Alain Traore’s fine second half strike handed Burkina Faso third place at the 2017 CAF Africa Cup of Nations as they beat Ghana 1-0 yesterday night at Stade Port-Gentil. Ghana had a bright start in the first five minutes and Agyemang Badu missed a header from close range after a great cross from the left, as the Burkinabe were still asleep.Despite the Stallions’ failure to ignite in the opening stages of the encounter, it was Alain Traore who tried a long curling shot from a set piece in the 13th minute, but goalkeeper Richard Ofori collected with ease. Four minutes later, Paulo Duarte’ men took another shot through Aristide Bance as he beat his man, but his shot went wide.With five minutes remaining in the first half, Prejuce Nakoulma produced a great run, beating three defenders in the box, but his final shot was disappointing as it went wide from the right of Ofori’s posts. One minute to the hour mark, Jordan Ayew delivered a brilliant set piece from the right wing into the box, only for Tekpetey to see his strong header going inches over the crossbar. In the last 12 minutes, the match opened up as Ofori produced a sweet save to deny Cyrille Bayala resulting from a brilliant counter attack. The keeper parried the shot away and the rebound was off target by Alain Traore.However, with two minutes to go, Traore produced a fantastic finish from a set piece on the right flank. He curled his shot to the far corner, beating Ofori.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
Football writer and Citi Sports contributor, Terence Jude Wood, explores the intricacies of Jordan Ayew’s phenomenal season at Crystal Palace that ended with the Ghanaian striker winning a hat-trick of accolades at the club’s End of Season Awards.—————————————————————————–Off the court, LeBron James was plotting ways to win his fourth NBA title. Off the pitch, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo were probably fascinated to see nets serving other purposes aside goal scoring. Serena Williams, Tiger Woods and Virat Kohli found out that there was life beyond swinging a racket at Roland Garros, finding a hole at Augusta, and scoring a run at The Oval.Well, this was not the off season but merely a suspension of mainstream sporting activities due to the coronavirus pandemic. With major media channels learning that the struggle for live sports content was akin to seeing a Mike Dean grin on a football pitch, The Last Dance, a 10-episode docu-series chronicling the final season of the Chicago Bulls dynasty and, most notably, the career of Michael Jordan with the Chicago Bulls, aired over five weeks on ESPN to fill the void.From losing nine of his first 10 play-off games, the contentious controversy in Sam Smith’s book “Jordan Rules,” the death of his father, signing with Nike all the way to his retirement and subsequent return, each week offered a different shade of Michael Jordan. The constant factor, however, was his hard work and dedication to excel, culminating in 6 NBA titles, 5 MVP awards, 6 Finals MVP awards, 10 Scoring titles and a host of other records and awards that captivated audiences worldwide.Jordan Ayew on the moveAway from Jordan’s all-conquering world of hoops, dunks and free-throws and into the realm of shin guards, tap-ins, and penalty kicks, a simple Google search for “Jordan premier league award” shows a number of accomplishments for a pair of Jordans.The first is Liverpool captain and 2019/20 Football Writers’ Association (FWA) Footballer of the Year Jordan Henderson, who inspired his side to a first top-flight league title in three decades.The second? Ghana’s own Jordan Ayew, whose outstanding performance for Crystal Palace this past season saw him win three separate awards in one night – Player of the Season, Goal of the season and Players’ Player of the Season – a feat that has garnered both local and foreign interest.“They are both my children and you take each person with his qualities. However, I am not the only person to say that Jordan is the most talented, even Andre also says that.”This was Abedi “Pele” Ayew, the legendary Ghanaian footballer who won a hat trick of African Footballer of the Year awards and the UEFA Champions League in the early 90s.In his sempiternal battle between fatherhood and professionalism, this remark by Abedi Pele during a 2013 Citi FM interview generated some mixed reactions among Ghana’s football fans. While the sceptics, clearly in the majority, viewed this as a typical Black Stars PR gimmick in order to secure a place for Jordan, a player who had often been criticized for his lackadaisical approach and profligacy in front of goal, the minority of optimists took this with a soupçon of hope.Well, they may have been influenced by a verse from the Bible in John 5:19, NLT: “So Jesus explained, ‘I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.” Or perhaps they didn’t really see the need to doubt a man with one of the most loaded resumés in African football history.Walking in the shadow of a giant is not all meat and drink. Listening to “Big Brother” by Kanye West, off his Graduation album underscores exactly that.Jordan are in action for Crystal Palace against Norwich CityIn Jordan’s case it’s been a blessing and a curse – the blessing is evident in the boundless advantages of being the son of footballing royalty in France and Ghana, which in his esteemed case looks to have afforded him the opportunity of signing as a trainee at Olympique de Marseille in 2006.Inversely, the curse, as J.K Rowling rightly summed up in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, has been the belief that “greatness inspires envy, envy engenders spite, spite spawns lies”.Since leaving Marseille in 2013, where he won the Ligue 1 championship alongside his brother Andre, Jordan has had an unfortunate record of experiencing relegation at as many as four clubs – Sochaux, Lorient, Aston Villa, and Swansea City – although he managed to finish as top scorer at these clubs.Jordan Ayew picked up 3 awards at Swansea City despite the club’s relegationThe exception to this experience has been Crystal Palace, his current club. His move to Palace came in January 2019, and was propelled by an eventful 2017/18 season at Swansea that saw him bag three individual accolades (Players’ Player of the Season, Goal of the Season and Top Goal scorer of the Season awards). It was initially a half season loan spell, and it turned out to be a frustrating one, yielding just one goal.But things have changed. If people had been sleeping on Jordan’s fine form at the 2019 African Cup of Nations in Egypt where he scored twice in four games before Ghana’s exit in the last 16, then his £2.5 million permanent switch to Palace after the tournament and the exploits of his sophomore season (2019/20) with the Eagles would surely wake them up.Was it his opener against Manchester United at Old Trafford? Or his headed equalizer against Arsenal at the Emirates? Perhaps, his winners against Watford, Brighton, Aston Villa and West Ham (Home and Away)? During the just ended season, Ayew was named Crystal Palace Player of the Month twice. He scooped 10 man-of-the-match awards.*Pretends to be shocked*Jordan Ayew’s winner vs. West Ham has been nominated for the @PremierLeague Goal of the Month!Vote now 👉 https://t.co/y3ufffuIby #CPFC pic.twitter.com/Fn9IGR7qAt— Crystal Palace F.C. (@CPFC) January 3, 2020For a team that conceded more goals (50) than it scored (31), his nine goals in thirty six games representing 29.03 % of goals scored, were vital in helping the club finish 14th, four places above the relegation zone. His late winner against West Ham United on Boxing Day 2019, a goal that was awarded as the Amazon goal of the season, was created with mature skill and incredible ingenuity, the clearest mark of how much he has grown.“When I had the ball I wanted to try and shoot with my left foot, I pushed it too far and tried to do everything on instinct,” Jordan said of the goal, which has garnered rave reviews worldwide.Jordan Ayew swept 3 awards at Crystal Palace at the end of the 2019/2020 seasonThe trio of awards at Palace has not been the only highlight from Jordan’s watershed season; his goals also shot him into an enviable record as the highest scoring Ghanaian in English Premier League history with 25 goals, breaking Tony Yeboah’s record of 24 goals.“My dad has given us so much, in everything, and not only to me, to the whole family,” Jordan told Sky Sports. “The only way we can say thank you is to perform week in, week out for him to be proud and that’s what we try to do.”And boy, did he try hard last season!Abedi Pele must be proud of his little boy, now 28, now a key Black Star and a prince in Roy Hodgson’s Palace in London. Jordan Ayew is an athlete at the apogee of his prowess, and unlike the great Michael Jordan, this definitely does not seem to be his Last Dance.–By: Terence Jude WoodTwitter: @Terence__WoodBlog: terencewood14.blogspot.comBio: As a writer & contributor for VAVEL.com, byfarthegreatestteam.com, arsenaldailynews.com and an occasional Radio and T.V. sports pundit in Ghana, Terence has a keen interest in literature, history, technology and music that influences his style of penmanship. Source: Terence Jude Wood Tags: Crystal PalaceJordan Ayew
Jimmy Butler injury update: 76ers star’s groin strain ‘nothing significant,’ doubtful to play vs. Nets Jimmy Butler has opened up about the infamous practice he was involved in while he was still a member of the Timberwolves.Butler asked to be moved out of Minnesota in mid-September and the team finally honored his request by dealing him to the 76ers two months later. But, shortly before he was traded, Butler took part in a scrimmage where he challenged multiple teammates as well as Minnesota’s coaching staff and executives. Butler discussed the incident during a recent appearance on The JJ Redick Podcast. Redick and Butler are now teammates in Philadelphia.The 29-year-old star said he was set off when someone in the organization told him he had to practice. Related News “First of all, I have a for-real problem with authority,” Butler said. “When somebody’s telling me what to do as a grown man, I have a problem with it. So now you done lit the match, but ain’t nothin’ on fire yet. You just lit the match.“I was on one (angry), there you go. I was on one. All because he lit the match. I would’ve been cool otherwise.”Butler said he started “yapping” after winning multiple scrimmages while playing with the Timberwolves’ third-stringers.“I always talk, anyways. If you can’t tell, I’m always talking, talking about how somebody can’t guard me, or nobody can beat me,” Butler said. “I do that. That’s what I do. This time it was just a little bit different ’cause of whose team I was on and I ain’t been around, so it was just taken up a notch and it didn’t help who was watching — ownership, management, all of that good stuff.”Butler reportedly had an impressive performance during the practice. But, he said “the most interesting detail” from that day had yet to be revealed. Jimmy Butler responds to 76ers star Joel Embiid’s comments about being frustrated with role “I was dominating, but I only shot the ball once,” Butler said. “Dimes, boom, boom, boom. Steals, blocks. I only shot the ball one time.”Butler has averaged 19.8 points and 5.2 rebounds in 13 games with the 76ers so far. He suffered a groin strain Monday against the Pistons, but the injury is reportedly not considered serious.
Turin, Italy | AFP | Cristiano Ronaldo is in hot form and gunning for revenge going into Tuesday’s Champions League clash against Valencia after seeing red against the Spaniards in the away leg, with Juventus needing a draw in Turin to book their ticket to the knockout rounds of the European competition.“Happy to have helped the team on another important win,” the 33-year-old wrote on social media after scoring his tenth goal this season for the Italian giants in Saturday’s 2-0 win over SPAL as Juventus opened up a record eight-point lead on the top of Serie A after 13 games.Ronaldo was purchased by Juventus for 100 million euros ($113 million) from Real Madrid last summer to help their quest for the elusive Champions League title after finishing runners up twice in the past four seasons.But the Portuguese superstar is also proving to be a key element in the team’s race towards an eighth straight Serie A title, with nine goals and five assists of their 28 goals this season.No Italian team have ever achieved 37 points from the first 13 games, with Ronaldo becoming the fastest forward in the club’s history to score 10 goals in all competitions.“I don’t not care about the numbers. I don’t count anything, the important thing is that we take it home in May,” said coach Massimiliano Allegri.Next up is a Group H return leg clash against Valencia, who beat Rayo Vallecano 3-0 in La Liga at the weekend, but are midtable in Spain.Juventus are top of the group with nine points after four games, with Manchester United two points behind and the Spaniards on five.Ronaldo’s Champions League debut for Juventus in September was marred when he was controversially sent off in tears after half an hour for a small push on Valencia defender Jeison Murillo in Spain.The red card was his first in 154 Champions League appearances, but Juventus still went on to beat the Spaniards 2-0.Ronaldo scored his first Champions League goal for Juventus and the 121st of his career against Manchester United in Turin earlier this month before a stunning comeback gave his former club a 2-1 win to delay the Italians’ passage to the last 16.– ‘Best player in the world’ – Despite his success on the pitch — leading the way in Europe with 31 goals this calendar year for both Real Madrid and Juventus — Ronaldo missed out on the world player of the year award to Croatia’s Luca Modric.There are also reports he has been snubbed for the final three in the Ballon d’Or for the first time since 2008, with the winner to be revealed in Paris on December 3.Ronaldo — a five-time Ballon d’Or winner — spent much of last month vehemently denying allegations by former model Kathryn Mayorga that he raped her in Las Vegas in 2009.He was dropped by Portugal for the Nations League internationals, with the European champions becoming the first team to book their passage to the semi-finals.Leaving Ronaldo off the Ballon d’Or podium would be “madness,” says Juventus sporting director Fabio Paratici.“Only a fool can doubt his qualities,” said Paratici.“He is the best player in the world and the most important in the history of football.“At this moment I see him very serene, as he has always been here at Juve. The fact that he cannot win the Ballon d’Or seems very strange, since he scored 15 goals in one Champions League campaign (last season),” he said.Colombian teammate Juan Cuadrado warned that Ronaldo’s focus remains on the pitch, as he bids to add to his five Champions League titles between Manchester United and Real Madrid.“Cristiano Ronaldo’s main quality is his professionalism,” said Cuadrado. “He’s hungry for victory and he’s come to the right place. We all think the same way he does.”Juventus won the elite European title twice in 1985 and 1996, but have finished runners-up seven times.Share on: WhatsApp
Submitted by Saint Martin’s UniversityThe American Legion Band, the color guard from the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 318 in Olympia and a commemorative tree-planting ceremony will be among the highlights of the inaugural Veteran’s Day Celebration at Saint Martin’s University, starting at 11:30 a.m. on November 10.The University’s new Flag Pavilion, located at the base of the Grand Staircase outside Old Main and adjacent to the Jan Halliday Memorial Plaza, is the venue for the celebration, which will be hosted by the Saint Martin’s University Veterans Club. The event is free and open to the public.“The focus of this Veterans Day celebration will be on gratitude — to our service members, our citizens and our nation,” says Fiona Ebbertt, a U.S. Army veteran, veterans club president and mathematics major at Saint Martin’s. “We want to say ‘thank you’ to our veterans and citizens for always having each other’s backs.”President Roy F. Heynderickx, Ph.D., will be present to welcome attendees and introduce guest speaker David R. Spangler, Ph.D. Spangler spent 21 of his 23 years at Saint Martin’s as president, retiring in 2005. He was called out of retirement in 2008 to serve as interim president until Heynderickx was selected to fill the president’s post in September 2009.During the ceremony, gratitude will also be formally expressed to Board of Trustees member and U.S. Marine Corps veteran Terence Monaghan ’62 and his wife, Mary Louise ’60, for the roles they played in establishing the Flag Pavilion. The Monaghans were touring the Lacey campus one day when Mrs. Monahan noticed there was no American flag present.“She remarked that we needed to do something to get a flag on campus. So, I put pencil to pad and designed a flag pavilion,” recalls Monaghan, an engineer and retired president of Veco Engineering. With funding provided by the Monaghans, the pavilion was constructed by Saint Martin’s personnel under the supervision of Alan Tyler, the University director of facilities.A formal dedication of the Flag Pavilion was held in February to recognize military veteran and active-duty students, alumni, faculty and staff, and members of the community, for their service to the country.As part of the upcoming Veterans Day Celebration, an “Honor Tree” will be planted and attendees will be invited to tie yellow ribbons on the branches as a show of gratitude to a military service member, according to Ebbertt.“The point of the tree is, we want to have a living memory that’s symbolic of the sacrifice and efforts of service members everywhere,” Ebbertt says.A luncheon hosted by the Veterans Club in the Worthington Conference Center, located on campus, will follow the ceremony at 12:30 p.m. The luncheon is open to the public. Facebook22Tweet0Pin0
FERNDALE >> Jockey Inoel Beato deicded to take a “working vacation” to Ferndale three years ago.It was a smart decision.Beato rode eight horses over two days at the Humboldt County Fair, won six races, including the Humboldt Marathon aboard A Thousand Aces, and left town with a hefty paycheck, great memories and had fans who bet on his horses asking for more.That is what they will get today and Sunday when the 29-year-old native of the Dominican Republic returns. Beato is slated to ride …
More than 85 million children under the age of five in West and Central Africa will receive polio vaccinations. (Image: www.academic.sun.ac.za)A massive campaign to eradicate a year-long polio epidemic in West and Central Africa kicked off on 6 March, according to global health bodies.The organisations, joining forces as the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), are hoping to immunise more than 85-million children under the age of five in 19 West and Central African countries. GPEI includes governments, the World Health Organisation (WHO), Rotary International, the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention and Unicef.The campaign kicked off in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Senegal and Sierra Leone – countries that have experienced polio outbreaks in the last six months – as well as in Nigeria, Ghana, Benin, Central African Republic, Gambia, Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau.Vaccinations in Niger, Togo and Cote d’Ivoire will be done at a later date due to impending elections in those states.The scope of the new campaign is significant because previous attempts in 2009 failed to reach enough children, and so the outbreak persisted.Over 400 000 volunteers and health workers from different organisations have been called on to administer two drops of the oral polio vaccine (OPV) to each child in the 19 countries on 6 March. The “dedicated army” will work for about 12 hours flat, going to every household on either foot, bicycle, car, boat or motorcycle.“With better coverage that leaves no child unvaccinated, these campaigns can succeed in making West and Central Africa polio-free,” Unicef regional director Dr Gianfranco Rotigliano said in a statement released on 4 March.“Hundreds of volunteers from our Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies will ensure that polio drops reach every last child,” said Anders Naucler, health coordinator for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in West and Central Africa. “That is our challenge and that will be the measure of our success.”Building immunityVaccinations will be repeated in the 19 countries on 24 April, but children in Burkina Faso, Guinea, Liberia, Mauritania, Senegal and Sierra Leone – where the recent outbreaks have occurred – will receive an additional dose on 26 March as part of a new Short Interval Additional Dose strategy “that has proven successful in rapidly building population immunity where needed”, according to Unicef.The new campaign is an aspect of an ongoing initiative to fight the epidemic that broke out in Nigeria in 2008. It then spread to its neighbouring countries, which were previously polio-free, and to Central Africa, said GPEI.After battling to contain the spread, health organisations, working with health ministries in the affected countries, introduced new approaches which include a scheme to monitor how many children have been reached, better training for vaccinators and appropriate use of experienced staff.Dr Luis Gomes Sambo, WHO regional director for Africa, said the campaign shows Africa’s determination to be free of polio. “From the top leadership to local district administrators in every country we are each accountable to the African child. [We have] to vaccinate every child and achieve high coverage.”Funding from RotaryRotary International, which boasts about 1.2-million volunteers worldwide, has donated US$30-million (R223-million) to fund the campaign.“We are proud to have provided the funding necessary for the March rounds and we call on others to play their part in making Africa polio-free by providing funding necessary for more high-coverage campaigns,” said Ambroise Tshimbalanga-Kasongo, who chairs the organisation’s Africa Regional PolioPlus Committee.