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Who is Francis Afriyie?



Rollers signs Ghanaian striker

On Tuesday afternoon, Botswana Premier League Defending Champions Township Rollers announced the signing of Ghanaian striker Francis Afriyie from the embattled Kenyan side Gor Mahia.

The financially strapped Kenyan League Champions could not hold on to their prized asset after losing their technical sponsor Sportpesa in August 2019.

Popa Popa acted swiftly and snapped up the highly rated lanky striker who had already rattled the net six times in 11 matches.

Standing at an imposing 1.85m, Afriyie who joined Mahia at the start of the season has been likened to former Manchester City and Togo international Emmanuel Adebayor.

The towering goal poacher joined Serbian side FK Vojvodina during the 2016/17 season, but left a year later after failing to make a single appearance in the Serbian Super League.

He later joined Mexican side Murciélagos who were unfortunately relegated at the end of the season due to financial issues, forcing the striker to make his back to Africa.

The hard to please Rollers fans will be hoping the Ghanaian will solve their nagging goal scoring challenge.

It is this inconsistency in front of goal that is believed to have cost former coach Tomas Trucha his job.

The Czech Republican was fired last week, and Zacharia Muzadzi elevated to the caretaker coach position.

The Blues are currently forth on the log tied on 28 points with Jwaneng Galaxy who have a superior goal difference.

On Sunday they take on a relegation threatened Notwane at the national stadium.

Toronto are sitting on position 14 with just 10 points and will be looking to avenge the 2-1 first round loss against their city rivals.

This will be Muzadzi’s first test as the interim Head Coach. The tactician told Voice Sport that he expects Notwane to put on a fierce battle.

“Even when our opponents are not doing well, they always up their game when they play against us, so I expect a very tough match,” he said.

Muzadzi said his players are not used to being in this position at this time of the season.

“It’s new to them but with the intense training we started on Saturday, I believe we’ll reclaim our spot,” he said.

The coach said three of his players Segolame Boy, Maano Ditshupo and Jackson Lesole are still nursing their injuries and won’t be available on Saturday.

Afriyie who’s still sorting out his papers will also be watching from the stands.

Meanwhile, just across the road and upbeat Notwane Public Relations Director Ace Orapeleng said all their players reported for training on Monday and are ready for the game.

“Playing Rollers is a motivation on its own and every player want to be in the starting 11 so the morale is high in the camp,” he said.

“This is our home game and I urge our supporters to come in large numbers to boost the boys’ morale,” pleaded Orapeleng.

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BFA welcomes COVID-19 stipend



BFA welcomes COVID-19 stipend

On Monday Minister of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development (MYSC), Tumiso Rakgare revealed the government’s plan to help the elite and second-tier leagues with player’s salary subsidies respectively.

Minister Rakgare stated that 25 players of all the 16 teams in the BTC premiership will be paid P2, 500 whilst first division players will each receive P1, 500 for the months of April. May and June.

Teams were expected to submit the required documentation for verification and due processes this week.

The Minister said it was inevitable for government to intervene as sports was the first discipline to be affected by Covid-19, citing the Mares Under 17 trip to Morocco that never materialized.

The Mares were scheduled to face their Moroccan counterparts for a return leg of the FIFA World Cup qualifier in March.

He further revealed that the subsidy is part of the P70 million set aside by the ministry to cushion the impact of Covid-19.

BFA welcomes COVID-19 stipend

“The subsidy is only for Batswana players, technical and office staff and monies will be directly deposited to player’s bank accounts to avoid situations where teams might use such funds for their daily expenses,” he said.

He further revealed that referees will be assisted through the FIFA relief fund as agreed with BFA.

Letshwiti hailed the intervention, which he said will cushion the effects of the pandemic on the socio- economic lifestyles of players and technical members involved in running of the clubs.

“This will also go a long way in giving club leaders a reprieve during this challenging time,” he said.

The BFA President said club leaders and owners are custodians of football events and this financial assistance is critical in sustaining players and eventually the clubs they represent.

“The BFA is truly humbled by this noble gesture of unity. We have since availed P40,000 to BPL clubs as a reprieve to help clubs mitigate these devastating consequences,” he saud.

He further said, together with their partners, including government, they continue to discuss sustainable means to get football out of the woods.

“We truly are encouraged by the posture adopted by Honorable Minister Rakgare in finding the most reasonable and practical solution to the problems football faces in the country,” Letshwiti said.

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Teranga lions’ world cup legend retires



Teranga lions’ world cup legend retires

Montpellier’s veteran former Senegal attacker Souleymane Camara has retired after 13 seasons with the side, club president Laurent Nicollin said on Monday.

Camara, 37, played a record 423 times for the outfit where he won the Ligue 1 title in 2012 and made the last of his 35 international appearances in the same year.

“We spoke on Friday and the decision was taken,” Nicollin told A French newspaper.

“He’s now thinking about what he’ll do next. We’ve given him some time to know what he wants to do, if he wants to coach here. We’ve left the door open,” he added.

Camara started his career with Monaco in 2001 before a loan spell at Guingamp and joining Nice four years later.

He was part of the Senegal squad which beat the then holders France en route to the historic 2002 World Cup quarter-finals.

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