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AFCON 2024: Côte d’Ivoire to boost cooperation with Nigeria

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The Ambassador of Côte d’Ivoire to Nigeria, Mr. Kalilou Traore, has emphasized that the upcoming 2024 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) will provide a significant opportunity for his country to enhance collaboration with Nigeria.

In an interview with reporters in Abuja on Sunday, Traore highlighted the importance of using the AFCON tournament, scheduled to take place from January 14 to February 13, 2024, as a platform to strengthen diplomatic ties between the two nations.

Traore emphasized that the AFCON event offers a compelling occasion for both countries to deepen cooperation and foster fraternity. He pointed out that beyond the football matches, attendees would have the chance to engage with others, fostering business opportunities as well.

“As an Embassy, we are collaborating with our partners and organizing packages for those interested in participating in AFCON in Abidjan,” Traore stated, underlining the efforts to facilitate the participation of individuals in the event.

The envoy also highlighted the existing strong relationship between the leaders of both countries at various levels, including Heads of State and Heads of Ministries, indicating the presence of multiple agreements between the governments of Nigeria and Côte d’Ivoire.

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Serie A: Osimhen on target in Napoli’s draw at Cagliari

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Victor Osimhen found the net for the second game in a row as Napoli settled for a 1-1 draw against Cagliari.

Osimhen put Napoli ahead in the 65th minute when Giancomo Raspadori intercepted Tommaso Augello’s pass and delivered a cross to the back post for Osimhen to head home.

This marked the Nigeria international’s eighth goal of the season in the league.

Despite numerous opportunities, Napoli failed to extend their lead, and Zito Luvumbo leveled the score for the home team in added time.

With 37 points from 25 matches, Napoli climbed to ninth place in the standings.

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UCL: Calzona warns Osimhen, others on player selection

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Napoli coach Francesco Calzona has issued a stern warning to Victor Osimhen and his fellow players, emphasizing that he will base his selection for matches solely on performance, without considering their names or reputations.

Taking over from Walter Mazzarri on Monday, Calzona made significant substitutions during Napoli’s 1-1 draw with Barcelona on Wednesday night, including star forwards Osimhen and Kvicha Kvaratskhelia.

Despite the Serie A champions securing a draw in the first leg of the Round of 16 contest at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium, Osimhen was replaced immediately after scoring the equalizer in the 75th minute.

“I keep the players on the field who are performing well, I don’t take into account their names,” Calzona emphasized to Sky Sports Italia after the match.

Calzona further explained that he had not been tempted to keep Osimhen on the field longer after his goal. “No, in fact, I had been prepared to substitute him earlier, but due to tactical considerations, I kept him on for a few more minutes.”

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Ex-Chelsea boss, Thomas Tuchel confirms exit from Bayern Munich

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Thomas Tuchel has verified his exit from Bayern Munich. The club had previously announced that the German coach would depart at the conclusion of the ongoing season. The decision to part ways was mutual between the club and Tuchel. Confirming the conclusion of his tenure with Bayern, Tuchel informed reporters on Tuesday, “We have agreed to terminate our partnership after the conclusion of this season. Until then, my coaching staff and I will continue to strive for maximum success for FC Bayern.”

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