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Mikel Obi joins Kuwaiti club

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Former Nigeria captain, John Obi Mikel, has joined Al Kuwait SC, the Kuwaiti Premier League side on a year’s deal.

The announcement was made by the club on Thursday, after Mikel and Stoke City cancelled their contract by mutual consent.

Mikel’s new club finished third in the division last season behind Al-Qadsia and champions Al-Arabi.

The Nigerian spent 11 years and made 372 appearances across all competitions for Chelsea.

After Chelsea he played for Trabzonspor and Middlesbrough, before heading to China to spend two years with Tianjin Teda in the Chinese Super League.

Mikel returned to UK in August 2020 to play Stoke City.

Stoke boss Michael O’Neill told the club’s official website: ‘Although John triggered the second year of his contract, we always had an agreement in place whereby we would let him leave if a significant overseas opportunity came along.

‘John is a fantastic professional and was a huge presence for us last season both on and off the field, particularly with the young players in our first-team squad.

‘I really enjoyed working with him and would like to take this opportunity to thank him for his contribution and wish him every success for the future.’

The former Nigeria international only joined O’Neill’s team in August last year and made 41 appearances for them across all competitions as they finished 14th in the Championship table.

But Obi Mikel is now set to go on another footballing adventure in Asia, having also previously spent two years with Tianjin Teda in the Chinese Super League.

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Ronaldo makes dream second debut in Man Utd 4-1 win against Newcastle

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Cristiano Ronaldo had a dream second Manchester United debut with two goals to inspire a 4-1 win over Newcastle United at Old Trafford.

Ronaldo increased his United tally to 120 as he pounced on a first-half, setting Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men on course for the top of the Premier League table.

Newcastle grew into the game and did not allow that setback to dampen their spirits. This paid off in the second half when Miguel Almiron led a counter-attack and Allan Saint-Maximin slipped in Manquillo to finish.

But a United break proved every bit as efficient, with Luke Shaw carrying the ball forward and feeding Ronaldo to fire between Woodman’s legs.

David de Gea stood tall to block from Joelinton when Newcastle threatened another equaliser, but sublime finishes from Fernandes – from around 25 yards – and Lingard, skipping past Jamal Lewis in the box, made the game safe amid a party atmosphere.

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Eight Brazil players barred from playing EPL, Champions League

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FIFA has stopped Premier League clubs from selecting Brazilian players they did not release for international duty for five days at the request of the country’s Football Association.

The players who were not released for the World Cup qualifiers against Argentina and Peru include Raphinha of Leeds, Manchester United’s Fred, Thiago Silva at Chelsea, Manchester City’s Ederson and Gabriel Jesus, as well as Alisson, Roberto Firmino and Fabinho at Liverpool.

It means Fred and Thiago Silva would also be ineligible for Manchester United’s visit to Young Boys and Chelsea’s clash with Zenit St Petersburg in the Champions League on Tuesday.

According to FIFA Article 22 of its Disciplinary Code, the sanctions that may be applied if these restrictions are ignored include fines and forfeiting the match 3-0, although it is unclear what might happen if Leeds and Liverpool, who meet at Elland Road on Super Sunday, both defied any FIFA ruling.

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Nigeria vs Cape Verde: Super Eagles win 2-1

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A 75th-minute own goal by Cape Verde earned Nigeria a 2-1 win in their qualifying clash in Mindelo on Tuesday.

Dylan dos Santos steered the home team in front after 19 minutes.

Victor Osimhen brought Nigeria back to the game, stabbing home from close range.

In the second half, Through a  backpass to his goalkeeper, Kenny Santos scored an own goal.

Victory took the Eagles to maximum six points from two matches, three points ahead of second –placed Liberia.

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