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EPL: Chelsea refuse to give shirt numbers to three players

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Chelsea have decided not to give shirt numbers to at least three members of their first-team squad.

The players are Romelu Lukaku, Hakim Ziyech, and Callum Hudson-Odoi.

The trio is expected to leave Stamford Bridge for new clubs this summer.

This was confirmed by football transfer expert Fabrizio Romano.

Romano tweeted on Tuesday: “No official shirt number for Hakim Ziyech, Romelu Lukaku, and Callum Hudson-Odoi.

“Chelsea expect all of them to leave the club in the next [few] weeks.”

Lukaku is in talks with Juventus, while Hudson-Odoi could sign for Fulham. Ziyech’s future is in limbo after his move to Saudi Arabia fell through.

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Borussia Dortmund appoint Nuri Sahin new manager

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The former BVB player himself joined the coaching staff earlier this year and will now lead the team through June 2027.

A late Friday statement from the club’s website reveal this.

Nuri Sahin, 35, was appointed following discussions between BVB Managing Director for Sport Lars Ricken, Sporting Director Sebastian Kehl and Nuri Sahin today (Friday).

The club’s new head coach has signed a 3-year contract, and he succeeds Edin Terzic (41), who requested to be released from his contract at BVB.

Sahin said, “It is a great honour for me to be head coach of Borussia Dortmund.

“I would like to thank everyone in the club’s senior management team for the faith they have shown in me, and I am hugely looking forward to my new role at BVB.

“From day one we will do everything we can and work with energy and passion to make this club as successful as possible.”

According to the statement, Managing Director, Lars Ricken, said: “We are delighted to appoint a coach who represents the younger generation in Nuri Sahin.

“He has worked very hard in recent years to prepare for a career as a coach, and he will show great dedication in his new position and help the team progress. As former players, we will work closely together and we have great ambitions.

“Nuri knows the club and its staff, and BVB is in his DNA as a player and as an assistant coach. We have no doubt that Nuri is the right head coach for us.”

Nuri Sahin played 274 competitive games for Borussia Dortmund, scoring 26 goals. With BVB he won the Bundesliga in 2011 and the DFB Cup in 2017.

From 2021 to 2023 he managed Turkish Süper Lig side Antalyaspor, and in January 2024 he returned to BVB as assistant coach.

The club will announce further details about the coaching staff around Nuri Sahin in due course.

Rumours had it that Terzic had a clash with captain, Mat Hummels about the June 1 Champions League final tactics which Dortmund lost to Real Madrid.

However, Hummels, just a day after, on Friday, also confirmed his exit from the club.

BVB Sporting Director Sebastian Kehl said, “Nuri Sahin helped us reach the final of the UEFA Champions League last season.

“He has the experience here as a player and assistant coach to know how BVB works – and above all he knows how to be successful.

“With his natural authority and expertise he has a good relationship with our team, and he knows what we need to work on collectively. Nuri has our full confidence and our full support.”

Meanwhile, a post on Sahin’s appointment on the club’s TikTok handle on Saturday featured the new manager’s humble beginning as a ball boy who now rose in ranks over the years to be the coach.

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Transfer: Galatasaray offer Ndidi three-year contract

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Turkish Super Lig champions, Galatasaray have stepped up their bid to sign Leicester City star, Wilfred Ndidi.

Ndidi will become a free agent at the end of the month.

Leicester City are still in talks with the midfielder over a new contract.

According to transfer expert, Nicolo Schira, Galatasaray have offered Ndidi a three-year contract with the option of another year.

The Nigeria international joined Leicester City in 2017.

He registered 17 goals and 17 assists in 273 appearances across all competitions for the Foxes.

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Super Falcons ranked 1st in Africa, 38 in the world

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Nigeria’s Super Falcons are currently ranked 38 in the world and first in Africa, according to the latest FIFA/Coca Cola Women’s World rankings released on Friday.

Nearly three months have gone by since the rankings was last published, and no fewer than 154 international football matches have been played during that timeframe.

According to FIFA, the qualifying fixtures for the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament, Paris 2024 held in Africa, and the UEFA Women’s EURO 2025 qualifiers in Europe impacted on the rankings.

“These intense encounters in addition to a large number of friendly fixtures, resulted in several changes to the standings, including an adjustment to the top three”, the statement said.

Spain is top, reigning supreme for another edition, but the pressure is mounting. France surges into second place, overtaking a slipping England who now sits at third.

Big movers also include Montenegro (up 4 to 85th) and El Salvador (up 7 to 90th) making impressive strides within the top 100.

Belarus (up 2 to 55th) claims the biggest points gain (a whopping 31.91!), while North Macedonia (up a staggering 12 to 123rd) celebrates the most significant ranking jump after dominant wins.

Other than the Macedonians, five other national teams hit their highest-ever points totals: Spain, Zambia, Puerto Rico, El Salvador, and Congo DR.

In fact, Zambia (64th, up 1) has two reasons to celebrate, as they have also attained their best-ever placing in a table that is likely to change further in the next few months.

Meanwhile, other African representatives, South Africa and Morocco are ranked 51 and 59 in the world, placing second and third in Africa respectively.

The next FIFA rankings will be published on Aug. 16.

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