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BREAKING: PSV Eindhoven Crowned Dutch Champions For Record 25th Time

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PSV supporters cheer during the Dutch Eredivisie football match between PSV Eindhoven and Sparta Rotterdam at the Phillips stadium, in Eindhoven, on May 5, 2024. (Photo by MAURICE VAN STEEN / ANP / AFP) / Netherlands OUT / NETHERLANDS OUT

PSV Eindhoven were crowned Dutch champions for the 25th time on Sunday, the club’s first title since 2018, in a season also notable for the implosion of rivals Ajax.

Peter Bosz’s men made sure of the Eredivisie trophy with two games to spare via a 4-2 win over Sparta Rotterdam in a party atmosphere at a sunny Philips Stadion.

This meant second-placed Feyenoord could no longer catch PSV, who celebrated in front of their jubilant fans at the final whistle.

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It has been a season to remember for the Eindhoven club whose shirt has been graced by Brazilians Romario and Ronaldo, as well as Dutch legends Mark van Bommel and Arjen Robben.

They went 17 games before even dropping a point in the Eredivisie, finally losing their unbeaten record on the 27th matchday with a 3-1 loss away to NEC Nijmegen.

Particularly sweet was a 5-2 win at home to Ajax and a crunch 2-1 victory away in Feyenoord’s intimidating De Kuip stadium, which set PSV on their way towards the title.

READ ALSO: EPL: Haaland Scores Four In Man City Rout Of Wolves

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Central to PSV’s success this term has been the form of their veteran Dutch striker Luuk de Jong, whose 27 goals has made him the league’s joint top goalscorer.

This team has some way to go before matching the legendary 1987/88 Guus Hiddink-coached side that swept all before them, beating Benfica on penalties in the European Cup final.

But the Eredivisie trophy will assuage the frustrations of previous seasons when PSV finished second on three consecutive occasions, watching Ajax or Feyenoord lift the title.

PSV also enjoyed a good run in Europe, coming second in a Champions League group that included Arsenal, Sevilla and Lens, before crashing out to Borussia Dortmund in the last 16.

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– Bliss for PSV, Horror for Ajax –

Feyenoord can count themselves unlucky to have come up against an all-conquering PSV this year — the Rotterdam club have only lost twice all season in the top flight.

The De Kuip faithful will settle for second place plus a Dutch Cup triumph but are set to lose their coach, with Arne Slot heading to Liverpool to replace Jurgen Klopp.

READ ALSO: Five-goal Haaland Crushes Luton As Man City Reach FA Cup Quarter-finals

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Meanwhile, Ajax fans would settle for anything after a season which would have Johan Cruyff turning in his grave.

The four-time European Cup champions seem unlikely to qualify for any European football next season, lying a shocking fifth — nine points behind AZ Alkmaar.

The 5-2 win for PSV over Ajax in October was doubly joyous for the Eindhoven club as it also, briefly, condemned their perennial rivals to a historic last place in the Eredivisie.

Historic low followed historic low Ajax, a club that counts Cruyff, Marco Van Basten and Dennis Bergkamp as alumni, as they crashed out of the Dutch club to amateur club Hercules.

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The nadir for the Amsterdam club came in early April when they suffered humiliation in De Kuip, losing 6-0 to Feyenoord in the Dutch “Klassieker.”

READ ALSO: FULL LIST: Messi, Haaland And Bonmati Lead Ballon d’Or Nominees

Frustrations on the pitch have boiled over into violence in the stands and chaos in the boardroom.

CEO and chairman Alex Kroes was suspended on suspicion of insider trading, only to return a few weeks later as technical director.

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A few days after his suspension, it emerged that club chairman Michael van Praag, who had vocally criticised Kroes, had “forgotten” to declare his own shares in the club to the correct authorities.

Vitesse Arnhem were relegated for the first time in 35 seasons after the Dutch federation imposed an 18-point penalty on them.

They currently sit on two points after their punishment for breaches of the league’s licensing regulations.

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CAF Women Champions League: Edo Queens Get Hero’s Welcome, Obaseki Doles Out Cash Reward On Team

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Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki (right); his wife, Mrs. Betsy Obaseki (2nd left); Chairman, Edo Sports Commission, Yusuf Alli (left), with players of Edo Queens, during a celebration in honour of the victorious Edo Queens, at the Government House, Benin City, Thursday, May 30, 2024.

The Edo State female football team, Edo Queens, were on Thursday warmly welcomed back to the state amid pomp and pageantry by thousands of fans and other residents after they made history with their triumph at the Super Six Playoffs to clinch a ticket to represent Nigeria on the continental stage of the CAF Women Champions League.

The jubilant fans, led by the Edo State First Lady, Mrs. Betsy Obaseki, joined a motorcade of the victorious Edo Queens from Western Boys High School, in Ikpoba-Hill and cheered the team through Aduwawa, Akpakpava, Plymouth, Ring Road and terminated at the Government House, Benin City, where they were received by Governor Obaseki.

Obaseki was joined by the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dr. Asue Ighodalo, and other top government officials to receive the triumphant girls where he doled out cash reward on the victorious team.

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The governor, who praised the team for their excellent campaign at the 2023/2024 season of the Nigeria Women Football League (NWFL) and victory at the Super Six Tournament, assured them of the state government’s sustained support.

READ ALSO: Kenyatta, Weah, Sultan, Others Storm Benin For GJF Annual Democracy Dialogue

He said, “I am so happy and proud today as you have done us proud by bringing this trophy home. The trophy we have been looking for in the past 29 years is now with us. We know you will continue to be champions. I encourage you to work hard as your government and Governor will continue to support you.

“Whether I am here or not, the person that will replace me will continue to support you. You have tried and have made us proud. Money alone can’t do it all but we will give you money for a job well done and for making us proud.”

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He stated, “Each player of the team will get one million naira (N1,000,000.00) for the achievement, while the coaches will get five million naira (N5,000,000.00).”

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Lookman, Boniface, Other Nigerian Footballers Who Won Major Trophies In Europe

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Super Eagles forward Ademola Lookman won the UEFA Europa League with Italian side Atalanta last Wednesday, capping off what many have described as a fairly successful football season for Nigerian footballers in Europe.

Lookman’s success comes on the back of victories for Victor Boniface and Nathan Tella, who were part of Bayer Leverkusen’s ‘invincibles’ squad in the Bundesliga.

Here is a list of Nigerian players who tasted glory with their clubs in Europe in the 2023–24 season.

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Victor Boniface and Nathan Tella (Bayer Leverkusen)

Victor Boniface and Nathan were part of the Leverkusen side that won the Bundesliga title for the first time in the club’s history. Xabi Alonso’s side won the league, becoming the first team in the competition’s history to go unbeaten in a season.

READ ALSO: Royal Tussle: Prof. Akenzua Suspended From Benin Royal Family

Boniface scored 14 goals and registered 8 assists; Tella, on the other hand, scored 5 goals and provided 2 assists for Leverkusen. The club missed out on an unprecedented treble after a 3-0 loss to Ademola Lookman’s Atalanta in the Europa League final. Days later, Leverkusen lifted the DFB Pokal.

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Ademola Lookman (Atalanta)

Lookman was the hero for Atalanta, scoring a hat-trick in the final as the team defeated Bayer Leverkusen to win its first-ever European trophy.

Lookman also added 10 goals in the league as La Dea finished fourth in the Serie A.

Peter Olayinka (Red Star Belgrade)

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The 28-year-old forward played the entire duration of Red Star Belgrade’s 2-1 win over Vojvodina in the Serbian Cup Final.

He also scored a brace for his side in a 4-1 win over Cukaricki to win the Serbian Super League title. He joined Boniface and Tella as the only Nigerian footballers to win the double.

Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanachio (Leicester City)

In the English Championship, Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho helped Leicester earn a return to the Premier League.

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READ ALSO: Netherlands Leads Air Defence Missiles Supply Effort To Ukraine

Ndidi scored 5 goals and recorded 5 assists, while Iheanacho, who saw limited gametime, scored 5 times for the Foxes.

William Troost-Ekong (PAOK FC)

In Greece, Supeer Eagles defender William Troost Ekong returned from injury to help his side clinch the Greek Super League title.

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Ekong was crowned the best player of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), as Nigeria finished as runners-up in the tournament.

Raphael Onyedika (Club Brugge)

Raphael Onyedika featured 30 times and scored three goals as Club Brugge clinched the Belgian League.

Christy Ucheibe (Christy Uchebe)

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In addition to the men’s team, Christy Ucheibe, the midfield powerhouse of the Super Falcons, secured four trophies in Portugal.

Her team S. L. Benfica won the Liga BPI (Portuguese league), Taca de Portugal Feminina (Portuguese Women’s Cup), Taca de Liga Feminina (Portuguese Women’s League Cup), and the Super Taca de Portugal Feminina (Portuguese Women’s Super Cup).

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Joy As NFF Gifts Super Eagles Coach, Finidi George Car Worth N125m

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The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has presented the newly appointed Super Eagles coach, Finidi George, an official luxurious Mercedes-Benz G-Wagon car worth N125m

The gift is part of the NFF’s commitment to prioritizing the welfare of its employees, ensuring they receive the best treatment to excel in their roles.

READ ALSO: AFCON: ‘Nigeria Thirsty For Victory’ – Sports Minister Charges NFF, Peseiro

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The NFF’s gesture is seen as a demonstration of its dedication to supporting its employees and ensuring their well-being.

Reacting, Finidi George expressed gratitude to the NFF for their generosity, and confirmed that the federation is actively searching for a good apartment for him in the country’s capital.

 

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