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Entrepreneur advocates sports as tool for national unity



Entrepreneur advocates sports as tool for national unity

Mrs Adedayo Benjamins-Laniyi, a media entrepreneur and politician, has called for the use of sports to promote unity, peace and development in Nigeria.

Benjamins-Laniyi made the call on Wednesday in Abuja at a press briefing on the sidelines of the inaugural Adedayo Benjamins-Laniyi (ABL) FCT unity football championship.

She said the football competition, with participation of the six area councils in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) was meant to foster unity and discover grassroot talents for the national teams.

“We are here to make a statement that we can achieve unity through sports and build a new prosperous nation.

“This initiative, the Adedayo Benjamins-Laniyi sports tournament is an expression of premium sports for unity and indeed propelling our Nigerian youth through grassroots representation in the six area councils of the FCT,” she said.

The CEO of Doxa Group, said she would continue to work with the the FCT sports council and other relevant stakeholders to promote sports and empower Nigerian youths.

“I rise as a mother, a media entrepreneur, a politician, as a patriot to make a call for unity through sports.
“What makes a nation stand is unity, so we should rise above tribe, religion and race,” she said.

Earlier, Luka Istifanus, Director, FCT Sports Council, thanked the organiser of the competition for the laudable initiative.

He said the FCT was committed to grassroots sports development and improving it’s participation in major competitions such as the National Sports Festival (NSF) and National Youth Games (NYG).

NAN reports that over 80 teams and 1,200 players from the six FCT area councils have been slugging it at the ABL championship, which is now in the quarter-finals stage.

The grand-finale of the competition is slated for Saturday at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja.



Napoli Sack Rudi Garcia, Announce Mazzarri As Replacement



Serie A giants Napoli have announced the departure of coach Rudi Garcia after a poor spell and announced his successor with immediate effect

Reigning Serie A champions Napoli have announced the departure of French manager Rudi Garcia after a poor run of form that sees the Partenopei handing on to faint hopes of defending the Scudetto title won last season.

Napoli have only claimed one win in their last four matches in all competitions, trailing Serie A leaders Inter by 10 points while also trailing Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League by five points.

Osimhen gets new coach as Napoli reportedly appoint Walter Mazzarri to replace Rudi Garcia

With the Partenopei looking a lot worse than they did at this stage last season, Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has chosen to act swiftly before things get out of hand.

The club chief revealed that Garcia had been relieved of his duty, after posting a message on social media platform X to announce the arrival of the Frenchman’s replacement.

Napoli announce Garcia successor
That replacement is a former Napoli manager Walter Mazzarri[url][/url], who was welcomed back to the club by De Laurentiis, who was also the owner during his last spell at the club.

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Wherever I went, people abused me every day, spat at me – David Beckham reveals how his 1998 World Cup red card still hurts



Football icon, David Beckham has laid bare the lingering pain he felt he caused his family following the red card he received at the 1998 World Cup, saying his dismissal left him a “mess.”

This was revealed in a new Netflix documentary series entitled “Beckham”, set for release on Wednesday, October 4 in which the ex-Manchester, PSG and Real Madrid midfielder looks back on his career.

Beckham, now 48 and the co-owner of MLS franchise Inter Miami, was sent off for kicking the back of Diego Simeone’s leg during a last-16 World Cup tie against Argentina.

England went on to lose the match following a penalty shoot-out, with Beckham widely blamed for the defeat with rival fans repeatedly jeering him when in action for Manchester United during the following season.

In the documentary, his wife, Victoria Beckham said the continued abuse left her husband “absolutely clinically depressed” as the then 23-year-old tried to deal with the fallout alongside becoming a father for the first time in March 1999.

Beckham admitted the abuse “took a toll on me that I never knew myself”.

He said: “I wish there was a pill you could take which could erase certain memories. I made a stupid mistake. It changed my life.

“We were in America (on holiday after the World Cup), just about to have our first baby, and I thought, ‘we will be fine. In a day or two people will have forgotten’.”

“I don’t think I have ever talked about it, just because I can’t. I find it hard to talk through what I went through because it was so extreme.

“Wherever I went, I got abused every single day — to walk down the street and to see people look at you in a certain way, spit at you, abuse you, come up to your face and say some of the things they said, that is difficult.

“I wasn’t eating, I wasn’t sleeping. I was a mess. I didn’t know what to do.”

“It brought a lot of attention that I would never wish on anyone, let alone my parents, and I can’t forgive myself for that.

“That is the tough part of what happened, because I was the one that made the mistake.

“It is only now that I am 47 years old, it is now that I beat myself up about it (still).”

Beckham’s wife also received abuse while attending football matches to support her husband.

“As horrible as it was to look up to Victoria in the stand (getting that abuse), it was the one thing which spurred me on,” he said.

But the 1998/99 season ended in triumph on the field, with a United side managed by Alex Ferguson winning a remarkable treble of the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League, with the European triumph sealed by two stunning goals in stoppage time in the final against Bayern Munich.

Beckham’s former United and England team-mate Gary Neville, who is part of the producers of the documentary, recalled how the pair were “absolutely destroying teams” down the right flank for United.

Neville said: I was supporting him in a way which was to be fair, I would say I was a side dish really. Not the beef. I was the mustard on the side.”

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