any more,” he said in a statement released by the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF).
“Today with the sleeves is the straw that breaks the camel’s back. They’ve made it so I’ve lost the excitement of coming here, and although after Russia I’ll only be 31, I’ll leave.”
The RFEF also communicated their support for the centre-back.
“The Royal Spanish Football Federation wants to show their support for the Spanish international Gerard Pique regarding the controversy caused by the cutting of long sleeves of his shirt in the match played against Albania,” a statement read.
“Contrary to what was indicated by some malicious comments – that the player cut his sleeves to avoid wearing a top with the national colours – the RFEF wishes to clarify that this trimming only exists in the Adidas short-sleeve shirt, and not in the long sleeves, which is what Pique wore in the match.
“This lack of trimming can be seen on the shirt of his partner, Sergio Ramos, who also worse long sleeves. The player cut his sleeves with the sole purpose of playing more comfortably, like other internationals have done on many occasions. Unfair criticism of Gerard Pique has caused him to declare that he will leave the Spanish team after the World Cup in Russia.”
Written by Doyinsola Olaniyan