The foolhardy, the naive and their money…

May 31, 2012 Articles 2 Comments

With the stupendous amounts of cash passing through the hands of many of today’s footballers, it would not be wrong to assume that even with their rather lavish lifestyles, they should be set up for life, once retirement arrives. Those exercising prudence and acknowledging a need to save for the rainy day – which unfailingly […]

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What (or who) killed Rashidi Yekini?

May 19, 2012 Articles 1 Comment

Rashidi Yekini, celebrating after scoring Nigeria's opening goal in their 3-0 win over Bulgaria at the 1994 World Cup finals, in Dallas Texas.

It has been, unbelievably, almost seven months since my last post. I wish I could say that I am in an apologetic mood, to those of you who followed my posts with keen interest and were disappointed when I took an abrupt leave of absence. Chronicling, repetitively, the problems that plague the development of the […]

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October 29, 2011 Articles Leave a comment

For those gradually accustoming themselves to a weekly helping of my thoughts and reportage on the African game, I can only offer my profound apologies for my unexpected, prolonged absence from these pages. Incessant travel across Nigeria, England and Germany, as well as a bout of sudden ill-health over the last couple of weeks, are […]

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Why has Nigeria become CAF’s whipping boy?

October 2, 2011 Articles Leave a comment

The series of meetings in Cairo, over the latter part of September, have thrown several issues into the fray, which no serious commentator of the continental game can afford to ignore. Top of the list, for today, is the decision of CAF’s executive committee, on Monday 27th September, to allow Libya and South Africa swop […]

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Can Drogba win his biggest match?

September 24, 2011 Articles Leave a comment

The last time I chatted, at length, with Didier Drogba, at Chelsea’s training ground in Cobham, Surrey – about a half hour’s train ride from London’s Waterloo station – his major concern was recovering from the spate of injuries that made an opening season with Chelsea, after leaving French club Olympique Marseille, a challenge. Exuding […]

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September 17, 2011 Articles 3 Comments

As the utter shambles that is the 2010 Nigerian championship continues, the worst organised in its 39-year history, with no one having the foggiest idea about when it will end, whilst the rest of the organised world is well into the 2011 season, it’s the high-stakes legal poker game, between Swiss side FC Sion and […]

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Who switched off our televisions?

September 10, 2011 Articles 1 Comment

As any fan of the Super Eagles throughout Nigeria clearly observed last Sunday, there was no telecast of their penultimate 2012 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against the Barea of Madagascar in Antananarivo. For a football-crazy country that lives, breathes and eats the game – and the fortunes of its struggling national team – the […]

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Reforming football begins with us

September 3, 2011 Articles 1 Comment

The battle for the heart and soul of FIFA, world football’s governing body, has, unsurprisingly, kept us hacks pretty busy, as we report on the unfolding drama amongst its squabbling chieftains, which will continue for a while yet. Mohamed Bin Hammam’s fight against his life ban, the Brazilian authorities investigation into the financial conduct of CBF […]

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Will Hayatou dodge the bullet of folly?

August 27, 2011 Articles Leave a comment

My close-up encounters with Les enfant terrible, El Hadji Diouf, the former African Footballer of the Year, recently slammed with a five-year ban by the Senegalese Football Federation for telling the world an uncomfortable truth – that there is corruption in African football – were going to be my focal points today. El-Hadj is a […]

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Truth is a necessary inconvenience

August 20, 2011 Articles Leave a comment

As an Ivorien acquaintance poignantly observed, during a chat we had in the plush lobby of the Intercontinental Hotel and Towers, in the Johannesburg suburb of Sandton last May, truth-tellers in African football do not have a long life-span in its corridors of power. When they bluntly point out the unacceptable and fight for what […]

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Will South Africa let a snub go?

August 13, 2011 Articles 1 Comment

Courtesy of the riots across England, Nigeria’s Super Eagles were unable to take on Ghana’s Black Stars at Watford’s Vicarage Road ground last Tuesday, denying them a needed warm-up game ahead of the next stage of the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers, taking place in early September. Yes, I know… For any football fan […]

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August 6, 2011 Articles 7 Comments

When it comes to Sunday Oliseh, the former Nigeria captain and retired defensive midfielder, I admit it… I am completely biased. Over the last 13 years, which began with a conversation at The Amsterdam Arena, whilst he was wearing the red and white strip of Ajax, our relationship has advanced to a level where we […]

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