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Messi Hails Ronaldo, Tips Juventus To Win Champions League Trophy

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Barcelona ace, Lionel Messi has said that Juventus are clear favourites to win this season’s UEFA Champions League now that they have forward, Cristiano Ronaldo.

Ronaldo left Madrid as their all-time highest goalscorer to join the Italian giants earlier this summer in a 100-million-euro deal.

Messi believes that Madrid is less strong without Ronaldo, adding that he was surprised by the Portuguese’s decision to leave the Santiago Bernabeu to joined Juve.

“Real Madrid is less strong without Cristiano Ronaldo in their squad, as obviously, he is one of the best in the world,” Messi told Catalunya Radio.

“Juventus are a clear favourite to win the Champions League now they have Cristiano Ronaldo. I was surprised by his decision, as I didn’t expect him to leave Madrid or go to Juventus. It’s a very good team.”

Messi added, “We’ve gone out in the quarter-finals for three years running and the last one was the most painful for the way it came about. We have to aim for the trophy because we can do it.

“We missed out because of details, in the Pep Guardiola era against Inter, and Chelsea. Other clubs are strong, have a lot of money and sign many players, like the two Manchesters, Chelsea, Real Madrid, PSG, various Italian clubs, they all have a lot of money.

“Plus when things don’t go our way, we struggle to react, as we did against Roma. We did not react the right way during the game.”

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Amaju Pinnick In Trouble As FG Slams N4bn, $8,400 Fraud Charges On NFF President

Gbemileke Ajayi

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The Federal Government has charged the President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Amaju Pinnick and four others with alleged misappropriation of $8,400 belonging to the football body.

In a 17-count charge, marked FHC/ABJ/CR/93/2019, filed before the Federal High Court in Abuja on Tuesday, the money was said to have been paid by the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) to the NFF as appearance fees in the group state of the Russia 2018 World Cup.

Named with Pinnick in the charge, are NFF Secretary, Sunusi Mohammed; the 1st Vice-President, Seyi Akinwumi; the 2nd Vice-President, Shehu Dikko and an Executive member, Yusuff Fresh.

The defendants were also accused of “moving dishonestly and intentionally the sum of about N4bn” belonging to the NFF without the consent of the NFF.

The five are also accused, in the charge filed by the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property (SPIP), led by Okoi Obono-Obla, of failing and neglecting to declare their assets.

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AFCON 2019: Nigeria Draws Guinea, Madagascar, Burundi [Full Fixtures]

Gbemileke Ajayi

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The Super Eagles of Nigeria have been drawn against Guinea, Madagascar, and Burundi in Group B of the African Cup of Nations, Egypt 2019.

The Gernot Rohr lads will begin their campaign at the the championship they won in South Africa i. 2013 against Burundi in the group opener.

In other groups, host Egypt will battle DR Congo, Uganda and Zimbabwe in Group A, former champions Senegal and Algeria will have Kenya and giant killers Tanzania to slug it with in Group C.

Morocco, Cote d’Ivoire South Africa and Namibia were drawn in Group D which tagged as the competition Group of Death.

North African champions, Tunisia, Mali, Mauritania and Angola are up for Group E qualifying tickets.

Cameroon will also have Ghana, Benin and Guinea-Bissau to contend with Group F of the tournament.

Group A

Egypt
DR Congo
Uganda
Zimbabwe

Group B

Nigeria
Guinea
Madagascar
Burundi

Group C

Senegal
Algeria
Kenya
Tanzania

Group D

Morocco
Cote d’Ivoire
South Africa
Namibia

Group E

Tunisia
Mali
Mauritania
Angola

Group F

Cameroon
Ghana
Benin
Guinea-Bissau

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BIG STORY

Give Me £500,000-A-Week And I’ll Snub Real Madrid —- Pogba Tells Man Utd

Peter Okunoren

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Manchester United are reportedly ready to open talks with Paul Pogba over a new contract, the UK Sun reports.

But the French midfielder is going to test Old Trafford chiefs desire to keep him, by demanding a total wage packet of £500,000-a-week.

It is believed Pogba wants parity as the club’s highest paid player with Alexis Sanchez, as the eye-watering deal handed to Sanchez 15 months ago, is coming back to bite executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward once again.

Sanchez’s huge contract has changed the game at United, especially given the struggles suffered by the South American since joining last January.

Pogba’s demands will be strengthened by public admissions from Real Madrid boss, Zinedine Zidane, that he would like his compatriot at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Pogba has two years left on his current £300,000-a-week deal, with a further 12-month option.

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