sports

Hudson-Odoi stretches his legs as glum Sarri takes Chelsea training

CALLUM HUDSON-ODOI finally had the chance to stretch his legs – as he trained in front of a glum-looking Maurizio Sarri today.The young winger, 18, was once again glued to the bench for the 2-0 FA Cup defeat to Manchester United last night, with fans quickly losing patience with the boss.Zidane is now being tipped to take over from the Italian after fans chanted “f*** Sarri-ball” and “you're getting sacked in the morning” last night.With the Blues now out of contention in the FA Cup – as well as Premier League, you'd think – Sarri turned his attention to Europe today.Chelsea host Malmo on Thursday in the second leg of their last-32 Europa League tie – desperate for a more encouraging display.The whole squad, including Hudson-Odoi, David Luiz, Pedro and Ruben Loftus-Cheek were put through their paces at Cobham today.While Cesar Azpilicueta had demanded a cup final performance before yesterday's embarrassment, they once again showed a worrying lack of desire.In fact, desperate fans have claimed Sarri could be “deliberately ruining” the club with his “shocking substitutions” and tactical decisions.The Italian brought on right-back Davide Zappacosta for Azpilicueta while two goals behind with…

sports

CSKA Sofia winger Edwin Gyasi plots Levski Sofia downfall ahead of Sofia derby

CSKA Sofia winger Edwin Gyasi says the victory over Botev Vritsa will serve as a morale booster for them ahead of the derby clash against Levski Sofia.Gyasi scored his fourth league goal for the Army-men in the 2-1 win against Botev over the weekend.Nestor El Maestro's side have been faced with criticism following their disappointing end to the match as the visitors nearly pulled level.But according to the Ghana wideman, though they did not finish the game with a flourish, he's happy with the maximum points as they eye another win over city rivals Levski on Sunday.”It is better to win before the match against Levski than to make a draw or to lose, I hope that will give us confidence, and I hope we will look the same way against Levski. I heard a lot about Lubo Penev before even I came here. He is very direct with us, he told me that he wants this and this and that from me, he told everyone, I think the team needed it.”CSKA Sofia's main title contenders Ludogorets Razgrad have dropped four points in two games since the league resumed a fortnight ago, and Gyasi was…

sports

Nigeria star Kenneth Omeruo reveals Essien's influence on his career at Chelsea

Nigeria international Kenneth Omeruo has disclosed that Michael Essien had a big influence on his career during his stay at Chelsea FC.The Kaduna-born centre-back joined Chelsea from Belgian side Standard Liege in 2012 but is yet to make any senior appearance for the Blues as he has been loaned to six European clubs.The 25-year-old was again shipped out on loan to Spanish side CD Leganes in the summer – where he has established himself as vital cog for the side in the La Liga.Omeruo has recounted how former Chelsea and Ghana star Michael Essien took him under his wings after signing for the London-based side club in 2012.“Michael Emenalo was someone I could speak to at Chelsea when I was newly signed by the club.””He is a Nigerian and was the Sport Director  that signed me. So, of course, he played a big role in my coming to Chelsea.”“And my biggest influence from Chelsea would definitely be Micheal Essien. It is definitely him.”He has featured 20 times in all competitions for Mauricio Pellegrino's men this term. 

sports

AFCON 2019: Kwesi Appiah, Tanko off to Europe to monitor Ghanaian players

Black Stars head coach Kwesi Appiah and his assistant Ibrahim Tanko are going on a tour to Europe to monitor Ghanaian Players abroad as part of preparations for the Africa Cup of Nations.According to sources Kwesi Appiah will also use this opportunity to select a camp base in one of the European countries where the Black Stars will have their pre-tournament camping ahead of the tournament.Spain has been mentioned as a preferred destination due to it closeness as well as having same climate with Egypt.Unconfirmed reports indicate that Kwesi Appiah may visit Kevin-Prince Boateng of Barcelona and Sulley Muntari on this tour.Spokesperson for the Normalisation Committee Dan Kwaku Yeboah confirmed this in an interview on Asempa FM, “Kwesi Appiah is going on a trip to Europe to check the camping base for the Black Stars and monitor players as well.“Is true, the Sports Minister Isaac Asiamah and President of the Normalisation Committee Dr Kofi Amoah want the team to have a good preparation because we don’t have enough time to plan.So this time around they want to do something different. It is why Kwesi Appiah and Ibrahim Tanko  have started with preparations for the…

sports

Crystal Palace boss Roy Hodgson lauds 'fantastic' Jeffery Schlupp

Crystal Palace manager, Roy Hodgson has lauded Jeffrey Schlupp after his opening goal against Doncaster Rovers helped secure Crystal Palace's passage to the FA Cup quarter-finals.The Ghanian left-back scored in last weekend's win over Fulham in the Premier League and followed that up with an accomplished performance on the weekend.”He's been fantastic this season, especially these last games,” the manager told BBC Sport.”It was another important goal, his fifth and that's not bad coming from midfield, playing in a position where he has to do a lot of defending.”It was a cracking goal, to run from two yards in your own half, hold the ball that long, hold off challenges then strike it as well as he did was a great start for us.”

sports

CAF CC: Yussif Chibsah charges Kotoko to start winning away matches

Yussif Chibsah has called on Asante Kotoko to start picking points on the road ahead of their clash with Nkana FC on Sunday. Kotoko face the Nkana Red Devils in the third round of games in the CAF Confederations Cup group stages but are yet to pick a point away from home after losing their opener to Al Hilal in Sudan.With the top two sides the only sides to qualify for the quarter-finals, Chibsah reiterated the importance of picking points in away games.”It is a league form so they just have to make sure they always get three points anytime they play at home and try to get a point or all away,” the former Asante Kotoko skipper said.”At the end of the day, the team with the highest points will qualify so winning your games is important. They have to focus on the away games and most importantly the home games because they can't afford to lose any point at home.”Asante Kotoko defeated Zesco United in Kumasi last Wednesday to record their first win of the group, which puts them at par with the rest of the teams in the pool.

sports

Abdul Alhassan bags a brace as Hearts edge past Liberty Professionals

Hearts of Oak extended their pre-season winning streak with a 3-2 win over Liberty Professionals on Wednesday afternoon at Pobiman.Goals from Abdul Manaf Alhassan (brace) and Kwadwo Obeng Jnr in the first half gave the Phobians the win over the Scientific Soccer Lads.Fatawu Mohammed started a beautiful build-up from the right side of the Hearts attack, linked up excellently with striker Kofi Kordzi, turned in quick to pick a through pass again and crossed nicely into the Liberty 18 box but keeper fails to make a first time catch leaving Manaf with no option than to hit a powerful one in to break the deadlock.Five minutes later, Manaf doubled the lead for the Phobians with another sumptuous finish after pouncing on a rebound from a Christopher Bonney corner kick to put the home side 2-0 up.Three minutes after the half-hour mark, Kwadwo Obeng Jnr increased the tally for Hearts with a powerful drive to leave Liberty Professionals helpless.But Elvis Kyei Baffour headed home to reduce the talky for Liberty four minutes to the end of the first half after Richmond Ayi failed to handle the ball well in a challenge with DeGraft.The visitors returned…

sports

National Women's League to kick off next month

The Ghana Football Association Normalization Committee has reached an agreement with the National Women's League clubs to start a Special Competition.The meeting attended by Owners/Representatives of the clubs met at the GFA Secretariat on Tuesday, February 19, 2019, to discuss the proposed Women's Normalization Competition.The competition will kick off on March 9, 2019, at various venues.Twelve (12) teams have been put into four groups of four for the tournament format.The best two teams from each will advance to the quarter-final stage which will be played on a home-and-away basis.The winners will then progress to the semi-final stage, each club is expected to register 30 players for the competition.Participation fee ¢7,500Quarter-finals ¢3,000Semi-finals ¢5,000

sports

Ghanaian defender Richard Ocran signs contract extension with Nkana FC

Ghana international Richard Ocran has penned a new contract extension with Zambian giants Nkana FC ahead of their Caf Confederation Cup fixture against Asante Kotoko on Sunday.The 25-year-old joined Nkana on a two-year deal in 2017 after being released by Ghana Premier League side AshantiGold and he has risen to become an integral member of the Kitwe-based club.The experienced central defender’s contract was due to expire next month but Nkana have extended it to 2021 to avoid leaving the club as a free agent.The Ghanaian defender has been a key contributor to the fortunes of Nkana both in the domestic league and Africa inter-club competitions where he has featured all in their games.He has previously played for Amidaus, Hasaacas, Dreams FC, Ashgold and also had a stint in Cyprus.The ball-playing centre-back will play on Sunday when Nkana host Kotoko in the CAF Confederations Cup Group D game.

sports

Jeffery Schlupp set sights on run to 'special' FA Cup final

Ghanaian international, Jeffrey Schlupp has set sights on playing in the FA Cup final at Wembley after spurring the club to a 2-0 triumph over Doncaster Rovers in the fifth round on Sunday.Roy Hodgson and his men are a step closer to the climax as goals from the Ghanaian and Max Meyer propelled them into the quarter-finals at The Keepmoat Stadium.”We obviously knew if we got past this round, we'd be in a good position to get to Wembley,” Schlupp said.”Of course this is a special tournament and hopefully with the luck of the draw we might get a 'lesser' team, if that's what you want to call it, to have a better chance of getting through.“But obviously any trip to Wembley is special and hopefully we can do that.”Watford will host Crystal Palace in the last-eight tie.The quarter-final games will be played from 15-18 March, with winning clubs receiving £720,000 in prize money.