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Nigeria escapes FIFA ban, Wenger in Liberia [Sport]

Nigeria escapes FIFA ban, Wenger in Liberia [Sport]

The Morning Call

Nigeria’s football has been marred by power struggles. Amaju Pinnick, who was elected head of Nigeria Football Federation in 2014, was in a stand-off with Chris Giwa, who had appealed the result and won a favourable court ruling in June.

But FIFA only recognized Pinnick as the legitimate leader of Nigerian football and the world football governing body which does not appreciate government interference in the running of football; had last week issued an ultimatum where it said it would ban Nigeria by 11am GMT Monday.

But on sunday, the country averted the ban when it recognised the Fifa-approved head of the NFF shortly before a suspension was due to take place.

This means now Amaju Pinnick takes back NFF leadership. But the NFF elections are due on September 20.

Former Brazil football chief handed four years sentence

A former president of Brazil’s soccer federation Jose Maria Marin was on Wednesday slapped with a 4 year jail term by a U.S. judge after being convicted on corruption charges related to the bribery scandal at FIFA.

He was also fined $1.2 million dollars and ordered to forfeit $3.34 million dollars.

Marin was convicted on December 22 2016 by a federal jury on six conspiracy counts, which included racketeering, wire fraud and money laundering.

He was among the first to stand trial over what U.S. prosecutors called a sprawling scheme involving payments of more than $200 million dollars of bribes and kickbacks in exchange for marketing and broadcast rights for soccer matches.

Marin now becomes the first FIFA official to be sentenced, and he had already served 13 months in prison. But his lawyer says they’ll appeal the verdict. Listen:

Wenger in Liberia, says he’s not aware of any honor

Arsene Wenger arrived in Liberia on Wednesday evening, with the ex-Arsenal boss set to be handed the country’s highest honour from president George Weah.

Wenger, who ended his 22-year association with the Gunners in May, will be inducted into Liberia’s Order of Distinction.

But in the wake of those reports that President George Weah is to award his former football coach with Liberia’s highest honor, the former Arsenal coach has out-rightly denied having knowledge of receiving any honor in the country.

He said: “I am not aware of any honor. I just came here to visit, because I promised George that one day, I will visit Liberia, and in return, I do not expect anything like award or honor. I am happy to be here.”

This also comes after Liberians expressed mixed reactions about the purported honor, in which the award ceremony is reportedly supposed to take place in the country’s capital, Monrovia, on Friday.

It was Arsene Wenger who took Weah to Europe, signing him for Monaco in 1988.

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The Morning Call

The Morning Call is about you. We want to share your opinions on our programme. If you want to contribute to The Morning Call, here are the best ways to get in touch : For more details on how to contribute, click here.