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Argentina Wins Incredible World Cup Final Match After Penalty Kicks Shootout

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Argentina Wins Incredible World Cup Final Match After Penalty Kicks Shootout

 Argentina won their third FIFA World Cup in an extraordinary final match on Sunday in Lusail as they beat France 4-2 on penalty kicks.

This was after Lionel Messi scored twice in a 3-3 draw and Kylian Mbappe grabbed a hat-trick to bring the holders back from 2-0 and 3-2 down.

It was an incredible night of drama, high emotion and fluctuating fortunes, delivering one of the all-time great finals to cap a wonderful tournament.

It was impressive as the competition’s two-star players delivered command performances on the biggest stage of all.

Argentina had looked to be cruising to a one-sided victory after Messi’s penalty kick and a brilliant goal by Angel Di Maria in the first half put them in total control.

But Mbappe converted an 80th-minute penalty kick and volleyed in a sublime equaliser a minute later to take the game to extra time.

Messi put Argentina ahead again but Mbappe levelled with another penalty kick.

The Frenchman thus became the second man to score a World Cup final hat-trick after England’s Geoff Hurst in 1966.

In the shootout, Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez saved Kingsley Coman’s effort and Aurelien Tchouameni fired wide.

That gave substitute full-back Gonzalo Montiel, who gave away the penalty kick for France’s third goal, the chance for the ultimate redemption.

He duly took this by calmly sending Hugo Lloris the wrong way.

It meant that after his record 26th World Cup match, at the fifth and final time of asking, the 35-year-old Messi claimed the trophy his talent and commitment to his country demanded.

It elevated him alongside Diego Maradona, Argentina’s first football god, who carried them to their emotional second triumph in 1986 following the first in 1978.

“I wanted to close my career with this, it was the one that was missing. So, I can no longer ask for anything else,” said Messi, who has played 172 times for his country.

“I was able to get the Copa America and now the World Cup that I had fought so hard for. I’ve got it at the end of my career.

“But I love football and I want to continue living a few more games being world champion.”

The victory seems all the more incredible coming a month after his team began the tournament by suffering statistically the biggest upset in World Cup history when they lost to Saudi Arabia.

“I cannot believe that we have suffered so much in a perfect game. Unbelievable, but this team responds to everything,” Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni said.

“I am proud of the work they did. With the blows we received today. I want to tell people to enjoy it, it’s a historic moment for our country.”

There was little hint of the drama to come as Argentina dominated the first hour.

They outran and outfought a flat French team who looked to have no chance of becoming the first to retain the title since Brazil 60 years ago.

They went ahead when the recalled Di Maria beat Ousmane Dembele and was tripped for a penalty kick which Messi slotted in after 23 minutes.

One of the best goals to grace a final came after 36 minutes when instinctive passing by Nahuel Molina, Messi, Julian Alvarez, and Alexis Mac Allister set up Di Maria to slide in the second.

France barely fired a shot in anger until the 80th minute when Nicolas Otamendi tripped Randal Kolo Muani and Mbappe, previously anonymous, expertly converted the penalty kick.

A minute later he swept in a brilliant equalising volley after combining cleverly with Marcus Thuram.

He stunned the massed Argentine fans watching their team concede two quick-fire goals for the third time in the tournament.

Argentina regrouped well, though, creating several chances, and regained the lead after a counter-attack.

That was when the tireless Lautaro Martinez smashed a shot that Hugo Lloris saved.

Messi pounced on the rebound with a rare right-footed finish, with technology confirming the ball had crossed the line.

The drama was not over, however, as Mbappe hammered a shot against Montiel’s arm to win a penalty kick in the 117th minute.

He calmly dispatched it for an amazing hat trick and a tournament-leading eighth goal.

Kolo Muani still had a wonderful chance to snatch it in stoppage time for France.

But he was brilliantly denied by the outstretched leg of Martinez when the winner of all late winners looked a certainty.

Mbappe and Messi both converted the opening spot-kicks of the shootout but they then had to stand back and let their teammates decide their destiny.

Argentina has now won six of its seven World Cup shootouts.

This includes the quarter-final against the Netherlands a week ago when they also blew a 2-0 lead in the same Lusail Stadium.

France, the only team to have scored three goals in a final and lost, has tasted defeat in three of five shootouts, two of those losses coming in finals.

“We came back from the brink. That’s what gives us so many regrets,” said France coach Didier Deschamps.

“We could have won it in the last minute (of extra time) but it was not meant to be.”

Two hours after the game, thousands of Argentina fans, many in Number 10 Messi shirts, remained in the stadium as the players and their families posed for pictures on the pitch.

They went for a joyous lap of honour, parading the golden trophy they last had their hands on 36 years ago.

– Reuters

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In Osogbo, Tinubu restates commitment to job creation, credit for business owners

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In Osogbo, Tinubu restates commitment to job creation, credit for business owners

…Carpets Governor Adeleke for poor governance***

All Progressives Congress Presidential Candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, took his message of Renewed Hope to Osun State on Thursday where he assured the people and party supporters of his commitment to create jobs for the unemployed and make credit available for business owners.

Speaking in Yoruba to a mammoth crowd of people who thronged the venue of the campaign rally at Freedom Park Osogbo, Tinubu said his administration would empower the people with the skill that will make them employable while ensuring that the youth will no longer spend years in university due to lecturers’ strike action, stating that his pledge to the people will remain a binding covenant.

“I make a social covenant with you today that the unemployed among you will get jobs. Those with no skill will be provided the relevant skill that would put food on their table. When we get to government, we will make soft loans available for market women and business owners.”

Taking a swipe at the current Peoples Democratic Party government of Governor Ademola Adeleke in Osun State for poor governance of the state, the APC presidential candidate charged the people that the APC administration will soon return to continue the good work.

“They were given a little opportunity to rule for some months and they started misbehaving, killing and creating unrest in Osun state.”

From his prepared speech which he didn’t get the time to read, Asiwaju Tinubu congratulated Alhaji Adegboyega Oyetola, who was declared winner by the governorship election petition tribunal.

He praised Oyetola’s tenacity, diligence, consistency and determination, which made him not give up until he got his stolen mandate back.

On his plans for Osun, Tinubu noted that the state, which is highly blessed with diverse resources, should be a destination for business and tourism across the country, promising to help achieve this if he becomes the president.

He said, “Osun is a beautiful state filled with virtuous, industrious and welcoming people. We will support Osun to become a manufacturing, industrial, agricultural and tourism paradise.

“You have fertile soil, abundant mineral resources, and a rich culture and history capable of attracting tourists from across the world.

“A vote for me is a vote to develop all parts of this state and this country. Rural areas will not be forgotten but will be developed to support more economic activities and create better lives for the people.

“At the same time, our growing urban population – you city boys – will enjoy decent jobs and a living wage.”

Tinubu urged the people of the Osun State not to be deceived by the empty promises of Peoples Democratic Party Candidate Atiku Abubakar and Labour Party Candidate Peter Obi, saying both have nothing to offer.

While he said Atiku was only interested in stealing the nation’s resources and pocketing them for himself and his cronies, Tinubu likened Obi to the unprofitable servant who buried his talents, saying while Obi was Anambra State governor, he failed to use the state’s resources to develop it, rather saving them for no purpose.

“None of the other major candidates in this election have the capacity, integrity, knowledge or determination necessary to do what must be done. Only I, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, am prepared and up to the task of leading this country, our cherished homeland, back toward its best destiny.

“Do not vote for the candidate of the poverty development party, Mr. Privatise, Atiku Abubakar. When, as the Vice President of this country, he had a chance to make a positive difference, he chose the lesser path.

“He chose to use his position to enrich himself, his family and his friends. He sold Nigeria’s most prized assets for a fraction of their value. In the name of privatisation, he stole from your future to enrich himself.

“Worse, he has learned nothing. He has gone everywhere telling the Nigerian people that he is coming back to finish the job. He has promised that this time he will not steal your prosperity.

“You should not believe him or his greedy co-conspirators. The nation does not need the return of its Privatiser-in-Chief. Reject him and his band of foul jesters. They have no serious plans for this country. They resort to cheap and vile antics because they have no substance and no solutions.

“Be equally wary of the false messiah, Mr. Stingy, Peter Obi. This man’s promises are bold and his boasts are plentiful. Yet, when he was given the responsibility to lead just one state, he was overwhelmed by it.

“He could only stash away the money he was supposed to be using to develop the state. All the people of Anambra could hope for was that whoever came next would have better ideas.

“A governor is not a banker, expected to hold fast to his customer’s deposit. Obi was expected to build good roads, schools and hospitals”, he said, emphasizing that Obi rather, saved the money.

In another development, the Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai has that Northern Governors we’re all solidly behind the APC Campaign.

“Let me assure you 100%, the entire Northern Governors of the APC are completely, wholeheartedly supporting the Next President Bola Tinubu…” stated Nasir El-Rufai, even as Gov. Masari says: “Give Me Names of Northern APC Governors Not Supporting Tinubu?”

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MAN Warns: Cash-strapping may lead to 25% Drop in Sale of locally-made goods

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MAN Warns: Cash-strapping may lead to 25% Drop in Sale of locally-made goods

 The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) on Friday in Lagos, warned that Cash-strapping may unwittingly lead, to a 25 percent drop, in the sale of locally-made goods.

The Director General, MAN, Mr. Segun Ajayi-Kadir, stated this, emphasizing the need for the CBN to intensify efforts at ensuring a seamless transition from old naira to new naira notes, as anything to the contrary would be inimical to manufacturing.

He said if the current hardships being experienced in accessing money persisted for the next three weeks, there would be a possible drop of 25 percent in monthly sales of made-in-Nigeria goods.

He noted that as purchases from the retail end, mostly transacted in cash dry up; there would be a sharp drop in wholesale purchases leading to a glut of unsold inventories in factories.

He added that the situation which was no good for manufacturing, for the government and for the ordinary citizen would lead to compounded crippling lack of patronage for the domestic manufacturer.

Ajayi-Kadir also stressed that the development would also deny government the revenue that would have accrued from consumption taxes and result in the disruption of the daily life and need of the average Nigerian.

“To be clear, there is no doubt that the currency redesign is desirable; there are socioeconomic and political imperatives for the change.

“It is a critical element of the CBN cashless economy policy that should have far-reaching positive results for the economy.

“However, the continued scarcity of the newly redesigned naira notes is quite worrisome.

“With our growth prospects heading further south, we can ill afford a downturn in our Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

“The negative impact it portends for local producers, the agricultural and distributive segments of our economy is huge.

“It may worsen the bashing our economy has received from both external and internal shocks in recent times,’’ he stressed.

Ajayi-Kadir cautioned that adequate measures should be put in place to ensure a smooth currency transition, particularly in the unbanked areas of Nigeria.

He charged the CBN and Bureaux de Changes to be most engaging at the highest level at this time.

According to him, there is a need for strategic communication and joint operations to ensure widespread and sustained availability and circulation of the redesigned naira notes.

“It is baffling to approach a bank only to be told that there are neither the old nor the new naira notes.

“We hope that the resumption of payment across the counter in the banks and the intensification of the CBN special cash swap arrangement in remote areas will yield positive results.

“I hope that what the country is experiencing is temporary pain and that government will do well to bring the hardship to an end immediately.

“We must make haste to ensure that the price to be paid for this otherwise laudable policy does not outpace the gains,’’ he also cautioned.

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Economy

Disdain Towards Nigerian Passport: My regret as Foreign Affairs Minister – Onyema

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Disdain Towards Nigerian Passport: My regret as Foreign Affairs Minister – OnyemaDisdain Towards Nigerian Passport: My regret as Foreign Affairs Minister – Onyema

…Shed tears, when he saw Nigerian girls forced into prostitution in Libya***

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema, says his regret as minister is the disdain with which Nigerians are being treated outside the shores of the country and upon siting their international passports.

The Minister disclosed this in Abuja at the 22nd edition of the President Muhammadu Buhari Administration Scorecard Series (2015-2023) organised to project the achievements of the government.

Onyema was responding to a comment by a journalist who expressed displeasure about how Nigerians travelling abroad were being subjected to harassment upon sitting on their green passports.

The Minister agreed with the position of the newsman and attributed the challenge to the desperation of many Nigerians who took desperate and illegal measures to travel out of the country.

“If there is one thing that I look back to with the greatest regrets in my seven and half years in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, it is the situation of Nigerians in foreign countries,” he said.

The minister gave some of the instances he had witnessed and had to wade in to rescue trapped victims in the middle of the desert.

“I went to Libya and I actually shed tears when we went to this camp where they were holding Nigerians.

“There is that whole issue of slavery and of course, all the exploitations that go with it and they told us that there were only a hundred or two hundred Nigerians there,”

“So, we went to the yard and it was one of the most touching things I ever experienced.

“We have all these young boys, 13, 14, 15 years old and they all came out, over a hundred of them and they all stood up to attention,” he narrated.

The minister continued: “As soon as they saw us, they started reciting the Nigerian national anthem and tears came to my eyes.

 “We were told that the girls were used as prostitutes at night.

“When we saw them, the girls told us there were more Nigerians and we insisted they should bring them out.

“Lo and behold, twenty minutes after, they brought out another set which was about 200 Nigerians.

“The President gave directives, that we should charter planes in order to get them out and we did.”

Onyema attributed the despicable situation to the push factor leading a lot of young Nigerians to take desperate and ridiculous risks through the deserts and the high seas.

He said when they even finally got to their so-called dream countries, they got involved in drugs and all sort of crimes which made it difficult for Nigeria’s passport to be respected.

“Those of us in government have to blame ourselves, particularly in the immigration and even in foreign affairs,” he said.

Onyema narrated another scenario where the U.S., Ambassador to Nigeria came to show him the list of Nigerians that were issued visas through Note Verbal to go to the U.S. but they never attended the events they were scheduled for, but absconded.

He said he was also shown the list of those who were not respecting their visa deadlines and requirements, including top Nigerians.

The minister said all the illegal acts and sharp practices contributed to the manner Nigerians were being treated with disdain abroad when they cited their passports.

“In order to reverse the situation and ensure Nigerian passport is given the due respect it deserves, we all have to work hard and behave ourselves.

“We are all suffering from this because we have people with genuine missions seeking to travel abroad looking for visas and they are denied.

“It is a challenge for each and every single one of us and it is impacting negatively on our country.

“We all have the responsibility to salvage the situation,” he said.

Onyema said President Buhari had never rested on his oars on the issue because whichever country he travelled to, he stressed to Nigerians in Diaspora to be good ambassadors of their country.

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