East African leaders on Wednesday hailed the awarding of the 2027 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) to a joint bid by Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
It is the first time the premier sport event in the continent will be staged by three countries after Ghana/Nigeria (2000) and Equatorial Guinea/Gabon (2012) co-hosted previous editions.
The trio won a contest also involving Botswana, Egypt and Senegal after favourites Algeria withdrew on the eve of the vote, saying they had a “new strategy for developing football”.
Egypt have hosted the biennial tournament five times, most recently in 2019, and Senegal once, in 1992. Botswana were hoping to stage the AFCON for the first time.
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“We are grateful to have the opportunity to host AFCON 2027 in collaboration with Kenya and Uganda,” Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan said on X (formerly Twitter).
“I congratulate everyone who played a role to make sure our country secures this rare opportunity.
“I now order the ministry of culture, arts and sports to make proper preparations, including to complete the construction of two new stadiums in Dodoma and Arusha on time, to the required standards.”
Kenya’s Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua also took to X to express his delight at the AFCON returning to east Africa for the first time since Ethiopia hosted it in 1976.
“It is quite exhilarating to receive the news that the joint bid by Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania to host the 2027 (AFCON) has… been accepted by the Confederation of African Football.
“The Pamoja (together) bid fronted by President @WilliamsRuto and the other heads of state was one of its kind as it underscored our readiness to work together to ensure the competition comes to East Africa.”
Nuur Mohamud Sheekh, a spokesman for the east African regional bloc IGAD, rejoiced in a social media post that the Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda bid had been successful.
“This show of confidence is a testament to our region’s passion & commitment to sports,” he said.
“We eagerly anticipate harnessing the unifying power of sports to foster harmony across our region & the African continent at large.”
Why I No Longer Have Whatsapp Group With Messi, Neymar – Suarez
Former Barcelona striker, Luis Suarez has explained why he no longer has a Whatsapp group with his former Blaugrana attacking teammates Lionel Messi and Neymar.
Suarez, along with Messi and Neymar, formed one of the most fearsome attacking troickas in history during their time together at Barca.
During the ESPN Bola de Prata ceremony, the Uruguay international spoke about the Whatsapp group he used to have with Messi and Neymar (as per ESPN):
“We had a WhatsApp group, but Leo changed his number.
“Ney also changed his number. … They change all the time, so we lost it. … But we talk a lot individually.”
Suarez is set to leave Brazilian club Gremio as a free agent following the conclusion of the 2023 season.
The 36-year-old scored 26 goals and provided 17 assists in 53 games across competitions for Gremio.
EPL: Ian Wright Hits Out At Man Utd Star For Disrespecting Hojlund
Arsenal legend, Ian Wright has hit out at Manchester United defender Diogo Dalot for not setting up Rasmus Hojlund in the Red Devils’ Premier League 3-0 loss to Bournemouth on Saturday.
During the encounter, Dalot, who was played in by Antony in the 67th minute, opted to shoot from a tight angle rather than find Hojlund.
Hojlund, who is yet to find his first league goal, was in a central area and would’ve had a simple close-range finish if the ball came his way.
But instead of cutting the ball back for the Denmark international, Dalot fired the ball into the side netting.
Speaking on Match of the Day, Wright claimed Dalot’s decision showed a lack of respect towards Hojlund.
Wright said: “It was for me, when I saw that it was Dalot, and at 1-0, we are talking about Hojlund’s come on now and he wants his chance.
“This is good play from them. He gets in, he’s got to square this. He’s got to square it to him.”
He continued, “I think the total lack of respect for him. Look, he’s had a shot from the most ridiculous angle.
“He’s upset with himself. But he doesn’t even look for Hojlund, has a ridiculous shot. And Bournemouth score a minute later. Hojlund, he’s got to be pulling him up in the dressing room about that.”
EPL: Why Everton Beat Us 2-0 – Cheslea Coach, Pochettino Opens Up
Chelsea head coach, Mauricio Pochettino has suggested why his team lost 2-0 against Everton in Sunday’s Premier League tie.
Pochettino watched as two goals from Lewis Dobbin and Abdoulaye Doucoure gave Everton all three points against the Blues at Goodison Park.
Speaking at his post-match interview after the game, Pochettino said his team lacked concentration during the encounter against Sean Dyche’s side.
“There are 11 players on the pitch that need to perform. The problem is why we arrive in this situation, it is difficult to explain,” Pochettino said.
“We know why we are dealing with this. Newcastle lose 3-0 and Everton was much better and credit for Everton but today I think we were better than Everton and we feel disappointed and frustrated.
“It is not only to dominate and play well but we cannot show this lack of concentration. We were punished too much today, too many positive things, I know it is difficult to talk about positive things in the position.”
Chelsea have now dropped to 12th position on the Premier League table after the defeat against Everton.
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