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Nigeria: 16 coaches from Africa shortlisted as “Future Stars” by Arsenal, WorldRemit

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WorldRemit on Thursday announced that 16 applicants from Africa have been shortlisted for its Future Stars programme. Of these 16 coaches, eight are women.

WorldRemit and Arsenal launched the second edition of the Future Stars programme in August to recognise the valuable contributions that grassroots youth football coaches make to their communities by teaching the children they train life skills on and off the pitch.

Through the programme, WorldRemit will sponsor two winners – one male and one female – to fly to London for a personalised training session with Arsenal Football Development coaches.

Entries for Future Stars closed on 4 September, and the programme received over 1,400 entries from coaches from across Africa and the Americas.

A panel of judges from WorldRemit and Arsenal Football Development reviewed the applications and selected 20 semi-finalists, including 16 coaches from Africa, based on the following criteria:

  • The commitment of the coach to improving the lives of their community
  • The impact the coach has had on young people within their community
  • The strength of the coach’s proposal to pass on their training on their return home

In recognition of their commitment to using football to bring their communities together, the 20 semi-finalists will receive Arsenal shirts for their youth squad.

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What’s next for the semi-finalists?

From the 20 semi-finalists, the judging panel will select eight coaches – four male and four female – as finalists. Their stories will be shared on www.FutureStars.WorldRemit.com in late October and the two winners will be chosen based on a public vote on the website.

Andrew Stewart, Managing Director for Africa and the Middle East, said: “Congratulations to the 16 African semi-finalists! 

“Our business is all about connecting communities, no matter where they are in the world. We developed Future Stars to celebrate the amazing work that football coaches do to support young people and have been so impressed by the quality and diversity of the applications this year.”

Simon McManus, Head Coach at Arsenal Football Development, added: “Arsenal is thrilled to partner with WorldRemit to recognise coaches who use the power of football to inspire and support young people across the globe.

“We have one of the most successful women’s sides in the world and are committed to encouraging greater participation in the sport among women. Through this edition of Future Stars, we hope to further amplify the positive impact that female coaches have on their communities.”

Coaches in the Future Stars shortlist from Africa

Nigeria

Uzoma Kingsley Akanador, Coach at Unity International Charity Organisation in Lagos.

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Ademilokun Oluwaseun David, Coach at XPR Football in Lagos.

Chinasa Ukanda, Coach at Help The Talent Academy in Lagos.

Towobola Grace Iyanuoluwa, Head Coach at Hostel Football Team and Assistant Coach at CityBoys Football Club in Ibadan.

Modupe Marilyn Jiwalde Pusmut, Coach at Future Stars FC Sabon Barki in Jos.

Kenya

Feisal Abdi Hassan, Coach in Nairobi

Beldine Lilian Achieng Odemba, Coach at Kariobangi Sharks Academy in Nairobi.

Susan Wanjiru Njoki, Coach at Kahawa Sportive Soccer Academy in Nairobi.

Everline Achieng Onyango, Coach at Mukuru Starlets in Nairobi.

Ghana

Samuel Taylor, Coach at EM Sporting Club, Accra

Alhassan Iddi Manzah, Coach at Northern Women’s Football Clubs Association in Tamale-Dalun

Uganda

Bakit Isaac Agogo, Coach at Watoto Sports Academy in Gulu.

Andrew Amanya, Coach at Kigezi Soccer Academy in Kabale.

Nabisenke Joan, Coach in Kampala

Zimbabwe

Titus Tongesai Sanagurai, Coach at Big Stuff Youth Soccer Academy in Harare.

Winnet Muranganwa, Coach at Zengeza Busters Soccer Academy in Chitungwiza.

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Ex-Shooting Stars Idol, Odegbami advises Makinde to immortalize Muda Lawal, other sports heroes

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A  member of the glorious IICC Shooting Stars football club of Ibadan that won Nigeria’s first continental title, African Cup of Winners in 1976, Chief Segun Odegbami has enjoined Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo state to immortalize Late Muda Lawal and other sports heroes.

Late Muda Lawal was also a member of the history making IICC Shooting Stars set of 1976, alongside Odegbami and Late Best Ogedegbe.

The trio were also members of Nigeria’s historic senior male football team, then called the Green Eagles, that won the nation’s first AFCON trophy in 1980.

Featuring on the BCOS TV sports programme, SBS Show, Chief Odegbami noted with regrets that Late Muda Lawal and other Nigerian heroes were not properly immortalized.

“Nigerians have many heroes not only in sports but also in various fields of life. However we don’t appreciate our heroes. It’s saddening that there’s nothing on ground in Ibadan where Muda Lawal lived, served and died, to show his contributions to the development of sports in the city”, the retired footballer known in his hey days as Mathematical Segun Odegbami said.

He, however  advised Governor Makinde to blaze the trail for other governors by putting structures in place to honour and preserve the memories of Late Muda Lawal and other Nigerian heroes.

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Odegbami continued, “I enjoin the handsome governor of Oyo state, Seyi Makinde to do what other governors have not done by putting structures on ground in honour of Muda Lawal and other heroes”.

The living soccer legend, fondly called Big Seg, further advised that legacies and families of the departed sports heroes should be taken care of and not allowed to suffer.

Chief Segun Odegbami was speaking in remembrance of Nigeria’s midfield maestro Late Muda Lawal who died 29 years ago in Ibadan.

Late Muda Lawal was a player/coach of IICC Shooting Stars (now 3SC), alongside another legend of the club Dr Felix Owolabi Akinloye, when he died on the 6th of July 1991 at the age of 37.

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World tennis champion, Djokovic tests positive for COVID-19

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Tennis world number one Novak Djokovic, Tuesday disclosed that  he has tested positive for coronavirus, joining a slew of other infected players who took part in an exhibition tennis tournament in the Balkans.

According to AFP, “Novak Djokovic tested positive for a virus COVID-19,” read a statement from his staff. “He is not showing any symptoms “.

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Chelsea’s Hudson-Odoi cleared of rape

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Callum Hudson-Odoi will not face any further action regarding a rape allegation, the Chelsea winger said on Saturday.

Hudson-Odoi was arrested on May 17 and released on bail.

But the England international has now said the police will not be pursuing the matter.

“At a time where there are bigger things happening in the world right now, you may also be aware of serious allegations that were made against me,” Hudson-Odoi wrote on Twitter.

“I have stayed silent and assisted the police fully throughout their enquiries, as I knew the day would soon come when my name would be cleared.

“Following a full and thorough investigation, the police have now confirmed they will take no further action.”

The 19-year-old added: “I would like to use this platform to thank everyone who has stood by my side and supported me during this difficult period.”

Hudson-Odoi made a full recovery after becoming the first Premier League player to test positive for COVID-19 in March and has been taking part in Chelsea’s preparations for the Premier League resumption next week.

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