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Cancellation Report ‘Fake News’ says Olympics Organisers

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Tokyo Olympics organisers played down a poll showing plunging support for the Games on Tuesday and said a report claiming cancellation could be discussed next month was “fake news”.

The comments, less than 200 days before the postponed Games start in July, come with greater Tokyo under a state of emergency over a spike in coronavirus cases and with countries around the world battling outbreaks.

In a New Year’s address to staff, Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto put a positive spin on a Kyodo news poll published Sunday showing 45 percent want the 2020 Games delayed again, with 35 percent favouring outright cancellation.

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“The number of people calling for it to be cancelled has only risen by about five percent,” Muto said.

“The number of people calling for it to be postponed has risen a lot, but that means those people still want it to be held,” he added.

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“Of course, for it to be held, we have to guarantee that we hold a safe Games with anti-virus measures. If you think of it in those terms, I firmly believe people will get more and more behind it.”

British rowing great Matthew Pinsent has called for the Games to be cancelled and Tokyo to host the event in 2024 instead, replacing Paris.

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Muto also dismissed as “fake news” a Japanese media report claiming the International Olympic Committee and Tokyo 2020 organisers would debate the fate of the Games in February.

“When these types of reports surface, some people might feel anxious about them,” said Muto.

“I want to say that we are not thinking that way at all, and that these reports are wrong.”

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Football

UEFA Europa League Last 16 Draw Done (SEE FULL DRAW)

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UEFA Europa League Last 16 Draw

The draw for Europa League last-16 for 2020/21 season was done today.

The Europa League last 16 will take place between March 11 and March 18, with the draw for the quarter-finals and semi-finals the following day after the second leg. 

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The quarter-finals will then be played between April 8 and April 15, while the semi-finals will be played on both April 29 and May 6. 

Premiership club, Manchester United will face Italian giants, AC Milan in the tie of the Europa League last-16, while Arsenal will take on Olympiacos. 

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The final, which will be in Gdansk, Poland this year, will take place on May 26.  

See full draw below. 

UEFA Europa League Last 16 Draw
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Football

Michail Antonio Set To Ditch England National Team For Jamaica

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Michail Antonio

West Han United Forward, Michail Antonio is reportedly set to change his international allegiance from England to Jamaica in a bid to play at the 2022 World Cup.

Michail Antonio, who was born to Jamaican parents in in London, England, turned down the opportunity to represent Jamaica in 2016 and was later called up to England squads by Sam Allardyce and Gareth Southgate but did not make his debut.

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The Telegraph reports that Antonio will choose to accept Jamaica’s latest approach with their Football Federation hoping he will be available for the CONCACAF qualifiers in September against Mexico and Costa Rica.

The 30-year-old, whose current form has helped his club climbed into the Champions League places, revealed he rejected several approaches from Jamaica in 2016 because of his dream to play for England.

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Speaking in 2016, after he was called up to the England squad by Allardyce, he said: ‘I turned down an approach from Jamaica in March and for this to happen so quickly, I’m buzzing. I just want to keep my feet on the floor.

‘In my first season in the Premier League, even though I had good stats, the England manager would have had to take a risk on me.

‘It looks like the gaffer now believes that I’ve done enough to be in there, so hopefully, I can prove him right.’

The forward was then called up by Southgate in 2017 but he was forced to withdraw from the squad due to injury.

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Football

Ronaldinho Speaks After Losing Mother

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Ronaldinho Loses Mother

Football legend, Ronaldinho has spoke after he lost his mother, Miguelina Eloi Assis dos Santos last Saturday.


On Tuesday night, February 23, Ronaldinho sent a message via his social media account to thank fans and friends for their show of support following the news of his mother’s death. 

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“My family and I thank you all for the love and support we are receiving at this difficult time. My mother was an inspiration of strength and joy to all who knew her and will continue to exert her light in our lives forever. With the strength she taught us, we will continue our journey. Thank you ”, he wrote in his post accompanied with an image of him hugging his mother.

ALSO READ  Ronaldinho Speaks After Losing Mother

His mother passed away on Saturday, February 20, in Porto Alegre, Brazil, from COVID-19 complications. She was hospitalized since December 2020 after having been infected with COVID-19.

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Entertainment

Burna Boy Features In New Pepsi Advert Alongside Messi, Pogba, Sancho, Others

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Burna Boy Features In New Pepsi Advert Alongside Messi, Pogba, Sancho, Others

Nigerian Musician, Burna Boy featured in a new Pepsi advert alongside football stars Leo Messi, Paul Pogba, Jadon Sancho and Others.

Burna boy who is a brand ambassador for Pepsi joined other ambassadors as he voiced the theme song in their newest ad which he shared on his official Twitter page.

The song for Pepsi is a new track ‘Rotate’ featuring Becky G on the new Pepsi “Fizz To Life” spot featuring Lionel Messi, Paul Pogba, Jadon Sancho and athlete, Shanice Van De Sanden.

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This is coming after his song ‘Collateral Damage‘ has been used as theme song for popular video game, “Need for Speed Heat”.

Watch the video below:

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Sports

Juventus Goalkeeper Buffon Fined $6,000 By Italian Football Federation

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Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon was on Thursday fined 5,000 euros ($6,000) by the Italian Football Federation for blasphemy.

The 43-year-old Italian World Cup winner, who escaped a ban for the offence, was overheard using a “blasphemous expression” towards teammate Manolo Portanova during Juve’s 4-0 league win over Parma on December 19.

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Buffon, who holds the record for Serie A matches played with 653 to date, was not caught on camera but there was an audio recording of the incident.

Since 2010, the Italian FA have taken disciplinary action against several players and coaches heard disrespecting God or the sacred.

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But the penalties have increased this season with empty stadiums allowing the microphones and cameras to capture heated exchanges between players and coaches.

AS Roma midfielder Bryan Cristante and Lazio’s Manuel Lazzari were both suspended for a match this season for “blasphemous” remarks.

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The Italian federation are also probing an altercation between Inter Milan’s Romelu Lukaku and AC Milan’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic on the pitch in January, and Inter coach Antonio Conte and Juve president Andre Agnelli on the sidelines of an Italian Cup game last week.

AFP

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