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Football: Nigeria coach keeps out skipper Yobo again

Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi has again axed skipper Joseph Yobo from a series of matches that include crucial 2014 World Cup qualifiers against Kenya and Namibia in June. Keshi, unveiling his selection Thursday, again kept out the Fenerbahce defender from a busy schedule between the end of May and mid-July during which the African champions could well play as many as 10 matches. Yobo was overlooked for last month's World Cup qualifying match at home to Kenya leading to a huge row with coach Stephen Keshi this week.

Soccer-Benitez abuse affects players, says Chelsea's Mikel

LONDON, March 11 (Reuters) - Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel believes fan negativity is affecting the players at the Premier League club. Interim manager Rafael Benitez has come in for a barrage of criticism from Chelsea supporters since he was parachuted into the manager's job following the sacking of terrace favourite Roberto Di Matteo in November, prompting angry words from the Spaniard himself last month.

Soccer-Martins gets Nigeria recall for World Cup tie

ABUJA, March 8 (Reuters) - Nigeria have recalled striker Obafemi Martins for their World Cup soccer qualifier against Kenya after leaving him out of their successful African Nations Cup campaign. There is no place in the squad for 32-year-old central defender Joseph Yobo, Nigeria's most capped international with 95 appearances, who started one game at the Nations Cup in South Africa before being dropped by coach Stephen Keshi.

Football: Injured Emenike out of Nigeria World Cup qualifier

Injured Spartak Moscow striker Emmanuel Emenike has been left out of Nigeria's squad for the World Cup qualifier against Kenya on March 23. Emenike, who was top scorer in the recent Africa Cup of Nations winning campaign, is nursing a long-term hamstring injury which he suffered during the continental competition in South Africa. However, Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi has recalled Levante striker Obafemi Martins, who was not picked for the Nations Cup.

UPDATE 2-Soccer-Dutch championship summaries

Feb 17 (Infostrada Sports) - Summaries from the Dutch championship matches on Sunday Sunday, February 17 RKC Waalwijk 0 Missed penalty: Robert Braber 60 Ajax Amsterdam 2 Niklas Moisander 22, Christian Eriksen 40 Halftime: 0-2; Attendance: 6,000 - - - PEC Zwolle 3 Graziano Pelle 2og, Darryl Lachman 6, Denni Avdic 75 Feyenoord 2 Graziano Pelle 33,34 Halftime: 2-2; Attendance: 11,324 - - - ADO Den Haag 2 Danny Holla 24, Santi Kolk 36

CORRECTED-Soccer-Nigeria heroes Mikel and Moses can lift Chelsea - Benitez

(Changes quarter-finals to fifth round in last para) LONDON, Feb 15 (Reuters) - The return of African Nations Cup heroes John Obi Mikel and Victor Moses will add an extra dimension to Chelsea's squad for the last three months of the season, interim manager Rafael Benitez said on Friday. The Nigerian pair, who helped their country beat Burkina Faso 1-0 in last weekend's Nations Cup final in Johannesburg, could be recalled by the European champions for Sunday's FA Cup fourth-round replay at home to third tier Brentford.

Football: Triumphant Nigeria returns home to cash rewards

Nigeria's Super Eagles arrived home Tuesday after winning the country's first Africa Cup of Nations trophy in nearly two decades and were welcomed by adoring crowds as well as millions of dollars in rewards. Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan announced at a reception for the team late Tuesday that coach Stephen Keshi would receive $64,000 from the government, while the players would receive half of that plus a plot of land in the capital. Jonathan also listed another $4.2 million pledged by prominent Nigerians for the team and staff.

Football: Triumphant Nigeria arrive home to heroes welcome

Nigeria's Super Eagles arrived back home on Tuesday after winning the country's first Africa Cup of Nations trophy in nearly two decades and were welcomed by adoring crowds ahead of meeting the president. Hundreds welcomed the team back at the airport in the capital of Abuja before a ceremony later in the afternoon on the grounds of the National Stadium. They were also due to attend a reception late Tuesday, to be hosted by President Goodluck Jonathan.

Football: Triumphant Nigeria arrive home to heroes welcome

Nigeria's Super Eagles arrived back home here on Tuesday, after winning the country's first Africa Cup of Nations trophy in nearly two decades and were welcomed by adoring crowds ahead of meeting the president. Hundreds welcomed the team back at the airport in the capital of Abuja before an ceremony later in the afternoon at the National Stadium. They were also due to attend a reception on Tuesday, to be hosted by President Goodluck Jonathan.

Football: Unlikely hero Mba seeks dream Europe move

Nigeria's unlikely hero in the final of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, Sunday Mba, has said he hopes he has done enough to earn a dream move to Europe. On Sunday in Johannesburg, the 24-year-old Warri Wolves forward scored the goal that ended Nigeria's 19-year wait for a continental glory as they won their third Nations Cup trophy at the expense of Burkina Faso. In the 1994 final in Tunisia, Emmanuel Amuneke came off the bench to fire two goals past Zambia and give the Super Eagles their second Nations Cup triumph after they first won the tournament on home soil in 1980.
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