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Dubai brings together world football’s biggest stars for friendly match as part of Dubai Fitness Challenge

(MENAFN – Emirates News Agency (WAM)) DUBAI, 21st November, 2020 (WAM) — Some of international football’s biggest stars came together in Dubai this weekend for a friendly match that took place on the pitches at Dubai Sports World, inside the air-conditioned halls of Dubai World Trade Centre as part of Dubai Fitness Challenge 30 x 30.

The match was organised jointly by Dubai Sports Council and Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing.

The players who took part in the match have won every possible title in the world of football, including the FIFA World Cup, UEFA European Championships, UEFA Champions League as well the Best Player of the Year awards.

The star-studded line-up included Portugal legend Luis Figo, the 2000 Ballon d’Or and 2001 FIFA World Player of the Year winner, who is considered one of the greatest to ever play the game; Carles Puyol, the former Spain captain and winner of the 2010 World Cup and the 2008 European Championships, and Dutch Clarence Seedorf, who is the only player to have won the UEFA Champions League with three different clubs – once with Ajax (1995), once with Real Madrid (1998) and twice with Milan (2003 and 2007).

Seedorf’s Dutch compatriot, Patrick Kluivert who holds the record for being the youngest player to score in the final of the main event on the European continent also took part in the match. He was only 18 years, 10 months and 23 days when he came off the bench to score Ajax’s 85th-minute winner against AC Milan in the 1995 Champions League final.

Frenchman Eric Abidal, the winner of two Champions League titles with Barcelona, also took the pitch alongside the likes of former Spain and Real Madrid star Michel Salgado, Italian goalkeeping legend Walter Zenga, Ghana’s Sulley Muntari and Frenchman Ibrahim Ba.

Mikael Silvestre, former France, Manchester United and Arsenal defender, was also present, cheering his former teammates and rivals from the sidelines as an injury prevented him from playing.

Saeed Hareb, Secretary-General of Dubai Sports Council, and Nasser Aman Al Rahma, Assistant Secretary-General of the Council, were present at the game along with Omran Al Jasmi, Manager of External Relations at the Council.

The stars thanked Dubai for providing them with this opportunity to come together and meets friends they had not met for a long time. The players who took part in the match all share a common love for Dubai and are either residents here or regular visitors. A number of them own properties and have plans to invest in Dubai’s growing sports sector.

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Alex Morgan: Tottenham star says she needs WSL game time to regain match fitness

World Cup winner Alex Morgan said regaining match fitness will take time after making her much-awaited debut for Tottenham in Saturday’s 1-1 Women’s Super League draw with Reading.

The United States forward came on with 20 minutes left but could not inspire Spurs to a first WSL win of the season.

Morgan joined in September, but has had to wait to return to action, having only given birth to a daughter in May.

“It feels good to be back for the first time in more than a year,” she said.

The 31-year-old told the Tottenham website:external-link “I am hoping to get much more time next match and the remaining matches to keep building.

“My fitness is getting back there. It will just take a little bit of time. I have to get minutes to get game fit.

“I felt like there was definitely a lot more sprints than in training. I will get used to it pretty quickly, but it was more of a transition game.

“I am looking forward to getting in to more of the game to settle in a little bit better.”

Tottenham remain in ninth place after two draws and four defeats so far. On Saturday, they went behind to a 13th-minute Brooke Chaplen goal but Ashleigh Neville equalised before half-time with a header from a corner.

“Going down 1-0 was disappointing, but getting the goal back from a set-piece was important,” added Morgan, who is a two-time World Cup winner and was part of the USA squad that took gold at the 2012 Olympics in London.

“I don’t think we had enough chances to put ourselves ahead but we will work on that.

“Obviously I am not too happy about the result, but I had to start to get some minutes and build from there so I am pretty happy this is a good starting point.”

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Napoli vs. Atalanta – Football Match Report – October 17, 2020

Napoli blasted four goals in a devastating 20-minute first half spell as they thumped Atalanta 4-1 in Serie A on Saturday, handing the visitors a taste of their own medicine.

Free-scoring Atalanta, last season’s top-scorers with 98 goals, had netted 13 goals in winning their first three games but had no answer to Napoli’s attacks in an extraordinary first half.

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Mexico international Hirving Lozano, out of favour with coach Gennaro Gattuso last season, set Napoli on their way with two goals in four minutes.

The player known as “Chucky” tapped in from Giovanni Di Lorenzo’s cross in the 23rd minute and curled in the second after Dries Mertens pounced on a mix-up in the Atalanta midfield.

Matteo Politano fired the third on the half hour and forward Victor Osimhen took advantage of more poor defending to score the fourth before the interval.

Napoli goalkeeper David Ospina’s kick upfield was misjudged by Cristian Romero and Osimhen, signed from Lille in the summer, chested the ball down and scored with a shot on the turn to net his first goal for his new club.

Romero partially made amends by setting up Atalanta’s consolation for substitute Sam Lammers in the 69th minute. He won possession, charged upfield and released Lammers who clipped his shot past Ospina.

Atalanta remained on nine points from four games, one ahead of Napoli.

Napoli have won all three of their games on the pitch, scoring 12 goals and conceding one.

However, Serie A’s disciplinary committee handed them a 3-0 defeat for failing to play a match against Juventus amid confusion over the COVID-19 rules and they also had a point deducted.

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