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AKSG COMMENDS AKWA UNITED FOR AWAY DRAW TO KANO PILLARS, SEEKS INVESTIGATION INTO FANS’ HOSTILITIES

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Akwa Ibom State Government has commended the management and players of Akwa United Football Club for their zeal, passion and dedication which earned them a hard-fought point, this morning, away to hosts Kano Pillars football club of Kano.

In a statement made available in Uyo, the Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Sir Monday Uko, commended Akwa United for extending their unbeaten run in the ongoing Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) to seventeen matches, a feat never before attained by any football team in the history of league football in the country.

He has subsequently urged the League Management Company (LMC) to investigate reports of the unruly behaviour of home fans who were reported to have encroached on to the pitch and disrupted the match at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium in Kaduna on Sunday, which necessitated the remaining minutes of the match to be concluded the following morning.

With fifty points from twenty-seven matches and eleven matches left before the end of the season, Mr. Uko urged the team to approach each of the remaining matches with renewed energy and enthusiasm so as to ensure that the country’s professional league title is won by the state for the first time ever.

The statement condemned the violence that marred the encounter, describing it as unacceptable in football in the 21st century anywhere in the world.

The government wondered why Isno Pillars and their fans defied the directive of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) which directs clubs to execute the remaining matches of the season behind closed doors in line with WHO/NCDC/PTF guidelines for the prevention of the spread of Covid-19 and called for an urgent review of the circumstances which surrounded the impasse.

The government said that Akwa United players exhibited the Dakkada philosophy of the state, through their resilience, hardwork and faith in God, describing them as worthy ambassadors of the state.

“Akwa Ibom people are notably peaceful, hospitable and law-abiding, and I am proud that despite the provocations, my players maintained their calm and resisted the pressure of being betrayed by their emotions”.

The Commissioner also commended the centre referee from Lagos State, Adebimpe Quadri, who defied the stampede and made the right calls throughout the match which could only be concluded in two days.

“It is unfortunate that at a time football in other climes is becoming a serious business venture, spinning revenue and economic opportunities, we still have a situation matches are disrupted by home fans who chase the referees and visiting players around the pitch, in order to win at all cost.”

He maintained that, “football is one game that always unites Nigerians and should be used to engender unity and love in the country.”

Akwa United will next play hosts to Adamawa United behind closed doors at Godswill Akpabio stadium, Uyo, this Saturday, June 19 in a match day twenty-eight fixture of the NPFL.

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See the Moment Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger Bites Paul Pogba during France’s Euro 2020 clash with Germany

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There were bizarre scenes at the end of the first half of France’s Euro 2020 clash with Germany as Antonio Rudiger appeared to try to bite Paul Pogba’s back.

The World Cup holders secured a 1-0 win in Tuesday’s match in Munich courtesy of an own goal from Mats Hummels, with the hosts struggling to break down France’s stubborn defence and looking vulnerable on the break.

Rudiger appeared to show his frustration just before the half-time whistle, trying to take a chomp out of Pogba as the two players tussled

The Frenchman gave a belated scream and appealed to the referee, but the incident was not looked at further by VAR and Rudiger escaped unpunished

‘When you see Pogba’s reaction, it felt like a bite,’ said Patrick Vieira on ITV Sport during the half-time interval.

‘But I don’t really understand what he was trying to do there really.’

Roy Keane chimed in: ‘I think it was more of a nibble than a bite. It wasn’t a proper bite was it? Silly thing to do though obviously.’

Ian Wright was equally confused by the incident, adding: ‘If he’s bitten him there he’s going to flinch.

‘He’s not flinched at all. He’s not flinched there. I don’t know what’s happened there. Can’t see it.’

Rudiger’s bite brought back memories of Uruguay’s Luis Suarez taking a chunk out of Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

The then Liverpool striker was handed a four-month ban for his actions, though it was the third time he had bitten an opponent and Rudiger is unlikely to face such an extreme punishment if the incident is reviewed again after the match.

Prior to the game, Rudiger had said Germany needed to ‘be a little dirty’ in order to stop France, but seemed to go a little overboard with his use of the dark arts.

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