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    CARABAO CUP FINAL: Everything You Need To Know About Arsenal Vs Man City Clash



    League Cup
    16:30 Manchester City vs Arsenal
    As Arsenal gears up to take on Manchester City in Sunday’s Carabao Cup final, some Gunners fans may secretly be hoping their team will lose.

    On paper, that looks likely, seeing that 27 points separate Arsenal from the runaway leaders of the Premier League, but finals often produce upsets that go against the form book.

    In last season’s FA Cup final, for example, Arsenal overcame the odds to defeat Chelsea, a victory that allowed Arsene Wenger to claim the season hadn’t been so bad after all. It had been, of course, with Arsenal failing to qualify for the Champions League for the first time in 20 years.

    Wenger’s reward for a season of unprecedented failure was a new two-year deal – inexplicable to a growing number of Gooners who despair of ever seeing the Frenchman step aside despite overseeing a decade of steady decline.

    With Arsenal languishing in sixth spot in the league – despite not having to contend with the pressure of the Champions League, a respite that last season enabled Chelsea to win the Premier League title – Wenger has suddenly started taking the Carabao Cup seriously.
    In past seasons it was an unwanted distraction, an opportunity for Wenger to blood some youngsters or to ease back some players from injury. But having been humiliatingly dumped out of the FA Cup in the third round by Nottingham Forest, many believe Wenger doesn’t really care what silverware he wins this season as long as there’s something in the trophy cabinet come the end of May.

    The Europa League is the title that Arsenal are really gunning, as winning it would give them a place in next season’s Champions League, but Wenger could use success in the Carabao Cup as a weapon to ward off his detractors.

    On the other hand, should Arsenal lose on Sunday, and then fail to qualify for the Champions League next season, it would hard to see how the board could keep faith in him.

    Profit has always been paramount to owner Stan Kroenke, and two seasons without Champions League football may finally force the American to do what he’s hitherto considered unthinkable: sack Wenger.

    Pep now the top dog

    Wenger, of course, was once considered the top dog of Premier League managers, an innovator in an English game that had failed to keep up with the rest of Europe. That mantle now belongs to Pep Guardiola, and Sunday’s match is very much yesterday’s man against today’s.

    The Spaniard is still without any silverware in 18 months of managing City, but barring a sensational collapse in form, they will win the Premier League title. The side are also all but guaranteed a place in the quarter-final of the Champions League, having thrashed Basel 4-0 in their last-16 first leg last week.

    A shock defeat to League One Wigan in the FA Cup on Monday was a reminder to Guardiola that even the best-laid plans can go awry, however.

    The result also underlines how much more competitive English football is compared with what he experienced in Spain and Germany. With Barcelona, Guardiola won 11 major trophies, and seven more then followed during his time in charge of Bayern Munich.

    Meanwhile, Arsenal are recovering from the drama of last night’s Europa League tie against Ostersunds. What many thought would be a formality against the Swedish minnows turned out to be anything but, with Ostersunds inflicting a humiliating 2-1 defeat on the Gunners.

    It wasn’t enough to prevent the north Londoners progressing to the next round of the Europa League, courtesy of their 3-0 away win in the first leg. But it was yet more confirmation for the Arsenal fans – who booed their team off at the final whistle – that it’s not new silverware the club needs but rather new management.

    First League Cup triumph for 25 years?

    Arsenal have not won this competition since 1993 when they beat Sheffield Wednesday 2-1 at Wembley under George Graham.

    The Gunners have beaten Doncaster Rovers, Norwich City, West Ham United and Chelsea to reach the final, and victory over City would salvage a season that has not gone to plan.

    They face a battle to finish in the top four of the Premier League while they were knocked out of the FA Cup, a competition they won last season, by Nottingham Forest.

    On Thursday, they advanced to the Europa League’s last 16 on aggregate despite losing at home to Swedish side Ostersunds.

    Wenger has used the League Cup in its various guises in the past to give his younger players experience.

    But with the Gunners so close to a trophy, he will be naming an experienced side at Wembley.

    “Manchester City have so many players that you think you have to stop that it is better to focus on the team plan than rather than on any individual,” said Wenger on Friday.

    “It’s true that I always used to use this competition with a youth team. For us it’s an opportunity. We’ll play with all the regular players.

    “We go to Wembley and you want to win it, you want your fans to go home happy.”

    Match facts: Head-to-head

    • This is the first-ever meeting between these sides in a major final. Arsenal have won both previous meetings with Manchester City at Wembley – 3-0 in the 2014 Community Shield and 2-1 in last season’s FA Cup semi-final.
    • City have lost just one of their past five meetings with Arsenal in all competitions (W2 D2), beating them 3-1 in their previous meeting in the Premier League this season.
    • In the League Cup, City have won their past two ties against Arsenal (2009-10 and 2011-12), having lost their previous five between 1977-78 and 2004-05.


    • This is Arsenal’s eighth League Cup final – they’ve lost more than any other side in the history of the competition (5), winning the tournament twice – in 1987 and 1993.
    • Arsenal have scored just six goals in the competition this season, the lowest tally of any team to reach the final in the competition’s history.
    • Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is aiming to become the eighth different manager to win all three of the English top-flight trophies after Bill Nicholson, Joe Mercer, Don Revie, George Graham, Alex Ferguson, Kenny Dalglish and Jose Mourinho.
    • Wenger has won seven of his 10 domestic cup finals with Arsenal, with his last two defeats coming in this competition (2007 v Chelsea and 2011 v Birmingham).
    • Of the 13 players who played for Arsenal in the 2011 League Cup final defeat to Birmingham, only Laurent Koscielny and Jack Wilshere are still at the club.

    Manchester City

    • Manchester City will be making their sixth appearance in the League Cup final, and third in the last five seasons. They’ve won four of their previous five, failing only in 1974.
    • City boss Pep Guardiola has triumphed in six of his previous seven major domestic and European finals, losing only to Real Madrid with Barcelona in the 2011 Copa del Rey final.
    • Both Leroy Sane (3 goals, 1 assist) and Bernardo Silva (1 goals, 3 assists) have been involved in 50% of City’s eight goals in the competition this season.
    • Sergio Aguero has scored in each of his last four appearances against Arsenal in all competitions (4 goals in total). Only twice before has he netted in five consecutive games for Manchester City against a single opponent (Tottenham with a run ending in May 2015 and Sunderland in a run ending in March 2017).

    Predicted line-ups according to the London Evening Standard.

    Arsenal starting XI: Ospina, Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal, Xhaka, Ramsey, Wilshere, Welbeck, Ozil, Aubameyang

    Manchester City XI: Bravo, Walker, Kompany, Otamendi, Zinchenko, Fernandinho, Silva, De Bruyne, Sterling, Sane, Aguero



    She Cranes Star Nuba Reveals Why She Decided To Play For Uganda Not South Sudan; Why She Regrets Giving Birth Early…



    She Cranes player Mary Nuba

    Born in South Sudan but grew in Uganda, that’s the story of the She Cranes goal shooter Mary Nuba Cholhok who was voted as the best shooter in the just concluded Fast5 Series tournament which was held in New Zealand.

    Uganda emerged in fifth position in the tournament. theGrapevine had a chance to talk to Nuba before she went back to England for her professional career.

    Grapevine: Why did you decide to play for Uganda and not for your native country South Sudan?

    Nuba: South Sudan is still lagging behind in Netball and I’m getting old, that’s why I decided to play for Uganda’s She Cranes.

    Grapevine: What challenges have you faced so far in your career?

    Nuba: Thinking about my five-year baby who stays in Uganda yet I’m in England playing for my professional club.

    Grapevine: Then what about your husband [the baby’s father] ?

    Nuba: I’m not married, though I gave birth.

    Mary Nuba was awarded Fans player of the Fast5 Series tournament

    Grapevine: How did you manage giving birth and playing Netball?

    Nuba: I realized that later that I made a mistake of getting pregnant. But I stood on my feet, forgot all the past and decided to move on with my child and my career.

    Grapevine: How do you manage those good performances?

    Nuba: I work very hard ever day in order to achieve my goals.

    Grapevine: Where do you see She Cranes in four years to come?

    Nuba: I see She Cranes winning the Netball World cup because we have good players who are still young.

    Grapevine: Tell us about the best game in your career?

    Nuba: When we defeated South Africa in the Common Wealth games in Birmingham.

    Grapevine: Who’s your role model in the game of Netball?

    Nuba: Peace Proscovia because of the way she managed to lift her life from a poor background. She is now superstar in the game.



    By Juma Ali


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    MIRACLE: All She Cranes Players Return After Incidents Of Players Disappearing While On Duty Abroad…



    She Cranes players and one of the start player Goal Shooter Mary Cholhok Nuba

    It was a miracle this time around after all the She Cranes players returned from New Zealand.

    It has been a habit for some Netball players to escape when the team travels for international tournaments.

    Just last month, two She Cranes players; Nakanyike Shakira, who was a Police Player and Rose Namutebi, who was a KCCA Player, disappeared in UK, during She Cranes international friendlies.

    The disappearance of these two players followed the disappearance of centre Player, Halimah Nakachwa, who disappeared in UK, in 2017 during another international friendly in UK.

    However, this time around, all the nine players who went for the first five series tournament in New Zealand, where She Cranes emerged fifth, after wining three games and losing three games, all returned with the team.

    National players disappearing while on duty abroad is also a habit in other sports disciplines like; boxing, table tennis, Rugby among others.


    By Juma Ali


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    It’s Time For Golola To Rest: I’m Going To Punch Him Into Retirement – General Fungu Vows…



    Moses Golola (L) and General Fungu (R)

    General Hamza Fungu has vowed to fight Moses Golola and send him into retirement come 26th December. 2022.

    Fungu said this during the launch at Akamwesi gardens today.

    Uganda’s middle weight kick boxing champion, Golola Moses is set to face his former trainer, General Hamza Fungu on bixing day at Akamwesi shopping mail gardens.

    Golola, who is known for his many words said that he has beaten many fighters who were better than Fungu, “now look at this piglet, I’m going to show him why I’m called Golola Moses ‘of Uganda ‘  and I call upon Ugandans to come and be witnesses on that day.”

    Though Golola said that he signed a contract which allows both fighters to fight until one gets tired, officials in charge of organizing the show said they will fight K-1 style for five rounds.

    Grapevine had a chance to sit down with Golola’s challenger General Fungu and and this is what he had to say;

    theGrapevine: How are you prepared for this fight?

    Fungu: I’m well prepared but they have also given us enough time. So, I’m going to prepare more.

    theGrapevine: Why, among fighters did you choose Golola?

    Fungu: I have been asking to fight Golola for the last five years but he has been dodging me. He one time asked for 20,000 dollars to fight me.

    theGrapevine: Why do you think he accepted this time around?

    Fungu: I think this time, he has been given a lot of money.

    theGrapevine: Which tactics are you going to use to defeat Golola?

    Fungu : Golola has words but I have the tactics which will defeat Golola.

    theGrapevine: Many people have come out to challenge Golola but he finally wins?

    Fungu : He has been favoured many times.

    theGrapevine: Is it true that the contract you signed for the fight allows you to fight until one of you gets tired?

    Fungu : The contract is a disadvantage to Golola not me because I was born a fighter.

    theGrapevine: What next after this fight?

    Fungu : After this fight, I will fight three more three bouts and retire.


    By Juma Ali


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