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FIFA World Cup to begin a day early on November 20, Qatar to take on Ecuador

As per the previous schedule, the FIFA World Cup host Qatar had scheduled to play against Ecuador in the inauguration match on November 21

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FIFA World Cup

The FIFA World Cup will begin one day earlier than its official schedule, the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) officially announced on Thursday.

The opening match and ceremony of this year’s tournament at Al Bayt Stadium have been brought forward one day following a unanimous decision taken by the Bureau of the FIFA Council. Host country Qatar will now play Ecuador on Sunday 20 November as part of a stand-alone event, FIFA, the Football governing body confirmed the changes in its statement.

The decision has been taken by FIFA saying that it followed an assessment of the competition and operational implications and consultations with stakeholders and the host nation.

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As per the previous schedule, the FIFA host Qatar was set to play against Ecuador in the inaugural match on November 21 but Senegal vs Netherland would be the first match of the day. England against Iran would have been second.

Football’s top officials universally approved the decision, FIFA said in a statement while Qatar said it would give unspecified help to fans affected by the change. Qatar had also been frustrated as it has invested in a huge opening ceremony show.

The opening ceremony and first game will take place at the 60,000-seat Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor, north of the Qatari capital Doha.

Instead of Saturday, the 100-day countdown to the FIFA World Cup opening match started on Friday. This year’s edition brings the World Cup to the Arab World for the first time.

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Premier League: Week 9 saw two big derbies as Gabriel Jesus and Erling Haaland continue their scoring spell, Liverpool still struggle

Manchester City dominated the game and saw the two, Erling Haaland and Phil Foden, the prodigal son of Pep Guardiola, score a hattrick each.

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Matchday 9 of the Premier League was a riveting experience for the fans as the fixture saw 2 deciding derby matches between the English League giants. The week 9 fixture saw a derby clash between Arteta’s Arsenal and Conte’s Tottenham hotspurs, Jurgen Klaup’s Liverpool lock horns with Brighton, Marco Silva ‘s Fulham clash against Newcastle, Ward-Prowse and company fight against Frank Lampard’s Everton.

Viera’s Crystal Palace also clashed with Graham Potter’s Chelsea, Scott Parker’s Bournemouth vs Brentford, David Moyes’s West ham vs Bruno Lage’s Wolves. Week 9 also saw the clash of the giants in the derby between Pep’s Manchester City and Ten-Hag’s Manchester United. Leeds United also went head to head with Steven Gerrard Aston Villa.

The first derby of the week between league leaders Arsenal and Tottenham started the match week off on a captivating note as Arsenal went on to swift past Tottenham with a 3-1 victory as Arsenal’s Thomas Partey drew first blood at the 20th minute which was followed by New signee, Gabriel Jesus’s 49th-minute goal, and Swiss Granit Xhaka registering themselves in the scoresheet in the 49th and 67th minutes respectively.

Captain Harry Kane was able to come back with an answer to Arsenal’s first goal, however, the dream of a comeback came to an end after Emerson Royal received a red card in the 62nd minute. Whereas, Liverpool struggled to contain Brighton’s Leandro Trossard as they ended up tying 3-3 tie against Brighton. Newcastle was able to swiftly drift past Fulham in their clash as the game resulted in a 4-1 win for the Magpies.

Frank Lampard’s Everton was able to come up as winners in their clash with Southampton as Connor Coady and Dwight McNeil announced themselves on the scoresheet after Southampton drew first blood with Joe Aribo. Crystal Palace faced the blue giants Chelsea and struggled to contain blues as Pierre-Emrick Aubameyang balanced the playing fields as Conor Gallhagar came up with a 90th-minute winner. Bournemouth and Brentford came to an inconclusive end as they both tied nil-nil.

David Moyes’s West Ham was able to dominate in their fixture against Wolves as the Hammers scored two with the help of Gianluca Scamacca and Jarrod Bowen and seize a 2-0 victory against Wolves. Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa and Jesse Marsch’s Leads United had a stale ending as the game concluded with a 0-0 tie.

The most anticipated fixture of week 9 of the Premier League was the derby clash between Manchester City and Manchester United. As expected by many, Manchester City dominated the game and saw the two, Erling Haaland and Phil Foden, the prodigal son of Pep Guardiola, score a hattrick each. Manchester tried to fight back but could get 3 consolation goals by their new Signee, Antony, and old Anthony Martial resulting in 6-3 wind for Man City. Leicester City will be locking horns with Nottingham Forest tomorrow at the home of Leicester.

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Virat Kohli, Kartik Aaryan hail FIFA’s decision of honoring Sunil Chhetri, Twitter reacts

Sunil Chhetri is currently the third-highest goal scorer in international football after Cristiano Ronaldo and Leonel Messi.

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FIFA created a special series on Indian national football team captain Sunil Chhetri’s fantastic career. This special series is made to recognize his contribution in bringing up Indian football on the world map. The three episode series is named Captain Fantastic and it is available on FIFA+.

India might have yet not competed in FIFA World Cup but Chhetri’s participation in a series by the international football’s governing body is unique and big for the nation. And from cricketers to Bollywood celebs, everyone is con gratulating the football skipper for being an inspiration.

Former Indian skipper Virat Kohli took to his Instagram story and wises Chhetri on this new milestone. The cricketer has been a vocal fan of Sunil Chhetri and was also seen introducing him to his teammates during IPL 2019. Sunil Chhetri and wife Sonam had also hosted a dinner for Virat and his wife Anushka at their place.

Bollywood actor Kartik Aaryan was the first one from the film industry to congratulate the football skipper. Kartik tagged Sunil Chhetri on Instagram and wrote, “you make us proud skipper.”

Chhetri’s goal scoring prowess has propelled him to stand alongside football’s greatest ever – Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. The poster shared by FIFA has the The 37-year-old standing on the third spot on the sport podium along with Messi on the second and Ronaldo on the first position.

For the unversed, Sunil Chhetri is currently the third-highest goal scorer in international football among active players. Where Ronaldo tops the list with 117 goals, Chhetri is just six goals behind Messi’s 90 goal tally. Till date in his distinguished career, Sunil Chhetri has played 131 games for the Indian squad and netted 84 goals.

And the latest series documented by FIFA traces all the life journey of Chhetri in becoming the most successful captain of Indian Football Team.

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Viral: Indian football team skipper Sunil Chettri gets pushed aside by Bengal Governor La Ganesan for a photo-op, sparks flak | Watch

One Twitter user while expressing anguish over the incident also remarked that if it was Virat Kohli in that photo op who was getting pushed by the governor during a photo op, the story would have been stirred up by the mainstream media, but as the incident is related to football, no one will do anything, remarking the stark contrast of how football in India is covered by the media.

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Indian football team

Two videos from the Durand Cup football tournament between Mumbai City FC and Bengaluru FC at the salt lake stadium of Kolkata have surfaced on the internet, where the Bengal Governor and Sports can be seen pushing aside the Bengaluru FC players during the trophy ceremony as they came in between the photos.

In the video, the Bengal Governor, La Ganesan, can be seen standing beside Sunil Chettri and tournament officials and organizers, but after realizing that his face might get cut out from the photo’s being clicked as the player is in line of contact. He pushed aside the Indian football team skipper, Sunil Chettri, in one video. A similar predicament happened in the same trophy ceremony where Sivasakthi Narayanan, Bengaluru FC can be seen getting pushed aside by the minister of youth and sports affairs, Aroop Biswas.

Read Also: Premier league: Week 8 witnessed Tottenham, Manchester City, Everton and Arsenal pull past their opponents, Newcastle’s stalemate spell continues

After the video surfaced on the Internet, many Twitter users came forward expressing their rage and anger against the act. One Twitter user while expressing anguish over the incident also remarked that if it was Virat Kohli in that photo op who was getting pushed by the governor during a photo op, the story would have been stirred up by the mainstream media, but as the incident is related to football, no one will do anything, remarking the stark contrast of how football in India is covered by the media.

Another user wrote that these are the signs that suggest Indian football is being sidelined by people who don’t know the value of the sport.

A video of a similar nature went viral before where the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, can be seen pulling aside Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, for his face to be seen during the photo op. The incident occurred when the Prime Minister reached the headquarters of Facebook to meet the founder.

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