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CAF Explains Termination Of $1 Billion Lagardere Contract

The Confederation of African Football have explained the cancellation of its $1 billion deal with Lagardere Sports in a statement, citing irregularities discovered before the agreement was reached.
In 2016, Lagardere signed a 12-year deal with the continent’s football authority as their exclusive agent for the sale of the rights, including broadcast rights, for its competitions, including the Africa Cup of Nations, the African Nations Championship and the Caf Champions League.
“In 2017, the Egyptian Competition Authority (ECA) found that the Agreement breached Egyptian competition rules because Lagardere was appointed as Caf’s exclusive agent for the marketing and media rights for an uninterrupted 20-year period without any open tender,” read a statement on Caf’s website, published on Friday.

“By the same decision, ECA declared the Agreement null and void and imposed a number of remedies on Caf. Those remedies included the obligation to immediately terminate the Agreement and suspend its effects within the Egyptian market.”
The ECC also imposed a fine of EGP 200 million on Caf and its former president, Issa Hayatou and former secretary-general, Hicham El Amrani, although Caf are due to share the liability for repaying these fines.
The statement also confirmed that the Competition Commission of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa [the CCC] had recommended the termination of the deal, with a financial penalty on the football governing body.
On Tuesday, Caf reached a decision to cancel the deal that was expected to run through till 2028, prompting a response from Lagardere.
“At a meeting held [on Tuesday], the Confederation of African Football informed Lagardere Sports of its unilateral decision to cancel the agency agreement binding the two companies to 2028. The cancellation is to take effect immediately,” the agency’s statement read [as per Sport Business].
“Lagardere strongly contests this decision, which, in its view, is unlawful, unreasonable and unjustified. Lagardere maintains that there is no reason – including the ongoing investigation by the Comesa Competition Commission, which has yet to issue its decision – to cancel the agreement at this stage.
“Lagardere deeply regrets this situation and has asked the CAF to adopt a more reasonable position and honour its commitments.
“Caf has a responsibility to support Lagardere Sports in the ongoing proceedings before the CCC with a view to maintaining the agreement, adjusted, as necessary, following discussions with the authorities, in their common interest and in the interests of African football.
“Failing this, Lagardere will take any and all action to defend its interests and obtain compensation for any harm it may suffer.”
In its response to the statement, Caf defended its decision as a legal consequence of the various boards’ findings. They revealed that they had also extended an invitation to Lagardere in order to discuss the way forward, but that the media conglomerate are yet to take them up on their offer.
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Rohr: No Truth In Ejaria, Eze Comparison Reports

Super Eagles head coach Gernot Rohr has denied reports that he rated Ovie Ejaria better than  Ebere Eze and that he has mandated the Nigeria Football Federation to get the former into his team immediately, reports

Ejaria and Eze, born by different  Nigerian parents are still eligible to play for the Super Eagles though they have both featured  for England at the U-20 and U-21 levels.

The duo are been courted by the NFF to switch allegiance and feature for the Super Eagles at the senior level.

However, reports emerged recently in some section of the media that Rohr would prefer to have Ejaria in his team  instead of Eze.

The German tactician has however come out to deny the claim in strong terms and insists it is not his tradition to compare players.

 “My attention has been drawn to some statements online that I have described Reading FC player Ovie Ejaria as a better player than Queens Park Rangers’ Ebere Eze and so the Nigeria Football Federation(NFF) should get him in the team immediately,”reads a quote credited to Rohr on the official Twitter handle of the NFF on Wednesday.

“This is totally false and very disrespectful to both players. I never compare players and I have not asked the NFF to make any approach for the player in question.

“I will never ask the NFF publicly to approach any player for our team. We have our processes and it certainly doesn’t include sharing such information publicly.

“Furthermore I think there must be restraint in press statements purportedly quoting me and my person in terms of interviews.

“I share a very good relationship with the media in Nigeria but this must not be abused to the extent of misquoting me and making wrong claims about my person.”

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Undefeated Ajagba Faces Georgia’s Kiladze in Heavyweight Boxing Bout December 21

Nigerian heavyweight boxer Efe Ajagba will hope to maintain his unbeaten record and his march towards the world Heavyweight boxing Championship when he clashes with Georgia’s Lago Kiladze, reports.
The fight is billed for the Toyota Arena, Ontario, California, USA, on December 21st, 2019.
Nicknamed “The One and Only”, and standing at 6 foot 6 inches tall, with a reach of 85 inches (216 cm), this will be Ajagba’s 12th bout since turning professional.

In his last fight against Turkey’s Ali Eren Demirezen on July 20th, 2019, Ajagba was declared winner via an unanimous points decision.
It was the first time Demirezen will taste defeat as a professional boxer after initially winning all of his 11 fights, with 10 coming via knockouts.
For 33-year-old Kiladze, who stands at 6′ 3 1/2, with a reach of 79 inches (201), he will be looking forward to his first win since November 2017.
With a record of 26 wins, 18 coming via knockouts, Kiladze, a former World Boxing Association (WBA) Inter-Continental cruiserweight title-holder, has lost four of his professional fights.
Efe Ajagba outboxing Amir Mansour Ronnie
He has not won any of his last four fights going into his clash against his 25-year-old Nigerian opponent.
In his last fight against unbeaten Robert Alfonso on May, 2019, the contest ended in a draw.
Prior to the fight against Alfonso, he lost all his three fights in 2018, suffering knockouts in all of them.
Kiladze started 2018 with a loss to Adam Kownacki and was floored by Michael Hunter in June before another knock down defeat to Joe Joyce in September.
Will Ajagba continue his unbeaten streak or suffer his first ever defeat as a professional boxer? The answer will be known come December 21st in Ontario.
By James Agberebi
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Joshua Hits Back At Wilder Following Criticism Over His Performance In Ruiz Victory

Anthony Joshua has defended his cautious and tactful display against Andy Ruiz Jr, which saw him become a two-time heavyweight world champion on Saturday night in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia.
Joshua outfoxed and outboxed Ruiz Jr in their rematch fight to claim a unanimous points win and revenge for his shock defeat six months ago.
The fight was devoid of spectacle and although Joshua mostly received praise for executing his game plan from those inside the sport, there were some who critcised the Brit.

WBC champion Deontay Wilder was unimpressed by Joshua’s performance and blasted his ‘jab-and-grab’ technique in the hours after his victory.
Wilder told The Athletic: ‘Joshua did what he had to do to get the win. He ran around the ring and was on his bike all day.
‘You want to dominate guys, man. I’m not coming in, after losing to this guy, to just dance and grab and jab and hold. I’m going to show the world and convince them I am the very best and that no one is close to me.’
AJ hit back at his rival’s comments, insisting that he deserves credit for showing the discipline to box smart and prise back the heavyweight world titles.
‘That’s Wilder’s opinion,’ Joshua said. ‘A lot of people don’t have a good bone in their body to say a positive thing anyway. I outboxed the heavyweight champion of the world for 12 rounds. I don’t think I lost a round. Maybe one.
‘I come in there with a great game plan, I’m successful. Isn’t that good enough?
‘You can’t box to keep everyone happy; you have to box for the win. And I feel like when I’m at home celebrating, he’s there talking about negativity. Negative energy breeds failure so I’m just going to keep a positive mindset and build on that victory.’
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