Moroccan midfielder Adel Taarabt is confident his relationship with QPR fans remains rock solid.
The midfielder has accused Harry Redknapp of trying to create a rift after the QPR manager’s rant on Sunday.
“When I was playing at Milan, sometimes Kaka or Robinho weren’t getting in the team. Then I come to QPR, and that’s not to disrespect my team-mates because I have a good relationship with them, but I was surprised I was not in the squad,” he told the Daily Mail.
“When I came back from Milan, the QPR kitman said ‘you are no more No 10′. I never wanted to be No 10 but the fans asked the chairman for Adel to be 10 not 7 because of the legend Stan Bowles – they wanted me to have the 10 shirt.
“They said they had never seen an exciting player like this for 20 or 25 years, so I said to Tony Fernandes I will take it. Then this summer I was told I would be 27 so I said ‘OK, no problem’. I said nothing.
“I just think that obviously at QPR the fans love me, I love QPR and I love the fans. They are my club. You can’t break the relationship with me and the fans. He wants to get the fans against me.”
West Ham striker Diafra Sakho scored his sixth goal in six matches as West Ham rose to fourth in the English Premier League with a 3-1 win at Burnley.
Fellow Senegalese Mohamed Diame of Hull and Sadio Mane of Southampton were also on target in a profitable weekend for Africans.
Kenyan Victor Wanyama was another scorer as Southampton crushed Sunderland 8-0 and Ivorian Wilfried Bony converted a penalty for Swansea in a 2-1 loss to Stoke.
In Italy, Ghana striker Richmond Boakye was the hero for Atalanta with a 90th minute winner, whle Angolan Manucho scored in first goal for Rayo Vallecano in Spain.
DIAFRA SAKHO (West Ham)
Sakho nodded the Hammers in front four minutes after half-time at Turf Moor to stretch his goal-a-game scoring streak to six matches in all competitions. The 24-year-old Senegalese joined the Londoners in mid-year from French club Metz.
WILFRIED BONY (Swansea)
The Ivory Coast striker was wrestled to the ground and then got up to score the ensuing penalty as Swansea went 1-0 up at Stoke in the 34th minute. However, another Bony penalty appeal was rejected and Stoke came back to win 2-1.
MOHAMED DIAME (Hull)
He equalised just four minutes after the Tigers had fallen 1-0 behind in the 13th minute at Arsenal. The midfielder burst through the home back-line before placing a delicate chip over advancing goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny. Arsenal claimed Diame had pulled back Mathieu Flamini, who appeared to win the ball off him, but the referee ignored their protests and awarded the goal. The match was drawn 2-2.
VICTOR WANYAMA (Southampton)
On as a substitute, the Kenyan favourite was played in by Dusan Tadic to score Southampton’s seventh goal in the 79th minute of their extraordinary 8-0 home demolition of Sunderland.
SADIO MANE (Southampton)
Another substitute, the Senegal midfielder was also teed up by Tadic four minutes from time to complete the scoring in what was the Saints’ record English top-flight victory.
IKECHUKWU UCHE (Villarreal)
Nigerian striker Uche struck twice as Villarreal moved up to sixth with a comfortable 2-0 win over Almeria. The 30-year-old was in the right place at the right time to tap home the opener after Ruben Martinez had saved from Mario Gaspar. And Uche was very fortunate not to be flagged offside for his second goal as he turned home Moi Gomez’s cross at the second attempt.
MANUCHO (Rayo Vallecano)
Former Manchester United frontman Manucho handed Rayo Vallecano three vital points with the winner three minutes into stoppage time in a 1-0 victory at Granada. The Angolan collected Chelsea loanee Gael Kakuta’s pass inside the area before coolly slotting into the far corner to register his first goal since joining the Madrid club on a free transfer.
NORDIN AMRABAT (Malaga)
Moroccan Amrabat scored his first goal of the season from the penalty spot as Malaga moved into the top half of the table with a 2-1 win at bottom club Cordoba.
RICHMOND BOAKYE (Atalanta)
Boakye emerged as the hero for Atalanta in a dogfight between two sides languishing in the Serie A doldrums. As the match headed for a scoreless draw, Boakye got his toe to a loose ball in a crowded area to poke home a 90th-minute winner for the Bergamo side, who pulled three points clear of the relegation zone.
MICHAEL ESSIEN (AC Milan)
Ghanaian Essien’s first start for Milan this season ended on a happy note, the Rossoneri claiming a precious 3-1 win at Verona thanks largely to a Keisuke Honda brace for the visitors that helped move Milan up to fourth. Essien had a relatively uneventful 90 minutes.
KWADWO ASAMOAH (Juventus)
Asamoah was an unused substitute in Juventus’s 1-1 draw at Sassuolo that saw the champions’ league lead over Roma reduced to a point. Patrice Evra was preferred to the Ghanaian, suggesting Asamoah could start Wednesday when Juve meet Champions League opponents Olympiakos.
GERVINHO (AS Roma)
Gervinho was an unused substitute in Roma’s 3-0 home win over Chievo that, along with Juve’s 1-1 draw at Sassuolo, allowed the capital side to close the gap on the Serie A leaders to a point. Gervinho is almost certain to start for Roma in Tuesday’s Champions League clash at home to Bayern Munich, when the Ivorian’s pace could prove the difference for Rudi Garcia’s men.
NICOLAS NKOULOU (Marseille)
The 24-year-old Cameroon defender opened the scoring in Marseille’s 2-0 win over Toulouse in front of a 61,846 crowd at the newly-refurbished Stade Velodrome. Nkoulou found the target in the 21st minute when he rose to convert a Dimitri Payet free-kick, the ball appearing to go into the net off his shoulder.
CHEICK DIABATE (Bordeaux)
Mali striker Diabate put Bordeaux ahead from the penalty spot after 22 minutes against Caen, but the visitors levelled for a 1-1 draw as Bordeaux missed the chance to go back above PSG into second place.
FLOYD AYITE (Togo)
The 25-year-old France-born Togo international scored six minutes after half-time to give Bastia a 1-0 win at Nice. Despite a furious fightback from mid-table Nice, the Corsicans held on for only their second win of the season. The match was marred by a mini pitch invasion from disgruntled Nice fans at full-time.
KEVIN-PRINCE BOATENG, ERIC-MAXIM CHOUPO MOTING (Schalke 04)
Ghana midfielder Boateng returned from an ankle injury by playing 78 minutes of Schalke’s 2-0 victory at home to his former club Hertha Berlin. Boateng put in a strong display as an attacking midfielder and Cameroon striker Eric-Maxim Choupo Moting was involved in the build-ups to both goals.
ASSANI LUKIMYA (Werder Bremen)
The Democratic Republic of Congo defender was powerless to prevent Germany star Mario Goetze turning him and burying his shot into the far corner for Bayern Munich’s last goal in their 6-0 rout of Werder Bremen. Lukimya’s Congolese team-mate Cedrick Makiadi also started for Bremen, but the league’s bottom side were outclassed.
President Michael Sata will on Zambia’s 50th Independence Day anniversary honour various sports personalities including the national football team that won the country the first-ever Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) trophy in 2012.
The Chipolopolo and other sports personalities will be honoured for their contribution to the development of sports in the country.
In a first ever Special Single Class Golden Jubilee Medal, President Sata has picked various sporting icons who include the likes of Kalusha Bwalya, the only player from Southern Africa to have won the African Footballer-of-the-Year and Satwant Singh, the record eight-time African rally champion.
According to a list of people to be honoured during the investiture ceremony, the President has selected all members of the Zambian team that won the 2014 AFCON championship.
In a list cutting across various sporting disciplines, boxing coach Anthony Mwamba has also been named alongside veteran administrators like the late David Abel Ray Phiri, who served in various sports bodies, and Dr Mutumba Bull.
But it is the footballers who have dominated the sporting list to be awarded with some household names like Ashios Melu, winner of Zambian footballer of the year on two occasions, Estone Mulenga and will both receive their medals posthumously.
Also making the cut is Beston ‘Quicksilver’ Chambeshi, who made his name playing for Nkana where is now coach, Zambia’s most memorable midfielder Charles Musonda and the 1974 national team captain Dickson Makwaza among others.
Veteran soccer commentator Dennis Liwewe, who died earlier this year in April and is widely regarded as the voice of Zambian football, is also on the list as well as veteran journalist Ridgeway Liwena who used to double as a City of Lusaka player and reporter at the Times of Zambia.
Some other names to receive awards from the class of 2012 are goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene, Davies Nkausu, Joseph Musonda, Stoppila Sunzu, Nathan Sinkala, Rainford Kalaba and Hichani Himoonde.
Chisamba Lungu, Isaac Chansa, Emmanuel Mayuka, James Chamanga, Noah Chivuta and Nyambe Mulenga, Evans Kangwa, Joshua Titima, Felix Katongo and Kalililo Kakonje will also receive honours.
Some of the names appearing from the technical staff are Patrice Beaumelle, Dr Joseph Kabungo, Gibson Chaloba as well as team manager Lusekelo Kamwambi.
Other medals will be handed to icons in football like Derby Mankinka, Lucky Msiska, Manfred Chabinga and Zambia’s arguably most powerful sports administrator Patrick Chamunda, who sits on the International Olympic Committee board.
Nigeria could host the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations if Morocco pull out of staging the continent’s biggest football showpiece due to fears over the spread of the Ebola Virus Disease, according to vice president of the Nigeria Football Federation, Seyi Akinwunmi.
With Morocco yet to confirm whether they will let go the opportunity to host the tournament, the Confederation of African Football (CAF) has already written to a few countries including Ghana and Egypt to ask if they can host the Cup of Nations.
The North African country is asking CAF to postpone the tournament to a later date instead of its present January/February schedule but the governing body is not ready to.
And Nigeria could throw her hat in the ring to stage the tournament despite fears of the possibility of teams from Ebola-ravaged countries qualifying for the competition and bringing along their supporters.
Africa’s largest country was certified Ebola-free by the World Health Organisation on Monday, six weeks after the last case of the disease was reported and this could prompt renewed interest from international organizations.
“I think we are interested [in hosting the Afcon],” new NFF vice president Seyi Akinwunmi was quoted on Goal on Monday.
“It is not strictly the purview of the NFF alone but we have been asked [if we can host the competition] and we have said yes, why not?
“I think that the National Sports Commission or the Federal Government is looking at the possibility of hosting the tournament,” said Akinwunmi who disclosed that CAF had not yet written to Nigeria.
South Africa have already turned down the opportunity to host the tournament with Safa president Danny Joordan saying: “The Afcon 2015 tournament will not be held here. That issue doesn’t exist. Caf must discuss this matter with Morocco.”
With the Super Eagles struggling to qualify for the 2015 tournament, hosting the competition would give them automatic qualification to defend the title they won in South Africa last year.
It could also be a way for Nigeria to show its leadership role on the continent after successfully curtailing the spread of the disease, something for which it has already earned the praise of the international community.
Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Chairman, Amuja Pinnick, has disclosed that the country’s ruling football body had signed a deal with a company that has agreed to pay the salary of a new foreign coach for one full year.
He said the NFF has concluded the deal that would take the country’s football and the Super Eagles to greater heights. He spoke at the Ikoyi Club 1938 Table Tennis Tournament, Lagos, sponsored by the Arco Petrochemical Company Limited.
“Only today, I was privileged to get to a company… it’s not that we don’t believe in Nigerian coaches, we believe so much in Nigerian coaches, but right now we need a foreign coach to actually train and rediscover our potentials.
“We concluded a deal to sign a foreign coach and the company has agreed to pay the foreign coach for one full year. We have done that. Our approach is basically scientific and you will see the result in due course,” Pinnick said.
According to the new NFF helmsman, who spoke on football without relegating the table tennis championship he came for: “There is an event going on right now in Nigeria. I was elected exactly three weeks ago. From then till now I have turned grey; that shows that football is a very tedious business. But our approach this time is basically scientific. Like I told someone, United Kingdom (UK) today is not the best footballing nation.
“But today they have the best and richest football culture. And that is exactly what we are trying to do in Nigeria. Victory to us is not defined by winning laurels everyday, but victory to us is creating a scientific approach to sustaining football development in Nigeria, where you can go to the stadium with your kids and watch matches.”
Mr. Pinnick, however, said that the reason for the choice of a foreign coach was for the country to redeem its pride of place in the footballing world. “Our approach is long, short, and medium terms. Our short approach is creating a data-base of the best Nigerians players.”
“For example, Obafemi Martins is the hottest commodity today, I wonder why you will go to China to get a player instead of Martins. NNF will not allow that. We are going to give from a pool of players to take from. Our Federation will also get all the clubs to have the Under-13 clubs where they will have their own junior league. Our approach is basically to get them young and nurture them.
Senegal striker Demba Ba produced a man-of-the-match display for Besiktas in their victory over Sivasspor on Sunday night.
The former Chelsea man scored twice and assisted the third as the Black Eagles ran out 3-2 winners.
Sivasspor opened the scoring through Morocco defender Manuel da Costa in the 39th minute from a corner. The visitors, featuring Nigerians John Utaka and Macauley Chrisantus, held on till the 58th minute and then it became the Demba Ba show.
The 29-year-old brought the scores level, finishing off a Gokhan Tore cross, and struck again seven minutes later, sweeping home another cross, this time by full-back Ramon Motta.
However, Sivasspor were soon level, as da Costa set up Hakan Arslan to score from close range following a corner.
Parity was, however, short-lived; having notched his brace, Ba turned provider for Olcay Sahan, who made no mistake to settle a thrilling encounter.
This victory continues Besiktas’s unbeaten start to the league campaign, and they sit at the top of the Super Lig table with 14 points from six games.
Queens Park Rangers slumped to a 3-2 reverse against Liverpool, and many fans have questioned about the absence of talented Moroccan Adel Taarabt.
The attacking midfielder spent the second half of last season rampant at AC Milan, but has not found playing time impossible at Loftus Road.
Replying reporters after the topsy-turvy encounter, which saw his team give away two own-goals, manager Harry Redknapp was brutally honest.
“He’s not fit. He played in a reserve game the other day and I could have run more than he did.”
Redknapp’s side are in dire need of inspiration in the final third, following the departure of Loic Remy. However, in spite of chairman Tony Fernandes’ convictions that Taarabt would prove his critics wrong, Redknapp appears to have completely lost all patience with him.
“I can’t pick him,” said the former Tottenham and Portsmouth manager. “I pick people who want to try. I can’t keep protecting people who won’t train and are 3-stone overweight.”
Swansea City boss Garry Monk is upbeat over securing Wilfried Bony to a new deal.
The Ivory Coast striker has been linked with Liverpool and Tottenham.
But Monk told the South Wales Evening Post: “In the coming weeks his representatives will probably make contact and we’ll have a chat.
“Wilfried is a great professional, one of the best we have, and it will be great for us if we can sort something out.”
Ivorian striker Didier Drogba has recalled when Jose Mourinho first named John Terry Chelsea captain.
Terry played his 500th game for the Blues in victory at Crystal Palace on Saturday.
“I remember when we had our first meeting in Seattle at the start of pre-season, Jose was introducing himself and his staff and he was saying okay, John Terry was a captain last season and I think we should keep him as the captain,” Drogba told chelseafc.com.
“Everybody said okay and for me it was like he had been the captain for ages already. With Jose you had the confirmation he was going to be the one we are going to follow for the next 10 or 15 years.
“To keep the trust of the manager means a lot, it means you have been a brilliant captain and you have been giving everything to the players because to be captain is more than being a player with an armband, it means you have to help your team-mates, on the pitch and off the pitch.
“There is the player and there is the man, and the man I have a lot of respect for too because from the day I first came onto the team bus he was there to help me. I always say ‘my captain’ and he is the one.”
Greek club PAS Lamia have asked Sierra Leone’s John Kamara not to train or play with the club for three weeks due to fears over the Ebola virus.
Kamara returned to Greece after playing for the Leone Stars in their Africa Cup of Nations ties in Cameroon.
However, Lamia told him the decision was on advice from the Greek health ministry.
“[The club told me] I shouldn’t be with the team for 15 to 21 days as I went to Africa to play and because of the Ebola virus,” Kamara told BBC Sport.
“They made it clear I should stay indoors or I should travel abroad to see my family and not go to training.”
Sierra Leone had to host their tie against Cameroon in Yaounde because they are banned from playing at home by the Confederation of African Football due the outbreak of the Ebola virus in the country.
The move by second tier Lamia comes despite the fact there have been no reported cases of Ebola in Cameroon and Kamara has not been to Sierra Leone in more than a year.
“The last time I was in Sierra Leone was for the World Cup qualifiers against Tunisia and Cape Verde,” he added.
“[While we were in Cameroon] they checked our temperatures every morning and every evening.
“I have told the club I am ready to undergo any medical they want me to do – as far as I am concerned I don’t have the Ebola virus.
How the Ebola outbreak has affected African football Sierra Leone has suspended all football matches in the county
Caf has placed bans on Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone hosting any international football
Seychelles forfeited their Nations Cup qualifier rather than host Sierra Leone
“I don’t understand it but I have to respect their decision.”
The 26-year-old added he would have to think about his future with the club.
“I can’t say anything about my future right now because I have so many things to think about, I have to speak to my family and my agent about it before I consider what to do,” he said.
Kamara played in both Nations Cup qualifiers for Sierra Leone in Cameroon, the Leone Stars earned a goalless draw on Saturday before losing 2-0 four days later.