Ogenyi Onazi desires to make Nigerians proud in Russia – 2018 FIFA World Cup

Ogenyi Onazi desires to make Nigerians proud in Russia

 Ogenyi Onazi,Nigeria

Ogenyi Onazi

Nigeria’s global midfielder Ogenyi Onazi suggests he has developed in leaps and bounds since generating his debut for the Tremendous Eagles for a long time in the past. Onazi made his debut in the course of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil and points have been relatively demanding although donning the Tremendous Eagles environmentally friendly.

Just after failing to qualify for successive 2015 and 2017 CAF Africa Cup of Nations tournaments for the initially time in about forty a long time, he admits the place was struggling. “At that minute we experienced a lot of issues in the place, with the federation, between the players and there was a lot of confusion in the team,” Onazi admitted to FIFA.com. “We did not give up mainly because we experienced the option to demonstrate we were really a team and we were capable to make it. “We just advised ourselves we have to do this for all people we gave all our hearts from working day one to the pretty final.” However, in advance of the 2018 global tournament’s version, the Trabzonspor player extra that he desires to make persons pleased and proud of the team.
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“This is my goal in lifestyle: To make persons pleased and to make certain that they have hopes that points are likely to be improved in lifestyle,” extra Onazi. “It was a really good minute for us. We experienced to celebrate it pretty effectively with our captain John Mikel Obi.”


PLAYER SPOTLIGHT: Idrissa Gueye – We will make Senegalese people proud at 2018 World Cup – 2018 FIFA World Cup – Russia

Austin Ditlhobolo

Thursday Nov 30, 2017. 10:00

The Everton FC midfielder has reflected on Senegal’s successful 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign.

His club has struggled in the English Premier League (EPL) this season which has resulted in the departure of coach Ronald Koeman, who has since been replaced by Sam Allardyce.

Gueye, who remains one of the most important players for Everton, has at least enjoyed the escapism of helping Senegal qualify for the World Cup.

The holding midfielder was 12 when Senegal first reached the tournament in South Korea and Japan in 2002.

In those days Gueye was playing barefoot on sandy roads with rocks for goalposts.

“I was in my village as a boy at that time and when Senegal score everyone is going out and celebrating,” Gueye told Daily Mail.

“I will never forget this moment – it was the first time Senegal was at the World Cup.

“Now it’s the second time we have qualified and hopefully we make the people of Senegal proud.”

Gueye, who is a key player for Senegal, played eight games during their 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign.

The 28-year-old helped Everton beat West Ham United 4-0 in an EPL match on Wednesday.

He played the entire match which was played at the iconic Goodison Park.

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SuperSport’s Clayton Daniels: We should be proud of CAF campaign – ABSA Premiership 2017/18

Clayton Daniels of Supersport United challenged by Louis Amake Autchanga of CF Mounana during the 2017 CAF Confederations Cup match between Supersport United and CF Mounana at the Lucas Moripe Stadium, Atteridgeville South Africa on 08 July 2017 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Phumzile Ngcatshe

Tuesday Nov 28, 2017. 21:00

SuperSport United defender Clayton Daniels believes his team should be proud of their CAF Confederation Cup campaign despite losing to TP Mazembe in the final.

United ended runners-up in the continental competition after losing 2-1 on aggregate to the DR Congo giants, who defended the trophy they won in 2016.

With their long African campaign now at an end, Daniels believes Matsatsantsa should turn their attention to trying to win South Africa’s top flight league.

“Well we are also proud we could make it that far [in the Confed Cup],” Daniels told Kick-Off.

“We should take out all the positive out of our journey in Africa which is never easy, travelling for days back and forth, sacrificing a lot away from the family.

“But we grew stronger as a team as time went, so we are looking forward now to the league because that’s our next objective.

“We gave it our best in both games [both legs of the final]. The performance was there, the effort was there, the fight was there… not one player didn’t give it their all and we are proud as a team.”

United will begin the process of catching up missed games in the Absa premiership when they host Ajax Cape Town in Nelspruit on Wednesday evening.

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Sadio Mané: We want to make Africa proud – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers

Sadio Mane of Senegal celebrates a goal with teammates during the 2018 World Cup Qualifiers football match between South Africa and Senegal at Peter Mokaba Stadium, Polokwane on 10 November 2017 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Bertin Basson

Saturday Nov 11, 2017. 14:14

Senegal ace Sadio Mané has revealed that there was a lot of pressure on him to perform for the Teranga Lions leading into their clash against South Africa in Polokwane.

The Liverpool attacker rose to the occasion setting up both goals for the West African’s in a 2-0 win. Victory securing their sport at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia – a return to the world stage for the first time in 16 years.

“It was not an easy game for us, but we kept on wishing and believing and in the end of the day I think we deserved it,” Mané told SuperSport in reflection of their win at the Peter Mokaba Stadium.

“Honestly it was not easy for me as there was a lot of pressure, but that is normal for any player. You just have to believe in yourself and in your own quality, work hard every time and things will go your way.

“We worked together as a team, we continued to push. This is a great achievement for all the players.

Moreover, the 25-year-old explained that they hope to do the whole African continent proud in Russia next year.

“This is for all Africa, we want to go there and make Africa proud,” the Liverpool attacker concluded.

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I’m proud of my players – Algeria coach – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa

Graeme Jackson

Monday Oct 09, 2017. 13:00

Despite a 2-0 loss to Cameroon this past weekend, Algeria coach Lucas Alcaraz insists he is proud of players.

The Fennec Foxes were beaten by the Indomitable Lions in Yaounde to suffer their fourth successive defeat in Group B of the 2018 World Cup qualifiers.

The match may have been a dead rubber – with both Algeria and Cameroon out of the running for Russia 2018 – but it still piled further pressure on Alcaraz.

Nonetheless, the Spanish coach insisted that his team put up a good performance, with only individual mistakes costing them the match.

“I think we have provided a great performance today against Cameroon,” Alcaraz said after the match, as quoted by Le Buteur.

“Unfortunately, we made many mistakes that the opponent took advantage of to win this game.

“For example, Cameroon’s first goal came on one of our mistakes. We also failed to realise our goal opportunities.

“Of course I cannot be satisfied after a defeat, but I feel that we have not been second best in the game.

“It is the mistakes made that did not allow us to achieve the goal for which we came here in Cameroon.”

The Algeria coach added, “It is clear that one cannot be satisfied after a defeat. But I’m proud of the performance of my players.

“They showed a lot of will and seriousness in the game. They tried everything on the pitch. Unfortunately, the final outcome of the game was not favorable.”

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Bafana attacker Percy Tau: We should be proud – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa

Percy Tau of South Africa (r) celebrates goal with Themba Zwane during the 2018 World Cup qualifier football match between South Africa and Burkina Faso at Soccer City, Johannesburg on 07 October 2017 ©Gavin Barker/BackpagePix

Graeme Jackson

Sunday Oct 08, 2017. 13:30

South Africa’s Percy Tau believes his team should be proud of their 3-1 win over Burkina Faso in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers on Saturday.

Bafana Bafana claimed an impressive victory at FNB Stadium to breathe some life back into their Group D campaign.

Their win, combined with Senegal’s victory over Cape Verde later in the day, means Stuart Baxter’s side now have their fate back in their own hands: if they win both of their remaining matches in the group, they will qualify for Russia 2018.

Tau, who scored a goal and created another in the win over the Stallions, believes Bafana Bafana took a major step forward.

“I think we did very well. I think we should be proud of our work and we just want to say thanks to supporters for coming out. Today we did much better than the previous games, now we scored so that’s the difference,” Tau told SuperSport TV.

“Today we knew we had to win to keep our hopes high so that we still believe we can make it.

“It’s just one of those games where we got everything right. We were connected, we were solid and we defended very well also.

“We got the goals early, we tried to put them under pressure. It was just happening for us today.”

South Africa’s remaining games are both against Senegal next month: on the 10th in Polokwane and the 14th in Dakar.

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South Africans can be proud, says Stuart Baxter – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers

Percy Tau of South Africa (second right) celebrates goal with Bongani Zungu of South Africa during the 2018 World Cup qualifier football match between South Africa and Burkina Faso at Soccer City, Johannesburg on 07 October 2017 ©Gavin Barker/BackpagePix

Austin Ditlhobolo

Sunday Oct 08, 2017. 10:00

South Africa head coach Stuart Baxter says his players can be proud following their performance against Burkina Faso on Saturday afternoon.

Bafana Bafana secured a 3-1 win over Burkina Faso in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualification (CAF) Group D match at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg.

“With the knife at the throat, the players gave a magnificent performance. It’s not easy, people have given them a lot of criticism, some warranted, some over the top,” Baxter told the media after the match.

“I think that performance in that situation speaks volumes for South African football. I think we got a nice balance between defending doggedly and expressing yourself in the last third, especially when movement, pace and trickery was bamboozling them.”

Goals from Percy Tau, Themba Zwane and Sibusiso Vilakazi inspired Bafana to victory over the Stallions, who grabbed a consolation goal through Alain Traore.

“We certainly don’t want showboating. We want our skill, our technique, our ideas to hurt our opponent,” the British tactician added.

“A couple of times late on in the game, we didn’t manage the game very well because we tried that and we were down to 10 men, and it’s about keeping the ball and not risking it, but that’s okay, we’ll learn from that.

“In terms of expressing yourself, it’s putting yourself into a mental frame of mind that you want to play and they wanted to play,” he continued.

“They were thinking about what they were doing on the field and not thinking about stuff that is being written or the next two games, it was here and now, and I just felt it in the dressing room that the game-plan was simple and clear. The lads did their best, not always perfect and the total performance, I don’t say this very often but South Africa can be proud.”

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Tinkler proud of CCC semifinalists SuperSport United

Austin Ditlhobolo

Tuesday Sep 26, 2017. 12:00

SuperSport United head coach Eric Tinkler is pleased to have guided his team to the 2017 CAF Confederation Cup semifinals.

Two goals by Thuso Phala helped the South African side hold Zambian side Zesco to a 2-2 draw in the quarterfinal second-leg clash at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola on Saturday.

As a result, SuperSport qualified for the last four on the away goals rule after the tie ended in a 2-2 stalemate on aggregate with John Ching’Andu and David Owino having netted for Zesco.

“I’m very proud of the boys‚” Tinkler told The Sowetan.

“They fought hard and showed great character and getting that late winner was extremely satisfiying.

“It was a nerve-wracking finish and in the latter stages the referee wasn’t doing anything to help us and they were looking to waste time,” he continued.

“That is what made it so gratifying to win in the way we did. The boys just kept going. We need to go there‚ I had said before it would be a fight and it was.

“And the boys fought the whole way.”

SuperSport will now take on Tunisian outfit Club Africain in the two-legged semifinals between September and October, 2017.

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Okpotu: Nigeria to make nation proud at WAFU

Okpotu Anthony of Nigeria celebrates goal with Salisu Yusuf, coach of Nigeria during 2017 WAFU Cup of Nations match between Ghana and Nigeria at Cape Coast Sports Stadium in Cape Coast, Ghana on 18 September 2017 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Austin Ditlhobolo

Friday Sep 22, 2017. 16:30

Nigeria international Anthony Okpotu has expressed his happiness after netting his maiden goal for the Super Eagles.

The marksman opened the scoring as the home-based Super Eagles overcame Ghana 2-0 in the 2017 WAF Cup of Nations Group A match at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium on Monday.

As a result, Nigeria advanced to the semi-finals where they defeated Group B winners, Benin 1-0 with Okpotu grabbing an important assist at Ghana’s Cape Coast Sports Stadium on Thursday.

The highly-rated striker scooped the 2016/17 Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL) Golden Boot accolade after netting 19 goals in the top-flight league.

The NPFL official website spoke to Okpotu, who stated that it was a great feeling scoring for the national team.

“It is a great feeling scoring in the national team jersey. I am happy to have finally opened my goals account for my country,” he said.

According to the site, Okpotu said that Nigeria intend to make the nation proud at the West African tournament.

Nigeria will now take on tournament hosts, Ghana in the final at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium on Sunday.

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South Africa proud despite failure to qualify, says Senong – 2018 CHAN Qualifiers

Austin Ditlhobolo

Monday Aug 21, 2017. 16:00

South Africa assistant coach Thabo Senong has reflected on their disappointing 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) qualifying campaign.

Bafana Bafana failed to qualify for the finals after losing 2-0 to Zambia’s Chipolopolo in the second-leg clash in Ndola, Zambia on Saturday.

Zambia advanced to the finals which will be hosted by Kenya after winning the tie 4-2 on aggregate – with the first-leg having ended in a 2-2 draw in East London, South Africa.

Senong, who was in charge of the team in the absence of SA head coach Stuart Baxter, spoke to the South African Football Association (SAFA) Media.

SAFA MEDIA: Your impressions of the match against Zambia?

Thabo Senong: It was a good match and very tough. We played well for about 70 minutes, then the energy levels of our boys started to drop, that’s when we were forced to make a few substitutions. We created chances throughout the match but we did not convert them. We are disappointed that we did not win the match and qualify for 2018 CHAN, but we are not discouraged because we still believe it was a good exercise for some players to get international experience. It was a good exercise for some young players to be in structure and also increase the big pool of Bafana Bafana. There were players that impressed and this will be a good experience for them going back to their clubs and it will contribute positively to their football.

SAFA MEDIA: It must be an exciting journey, however difficult it was, that has been travelled since the COSAFA Cup matches up to this last one in CHAN?

TS: Yes it has been. If you think about it we have worked with different groups of players throughout the CHAN qualifiers and the COSAFA Cup camps, despite the players coming in and going out of the squad, that gave us a good opportunity to give other players a chance to play at international level. So yes, it was good discoveries, and going back to their clubs these players will benefit a lot. But as the technical team, we are very proud that we have managed to unleash a lot of potential future players that that will be taken seriously by their clubs and some will be considered seriously for the main Bafana Bafana squad going forward.

SAFA MEDIA: In your view what will you count as an achievement from this whole exercise?

TS: Throughout the four matches – two against Botswana and a further two against Zambia – we have managed to give 35 players a chance to play at this level and to learn under these conditions. We have given about 15 former U20 players an opportunity to grow and learn from this kind of environment, and this will benefit the future Olympic Team, which will have players who would have played in Bafana Bafana already. The exercise will help some of these senior players because most of them are fringe players at their clubs – Sibusiso Khumalo, Kgotso Moleko, Mario Booysen – they will go back to their respective clubs with a lot of confidence, and that might help them to be considered by the respective coaches of the clubs.

SAFA MEDIA: Despite all the challenges, was this a worthwhile exercise?

TS: Despite all the challenges that we encountered, mainly of players being withdrawn from the national team after being recalled by their clubs, this was indeed a worthy exercise. I would like to say a big thank you to all the clubs that managed to release their players, and we know it was not easy, as they also had to move their programmes around to accommodate us. On the overall, this has been a good and fruitful exercise where all the stakeholders have learnt a lot. From now on we know that Bafana Bafana has a big pool of players that the head coach can always look at whenever he wants to build his team to qualify for the 2018 World Cup as well as the 2019 AFCON tournament.

SAFA MEDIA: You spoke about the U20 players being used, but what next for them?

TS: If you remember very well, this is the same exercise we used in 2015 where we used the CHAN and COSAFA Cup to prepare the 2016 Olympic Team, and it benefitted us a lot because we managed to qualify for the Olympics Games in Brazil last year. So we have used the same exercise where we have again given many U20 players Bafana Bafana caps, so with these players we are going to start the road to Olympic qualifiers next year. These players will have benefitted a lot from these CHAN and COSAFA Cup matches, with the experience they will be able to compete and qualify for the Olympic Games in 2020 in Tokyo.

SAFA MEDIA: So not only are we giving ourselves a chance in the qualifiers coming up, but also increasing the pool of Bafana Bafana.

TS: Absolutely. This was the policy that was encouraged by head coach Stuart Baxter that whenever we play these two tournaments we need to have a clear vision and policy – we must always make sure that there is 60 percent young players coming from the junior structures and 40 percent experienced fringe players from the PSL that can may be be considered for the main Bafana Bafana squad going forward and also considered by their clubs in terms of getting game time.

SAFA MEDIA: This will surely mean the youngster will not be lost in the system?

TS: All these youngsters that have been part of the COSAFA/CHAN exercise will never be lost in the system because next year in February/March they will start their route to qualifying for U23 AFCON, and will follow that with qualifications for the Olympic Games.

SAFA MEDIA: The Bafana Bafana technical team spoke of COSAFA/CHAN in terms of development, do you think that was achieved?

TS: Yes, from Day 1 we agreed that we had to focus on development, put our focus on young players and we took a big risk, which paid off. This exercise has helped a lot because we believe the likes of Sandile Mthethwa will get more game time, and the same goes for Sipho Mbule, Tercious Malepe, Jamie Webber and Masilake Phohlongo. I believe this whole exercise was about rebuilding the future Olympic team and we have achieved that.

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Pele proud of his sons who followed him – 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers – Africa

Phumzile Ngcatshe

Saturday Jul 29, 2017. 11:00

The Black Stars of Ghana legend Abedi Pele has expressed happiness seeing his children, Rahim, Andrew and Jordan Ayew playing football at the highest level.

The former Black Stars skipper has revealed he gets mixed feelings whenever he watches his children Rahim, Andre and Jordan play for both club and country.

In his hey day, Pele made headlines across the continent after winning the Africa Cup of Nations with Ghana in 1982 as a teenager and later led the lines for the four-time African champions.


The Black Stars legend and three-time African Player of the Year said he still maintains the same ecstasy he had as a player when watching his kids play top level football.

“It’s a great feeling when I sit back and watch them play in top clubs- I just feel good. I’m a proud father of these boys and I’m certainly grateful to God,” he told AOIFootball.com.

“I must say I have mixed feelings. When they win and may be score a goal, I feel great, happy and proud and when they lose and are not doing well at competitions or at club level, I feel worse, though the joy of having to see them at the same level I played is ecstatic.”

Furthermore, the ex-Olympique Marseille forward adds that when they lose or miss chances for club and country, he feels sad, but is overall delighted with their progress.

The 52-year-old featured 73 times for the West Africans, scoring 33 goals in a career that spanned 16 years and also won the UEFA Champions League with Marseille in 1993.

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Zeddy Saileti proud of his Nkana record despite axing

Nkana coach Zeddy Saileti

Phumzile Ngcatshe

Saturday Jun 17, 2017. 15:00

Axed Nkana coach Zeddy Saileti says he is proud of his achievements at the club and is not bitter with his dismissal.

Saileti, his assistant Gift Kampamba and technical director Aggrey Chiyangi parted ways with the Kitwe-based club on Wednesday following a string of poor results.

The club has since announced the technical team changes as they appointed the Zambian U20 national team coach Beston Chambeshi, who will be deputised by Manfred Chabinga.

Saileti led the team to four wins, four draws and three losses to occupy the eighth position on the log with 16 points.

“I am proud of my achievement and I have done my part. I have no hard feelings. I have played for Nkana and Nkana has made me what I am,” said Saileti.

“I wish the team all the best of luck going forward.”

On the other hand, Saileti led Nkana to the runners-up position in the Samuel ‘Zoom’ Ndhlovu Charity Shield after losing 2-0 to Zesco United on April 2 in Ndola.

Nkana host rivals Power Dynamos on Saturday in the Zambian Super League, with the club’s president Everisto Kabila, saying the changes are aimed at improving the team’s performance.

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Claude Leroy proud of Togo players despite defeat – 2019 Africa Cup of Nations Qualifiers

Togo’s head coach Claude Leroy

Graeme Jackson

Monday Jun 12, 2017. 19:00

Togo coach Claude Leroy said he was proud of his players despite their loss away to Algeria on Sunday night.

The Sparrow Hawks were beaten 1-0 by the Fennec Foxes in a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in Blida.

Sofiane Hanni scored the only goal of the game midway through the first half, but Togo were unlucky not to get something out of the game after a strong showing in the second stanza.

“I am obviously disappointed with the result of the game because I remain convinced that the draw would have been more fair,” Leroy told a post-match press conference.

“My players had a very good meeting. Admittedly, we made a defensive error that cost us dearly, but overall my players have made a great game.

“I congratulate my players for this performance because we put this team of Algeria in difficulty, especially in the second half. We have done a lot of tactical work.

“I told my players at the end of the game that I was proud of them. I am disappointed but I am also proud of my men.”

Togo will hope to bounce back into contention for the 2019 finals when they resume their campaign with a home clash against Benin next March.

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