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Messi to finish his career at Barca – Koeman

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Ronald Koeman says Lionel Messi “has to finish his career at Barcelona”, with the Blaugrana boss expecting a contract extension for the mercurial Argentine to be announced “soon”.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner is yet to make an official decision on his future, with the 33-year-old still seeing his current deal run down towards free agency.

The expectation is, however, that he will extend a career-long association with the Liga heavyweights, with fresh terms on the table and ready to be signed.

Koeman told Sport when asked for an update on a long-running saga in Catalunya: “Messi has to finish his career at Barcelona, so I hope we can make it official soon.”

Barca president Joan Laporta has stated on a regular basis, even before he returned to office at Camp Nou, that he believes Messi will stay put.

That message has been reiterated, although he has suggested that paperwork will not be completed imminently by a man currently away on Copa America duty with his country.

“The renewal isn’t at an advanced stage,” Laporta has admitted.

“It’s okay, I believe that Leo’s boots will stay on Camp Nou’s pitch.

“I can’t contemplate a no from Messi; he wants to stay. We’re doing what we can but there’s no need to seduce him.”

While waiting on a call from Messi, Barca are working hard to put more pieces of a trophy-winning puzzle in place alongside their iconic captain.

Deals have been done for Sergio Aguero, Eric Garcia and Emerson Royal, while Memphis Depay is expected to complete a switch from Lyon as a free agent.

Koeman is pleased with progress being made on the recruitment front, with the Dutchman adding: “We are working on building a competitive team, one that will be much stronger than in previous seasons.”

Ronald Koeman is already looking ahead to next season at Barcelona and he was spotted in Amsterdam for the Netherlands’ game against Austria at Euro 2020 on Thursday evening.

Although Koeman himself is Dutch and was their coach during qualifying, meaning he could well have been attending just to see his team play, it’s said that he was there to watch Memphis Depay.

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The domestic seasons might have ended, but Ronald Koeman is already looking ahead to next season at Barcelona and he was spotted in Amsterdam for the Netherlands’ game against Austria at Euro 2020 on Thursday evening.

Although Koeman himself is Dutch and was their coach during qualifying, meaning he could well have been attending just to see his team play, it’s said that he was there to watch Memphis Depay.

Memphis is expected to join Barcelona in the coming days or weeks. Koeman himself said on Wednesday that talks were going in the right direction and he took the chance to watch the player on Thursday night.

Koeman will return to Catalonia to take Barcelona’s pre-season training from July 12.

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BREAKING: Oborududu settles for silver at Tokyo Olympics

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Nigeria’s Blessing Oborududu suffered a 1-4 loss to Tamyra Marianna Stock Mensah of the United States in the final of Tokyo Olympic women’s wrestling event to claim a silver medal.

 

Oborududu has won a Gold medal at the African Wrestling Championships every year for the last 11 years, except for 2012 when she did not enter due to competing in the 2012 Summer Olympics.

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Olympiacos sign Henry Onyekuru on permanent deal

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Olympiacos FC have announced the signing of forward Henry Onyekuru from Ligue 1 club Monaco.

 

The 24-year-old Nigerian forward arrived in Greece to seal a permanent move on Saturday after spending last season on loan at Galatasaray.

 

Olympiacos have confirmed the signing of the 24-year-old star on their official website by stating: “Olympiacos have announced the acquisition of international ace, Henry Onyekuru.

 

“The Nigerian, born on June 5, 1997, in Lagos, has been acquired from Monaco after signing a four-year contract.

 

“Having spent five years at Aspire Academy, Onyekuru took the first big step in his career in 2015 by signing a contract with Eupen.

“His 30 goals in 60 games with the Belgian club attracted several clubs with Everton acquiring his services in 2017. The Nigerian spent the next two seasons on loan at Anderlecht (28 assists, 10 goals) and Galatasaray (31 assists and 14 goals) respectively.”

 

Speaking after signing for the team, Onyekuru said: “I know it is a big club in Greece, one of the biggest and they have good ambition and target every season and they are always in the Champions League.

 

“I also know of two Nigerians who played here before and I am just here to contribute and keep on pushing and also to be champions countless times, achieve more goals and aims with the club.

On June 30, 2017, Onyekuru joined Premier League side, Everton, for £7 million and was immediately loaned out to Anderlecht where he was handed the number 9 jersey.

Onyekuru, who made his debut for the Super Eagles in a 3-0 friendly win over Togo on June 1, 2017, is part of the key players for head coach Gernot Rohr ahead of the upcoming World Cup qualifying matches in September.

 

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Nigeria wins first medal at Tokyo Olympics in long jump

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Nigeria on Tuesday morning won her first medal at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics in long jump through Ese Brume.
Brume jumped 6.97 metres to clinch the bronze medal in the event.
The world championship bronze medalist became the first athlete to claim an Olympic medal for Nigeria in 13 years.
Malaika Mihambo, the reigning world champion, claimed the gold medal with a 7.00m jump.
American athlete, Brittney Reese, who won gold in London 2012, finished second with 6.97m to take the silver medal.
Brume went right into the lead with her first jump of 6.97m but she went behind after she leaped 6.67 meters in the second jump and recorded a foul jump at the third attempt.
Early on, the medal contenders had bunched up at the top with Mihambo moving within 2cm of Brume’s 6.97m and Serbia’s Ivana Spanovic in third with 6.91m.
Reese then took the top spot on her third attempt, moving in front of Brume’s jump of 6.97m by virtue of having the second-longest effort, but the Nigerian’s second-best jump of 6.88m on her fourth attempt put her back into the overall lead.
The 6.87m jump by Reese on her fourth attempt meant she trailed Brume by a centimeter. But her fifth attempt of 6.95m got her to the top.
In the final round, it was a battle between Mihambo, Reese and Brume for the gold medal.
On Mihambo’s last jump, she scored 7.00m to move from bronze into gold position.
Brume had her foot well behind the line in her last jump (6.90m) which did not improve on her best, forcing her to settle for bronze.

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