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Arsenal survive West Ham scare in London Derby

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On-loan Manchester United star, Jesse Lingard opened the scoring on Sunday as Arsenal pegged West Ham in a London Derby that saw David Moyes’ side netting five of the six goals.

The English midfielder, who has been enjoying a fine form with the Hammers, scored a screamer in the 15th minute to give them the lead in a match that ended 3-3.

One goal each from Jarrod Bowen and Thomas Soucek – all in the first half- saw West Ham race to a 3-0 lead in a game of two halves.

But own goals from Soucek and Craig Dawson cut Arsenal’s deficit before Alexandre Lacazette’s header rescued a point eight minutes from time.

A share of the spoils from a thrilling encounter did little for either side’s hopes of a top-four finish.

West Ham remain in fifth, but are two points adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea.

Arsenal’s realistic hopes of Champions League football next season now hinge on success in the Europa League as they are nine points adrift of the top four down in ninth.

“I am very disappointed because I cannot accept my team to play in the manner as we did for certain periods in the first half,” said Coach Arteta.

“What I expect is for us to play at the level we showed in the second half. We could have scored six or seven goals.

“We are all the time in reverse because we have two faces. The first face is about giving goals to the opponent and not doing what we have to do and it is not good enough.”

Hammers boss David Moyes has been accused of not being brave enough to take games to traditional top six opponents despite a season that has surpassed all expectations.

The Gunners were all over the place defensively in the opening half-hour and were caught out again when Michail Antonio’s header was deflected in by Soucek.

A week on from being dropped for ill-discipline prior to the North London derby, Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was hauled off by Arteta 10 minutes from time as he chased an equaliser.

But Aubameyang was still making his way back to the bench when Lacazette headed home another brilliant cross from the Arsenal right, this time by Nicolas Pepe.

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Mourinho Compares Victor Osimhen to one of the African legend, Didier Drogba

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Victor Osimhen

AS Roma manager, Jose Mourinho, has compared Super Eagles of Nigeria and Napoli of Italy hitman, Victor Osimhen, to Chelsea and Ivory Coast legend, Didier Drogba.

NEWSBREAK reports that the  Nigerian striker netted a world-class goal as his side, Napoli, marched towards the Serie A title on Sunday. Osimhen’s classic goal came against Mourinho’s Roma at the Diego Maradona stadium where Napoli won 2-1.

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Speaking after the match, Mourinho, a former Chelsea, Manchester United and Real Madrid manager, said: “He (Osimhen) is of the same level as Drogba, but Didier didn’t dive.

“If Victor changes, then OK. I’d buy him if I was at a club with a lot of money. However, if he does go to England one day, he needs to change, because in Italy they put up with this sort of behaviour, whereas in the Premier League, they’d come down hard on him.”

He added: “I told him that he scored a wonderful goal and needs to stop diving so much. His goal was fantastic, he did the same thing when we met earlier this season, so he’s a fantastic player. But he mustn’t dive.”

Osimhen, 24, is currently the highest goal scorer in the Italian league Serie A with 14 goals scored in 16 matches.

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Kelechi Iheanacho’s record goal helps Leicester qualify for last 16 FA Cup

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Leicester city needed the goal from Nigerian footballer Kelechi Iheanacho to avoid a shock elimination from the FA Cup with a 1-0 win at Walsall on Saturday.

The Nigerian has scored more goals in the competition than any other player since making his debut in 2016.

Iheanacho’s 17th goal in 23 FA Cup appearances had some fortune as his strike from the edge of the box took a deflection for the only goal 23 minutes from time.

Leicester, Leeds and Man United join Manchester City as the first four sides to book their place in the last 16 of the competition.

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French footballer gets 30-year ban for punching referee

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An amateur footballer in France, described as a “fanatic”, was on Friday banned from playing for 30 years for punching a referee.

“The penalty is appropriate. These fanatics must not be able to set foot on a football pitch again. They have no place there,” said Benoit Laine, president of the Loiret football district in central France.

The 25-year-old player, who was not named by officials, was angry at being sent off while featuring for Entente Sportive Gatinaise in a local cup game on January 8.

He punched the referee so hard that the official was signed off work for two days.

The team was also kicked out of the tournament for the next two seasons.

AFP

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