Sports Update

Weekend Sports Preview; Arsenal vs Manutd Takes Centerstage, WWE Royal Rumble Happening On Sunday, Crowd To Feature At Australian Open

Loads and loads of excitement as many sports events are lined up for this weekend. Let’s just dive right into it…

Australian Open Return Boosted With Big Crowds Approval

(Image Credit – foxsports.com.au)

Good news for Tennis fans because the Australian Open will now take place in front of a decent number of crowds. The Australian government has confirmed between 25,000 and 30,000 fans can attend the event each day. Wow! This is massive!

Minister for Sport, Martin Pakula announced on Saturday morning that the Melbourne Park event would welcome a crowd capacity of 30,000 per day for the tournament’s first eight days.

The Australian Open will start on February 8th and Tennis fans worldwide can’t wait.

The Road To Wrestlemania begins At WWE Royal Rumble 2021

(Image Credit – wwe.com)

Now why should a professional Wrestling event be significant to sports fans? Because it’s the WWE that showed the whole world Covid-19 can’t stop humanity from enjoying sports no matter what!

WWE events continued as scheduled for the 2020 year in an exclusive environment with virtual fans at their Performance Center at Azalea Park, Florida, till some pandemic respite came and other sports resumed in what they now call a Bubble. Thank you for keeping sports going, Vince!

Nearly every sports fan grew up loving the Royal Rumble! Many have memories of fractures as proof. The road to Wrestlemania begins this weekend on Sunday, Jan. 31 when WWE’s Royal Rumble takes place inside the ThunderDome at Tropicana Field in Tampa, Florida!!!

30 participants, 29 eliminations till there’s only one left! No thanks to Covid-19, the 34th edition of the Royal Rumble will be virtual but fans should expect no less adrenaline and excitement. Who are you tipping to win the Rumble going to headline Wrestlemania 37? Looks like the ‘monster amongst men’ Braun Strowman, from here…

Now to the King of Sports…Football

NPFL Excitement Gathers Momentum

(Image Credit – npfl.ng)

To the Nigerians local Football scene, it appears Covid-19 is a blessing in disguise. The Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL) in spite of being played in empty stadiums seems to be going on fine and on schedule. The players have been displaying their best artistry and goals have been aplenty. Every week has recorded an Away win and the league has been receiving decent reviews.

Match Day 7 of 38 takes place this weekend with the star match tipped to be Lobi Stars vs Abia Warriors. The match is the 3rd of the ultimatum Abia Warriors give to their manager, Imama Amapakabo (won Rangers International FC of Enugu their 1st NPFL title in 2016 since they last won in 1982) to save his job. He has drawn the previous 2 games of the all-important ultimatum.

You can catch up with NPFL excitement on TV or stream it on the internet on npfl.tv

Soweto Derby aka The Soweto Superbowl

(Image Credit – thesouthafrican.com)

We can’t leave the African continent without taking a quick stop at the South African League. This is how to package sporting events on the continent. But for Covid-19, the game would have been graced by 90,000 fans! The ever feisty Soweto Derby, takes the south African league by storm this weekend when Orlando Pirates is hosting city rivals, Kaizer Chiefs.

Nigeria’s Daniel Akpeyi will be in goal for Kaizer Chiefs and one can only hope Orlando Pirates continue fumbling in front of goal. The Chiefs stands a chance of getting a draw or they could snatch a victory over their eternal rivals.

Serie A – Atalanta vs Lazio

(Image Credit – bleacherreport.com)

While Cristiano Ronaldo might have gotten himself in hot water for breaking Covid-19 restrictions for a quick trip to attend his girlfriend’s 27th girlfriend (what won’t you do for love?), all eyes will be on the Atalanta BC vs SS Lazio clash.

5th-placed Atalanta eliminated 7th-placed Lazio from the Coppa Italia and the taste of the 3-2 defeat is still very much on the Roman side’s tongue. Expect another great match between these sides, the game should be awash in goals, nothing less than 3 goals. The resurgent Atalanta might come out tops in this one.

Bundesliga – Liepzig vs Bayer Leverkusen

sportsmole.co.uk

The Bundesliga star match this weekend is billed to take place between 2nd-placed RB Leipzig and 3rd-placed Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday (5.30pm). Both sides broke their fans (and that of punters’ of course) when they fell to disappointing defeats last weekend.

Leipzig have a slight edge because they have less injury worries but this is football, you never know where it breaks. This team will not be a barren affair, expect at least 2 goals, victory isn’t promised to any of the teams except the one that wants it the most.

Premier League – Arsenal vs Manchester United

(Image Credit – manchestereveningnews.co.uk)

This is the most unpredictable, wildest and most exciting Premier League title race since Leicester won in 2015. As much as 9 teams are in contention and no one pundit can stick their neck out on who is winning because of lack of consistency from the top teams. The star match will be between the two teams whose rivalry defined the Premier League between the late 1990s and 2000s – Arsenal and Manchester United.

Separated by 7 places and 10 points on the table, 9th-placed Arsenal go into the game off the back of a victory while 2nd-placed Manchester United got stunned by Sheffield United last time out. The match takes place at the Emirates where Arsenal are looking for their 3rd straight victory. You know what an away game means to Manchester United this season, don’t you?

United haven’t lost away this season, they either draw or win outright. Expect a tight affair, might even be a drab game. Arsenal would have to keep it tight at the back or United would pick their pockets and run away with it. Forget seeing more than 2 goals in the game. It’s too close to call.

Topic of the weekend…Where Would Tuchel Take Chelsea This Season?

(Image Credit – bbc.com/sport/football)

It’s futile asking if trigger-happy Chelsea owner, Roman Abramovic, fired Frank Lampard too early after an 18-month stay in charge. Hire-and-fire is Roman’s bread and butter, he loves doing it at a whim too. Lampard was The Blues’ 15th manager under Abramovic in his 15 years as Chelsea owner.

The question is how well do you see Chelsea performing under their new manager, the German, Thomas Tuchel, who himself was fired by French champions, PSG? Can Tuchel take Chelsea to somewhere better than where Lampard took them last season or it’s downhill from here? Let’s hear you…

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