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Paris, LA to host 2024 & 2028 Olympics

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Paris and Los Angeles have been named as hosts of the 2024 and 2028 summer Games respectively by the International Olympic Committee.

Both cities had wanted to host the 2024 event, before LA agreed to wait an extra four years after the IOC made guarantees on funding.

The Paris Games, which had fallen short with bids for 2008 and 2012, will mark 100 years since it was last held in the French capital.

Los Angeles hosted it in 1932 and 1984.

Paris and Los Angeles had been the only two candidates for the 2024 Games after Hamburg, Rome and Budapest withdrew from the race.

The IOC voted in June to award the 2028 Games at the same time as 2024.

The Californian city wanted the earlier Games because of its readiness to host while Paris said its prospective site for the Games would not be available for redevelopment after 2024.

IOC President Thomas Bach said the votes for both cities were “unanimous”.

Paris – famous landmarks

Paris’ bid team made liberal use of the city’s most famous landmark, incorporating a stylised version of the Eiffel Tower in their logo.

When the action starts it will be the backdrop for the triathlon, marathon and open-water swimming, reports the BBC.

The beach volleyball will take place in nearby Champs de Mars, while the road cycling will finish on the Champs-Elysees, which also hosts the final stage of the Tour de France.

The athletics will take place at the Stade de France, which staged football’s 1998 World Cup final and Euro 2016 final, while the gardens of former royal palace Versailles will host the equestrian events – eventing, showjumping and dressage.

Los Angeles – familiar venue

Los Angeles’ bid said it was about “what we have, not what we’re going to build”.

The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, which hosted athletics at the 1932 and 1984 Games, is to fulfil the same role in 2028.

Organisers plan to use Major League Soccer side LA Galaxy’s StarHub Center for rugby and modern pentathlon events, while making use of Santa Monica beach for volleyball.

Two significant elements are yet to be constructed, however – baseball ground Dedeaux Field will be converted into an open-air venue for swimming and diving.

And new MLS side Los Angeles Football Club are still building the 22,000-seater stadium that will host football matches.

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Eagles’ll prove FIFA wrong – Rohr

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Super Eagles Manager Gernot Rohr has said Nigeria will prove FIFA by emerging from Grop D of the World Cup despite being rated lowest in that section. Nigeria slipped in the current FIFA rankings; the Eagles are rated 56th in the world far behind Argentina, Croatia and even Iceland. Rohr is unfazed by the continuous tumbling of his team on FIFA rankings, saying the lads will prove their mettle when the tournament takes the centre stage in June.

“Everybody knows that FIFA is a respectable organization; they also know that we are ranked the lowest in our group but we want to prove to everyone what we can do by getting out of the group. We want go all the way in the competition and I trust my players they will do that,” the coach said at the venue of the NFF awards on Monday.

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Echiejile seeks to cement Eagles’ position

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Super Eagles’ left-back Elderson Echiejile is happy to return to the pitch after an injury spell in the past few months made him miss games for the country, AOIFootball.com reports.

The former AS Monaco player, who joined Belgium’s second division side Cercle Brugge on loan from Turkey’s Sivaspor on the final day of the winter transfer window, told AOIFootball.com exclusively that he was happy to be back and relished the opportunity to wear the Eagles’ jersey against Poland and Serbia next month. “It feels nice to be back after injury setbacks. I missed the games against Algeria and Argentina, but I’m back now and I want to always give my best for the country.

“The games against Poland and Serbia will be key to our World Cup preparations and I believe this kind of games can help us prepare well ahead of the tournament proper in June,” Echiejile said.

Echiejile further expressed confidence in cementing his left-back role, saying the competition is good for the team and will make the coaches select the best for the World Cup.

“Currently there are three or maybe four left-backs in the team; should I be scared? I don’t think so because this competition for places is a statement that the national team is returning to his glory days,” Echiejile concluded.

Meanwhile, the Super Eagles’ defender made his debut for second division side Cercle Brugge in a league game at the weekend. He featured for the entire duration of the encounter against St. Gilloise. He was booked for a foul in the 89th minute of the game.

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Supporters’ Club plans to take 20 lucky fans to Russia 2018

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National chairman of Nigeria Football Supporters Club, Reverend Samuel Ikpea, has confirmed plans to take 20 lucky Nigerian fans to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia through a planned raffle draw in Lagos on April 29.

Ikpea explained that following a partnership with Telecom Youth Games, 20 fans who would be picked at the April 29 draw would be sponsored to and fro Russia- including feeding, accommodation and transport “All Nigerians wishing to go to Russia to support the Super Eagles should do is to buy World Cup raffle draw tickets at the National Stadium, Lagos, State Football Association Secretariats nation wide for N200 only.

Once you are lucky to have your ticket picked at the draw, you are qualified for full sponsorship to and fro Russia,” concluded Ikpea. Meanwhile, the chairman has expressed shock over the death of Kano Pillars star, Chinedu Udoji in an auto crash. Udoji, a veteran of the league died on Sunday and Ikpea has described the sudden demise as a huge loss to Nigerian football. “On behalf of Nigeria Football Supporters Club, I sympathise with family of Udoji and Kano Pillars.

It’s indeed a painful death of a promising player. He was such a dedicated player from when he was captain of Enyimba of Aba before moving to Kano Pillars. “We at the Supporters Club pray God to give the Udoji Family, Kano Pillars F.C and the football fraternity the fortitude to bear the huge loss,” Ikpea said.

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