Aubameyang slams CAF after feeling like a ‘hostage’ as Arsenal star & Gabon team-mates sleep in Gambia airport ahead of Afcon qualifiers
The Panthers were stranded in the airport for several hours which forced some players to sleep on the floor.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has slammed the Confederation of Africa (CAF) after being made to feel like a “hostage”, with the Arsenal captain and his Gabon team-mates having been forced to sleep in an airport ahead of an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Gambia.
Patrice Neveu’s men are scheduled to play the West African country in Bakau on Monday and they arrived at the Banjul International Airport late on Sunday night.
Upon their arrival, the Panthers were delayed at the airport with reports indicating their passports were seized despite providing their coronavirus results to the immigration officers for checks.
Arsenal striker Aubameyang detailed the frustrating wait on his Instagram story in the early hours of Monday, posting videos and photographs initially of his team-mates lounging around having had their passports taken from them by security.
But as the hours passed, the photos started to show the majority of the squad attempting to sleep on the floor of the airport, using their luggage as pillows.
Having arrived at 23:30 local time, Aubameyang began to show his frustration after waiting for three hours, posting a video at 02:31 that was accompanied by a caption that read: “Still waiting to enter Gambia, and we play at 4 pm. Nice.”
A follow-up soon after showed the team listening to music and joking, with Aubameyang adding that “they will not discourage us”.
Just before 06:00, Gabon were allowed into the country, just 10 hours before their scheduled kick-off.
“Finally in the bus. Thanks for the extra motivation, Gambia,” Aubameyang wrote.
But while there was a light-hearted aura to Aubameyang’s posts, he hit an altogether more serious note in a reply to a message on Twitter.
African football has long been criticised for a perceived lack of organisation and Aubameyang pointed the finger at CAF, while insisting that the Panthers’ morale will not be affected by the travel delays heading into Monday’s match.
“This will not demotivate us but people need to know and especially that Caf takes these responsibilities. In 2020, we want Africa to grow and this is not how we’re going to get there!!,” Aubameyang tweeted.
Three days ago, Gabon defeated Gambia 2-1 in their third Group D outing, thanks to goals from Denis Bouanga and Aubameyang. They sit at the top of their group with seven points after three matches while Gambia are second with four points.
The Panthers are on course to return to the Africa Cup of Nations in 2022 after failing to qualify for the 2019 edition in Egypt.
Cheering his teammates further, he tweeted:
I know my team
They Ready like Never before
And me they did a misTake Letting me sleep for couple Hours Today is the day!!! No Matter the result for me my team won already when i See the faces this Morning everyone is hungry hungry about Football Let’s fucking Go Panthers���
The same was reported to have happened in the preparations for the Moçambique-Cameroon game.
Neymar Penalty Keeps PSG On Course In Champions League
A nervy Paris Saint-Germain were outplayed for long spells but held on after an early Neymar penalty to beat RB Leipzig 1-0 on Tuesday and revive their Champions League campaign.
Last season’s runners-up had lost two of their opening three matches in Group H and would have been staring at an early exit from the competition had they lost again to the Germans behind closed doors at the Parc des Princes.
Yet Neymar’s 11th-minute spot-kick proved enough for PSG as Leipzig failed to convert any of the chances that came their way.
Both sides are now level on six points with two games still to come, with Manchester United three points clear at the top of the section after easing to a 4-1 victory over Istanbul Basakeshir on Tuesday.
Crucially, PSG have the head-to-head advantage over Leipzig, thanks to an away goal, if the two teams end level on points. They lost 2-1 when the teams met in Germany three weeks ago.
Thomas Tuchel’s team go to Old Trafford next and the feeling is that the French champions could still just as easily advance to the last 16 in the first place as they could fail to qualify at all.
They brushed Leipzig aside in the semi-finals of last season’s competition in Lisbon in August but collapsed worryingly in their last meeting with Julian Nagelsmann’s team after taking an early lead.
Here they again went in front and then succeeded in seeing the game out despite struggling desperately to maintain possession and stop the waves of Leipzig attacks.
The spot-kick was awarded when Marcel Sabitzer was rather harshly adjudged to have fouled Angel di Maria just inside the area.
Neymar stepped up to roll the ball home from 12 yards for his first Champions League goal of the season on what was his first start in almost a month after injury.
Alongside him, Kylian Mbappe saw his European goal drought go on — Ligue 1’s leading scorer has still not scored a Champions League goal in 2020 in eight appearances.
Nevertheless, PSG did not need their French World Cup-winning superstar to be at his best as Leipzig — who have not managed to replace Timo Werner since the Germany striker left for Chelsea — were unable to turn their dominance of possession into goals.
Dayot Upamecano saw his header tipped over by Keylor Navas and Emil Forsberg turned a Dani Olmo cross over the top in the first half.
The pressure continued at the start of the second half, but Forsberg and Sabitzer notably missed the target and the chances dried up after the home side reverted to a three-man central defence in the closing stages.
Abia State Ambassador For Sports In Boxing, Promises To Develop Grass Root Boxing
Nigeria ex international boxer and Abia State Ambassador for sports in boxing, Mazi Ikechukwu Okoronkwo has promised to give grass root boxing his undivided attention.
He stated in his residence at Enugu that he will strive harder to maintain the level of grass root Boxing development in Enugu State While developing and promoting Boxing in Abia State considering new appointment as Sports Ambassador (Boxing) in Abia State.
Mazi Comr Ikechukwu Okoronkwo stated that his Vision is to add value to Nigerian Students in the area of Boxing
As A professional, Sports development have no tribal sentiment. What is needed is talented youth.
Abia State belong to God
Liverpool Beats Leicester Despite Major Absences
Liverpool were not derailed by an injury crisis as Jurgen Klopp’s men produced a dominant display to beat Leicester 3-0 and move level on points with Premier League leaders Tottenham.
Klopp was missing seven first-team regulars through injury and top scorer Mohamed Salah due to a positive coronavirus test, but Liverpool still swept aside a Leicester team who had started the weekend on top of the table.
Jonny Evans’s own goal was just reward for the Reds’ bright start before Diogo Jota set a record-breaking start to life at Anfield.
The Portuguese international became the first Liverpool player to score in his first four home league games when he headed home Andy Robertson’s inch-perfect cross.
Kasper Schmeichel in the Leicester goal kept the score down as he made a series of second-half saves, notably from Sadio Mane and Jota, while Evans had a lucky escape as the post prevented him from scoring a second own goal.
Roberto Firmino thought he had been denied just his third league goal in 24 games when the Brazilian’s shot came back off the post and his follow-up was cleared by Marc Albrighton with just 10 millimetres of the ball not over the line.
But Firmino rounded off a brilliant team performance by rising highest to meet James Milner’s corner.
Another muscle injury suffered by Naby Keita was the only negative for Klopp on a night when his side showed they will not give up their title easily despite losing centre-backs Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez for the rest of the season.
Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers has now lost all three meetings against his former club and just like the previous meeting between the sides, which Liverpool won 4-0 in December, the Foxes were shown the gulf they have to bridge to become title contenders.
Harvey Barnes wasted one big opportunity for the visitors when he sliced wide Jamie Vardy’s cross at 1-0.
But the end to a six-game winning run sees Leicester fall back to fourth, two points off the top.
Liverpool paid tribute to former goalkeeper Ray Clemence, who died aged 72 after a long battle with prostate cancer this week, before kick-off.
Alisson Becker wore a replica of Clemence’s jersey from the 1981 European Cup final win over Real Madrid in the warm-up, while his former teammates Kenny Dalglish and Ian Rush paid their respects from the stands.
And two of Liverpool’s greatest ever players also got the chance to show their appreciation to the current crop, who surpassed a club record they set between 1978 and 1981, as Klopp’s men are now unbeaten in 64 league games at Anfield stretching back to April 2017.
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