Mbappe Inspires PSG To Victory In Nice

French referee Clement Turpin (C) stands by Nice’s Argentine goalkeeper Walter Benitez (L) and Paris Saint-Germain’s French forward Kylian Mbappe (R)during the French L1 football match between OGC Nice and Paris Saint Germain at The Allianz Riviera Stadium in Nice, south-eastern France on September 20, 2020. Valery HACHE / AFP

 

 

Kylian Mbappe returned to the starting line-up for Paris Saint-German on Sunday and scored the opener in a 3-0 win at Nice which marks another step on the road to recovery for the French champions.

The 21-year-old, who tested positive for coronavirus on September 7, was on target from the penalty spot in the 38th minute.

Angel di Maria added a second just before half-time and Marquinhos headed the third after 66 minutes. Mbappe thought he had scored a fourth late on but it was ruled out for offside. He was replaced by Pablo Sarabia shortly after.

“I’m impressed by his performance after only one training session with the team,” said coach Thomas Tuchel.

“He always shows that he can do extraordinary things and that he knows how to make a difference. It helps us a lot.”

It was a second successive Ligue 1 win for PSG who began the season still smarting from defeat in the Champions League final. They lost their opening two games and the second ended in a mass brawl against Marseille which led to the suspension of Brazilian forward Neymar.

With Marco Verratti also back, PSG rarely looked troubled in the sunshine of the Mediterranean.

When 19-year-old Khephren Thuram-Ulien clipped Mbappe’s ankle as the striker surged into the box, the France forward picked himself up to blast the ball high into the net.

Four minutes later, Nice almost levelled when PSG goalie Keylor Navas had to get down sharply to his left to beat away a shot from Rony Lopes.

Mbappe was back in the thick of it as the game entered stoppage time at the end of the first half.

Losing two defenders, Mbappe fired in a sharp shot which Nice goalie Walter Benitez did well to parry but only as far as the feet of Di Maria, who tapped in for 2-0.

PSG continued to control the game after the break and were rewarded with a third when Marquinhos got in front of the defence to head home.

Saint-Etienne just about held onto top spot in the table despite throwing away a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 at Nantes and end their perfect start to the new season.

Claude Puel’s side are level on 10 points with next weekend’s opponents Rennes after goals from Moses Simon in the 71st minute and Renaud five minutes from time cancelled out Adil Aouchiche and Yvann Macon’s strikes for the away side.

Later Marseille look to bounce back from their first home defeat in 41 years to 10-time league champions Saint-Etienne last week when they host Lille at the Stade Velodrome.

Striker Dario Benedetto is available again after a suspension for his role in the stoppage-time brawl in the win at PSG earlier this month.

AFP

Mane’s Brace Sinks Chelsea At Stamford Bridge

mane-sadio
Mane celebrates one of his goal in the game. Photo: [email protected]

 

Senegalese striker, Sadio Mane bagged a brace to help Liverpool beat Chelsea 0-2 in a Premier League clash at the Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Mane was involved in the turning point at Stamford Bridge as the first clash between Premier League title contenders this season swung Liverpool’s way.

In first half stoppage-time, Jordan Henderson picked out Mane’s run behind Christensen and the Denmark defender responded by rugby-tackling the Senegal star to the ground.

Referee Paul Tierney initially booked Christensen, but VAR told him to consult the pitchside monitor and he changed his decision to a red card.

Mane grabbed his first goal of the season in the 50th minute as he met Roberto Firmino’s cross with a thumping header after eluding Reece James’ slack marking.

Mane was gifted his second goal as Chelsea keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga made a hash of trying to play out from the back, allowing the Liverpool forward to intercept and slot into the empty net.

 

 

It was the latest costly blunder from Kepa, who was dropped twice by Chelsea manager Frank Lampard last season despite his status as the world’s most expensive keeper.

Lampard will be relieved that Chelsea are reportedly close to signing Rennes’ Senegal international Edouard Mendy as he looks to replace Kepa.

Thiago Alcantara made his Liverpool debut at half-time after his move from Bayern Munich, but the Spain midfielder conceded a 74th minute penalty with a foul on Timo Werner.

Alisson Becker came to Thiago’s rescue as he saved Jorginho’s spot-kick.

After their chaotic 4-3 win over Leeds on the opening weekend, this was a return to the kind of dominant display Liverpool produced so often en route to their first English title for 30 years last season.

While Chelsea have spent £200 million ($258 million) on new signings in a bid to close the gap on the champions, Liverpool remain streets ahead of the Blues at present.

– Son shines –

At St Mary’s, Jose Mourinho hailed Son and Harry Kane after the pair destroyed Southampton.

Just 24 hours after Tottenham signed Gareth Bale, Son delivered a virtuoso display that showed Mourinho’s side already have plenty of firepower.

 

Son shone like a million star in the game. Photo:[email protected]

 

Bale has returned to Tottenham on a season-long loan from Real Madrid seven years after he left the north London club for a then world record £85 million fee.

But the Wales forward will not be available until mid-October as he recovers from a knee injury, so Mourinho needs Son and Kane to carry the attack until then.

Danny Ings put Southampton ahead in the first half, but Son equalised before the break and scored three more in the second half, with each of his goals coming from Kane assists.

Kane, who hit the back of the net twice in the first half only to have them ruled out for offside, capped a swaggering display with his second goal of the season.

“Son was on fire and for me Harry Kane was the man of the match, what he did for the team,” Mourinho said.

“With him dropping back and connecting the game between the lines for Sonny to attack, the space they created was a problem they couldn’t resolve.”

After losing to Everton in their Premier League opener last weekend, Tottenham have lifted the gloom with this vibrant second half performance after the Bale coup.

Neal Maupay’s quick-fire double inspired Brighton’s 3-0 win against Newcastle as the Seagulls claimed their first Premier League victory of the season.

Graham Potter’s side raced into a two-goal lead after just seven minutes at St James’ Park thanks to the brace from French striker Maupay.

Aaron Connolly grabbed the third for Brighton, who had Yves Bissouma sent off after his raised boot caught Jamal Lewis in the face.

AFP

Son Shines As Five Star Tottenham Devour Southampton

son and harry kane
Son and English striker, Harry Kane celebrating a goal during the match. Photo: [email protected]

 

South Korean star Heung-min Son was the star of the show, scoring four goals as Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham bashed Southampton 2-5 in a Premier League encounter Sunday.

Just 24 hours after Tottenham signed Gareth Bale, South Korea forward Son delivered a virtuoso display that showed Jose Mourinho’s side already have plenty of firepower.

Bale has returned to Tottenham on a season-long loan from Real Madrid seven years after he left the north London club for a then world record £85 million ($109 million) fee.

But the Wales forward will not be available until mid-October as he recovers from a knee injury, so Mourinho needs Son and Harry Kane to carry the attack until then.

No one would question the quality of that pair and they underlined the point with superb performances that ripped Southampton to pieces.

Danny Ings put Southampton ahead in the first half, but Son equalised before the break and scored three more in the second half.

Kane, who hit the back of the net twice in the first half only to have them ruled out for offside, capped a swaggering display with his second goal of the season.

After losing to Everton in their Premier League opener last weekend, Tottenham have lifted the gloom with this vibrant second half performance after the Bale coup.

Dele Alli was left out of Tottenham’s squad and Mourinho raised fresh questions about the midfielder’s future when he said: “We have too many players for some positions and some of them are paying the price for this.”

But Alli wasn’t missed thanks to Son and Kane’s heroics.

Tottenham were playing the second of five games in 10 days, an unrelenting schedule that Mourinho had derided as “crazy” and initially they looked fatigued.

Hugo Lloris made a superb save to keep Tottenham level when he tipped over Che Adams’ ferocious strike.

– Devastating Spurs –

Tottenham escaped again when Lloris rashly raced off his line and headed the ball straight at Ings, who curled into the empty net only to see the goal ruled out for handball by the Saints striker.

Southampton winger Moussa Djenepo hit the outside of a post with a curling effort from the edge of the area.

Ings has been linked with a move to Tottenham after a prolific campaign last term and the qualities that attracted Mourinho were on show as he put Southampton ahead in the 32nd minute.

Running onto Kyle Walker-Peters’ long pass, Ings displayed his astute movement as he got in behind Eric Dier, then demonstrated his predatory instincts by guiding his shot across Lloris into the far corner.

With Tottenham looking increasingly bedraggled, it was a surprise when they equalised against the run of play in first half stoppage-time.

Tanguy Ndombele picked out Kane on the left and the striker’s cross reached Son, who ignored the acute angle to clip a sublime finish past Alex McCarthy.

Son’s goal was a huge boost to Tottenham’s morale and they took the lead with a well-crafted goal two minutes after half-time.

Once again it was Kane and Son who prised open the Southampton defence as the England captain fed the South Korean with a delicate pass.

Son surged through on goal and calmly guided a precise strike past McCarthy with his left foot.

Tottenham’s star forwards weren’t finished yet and they left Southampton for dead in the 64th minute.

Dropping deep to devastating effect, Kane was the provider with a superb lofted pass over the Saints defence and Son finished in emphatic fashion.

Southampton had no answers to Kane and Son and another deft pass from the Tottenham striker in the 73rd minute picked out the South Korean, who was never going to miss from close-range.

Kane and Son have now combined for more Premier League goals (24) than any other duo in the competition since August 2015.

Kane got the goal he deserved with a close-range finish in the 82nd minute before Ings netted again with a 90th minute penalty awarded for handball by Matt Doherty.

AFP

‘The End Of Godfatherism’: PDP Chieftains Hail Obaseki’s Re-Election As Edo Governor

File photo of Godwin Obaseki. Photo: [email protected] Akwa Ibom.

 

Congratulatory messages have been pouring from chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) after Godwin Obaseki was re-elected as the Governor of Edo State. 

Governor Obaseki, returned elected on Sunday after polling the highest votes in the keenly-contested poll conducted on Saturday, defeated his main rival and candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

And for a former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Obaseki’s win is an “end to godfatherism” and a “new dawn” in Edo State.

“There is a new dawn in Edo State, and the hard-won victory of Governor Obaseki is not just a victory, but a Declaration of Independence from the anti-democratic forces of godfatherism and militarism,” Atiku who contested the presidential seat under the PDP in 2019 tweeted Sunday.

“No victory could be sweeter than this, and I heartily congratulate the Governor and the good people of Edo state for their resilience in the face of the forces arrayed against them.”

Although they were fears in many quarters that the election might turn violent, Atiku said the poll was largely peaceful, describing Obaseki’s re-election as “new record” in Nigeria’s democracy.

“I also seize this opportunity to thank His Royal Highness, the Oba of Benin, Omo N’oba N’Edo Uku Akpolopkolo, Ewuare II, for the fatherly role he played as a neutral catalyst for peace,” Atiku added.

He equally lauded members of the PDP for supporting Obaseki who had defected from the APC after he was disqualified from the party’s primary, urging him to deliver good governance to the people of Edo State.

“In good times, we will walk beside you. In bad times, we will be your loyal ‘comrade’,” he assured while calling on him to extend a hand of friendship to Ize-Iyamu. “We will never be a turncoat.”

 ‘Historic Victory’

The Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, equally sent his congratulatory message to the re-elected Edo leader and believes that another term for Obaseki is an indication that the people’s choice will always prevail.

“With their loud and irrefutable votes in #EdoDecides, the people of Edo State have sent a strong message that they choose to continue under Governor Godwin Obaseki’s development agenda to Make Edo Great Again!”Okowa tweeted, Sunday.

‘Power Belongs To The People’

“I congratulate my colleague and brother, Governor Obaseki on his victory at the just-concluded Edo State gubernatorial elections,”  the Governor of Bauchi State, Senator Bala Mohammed, also said in his message to the Edo Governor.

“Your win is a victory for Edo State and our great party, PDP.  It also validates that truly, power belongs to the people.”

‘The Beauty Of Democracy’ 

While hailing Obaseki for his victory, the former Senate President Ike Ekweremadu, said the development captures the “beauty of democracy.”

“And if there is a moral lesson to be learnt, it is also that no man can successfully play God, for God will always put men in their place,” the PDP Chieftain said on Sunday, expressing hopes that “we can get our elections right.”

Ekweremadu called on Obaseki to see his popular mandate as both an approval of his stewardship in the last four years and a call to lead Edo land on the path of greater peace, prosperity, and all-round development.

A Deserved Victory

The Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, Ndudi Elumelu was not left out in the streams of messages pouring in since Obaseki’s election.

Elumelu, who described Obaseki’s re-election as well-deserving, attributed the governor’s success to his sterling performance in developing the state and empowering the people during his first tenure.

A Job Well-Done

Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State equally commended the Edo Governor for a “well deserved victory,” and hailed the PDP for the win.

Obaseki Wins Ize-Iyamu’s Local Government Area

 

The candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Edo Governorship election, Godwin Obaseki has won Orhionmwon Local Government where his main challenger and flag bearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Osagie Ize-Iyamu hails from.

While announcing the result at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Collation Centre in Benin City, Sunday, the Collation Officer for Orhionmwon, Dr Olusegun Samuel said the APC got 10,458 votes while the PDP had 13,445.

Dr Olusegun explained that the election took place in eleven wards in the local government which had 118671 registered voters with 24868 accredited to vote in the poll.

‘We Could Not Find Him’

The announcement of the result, however, but to rest, fears from the PDP that figures from the local government may be manipulated.

An agent of the PDP, Omeregie Ogbeide-Ihama raised an alarm over the whereabouts of Dr Olusegun and the Electoral Officer for Orhionmwon.

“Within the break, we could not find him. They are not here,” he said.

He disclosed that the duo were with them at the Collation Centre but failed to return to the venue after a one hour break announced by the Returning Officer.

READ ALSO: Edo Election: INEC Official Shot, Another Injured In Etsako Central

According to him, he was later informed that the Collation Officer and the Electoral Officer were somewhere around the Centre but had not turned up at the result collation hall.

In the election which some observers have described as “largely peaceful,” INEC had earlier in the day said one of its official had been shot and another critically wounded.

The incident occurred on Saturday while the electorate were voting in the governorship election.

This was confirmed by Professor Godswill Alan Lukman, the Collation Officer in Etsako Central Local Government Area where the incident took place.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PDP Raises Alarm Over Whereabouts Of Orhionmwon LG Collation Officer

omeregie-Ogbeide-ihama
Omeregie Ogbeide-Ihama raising the alarm over the whereabouts of the officials.

 

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has raised an alarm over the whereabouts of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Collation Officer for Orhionmwon Local Government Area. 

Omoregie Ogbeide-Ihama, a PDP agent, raised the alarm on Sunday at the Collation Centre for the Edo Governorship election in Benin City.

“Within the break, we could not find him. They are not here,”he said.

READ ALSO: Obaseki Takes Lead In Edo Governorship Election

Ogbeide-Ihama explained that the Collation Officer for the Local Government and the Electoral Officer were with them at the Collation Centre but failed to return to the venue after a one hour break announced by the Returning Officer.

Expressing fears over the whereabouts of the duo, the PDP agent said his party has a copy of the result for the local government in question.

According to him, he was later informed that the Collation Officer and the Electoral Officer were somewhere around the Centre but have not turned up at the Collation office at the time of this report.

‘Largely Free, Fair’

Despite fears of violence, observers say the Edo poll has been “largely free and fair” with INEC expected to declare the winner Sunday.

“The two major political parties, APC and PDP were involved and trying to outdo each other in voter inducement with suspected party leaders glaringly seen sharing money to a group of voters mostly women in many polling units,” the  Transition Monitoring Group (TMG) and Edo Civil Society Organizations (EDOCSO) noted on Sunday.

The group stated that despite few lapses observed, the election was relatively well executed and largely free and fair.

They also cited impressive voters’ turnout, fair and adequate security, adequate election materials as some of the incidents that contributed to the success of the election.

 

 

Edo Election: INEC Official Shot, Another Injured In Etsako Central

 

An official of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has been shot and critically injured. 

The incident occurred on Saturday while the electorate were voting in the governorship election in the state and was confirmed by Professor Godswill Alan Lukman, the Collation Officer in Etsako Central Local Government Area where the incident took place.

Professor Godswill made the disclosure on Sunday at the collation centre in Benin City, while giving a situation report on the election conducted in the LGA.

He, however, stated that the victim was not dead but in critical condition at a hospital in the state.

The collation officer, who noted that the incident occurred due to violence at the venue of the election, added that another ad-hoc official was cut in the face.

He explained that some hoodlums suspected to be political thugs stormed the venue and disrupted the exercise, forcing the electorate who have come to vote to run to safety.

As a result, the election could not be concluded at the polling area.

Giving a general update on the election in Etsako Central, Professor Godswill said the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) polled 7,478 votes while the All Progressives Congress (APC) scored 8,359.

Tottenham Tie Up Deal For Reguilon

Spanish defender Sergio Reguilon. Photo: [email protected] Hotspur

 

 

Tottenham announced the signing of left-back Sergio Reguilon from Real Madrid on Thursday as talks continued between the two clubs over Gareth Bale’s return to the Premier League.

Reguilon heads to London for a reported fee of 30 million euros ($35 million, £27 million) plus five million more in add-ons after starring while on loan for Europa League winners Sevilla last season.

Madrid, though, will reportedly retain a buy-back option on the 23-year-old for the next two seasons for 40 million euros.

“We are delighted to announce the signing of Sergio Reguilon from Real Madrid,” Tottenham said in a statement.

“The 23-year-old left-back has signed a contract with the club until 2025 and will wear the number three shirt.”

Manchester United were also interested in Reguilon, who played in Sevilla’s 2-1 Europa League semi-final win over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men last month, but were less open to Real’s requirement for a buy-back clause.

After an impressive start to his Madrid career under former coaches Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari, Zinedine Zidane’s return to the Santiago Bernabeu saw Reguilon slip down the pecking order as veteran vice-captain Marcelo regained his place before the Spanish giants splashed 48 million euros on Ferland Mendy last year.

However, Reguilon, who made his debut for Spain earlier this month, is still highly regarded in Madrid, which is why they sought a deal to be able to bring him back to the club once Marcelo, 32, departs.

Mourinho’s men are badly in need of a lift in the closing weeks of the transfer window after losing their opening game of the Premier League season 1-0 at home to Everton.

AFP

Zaha’s Brace Nails Manchester United To Opening Game Defeat

Zaha celebrating scoring a goal against Manchester United in a Premier League game on 19/9/2020. Photo: [email protected] Crystal Palace

 

Ivory Coast forward, Wilfred Zaha bagged a brace to help Crystal Palace nail Manchester United to a 1-3 defeat in their opening game of the 2020/2021 season. 

On the second weekend of the new campaign, United were playing for the first time after being given an extra week of rest due to their involvement in the latter stages of last season’s Europa League.

But Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s lethargic side were well below their best and Palace took full advantage thanks to Andros Townsend’s seventh-minute strike and Zaha’s 74th-minute penalty against his former club.

There was a hint of controversy about Zaha’s goal as VAR ruled Victor Lindelof had handled Jordan Ayew’s shot even though the ball was hit with force at him from close quarters.

David De Gea saved Ayew’s spot-kick, but VAR intervened again to order a retake as United’s keeper had strayed off his line and this time Zaha converted from the spot.

 


Crystal Palace’s Ivorian striker Wilfried Zaha shoots to score their second goal from the penalty spot during the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Crystal Palace at Old Trafford in Manchester, north west England, on September 19, 2020. / AFP / POOL / Martin Rickett.

 

United’s only major close-season signing Donny van de Beek came off the bench and the former Ajax midfielder reduced the deficit with a debut goal in the 80th minute.

But Zaha, who endured a difficult spell at United before rejoining Palace, showed why the Eagles are so keen to keep him amid speculation over his future as the Ivory Coast winger lashed home in the 85th minute.

For the first time in six years, United were beaten in their opening league game.

It was a chastening start to the season for United, who have come under fire from fans frustrated at their relatively modest transfer outlay compared to their title rivals.

AFP

 

Gareth Bale Rejoins Tottenham After Seven Years With Real Madrid

Bale rejoins Spurs after seven years with Real Madrid. Photo: [email protected]

 

Gareth Bale completed his return to Tottenham Hotspur on a season-long loan deal from Real Madrid, Spurs announced on Saturday.

Bale, 31, won four Champions League and two La Liga titles with Madrid after moving for a then world-record fee of £85 million (today $110 million, 93 million euros) in 2013.

However, the Wales attacker will not be fit to make his second debut for the club until late October due to an injury.

“We are delighted to announce the return of Gareth Bale to the club on a season-long loan from Real Madrid,” Tottenham said in a statement.

“Gareth sustained a knee injury whilst playing for Wales on international duty earlier this month and this together with La Liga’s later start compared to the Premier League means he has had a limited pre-season.

“We currently anticipate that he will be match fit after October’s international break.”

Tottenham’s first game after the international break next month is away to Burnley on October 24.

Bale, 31, won four Champions League and two La Liga titles with Madrid after moving for a then world-record fee of £85 million (today $110 million, 93 million euros) in 2013.

However, he had fallen out of favour at the Spanish champions in the past two seasons since Zinedine Zidane’s return as coach.

The former Southampton winger made just two appearances for Madrid after football’s return from the break caused by the coronavirus pandemic and did not even travel for Madrid’s Champions League exit to Manchester City in June.

“Our club wishes good luck to a player who has been part of one of the most successful stages of our history,” Madrid said in a statement.

By contrast, at Tottenham, he is still remembered as one of the club’s all-time greats.

Bale twice won Premier League Players’ Player of the Year during his first spell at the side, which saw him score 56 goals in 203 appearances and lure Madrid into paying a record-breaking price for his services.

Tottenham will reportedly pay half of Bale’s huge 30 million euro salary for the season, with Madrid still on the hook for the rest.

He will wear the number nine shirt and form an exciting front-three with England captain Harry Kane and South Korea’s Son Heung-min.

“To all the Spurs fans, after 7 years, I’m back!” Bale tweeted.

Spurs are badly in need of a lift after failing to qualify for the Champions League for the first time in five years last season and starting their new Premier League campaign with a dispiriting 1-0 home defeat to Everton.

Spain Sergio Reguilon has also made a permanent move from Madrid to Tottenham for a reported 30 million euros.

Reguilon heads to London after starring while on loan for Europa League winners Sevilla last season.

Madrid, though, will reportedly retain a buy-back option on the 23-year-old for the next two seasons.

Manchester United were also interested in Reguilon, who played in Sevilla’s 2-1 Europa League semi-final win over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men last month, but were less open to Madrid’s requirement for a buy-back clause.

After an impressive start to his Madrid career under former coaches Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari, Zidane’s return to the Santiago Bernabeu saw Reguilon slip down the pecking order as veteran vice-captain Marcelo regained his place before the Spanish giants splashed 48 million euros on Ferland Mendy last year.

However, Reguilon, who made his debut for Spain earlier this month, is still highly regarded in Madrid, which is why they sought a deal to be able to bring him back to the club once Marcelo, 32, departs.

AFP

Premier League New Boys Leeds Edge Fulham In Seven-Goal Thriller

Leeds vs fulham
Leeds United and Fulham gained promotion to the Premier League this season. Photo: Twitter Leeds.

 

Fulham recorded their second consecutive defeat since the start of the new Premier League season as they were edged 4-3 by fellow newcomers, Leeds United on Saturday. 

After losing 4-3 at champions Liverpool on the opening weekend, Helda Costa fired Marcelo Bielsa’s free-scoring side ahead in the fifth minute.Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic equalised from the penalty spot in the 35th minute after a foul on Joe Bryan.Bryan was penalised himself for his shove on Patrick Bamford and Mateusz Klich restored Leeds’ advantage with a 40th-minute spot-kick.

Leeds United’s Portuguese midfielder Helder Costa (R) celebrates with teammates after scoring their fourth goal during the English Premier League football match between Leeds United and Fulham at Elland Road in Leeds, northern England on September 19, 2020. / AFP / POOL / Oli SCARFF

 

In the 51st minute, Patrick Bamford steered a right-footed finish into the bottom corner.

Leeds struck again six minutes later with a superb strike from Costa.

Fulham pulled one back in the 62nd minute through Bobby Decordova-Reid and Mitrovic’s towering header four minutes later set up a tense finale, but the promoted Cottagers fell to a second successive defeat.

Leeds’ opening games have seen 14 goals, which is the most for a top-flight side’s first two matches since Wolves in 1962-63.

Seven-Goal Thriller 

At Goodison Park, Dominic Calvert-Lewin hit a hat-trick in Everton’s 5-2 win over 10-man West Bromwich Albion.

Everton’s English striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin scores their fifth goal during the English Premier League football match between Everton and West Bromwich Albion at Goodison Park in Liverpool, north west England on September 19, 2020. / AFP / POOL / Michael Regan.

 

Carlo Ancelotti’s side fell behind to Grady Diangana’s early goal.

But Calvert-Lewin equalised and James Rodriguez put Everton ahead with his first Premier League goal before Albion imploded.

Kieran Gibbs was dismissed for pushing James in the face in first-half stoppage-time, a rash reaction that prompted him to issue a post-match apology taking “full responsibility” for his mistake.

Then Albion boss Slaven Bilic was sent to the stands after storming onto the pitch for a furious rant at referee Mike Dean.

Matheus Pereira equalised for Albion after the interval, but Michael Keane restored Everton’s lead and Calvert-Lewin sealed the points with his second and third goals.

After a summer spending spree, Ancelotti is under pressure to deliver a big improvement on last season’s 12th place finish and the early signs are promising.

Having beaten Tottenham in their opening game last weekend, Everton have started a Premier League season with consecutive victories for the first time since 2012-13.

“Of course today Dominic was the top scorer but also Richarlison did really well, the combination in front was good,” Ancelotti said.

“They are supported by James, who is doing really well. I’m satisfied in front, we have to do better at the back.”

AFP

Arrested ‘Hotel Rwanda’ Hero Duped Into Flying To Kigali

“Hotel Rwanda” hero Paul Rusesabagina (C) is escorted by police officers to leave after his pre-trial court session at the Kicukiro Primary court in Kigali, Rwanda, on September 14, 2020. / AFP / STRINGER

 

 

Paul Rusesabagina, the polarising hero of the “Hotel Rwanda” film who was arrested last month in Kigali, was duped into boarding a jet he thought was flying to Burundi, a New York Times report said.

“How I got here — now that is a surprise,” he told the US daily in a jailhouse interview with two Rwandan officials in the room. “I was actually not coming here.”

Rusesabagina, a Hutu, became famous after the Hollywood film in which he is credited with saving the lives of more than 1,200 people as they sheltered in the hotel he ran during the country’s 1994 genocide.

Some 800,000 mostly Tutsi but also moderate Hutu were killed in the genocide.

The 66-year-old has lived in exile since 1996 and holds both Belgian citizenship and a US “green card”.

 

“Hotel Rwanda” hero Paul Rusesabagina (C), wearing a mask, appears at the Kicukiro Primary court in Kigali, Rwanda, on September 14, 2020. / AFP / STRINGER

 

Over the years, he has become a staunch critic of leader Paul Kagame’s Tutsi-dominated government, accusing his ruling party of authoritarianism and anti-Hutu sentiment.

According to the NYT’s Friday report, Rusesabagina flew from the US to Dubai on August 26, before boarding a private jet he thought was heading to Bujumbura in Burundi which neighbours Rwanda.

The plane was operated by GainJet, a charter company based in Greece that is often used by Kagame, the report said.

But it landed in Kigali where Rusesabagina was arrested. The NYT quoted Rwanda’s spy chief as saying “he delivered himself here.”

He has since been charged with terrorism, financing and founding militant groups, murder, arson and conspiracy to involve children in armed groups.

Rusesabagina says he was heading to Burundi at the invitation of a pastor, to speak in his churches.

 

“Hotel Rwanda” hero Paul Rusesabagina (C), wearing a mask, appears at the Kicukiro Primary court in Kigali, Rwanda, on September 14, 2020. AFP / STRINGER

 

But the NYT was not able to speak to the pastor and says Rwandan officials believe he was actually heading there to coordinate with armed groups based in Burundi and Congo.

In 2018, Rusesabagina co-founded an opposition group, the Rwandan Movement for Democratic Change (MRCD), which is said to have an armed wing called the National Liberation Front (FLN).

In multiple speeches, Rusesabagina has expressed support for the FLN — which has carried out armed attacks and is described as a terrorist organisation by Rwanda — but the extent of his involvement in its actions is unclear.

He has denied forming the FLN.

AFP