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  • Ethiopian striker Getaneh Kebede knocked out by a punch, received medical treatment

    AFP – Ethiopia World Cup star Getaneh Gibeto was knocked out by a punch that went unpunished in the South African Premiership this weekend.

    Kaizer Chiefs and South Africa centre-back Morgan Gould floored the Wits University substitute with a left punch to the face during the second half.

    Groggy Gibeto carried on after lengthy medical treatment but the referee took no action against Gould at Soccer City stadium in Soweto.

    Gould apologised after a match defending champions Chiefs won 2-1 through a late own goal from Wits goalkeeper Moeneeb Josephs.

    “I would like to apologise to the Wits player that I punched — it was a freak accident,” said one of the ‘hard men’ of South African football.

    Gibeto hopes to play for Ethiopia in a World Cup play-off against Nigeria on November 16 after missing the 2-1 first-leg loss at home last month through injury.

    Chiefs spurned several first-half chances before Zimbabwean Kingston Nkhatha nodded the home side into an early second half lead.

    Ryan Chapman, a substitute for former Manchester City striker Benjamin ‘Benjani’ Mwaruwari, levelled on 66 minutes with a snap close-range shot.

    Seeking a first title, unfashionable Johannesburg side Wits looked likelier winners until a Lehlohonolo Majoro header struck the post and went into the net off Josephs.

    Chiefs are sixth on the table after 10 rounds — five points behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns and three adrift of second-place SuperSport United.

    Sundowns triumphed 3-1 at Pretoria University in a local derby while SuperSport used home advantage to win by the same score against lowly Golden Arrows.

    Zimbabwean Cuthbert Malajila became the leading Premiership scorer this season with five goals after volleying a cross from compatriot Khama Billiat into the Pretoria net on three minutes.

    Grant Kekana promptly equalised but Billiat put Sundowns ahead again on the half hour, netting off a superb long pass from Bongani Zungu.

    Pretoria were reduced to 10 men early in the second half when Mpho Matsi was yellow carded a second time and Rodney Ramagalela scored a late victory-clinching third goal.

    SuperSport put a three-goal hammering at Platinum Stars last weekend behind them to outplay second-last Arrows in Pretoria township Atteridgeville

    An early Bennett Chenene goal for the hosts was cancelled by Philani Shange before second-half strikes from Bradley Grobler and David Mathebula secured maximum points.

    Platinum grabbed a late 2-1 win at Maritzburg United and Free State Stars’ three-game losing run ended with an own goal giving them a 1-0 home victory over Polokwane City.

    AmaZulu fought back to draw 1-1 at home against Bloemfontein Celtic while Finnish goalkeeper Anssi Jaakkola starred as Ajax Cape Town forced a 0-0 draw at Mpumalanga Black Aces.


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  • Ethiopia deny attack on Nigeria team bus

    By Betemariam Hailu
    BBC Sport, Addis Ababa
    The Ethiopian Football Federation (EFF) has denied that there was an attack on the Nigerian team in Addis Ababa after their World Cup play-off first-leg tie.
    The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) said the team bus was attacked by Ethiopian fans and that midfielder Nosa Igiebor was injured.
    Continue reading the main story

    We've got nothing that shows that a player or any other individual was injured by fans

    EFF president Juinedin Basha
    The Super Eagles, who won the match 2-1, have reported the incident to Fifa.
    But the Ethiopian FA says an investigation led to no proof of the incident taking place.
    "There was no attack," EFF president Juinedin Basha told BBC Sport.
    "There was no one injured - either players or individuals from the Nigerian team on Sunday. This is what we found out from our investigation.
    "We have checked everything. We've got nothing that shows that a player or any other individual was injured by fans.
    "The Ethiopian people are known to be respectful to any African from every corner. This is our culture, this is our history and the Nigerians are our African brothers," he said.
    Basha, however, acknowledged that there were some angry fans, following a late penalty, which was converted by Nigeria's Emmanuel Emenike.
    "Of course the stadium was full of angry fans, who were disappointed by the referee's decision, especially after he ruled out the first goal."
    The Walya Antelopes thought they had opened the scoring after 24 minutes through Saladin Said, only for Godfrey Oboabona to clear off the line.
    The NFF said in a press statement that fans attacked the team bus with stones after the match, and that the rear window of the bus was shattered.
    "Igiebor was the unlucky one as the stone slashed his right palm leading to profuse bleeding that was immediately attended to by team doctor, Ibrahim Gyaran," Ben Alaiya, the Super Eagles press officer, said.
    The Ethiopian FA was fined last January after travelling Ethiopian fans at the Africa Cup of Nations in South Africa threw bottles at Zambian players.
    The East Africans travel to Calabar on 16 November for the return leg of the play-off, with the winners progressing to the World Cup finals in Brazil.


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  • "I think i should quit after the Chan" Ethiopia Coach Sewnet Bishaw

    by Collins Okinyo  

    Ethiopia's national team coach Sewnet Bishaw has hinted at quitting after the CHAN to be hosted by South Africa in 2014.

    Bishaw said that he was tired after been in charge for over two years with all pressures that go with the game adding that he hopes to finally retire and spend time with his family.

    "I think i should quit after the Chan or if we qualify for the World Cup as I feel really tired. Working for two years straight as coach is not an easy task considering this is the toughest job for anyone. For example, I have been with the team from September and have not even seen my family in that duration and I am feeling drained.”

    "It’s been tough but I am happy with how well things have gone. If we qualify for the World Cup then I can wait but I think I will call it quits after the Chan in South Africa so that I can rest and focus on my life as I will have achieved more than I set up for myself and the team," Bishaw told in Addis Ababa.

    Bishaw is credited for helping Ethiopia qualify for the 2013 Afcon ,Chan 2014 and reaching the 2014 World cup playoffs.


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  • Only 6 players open Nigeria camp ahead of Ethiopia clash

    Abuja – Only one foreign-based and five home-based players were in camp on Monday a day after the Super Eagles opened camp ahead of Sunday’s 2014 World Cup Qualifier in Addis Ababa.

    The team’s camp for the Oct. 13 game had opened on Sunday, Oct. 6 in Abuja.

    The Eagles are to face the Walya Antelopes of Ethiopia in the first leg tie of their 2014 FIFA World Cup Africa Qualifiers Final Round pairing.

    Emmanuel Attah, the Super Eagles Co-ordinator, however said that other invited players were on their way to the team’s camp.

    The team head coach Stephen Keshi had earlier invited to camp 23 players, made up of 18 foreign-based and five home-based.

    “We are still expecting them in Abuja after a busy weekend schedule in their various league competitions. We know they are all on their way,’’ Attah said.

    He said the players in camp as at Monday evening included Solomon Kwambe of Sunshine Stars FC of Akure and Francis Benjamin of Heartland FC of Owerri.

    “The others are the trio of Azubuike Egwuekwe, Sunday Mba and goalkeeper Chigozie Agbim from Rangers International FC of Enugu.

    “The only foreign-based player in camp as at this evening is Uche Nwafor, who is on loan to Herenveen FC of The Netherlands from VVV Venlo FC, also of The Netherlands,’’ the team co-ordinator said.

    He said the team’s training was not likely to commence in the morning of Oct. 8 in view ofr this development.

    “The players are just arriving. But training is likely to begin in the evening tomorrow, when a handful of the players must have arrived,’’ Attah said.

    He said the team’s technical crew members, such as Keshi and Daniel Amokachi, the assistant coach, were already on ground to prepare the team for the encounter.

    The match has been scheduled to take place at the 28,000-capacity Addis Ababa National Stadium, with the second leg game scheduled for Calabar on Nov. 16.(NAN)

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  • Ethiopian Fikadu Lemma and Tigist Tufa, win men and women half marathon in Providence

    Watch Video

    PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) - Fikadu Lemma and Tigist Tufa were the men's and women's winners of this year's Rock 'n' Roll Providence Half Marathon.

    Lemma, of Ethiopia, finished the men's race in a time of 1:09. Tufa finished in the women's race in 1:10:51.

    Patrick Moulton and Katie Moulton, a husband and wife from Providence, were the second-place runners in each race, finishing with times of 1:11:04 and 1:19:42, respectively.

    The half-marathon began near the State House on Gaspee Street and drew about 6,000 runners. Watch Video

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  • Ethiopia’s Tirunesh Dibaba pulls out of London Marathon

    LONDON: Ethiopia’s Olympic 10,000 metres champion Tirunesh Dibaba has withdrawn from next month’s London Marathon with a shin injury, organisers said on Thursday.

    Dibaba had been set for her debut over the 42.195-km distance but an old lower leg problem has flared up during training for the race.

    “I have been in training for the London Marathon, but the increase in mileage has caused a flare up of my previous lower leg injury,” she said in a statement.

    “As a result, I won’t be able to compete in this year’s London Marathon but I look forward to making my marathon debut there next year.”

    Dibaba had been aiming to become the first Ethiopian woman to win the London race since her cousin Derartu Tulu in 2001.

    Ethiopia’s challenge in the women’s race will now be spearheaded by Olympic champion Tiki Gelana who is running the London Marathon for the first time.

    “Of course, it is disappointing to lose Tirunesh. She has been such a fantastic athlete on the track, and everyone was full of anticipation to see how well she performed in a marathon,” race director Hugh Brasher said.

    Dibaba is a three-time Olympic champion, having also won the 5,000 and 10,000 at the 2008 Beijing Games.

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  • Ethiopian Asylee Misiker Demissie wins women's title at Hong Kong Marathon for second time

    Having pocketed almost US$150,000 from her two triumphs so far, Ethiopian vows to come back for more
    Monday, 25 February, 2013, 12:00am
    James Porteous

    The Hong Kong Marathon is proving to be a nice little earner for Misiker Demissie, who heads back to her New Mexico home US$62,000 richer after becoming the first woman to retain the title.

    The Ethiopian smashed the course record last year by 3-1/2 minutes to earn US$85,000, and though this year she couldn't pocket another new-record bonus, it was still not a bad payday for two hours, 30 minutes and 49 seconds' work.

    That time was 37 seconds slower than she ran last year, but still enough to stave off the challenge of fellow Ethiopian Makda Harun (2:31.20) and Kim Kum-ok of North Korea (2:32.21).

    "Today was a bit more windy than last year, which probably was the reason I went a bit slower, although I like racing in those conditions. It was good," said Demissie.

    The 26-year-old seems a confident sort, and admitted she fully expected to lift the title again.

    "There were a lot of good runners here and I had to really be at my best," she said. "I really had to try hard - I wasn't surprised with the result though."

    Demissie followed the same tactics as last year, with her rivals unable to stick with her after she surged ahead with about eight kilometres to go.

    "I ran my usual strategy," she said. "Every marathon I pace myself until the 35km point and then I'm going. I was confident I could win again, I've put in a lot of training and with the help of God I won - I'm delighted."

    The next big target for Demissie is a trip to the Netherlands in October for the Amsterdam marathon, quite the opposite to Hong Kong in terms of elevation.

    "It's a flat course so compared to here it should be easy," she joked. "I think I can win it. I certainly hope to put it in a good time."

    Coach and husband Zereu Kelele said last year's bumper payday was "life-changing" for Demissie, who used to compete as a Bahraini under the name Teyba Naser before seeking religious asylum in the United States.

    With another five-figure sum in the bank from this trip (US$57,000 for winning plus US$5,000 for finishing under 2:32.00), it's no wonder the pair will be back next year.

    "I love the people, everybody's really nice and they take care of you well," Demissie said. "The course really seems to suit me and I'll definitely be coming back next year - and looking to win again."

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  • Nigeria's Ahmed Musa says Ethiopia was the toughest opponent at Nation's Cup
    Ahmed Musa has told Ethiopia posed a much tougher challenge for the Eagles than Cote d’Ivoire at the recent AFCON. 

    The CSKA Moscow star also admitted he was not at his best in South Africa, but has promised a better outing at the FIFA Confederations Cup in June as well as the 2014 World Cup, all in Brazil. 

    The interview:

    MTNFOOTBALL.COM: How would you describe your experience at just concluded Africa Cup of Nations? 

    AHMED MUSA: It was a great and worthwhile experience, something I have never witnessed.

    You won the Nations Cup in only your first outing. 

    I was on top of the world when the referee blew the final whistle against Burkina Faso to signal that we are the champions. It was a great one for me.

    What was going through your mind during the game against Ethiopia when the goal was not forthcoming? 

    I was not too comfortable, but I had hope and belief that we will win, but I didn’t know by how many goals and how the goals would come.

    So, which was your toughest game at Nations Cup? 

    Ethiopia were our toughest opponents. That match was tougher than the one against Cote d’Ivoire and even the final. 

    What made the Super Eagles to fly so high in South Africa? 

    We saw ourselves as same blood, brothers fighting for one cause. That was what made us to win the trophy.

    Who do you dedicate your AFCON winners’ medal to?

    I dedicate it to the entire people of Nigeria because they supported me and the team in prayers.

    Who was the first person you talked to after the final match? 

    My mother

    Everybody expected Cote d’Ivoire to beat Nigeria in the quarterfinals, but was not the case. Would you say that was the turning point for the Eagles? 

    Not really. It is true that majority of people saw the match against Cote d’Ivoire as our last in South Africa, but we never believed they are better than us. We went into this game with very high hopes to win it. 

    How would you describe the reception you got on arrival in Nigeria? 

    It was heartwarming. Right from the airport people showed us love. We were very happy with the turnout of the fans. 

    After winning the Nations Cup, what is your next target with the Eagles? 

    My target is to go to the World Cup next year and perform far batter there.

    You were in killer form before the AFCON and Nigerians were looking up to you as one of the players to even gun for the top scorer award, what happened that Ahmed Musa slowed down there? 

    That is football for you. It is up and down. I did my best though, but I am looking forward to a better display at the World Cup. Confederations Cup is our next competition and winning the trophy is also the target.

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  • BBC reporter about Ethiopian fans: The best supporters I have seen at any Africa Cup of Nations tournament

    Nations Cup 2013: BBC reporters pick their highlights

    Nigeria are continuing to celebrate their third Africa Cup of Nations triumph, while Burkina Faso have spoken of their pride in reaching a continental final for the first time.
    The BBC's team in South Africa covered every kick across radio, television and online throughout the finals and here some of them reflect on their highlights of the tournament.

    Player of the tournament: He ran out of steam against Nigeria in the final but without their inspirational midfielder Charles Kabore, Burkina Faso would have got nowhere near that showpiece. I spoke to the team's fitness coach and he told me Kabore ran further than any other player in the quarter-final against Togo, but recovered quicker than anyone else before the semi-final against Ghana, when he was by far the best player on the pitch. Alain Traore's goals grabbed the headlines but Kabore made Burkina Faso tick. I'd love to see him play in the English Premier League.
    2013 NATIONS CUP
    Winners: Nigeria (52nd in Fifa rankings)

    Runners-up: Burkina Faso (92)

    Semi-finalists: Mali (25) and Ghana (26)

    Top scorers (four goals): Mubarak Wakaso (Ghana) and Emmanuel Emenike (Nigeria)

    Team of the tournament: I had the pleasure of spending a lot of time with the Togo team in the early stages of what was a very emotional few weeks for the Sparrow Hawks. They were playing at the finals for the first time since the horrific attack on their team bus in Cabinda before the 2010 tournament. Ahead of their first match, I spoke to vice-captain Serge Akakpo, who was shot in the back during that incident, and he told me before every training session they pray for the victims. Against all the odds - and inspired by striker Emmanuel Adebayor - Togo reached the quarter-finals after a stunning win over Algeria and were unlucky not to reach the last four.
    Best match: The semi-final between Burkina Faso and Ghana will be remembered for an awful performance by the referee - who was suspended the day after the match - but it was great entertainment. The Black Stars took the lead after 13 minutes from a controversial penalty and after that it was end-to-end stuff. Cult hero Aristide Bance equalised, Burkina Faso's star player Joanathan Pitroipa was sent off and they had a legitimate goal ruled out. Then came the penalty shoot-out and more heartbreak for Ghana as Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu missed the crucial spot kick. Surely the most dramatic match of the tournament.
    Best goal: In one of the worst matches of the tournament - against Algeria in the group stage - Tunisia's Youssef Msakni came up with a moment of magic. The winger - who has been linked with Arsenal in the past - swerved past one Algeria defender and from 25 yards curled the ball into the back of the net to give his side a precious 1-0 victory against their local rivals.
    Favourite moment of the tournament: Interviewing an emotional Serge Akakpo in the Togo team hotel and then watching him help the team to reach the knockout stages. Also, seeing the Nigerian journalists totally lose it in the press box when Sunday Mba scored the winning goal against Ivory Coast in the quarter-final and commentating on Joseph Yobo - who was always great to interview - lifting the Cup of Nations trophy in his sixth and final tournament.
    Rate the hosts: The South African people were very welcoming and the stadiums were fantastic but the buzz around the tournament felt very different to a year ago when I was in the city of Libreville in Gabon. That was a much smaller place and they weren't used to hosting such big events so the excitement levels were huge. But here in South Africa it was very different, particularly in a place like Rustenburg where the attendances were poor. Having said that the atmosphere at the final was fantastic and the people of Johannesburg made it an occasion to remember.


    Cape Verde striker Heldon Ramos celebrates his historic goal against Angola
    Player of the tournament: Ghana's Mubarak Wakaso gets my vote after having started the tournament without playing a competitive game and ending it as the tournament's joint top scorer. His work rate impressed in all the games that he played and he certainly didn't look out of place alongside the talents of Kwadwo Asamoah and Emmanuel Ageymang-Badu in the Black Stars' midfield. His ability from the dead ball meant that Ghana always looked a threat. But he does need to watch his discipline - getting a second yellow card against Mali for a goal celebration showed a little immaturity. He will also have to learn to cope with pressure after missing a penalty in the third-place play-off loss to Mali that would have won him the tournament's golden boot.
    Team of the tournament: No-one gave Cape Verde a chance going into the tournament and they proved everyone wrong from the start to the final whistle of their campaign. They frustrated hosts South Africa and silenced the partisan crowd in the opening match. They led against Morocco and looked the better team for most of that Group A match. They came from a goal down to beat Angola in the final 10 minutes. And in the only game they lost, they outplayed Ghana in their quarter-final. No-one will underestimate Cape Verde in the future and, along with Ethiopia and Burkina Faso, they proved the old cliche that there are no small teams in football anymore.
    Best match: After two very poor opening games in Group A, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Ghana brought the tournament to life with their 2-2 draw in Port Elizabeth. Ghana took the lead, despite looking vulnerable at the back, with a well-worked goal that Ageymang-Badu slid home after a cross from Asamoah, who later headed a goal of his own. The two strikes came five minutes either side of half-time and Ghana looked set for a comfortable win. But DR Congo's attacking threats, Tresor Mputu Mabi, Dieumerci Mbokani and Lomana LuaLua never gave up and caused the Ghana defence real problems. Mputu Mabi's neat finish and a controversial Mbokani penalty saw a highly entertaining game end all square.
    Best goal: Heldon's winner for Cape Verde against Angola maybe not have been the most spectacular but the celebrations it sparked and what it meant for his country make it a stand-out moment. His side were drawing 1-1 in added time and heading out of the tournament but they refused to give up and Heldon took his chance in some style to smash home a winner that put his side in the last eight at their debut tournament.
    Favourite moment of the tournament: Seeing Cape Verde coach Lucio Antunes racing around the Nelson Mandela Bay stadium with his national flag after the win over Angola and then the team mobbing him during the post-match press conference. He didn't let go of the flag until after he left the stadium.
    Rate the hosts: The stadiums were great and, as was expected, most things worked smoothly, but as always the lack of crowds was a problem. In Port Elizabeth you never really felt a buzz around the city or a sense that the tournament was happening. The much-maligned pitch in Nelspruit also really let the hosts down.

    Player of the tournament: Nigeria midfielder Victor Moses stood out, which wasn't difficult early on in the tournament in a Nigerian time that took its time to get going - but he was also influential when the team improved.
    Team of the tournament: The champions, Nigeria. Fast, flowing football from the Super Eagles whose young players have grown in stature. They were a revelation in the quarter-final against Ivory Coast and proved it was no fluke with an even better performance against Mali in the last four.
    Best match: Without doubt, the second semi-final between Ghana and Burkina Faso, in Nelspruit. It was an end-to-end affair and produced a defiant performance from the Burkinabe in the face of some shocking decisions by the referee.
    Best goal: Super Eagles strike Emmanuel Emenike's bullet for Nigeria against Ivory Coast was unstoppable, as it spurred them on to a 2-1 win over the pre-tournament favourites.
    Favourite moment of the tournament: Whenever the Ethiopians came to town. The best supporters I have seen at any Africa Cup of Nations tournament I have covered.
    Rate the hosts: The media facilities were hopeless and information was sometimes difficult to obtain. But the teams seemed happy playing in world-class stadiums - if not on world-class playing surfaces in some of them - and the locals were terrific.


    Hosts South Africa improved after a sluggish opening game against Cape Verde
    Player of the tournament: Burkina Faso captain Charles Kabore - a man of seemingly endless energy who powered the Stallions to the final, not least because it was frequently him who created the chances for Pitroipa, Traore and Bance up front. An exceptional talent.
    Team of the tournament: : The team I enjoyed watching the most were Burkina Faso - for the chances, the goal-scorers and the drama. But I think my team of the tournament has to be Nigeria, for the way they shrugged off a sluggish group campaign to see off Ivory Coast and power past Mali into the final. Some brilliant youngsters to watch out for and a team for the future.
    Best match: The best game that I saw in person was the quarter-final between Mali and South Africa in Durban. It was not technically the best performance from either side, but the hosts played their hearts out in the Moses Mabhida stadium, only to come to grief in the shoot-out. Bafana Bafana tried everything to break down the formidable Malian defence, who weathered it all. The Eagles knew what they were doing and did it well.
    Best goal: Three contenders: Sunday Mba's winner in the final, Youssef Msakni's strike against Algeria in the group stage and Alain Traore's second against Ethiopia for Burkina Faso in an emphatic 4-0 win. Traore gets my nod.
    Favourite moment of the tournament: The moment we realised Burkina Faso were going to make a real impact, namely Traore's late, late equaliser in the opening group game against Nigeria. A personal dislike of the trip was the moment when South African fans decided they had seen enough during the penalty shoot-out against Mali. The team had given their all but the majority of people in the stadium couldn't be bothered to stay and thank them.
    Rate the hosts: I thought the South African team played themselves to a standstill in the quarter-final against Mali, and their win over Angola in their second group game was great to see. South Africa keeper Itumeleng Khune stood out for his outstanding distribution, midfielder Dean Furman for his amazing work-rate and if Thulani Serero had been able to have more influence they might have looked even better. It was a grim opening match against Cape Verde, but they really improved after that - and all credit must go to coach Gordon Igesund.

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