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Liverpool Wins Club World Cup

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Roberto Firmino was again the hero for Liverpool as the forward’s extra-time goal allowed Jurgen Klopp’s side to beat Flamengo 1-0 in the Club World Cup final in Doha on Saturday and lift the trophy for the first time.

Firmino was picked out by Sadio Mane and waited for goalkeeper Diego Alves to commit before slotting low into the net in the 99th minute of an absorbing contest at the Khalifa International Stadium.It was the moment that finally punctured the hopes of the Brazilian side and their vibrant support, after Liverpool had been denied a penalty by VAR at the end of normal time.The Qatari referee initially gave a spot-kick for a foul on Mane by Rafinha on the way into the box, but changed his mind following a lengthy review, forcing the contest into an extra 30 minutes.Still, the European champions had enough to come out on top, with Firmino repeating his semi-final heroics, when he scored an injury-time goal to secure victory against Monterrey of Mexico.The win allows Liverpool to complete a fabulous year with a third piece of silverware to go with the Champions League and UEFA Supercup.Having earned the title of world champions, if Klopp’s team can see out their huge lead at the top of the Premier League this season, they will have a case to be remembered as the finest side in the illustrious history of the club.Flamengo had been hoping to repeat their win over Liverpool in the old Intercontinental Cup back in 1981 and thereby become the first non-European winners of the Club World Cup since fellow Brazilians Corinthians beat Chelsea in 2012.They fell short, but they certainly gave the Premier League leaders a game in what was their last outing of a long season.

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– Van Dijk back, Firmino hits post –

Klopp had welcomed back Virgil van Dijk after the inspirational Dutchman sat out Wednesday’s semi-final due to illness.That allowed skipper Jordan Henderson to return to his usual midfield berth, while Firmino, Mane and Trent Alexander-Arnold were all recalled after starting on the bench against the Mexicans.Firmino, Naby Keita and Alexander-Arnold all came close for Liverpool in the first six minutes as they came flying out of the traps.Fielding the same team that started their semi-final win over Al Hilal, the Brazilian and South American champions gradually settled into the game, spurred on by their raucous travelling support.Bruno Henrique, the star of their semi-final victory, had their best opportunity in the first half, coming inside from the left to meet a long ball forward by goalkeeper Alves before seeing his shot deflected past.The Rio giants, with veteran Portuguese coach Jorge Jesus on the touchline, matched the European champions for much of the first half but were lucky not to fall behind at the beginning of the second period.Less than two minutes after the restart, Firmino controlled Henderson’s ball forward and sent a shot off the inside of the post before seeing it rebound away.However, Liverpool also needed goalkeeper Alisson to come to the rescue with a fine stop from a Gabriel Barbosa strike, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain then went off injured as extra time began to loom.Then Alves stretched high to his left to tip a net-bound Henderson shot from 25 yards over the bar before, with the match in injury time, the English side thought they had a penalty for Rafinha’s tackle on Mane.However, referee Abdulrahman Al Jassim dramatically cancelled the decision after coming across to review the footage on a pitchside monitor.Liverpool finally found a way through nine minutes into the first half of extra time though, with Mane finding Firmino after being pushed wide of goal by Rafinha.Firmino made no mistake, and Flamengo were unable to respond.AFP

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Crown FC felicitates with Oyo sports commissioner on recovery from COVID- 19

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Crown football club of Ogbomoso on Wednesday felicitated with the asymptomatic Oyo State commissioner for youths and sports development, Mr. Seun Fakorede, for coming out negative after weeks of being in self isolation for Coronavirus.

The Acting General Manager of the club, Mr Kunle Oyeleye, as learnt, could not hide his Joy when he received the news of the negative test of the commissioner.

” It’s the Lord’s doing and it’s marvellous in our sight. The doctors cared but God, the divine healer, has healed him. To God be the glory.

“No doubt the period has been very challenging for Asiwaju Seun Fakorede. He summoned courage and kept educating the public on the pandemic. We are all happy he is back stronger, fresher and more healthier.

“I was with some of my colleagues when I got the very good news. Our joy holds no bound. We bless God and also appreciate the Executive Governor, Engineer Oluseyi Abiodun Makinde and other agencies that have been in the forefront working tirelessly and professionally at ensuring that the pandemic is curbed from spreading”, the former Administrative Secretary said.

Seun Fakorede, had on Wednesday tested negative to Coronavirus after weeks in self isolation, though asymptomatic.

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He was tested positive to COVID-19 on the 24th June,2020 and has been in self-isolation adhering very strictly to stipulated rules and various medical checks and prescriptions by the National Centre For Disease Control (NCDC).

The COVID-19 test report of the commissioner by the Bioresository Clinical Virology Laboratory (BCVL), College Of Medicine, University of Ibadan, reported by Mr Olasunkanmi Olisa and duly signed by Dr. Adeola Fowotade showed that he is negative.

Crown FC in a statement signed by its publicist, Mr. Tunji Alabi explained that through the challenging period, Fakorede, on different forum, kept sensitizing the public on the need to obey all the stipulated rules and regulations and that COVID-19 is not a death sentence but real and we must learn how to leave with the deadly pandemic.

The Coronavirus pandemic has halted many economic activities globally including football but it is hoped that sporting activities will return soonest with the gradual return of soccer in some countries.

 

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Real madrid Mariano tests positive for COVID-19

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Real Madrid forward Mariano has tested positive for coronavirus, the La Liga champions announced on Tuesday.

“After the COVID-19 tests carried out yesterday on our first team footballers by the Real Madrid Medical Services, our player Mariano, tested positive,” Real said in a statement.

“The player is in perfect health and is complying with the protocol of isolation at home.”

Mariano did not join the Real squad as players returned from a post-season break to start training for their Champions League last 16 showdowns at Manchester City on August 7. The 26-year-old has not appeared in that competition this season.

The Dominican international, who returned to Real in 2018 after a successful season at Lyon, played little in the recently finished La Liga season due to competition for places and injuries.

He made only five substitute appearances as Real won their 34th Spanish title, scoring once, an added time goal against Barcelona.

AFP

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Ex-Super Eagles Goalie, Baruwa Reveals How  3SC Revived His Dwindling Career

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Former Super Eagles and Shooting Stars Sports Club of Ibadan Goalkeeper, Abiodun Baruwa has revealed how the Ibadan based football club played vital role in the resuscitation of his football career.

Baruwa, who opened up on his stint with the Oluyole Warriors while featuring
on BCOS TV sports programme ‘Weekend Sports’ also disclosed that 3SC infused new lease of life into his dying career.

According to the retired footballer, his career was going down when he joined the 3SC from Stationery Stores but his life was turned around in Ibadan.

The ex- Super Eagles goalie presently based in London, added the hospitality of 3SC fans and the encouragement he got from the club’s officials under late Taiwo Ogunjobi made him regained his confidence, and this resulted in his subsequent call-ups to the national teams at different grades.

“What many people didn’t know is that my career was in decline before I got to Shooting Stars, but the late Taiwo Ogunjobi took me in as a son and the fans showed me love. And that inspired me to churn out good performances for the team. Consequently I was called up to play for the Nigerian national teams at different levels”, Baruwa said on the sports programme he featured via Skype.

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“Because of the key role 3SC played in my football career, the club remain my darling team”, he added.

Expressing his dissatisfaction at the present plight of the club, the former 3SC goalkeeper encouraged its fans to keep supporting the club to enable it regain its top position.

Abiodun Baruwa, fondly called Omo Alhaja (Alhaja’s son) by Ibadan soccer fans, was part of the Shooting Stars team that slugged it out with Egyptian giants Zamalek at the CAF Champions League final in 1996 and was also a member of the Super Eagles squad to the France ’98 FIFA World Cup.

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