Siasia, Akanni lament as COVID-19 stalls CAS hearing

first_imgRelatedPosts COVID-19: NCAA to revoke erring airlines licence over non-compliance FRSC to Schools: We’ll arrest, prosecute drivers who flout COVID-19 rules FG sensitises stakeholders on safe school reopening template A former Super Eagles Head Coach, Samson Siasia, is lamenting the postponement of his match-fixing allegation hearing slated for Lausanne, Switzerland on March 19 due to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic. The disease, which is currently ravaging Europe, US, Asia and other parts of the world, has forced the Court of Arbitration for Sport to postpone Siasia’s invitation to the European country indefinitely. Speaking in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos on Thursday, Siasia described the postponement of his invitation as sad. According to him, being well and healthy in these trying times is more important. COVID-19, known also as coronavirus, has struck the global community with Europe currently having the lion’s share of people killed so far by the virus. It will be recalled that FIFA had handed a lifetime ban on Siasia, 52, in August 2019 for alleged match-fixing. Switzerland is currently on lockdown because of the disease and was listed among 13 countries whose citizens had been banned by the Federal Government from entering Nigeria. Siasia said: “It is sad, honestly, but there is nothing anybody can do at this moment other than to pray that this virus disappears. “Being alive is the most important thing, although being able to work is important, but we have to stay alive first to make the money.” Siasia, however, pleaded with CAS to grant him permission to continue coaching, pending when his case would be heard after the March 19 scheduled date for the hearing. He said: “I think it will be kind and fair of them if CAS will allow me to coach, pending when moving around will be safe again.” In the same vein, Siasia’s associate, Waidi Akanni, who was also Siasia’s former teammate during their active days as footballers, urged CAS to allow Siasia to continue with his coaching career, pending a new date for the hearing. Akanni said: “Nobody knows when the coronavirus will be eradicated. “That’s like putting his life on hold. “This is sad as it is, but the only fair thing to do is to allow him coach until a new date is fixed. “This is his life. “Most likely the only thing he knows how to do. “We can only appeal that he is given a soft-landing until the coronavirus thing blows away.” Siasia was a 1994 Africa Cup of Nations winner with the Super Eagles in Tunisia. He also played in Nigeria’s maiden appearance at USA ’94 World Cup, where he scored a goal against a Diego Maradona-led Albiceleste of Argentina. The former striker played over 50 times for Nigeria, scoring 16 goals. As a coach, he led Nigeria’s U-20 and U-23 sides to continental successes in 2005 and 2015 respectively. He also guided the U-20s to a runner-up finish at the 2005 World Youth Championships (as it was then known) in the Netherlands. Siasia is the most decorated African football coach at the Olympics, winning silver at the Beijing Games in 2008 and bronze at the 2016 Games in Rio. NAN.Tags: CASCOVID-19Federal GovernmentFIFASamson Siasialast_img read more

Ferguson bows out in style – Yorke

first_img Press Association “I’ve seen Sir Alex Ferguson on Monday at a charity game,” the former Trinidad and Tobago international told Sky Sports News. “He was in good spirits but the rumours were really strong around the place that he was going to retire and there was a big announcement supposed to be happening tomorrow and not today. “I think probably the fact of the club floating on the stock market meant this decision needed to come out very quickly. But the people within the football club knew this was likely to happen this season.” He added: “And I think with his hip replacement (booked in for late July), with David Gill going as well, that sort of pushed him to say ‘this might be the best time for me to retire’.” Yorke expects there to be a strange atmosphere in the immediate wake of Ferguson’s departure from the helm. “He’s been such a focal point at the football club,” he said. “He’s taken Manchester United to the level they are at right now. “It’s a shock to the system because he’s been there every day. He’s the one person when you go into the football club he’s always there. For him not to be there from the start of next season, it’s not going to be right around the football club and it will take some getting used to.” Ferguson, of course, will be bowing out on a high having regained the Premier League title after being pipped to the crown by rivals Manchester City in dramatic circumstances on the final day of last term. “He has very, very high standards and it’s all about winning trophies and breaking records with Sir Alex Ferguson,” Yorke continued. “But there’s more to the man. How they lost the Premier League last season – that would have hurt him immensely. Certainly losing it to Manchester City, that would have hurt worse than anything else. “He wanted to regain it and he’s managed to do that in a great way and with a great style of play.” center_img Former Manchester United striker Dwight Yorke, who played under Sir Alex Ferguson between 1998 and 2002 and was part of the 1999 treble-winning side, feels a combination of factors led the Scot to call it a day at the age of 71.last_img read more