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Nuno Tavares completes his season long move to Marseille
(Football news) Arsenal second choice left-back Nuno Tavares has completed a season-long loan to Marseille. According to reports it has been understood that the Ligue 1 side do not have an option to buy. Arsenal have already signed Oleksandr Zinchenko from Manchester City for a £30million fee earlier this month, which meant that Tavares fell down the pecking order. Last season he made 28 appearances across all competitions in 2021-22, starting the majority of his games towards the end of the season, when Kieran Tierney was injured.
Tavares is a Portugal Under-21 international who arrived from Benfica for around £8m in July 2021. Arsenal have a history of loaning several players to Marseille in recent years, including centre-back William Saliba, who returned to north London this summer and midfielder Matteo Guendouzi, who made his move to France permanent last month.The 22-year scored once and assisted twice. The Portuguese scored on his first appearance for the Gunners, netting in the pre-season friendly against Rangers in July 2021. Nuno’s first competitive Arsenal goal came in a 3-1 Premier League home win against Manchester United back in April.
Arsenal fans will be optimistic Tavares can upset those odds and hopefully thrive at the Stade Vélodrome next season as Marseille have proven their expertise in the field of youth development, as William Saliba has become a French international with his performances at Marseille. The French centre-half was already a star in the making when he returned to Ligue 1 last season, but he desperately needed regular first-team action to further his progress and he gained the experience with Jorge Sampaoli in defence, where a series of magnificent displays moulded him into quite a player..
A club statement said: “Everyone at Arsenal wishes Nuno all the best this coming season with Marseille.”
Also read: Real Madrid gear up for final preseason game against Juventus
FIFA 23 to feature Women’s Super League teams for the first time ever
(Football news) FIFA 23 will feature women’s teams for the first time in the history of the series. The game will launch with the FA Women’s Super League and the French Division 1 Féminine but Electronic Arts has reiterated that they plan on expanding the roster in the future. EA also revealed on Tuesday that Sam Kerr will feature on their global cover for the FIFA 23 Ultimate Edition, the Chelsea star becoming the first woman to do so in the franchise’s history. If that’s not all, FIFA 23 will feature the 2022 Men’s World Cup in Qatar as well as the 2023 Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
Electronic Arts first featured women’s football in FIFA 16 after a successful 2015 Women’s World Cup. The game featured only a few international sides which increased to a total of 22 in FIFA 22 and the game also let players create a female player for the game’s Pro Clubs mode for the first time. However, the games received criticism that the inclusion of women’s football was merely a public endeavor and the franchise wasn’t actively focusing on promoting the sport. In a statement released by Matt Lafreniere, producer of FIFA 23, he said “We’re committed to building an equitable experience and aspire to help grow women’s football”. EA have confirmed that female players have been motion captured to ensure authentic animation and the matches will feature the game’s Hypermotion 2 technology to create realistic movements on the fly.
Electronic Arts are not the only publication who have shifted their attention to the women’s game as 2K Games have also announced a new installment of its NBA 2K sim series, NBA2k23 WNBA Edition which will focus on female basketball players. Sports Interactive is another publication that will not feature women’s teams in their popular Football Manager series. As for FIFA, it’s going to be the end of an era for the iconic franchise as the publisher will be losing their license to use the football governing body’s name due to disagreements over costs and exclusivity. Electronic Arts will now be renaming their future football games EA Sports FC from 2023.
Sam Kerr becomes first woman to be featured on FIFA's global game cover
(Football news) Australian footballer Sam Kerr is set to become the first woman to grace the global FIFA game cover. FIFA 23’s Ultimate Edition will feature Sam Kerr alongside Kylian Mbappe and the two players were revealed in a tweet by EA which said “Two phenomenal forces up front. One ultimate strike partnership." While Mbappe has featured on FIFA’s cover three times already, the presence of Sam Kerr on the cover is a big statement by Electronic Arts as women’s football continues to gain popularity around the world.
While Kerr will be the first woman to grace FIFA’s global cover, it’s not the first time the game has featured women on its cover. Matildas star Steph Catley featured alongside Lionel Messi in the Australian version of FIFA 16 while US women’s national team striker Alex Morgan and international football's all-time top scorer Christine Sinclair have previously featured on the US and Canada covers. However, Kerr will be making history as no woman has featured on the FIFA global cover in the past and will be the only footballer featured in the Australian version of FIFA 23.
The 28 year old led Chelsea to their second consecutive Women’s Super League title as well as the FA Cup in the 2021/22 season. Kerr also won the Golden Boot for the second consecutive season and was named the English players' association player of the year. She is also considered as one of the favourites to win her first Ballon d'Or and FIFA Player of the Year awards. Interestingly, while Kerr’s inclusion on the global cover is EA’s acknowledgement of the growing popularity of women’s football, the game itself does not include women's leagues or women players in Career Mode.
Twelve international women’s teams including Australia were first introduced in FIFA 2016 after the 2015 Women’s World Cup while former England footballer Alex Scott was included in the online social Pro Clubs mode in the '22 edition as an English speaking woman broadcaster. With Electronic Arts and FIFA ending their longstanding association, EA Sports FC is expected to expand into the women’s game with marketing material featuring Olympique Lyonnais and Manchester City already being showcased.
The Antetokounmpo family biopic is a story about following your dreams
(Basketball news) Debuting on Disney + Hotstar, “Rise” isn’t just a basketball story. It’s the journey of the Antetokounmpo family from the streets of Nigeria to Turkey and then to Greece. It highlights the struggles of being a black immigrant in Western Europe as they fight for a better life in greener pastures. While it’s easy to think it's a Giannis Antetokounmpo biopic, it’s not, rather, it’s a story about belonging and following your dreams. Whether it’s the dream of Vera and Charles Adetokunbo for giving their children a better life or the dream of their four children - Thanasis, Giannis, Kostas and Alex in their quest of finding a place to belong, even in a country that won’t recognize them as one of their own.
The family’s original surname “Adetokunbo”, which means “the king has returned from across the seas” is condescendingly massacred by the Greek system and changed to Antetokounmpo. While the parents work hard to get residency documentation, Thanasis and Giannis get introduced to basketball and go from learning the basics such as dribbling to becoming one of the best players in the team. The movie shows Thanasis to be the better of the two while Giannis plays catch-up, and the brothers quickly gain the attention of scouts and agents from the country.
With talk of a move to a different team, the glaring issue of having no paperwork detracts suitors who don’t want to risk the wrath of the Greek government. Anti-immigration sentiments are at an all time high with the influx of refugees in Greece and the Antetokounmpo family struggles with remaining under the radar from the authorities while they try to survive in the city. Uche Agada, the actor who portrays Giannis Antetokounmpo had a rather flat portrayal of the NBA star which is not in line with the real Giannis’ true personality. However, the makers of the film have largely focused on the ‘inspiration’ in the story rather than the nuances in the acting, especially from the brothers.
The Antetokounmpo parents, namely the mother who is played by Yetide Badaki and the father Dayo Okeniyi have done an excellent job. Okeniyi, who plays Charles Adetokunbo has an interesting dynamic of a supporting father who lives in constant fear of his family being caught by the authorities and the resentment he still holds for not being able to make it as a professional footballer. The film, being a Disney + movie, lacks the big budget but is well made for what it sets out to do, inspire the audience with a captivating story. Towards the end, it captures not just the hearts but also the emotions of the audience when the Antetokounmpo family’s fate is hanging in the balance and Giannis is finally picked by the Milwaukee Bucks. And as they say, the rest is history..
39 years since India's trend setting Cricket World Cup win at Lords
(Cricket news) It's been 39 years since Kapil Dev and company shocked the World by winning the 1983 World Cup. The World Cup win not only put India on the world cricket map but also inspired millions of kids to play cricket for the country. Cricket is a religion in India and the World Cup win in 1983 was the beginning of all that. The victory was a very big upset as India twice defeated West Indies who had won the last two World Cups. All these years later, the win in 1983 is still considered the biggest triumph in Indian cricket history. Majority of the players in that squad became icons of Indian cricket.
The final in itself was an incredible win for India. The Windies having won the toss elected to bowl first. India could only manage 183 runs in the first innings. Kris Srikkanth with his 57 ball 38 was the highest scorer in the Indian team. Andy Roberts picked up 3 wickets while Larry Gomes, Malcolm Marshall and Michael Holding got two scalps each. Joel Garner also chipped in with one wicket. The Indian innings ended in 54.3 overs itself. The West Indies with their incredible batting line-up was expected to comfortably chase down the target but the Indian bowlers had different plans.
West Indies were bowled out for inside 52 overs for 140 runs. Viv Richards was the only batter who showed some fight as he scored 33 off 28 balls. Mohinder Amarnath and Madan Lal picked up 3 wickets each while Balwinder Singh Sandhu got two scalps. Kapil Dev and Roger Binny also got a wicket each. Amarnath was awarded the man of the match for his performance. India lifted the World Cup trophy which made cricket what it is in the country today. India had to wait 28 years and some painful exits to win the next World Cup.
Also read: India's ideal playing XI for the two T20Is against Ireland
Rishabh Pant's first of many series as Indian captain
(Cricket news) Rishabh Pant captained India for the first time in the T20I series against Sri Lanka. It was definitely the first of many for the 24-year-old Pant. India were 2-0 down in the series but managed to comeback and make it 2-2. The last match was called off due to rain and the trophy was shared. Pant received his fair share of criticism after the first two losses but then handled it well for the next two wins. He is somewhat short of runs but his batting ability will never be a concern. Two years ago no one would've believed that Rishabh Pant would go on to captain India.
After an underwhelming IPL 2020 campaign, Pant was dropped from the ODI and T20I squad for the Australian tour. Things became worse when despite Pant having a good Test record in Australia, Wriddhiman Saha was selected as the wicket-keeper in the first Test. India ended up losing the Test match after getting bowled out for 36 in the 2nd innings. Rishabh Pant was called back for the 2nd Test and got good starts but nothing too impressive. In the 3rd Test match at Sydney, Pant played an incredible knock of 97 despite having an injured right arm. The knock helped India secure a gritty draw to keep the series level. In the series decider at the Gabba the keeper-batter scored an unbeaten 91 to lead India to a legendary series win.
Things changed from there as he was called back into the ODI and T20I squad. He was then named the captain of Delhi Capitals after Shreyas Iyer's injury. Pant has been playing consistently over the past two years and has been groomed as a leader. His 1st series as Indian captain was far from perfect but he will have plenty of opportunities in the future. These next 6 months or so are going to be very crucial for Pant. His performances with the bat still need improvement especially in certain difficult situations. Pant is now preparing for the Test match in England where he is the undisputed first choice wicket keeper.
Also read: India women's ideal playing XI for the T20Is against Sri Lanka