A Marseille supporter invited to take part in the clubs ceremonial kick-off at the Stade Veledome made sure he got the most out of his 15 minutes if fame. Kamel Zaroual was asked to participate in the traditional ceremony as a reward for his fundraising efforts for local children. Gifted with this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, Mr Zaroual could not resist the chance to score a goal. Having performed the kick-off the Marseille man ran the length of the pitch before firing a shot past Toulouse goalkeeper Alban Lafont, much to the delight of the Marseille faithful and indeed himself. The Marseille super fan cycled 2000km for the pleasure of scoring the opening goal of the game (technically speaking). Goal of the season award, perhaps?
Hearts Chief Executive Ann Budge has promised to stick by her striker, Northern Irish international Kyle Lafferty who this week admitted he is living with a gambling addiction. Lafferty revealed he has lost thousands of pounds, and was even fined £23,000 by the English FA last summer after breaking betting rules while on the books at Norwich City. The Hearts man has spent time at the Sporting Chance Clinic following the FA’s decision to issue a fine. Budge said in a statement on Wednesday morning, ‘I would like to record our total support for Kyle Lafferty as he moves forward to deal with his acknowledged addiction to gambling. Kyle took the brave step of coming to the club and asking for help. No one should underestimate how difficult that decision was for him and his family.’
Swindon Town fans found a new way to take the mickey out of their opposition by dressing as pigs at the slaughter as they travelled to Forrest green, who only sell vegan food at their ground. TOP BANTER THERE.
Gary Woods will miss tonight’s home clash with Rangers after suffering a lacerated kidney. The Accies shot stopper picked up the injury during last Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at the hands of St Johnstone. Accies boss, Martin Canning will also have to do without defender George Sarris, who is expected to be out for six weeks following a knee operation. Midfielder Darian MacKinnon has also been ruled out of Friday night’s clash after he was shown a red card in last Saturday’s SPFL fixture with the Saints. Grant Gillespie, Michael Devlin and David Templeton are also both out injured.
England midfielder Dele Alli has been banned for one international match following his middle-finger gesture during the World Cup qualifier against Slovakia.
Jim McIntyre has been sacked by Ross County seven games into the season. Here, at least he lasted longer than Frank de Boer.
Speaking of managers, Carlo Ancelotti has been sacked as boss of Bayern Munich. The decision comes after Bayern’s 3-0 defeat to PSG in their Champions’ League group stage match.
In more manager news, loon-ball Brother Pedro Caixinha has revealed that his childhood nickname was ‘elephant’ because of his ‘great memory’. Well, I’m sure he’ll remember Celtic’s dominance in years to come. He also drew comparisons between the unrest among his squad with a trip to Las Vegas. Reports from Wednesday revealed that Pedro made claims that himself and new recruits had not been made to feel welcome at their new club. When asked about the claims Caixinha said, ‘Have you ever been to Las Vegas? What happens in Las Vegas, stays in Las Vegas. I’m a confident guy. If things are coming out it’s because someone didn’t like the game that we play in Las Vegas, that’s all, so I am happy with that.’ I mean I don’t know about Vegas, but I’m pretty sure the players didn’t like the game that you played at Ibrox on Saturday (once again being outclassed by your greatest rivals), or indeed the 3-2 defeat to Hibs or the 2-2 draw with Thistle, or the early European exit against Progres Nierderkorn. Oh well, keep coming away with mad chat – it’s funny and fills up space on my blog!
On that note, Kenny Miller has been dropped from the Rangers squad to face Accies in tonight’s Scottish Premiership clash.
From Afghanistan to Manchester City, Nadia Nadim has made a move from Portland Thorns to Manchester City in the Women’s Super League. Nadia fleed from war-torn Afghanistan at the age of 12 and made her way to Denmark via fake passports, traveling on the back of a lorry. She signed her first professional contract aged 18 with IK Slovbakken, was granted Danish citizenship in 2008 and now has 74 caps and 22 goals. Nadim scored two goals as she lead Denmark to the European Championship final.
Former Newcastle Chairman Freddy Shepherd has died at the age of 75. Shepherd was a pivotal figure in the club’s rise during the 90s, taking over as Chairman in 1997 and working as a director from 1992 he played a key role in appointing Kevin Keegan as manager and signing Alan Shearer from Blackburn Rovers, for a then world-record fee of £15m. He wasn’t always the most popular figure, and was pushed to resign in 1997/98 following a report by the News of the World in which he and fellow director Douglas Hall were recorded calling female football supporters “dogs”. The comments sparked outrage from supporters and fellow board members, who urged both men to resign, which they did in 1998.
ONES TO WATCH
Bravo Kamel, goal of the season: https://youtu.be/xHsYrowdxlo
Refugee footballer, Nadia Nadim: https://youtu.be/q8mvmFoYiKM