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Wednesday, July 10, 2019

William Troost-Ekong’s late strike sent Nigeria into the semi-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations at the expense of South Africa.
The Udinese centre-back struck in the 89th minute to seal a 2-1 win at the Cairo International Stadium.
Samuel Chukwueze opened the scoring for Nigeria in the first half only for Bongani Zungu to level in the second half after VAR intervened.
The Super Eagles will play Ivory Coast or Algeria in the semi-finals in Cairo on Sunday.
Chukwueze opened the scoring after 27 minutes when he linked with Arsenal’s Alex Iwobi to score at the second attempt.
Zungu levelled with 20 minutes remaining when he nodded in from a free-kick and it was given after a VAR check showed the ball came off Nigeria’s Odion Ighalo before it fell to an initially offside Zungu.
But Nigeria won it with a minute left when goalkeeper Ronwen Williams missed his punch from Moses Simon’s corner to allow Troost-Ekong to bundle in the winner.

The Super Eagles were deserved winners and led through Villarreal youngster Chukwueze's first goal for his country. They should have been ahead by more when Williams pushed Peter Etebo's free-kick onto the bar.
Zungu's goal was the first in the Africa Cup of Nations given by the VAR, which has just been introduced for the quarter-finals. It looked offside initially but Percy Tau's free-kick hit Nigeria's Odion Ighalo on the way on to Amiens midfielder Zungu's head.
The game looked set for extra time before Williams flapped at a cross to leave Troost-Ekong with a simple finish.
Senegal, who beat Benin 1-0 earlier on Wednesday, play either Madagascar or Tunisia in the other semi-final.

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal set up a Wimbledon semi-final blockbuster on Wednesday, 11 years after their epic 2008 title duel which is widely regarded as the greatest Grand Slam final ever played.

Eight-time champion Federer racked up his 100th match win at Wimbledon and reached his 13th semi-final with a 4-6, 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 defeat of Japan’s Kei Nishikori.
The 37-year-old will be playing in the semi-finals of a major for the 45th time. Nadal, the two-time champion, made the last-four for the seventh time and 32nd at the Slams, by beating Sam Querrey 7-5, 6-2, 6-2.
Friday’s semi-final will be the pair’s 40th meeting and third at Wimbledon after Federer won the 2006 and 2007 finals before Nadal swept to his famous 2008 triumph.
The other semi-final will see four-time champion and top seed Novak Djokovic tackle Roberto Bautista Agut, the 23rd-seeded Spaniard who has made the last-four at a major for the first time.
Federer is also the oldest man to make the semis of a major since Jimmy Connors at the 1991 US Open.
“We have a lot of information on Rafa and so does he about us. I know people always hype it up in a big way,” said 20-time major winner Federer.
“They did that again in Paris this year (when Nadal won their semi-final in straight sets). I’d love to play against him here at Wimbledon.
“But I go about it like every other match.”
Nadal, who was also champion in 2010, broke Querrey six times, sent down 10 aces and 44 winners in a convincing display which will give him great hope of beating Federer for the 25th time.
“It’s great (to be facing Federer at Wimbledon again),” said 33-year-old Nadal whose recent 12th Roland Garros victory took him to 18 Slam titles.
“It’s difficult to imagine to be again in that situation and here we are. I’m excited to play against Roger here at Wimbledon again after such a long time.”
Federer said he was unaware that he had become the first man to claim 100 wins at the same Slam.
“I didn’t think of it while I was playing today. Actually not at all, not once. Then as I’m signing, a guy in the crowd says, Congratulations for your 100. Oh, yeah, I didn’t know. I forgot.”

James Tedesco has scored in the final 20 seconds to deliver New South Wales its first back-to-back State of Origin series win since 2005.

With the score level at 20-20, Tedesco finished off a brilliant late attacking move down the right edge and spun past the Queensland defenders to get the ball down with 79:40 on the clock and seal the 26-20 win.
NSW has produced an unforgettable last-gasp stunner to steal Game 3 and the entire 2019 State of Origin series in the most dramatic of circumstances.
Tedesco had to beat two defenders in a stunning bolt for the corner — and his run is now certain to be written into State of Origin folklore as the Blues emerged with a 26-20 win and a 2-1 series victory.
Tedesco said he was proud to bring home a second-straight series for the Blues.
"It was a pretty good feeling to score that try," Tedesco said.
"It was pretty special to win the series last year but, to win it again, is magic."
Queensland fullback Cameron Munster, who was his side's best player in the decider, said the Maroons players thought they had done enough to win.
"To be honest mate, I thought we had them. It shows you what Origin is like. If you are a little slow or lazy there, one second, that can really make you hurt and they did that tonight," he said.
"Pretty disappointed with the way it went, but in saying that, someone has got to win and someone has got to lose and unfortunately it was us."

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Another day, another report suggesting that one of Europe's footballing giants will seek to poach Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund this summer. The latest comes from Bild, who writes that Real Madrid are the most recent superclub to be interested in the 19-year-old winger.
Los Blancos have been linked with a move for Kylian Mbappe for a number of years, and while the 20-year-old Frenchman remains a favourite of Zinedine Zidane, there is an acceptance in the Spanish capital that Paris Saint-Germain are unwilling to part with their young star. Zidane, who returned to the Madrid dugout barely six weeks ago, has reportedly told club president Florentino Perez to bring in Sancho instead.
Dortmund have been telling outlets across Europe that Sancho is not for sale for months now, but Bild writes that the England international could indeed be had for the right price. The club are said to be open to a sale, should the fee reach €180 million, a price that would make Sancho the joint-second-most expensive footballer in history.

Fremantle have recalled Cam McCarthy and lock-down defender Ryan Nyhuis for Saturday night’s clash with the Western Bulldogs at Optus Stadium.
Coach Ross Lyon stuck to his word during the week that Connor Blakely would return from a serious hamstring injury through the WAFL.
The Dockers couldn’t consider suspended defender Taylin Duman and opted to bring in Nyhuis for his first AFL game since round 22 last year.
McCarthy, who has booted 10 goals this year, returns after missing the 24-point win over Greater Western Sydney due to illness, replacing Brennan Cox, who went scoreless in his first game of the season last weekend.
Cox, Bailey Banfield, Sean Darcy and Mitch Crowden were the emergencies, with David Mundy named on the ball for his 300th match.
The Bulldogs made just one change to the side that went down to Carlton last weekend, bringing in Jackson Trengove for the omitted Bailey Williams.

Premier League defeat on Arsenal.

Arsenal's hopes of securing a top-four place were dealt a blow as Wolves cruised to a 3-1 Premier League win at Molineux on Wednesday.

Any thoughts the Gunners would return to winning ways after Sunday's damaging defeat to Crystal Palace were extinguished during a 17-minute spell in the first half, which saw Wolves score three times.

Ruben Neves got them up and running with a glorious free-kick shortly before the half-hour mark, while Matt Doherty and Diogo Jota put the game to bed before the interval after some generous defending from Unai Emery's side.

Defeat leaves Arsenal – who scored a late consolation through Sokratis Papastathopoulos – a point behind fourth-place Chelsea, while Wolves are now one point ahead of Watford in seventh.
It's all over! Wolves take all three points with an emphatic victory over @Arsenal. Goals from Ruben Neves, Matt Doherty and Diogo Jota in the first half make all the difference! #WOLARS

— Wolves (@Wolves) April 24, 2019
Arsenal dominated the early exchanges but it was Wolves who carved out the first clear openings, Joao Moutinho whipping wide from 20 yards and Raul Jimenez prodding over from close range.

Neves' fourth goal of the campaign set them on their way after 28 minutes, the Portugal international curling a 25-yard free-kick inside Bernd Leno's right-hand post, before Doherty headed Jonny's cross past the flailing German goalkeeper nine minutes later.

Jota then rounded off a stunning first-half display, jinking past two defenders and squeezing a low shot through the weak resistance of the beleaguered Leno.

An Arsenal comeback failed to materialise in the second period and Jimenez should have added a fourth for the hosts after 68 minutes, the Mexico striker blazing wide after a flowing move.

Sokratis headed home Granit Xhaka's corner 10 minutes from time but the damage had been done during that blistering first-half spell as Wolves secured a first ever Premier League win against the Gunners.

What does it mean? Arsenal woeful, Wolves shining on the big stage

Arsenal were rotten and can consider themselves fortunate to still be in with a shot of qualifying for next season's Champions League with three matches left to play. A combination of haphazard defending and impotent attacking was their downfall and they will need a dramatic improvement if they are to sneak into the top four.

Wolves, meanwhile, have exceeded all expectations during their first season back in the Premier League and put in another performance that suggests they fully deserve their current status as 'the best of the rest'. Carry on like this and they could well be pushing for a top-six spot next season.

Neves thinks outside the box

The 22-year-old has scored a host of stunning goals from long distance since his arrival from Porto and he added another to his highlight reel with a glorious free-kick that gave Leno no chance. From then, Wolves did not look back.

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