13 October 2017

Nigeria: Wenger Salutes Nigeria Over Super Eagles Qualification

Photo: Arsene Wenger/ Wikimedia Commons
Arsene Wenger, Arsenal Manager

Arsenal Manager, Arsene Wenger, has congratulated Nigeria for emerging the first African country to book her passage to the World Cup 2018 scheduled to hold in Russia.

Apparently aware of the massive followership his North London club enjoys in Nigeria, the Frenchman was extremely pleased that one of his players, Alex Iwobi, scored the vital goal that gave Nigeria the ticket to the tournament for the sixth time.

In a 22-second message posted on Arsenal's Facebook account thursday, Wenger was delighted and proud to see Iwobi playing a major role in Nigeria's success in the qualification series.

"Congratulations to all our fans in Nigeria. I know that there are very, very, very many of you and we are very proud that you have qualified for the World Cup," Wenger remarked thursday.

He stated further that: "On top of that, our player, (Iwobi) scored the goal for you and that makes us ever prouder.

"Well done, and see you in the World Cup. I am sure you will have a great, great trip there," concludes the message from the Gunners boss.

Iwobi, who was a second half substitute scored the goal that ended Chipolopolo of Zambia's quest to reach their first World Cup.

The Nigeria is expected to be in action this weekend when Arsenal visits Watford in the English Premiership.

Similarly, Super Eagles' Captain, John Mikel Obi's girlfriend, Olga Diyacheko, has sent a congratulatory message to her hear-throb.

Olga, who is the mother of Mikel's twins, took to Instagram to celebrate her lover's leadership performance that gave Nigeria the right to play at the finals in the country of her birth next year.

In her message via Instagram monitored yesterday, she wrote; "well done @Mikel John Obi and welcome to Russia Nigeria".

The message shortly after it was posted attracted several comments from Mikel's Russian in-laws who are looking forward to receiving him at the football showpiece next year. There were over 2,188 likes moments after it was posted on the social media platform.

Meanwhile, Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has said that next year's World Cup will be a "big mess" if it is marred by racism and discrimination.

Toure, 34, was the subject of racist chants when City played CSKA Moscow in the Champions League in Russia in 2013.

He wants to help FIFA and the Russian government tackle the problem in the build-up to next summer's tournament.

"We have to see change because people have been talking but nothing has really been taken care of," he added.

Last month, Liverpool complained to UEFA about alleged racist abuse directed at winger Bobby Adekanye during a UEFA Youth League match at Spartak Moscow.

In 2015, former Arsenal midfielder Emmanuel Frimpong was sent off while playing for Russian side FC Ufa after he gestured to the crowd with his middle finger in response to alleged monkey chants.

Ex-Zenit St Petersburg striker Hulk, meanwhile, claimed he was racially abused in "almost every game" he played in Russia.

Toure has taken part in a short film supporting a campaign tackling discrimination in football.

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