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Afcon 2019: Tanzania lack experience, character and maturity – Amuneke



The Taifa Stars’ journey in the competition came to an end after losing to their East African neighbours in Cairo

Tanzania coach Emmanuel Amuneke was left frustrated after his side surrendered their lead twice in their 3-2 loss to Kenya in Thursday’s Africa Cup of Nations Group C clash.

The Taifa Stars started the encounter with their East Africa neighbours brilliantly after Simon Msuwa opened the scoring, six minutes into the game.

Michael Olunga brought the Harambee Stars back into contention with an improvised overhead kick in the 39th minute but captain Mbwana Samata restored Tanzania’s lead just before the half time break.

However, the Taifa Stars lost momentum in the second half as Johanna Omolo equalised for Kenya before Michael Olunga sealed the victory with his second goal of the game.

The defeat means Tanzania are eliminated from the competition after also losing their opening game to Senegal.

Tanzania’s coach, the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations winner with Nigeria and former Barcelona player, Emmanuel Amuneke expressed his disappointment with the attitudes of his players in the encounter.

“The reality is in a game of football if you don’t know how to manage the game to your advantage, you pay for it,” Amuneke told Goal.

“We started on a very good note, scoring first then leading the game towards half time, but there were a lot of crazy things. we committed a lot of mistakes, the second goal, the Kenya equaliser, this is what we have practised over and over, knowing they have dropped the ball in the first place.

“As a coach you are helpless, you feel you want to help them, but you cannot turn it around. Most players play in the Tanzanian league, we lack experience, it’s a good thing we came to this Afcon, and it’s a good thing for Tanzanian football, to open their eyes. The truth is that at the moment we’re not in a position to compete.

“Our target, we are privileged to have qualified for the Afcon, after so many years we’ve missed out and now we’re here after all these years. Every team wants to do well, every team wants to go far, but you could see, we’re still lacking a lot of experience, character, maturity.”

With many of the players plying their trades in the Tanzania League, Amuneke believes his players need to play abroad for exposure and experience to help the national team grow.

“The Tanzania league has two of the best teams in Tanzania – Simba and Yanga – they have 22 teams but the reality is not about the league, the truth is that the players need exposure, they need to play in places where they can grow and compete with the other players in Africa,” he continued.

“We’re not being harsh with our players, just realistic. In football, if you are lovers of football, following football, you need a lot of experience, to be in a position to compete, and the reality is that we don’t have the ability to compete with the rest.

“For us, being in the Afcon is an eye-opener for us, a big experience and a big achievement. You can fall in football, but if you believe in it and you stick to it, you can bounce back again. It’s not about how talented you are, players must know what to do when you have the ball, when you don’t have the ball. From the second goal, it was the wrong ball, the wrong moment, and in that second we lost the goal.”

Amuneke wants his side, who are making their first appearance in the finals for 39 years, to learn from the mistakes that led to their early exit from the tournament.

“Being here alone can inspire us. No one believed that Tan would qualify, and today we are here. Unfortunately for us we’re not in a position to win our games, but it’s an experience,” he added.

“We go back and we look at our players, players we can bring in, players who can help the team. Players who can have some responsibility then you can say you are growing. I always say that what is good today in football is backdated tomorrow. If you never grow, you will never be in a position to correct it.”

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Napoli Mock Osimhen for Penalty Miss, Get Knocks




Serie A champions, Napoli, are under serious attack from football followers, who deemed a video posted on the club’s official TikTok handle as mocking Nigeria international Victor Osimhen for missing a penalty on Sunday.

Osimhen, who was the club’s top scorer last season as the Parthenopeans won the Scudetto after three decades, missed the penalty that denied Napoli a chance to win all three points against Bologna on Sunday.

And with just four minutes to the end of the game, the Super Eagles striker was substituted for Giovanni Simeone.

Not happy with the substitution, Osimhen expressed his anger at Napoli coach Rudi Garcia as he walked away to the bench.

Osimhen has since sent his apologies to the coach and his teammates over his action but on Tuesday, the official TikTok of the team, which had posted a video three days ago referring to Osimhen as a coconut head, posted another video trolling the Nigerian for missing the penalty against Bologna.

The action by the club’s social media handle has seen the football faithful from across the world attack the club.

“That video of @sscnapoli trolling @victorosimhen9 over his penalty miss (which I won’t share) is in very poor taste for a player who continually gives 100% for that club. Everyone involved in that decision, from ideation through approval to execution, should be fired, pronto!” Nigerian journalist Collin Udoh wrote.

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Glo Felicitates with Tobi Amusan on Third Diamond League Win




Leading provider of digital and telecommunications services, Globacom, has congratulated its brand ambassador, Tobi Amusan, on her victory in the women’s 100-meter hurdles at the Diamond League final in Oregon, United States.

Amusan won the race on Sunday night in 12.33 seconds to win the Diamond League for the third time in a row. She captured her maiden Diamond League trophy in 2021 and had successfully defended it in 2022 in Zurich, Switzerland.

Globacom, which applauded Amusan for the remarkable accomplishment, said in a statement on Tuesday that her triumph, “despite her recent setback, has demonstrated that she is a bright professional who still has a lot to give the world of athletics”.

“With the third Diamond League trophy in her kitty, Amusan remains a true African ambassador at the world stage and an inspiration to millions of youths who look up to her as a role model”, Globacom said.

The company praised Amusan for embodying the resilience and work spirit of the Nigerian people and challenged her to keep progressing, win more laurels, and create a lasting impression on the world of athletics stage.

Amusan has now won three 100m hurdles championships, making her the second woman in Diamond League history to do so after Dawn Nelson-Harper.

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AFCON: Super Eagles Wallop STP 6-0, As Osimhen Grabs Hattrick




Victor Osimhen scored thrice as the Super Eagles dispatched Sao Tome and Principe 6-0 in a 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier on Sunday.

The strikes took the Napoli hit man’s tally to 10 in the qualification series as the rampant Super Eagles soared over a helpless foe at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.

Osimhen opened the score sheet for the Super Eagles in the 13 minute when he slotted past the Sao Tome goaltender. Atalanta’s Ademola Lookman scored three minutes from the half-hour mark to double Nigeria’s lead.

While Coach Jose Peseiro’s side sought a third goal, the teams headed into the tunnel for half-time with the score line pegged at 2-0.

On resumption, the 2013 African champions continued to enjoy the lion’s share of possession, launching attack after attack.

Their dominance eventually paid off as in form Nottingham Forest striker Taiwo Awoniyi beat the Sao Tome goalkeeper from close range to triple Nigeria’s advantage in the 51st minute.

Not done, Osimhen scored his second of the day in the 69th minute and had his hattrick ten minutes later to take his tally in the qualification series to 10.

Samuel Chukwueze’s introduction around the 72th-minute mark added more firepower to the Eagles’ attacking line. The AC Milan man wasted no time to score.

Chukwueze’s 85th-minute strike sealed one of the biggest wins for the Super Eagles in recent times. Nigeria had earlier defeated Sao The Falcons and True Parrots Team 10-0 in the reverse fixture last June, taking the aggregate score to 16-0.

With the win, Nigeria sealed their spot as the winners of Group A in the qualifiers for the Ivory Coast tournament billed for next year.

Nigeria played six matches en route to qualification for the competition. They lost one and other games to finish as group leaders with 15 points. Their only defeat was against Guinea Bissau who pipped them 1-0 earlier in the year.

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