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Cristiano Ronaldo returns to Manchester United after 12 years

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Ronaldo has been with Juventus since 2018. He will rejoin, the club with which he established himself as a superstar.

After 12 years in which he has claimed a dozen or more major trophies and broken a string of records, Cristiano Ronaldo will return to Manchester United (in England), where he first established himself as a superstar – one of the finest players – leaving Juventus on a two-year contract.

The team confirmed Ronaldo’s return on Friday, saying the deal was “subject to agreement of personal terms, visa and medical.”

The rush of people logging on to read the announcement crashed Manchester United’s website.

A reunion that many United fans have longed for over much of the last decade materialized only at the last minute, thanks in part to the public and private interventions of several of Ronaldo’s former teammates, his long-term mentor, Alex Ferguson, and his colleague with the Portuguese international side, and now United, Bruno Fernandes.

On Thursday evening, it appeared that Ronaldo would be returning to Manchester — but to play for the team across the city.

He had informed Massimiliano Allegri, the Juventus manager, that he had no intention of playing for the team again, while his agent, Jorge Mendes, was trying to negotiate a salary package with Manchester City, the reigning Premier League champion.

Ronaldo was a dominant force for Manchester United earlier in his career.

City’s appetite for the deal, though, was said to be tepid at best; the impetus had all been from Ronaldo’s representatives. City refused to countenance paying Juventus a fee for a player it was desperate to offload as it sought to cut costs in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic.

City’s best offer was a swap deal including Raheem Sterling, the English forward, which Juventus rejected. By Friday morning, the club was distancing itself from signing Ronaldo.

United, though, had been spurred into action by the thought of one of its most beloved alumni playing for a direct rival. Several former United players, including Rio Ferdinand and Wayne Rooney, as well as Ferguson, either reached out in private or spoke out in public to urge Ronaldo not to forget where in the northwest of England his loyalties lie.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, the club’s coach, spoke glowingly of Ronaldo in a news media conference on Friday. “He knows we’re always here,” Solskjaer said.

The club, with permission by its owners, the Glazer family, agreed to a salary package for the next two seasons with Ronaldo’s representatives, and eventually offered Juventus a fee that could rise close to $40 million, depending on the 36-year-old’s success with the team during his second stint.

As the details were being finalized, all Ronaldo could do was wait. He had been pictured, earlier on Friday, boarding a private jet near Turin, Italy, where Juventus is based. At that stage, his destination was unknown. A few hours later, as far as United’s fans, his former teammates and his current manager are concerned, he was heading for the only place he could: home.

New York Times

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BREAKING: Man Utd’s senior officials in urgent meeting to discuss Solskjaer’s sack

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Senior officials at Manchester United are having an emergency meeting today, to discuss if Ole Gunnar Solskjaer should be fired as manager.

This comes 24 hours after the Red Devils were humiliated 5-0 by Liverpool at Old Trafford.

Mohamed Salah scored a hat-trick, while Naby Keita and Diogo Jota also got on the scoresheet, as United put the sword in front of their fans.

The result saw Liverpool climb back into second place with 21 points, one behind leaders Chelsea, while United dropped to seventh place with 14 points.

On Monday, United’s managing director, Richard Arnold, cancelled all his appointments to hold talks with the owners, The Glazer family, about Solskjaer’s position.

According to transfer expert, Fabrizio Romano, he tweeted: “Manchester United’s managing director Richard Arnold is understood to have cancelled all appointments on Monday to hold talks with Glazer about Ole Gunnar Solskjaer position.

“Decision on Solskjær’s future still to be made. Conversations on.”

Daily Post

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AWCON qualifiers: Falcons beat Black Queens on aggregate, to face Cote d’Ivoire

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Super Falcons

Super Falcons have progressed into the next round of the qualifiers for the African Women Nations Cup despite losing 1-0 to the Black Queens of Ghana in the reverse fixture on Sunday.

The Nigerian ladies had beaten their Ghanian counterparts 2-0 in the first leg played on last Wednesday but succumbed to a 1-0 defeat in Accra on Sunday which was not enough to prevent them from progressing into the last round of the qualifiers.

They will play the Lady Elephants of Cote d’Ivoire, in February 2022 in the last round of the qualifeirs.

Ghana coach Mercy Tagoe-Quarcoo largely kept faith with the side that started in the first leg, offering starting places to Djurgardens ace Portia Boakye and the Spainbased duo of Adubea and Grace Asantewaa. Barcelona attacker Asisat Oshoala, as expected, led the Nigerian side, which boasted of the experienced duo of Osinachi Ohale and Onome Ebi. Required to score twice to stand any chance of overturning the first-leg result, Ghana started on the front foot, creating a series of chances that went wasting, owing to poor finishing and naivety in front of goal.

READ ALSO: https://newstrends.ng/2021/10/24/morocco-2022-race-super-falcons-reach-final-round-to-play-lady-elephants/

The visitors, on the other hand, sat back, opting to exploit openings as the hosts threw women forward.

Like the Black Queens, the Super Falcons were found wanting with the final ball. In the 22nd minute, Adubea beautifully chest-controlled a ball over-the-top into the opposition penalty box but the Nigerian defence ultimately reacted well to block a final shot on goal.

Moments later, Gladys Amfobea saw a header coolly collected by goalkeeper Chiamaka Nnadozie after captain Portia Boakye delivered a long, searching ball from a deep free-kick.

New Telegraph

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Morocco 2022 Race: Super Falcons reach final round, to play Lady Elephants

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Super Falcons

 The Super Falcons fought a tough battle to edge out Ghana’s Black Queens and reach the final round of the qualification series for next year’s Women Africa Cup of Nations to be hosted by Morocco. A lone goal defeat in Accra on Sunday evening meant the nine-time African champions survived with a 2-1 aggregate win over their hosts.

Both teams finished with 10 players after Ghana’s captain Portia Boakye was dismissed for a second bookable offence, and minutes after, Nigeria’s left back Glory Ogbonna was expelled by Ivorian referee Zomadre Sonia Kore.

The lively Princella Adubea got Ghana’s goal midway into the second half as the Super Falcons were expecting adherence to fair play principle.

Afterwards, captain Asisat Oshoala missed an opportunity to draw Nigeria level. With the strong scent of blood, the Black Queens launched onslaught after onslaught but could not get the goal that would have tied the fixture and make penalty shootout inevitable at the Accra Sports Stadium.

The Falcons progressed to the final round where they play the Lady Elephants of Cote d’Ivoire, in February 2022.

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