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Mahrez, Fellaini and Sissoko Spain bound?

24th Nov 2017
Mahrez, Fellaini and Sissoko Spain bound?

Manchester United’s Marouane Fellaini, Tottenham’s Moussa Sissoko and Leicester forward Riyad Mahrez could all be heading to Spain in January  (Photo: Commons)

Athletics

Mo Farah is one of three male finalists for the IAAF 2017 World Athlete of the Year award. Four-time Olympic champion Farah retired from track racing to concentrate on marathons after winning 10,000m gold and 5,000m silver at the World Championships in August

The 34-year-old will compete with Wayde van Niekerk and Qatar’s Mutaz Essa Barshim.

South African Van Niekerk retained his world 400m world title in London, where Barshim won the high jump. Greece’s Ekaterini Stefanidi, Belgium’s Nafissatou Thiam and Ethiopia’s Almaz Ayana are up for the female award.

Stefanidi won the pole vault title at London 2017, adding to her Olympic crown, while Thiam added the world heptathlon title to her gold from Rio 2016 and Olympic 10,000m champion Ayana also added the world title to her collection. The winners will be announced in Monaco on November 24.

 

Cricket

Pakistan offspinner Saeed Ajmal announced his retirement at the end of the ongoing National Twenty20 tournament. Ajmal has failed to make a successful return to international cricket, featuring in only two matches since taking corrective measures. With Yasir Shah finding a regular place in the national team and several other younger bowlers in limited-overs, Ajmal’s future at the highest level has looked bleak.

He bagged 16 wickets in six matches for Faisalabad, the team he captained in the recently-concluded Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, at an average of 31.06. He won’t be featuring in the upcoming season of the Pakistan Super League either as he has been appointed as the bowling coach of Islamabad United. Chandika Hathurusingha has resigned from his role as head coach of the Bangladesh national team. The Sri Lankan, 49, had been in charge since 2014 and led the Tigers to maiden Test wins over England and Australia. However, Bangladesh were heavily beaten in their most recent series in South Africa, where they failed to win a single game on tour.

Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hasan said Hathurusingha has lost interest in the job.Speaking to Cricinfo, Hasan said: “He didn’t specifically mention a reason, so I can’t really say what has happened before I can speak to him. He said he is no longer interested.”

 

Tennis

Sania Mirza has crashed out of the top-10 women’s doubles rankings in the latest WTA chart for the first time since March 2014 and is now placed at number 12. After losing three places, Mirza finished at 12th place in the latest women’s doubles ranking after consistently maintaining her position in top-10 since March 17, 2013. The Hyderabad-born player was world number one in doubles through the entire 2016 season. Her downfall started this season in which she began as number one but failed to qualify for the year-end WTA Finale.

 

Football

2018 World Cup: Morocco and Tunisia both qualified for World Cup after their respective games with Ivory Coast and Libya. Tunisia booked their place in next year’s World Cup finals after securing a point from a goalless draw at home against neighbours Libya on November 11. Tunisia finished on 14 points in Group A of the African preliminaries, one ahead of the Democratic Republic of Congo, who fell short despite a 3-1 win over Guinea in Kinshasa at the same time.

Unbeaten Tunisia, who have been to four previous World Cup finals and were the first African country to win a game at the finals in 1978, were denied a fifth win in six group matches as Libya’s goalkeeper Mohamed Nashnush made a number of key saves.Diving saves kept Youssef Msakni, Anice Badri and Ghilane Chaalani from scoring as Nashnush proved a one-man roadblock. Goals from defenders Nabil Dirar and Medhi Benatia handed Morocco a 2-0 away win over the Ivory Coast in their last World Cup qualifier and booked a return to the finals for the first time in two decades.

Morocco needed only a draw to finish top of the Group C standings in the African preliminaries, ahead of the Ivorians, who had to win to clinch a fourth successive World Cup appearance. But after weathering an early storm, including a potential penalty call, Morocco scored two goals in the space of five minutes to put themselves on their way to the finals, in which they last appeared in 1998, in France. Morocco completed the campaign without conceding a goal, finishing with 12 points, four ahead of the Ivorians.

January transfers reports: Arsenal star Mesut Özil has spoken out amid speculation linking him with a move to Manchester United in the January transfer window. Özil is out of contract in north London next summer and it’s understood Jose Mourinho is determined to bring the 29-year-old midfielder to Old Trafford before next season. Reports suggest Arsenal will listen to offers of £30million for Özil but the German World Cup winner has rubbished the recent transfer rumours. “Obviously people are going to write and speculate. But I am 100 percent an Arsenal player,” said Özil. “I want to perform here and have fun here. I’m enjoying my time here but I can’t say what will happen in the future.”

Hatem Ben Arfa could be set for a return to the Premier League, with Leicester seemingly interested in signing the winger in January. The former Newcastle man has fallen out of favour at PSG and new Foxes boss Claude Puel is thought to be ready to make an approach. The pair previously worked together at Nice two seasons ago and Puel is confident of the winger’s ability.

New York City FC’s partnership with parent club Manchester City has already had its perks, and another potential move is in the works between the two City Football Group entities.The Major League Soccer side is reportedly in talks Man City over the services of veteran midfielder Yaya Toure. Toure, who has been with the Premier League side since 2010 when his brother  Kolo was also in the squad, has appeared in just four matches this season for the City.

Barcelona tried to sign Leicester forward Riyad Mahrez during the summer transfer window, Roma chief Monchi has claimed. The Algeria winger, who wanted to play Champions League football, was lined up by the Serie A giants as a replacement for Mohamed Salah after he joined Liverpool for £39million. But Mahrez remained at the King Power because no club would match the Foxes’ £50m valuation.

Valencia are on the trail of Manchester United’s Marouane Fellaini. The Belgian international is out of contract next summer and has so far not agreed on a deal to keep him at Old Trafford beyond the current campaign. United have not agreed to sell the 29-year-old, despite reports he was on his way to Turkish giants Besiktas in January. Valencia are also reportedly targeting Tottenham star Moussa Sissoko in January. The Spanish side are keen to bolster their attacking options are poised for another tilt at the French international who they value at £22million.

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The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence event is to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to society. Over 850 people from diverse background, Muslim and non-Muslim, attended the gala dinner.

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