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    MATCHDAY PREVIEWS: Can Man City Beat Arsenal, Kloop Campares Liverpool To Rocky Balboa + Previews, Statistics And Betting Tips



    The big football season is back and like we did last season, our Grapevine sports team will be giving you match previews, tables, statistics for the big five league (English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, Serie A, Bundesliga and Ligue 1). Our team of experienced tipsters will be tipping you on how to bet on these five leagues and other big leagues in the world…. This weekend, we will start with the Sunday games.


    3:30 Southampton vs Burnley (Betting tip 1/OVER)
    3:30 Liverpool vs West Ham (Betting tip 1/GG)
    6:00 Arsenal vs Manchester City (Betting tip 2/GG)

    Liverpool have mostly impressed this preseason, putting four goals past Manchester United and five against Napoli, whilst West Ham have slugged it out against Championship outfits Ipswich and Aston Villa.
    If you look at the head-to-head between the two, last season’s fixtures both ended up 4-1 in the Reds’ favour. If you go to the season before that there was another 4-0 win for Liverpool and a 2-2 draw. That’s 18 goals in the last four games. It should be mostly the home side to push goals over the 3.5 market, but we all know Liverpool are prone to conceding one too!
    Liverpool will definitely be without Dejan Lovren, while new signing Fabinho is a doubt because of illness. Brazilian goalkeeper Alisson will make his Premier League debut, as should midfielder Naby Keita.
    West Ham could give debuts to several summer recruits, including midfielders Jack Wilshere, Felipe Anderson and Carlos Sanchez. Ukraine winger Andriy Yarmolenko is struggling to be fit because of ongoing hip and thigh issues.

    Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp: “We have to be in a championship mode. We jump into the water and we dive until we don’t have oxygen anymore. That’s the plan. A lot of people think because of the transfer window we will [challenge more] – but that’s not how it is.
    “City – the champions – have not lost a player and brought in Mahrez. They were impressive against Chelsea, both sides were. We are still Rocky Balboa and not Ivan Drago. We need to want more and fight more. That must be our attitude.”

    West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini: “I will try to play attacking football and score a lot of goals because, throughout my career, I have always been a manager who plays offensive football and tries to attack. But to attack, you must defend very well also, so we must be a balanced team.
    “Last season, they had one of the worst defences in the Premier League, so this year we will try and be balanced while always thinking that we want to score one goal more than the opposition.”

    MATCH FACTS (Head-to-head)

    • Liverpool have won the last three league meetings, scoring four goals on each occasion.
    • West Ham have only recorded one win at Anfield in their last 45 top-flight visits (D12, L32), a 3-0 victory in August 2015.
    • Liverpool
    • Liverpool were unbeaten at Anfield last season in the league (W12, D7), scoring 45 goals and conceding just 10.
    • Their last two season openers have produced 13 goals – a 4-3 win over Arsenal two years ago and a 3-3 draw with Watford last August.
    • Sadio Mane has scored once and provided three assists in his last three Premier League games for Liverpool against West Ham.
    • Mane can become the first Liverpool player to score in three consecutive opening top-flight matches since John Barnes between 1989 and 1991.
    • Mohamed Salah has three goals and one assist in two league appearances against West Ham.

    West Ham United

    • West Ham only won three away games last season (D6, L10).
    • The Hammers have lost their season-opening Premier League game on 11 occasions, more than any other side.
    • Marko Arnautovic has scored 11 goals and provided five assists in his last 20 Premier League appearances.
    • Manuel Pellegrini has suffered four Premier League defeats to Liverpool, more than against any other opponent.
    • Pellegrini has also lost all three of his league fixtures at Anfield – twice against Brendan Rodgers and once versus Jurgen Klopp.

    The season has come around far too quickly for my liking, but at least we have a mouthwatering clash to look forward to on Sunday as the Unai Emery reign begins with a visit of the champions.
    The new Gunners boss has done some smart business this summer and I expect them to have a good campaign, but he would rather have not faced Pep Guardiola’s men first up and I’m backing City to come away with maximum points.
    Opta tell us that Arsenal are without a victory in their last five league meetings with City (D2 L3), and have won just two of their last 12 against them, while the champions have won 17 of their last 20 away Premier League games, including the last six in a row.


    Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey is back in training after suffering a calf problem, but left-back Nacho Monreal is doubtful with a knee issue. Head coach Unai Emery could hand debuts to Bernd Leno, Lucas Torreira and Sokratis Papastathopoulos.

    Defenders Sead Kolasinac and Laurent Koscielny are long-term absentees with respective knee and Achilles injuries. Manchester City’s club record signing Riyad Mahrez is set to make his first Premier League appearance for the club. Left-back Benjamin Mendy could start his first league game since September 2017, when he suffered a cruciate ligament injury against Crystal Palace.

    • MATCH FACTS (Head-to-head)
    • Arsenal have just two wins in the last 12 meetings with Manchester City (D5, L5).
    • Manchester City could win consecutive top-flight away games against Arsenal for the first time since 1936.
    • This is the first time that Arsenal will face the reigning champions on the opening day since 1970, when they drew 2-2 with Everton.
    • The last time these sides met on the opening day was in 1994, when George Graham’s Arsenal side won 3-0 at Highbury.
    • Arsenal
    • The Gunners’ only defeat in their last 11 home Premier League games was a 3-0 loss to Manchester City (W8, D2).
    • The last time Arsenal played a competitive match without Arsene Wenger in charge was in September 1996, when Pat Rice was caretaker for a 2-0 Premier League win over Sunderland.
    • Four of the last five Arsenal managers have won their first league game in charge – only Bruce Rioch failed to do so, drawing with Middlesbrough in August 1995.
    • Unai Emery could become the first Arsenal boss to lose his opening league fixture since Steve Burtenshaw’s team lost 1-0 to Spurs in March 1986.
    • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has 10 goals and four assists in 13 Premier League appearances.
    • Manchester City
    • Manchester City are seeking to become the first club to retain the Premier League title since Manchester United won three in a row from 2007 to 2009.
    • The reigning champions have ended the following season outside the top four in each of the last three years.
    • City are unbeaten in nine opening league matches, winning the last seven in a row.
    • They have only lost once in 20 away league games (W17, D2).
    • Pep Guardiola is unbeaten in 10 previous meetings with Unai Emery (W6, D4).

    SUNDAY: Supercopa de Espana
    21:00 Barcelona vs Sevilla (Betting tip 1/GG)

    The Spanish football season officially kicks off with the Supercopa de España between Sevilla and Barcelona this Sunday.
    Ernesto Valverde’s side may have stumbled in the Champions League last season but it was a very different story back home, winning a league and cup double at a canter.
    With the honour of taking on the double winners falling to the Copa del Rey runners up rather than La Liga runners up, Sevilla are preparing for another meeting with the Catalan giants, – having been taken apart 5-0 in last season’s cup final at the Wanda Metropolitano.
    It’s all change for this season’s format, starting with the venue. This weekend’s Supercopa will be held outside Spain for the first time in the competition’s history, kicking off at the Stade Ibn Batouta in Tangier, Morocco.

    Team news
    Every member of the Barcelona squad has been involved in training this week including new signing Arturo Vidal, who arrived at the Nou Camp this week from Bayern Munich. A debut this Sunday seems unlikely however.
    There could be debuts however for Brazilian duo Arthur and Malcom, summer arrivals from Gremio and AS Roma respectively, with Clément Lenglet hoping for his first Barcelona start against his former employers.
    Rafinha Alcantara, back at the club after spending the second half of last season on loan at Inter Milan, will be hoping for an opportunity to stake a claim for a regular role in midfield, with competition for places intensifying by the day.
    Aleix Vidal could make his Sevilla against his former club, following his return to Andalucia this summer.

    SUNDAY: German Super Cup
    19:30 Eintracht Frankfurt vs Bayern Munich (Betting tip 2/OVER)

    Just a few months after Eintracht Frankfurt’s shock German Cup win, they face Bayern Munich in a showpiece again. Niko Kovac has swapped sides and there’s plenty of new faces, but what will decide Sunday’s contest?

    Kovac in a different dugout
    Plenty unconvinced by Bayern’s April announcement that they’d pinpointed a relatively inexperienced coach, from the lower reaches of the Bundesliga, to follow in the footsteps of Jupp Haynckes, Carlo Ancelotti and Pep Guardiola.
    But Frankfurt’s oustanding display in beating the Bavarians in last season’s cup final owed plenty to their Croatian coach. Kovac’s use of Ante Rebic and Kevin Prince Boateng caused Mats Hummels and Niklas Süle all sorts of problems. The Eagles were solid in defense, organized and always ready to pounce on the break, as the second and third goals in the 3-1 win showed.
    His task at Bayern is very different, particularly in the Bundesliga where the champions are obliged to play mostly on the front foot. While a win would be little more than a solid start, anything other than that would turn up the heat on the new man. Such is the nature of German club football’s top job.

    New spine for Frankfurt
    Kovac isn’t the only major departure that the cup holders have to cope with. As is often the case, Frankfurt’s over-achieveing side has been picked off. Four of the eleven who started that match have left the club, including goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky, winger Marius Wolf and midfielder Omar Mascarell. All of them moved to sides that finished higher in the Bundesliga last term. Boateng will continue his nomadic career at Sassulo in Italy.
    With Rebic almost certain to miss Sunday’s clash after his World Cup exploits with Croatia and new keeper Frederik Ronnow injured, new boss Adi Hütter has to build a new foundation quickly. Lucas Torro, signed from Real Madrid, looks to be Mascarell’s replacement while Portuguese forward Goncalo Paciencis will need to hit the ground running.

    Goretzka with point to prove
    Player turnover is much less of an issue for Bayern, all of their matchday 16 are still with the league champions. In a slow summer of transfer activity, the arrival of Leon Goretzka and subsequent departure of Arturo Vidal looks to be the main change to the Bavarians’ first team.
    The former Schalke man started last season in scintillating form, with his late runs in to the box bringing four goals in his first eight starts. But a niggling injury sustained around the turn of the year provoked a drop in form, just at the time Bayern were confirming his future move.
    Though far from identical in style, Goretzka, 23, is closer to Vidal than any of Bayern’s other central options, with the possible exception of Renato Sanches. His box-to-box style and vision could well be critical to his new club this year. But with competition for places so stiff, he’ll want to get off to a strong start and lift a first trophy at club level.

    Boateng’s future unclear
    Jerome Boateng’s role at Bayern is somewhat less clear. The 29-year-old has been a key member of Bayern’s side for seven years but now appears to be seeking a new challenge. After he reportedly turned down Manchester United, Thomas Tuchel’s Paris Saint-Germain appear to be favorites.
    But Bayern are not especially well stocked at center back, with Süle and Hummels the only other naturals in that position. If Boateng does leave, Bayern will surely sign a replacement, with Benjamin Pavard very much on their radar. But if that doesn’t happen, or until it does, Boateng must still very much be in Kovac’s thoughts. The Croatian coach must keep his player’s mind on the job.

    Hütter with tough act to follow
    As numerous coaches have found out before him, following in the footsteps of an over-achiever can be a poisoned chalice. But for Adi Hütter it was a risk worth taking in order to take the step up from the Swiss league.
    “He’s doing a superb job so far under tricky circumstances,” Frankfurt’s sporting director Bruno Hübner told the club’s website recently. “What really impresses me is how he connects with his players. He does everything with so much enthusiasm, and it’s fun to watch. The players are also willing to adapt to his new philosophy.”
    Hütter will hope those words ring true. Another giant slaying would do his long term prospects no harm whatsoever.

    Ligue 1
    14:00 Lyon vs Amiens (Betting tip 1/GG)
    16:00 Bordeaux vs Strasbourg (Betting tip 1/OVER)
    20:00 Paris Saint Germain vs Caen (Betting tip 1/OVER)

    Russia Premier League
    15:30 FC Ufa vs FC Krasnodar (Betting tip 1)
    18:00 Rubin Kazan vs Zenit St. Petersburg (Betting tip 1/GG)
    12:00 FC Orenburg vs Lokomotiv Moscow (Betting tip 2/OVER)
    14:30 Arsenal Tula vs FK Akhmat (Betting tip X/GG)

    Dutch Eredivisie
    11:15 ADO Den Haag vs FC Emmen (Betting tip 1)
    13:30 Vitesse vs FC Groningen (Betting tip X)
    13:30 De Graafschap vs Feyenoord (Betting tip 2)
    15:45 AZ Alkmaar vs NAC Breda (Betting tip X/OVER)

    Turkey Super Lig
    17:30 Istanbul Basaksehir vs Trabzonspor (Betting tip 2/GG)
    17:30 Konyaspor vs Erzurum BB (Betting tip 1/GG)
    19:45 Goztepe vs Yeni Malatyaspor (Betting tip 1/GG)
    19:45 Besiktas vs Akhisarspor (Betting tip 1/OVER)
    19:45 Kayserispor vs Antalyaspor (Betting tip 2/GG)

    Portugal Liga NOS
    16:30 Vitoria de Setubal vs Aves (Betting tip 1)
    19:00 Tondela vs Belenenses (Betting tip X)
    21:00 FC Porto vs Chaves (Betting tip 1/OVER)


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    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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