The French Ligue one, Lille Metropole and Super Eagles players have congratulated Victor Osimhen for winning the 2019-2020 Marc Vivien Foe award.

Osimhen was announced as the winner of the prestigious award after finishing on top of the polls ahead of compatriot Simon Moses, Islam Slimani, and others.

 

The award is a reward for Osimhen who scored 18 goals for Lille in 31 appearances last campaign.

 

Ligue one however reached out to the player through their official Twitter account.

 

“A great reward for the Nigerian striker of Lille Oslo @victorosimhen9, the author of 13 goals last season.

 

“🏆 Une belle récompense pour l’attaquant nigérian 🇳🇬 du @losclive, @victorosimhen9, auteur de 13 buts en championnat la saison dernière !”, Ligue one wrote on their official handle.

 

In another separate tweet, Lille also celebrated the feat and wish him the best for the forthcoming season.

 

“Our attacker @victorosimhen9 wins it #PrixMarcVivienFoe 2020 awarded by @RFI and rewarding the best African ligue in 1,” Lille said in a tweet.

 

“Congrats my bro @victorosimhen9 glad you have it more success,👊” Simon Moses wrote in another tweet.

 

Osimhen is the second Nigerian to win the award after Vincent Enyeama.

 

 

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At 15 years and 219 days of age, he broke Sansón’s record by playing against Real Madrid.

When Luka Romero stepped onto the pitch in the 83rd minute of RCD Mallorca’s match away at Real Madrid on Wednesday night, he made history as soon as his studs touched the grass of the Estadio Di Stéfano pitch. At 15 years and 219 days of age, Romero became the very youngest player in the 91-year history of Spain’s top division.

 

The record had previously been held by Francisco Bao Rodríguez, known as Sansón, who played for his hometown club RC Celta against Sevilla back in 1939 at the age of just 15 years and 255 days. Real Sociedad’s Pedro Irastorza and Real Zaragoza’s Óscar Ramón were the only other players to make their LaLiga debuts while still 15, before Romero became the fourth.

 

Romero has come a long way to reach this special and historic moment. He was born to Argentine parents in Durango City, Mexico, where his father Diego was playing professional football. Due to his father’s career, Romero moved around a lot as a kid, moving to Spain and eventually to Formentera, an island a short ferry ride from Mallorca.

 

There, as Romero started playing in attacking midfield with local clubs, he caught many scouts’ attention due to his excellent dribbling ability, his magical left foot and his wild goalscoring numbers. Even Barcelona heard about him, but Romero stayed put and joined RCD Mallorca’s academy in 2015 at the age of 10.

 

He gradually rose up the club’s youth ranks before being invited to train with the first team by coach Vicente Moreno following RCD Mallorca’s return from the coronavirus-enforced pause in action. The 15-year-old really impressed the coach, so much so that Moreno called Romero up for the team’s recent fixtures with Villarreal and Leganés. The teenager didn’t come off the bench in either of those games, but it was third time lucky as he finally did against Real Madrid, the league leaders, this week.

 

As Moreno insisted afterwards, Romero was there playing against Real Madrid’s superstars on merit. As the coach said in his post-match press conference, following Mallorca’s 2-0 loss: “He is just 15 years of age and if we put him out there to play then it was because we believe he deserved to be there. It’s because we believe he is good enough. He’s building up rhythm and getting better in training each day. You’ll soon see what we’re talking about because he is a great player.

 

The player himself was thrilled to make his debut, posting a message on social media after making history on the pitch: “This was an unforgettable moment. Thanks to all of the coaching staff and to RCD Mallorca for giving me this opportunity. I’ll never forget this day. It’s a shame we lost, but we’ll keep on believing.”

 

As Mallorca continue fighting against the threat of relegation during the final weeks of the season, there could be further opportunities for Romero to play. He really is something special and has been dubbed ‘The Mexican Messi’ by some in the media, though his family are uneasy with the nickname because of the pressure it invites. That said, Mallorca’s assistant coach Dani Pendín recently explained in an interview with AS that “Romero is quick, crafty, smart and competitive, like a prototypical Argentine No.10”.

 

Romero has so far chosen to represent Argentina at national level, despite also eligible to play for Mexico and Spain. Currently rising through the Albiceleste’s youth categories, his development is cause for excitement in the South American nation as well as in Mallorca.

 

All those close to him are calling for patience and reminding people that this special talent isn’t even 16 yet. They’re also all genuinely excited for his future. Luka Romero could go on to make LaLiga history in many other ways.

 

 

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Former Manchester United defender  Rio Ferdinand has faulted Wilfred Ndidi for the goal that knocked Leicester City out of the English FA Cup.

Leicester City conceded for the first time in the competition this season as they lost  1-0 loss to Chelsea at the King Power Stadium on Sunday.

 

Substitute Ross Barkley scored the decisive goal after Ndidi failed to closed down the England midfielder quickly.

 

Ferdinand who was speaking from his punditry role with BT Sports said Ndidi saw the danger and should have reacted quicker by picking up Barkley before he volleyed home the winner.

 

“The gap between the centre-backs starts to develop. When that happens, when that big gap comes, the big job is for Ndidi, who has had great reviews for how he’s played over the years, and rightly so.

 

“Once you see the gap between the centre-backs when the ball’s wide, his job is to drop in, drop in here and be that guard in there. If you keep your eye on Ndidi here, and look how many times he looks over his shoulder to see where Barkley is.

 

“One look, two looks – when he looks there – he has to drop in there and cover the run from Barkley. He knows he can get in behind Ndidi because he’s not looking.

 

“Jonny Evans, one of my old team-mates, sees this but he’s marking his man – Tammy Abraham – once he sees it he’ll come over to try and cover. But once this happens at this level, it’s too quick, the quality is too good, it’s a great cross and the timing eliminates defenders out of it.

 

“Barkley sees the space, darts into it, great ball, great finish. Bad defending from Ndidi and the midfield.” He said.

 

This was the first time that Leicester had conceded a goal in this season’s FA Cup, making them the last of the 123 sides to participate in the competition proper in 2019-20 to concede a goal.

 

Leicester have also lost each of their last five quarter-final matches in the FA Cup – with each of the last three being against Chelsea (also 2012 and 2018).

 

 

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Olarenwaju Kayode continued his good form in the Turkish Super Lig as he scored his 10th goal of the season for Gaziantep Gazisehir on Sunday.

The Nigerian forward is in the best form of his career and his goal helped Gaziantep Gazisehir to a 1-1 draw against visiting Antalyaspor at the Gaziantep Stadium.

 

After a goalless first half, Kayode gave his side the lead six minutes after the interval with a scrumptious strike that left the goalkeeper stranded.

 

However, Gazisehir Gaziantep were pegged back when in form Adis Jahovic hit the leveler for Antalyaspor with two minutes left in the game.

 

The draw means Gazisehir Gaziantep missed the opportunity to go above their guests on the league standing, they remain 10th, two points behind Antalyaspor.

 

Meanwhile, Kayode Olarenwaju who is on loan from Shakhtar Donetsk is Gazisehir Gaziantep leading scorer in this campaign with ten goals and six assists.

 

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The Ghanaian midfielder has become a key cog in the Atlético de Madrid side under Diego Simeone.

  1. He left Ghana without most of his family knowing

When the time came for Thomas to make the move from Ghana to Spain, he left very suddenly. His father was a football coach and, together with Thomas’ agent, had been planning his exit from Ghanaian second division side Tema Youth. One day Thomas was driven to the Ghanaian capital of Accra, handed his passport and told he’d be leaving there and then. The rest of his family found out once Thomas was already in Spain, where he signed with Atlético de Madrid!

 

  1. Michael Essien was his idol

When Thomas was starting out on his journey to professional football, the player he looked up to the most was Michael Essien. Thomas has spoken about the admiration he had for his fellow Ghanaian, while former Real Madrid midfielder Essien has also raved about Thomas’ qualities in various interviews, even saying that he’d have loved if the two midfielders could have played together for the Black Stars.

 

  1. He’s one of the most versatile players in European football

Some fans might not know just how versatile a player Thomas is. His natural position is in defensive midfield, but he has also been used on occasion as an attacking midfielder, as a winger, as a centre-back, as a full-back and even as a striker. When playing for Ghana, he tends to play in a more attacking role and even scored a hat-trick for his country in a World Cup qualifier against Congo.

 

  1. His nickname as a kid was ‘Senegal’

He may be from Ghana, but Thomas’s nickname growing up was “Senegal.” When playing for his father’s team in Odumase Krobo (in eastern Ghana), he was given the nickname because his style of play reminded his father of a friend whose name was Senegal.

 

  1. He co-owns a football club

A star for one Madrid club, he co-owns another. Thomas, along with several partners, acquired Alcobendas Sport, a side in the city’s northern suburbs currently playing in the fourth tier, in 2019. The side has become a home for several players making their own journey from African to Spanish football, with these up-and-coming talents able to benefit from Thomas’ expertise.

 

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Nigerian and Lille forward Victor Osimhen capped an impressive Ligue 1 debut by winning the annual Marc Vivien Foe award in France.

The Nigeria international saw off competition from compatriot Moses Simon (Nantes), Saint-Etienne’s Denis Bouanga, Montpellier’s Andy Delort, Monaco’s Islam Slimani plus Rennes’ trio of Mbaye Niang, Hamari Traore and Edouard Mendy.

 

 

Osimhen ended the Ligue 1 season with 18 goals and six assists in 38 appearances across all competitions – a feat that earned him Lille’s player of the season award.

 

The 21-year-old is now the second Nigerian after Vincent Enyeama (2014) to claim the individual honour since inception in 2009.

 

 

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Former Nigeria international, Victor Moses came off the bench to help Inter Milan keep their Serie A dream alive with a win against Parma.

The Chelsea’s on-loan winger was dropped to the bench as Antonio Candreva got the nod from coach Antonio Conte to start the game at the Stadio Ennio Tardini Stadium.

 

Parma opened the scoring in the 15th minute through Ivorian striker Gervinho. The former Arsenal forward connected perfectly with a cross-field pass and they cut inside Candreva before firing to the right bottom corner.

 

Romelu Lukaku went close to drawing the Nerazzurri level in the 34th minute after he was played through on goal but he couldn’t keep his effort down.

 

Inter continued to dominate possession as they search for an equalizer, but they struggled to create meaningful chances.

 

Conte however responded and sent Victor Moses to the pitch to replace Antonio Candreva in the 69th minute.

 

Moses brought pace and dynamism into the Inter attack from the right-hand side and with eight minutes left on the clock Stefan de Vrij headed in the equalizer.

 

Inter Milan were not done yet, they pressed for the winner and the goal arrived late from an unlikely source as Alessandro Bastoni headed in a Victor Moses’ perfect cross.

 

The win takes Inter Milan up to third position in the table but are still eight points behind leaders Juventus and four points behind second-placed Lazio who also came from behind to beat Fiorentina at the Stadio Olimpico.

 

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Super Eagles winger Samuel Chukwueze was at his best once again as he produced a performance for Villarreal against Valencia on Sunday.

Chukwueze was handed a place in the starting line up by Coach Javier Calleja and the Nigerian was joined by Paco Alcacer and Gerrard Moreno in the attack.

 

Although Chukwueze didn’t get on the score sheet, he had a wonderful game as Villarreal recorded 2 – 0 win over Los Che at the Estadio de la Ceramica.

 

Villarreal took the lead in the 14th minutes through Pace Alcacer in the 14th minutes, Gerrard Moreno doubled their lead with a minute left to play in the first half.

 

Chuckweze helped his team maintain their lead as he worked tirelessly on the right closing down Valencia’s attackers.

 

The Nigerian flash lasted for 88 minutes and was applauded by his coach for contributions as he was coming off.

 

Chukwueze’s game by number :

6/8 (75%) duels won

70 touches

3 Key Passes

52/55 acc. Passes (95%)

3/5 acc. Dribbles (60%)

7.4 rating.

 

 

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Former national team player Justice Christopher has stated that Nigeria has the players to make any coach succeed in the national team and has such had charged the national team handler to get his mix right to achieve this.

Christopher speaking in a chat with brila.net said Nigeria is blessed with enough talent home and abroad doing well where he can draw from even at a time like this where the world is ravaged with Coronavirus with the Nigerian players abroad still doing well for clubs and leagues where football has returned in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Apart from the Coronavirus that is ravaging the world, we have the nations cup that is coming soonest, he has a contract until sometime, we have a lot of players even in Nigeria and abroad. He has every opportunity for him to succeed as a coach in Nigeria.
“He has every opportunity to succeed in the national team. He has every avenue for him to sit down and the problem is for him to trust the players.”

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President of the Nigerian players union Tijani Babangida has stated that the body is ready to push the application of Nigerian players to FIFA and world players union Fifpro to be considered for FIFA’s  Fund for Football Players who are been owed by clubs who go out of business and clubs that avoided paying wages of players before reforming.

Babangida speaking in a chat with www.brila.net said they have since contacted club captains to forward names of players who are owed within the time frame and the clubs they played for to toward same after compilation through the Nigerian players union to FIFA and world players union FIFpro.
“About the intervention fund, it’s between 2015 to date. They asked the union to combine names and clubs so that they can be able to send for them and then they can see it.
“Well, it’s surprising when they called me and told us that FIFA is asking us to write but we already communicated with most of the captains to come ahead and bring names of players that are owed and clubs.
“I think we get already from Taraba who said they were owed in 2015. So all these names we are going to gather and send to FIFA and FIFpro at the same time.”

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