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EPL: De Bruyne To Miss Arsenal Match At Etihad

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Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola said on Friday that midfielder Kevin De Bruyne will miss Saturday ’ s home English Premier League game against Arsenal .
The midfielder had picked up an injury on international duty with Belgium last weekend .
He was substituted in the second half of Belgium’ s 2 -1 UEFA Nations League defeat by England at Wembley last Sunday and then withdrew from the squad with an unspecified injury .
“ The squad has come back a little better than the previous time . Unfortunately , Kevin is out . But the rest of the players came back well ,” Guardiola told reporters .
“ I don’ t think it ’ s much . But the next games , I think , he will be out ,” added the Spaniard, on the extent of De Bruyne ’s injury.
“ But we will see day by day how he is going on. ”
Manchester City have a busy fixture list , hosting Porto in the UEFA Champions League group stage on Wednesday before a league trip to West Ham on the following Saturday .
They then travel to Marseille for another group stage game the Tuesday after .
( Reuters / NAN )

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Nigerian Footballer Drowns In Belarus

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Kelvin Odenigbo, the Nigerian footballer who plied his trade for FC Vitebsk in Belarus, has been found dead after drowning in a lake.

The Belarusian Premier League club confirmed the demise of the 20-year-old striker in a statement on its website.

In the statement, the club said Odenigbo drowned and his corpse was found on Saturday by the lake Beloye, a tourist destination in the Vitebsk region.

“We express our sincere condolences to the family and friends of the football player. The football club Vitebsk reports that on June 5, 2021, on the lake Beloye, in the area of the tourist base Verasy, OSVOD employees found the drowned Kelvin Odenigbo,” the statement read.

The club also promised to release more details about Odenigbo’s death while expressing its condolences to the family and friends of the deceased.

“We will publish all official information as it becomes available. We express our sincere condolences to the family and friends of the football player, as well as to all the fans of the team,” the statement added.

Odenigbo recently joined the club on loan from NAF Rockets FC, the Nigerian National League side, at the end of last season before making the switch permanent for the 11-match-old 2021/22 season.

He featured for sixth-placed Vitebsk this season, assisting one goal in four appearances.

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Koeman To Continue As Barca Coach –Laporta

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Agency Report

Ronald Koeman has escaped the Barcelona axe with club president Joan Laporta announcing on Thursday the Dutchman is to continue as coach next season.

“We’ve decided to give continuity to a contract already in place,” Laporta confirmed after a meeting of the club’s directors.

Koeman’s confirmation comes after the Catalan press had hinted that winning round Lionel Messi as well as lifting the Copa del Rey and overseeing a year of transition may not have been enough for him to keep his job.

Laporta explained, “We think it’s the best for Barca and we are very happy to be able to announce today that Ronald Koeman is staying.”

He said “very frank and straight” conversations had taken place before committing to Koeman until the summer of 2022.

“This time for reflection was necessary… to see together what didn’t work at the end of last season”.

AFP

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Liverpool’s Nigerian Striker Awoniyi Granted UK Work Permit

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The 23-year-old joined Liverpool on a long-term deal in August 2015 from Nigeria’s Imperial Academy, but has never played for The Reds due to his inability to secure a work permit. It means Awoniyi, who is currently on a seventh loan spell outside of the United Kingdom at German side Union Berlin is now eligible to be included in the Liverpool squad for next season.

“It’s been a long process but finally [Taiwo] Awoniyi can now focus on his career either at Liverpool or somewhere in England,” a top official at Imperial Academy told BBC Sport Africa. “He has the ambition to play in the Premier League and hopefully, he can do that next season.”

Fit-again Awoniyi, who has a contract with Liverpool until June 2023, scored five goals in 20 appearances for Union Berlin despite an injury-blighted campaign in the Bundesliga.

Since becoming a Red, the forward has enjoyed loan spells with then German second-tier club FSV Frankfurt, Dutch side NEC Nijmegen, Belgian outfits Royal Excel Mouscron (twice) KAA Gent and Mainz in order to attract interest from national selectors and gain a work permit.

Under-17 World Cup winner with Nigeria in 2013, Awoniyi has represented the West African country at all youth levels.

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