Monday, February 09, 2009

Nigeria’s camp bubble in London as Mikel arrives Camp

Uncharacteristically, Mikel Obi became the first player to hit the Super Eagles Hilton Docklands Hotel lodgings ahead of Wednesday's international friendly against Jamaica.

His arrival appears to mean that the young lad has out ground all the delinquencies of youth and now ready for serious business with the super Eagles as they fight for a ticket to the World Cup in South Africa 2010. The 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship silver medalist arrived at the west London hotel at 12 noon Nigerian time..

The lad has been absent from the squad for a very long time and seems to be missing all the action. He has already missed out in action against Equatorial Guinea in Malabo, against South Africa in Port Elizabeth and against Sierra Leone in Nigeria, as well as the international friendly against Colombia in Bali in November.

Other players like Osaze Odemwingie, Obinna Nsofor, Femi Ajilore and the goalkeeping pair of Austin Ejide and Dele Aiyenugba are now also arriving Camp.

Players invited by coach Amodu include; goalkeepers Vincent Enyeama, Austin Ejide and Dele Aiyenugba; defenders Taye Taiwo, Danny Shittu, Obinna Nwaneri, Joseph Yobo, Onyekachi Apam, Dele Adeleye, Olubayo Adefemi and Chidi Odiah; midfielders Femi Ajilore, Sani Kaita, Mikel Obi, Seyi Olofinjana, Kazeem Ayila, Kalu Uche and Paul Obiefule and; strikers Nwankwo Kanu, Ikechukwu Uche, Joseph Akpala, Mike Eneramo, Osaze Odemwingie and Obinna Nsofor.

Kalu Uche Can’t Stop Scoring

One Nigerian that has taken the Spanish Primera Liga by storm this term is Kalu Uche who scored after just 26 minutes on Sunday as he continued his fine run for Almeria.
However, his goal was not enough to see them through as they lost 3-2 to Malaga despite going two goals up earlier on.

In France, Onyekachi Apam found incredibly found a goal for OGC Nice who went two men down losing at home to league champions Lyon.Taye Taiwo was immense in Olympic Marseilles's 1-0 victory over Bordeaux.

Adebayor Out for 3 weeks

Adebayor has scored 12 goals for Arsenal this season and did so 30 times last season. However, recently he seems to be struggling for form and many fans have attributed it to lack of credible competition upfront.
The team has had to depend too much on Robin van persie who seems to be having a rare Injury free season this term.

The Arsenal hitman, Emmanuel Adebayor has been ruled out of action for three weeks with a hamstring injury suffered in Sunday's 0-0 draw with Tottenham.

He was stretchered off after pulling up in the 35th minute of the north London derby.

Adebayor will now miss league games against Sunderland and Fulham, the FA Cup replay with Cardiff and the Champions League game with Roma all of which are very critical to the North London Club.

It would have been time for regrets and more frustration for fans had they failed to get the signature of Andre Ashavin as they were set to miss out. Good enough, it seems just the right time as Eduardo returns to full fitness despite lacking games. The Croatian international has been invited for his country’s forth coming international friendly and Arsene Wenger thinks it will be good for him to get a few more games under his belt just before a full premiership return.

Croatian striker Eduardo returned to the squad for the first time since breaking his leg almost a year ago, while young Mexican forward Carlos Vela has struggled to force his way into the first team. But Arsene insists he has enough strikers available for the task ahead.

"Adebayor is out for three weeks with a hamstring," Wenger said.

"We have Carlos Vela, we have Nicklas Bendtner, we have Eduardo we have Andrey Arshavin and we have Robin van Persie. We have plenty of strikers.

Can Ashavin step in after all the expectations?

Former Arsenal Captain and Portsmouth Gaffer, Tony Adams Sent Packing

In the last eight games involving Portsmouth, only one has not been a loss. Following Saturdays 2-3 loss to a rampaging Liverpool side Tony Adams has been shown the way out from the Pompey job and rumor has it that Avram Grant, former Chelsea man who took over from Jose Mourinho is being lined up for the job.

A statement released by the club claims it was a "difficult decision", taken after Pompey won just two out of 16 Premier League games since Adams took charge.

Adams said he was surprised to be sacked despite agreeing Pompey hasn’t been having good results since he took over from Redknapp about four months ago.

"Results have not been good, it must be said, but we're not getting done sixes and fours and performances on the whole have been good."

One should only be surprised he was sacked after claims by management, sacking him wasn’t an option.

"In the running is Avram Grant, who was director of football at Fratton Park three years ago, ex-West Ham boss Alan Curbishley.

"Grant is considered to be the favourite."
Prior to the defeat by Liverpool - their seventh loss in eight games - Adams had insisted he had the backing of the club chiefs.

Portsmouth are currently 16th in the table, one point above the relegation zone, with 14 games to play.

The club's statement added: "The owner and the board feel they have been as supportive as they can during a period when results have been poor.

"The priority for the club is to remain in the top flight and we feel the appointment of a new manager will give us the best opportunity to enable us to do this."

Adams was appointed at the end of October when Harry Redknapp, who guided Pompey to FA Cup glory last season, decided to take the Tottenham job.

Portsmouth have put in some terrific performances but they just could not get a win, and individual errors have cost them dearly in several games this season. In all, it seems like management appears to be talking with both sides of their mouths. Who sells his best players and expect to perform well in the league. In January alone, we have seen Diara and Jermaine Defoe sold out to Real Madrid and Tottenham respectively despite bringing in Pennant from Liverpool.

One would have expected that Pennant should have been brought in only to add to the existing legion-Poor Tony.

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