Saturday, 25 March 2017

South Africa achieve record unbeaten run

Johannesburg (AFP) – South Africa stretched an unbeaten run to a record 16 matches Saturday with a 3-1 friendly international victory over Guinea-Bissau in Durban. 

Kermit Erasmus and Andile Jali converted penalties and Percy Tau scored on debut for Bafana Bafana (“The Boys”) at a wet and windy Moses Mabhida Stadium.

Djalo “Aldair” Balde scored for Guinea-Bissau, whose qualification for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations ranks among the greatest shocks in the 60-year competition.

The South African unbeaten streak began in October 2015 with a victory in Angola and includes nine victories and seven draws and a 31-14 goal tally.

Between 1994 and 1996, South Africa went unbeaten in 15 matches before losing a Cup of Nations group game to Egypt in Soweto.

Erasmus scored on 36 minutes and Tau on 69 minutes before “Aldair” set up a tense finish by halving the deficit 12 minutes from time.

Substitute Jali netted a minute from time to put beyond doubt the outcome of the first meeting between South Africa and Guinea-Bissau.

The west African “Wild Dogs”, who held hosts Gabon and lost narrowly to eventual champions Cameroon in their Cup of Nations debut, rarely play friendlies due to scarce financial resources.

Brazilian Roberto “Beto” Bianchi made a disappointing debut as Angola coach with an own-goal sealing a 2-0 defeat by Mozambique in Maputo.

Clesio Bauque put the Mambas (“Snakes”) ahead on 57 minutes and Herenilson conceded the own-goal 17 minutes from time.  

Angola, who competed at the 2006 World Cup in Germany but are now ranked 45th of 54 African football nations, play South Africa Tuesday in East London.

Belgium-based Mbwana Samatta from Europa League quarter-finalists Genk struck early and late goals to secure Tanzania a 2-0 win over Botswana in Dar es Salaam.

The post South Africa achieve record unbeaten run appeared first on World Soccer Talk.



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Man Utd and Liverpool Set to Lock Horns Over Atletico Madrid Defender This Summer

Perennial rivals Manchester United and Liverpool are set for a transfer battle over Atletico Madrid defender Jose Gimenez, according to the ​Mirror. The 22-year-old is struggling to make an impact at the Vicente Calderon this season, and has seen his game time limited by manager Diego Simeone, mostly due to the form of Diego Godin and Stefan Savic. Gimenez has only managed 10 starts in all competitions for the Rojiblancos so far in their campaign, and is thought to be frustrated with his...

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VIDEO Bosnia-Herzegovina 5 – 0 Gibraltar (World Cup Qualifiers) Highlights

VIDEO Bosnia-Herzegovina 5 – 0 Gibraltar (World Cup Qualifiers) Highlights http://ift.tt/eA8V8J

VIDEO Sweden 4 – 0 Belarus (World Cup Qualifiers) Highlights

VIDEO Sweden 4 – 0 Belarus (World Cup Qualifiers) Highlights http://ift.tt/eA8V8J

Sweden cruise, unbeaten Swiss on track for Russia

Paris (AFP) – Sweden crushed Belarus 4-0 to keep the pressure on their rivals in qualifiers for the 2018 World Cup as Switzerland remain unbeaten with a 1-0 win over Latvia.

Sweden now have ten points from five games to go provisionally top of Group A ahead of France who travel to Luxembourg later Saturday with little room for manoeuvre for group rivals the Netherlands, third with seven points, who play Bulgaria.

The Swedes overpowered Belarus with visiting goalkeeper Andrei Gorbunov having a nightmare in Solna as he bundled in two of the goals.

Emil Forsberg scored twice, the first from the penalty spot after Marcus Berg was brought down by Igor Shitov in the box on 19 minutes.

The Leipzig striker got the second four minutes after the break when the ball slipped though Gorbunov’s hands with the goalkeeper also fumbling in Marcus Berg’s third (57) before Isaac Kiese Thelin (78) completed the rout.

In Group H, Bosnia-Herzegovina also went on a goal spree with a 5-0 win over minnows Gibraltar, who have now conceded 22 goals in five games.

Vedad Ibisevic scored in either half (4, 43) with Avdija Vrsajevic (52), Edin Visca (56) and Ermin Bicakcic (90+3) leaving Gibraltar with no chance.

Bosnia join second-placed Greece on 10 points, but the 2004 European champions later face Group H leaders Belgium who are looking to keep their perfect record intact.

Cyprus and Estonia remain in the bottom half of Group H after a goalless draw in Nicosia.

In Geneva, Switzerland kept their perfect record in Group B with a 1-0 win over Latvia.

Substitute Josip Drmic scored after 66 minutes just after coming on to give the Swiss a fifth win in as many games to stay top with 15 points.

Group B favourites Portugal, the European champions, who the Swiss beat 2-0 in their opening game, host Hungary later Saturday.

Tailenders Andorra got their first point of the competition with a 0-0 draw against the Faroe Islands.

The post Sweden cruise, unbeaten Swiss on track for Russia appeared first on World Soccer Talk.



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VIDEO Switzerland 1 – 0 Latvia (World Cup Qualifiers) Highlights

VIDEO Switzerland 1 – 0 Latvia (World Cup Qualifiers) Highlights http://ift.tt/eA8V8J

Belgium v Greece: World Cup 2018 qualifier – live!

VIDEO Liverpool legends 4-3 Real Madrid legends (Friendly) Highlights

VIDEO Liverpool legends 4-3 Real Madrid legends (Friendly) Highlights http://ift.tt/eA8V8J

Belgium v Greece: World Cup 2018 qualifier – live!

Bolton and Portsmouth tighten grips around automatic promotion

Coventry City sealed their first back-to-back wins in five months while Exeter City produced a stunning comeback with three late goals to draw with Yeovil

Bolton Wanderers took another telling step towards automatic promotion to the Championship after second-half goals from Mark Beevers and Adam Le Fondre saw off Shrewsbury Town 2-0 at New Meadow. In doing so Phil Parkinson’s side closed the gap to the league leaders Sheffield United to four points after the Blades were held in a 1-1 draw at Oldham.

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Bolton and Portsmouth tighten grips around automatic promotion

Coventry City sealed their first back-to-back wins in five months while Exeter City produced a stunning comeback with three late goals to draw with Yeovil

Bolton Wanderers took another telling step towards automatic promotion to the Championship after second-half goals from Mark Beevers and Adam Le Fondre saw off Shrewsbury Town 2-0 at New Meadow. In doing so Phil Parkinson’s side closed the gap to the league leaders Sheffield United to four points after the Blades were held in a 1-1 draw at Oldham.

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Chelsea Transfer Roundup: Abramovich has transfer agreement for world class Man Utd target

Chelsea Transfer Roundup: Abramovich has transfer agreement for world class Man Utd target - originally posted on Sportslens.com

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is looking to fend off Inter Milan’s interest in Antonio Conte by signing world-class players for the Italian at Chelsea.

According to reports, the Russian billionaire recently agreed on a deal with Barcelona for their Brazilian winger Neymar. The Blues were willing to pay £155.5m for the Barcelona star but Conte has blocked the move and is looking to pursue other targets.

Earlier it was reported that Conte is unhappy with Chelsea’s transfer policy and therefore this could be Roman’s move to win over the manager.

Tuttosport say that Conte informed Abramovich of his decision after the Premier League win over Stoke City last week.

tuttosport-240317

Neymar has been linked with Manchester United in the past as well and it will be interesting to see what happens at the end of this season. The Catalan giants are looking to sign Dybala this summer and that could force Neymar to switch clubs unless he receives assurances over regular playing time. It is unlikely that the likes of Messi and Suarez will be benched to accommodate a new signing.

In other news, Chelsea have no intentions of losing Eden Hazard this summer and are planning to offer him a bumper new deal.

Telegraph’s report adds that the Belgian is ready to commit to the Blues and has informed his friends that he wants to stay at Stamford Bridge.

Spanish giants Real Madrid are interested in Hazard and Courtois but it seems that they might have to pursue alternate targets now. Courtois has confirmed that he does not intend to join Los Blancos this summer and will sign a new deal with the Premier League leaders.

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VIDEO: New BFF, Jesse? Man Utd Star Caught Humorously Body Popping With Saints Ace on England Duty

​Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford, look away now, for Manchester United team-mate Jesse Lingard seemingly has a new BFF. The winger was caught on camera messing around with fellow wideman and Southampton star Nathan Redmond during a recent England training session ahead of the Three Lions' clash with Lithuania on Sunday. Lingard is known for his over-exuberant handshakes with world record signing Pogba, while the 23-year-old is known to be really chummy with striker Rashford at Old Trafford, but...

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Barcelona Legend Patrick Kluivert Allegedly Owed Criminal Gang €1m in Gambling Debts

​Former Barcelona and Ajax striker Patrick Kluivert is alleged to have owed as much as €1M to a criminal gang due to gambling debts he built up several years ago.  Reports in Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant (via ​Marca) suggest that Kluivert has been called before police to provide a witness testimony regarding an ongoing investigation into a criminal organisation thought to have been involved in match-fixing.  Shock as ex-manager racks up nearly £900k gambling debt betting on club he worked for...

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Séamus Coleman’s horrific injury demands rethink of misplaced tolerance | Daniel Taylor

The broken leg suffered by the Republic of Ireland defender against Wales is a lesson for anyone who thinks players should be able to get away with more in certain fixtures

It doesn’t get any easier, no matter how many times you watch it. The way he lands, his instinctive reaction to assess the damage, the split second where you just hope your first suspicions might be wrong. But then Shane Long is cradling Séamus Coleman’s head and that is the point when you don’t need confirmation from any doctor or press officer. You know it’s snapped, you know that’s him done.

And, deep down, you know this is one of those occasions – “a good old British game”, to use the jarring words of Chris Coleman – when a certain level of aggression is considered OK, mandatory even, and the people demanding it usually just assume everybody will be able to walk off at the end. “Heavy-metal football,” the Irish Times called it: all thrash, not enough melody. The kind of game, in other words, when players do cross the line, behaviour-wise, and the risk of getting hurt is higher than usual – often wrapped up in the guise of “passion”.

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