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Ban: I have done no wrong, Siasia appeals to FIFA, CAS

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Former Super Eagles’ Chief Coach Samson Siasia on Wednesday in Abuja said he has appealed against the life ban slammed on him by world football governing body FIFA.

Siasia told newsmen that his lawyers filed the appeal to FIFA on Aug. 27, while another appeal was filed with the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) on Aug. 29.

He denied any involvement in any illegal act, such as match-fixing, saying he was well aware they are contrary to the ethics of the football sport.

“I wish to state that I have never been and would never be a party to any form of unethical conduct or perversion in the discharge of my duties in any capacity.

“I built my career in the football industry on the foundation of hard work, integrity, consistency and God.

“In all my career, I have done nothing but serve my country and clubs to the best of my personal and professional ability, with all my strength and might, with discipline, pride and passion and an awareness that it is a privilege to be an ambassador of our great nation.

“It is my greatest hope and belief that my country also stands by and with me at a time like this,” the former Super Eagles forward said.

The former player of French side Nantes and KSC Lokeren in Belgium said the entire proceedings and decision were only brought to his notice on Aug. 16.

“That was when the news broke in the public domain and friends and family started to call. I was totally unaware of the proceedings until I heard about FIFA’s decision.

“While I may not be able to publicly divulge the details and specifics, of the appeal, I think it fit to inform you that I have appealed against FIFA’s Decision and you all will probably hear the results as you heard about the ban.

“I am currently taking legal advice. My lawyer, Austin Otah, has been liaising with the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and its counsel,” he said.

Siasia who also played for Nigeria at the youth level then expressed his gratitude to all Nigerians.

“I thank everyone who has supported me in one way or the other. I must state that this is the most trying period of my life.

“I am still dealing with the pains and challenges of my mother being kidnapped again and fighting to secure her release.

“I urge the nation to support me with prayers, goodwill and support of all kind. The demands are very heavy,” he said, struggling to control a surge of emotions.

Otah also reacted on the appeal.

“We have actually assisted Siasia to file his appeal and we are awaiting FIFA to acknowledge the receipt of the appeal. We are awaiting feedback from FIFA and CAS.

“The FIFA decision requires Siasia to appeal to CAS. We are exploring an internal appeal mechanism, and this will exceptionally be with the Appeal Committee of FIFA.

“But, that notwithstanding, we are still to ensure that his appeal rights are not impeded in anyway”, Otah disclosed.

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SPORTS

Nigeria Para-lifters federation president, Uboh, resigns

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Queen Uboh-Idris

Mrs. Queen Uboh-Idris has resigned from her position as the President of the Nigerian Para-Powerlifting Federation.

Uboh-Idris resigned after successfully hosting the Abuja 2020 Para-Powerlifting World championship.

Uboh-Idris announced her resignation to a bewildered audience at the closing ceremony/dinner held in honour of athletes and officials of the just concluded Para Powerlifting World Cup at the International Conference Center in Abuja on Friday night.

Efforts by journalists to speak to the President on the reasons behind her resignation were unsuccessful as officials of the body and overzealous friends denied access to her.

Uboh-Idris has been embroiled in controversies prior to the World Championship, with one of them being when she was quoted to have raised alarm over Team Nigeria missing out of attending a tournament that is being hosted in Nigeria.

She was rumored to be at loggerheads with the decision of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development who approved thirty athletes against the sixty athletes she favored to participate at the just concluded Para Powerlifting event.

However, She promised to issue a statement at a later date, to explain the reasons for action.

The seven-day Abuja 2020 Para-Powerlifting World Championship, which ended on Friday in Abuja, featured athletes from Georgia, Ghana, Egypt, Cameroon.

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SPORTS

BREAKING: Again, Kenyans David Tumo, Sharon Cherop win 2020 Access Bank Lagos City Marathon

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David Barmasai Tumo

Kenyans David Barmasai Tumo and Sharon Jemutai Cherop are the winners of the 42 km Lagos City Marathon. Both smashed the records.

Tumo set a course record time of 2:10:22, erasing the time of last year’s winner.

Tumo, has broken the marathon’s four-year record in 42km race to win the first prize of $50,000.

He finishing the race in two hours, 10 minutes and 22 seconds, a time lesser than what previous winners had recorded.

In 2016, Abraham Kiptum of Kenya won in 2:16:21 seconds; 2017: Abraham Kiptum, Kenya 2:15:20secs;
2018: Abraham Kiprotich Kenyan-French 2:13:04secs; and in 2019, Sintayehu Legese of Ethiopia breast the finishing tape in 2:17:28secs.

Sharon Cherop, right: led the ladies

Another Kenyan Sharon Jemutai Cherop won in the women’s category by also setting a new record of 2:31:38, two minutes later than she made a similar race in Eldoret Kenya in 2018.

The 35 year-old is a veteran marathoner. She won a bronze medal at the age of sixteen in the 5000 metres at the World Junior Championships.

She was the bronze medal winner in the marathon at the 2011 World Championships in Athletics and won the Boston Marathon in 2012.

She also won the Eldoret City marathon in 2018 with a time of 2:29:57

Both male and female 42km runners competed for the grand prize of $50,000 while the second and third place winners $40,000 and $30,000 respectively.

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Man United fans attack club owners Glazers family

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Glazers family attacked by Man United fans

Manchester United’s UEFA Champions League qualification hopes suffered a blow with a 2-0 upset at home to Burnley in the English Premier League (EPL) on Wednesday. The Old Trafford fans immediately vented their anger at the club’s U.S. owners, the Glazers family.

Goals from Chris Wood and Jay Rodriguez ensured victory for Sean Dyche’s Burnley on a night when Manchester United looked nothing like a “big six’’ team.

Manchester United fans chanted protest songs aimed at the Glazer family, who have owned the club since 2005, while their team fell to a second straight loss.

After Sunday’s defeat by leaders Liverpool amidst criticism of the club for failing to secure any new additions so far in the January transfer window, there is an air of crisis around Manchester United.

The club’s decline since the departure of manager Alex Ferguson after their last English Premier League title in 2013 shows no signs of being reversed.

The fans clearly put the blame on the Glazers and their chief executive Ed Woodward, more than manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Thousands of fans flooded out of Old Trafford well before the end of the game.

But the hardcore supporters in the Stretford End chose to stay and continue to make their feelings known.

“(In the) 84th minute I saw people get up and go. That is unheard of at this stadium.

“Seeing people leave with disdain on their face. It is an embarrassment. The downward spiral in seven years has been remarkable,” former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand said in his role as a match pundit for BT Sport.

The defeat leaves Manchester United fifth in the standings, six points adrift of Chelsea who currently occupy the fourth UEFA Champions League qualification spot.

Wood fired Burnley ahead in the 39th minute with a half-volley on the turn after a simple free-kick routine.

Ben Mee headed the ball down into the path of the New Zealand international.

The Clarets, who move up to 13th place, doubled their lead, seven minutes after the break, through striker Rodriguez who blasted into the top corner after a smart exchange with Wood.

Manchester United had a last minute header from Luke Shaw ruled out for pushing.

But they created few clear-cut chances as Burnley held on for their first victory at Old Trafford since 1962.

“It’s mad. It’s a great feeling. The lads have come in the dressing room buzzing,” said Burnley-born Rodriguez.

“These are the moments you work hard for. We stopped them playing. We showed our qualities to keep the ball and hurt them.

“That two-goal cushion was good for the team. This result means everything,” he added.

The Clarets, deserved winners, had drifted towards the relegation zone after four straight losses but this victory, following Sunday’s win over third-place Leicester City has steadied the ship.

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