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Mikel, Musa in Nigeria’s AFCON preliminary list

Rohr has kept faith with the players who earned a ticket to the AFCON finals with a match to spare.

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Mikel, Musa in Nigeria’s AFCON preliminary list
Nigeria's German coach Gernot Rohr.(Photo by Giuseppe CACACE / AFP)

Nigeria coach, Gernot Rohr has listed captain John Mikel Obi, Ahmed Musa and defenders, Kenneth Omeruo and Abdullahi Shehu in a 25-man squad to prepare for the 32nd Africa Cup of Nations finals in Egypt with six other players on standby.

Mikel Obi captained the team at the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals in Russia last year, but has not been with the group since Nigeria’s elimination from the finals after defeat to Argentina.

A recent meeting with the national team Coach in the United Kingdom sealed his return to the three–time African champions, with the possibility of adding to his 85 international caps.

Rohr has kept faith with the players who earned a ticket to the AFCON finals with a match to spare, with goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, defenders Leon Balogun and William Ekong, midfielders Oghenekaro Etebo and Wilfred Ndidi and forwards Odion Ighalo, Alex Iwobi and Moses Simon also on the list.

Nigeria play Burundi, Guinea and Madagascar in Group B of the Africa Cup of Nations taking place in Egypt.

Super eagles preliminary list

Goalkeepers:

  • Francis Uzoho
  • Ikechukwu Ezenwa
  • Daniel Akpeyi

Defenders:

  • Olaoluwa Aina
  • Abdullahi Shehu
  • Chidozie Awaziem
  • William Ekong
  • Leon Balogun
  • Kenneth Omeruo
  • Jamilu Collins
  • Semi Ajayi

Midfielders:

  • Mikel John Obi
  • Wilfred Ndidi
  • Oghenekaro Etebo
  • John Ogu

Forwards:

  • Ahmed Musa
  • Victor Osimhen
  • Moses Simon
  • Henry Onyekuru
  • Odion Ighalo
  • Alexander Iwobi
  • Samuel Kalu
  • Paul Onuachu
  • Kelechi Iheanacho
  • Samuel Chukwueze
  • Odion Ighalo
  • Alexander Iwobi
  • Samuel Kalu
  • Paul Onuachu
  • Kelechi Iheanacho
  • Samuel Chukwueze

Standby:

  • Theophilus Afelokhai
  • Bryan Idowu
  • Ikouwem Utin
  • Mikel Agu
  • Junior Ajayi
  • Valentine Ozornwafor.

Sports

Ghana’s Asamoah Gyan reverses retirement decision

Gyan is Ghana’s all-time leading goalscorer with 51 goals in 106 appearances for the national team

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Ghana's Asamoah Gyan reverses retirement decision

Ghana’s national team captain, Asamoah Gyan on Wednesday reversed his decision to retire from international football, just weeks before the African Cup of Nations.

The striker said Monday he was quitting the national team after he was angered by coach Kwasi Appiah’s plan to strip him of the captaincy for next month’s finals in Egypt. 

But President Nana Akufo-Addo intervened on Tuesday by telephoning the Turkey-based player, urging him to make himself available for selection.

Gyan in a statement said he has accepted the president’s request, and was ready for the tournament.

“A presidential request is one that cannot be disregarded… I have taken the request of His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in good faith, and will make myself available for selection by coach Kwasi Appiah,” the 33-year-old forward said in a statement. 

“My desire to help Ghana end the over three-decade long wait to annex the AFCON trophy still burns strong, and I remain committed to serving this great nation and the people of Ghana,” he added.

The tournament, expanded to 24 teams for the first time, kicks off on June 21.

The Black Stars are in Group F with defending champions Cameroon, Benin and Guinea-Bissau.

Gyan made his international debut at the age of 17 against Somalia in 2003.

He is Ghana’s all-time leading goalscorer with 51 goals in 106 appearances for the national team.

He has also featured at three World Cups, in 2006, 2010 and 2014.

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East Africa

Sevilla arrive Tanzania ahead of friendly with Simba

Sevilla will face newly crowned Tanzanian league champions, Simba on Thursday in a friendly match.

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Sevilla arrive Tanzania ahead of friendly with Simba

Hundreds of fans and media thronged the Julius Nyerere International Airport as Sevilla FC arrived Tanzania ahead of their season-ending East African tour.

They are the first Spanish top flight side to visit East Africa, one year after Atletico Madrid ’s planned trip to Kenya was aborted due to lack of a suitable stadium.

Sevilla will face newly crowned Tanzanian league champions, Simba on Thursday in a friendly match. Manager, Joaquin Caparros named an 18-man squad which includes Jesus Navas, Quincy Primes, Munir, and Wissam Ben Yedder.

According to SportPesa director of Administration and Compliance, Tarimba Abbas, the eagerly awaited clash will kick off at 7pm local time on the 23rd of May at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam.

“Sevilla’s tour will, among other things, help tourists and investors discover the uniqueness of Tanzania as a travel and business destination.” – Tarimba Abbas

“We invite top teams from Europe and other parts of the world to promote tourism and ensure that young footballers get the opportunity to train and learn from the very best,” he added.

While in the country, Sevilla officials will also conduct a coaching clinic for young players at the Uhuru National Stadium.

The objective is to pass on football tips to local young talents, according to Abbas.

The match and coaching clinics are part of the La Liga World Challenge powered by SportPesa, which sponsors the country’s football heavyweights, Simba and Young Africans.

According to Tanzania Football Federation competition director, Salum Madadi, FIFA badged referee Herry Sasii will handle Thursday’s match between Simba and Sevilla.

He will be assisted by Mohammed Mkono from Tanga and Soud Lila of Dar es Salaam.

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Sports

Algeria reveals AFCON plans

The team will depart the Middle East for Cairo to begin their Nations Cup journey.

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Image Credit: The Algerian Football Federation (FAF)

The Fennecs of Algeria have revealed their extensive Africa Cup of Nations preparation programme.

The Algerian Football Federation has confirmed that the programme, will be split into two parts. The first will start with a five-day camp that will run from June 3 to June 8 at the National Technical Center. 

The North Africans will then depart for Doha, for the second part of their Afcon preparation where they will face Burundi in a friendly match on June 11 before playing Mali on June 16.

The team will depart the Middle East for Cairo to begin their Nations Cup journey.

Algeria are drawn in Group C and will face Kenya, Senegal and Tanzania.

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