Afcon 2017 qualifiers: Dauda warns Black Stars against complacency

first_imgComplacency is the watchword for Ghana goalkeeper Fatau Dauda as the Black Stars face three countries in Afcon 2017 qualifying.The national side has been drawin against Mauritius, Rwanda and Mozambique – a group which has widely been seen as easy across Ghana.“Now every country knows how to play now so we have to focus on qualifying for the Afcon,” he said on Wednesday.Fatau has plenty experience with featuring against teams seen as lower in stature to Ghana, with the most famous perhaps being the loss to Burkina Faso in the Afcon 2013 semifinal in South Africa.All he wants from Ghana over the six games is tunnel vision.“They know that they are coming to face Ghana so they will prepare very and make every effort so it’s not going to be easy at all,” Dauda said in the interview with Metro TV. Ghana start the journey to make another Afcon with Mauritius on the weekend of June 12-14, then an away trip to Rwanda in September and finally host Mozambique in March 2016.The reverse legs will start in March and finish in September next year.–Follow Gary on Twitter: @garyalsmithlast_img read more

Trade anxiety building for Clippers ahead of the NBA trade deadline

first_imgLOS ANGELES — The NBA’s trade deadline arrives at noon PT on Thursday, not a moment too soon, as far as Clippers coach Doc Rivers is concerned. The Clippers might make another significant move after dealing forward Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons in a multi-player trade on Jan. 29.Then again, they might not. The only thing for certain Monday was that nothing was certain.“It’s not fun,” Rivers said of the countdown to the trade deadline and the building anxiety in the Clippers’ locker room. “It’s the worst time of the year. Some years are worse than others. Some years aren’t bad at all because you know you’re not making any moves.”There’s been a good deal of chatter in recent days and weeks about the Clippers. The rumor mill has been spinning at full speed since well before they dealt Griffin, Brice Johnson and Willie Reed for Avery Bradley, Tobias Harris, Boban Marjanovic and two draft picks. MEDICAL UPDATEGuard Austin Rivers could return to the Clippers’ lineup for Friday’s game against Griffin and the Pistons in Detroit, according to Doc Rivers. The younger Rivers sat out for the 18th consecutive game Monday because of a right ankle injury.Because of injuries, the Clippers have had their expected four-guard rotation for only their season-opening game plus the first half of their second contest. Milos Teodosic suffered a foot injury Oct. 21, then Patrick Beverley underwent season-ending surgery Nov. 22.“Every year you take a chance on one position,” Doc Rivers said. “You look at your bigs, and at the time we had Blake and (Danilo) Gallinari and you’re thinking you probably need an extra power forward just in case one goes down. With our guards, they were relatively healthy. Let’s take less guards. Then, bam, all your guards get hurt.” Most of the recent speculation has centered on Clippers center DeAndre Jordan and backup guard Lou Williams, but Rivers indicated there are more than just two players whose body language has indicated concerns about the upcoming deadline.“Sometimes you go talk to a guy and the guy says, ‘Oh, I’m good,’ and that could mean he’s not good or good,” Rivers said. “You’ve got to read that. Sometimes it’s clear as day. I can tell you I’ve seen that over the last three or four days from a couple guys, and it’s obviously weighing on them.“You really just want to give them a hug. I’ve been through it. It’s not fun. I think people look at athletes like they don’t have feelings, and they do. They’re emotional and there’s nothing you can do about it. It’s part of the business, the no-fun part of the business.”Trade angst doesn’t mix well with playing games and preparing to play games, Rivers added. After all, the Clippers are still focused on rallying for a playoff berth by season’s end. They went into Monday’s game against the Dallas Mavericks one game out of the eighth and final spot in the Western Conference.“It’s hard to keep your focus when all this stuff, this clutter, is going on, and we have a lot of clutter,” he said. “Guys respond to the talks. Still, right when they finish talking to you, their agent calls and they go right back down. I’m really looking forward to Friday.”center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more