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N’golo Kante, Jorginho lead nominations for UEFA Player of the Year Awards

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UEFA has confirmed the nominees for the Men’s Player of the Year award, with Chelsea duo Jorginho and N’Golo Kante having been joined by Manchester City star Kevin De Bruyne on the list.

Barcelona trio Jennifer Hermoso, Lieke Martens and Alexia Putellas have all been nominated for the UEFA Women’s Player of the Year, while Pep Guardiola, Thomas Tuchel and Roberto Mancini are the three Coach of the Year nominees.

As for the Women’s Coach of the Year, Lluis Cortes, Peter Gerhardsson and Emma Hayes are all in the running for the award. The winners will be revealed at the 2021-22 Champions League group-stage draw ceremony on August 26.

Who are the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year nominees?

Chelsea duo Jorginho and Kante are two of the nominees for the UEFA award after enjoying a stellar 2020-21 campaign that saw the Premier League club lift the Champions League.

Both players started the Champions League final win over Manchester City, with Kai Havertz’s first-half strike proving the difference between the two sides in Portugal.

Tuchel’s side also secured qualification for Europe’s premier club competition for the 2021-22 campaign courtesy of their fourth-placed finish in the table, while they would also lift the UEFA Super Cup by beating Villarreal.

In what was a remarkable year individually for Jorginho, the 29-year-old would also go on to win the European Championship with Italy.

The third nominee for the men’s award is Manchester City midfielder De Bruyne.

Despite a season disrupted by injury, De Bruyne played a pivotal role to help City win the Premier League title, with his exploits seeing him awarded the PFA Player of the Year award for the second season in a row.

Who are the UEFA Women’s Player of the Year nominees?

The Women’s list of nominees is comprised solely of Barcelona players.

Hermoso, Martens and Putellas have all been recognised during a season that saw Barca Femeni storm to a 4-0 win over Chelsea in the Women’s Champions League final.

The trio all started that match in Gothenburg, with Putellas getting on the scoresheet, while they also won the Women’s Primera Division title and the Copa del Reina, where they beat Levante in the final.

Who are the UEFA Coach of the Year nominees?

As for the Men’s Coach of the Year, Tuchel, following his exploits with Chelsea after replacing Frank Lampard, is up for the award along with Manchester City boss Guardiola.

Mancini, meanwhile, helped deliver European Championship glory for Italy and he completes the three-man shortlist.

The Women’s Coach of the Year nominees include, as expected, former Barcelona head coach Cortes after he steered the Catalans to a treble-winning 2020-21 season prior to resigning from the role.

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Qualification for 2022 World Cup will earn Black Stars boss Milovan Rajevac extra $300,000

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Milovan Rajevac will earn $300,000 if he guides the Black Stars to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, the Ghana Football Association (GFA) has revealed.

Rajevac’s appointment as the new head coach of the men’s national team was confirmed by the GFA at a press conference on Friday.

Aside from his $30,000 monthly salary, Rajevac is in line to make an extra $300,000 should the Black Stars make it to Qatar 2022.

Currently, the side is second in their qualifying group, one point behind South Africa whom they lost to in CK Akonnor’s final match as head coach.

Only the team that finishes top of the group will make it through to the final round of qualifiers.

Rajevac does have a massive financial incentive to pull it off, however with the GFA confirming the terms of his contract at today’s press conference.

This, of course, means Rajevac will get $600,000 if the Black Stars qualify for the 2022 World Cup and win the AFCON, with the Serbian also guaranteed a $300,000 payday if his side ends the nation’s 40-year drought.

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Usyk shocks Joshua to claim world heavyweight titles

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Oleksandr Usyk is the new unified heavyweight world champion after dethroning Anthony Joshua with an incredible performance in London.

The Ukrainian put on a masterclass in front of 65,000 fans inside Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, outclassing Joshua over 12 rounds, and hurting the defending champion on numerous occasions.

The scorecards – 117-112, 116-112, 115-113 – were all for Usyk and there was a mere shrug of the shoulders from Joshua as the second defeat of his professional career was confirmed.

Having seen a fight with fellow Briton Tyson Fury collapse last summer, Joshua opted to face his WBO mandatory challenger and former undisputed cruiserweight champion Usyk instead.

It appeared the easier fight for Joshua, but boxing’s triumphant return to stadium nights was soured for the home crowd by a truly exceptional performance from the challenger.

Aside from the Briton’s long-term career prospects, Joshua versus Fury now appears to be dead.

Fury fights Deontay Wilder next month in Las Vegas and every fight fan’s greatest fear has been realised after the unification bout collapsed last summer.

For a start, Joshua will have to win his rematch with Usyk which, after Saturday night’s meeting, appears near impossible.

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Ghana is my second home – Milovan Rajevac

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New Black Stars head coach Milovan Rajevac has called Ghana his second home in his unveiling press conference.

Speaking to the gathered media on Friday 24th September, the veteran coach said:

“I was happy to get this opportunity (to return) because I feel like this country is like my second home. I had a great experience here”

He then explained that part of what made the Ghana job so enjoyable was that Ghanaians were passionate about football and it was a rare quality

“I know how much Ghanaians like football, they are passionate. It is not something I experienced elsewhere”

Coach Milo returns to the Black Stars job 11 years after he first left. Despite not winning a trophy, he is considered one of the most successful coaches in Ghana’s history due to Ghana’s memorable run in the 2010 World Cup.

The 67 year old coach has been handed a one-year deal with an option for a further year if he leads the Black Stars to the World Cup in 2022.

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