Sports (53)

Liverpool Deserve Premier League Title, Says Former Man Utd Hero Rooney

The ex-Red Devil and Everton star believes their Merseyside rivals deserves to win the championship
Wayne Rooney believes Liverpool deserve to win the Premier League title and insists the campaign needs to be completed to decide promotion, relegation and European qualification.

The Premier League season has been thrown into doubt by the coronavirus pandemic with the campaign postponed until at least May 2 because of the global health crisis.

With Liverpool only needing six points to claim their first league title in 30 years, the former Manchester United and Everton star feels the Reds have earned the honour and it should not be taken away by a season cancellation.

The Derby County skipper feels the Premier League season will eventually be completed once the Covid-19 saga relents and it could compromise next campaign.

"Liverpool will win the Premier League. [They] have been fantastic. They have put so much work in. They deserve this title. Can you imagine waiting 30 years and then having it taken away like this? The right decision has been made," Rooney said in his weekly column in The Times .

"It’s also right in terms of promotion and relegation and Champions League places."

These issues are so big for the clubs involved that I imagine there would be a lot of legal fights if the season was just abandoned. The fair thing is to finish 2019-20 — even if we have to lose next season in the process.

"It wouldn’t surprise me if finishing the season takes until the end of 2020. Football, like every other industry, is in unknown territory and, just like every other industry, has to listen to the advice and take all necessary precautions. For me, that rules out finishing the season behind closed doors."

Sheffied United boss Chris Wilder has a similar opinion to Rooney , as he hopes the season will be finished with his team in contention to qualify for European competition.

Coronavirus has wreaked havoc in the football world across the globe with most leagues and competitions postponed .

Real Madrid president Lorenzo Sanz passed away from the illness on Saturday, while several big-name stars including Juventus trio Paulo Dybala, Blaise Matuidi and Daniel Rugani have tested positive.

*Source:Sky Sports*

'It Hasn't Been A Surprise' - Barcelona Star Rakitic Felt Coronavirus Chaos Coming After Naples Visit

The Croatian midfielder could see evidence of the virus' impact on Italy and isn't surprised by the restrictions in place worldwide Barcelona star Ivan Rakitic noted the effects of coronavirus during the team's visit to Napoli in the Champions League last month and says he knew the worst was yet to come.

Spain is in a complete shutdown with people confined to their houses because of the pandemic and the nation has suffered 1720 virus-related deaths including 394 in the past 24 hours.

Rakitic's Barca visited Italian city Naples on February 25 to take on the Blues in the elite European competition's  round of 16 just as Covid-19 was starting to affect the country.

The 32-year-old got the feeling the situation was going to become a lot more serious and has now urged the public to stay in their houses - with Spain's state of emergency extended for another 15 days on Sunday.

"It hasn't been a surprise. When we went to Naples (in the Champions League last month), people were talking about it a lot in Italy and I said to Xavi (the team doctor) that this would get worse," Rakitic told Barca TV in an interview from his home.

"Now it's the best thing we can do. I would like to go out on the street and walk about, but it's not necessary. We have to be indoors. I don't like it, but it's necessary and important."

More 5400 people have died in Italy because of the virus, with nearly 60,000 cases spread throughout the country.

The pandemic has shut down nearly all football worldwide including Spain's La Liga , which was suspended for two weeks on March 12 - a period that is highly likely to be extended.

Despite not knowing when he would see his Barca team-mates again, Rakitic was optimistically looking forward to returning to training, although he admitted it would be difficult for players.

"It will be strange seeing each other again at the training ground and playing again. Let's hope we are in the best condition," Rakitic said.

"Obviously, we will lose some adrenaline. It won't be like in the summer, when you have the whole season ahead. Almost impossible to return at 100 per cent after a month, but there will be no lack of desire."



By Staffer- Rhodesia Times

The country's football governing body 'FAZ' has announced the postponement of ABSA Cup quarterfinals that were scheduled for this weekend at Nkoloma Stadium in their capital city Lusaka due to coronavirus.

Two cases of the pandemic have today been confirmed in Zambia by Minister of Health Chitalu Chilufya.

ABSA Cup quarterfinalists are Zesco United, Nkana, Forest Rangers, Napsa Stars, Kabwe Warriors, Green Eagles, Kitwe United and Young Green Eagles.

FAZ League Manager Brian Mulenga has since notified the affected clubs about the development.

'After receiving guidance from the Ministry of Health we regret to inform that the ABSA Cup quarterfinals are postponed to a date to be communicated; Mulenga wrote in a circular to clubs.

‘In view of the current situation in the our country  vis a vis the coronavirus we are unable to go forward with the ABSA Cup as public events of this magnitude are no longer tenable,’ Mulenga stated.

Zesco are the defending local football champions of the ABSA Cup.


Inter are one of many top clubs around Europe following Turkish talent Omer Beyaz, according to a report from today’s paper edition of the Turkish newspaper Fotospor.

The report details how both Manchester City and Manchester United, as well as Juventus, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Inter are all keeping a close eye on 16-year-old Turkish forward Omer Beyaz. The teenager is contracted to Turkish side Fenerbahçe until 2021.

Beyaz has made 14 appearances for the Fenerbahçe Under-19 squad so far this season, for a total of 1058 minutes. In that time, he’s scored two goals and impressed with his quick passing and good movements in the final third. The Turkish teenager was also called up for two first team games, against Denizlispor and Konyaspor, although he failed to get off of the bench in either game.

Inter, like many top clubs around Europe, are often looking for the next young talent, with the Nerazzurri showing that they aren’t afraid to trust young players, such as in the case of Sebastiano Esposito.

*Source:Rhodesia Times*

For the first time in Zambian Women’s football history, Shepolopolo are the first female side to qualify to the Olympics.

Shepolopolo qualified to the 2020 Olympics in Japan following a 2-1 home win over Cameroon.

Bruce Mwape’s side advanced to the Summer Olympics 4-4 on aggregate on away goals rule after overturning a 3-2 away losing Yaoundé on March 5.

Mary Makawapila and Hellen Mubanga scored the critical goals in the first half to send Zambia through to the debut Olympiads.

Nchout Njoya Araja’s late goal gave the hosts a last minute scare but Shepolopolo held on.

Shepolopolo head to the Olympics for the first time since the men’s team did so at the Seoul Olympics in 1988.


Source : Lusakatimes

Zesco United’s failure to win in midweek has seen the current champions slump further in the Zambian Super League title race and should add confidence to those other clubs chasing glory in the 2019/20 season.

Zesco were held 0-0 by Lumwana Radiants and now astonishingly have just three wins in their last 20 games in all competitions, but are somehow clinging on in the Super League title race.

That is because of their magnificent start to the campaign where they won their opening nine matches, but those days now seem a distant memory as they battle for victories.

They will have the chance to get back on track on Sunday when they host Green Buffaloes, and can go into the game with some confidence having won their last three meetings with the army side.

Also on Sunday, Buildcon will seek to arrest their alarming slide that has seen them sink to 15th, having taken just one point from the last 18 available. They will host relegation-threatened Nakambala Leopards at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola.

Super League leaders Forest Rangers are not in action as their opponents Zanaco are involved in CAF Confederation Cup action, which gives second-placed Green Eagles the chance to move to the summit when they host third-placed NAPSA Stars on Saturday.


Source Supersports

Kalusha Bwalya has failed the integrity test in his bid to stand for the FAZ presidency during the March 28 elective annual general meeting.

The battle at the top of the Zambia Super Eagles has tightened in recent weeks with just two points separating the leading for sides, setting up a thrilling run-in in the final third of the season.

Leaders Green Eagles will feel the heat from the chasing pack and will therefore expect victory when they host mid-table Lumwana Radiants on Saturday in Choma.

Champions Zesco United returned to winning ways and Green Eagles climbed to the top of the Zambia Super League in another big weekend of action in the race for the title.

Zesco left it late but two goals in the final three minutes secured a 2-0 victory over bottom side Mufulira Wanderers for what would have been a stunning draw.


LUSAKA Lawyer LEWIS MOSHO has given FAZ President ANDREW KAMANGA, a 24 hours ultimatum to respond to allegations of theft or his firm will proceed to privately prosecute him.

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