Wenger regrets 'sacrificing everything' at Arsenal for 22 years

Wenger admitted he was obsessed with ensuring Arsenal’s success on the pitch, adding that sacrifices in his personal life were one the hardest parts of being a manager.

Arsene Wenger, who stayed at English club side Arsenal for 22 years has said ‘the decision to stay at the same club for such a long time’ may have been the biggest mistake of his career and that he regrets sacrificing “everything” for the job.

The 68-year-old Frenchman, who was appointed in Oct. 1996,
left the north London club at the end of last season after winning three Premier League titles and seven FA Cups.

In an interview with French outlet RTL, Wenger said he will make a decision on his future “in the next few months”.

When asked what was the biggest mistake of his career, Wenger said: “Perhaps staying at the same club for 22 years.

“I’m someone who likes new things, likes change. But I also like challenges. I was a little bit of a prisoner to my challenge each time.”

Arsenal obsession cost me personally

Wenger admitted he was obsessed with ensuring Arsenal’s success on the pitch, adding that sacrifices in his personal life were one the hardest parts of being a manager.

“I regret having sacrificed everything I did because I realise I’ve hurt a lot of people around me,” he added.

“I’ve neglected a lot of people. I’ve neglected my family, I’ve neglected many close ones. Deep down though, the obsessed man is selfish in his pursuit of what he loves. He ignores a lot of other things. But it’s a bone to chase at the same time.”

Wenger tips former players Vieira, Henry

Wenger was also confident that former Arsenal players Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira, who are now pursuing coaching careers, have the qualities to succeed at the top level.

However, Wenger warned the French pair of the sacrifices involved in following a coaching career.

“Often, I’m asked if Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira will be good managers and I always answer yes,” he said.

“They have all the qualities; they are intelligent, they know football, they have excellent skill sets, but do they want to sacrifice what needs to be sacrificed to do only that? It’s an obsession which bounces around your head day and night.”

Vieira recently became Nice coach, while Henry, assistant to Belgium boss Roberto Martinez at the World Cup, has quit his Sky Sports punditry role to focus on becoming a manager.

Aubameyang, Iwobi dazzle as Arsenal’s Wenger bows out at Emirates

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Cameroon legend Eto'o joins Xavi and Sneijder at Qatar Sports Club

Eto’o, a four-time African footballer of the year, becomes the latest big-name arrival to join the Qatar Stars League after ex-Spain international Xavi and former Netherlands playmaker Wesley Sneijd

African football legend and ex-Cameroon captain Samuel Eto’o has joined the 13th club of his long career when he signed for Qatar Sports Club on a free transfer, days after leaving Turkish club Konyaspor by mutual consent.

Eto’o, a four-time African footballer of the year, becomes the latest big-name arrival to join the Qatar Stars League after ex-Spain international Xavi and former Netherlands playmaker Wesley Sneijder.

The 37 year old striker played with Xavi at Barcelona and Sneijder at Inter Milan, winning the Champions League with both teams.

Eto’o is Cameroon’s all-time leading goalscorer with 56 goals, and twice an African Cup of Nations winner.

Cameroon appoints Clarence Seedorf as new head coach of the Indomitable Lions

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FIFA threatens to ban Ghana over govt meddling in football

The letter was addressed to head of a Ghana government liaison team that was tasked to hold talks with FIFA to avert a ban after government suspended local football activities.

Football’s world governing body, FIFA, has warned the government of Ghana over plans to liquidate the Ghana Football Association (GFA) following a corruption scandal led by an investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas.

In a statement issued on August 13, 2018; and signed by FIFA General-Secretary Fatma Samoura, the body said it was particularly worried about government’s undue interference in the affairs of the GFA in clear contravention to FIFA statutes.

The statement read in part, “Under these circumstances, the Bureau based on article 16 paragraph 1 of the FIFA statutes decided on 11 August 2018 that if the petition to start the liquidation process of the GFA is not withdrawn by Monday, 27 August 2018 at 12h00 (CET), the GFA will be suspended with immediate effect.

“The suspension would be lifted only once the above-mentioned petition is withdrawn and FIFA is given written proof thereof,” the statement added.

The letter was addressed to head of a Ghana government liaison team that was tasked to hold talks with FIFA to avert a ban after government suspended local football activities.

One June 12, 2018, an Accra High Court placed an interim injunction on the activities of the GFA following an application by the Attorney General.

A month later, another High Court in Accra ordered that members, directors and officers of the GFA be restrained from exercising their powers in relation to the body’s activities. It also appointed a state body as liquidator.

All local football activities have been grounded since June this year after the investigative piece revealed corruption on the part of match officials across the football chain.

The GFA president at the time, who was on FIFA and CAF committees, Kwesi Nyantakyi, was also involved in corrupt practices as captured on tape. he has since been suspended from football activities as a probe continues into the allegations.

AFCON U17 qualifiers: CAF disqualifies 11 overage players [Football Planet]

According to CAF, MRI tests have proved that certain players are overage and not eligible for the tournament.

Former Nigeria winger, Emmanuel Amuneke, was on Monday named Tanzania national team coach on a two-year deal. The 1994 African Cup of Nations winner was unveiled at a press conference by Tanzania Football Federation and will be in charge of the Taifa Stars alongside local assistants and trainers.

The 2019 U-17 African Cup of Nations CECAFA qualifiers got underway in Tanzania on Sunday. Only one team will advance from the qualifiers, from the CECAFA zone, to join the other continental qualifiers at the 2019 U-17 AFCON, slated for May 12-26 2019 in Tanzania.

At the same time, the Confederation of African Football has disqualified 11 overage players ahead of the start of the 2019 U-17 African Cup of Nations CECAFA qualifiers. According to CAF, MRI tests have proved that certain players are overage and not eligible for the tournament.

In this episode we spoke to Jeff Kinyanjui, a sports journalist in Nairobi Kenya. He shares his views on ‘age fraud’ that has been rampant in African youth championships. In April 2013, nine players were excluded from the African Under-17 Championship in Morocco after MRI wrist scans showed them to be over the age limit.

Still on the under 17s Cameroon were crowned champion of the tournament of the Union of Central African Football Federations, after the final played on Sunday against the republic of Congo, at the Malabo Stadium in Equatorial Guinea.

Dutch legends Clarence Seedorf and Patrick Kluivert were last week unveiled as Cameroon national team head and assistant coach respectively. The duo signed a four-year contract with the continental champions ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations on home soil next year and are tasked to win the tournament. The duo is tasked with qualifying the Indomitable Lions for the 2021 Afcon and 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar.

Guinea's Naby Keita impresses in Liverpool debut

23 year old Naby Keita, who was signed by Jurgen Klopp in July for up to $79m, was excellent on his debut for the English club side, dominating the midfield and playing a role in Mohamed Salah’s openi

Guinea’s national football captain, Naby Keita announced himself on the English Premier League scene with a Man of the Match performance in Liverpool’s 4-0 win over West Ham on Sunday.

The 23 year old midfielder who was signed by Jurgen Klopp in July for up to $79m, was excellent on his debut for the English club side, dominating the midfield and playing a role in Mohamed Salah’s opening goal in the 19th minute.

Reactions to Keita’s debut

His performance earned him plaudits from manager, Jurgen Klopp, fellow players, pundits and the fans.

‘‘So Naby is in because he’s a really good footballer and I’ve said it from the beginning that he’s obviously settled really quick and has a similar style of play in a similar position as he did at Leipzig,’‘ said Klopp after the match.

ALSO READ: Liverpool’s African kings Salah, Mane score in dominant win over West Ham

“I knew he was an aggressive player but by taking the No 8 shirt which has been vacant since Steven Gerrard left Liverpool three years ago, Keita proved before a ball was even kicked that he does not shy away from a challenge,’‘ said former Liverpool midfielder-turned-pundit, Jamie Redknapp.

Liverpool fans have waited almost a year to see Keita in action after he was initially signed 12 months ago from RB Leipzig.

Fellow players, Mane and James Milner also heaped praise on the new signing.

‘‘He is a ball winner with great drive and fantastic ability. I have seen him get out of some ridiculous situations in training where he had no right to do it,’‘ Milner on Naby Keita.

“I’m happy for him. He played very, very well. Everybody was happy about the job he did for us,’‘ said Sadio Mane.

Introducing Naby Keita

Keita, who made his debut for the Guinea national team in July 2013, has played for European clubs RB Leipzig, Red Bull Salzburg and FC Istres before his Anfield move.

He is described as a box-to-box central midfielder, with ability to distribute the ball with range and accuracy, while also scoring goals frequently.

Keita has been compared to France’s N’Golo Kanté and Portugal legend Deco.

Liverpool's African kings Salah, Mane score in dominant win over West Ham

Egypt’s Salah, whose record goal scoring earned him the Golden Boot last season with 32 goals, opened the scoring on Sunday at Anfield, tapping in Andy Robertson’s cross.

Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane picked off from where they stopped last season as they scored in a dominant win over West Ham in the English club’s premier league’s opener.

Egypt’s Salah, whose record goal scoring earned him the Golden Boot last season with 32 goals, opened the scoring on Sunday at Anfield, tapping in Andy Robertson’s cross.

Salah’s goal featured an important contribution from new signing, Guinean Naby Keita, who cost 50 million pounds ($63.84m) from RB Leipzig.

Senegal’s captain, Mane who was recently handed the significant No. 10 jersey scored Liverpool’s second and third goals, in a game that would eventually end 4-0.

Substitute Daniel Sturridge made it four just seconds after coming on.

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