Ethiopian soccer clubs to establish new football league

APA-Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) Over 40 sports clubs in Ethiopia announced on Sunday plans to establish a national football league.
The football league, according to the clubs, will be launched within a few weeks time, which is expected to tackle the country’s football problem.
The Ethiopian Football Federation, currently under FIFA sanctions, said that a total of 41 football clubs of the country’s premier league will be part of the new league.
“The league takes from the experiences of other African countries football leagues. It will help us to solve the country’s football problems as well as to undertake capacity building for referees,” said the federation.
The Federation was sanctioned by FIFA since last June after the sacking of the former president and the election of its own executive council.
FIFA continues to demand for the return of the former president and his administration while the current administration has agreed to continue dialogue with FIFA on the issue.
As a result of the FIFA sanctions, the Ethiopian national football team was unable to participate in the ongoing joint African Nations Cup and World Cup qualifiers. (Source: African Press Agency)

Lessons of Life from the South
By Neil Morris
South (Debub) PoliceLocal derbies stir the blood of any football fan. It doesn’t matter if you’re in Glasgow , Rome , Cairo or Buenos Aires – there is something about the meeting of two local sides that touches our tribal instincts. I should include Addis Ababa in that list, because the St George versus Ethiopian Coffee clash is guaranteed to fill the national stadium irrespective of the form of the two teams. So, when I saw that the southern derby between Awassa City and Debub Police was due to take place last weekend, it was time to fill the car up with petrol! >>

Defence ForceJanuary 21, 2009
St.George tastes first defeat
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - Defending champion St.George tasted its first defeat of the season at the hands of Defence Force (1-2) here on Saturday.
Medhane Tadesse scored both goals for Defence bringing his season's tally to 9 goals. More

Wonji Sugar FCJanuary 14, 2009
Visit to Wonji
By Neil Morris
"I have to confess a certain apprehension as we travelled south from Addis to Nazret and then on to Wonji. I had heard stories about their supporters which suggested that they did not exactly offer the traditional coffee ceremony to visitors. Having watched football in England through the 1970s and 80s, I was not going to let such tales put me off going to the match, but I did rather hope to return from it.>>

Ethio-Australia Soccer TournamentJanuary 13, 2009
Ethiopians on ball in Yarraville
ETHIOPIAN communities from across Australia sent their best soccer players to Yarraville last week.
Talent and spirit were both in abundance when players and friends descended on McIvor Reserve for the National Ethiopian Community Associations Sport Federation’s annual soccer tournament.>>
Baruch Dego (Beruk Degu)
Soccer / In Ashdod, players rush home after practice
Under normal circumstances, Baruch Dego would have celebrated his Ashdod S.C. club's 4-1 Toto Cup victory on Tuesday over Lothar Matthaus' Maccabi Netanya, currently second in the Premier League. But in Ashdod, the southern coastal city that has suffered repeated rocket attacks since the outbreak of the Gaza offensive, "we don't even remember what cafes look like," he says. >>

January 10, 2009
Binyam Assefa (Photo: St.George Website)St.George defeat rival Ethiopian Coffee 1-0
By Neil Morris
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia- (January 10,2009) - Defending champion St.George extended their unbeaten record with a 1-0 win over arch rival Ethiopian Coffee thanks to a 75th minute goal by Binyam Assefa here today. Earlier in the day, EEPCO shared a point with Trans Ethiopia.>>

January 7, 2009
Harar Beer moves up to 2nd place
By Neil Morris
Harar, Ethiopia - Harar Beer moved up to 2nd place with a 2-1 win over Ethiopian Coffee here today.
In a double-header in Addis Ababa, St.George demolish Trans Ethiopia 5-0 with two goals from leading striker Saladine Said and another from Binyam Assefa and EEPCO beat Nyala 1-0 thanks to Berhanu Bogale's goal in the 23rd minute. Today's attendance was 7,000.
South Police was too strong for Sebeta City, who lost 4-0.

Saladin Said (Photo: Courtesy of St.George FC)January 4, 2009
St.George defeats Harar Beer 3-1 thanks to Saladin's hat-trick
By Neil Morris
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - There were two games played here today. In the first, Mekelle-based Trans Ethiopia snatched all three points from from Nyala thanks to a last minute header from Ephrem Bahru, who scored the only goal of the match.

The second game was a cracker between two good sides, hosts St George and Harar Beer. It was something of a personal triumph for national team striker Saladin Said, who notched a hat-trick. His first came after just 6 minutes as he sent a first-time strike from 10 yards under 'keeper Dawit Assefa. He doubled his tally 13 minutes later, meeting a cross from the left with a bullet header that powered into the roof of the net.
Harar were lucky to trail by only 2 at the break but gave themselves a lifeline on the 50th minute as Tadesse Teka converted a penalty awarded when Samson Mulugeta blocked a shot with his hand. Any hopes the visitors had of snatching a draw were dashed within 9 minutes however as Saladin received the ball at the far post, beat a defender and shot into the roof. This win preserves St George's unbeaten start and to add to their fans' glee, rivals Coffee went down by the only goal at Metahara. The big Addis derby takes place next Saturday.

Elsewhere, there were draws in the games at Sebeta (v Banks) and Mugher Cement (v EEPCO).

Defence Force beat South Police 3-2 in front of 500 spectators
By Neil Morris
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - Defence Force beat South Police 3-2 here on Saturday in a thrilling match watched by only 500 people.
The visitors took the lead on 7 minutes with a fine strike from Fekru Muluneh, his rising drive from 20 yards beating goalkeeper Habtamu Berkele. Defence were on level terms after 26 minutes when Liya Gebremeskel was fouled in the penalty area and Samuel Berhanu converted the resultant spot-kick.
There was more drama to follow as Berkele took a knock and was unable to continue his participation. Substitute Habtum Birhane replaced him and suffered a nightmare introduction when he fumbled a cross from Anteneh Gezaye into his own net shortly before half-time.
Five minutes into the second period, Defence equalised again when Madhele Tadesse struck a left foot shot from 15 yards which Police ‘keeper Anteneh Abteh really should have kept out. The home side finally took the lead with 17 minutes remaining when Samuel Berhanu fired in a rocket from the edge of the penalty box.

Ethiopian InsuranceDecember 26, 2008
Ethiopian Premier League
St.George extends lead as close rivals lose
Hawassa City, Ethiopia-
Defending champions St.George extended their lead to four points with a 1-0 win over South Police here, while close rivals Ethiopian Coffee and Mugher Cement lost to Ethiopian Banks (1-2) and Trans Ethiopia (1-2) respectively.
Big Movers
Hawassa City jumped to third place (from sixth) with a 3-0 thrashing of Nyala at home. Ethiopian Insurance, a 2-0 winner over Defence Force (sixth to fourth) and Harar Beer, which secured a 2-1 victory over last-placed Metehara away, also moved up three slots. For more results & League Table Standings, click here

December 22, 2008
Ethiopian Premier League
St.George back in the lead
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia-
Defending champions St.George are back in the lead after a 1-0 victory over Ethiopian Banks here, while South Police fails 2-0 in Harar on Saturday. Mugher Cement jumped to 3rd place with a 2-0 win over Hawassa City in Ambo, while all three matches played on Sunday ended up in draws.

December 16, 2008
Premier league players suspended for two years
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Capital Newspaper)-
Mesoud Mohammed, Yonas G. Michael and Cameroonian Benowit have been suspended from Ethiopian football for two years. This is the first time the federation has passed such a strong decision on players who signed for two sides in one season. >>

December 14, 2008
Ethiopian Premier League
Hawassa rebounds, EEPCO scores first win
Hawassa City, Ethiopia (By Neil Morris)- Hawassa City rebounded from last week's 5-0 walloping by Dire Dawa City, to hammer Trans Ethiopia 5-0 here today. Meanwhile, EEPCO beat Defence Force to score its first victory of the season and Ethiopian Coffee edged out Adama City 2-1 in Addis Ababa.
In Dire Dawa, Mugher Cement collected 3 valuable points from the home team, Sebeta City defeated Nyala 1-0 at home, and Metehara City and South Police shared a point (1-1). Check League Table

December 13, 2008
Ethiopian Premier League
St.George defeats Insurance 1-0 to go on top
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (By Neil Morris)- Defending champion St.George climbed to the top of the Ethiopian Premier League with a 1-0 victory over Ethiopian Insurance in a low key encounter watched by a disappointingly low attendance of about 2,500. The only goal came on 20 mins when Habtamu Mengashu crashed home an excellent rising drive from the edge of the penalty area. Insurance had chances but never looked capable of breaking down the champions.
In the 2nd game, Ethiopian Banks could only draw 1-1 with visiting Harar Beer team. Banks took the lead on 29mins but the visitors levelled 4 minutes before the break.

Ethiopian Premier League
Meta Abo Beer gives Coffee life line
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - Financially struggling Ethiopian Coffee FC has landed strong support from the Ethiopian Commodity Exchange and Meta Abo Brewery becoming one of the top moneyed squads. Though until recently considered arch rival to the nation’s oldest, richest and most popular club, Saint George, Coffee in the past couple of years faced high financial constraints hardly able to sign big name players. The result has been a decade existence never winning the premier league.>>

December 11, 2008
Visit to Debub Police
By Neil Morris
Tourists in Ethiopia commonly head for the north and the so-called historic circuit of rock churches, castles and monasteries. They really ought to find time to head to the south of the country and in particular the lakeside city of Awassa. >>

Ethiopian Premier League
South Police Smashes Trans Ethiopia 5-0, Coffee beats EEPCO 2-1
Hawassa City, Ethiopia - Newly promoted South Police (aka Debub Police) smashed Trans Ethiopia 5-0 here yesterday. Meanwhile in Addis Ababa, Defence Force defeated Nyala 1-0 and Ethiopian Coffee slowly climbed to the top of the league table with a 2-1 victory over EEPCO in front of 10,000 fans.Teams Standings