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SAFF Championship 2018 Semis – India beat Pakistan to enter final – football news

Stephen Constantine’ Indian U23 team defeated Pakistan 3-1 in the second semi-final of the 2018 SAFF Championship at the Bangabandhu Stadium in Dhaka, Bangladesh on Wednesday.

Manvir Singh (48′ and 69′) scored a brace while birthday boy Sumeet Passi (84′) added in another before the game was reduced to ten-a-side. Hassan Bashir (88′) got a late consolation but India sealed entry to a record eleventh final of the regional tournament.

More to follow…

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Mesut Ozil To Leave Arsenal In SHOCK January Transfer?! | Transfer Talk – Football Daily

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Mohun Bagan president Swapan Sadhan Bose makes sexist remark to hail CFL win – football news

While Mohun Bagan celebrated its 2018 Calcutta Football League (CFL) triumph with a game in hand, club president Swapan Sadhan Bose’s comments during half-time on Wednesday have left a sour taste in the mouth of fans of the club and Indian football alike.

Mohun Bagan already lead 2-0 over Calcutta Customs at the break and the result as it stood meant the Mariners would go onto win their 30th CFL title, their first since 2009.

During the half-time program on broadcaster Sadhna News, the presenter asked Bose how it felt inevitably being the CFL champions after so long, putting an end to arch-rival East Bengal’s monopoly for the last eight seasons.

“Daughters were being born for the last seven years, suddenly a son has been born. How would you like it if that was the case with you? I have the same feeling,” giggled Bose, who is fondly known as ‘Tutu’.

That septuagenarian’s bigoted comments were followed by laughs in agreement by the people who surrounded him and the reporter himself chuckled on the chauvinistic reply to his question out of awkwardness.

While this could be termed as the first recorded case of sexism in Indian football, the administrator’s narrow-mindedness has left fan’s opinions divided while celebrating their team’s win.

Interestingly, Mohun Bagan club members go onto vote to elect their executive committee this month and Bose and his camp are one of the belligerents.

It remains to be seen if his opponents, the Mitra faction, led by Sohini Mitra Chaubey, a woman herself uses this against him.

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Comedy Fouls In Football ● Funny Moments

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‘It has to end’ – Neymar claims ‘lack of respect’ after yellow card for diving – football news

Neymar criticised referee Jair Marrufo after receiving what he felt was an “unnecessary” booking for simulation during his side’s 5-0 win over El Salvador.

The Paris Saint-Germain forward saw yellow just before half-time at FedExField in Washington after failing to convince the official he had been fouled inside the penalty area.

While he did not complain at the time, the Brazil captain aired his views after the friendly fixture, declaring American Marrufo had made an incorrect call in showing a card, rather than his decision not to give a foul.

It is not the first time Neymar’s on-field antics have caused controversy; the 26-year-old was condemned by some for his theatrical behaviour at times during the World Cup earlier this year.

“I do not know what I have to do to live with it [this reputation], there’s no way I’m going to stand for a situation like this. I think it has to end,” he said, according to Globo Esporte .

“But it’s not up to me, so much that I did not say anything, I went on with my football.

“It’s a lack of respect, not just with me, but with my team-mates as well.

“Playing with a yellow card is tricky. The guy comes here to officiate a Brazilian national team match, which is a very big selection, and he does that … I don’t think it is correct. 

“If he does not want to give the penalty, it’s not a problem, but the card is unnecessary.”

Neymar did convert a fourth-minute penalty to put Brazil in front against El Salvador following a foul on debutant Richarlison, who went on to score twice in the rout.

The one-sided result followed on from a 2-0 triumph over the United States as Brazil look to move on following their disappointing campaign in Russia, where they were knocked out by Belgium in the last eight.

“I’m the type of guy that every time I get the ball, I just look forward,” Neymar told the media. “I just look for something, I try to create something, a chance on goal.

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“That’s what I want to pass on to the other players as well. Our team has to play with joy, yes, Tite has said that and I also want to enjoy it, because playing here is difficult.

“To play for the Brazil national team is a dream of every one of us, so we have to show our affection and love for this.”

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Police investigate murder of South African chairman who was gunned down outside club meeting – football news

South African football has been rocked by the murder of Uthongathi FC chairman Nicholas Mkhize, who was gunned down on Monday.

The National First Division (NFD) club boss was shot dead by gunmen after leaving a technical meeting with other club members where they discussed plans for their next league game.

Uthongathi FC spokesperson Nduduzo Maphumulo was devastated by the passing away of Mkhize.

“Things are not really well in our camp and it’s very sad to lose the chairman because he was our pillar of strength,” Maphumulo told Goal.

“He was the man who always encouraged us and we will issue a statement to map out our plans and how we will progress with our week.

“The matter is with the police and we have to allow them to do their job.”

The South African Police Services are still investigating the murder of the football boss, who was also a taxi owner, but no arrests have been made as yet.

Uthongathi Statement

Club director Nkosinathi Chili detailed the events around the chairman’s murder, which saw Mkhize casually chat after the club meeting before getting into his car, where he was shot dead.

“Every Monday at 5 o’clock we do have a technical team report if either we played or we didn’t play over the weekend, to let us know what it is that they are seeing because we had friendly games since it was the FIFA week,” Chili told kickoff.

“It is about their analysis and preparedness for the KZN derby against Real Kings. You know when you play against Real Kings, to us it’s a derby. So after that meeting one of our board members decided to close it with a prayer, and it turned out to be a long, long prayer.

“Afterwards we all left the meeting. Everyone was rushing to his own place because we normally finish at 8:15pm. And when we went out, everyone goes to his car, and there are times when one just stands with someone and talks, and he [Mkhize] was standing with one of our board members.

“After that board member moved to his car, he [Mkhize] moved to his car and when he entered his car, closed the door and was about to start the car, he didn’t start it. Then there was a lot of gun shots.

“They were just monitoring us and they used the chance. Then he was shot dead and he couldn’t move. This is just a fatal death.”

The NFD side were set to play their league match against neighbours Real Kings on Saturday in KwaMashu in a match dubbed as the KwaZulu-Natal derby, but the game has been postponed due to the death of Mkhize.

The side also known as the ‘Cane Cutters’ were crowned ABC Motsepe League champions two seasons ago.

Uthongathi is yet to lose in the NFD this season after three matches. They secured a win over Ubuntu Cape Town, while recording draws with Milano FC and the University of Pretoria.

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CFL 2018: Spirited Mohammedan Sporting end woeful East Bengal’s title hopes – football news

Mohammedan came back from behind to beat East Bengal 2-1 and end their dream of winning the Calcutta Football League (CFL) Premier Division ‘A’ for a record 40th time.

Johnny Acosta’s strike gave East Bengal the lead in the 11th minute of the match. Mohammedan’s Ghanaian striker Philip Adjah scored in the 86th and 97th minute to seal a memorable win for Raghu Nandy’s men.

Although East Bengal mathematically still have a chance to win the league, in reality, they have drifted away from the title race. With Mohun Bagan playing on Wednesday against Calcutta Customs, a win for the Green and Maroons will seal their 30th CFL title.

East Bengal’s poor form continued as Bastob Roy’s men failed to register a win in three consecutive matches. This has been the worst CFL campaign in recent years for the Kolkata giants.

They started the match by dominating proceedings and picking up an early lead. But in the second half, East Bengal were completely outclassed. They could have lost by a bigger margin had the Mohammedan players been a little more efficient in front of the goal.

Questions were raised over East Bengal’s World Cupper defender Johnny Acosta who was once again at fault for Mohammedan’s second goal. Also with Acosta in their side, the team conceded six goals in their last three matches.

Acosta had an average outing in his third appearance for the club. He scored his second goal in the East Bengal jersey but his performance in defence was way below expected standards. He is yet to attain full match fitness and is getting outpaced by opposition attackers quite easily.

But to be fair to Acosta, he is not getting enough full support from his fellow defenders who underperformed heavily. The lack of communication among the defenders was visible which helped Mohammedan notch two late goals.

With just a match to go in CFL, it is evident that Subhash Bhowmick will pack his bags and leave the club, handing over the responsibility to Spanish coach Alejandro Menendez.

The former Real Madrid Castilla coach has a tough job in hand to mould the side and bring in his style before the I-League.

With a new coach and two more foreign recruits joining the club soon, the Red and Golds loyalists will hope that the team will shrug off the CFL blues and come back as a new side in the I-League 2018/19 season.

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‘The best players stay level-headed’ – Gomes wants to fulfil Man Utd dream – football news

Manchester United’s Angel Gomes says he intends to remain level-headed after scoring in front of Jose Mourinho for the club’s under-23 side.

The 18 year-old, who signed his first professional contract in December, registered his third goal of the season against Stoke City’s youngsters at Old Trafford at the end of August in a game watched by the United manager, and now has an eye on adding to the two first-team appearances he made for the club.

“It’s a great club,” Gomes told ESPN FC. “Playing at Old Trafford is the dream. It’s the main aim. As long as I can carry on getting better and impressing, hopefully, in the future, I can get a chance.

“I’ve got to put that [expectation] to one side. The best players get to the top because they have stayed level-headed. I’ve got to carry on working hard and keep putting everything in to training and games.”

Gomes, who is one of the more senior players available to Under-23s boss Ricky Sbragia this season, has come through the ranks of the England youth set-up, and featured as the Under-17s won the World Cup last summer. His father, Gil, represented Portugal at Under-23 level.

In making his United debut against Crystal Palace in May 2017 aged only 16, he became the youngest player to play for the club in more than 60 years, and was included in Mourinho’s squad for the pre-season tour of the US this summer.

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“It was a great experience,” said Gomes. “Just being around the first team, seeing how they train and being able to pick up little things, it’s positive.

“Going on tour was an added bonus for the younger players. Even if you don’t get as many minutes, you’re in the manager’s eyesight and he can see how you train, how you prepare and he can compare you to the first team players. Going to the US was about trying to progress and show him what you’re capable of.”

In 2017, Gomes became the youngest player to score a hat-trick for the club’s academy side’s in 15 years.

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Asensio, Balotelli and the winners and losers of international week – football news


WINNER: MARCUS RASHFORD


Marcus Rashford England 2018-19

Many England players emerged from the World Cup with their reputations enhanced. It must be said that Marcus Rashford wasn’t one of those.

While the country fell in love with the likes of Kieran Trippier and Harry Maguire, Rashford was somewhat on the fringes and did not contribute a lot to the English charge to the semi-finals.

He has however started the new cycle in fine form.

England may have lost against Spain on Saturday in their UEFA Nations League opener but Rashford was bright and busy, scoring the opener and serving a reminder of his capabilities to the onlooking Jose Mourinho.

He was efficient in front of goal on Tuesday as well when England beat Switzerland in a friendly at the King Power Stadium, scoring the only goal of the game.

It’s been a difficult start to the Premier League season for Rashford – and indeed for Manchester United as a whole – but goals in back-to-back games for the first time for his country will do his confidence the world of good.


WINNER: GEORGE WEAH


George Weah

Some 15 years after his retirement, the president of Liberia George Weah made an incredible international comeback in a 2-1 home defeat to Nigeria.

Weah, Africa’s only Ballon d’Or winner, was to be honoured at the game in the Samuel Doe Stadium in Monrovia where his legendary No. 14 shirt was to be retired.

Those in attendance were taken by surprise when Weah – now aged 51 – led the Lone Stars out with the captain’s armband instead of merely watching from the stands.

He lasted an impressive 79 minutes and by all accounts put in quite a shift despite a paunch reflecting his years of good living. James Debbah – one of Weah’s former international team-mates – also played aged 48.

There are repercussions in Nigeria where many are demanding answers on why the NFF agreed to send a senior representative team to play in a glorified friendly.

For the president – elected in a runoff last December – it was a fond farewell on the same night his son Timothy played for the United States against Mexico.


WINNER: RICHARLISON


Richarlison Brazil El Salvador Friendly 11092018

A strong start to the season for new club Everton preceded a first call-up to the Brazil squad for Richarlison, who took Pedro’s place late in the day.

And having been handed the legendary No. 9 shirt by Tite, the £50 million man made quite the impression on his first start for his country.

He won an early penalty against El Salvador in a Stateside friendly – which Neymar converted – before Richarlison stole the show himself in front of goal.

Brazil won 5-0 – to add to their 2-0 win last week over the United States – and Richarlison provided the pick of the bunch.

He scored in either half; the first a curler into the top corner and the second a powerful effort from the edge of the box.

With that performance and those goals, he will have served notice of his abilities to Tite, who is plotting the next stage of Brazil’s cycle after a disappointing World Cup.


WINNER: MARCO ASENSIO


Marco Asensio Spain 2018-19

Long heralded as one of the coming forces in world football, this is expected to be the season Marco Asensio stands among the elites.

He has won two Champions Leagues with Real Madrid but now with Cristiano Ronaldo gone he will step up to become one of the European champions’ key players.

And for his country too, Asensio looks ready to become a superstar.

Spain have won six points from six in their opening Nations League fixtures and on Tuesday night Asensio ran the game against Croatia.

The World Cup semi-finalists were smashed 6-0 by Spain with Asensio providing three assists as well as a stunning long-range strike of his own.


LOSERS: ITALY AND BALOTELLI


Balotelli Italy Poland

This was supposed to mark the start of a new era under Roberto Mancini.

The 2006 World Cup winners failed to qualify for this year’s tournament and so a new regime took over. Italy, however, look scarcely better for swapping Giampiero Ventura for the former Inter manager.

They were lacklustre and out of ideas in a 1-1 draw against Poland before succumbing to a 1-0 loss against Portugal on Sunday. 

Alarmingly, they have won a total of two matches in a year of football – a World Cup qualifier against Albania and a friendly against Saudi Arabia. They are a team bereft of confidence and ability.

One thing they have been lacking is firepower in front of goal. Mario Balotelli being sent back to his club for being a reported 15 kilograms over weight will not have helped the cause and they are already looking at Nations League relegation.


LOSERS: IRELAND AND ROY KEANE


Roy Keane Ireland

Controversy is raging in Ireland with assistant manager Roy Keane predictably at the centre of things.

A leaked WhatsApp voice message from left-back Stephen Ward detailed two extraordinary training camp rows between Keane and Irish internationals Jonathan Walters and Harry Arter. It has led to calls for Keane’s sacking given the manner in which he addressed the players and brought questions about exactly what it is he does in Martin O’Neill’s regime.

That overshadowed things to such an extent that it was easy to forget Ireland were hammered in their opening Nations League fixture against Wales before giving up a late draw away to Poland in a friendly.

The Irish public has simply been turned off the national team given the poor levels of performance in recent games and the lack of anything approaching a shake-up – in the boardroom, the dugout or on the pitch.

The rot has well and truly set in.


LOSERS: ICELAND


Iceland Belgium Nations League

The surprise team of Euro 2016 have long since shed their underdog tag and are struggling with life at a higher level.

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They qualified well for the World Cup but could not get out of their group. Now their failings are being exposed in the Nations League.

They were annihilated 6-0 by Switzerland on matchday one before the boos rang out in Reykjavik on matchday two as Belgium ran riot with a 3-0 victory.

It was their first home defeat since June 2013 and a demoralising one at that given they were in the game until Eden Hazard scored from the penalty spot.

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‘I’m concerned about Kane’ – Neville says Spurs star should have been given England break – football news

Harry Kane should have been given a reprieve by England for their fixtures against Spain in the Nations League and Switzerland in a friendly, Gary Neville has argued.

The former Manchester United and England defender believes that the forward risks mental burnout after three busy years of football, and says that those fixtures would have been the ideal time to given him some respite.

Kane featured in both matches as England went down 2-1 to Spain at Wembley before they edged Switzerland 1-0 in Leicester thanks to a Marcus Rashford goal.

 “I am concerned about Harry Kane. Since 2015 he has played 175 matches and he’s struggling. Forget the physical side, he needs a mental break as well,” Neville told Sky Sports.

“I don’t think he should have been here for the two weeks. I think there is a welfare thing in terms of looking after players. He has not had enough of a break since 2015.”

The 25-year-old was a member of the England World Cup squad that made a run to the semi-finals of Russia 2018, where he won the Golden Boot, and has maintained a prolific record for his club side as they have elevated themselves to the status of Premier League title challengers under Mauricio Pochettino.

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His indispensable status, however, has meant that he has rarely had a chance to break as he has accumulated 106 goals for Spurs since the beginning of the 2015 season, twice earning the Premier League Golden Boot in the process.

This term, he has made his best ever start to a season, finally netting his first Premier League August goals.

On Saturday, he will seek to help Tottenham beat a Liverpool side that has made a perfect start to the season, with Spurs’ own winning streak ended with a shock defeat at Watford prior to the international break.

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