Anthony Ujah

Union Berlin v. Schalke recap and video highlights
Photo by MICHAEL SOHN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Union Berlin, Schalke scrap to a 1-1 draw (video)

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Schalke’s winless run hit 11 but it snapped a four-match losing streak in a 1-1 draw at Union Berlin on Sunday.

Jonjoe Kenny’s rocket goal (video) allowed Schalke a point after Robert Andrich’s opener put Union on top.

Union’s point moves it two results clear of the bottom three and seven ahead of the automatic relegation places.

Schalke’s 38 points are seven back of sixth and five back of seventh with four matches to play.

[ LIVE: Bundesliga scores, stats ]

Union’s Yunus Malli hit a point-blank shot directly to the keeper within four minutes of kickoff. Ujah missed a close-range shot soon after, another warning for Schalke.

A lightning counter from Union made it 1-0, with Ujah leading the rush before rolling a tremendous through ball onto the path of Andrich.

Schalke’s defense is joining its attack in being a mess, and Ujah’s next bid for a goal was only denied by a strong save from Alexander Nubel.

The game being as wild as it can be, Schalke answered the mess with a goal from Everton’s Kenny. A seemingly harmless throw-in was quickly moved across the pitch to Kenny in space, who ripped a 20-plus yard shot across the box and past Rafael Gikiewicz.

The chances were few in the second half, both strugglers unable to provide a difference maker. Union had a pair of late corners, Kenny blocking the first and Nubel the second.

 

German federation explains review of players who honored George Floyd

George Floyd tributes in soccer
Bernd Thissn/Pool via AP
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BERLIN — The German soccer federation has defended its decision to assess whether four young Bundesliga players who made gestures in solidarity with George Floyd over the weekend must face sanctions.

The DFB also said on Monday that Jadon Sancho’s booking for removing his jersey to reveal a T-shirt with the demand “Justice for George Floyd” had nothing to do with the message — rather, the yellow card was issued because the 20-year-old England forward broke a rule that says players who celebrate goals by taking off their jerseys or lifting them over their heads must be booked for “unsporting behavior.”

Borussia Dortmund teammate Achraf Hakimi, 21, who displayed the same message after scoring in the same game on Sunday, was not booked because he did not lift his jersey over his head.

The DFB control committee is looking into their gestures and those made by Schalke’s 21-year-old American midfielder Weston McKennie and Borussia Monchengladbach’s 22-year-old French forward Marcus Thuram to see if the four players broke laws that prohibit players from displaying “political, religious or personal slogans.”

McKennie was the first to make a statement when he wore an armband with the handwritten message “Justice for George” around his left arm on Saturday.

Thuram on Sunday took a knee after scoring in Borussia Monchengladbach’s win over Union Berlin.

Sancho and Hakimi followed suit later Sunday.

Floyd, a handcuffed black man, died on Monday after a white Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, pressed his knee for several minutes on his neck. Three other officers were also at the scene. Chauvin has been charged with murder and all four were fired.

DFB president Fritz Keller on Monday showed his respect and understanding for McKennie, Thuram, Sancho and Hakimi’s gestures.

“If people are discriminated against on the basis of their skin color, it is unbearable. If they die because of their skin color, then I am deeply distraught,” Keller said in a DFB statement. “The victims of racism need all of us to show solidarity.”

Keller referred to meetings with victims of discrimination and representatives of organizations that have faced anti-Semetic, anti-Muslim or racist hostility, and said the DFB and German soccer was showing its clear rejection of all forms of racism, discrimination and violence.

Keller also praised both male and female players for taking a stand and showing their solidarity.

“I’m proud of them. I can completely understand the actions from the weekend. Nobody can be indifferent to what happened in the United States,” Keller said.

Former Mainz forward Anthony Ujah was just given a warning by the DFB in 2014 in regard to the ban on political statements when he displayed a T-shirt with Eric Garner’s name and the words “can’t breathe” and “justice,” in reference to Garner’s death after a police officer placed him in what appeared to be a chokehold.

Now playing for Union Berlin, Ujah on Thursday tweeted a picture of his protest from the time, but with Floyd’s name typed above in bold.

Floyd also said “I can’t breathe” before he died.

“If the DFB’s control committee wants to investigate, then I have to ask myself if we all have the same values,” Union sporting director Oliver Ruhnert said. “It’s about a global issue here: The no to racism.”

Bundesliga striker celebrates goal by pulling on goat mascot’s horns

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I can confidently say I have never felt the sudden urge to pull on a goat’s horns. Cologne striker Anthony Ujah cannot say the same.

After scoring a deflected goal today in Cologne’s 4-2 win over Eintracht Frankfurt, the 24-year-old sprinted euphorically towards the club’s mascot Hennes VIII – who happens to be a full-size male goat – and yanked its horns.

It can’t have been a good feeling for the goat, who I can only imagine thought for a moment its life was coming to an end. The handlers were caught off guard as well, and frantically attempted to keep the goat from sprinting away in fear. Mercifully, Ujah finally let go to join his teammates in celebration of his ninth goal of the season.

It is entirely unclear what Ujah was attempting to accomplish other than take out his sudden joy on the poor goat’s domepieces. Hennes Weisweiler must be rolling in his grave with voodoo pain.

Here is video below, courtesy of the Daily Mail:

With Major League Soccer’s opening weekend continuing today, hopefully there won’t be any attempt to top this in live-animal fashion, because that would likely mean there would be lions or bulls involved, and nobody wants to see that carnage.