23 days agoSuper agent Jorge Mendes eyeing Barcelona whizkid Ansu Fati

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Super agent Jorge Mendes eyeing Barcelona whizkid Ansu Fatiby Paul Vegas23 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveSuper agent Jorge Mendes is eyeing Barcelona whizkid Ansu Fati.El Chiringuito says Mendes has approached the 16 year-old’s father to offer his services.For now, the player is in the hands of Rodrigo Messi, the older brother of Lionel Messi, who took charge of Fati’s affairs earlier this year.Mendes hasn’t always had a good relationship with Barca, though he does have Blaugrana fullback Nelson Semedo on the books.Fati is in new contract talks with Barca after his exciting breakthrough, with his current deal running to 2022. last_img

Read More »

Hamas denies taking part in Egypt Syria fighting

first_imgGAZA CITY- The Gaza Strip’s Hamas prime minister Ismail Haniyeh denied on Saturday reports that the Islamic militant group was involved in fighting in the neighbouring Egyptian Sinai or in Syria.“We did not interfere in the affairs of any country and are not involved in the events or differences or internal conflicts of any country,” Haniyeh said.“This (is) our position regarding what has happened and is happening in Syria, Egypt, Lebanon and all Arab and Islamic countries,” he said. “We are not involved in any incident,” he added. “Neither in the Sinai or elsewhere. We only act in the Palestinian arena and our guns are turned only toward the Zionist enemy.”He called on the media to stop their “baseless” accusations against Hamas, which he said “is proud to have taken from its first day a principled and moral position for the people and their suffering and their right to freedom , democracy and dignity.”Haniyeh made the remarks during a speech marking two years since captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was exchanged for 1,027 Palestinian prisoners, feted in Gaza as a victory for the “resistance.”Relations between Cairo and Hamas have deteriorated since July 3, when the Egyptian army ousted president Mohamed Morsi, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood in which Hamas has its roots.Since then, the Egyptian army has destroyed hundreds of smuggling tunnels under the border with the Gaza Strip , which supplied the Palestinian territory with food and construction materials.last_img read more

Read More »

Terry Collins And Ned Yost Both Took Their Starters Out Too Late

World Series Game 3 was a tale of two hooks. Managers often get too much credit or blame for how their teams perform, but one of the most important decisions they can make is pulling the starting pitcher at just the right time. In Game 3, neither the Mets’ Terry Collins nor the Royals’ Ned Yost made the best decision, but one manager had his faith in his pitcher rewarded, and one suffered.Against a Royals lineup that doesn’t strike out, Mets starter Noah Syndergaard did as well as could be expected, fanning six batters. His four-seam fastball averaged 97.5 mph, higher even than the lofty baseline (97.1) he’d set in the regular season. From the first pitch of the game — which buzzed Royals leadoff hitter and magical totem Alcides Escobar — Syndergaard looked calm, purposeful, and in control.But in the top of the sixth, Syndergaard had retired 12 consecutive batters before giving up a single to Mike Moustakas and walking Salvador Perez (a rare feat) and Alex Gordon. Bases loaded, two out, Syndergaard had thrown 102 pitches — should Collins pull him? This season, Syndergaard allowed an unimpressive .860 OPS to opposing batters the third time through the order, and one lucky swing could have turned this game into a Royals win.Collins stuck with Syndergaard. It “worked” — the Royals’ Alex Rios grounded out to end the inning, and the Mets’ bullpen took care of the rest. After the game, Collins said, “I just thought that was a situation where, listen, we needed that third out and I thought he was the guy to do it.”The other guy who could’ve done it was Bartolo Colon. Colon, the savvy starter turned postseason reliever, gave up only a .698 OPS his first time through the order, much better than a tiring Syndergaard was likely to do. What’s more, that stat comes primarily from Colon’s experience as a starting pitcher, so he was likely to be even better in that situation coming from the bullpen.Meanwhile, Royals starter Yordano Ventura’s fastball wasn’t at its best, averaging 93.7 mph,1I’m using Pitchf/x data from MLB, scraped with John Choiniere’s script. almost three ticks lower than his average regular season velocity of 96.4. The loss of velocity showed; Ventura gave up seven hits in only 3 1/3rd innings of work and recorded only one strikeout.With the benefit of hindsight, it’s easy to see that pulling Ventura earlier would have been the right move. At the time, Yost may have reasoned that Ventura didn’t have much of a dropoff in the second time through the batting order, allowing a .661 OPS against opposing batters this year with a 2.5 strikeout-to-walk ratio. But Ventura was clearly having trouble, and the alternative was a Royals bullpen that was second-best in MLB at preventing runs. Even a relatively mediocre option from the pen like Luke Hochevar posted a better strikeout-to-walk ratio than Ventura in the second run through the order, and Yost could have drawn on him or converted starter Danny Duffy to throw a couple of innings each.Instead of pulling Ventura, Yost watched him give up a second homer, to Curtis Granderson in the third, before allowing three straight hits in the fourth inning. That’s three runs overall — and those three proved to be decisive, allowing the Mets to establish a lead they’d carry to the end of the game. Yost made a couple of other puzzling decisions, most obviously calling for Franklin Morales in the sixth. Morales, a back-of-the-bullpen player, gave up a few more runs and forced Yost to call for one of his vaunted relief aces (Kelvin Herrera).So we had two managers with similar decisions, but only one who suffered the consequences. That’s postseason baseball, where decisions are often judged in retrospect. Neither Collins nor Yost made the best choice in the moment, although Yost’s decision to stick with a starter whose stuff was measurably lacking is more egregious. Only Yost saw his starter fall apart, and the Royals lost a game as a result. read more

Read More »

Ohio State wrestling marching on without Logan Stieber

The Ohio State wrestling team eagerly anticipates the return of redshirt sophomore and team captain Logan Stieber as he works his way back from a leg muscle strain he suffered in early January. Stieber, who is undefeated with a 15-0 record, has been out for the past three matches, and his absence has been felt. The Buckeyes are 1-2 without him in the lineup. OSU coach Tom Ryan said Stieber’s presence has a great impact on how the team performs. “I think when you have a guy like Logan, I mean you have a great leader in there,” Ryan said. After all, Stieber is the defending 133-pound NCAA Champion. “You don’t know how guys are going to react without him in there until you see it, and I think he’s a spark. He’s a spark for the team and we need him back.” As important as Stieber is to the team, his fellow wrestlers aren’t using his absence as an excuse for their losing record during that time. Freshman Mark Martin, who wrestles at 165 pounds,said the team needs to increase its effort without, arguably, its top wrestler. “It basically forces us to step up. Everybody has to step up and make up for him being out, I guess. We all have to do our jobs and pick up our mentality,” Martin said. Because of the injury, which is being evaluated on a week-to-week basis, Stieber has had to tweak the way he leads the team with just his words instead of by example. “(It’s difficult) just being at practice and not being able to wrestle at matches,” he said. “I can always help by talking and getting everyone pumped up, but it’s very different if you’re out there wrestling. That’s the thing that sucks the most.” But the Buckeyes shouldn’t have to wait much longer to see the 2012 All-American and Big Ten Champion back on the mats. Stieber has been pleased with his progress since the injury and said he is set to return against Illinois on Feb. 1. “It’s going good, but we don’t want to rush back into anything,” he said. “I just have to take my time and have a great rehab.” In the meantime, several Buckeyes have the opportunity to fill the hole left by Stieber’s absence. Redshirt freshman Kyle Visconti, who typically wrestles at 125 pounds, has been wrestling in place of Stieber in the 133-pound weight class, going 1-2 in that time span. However, the Buckeyes could be going with a different 133-pounder this Friday away against Indiana, with redshirt sophomore Drew Stone, who also is listed at 125 pounds. “There will be a wrestle-off this week between Visconti and Stone,” Ryan said. “Stone was out with an injury so we couldn’t have a wrestle-off before, and plus it was really last minute who we were going to put in there. So they’ll wrestle off if we don’t figure it out.” After Indiana, the Buckeyes are set to host Wisconsin on Jan. 20 at St. John Arena. read more

Read More »

Football Ohio State defense creates momentum after Michigan State win

Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano celebrates after defensive lineman Dre’mont Jones recovered a fumble in the end zone for a touchdown in the fourth quarter of the game against Michigan State on Nov. 10. Ohio State won 26-6. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorEAST LANSING, Mich. — The moment was going to come. The Ohio State coaching staff was sure of it. With Michigan State starting five offensive drives within their 20-yard line, redshirt junior defensive tackle Dre’Mont Jones said the coaching staff was in the ears of the Ohio State defensive line, saying “We are going to create a turnover. We are going to create a turnover.” Jones has had his moment before. In Ohio State’s 40-28 win over TCU on Sept. 15, Jones got in front of a shovel pass from sophomore quarterback Shawn Robinson, running 28 yards for the score. But the Ohio State coaching staff said the defense was going to create another turnover, a turnover that would define the Buckeyes’ performance in East Lansing. Jones obliged. With the Spartans pinned against their own two-yard line, redshirt junior quarterback Brian Lewerke dropped back, looking to pass and dropped the ball. The veteran defensive tackle pounced on the ball, securing his second touchdown of the season. This touchdown gave Ohio State confidence, a confidence that would lead the defense to allow six points and 274 yards of offense in a 26-6 win against No. 18 Michigan State. In a game where the Ohio State offense struggled to find consistency against a Michigan State defense with a reputation, in a game where the Ohio State special teams unit consistently pinned the Spartans into difficult situations, giving Ohio State the advantage defensively, the Buckeyes came out with confidence.“A game like this where we held that team to only six points, and a talented team in their house, only six points, it’s a tremendous, tremendous feeling. It’s definitely a confidence booster,” Jones said.  Other than one 47-yard rush by redshirt freshman quarterback Rocky Lombardi, the Ohio State rush defense, with the No. 1 rush defense in the country watching, allowed seven yards rushing on 17 carries. Despite only recording two tackles for loss, one by redshirt sophomore linebacker Tuf Borland and one shared by sophomore linebacker Malik Harrison and junior defensive end Jonathon Cooper, the Ohio State defensive line showed pressure in the passing game. The Buckeyes recorded six quarterback hits on Saturday, three coming from sophomore defensive end Chase Young. Cooper said this time of year, the time of the football season provides this needed pressure to succeed. He said the matchup with Michigan State is always physical and tough. But Jones viewed it as something bigger. An opportunity to prove a larger message. “Whether we like it or not, we hear the stuff in the background we don’t want to hear, but it happens. This was a big momentum for us,” Jones said. “We came out there, we played with swag and a lot of enthusiasm.” The Michigan State performance also shows improvement from performances over the past few weeks. After missing 15 tackles against Purdue and 20 against Nebraska, sophomore safety Brendon White said the focus in the week leading up to the Michigan State game was on tackling drills, becoming more physical in a game where the unit knew it was necessary. Cooper said, with the combination of the practices leading up to Ohio State’s game in East Lansing and the performance of the team, he has confidence in what the unit has been working on. “We have confidence in that everything we have been doing since the beginning of the season, it’s going to work,” Cooper said. “We have been practicing hard, we’ve been going hard and even though everybody kind of like telling us to do this or do that, we just stuck with the plan and it pays off, as you can see.” Leading up to Saturday’s game against Michigan State, Ohio State sophomore linebacker Pete Werner said this game needed to be an “impact game” for the defense, an opportunity to show the country what the Ohio State defense can do. Cooper felt the performance against the Spartans was that game. But it’s still not where Ohio State, as a unit, strives to be. “I feel like we still haven’t played our best game,” Cooper said. “We still have so much more to show, so much more to work on and improve on and we will get better week by week and that’s just the main focus.”  Head coach Urban Meyer did not need perfection. He needed momentum, he needed confidence for a unit that was vital to the life of this time. In his opinion, he got it. “That’s confidence man,” Meyer said. “We talk about an outfit that needed it, we needed it.” read more

Read More »

Essien warns Chelsea over HazardReal Madrid transfer talk

first_imgChelsea legend Michael Essien believes Eden Hazard may leave for Real Madrid as “every player” wants to play for Los BlancosWith no new contract agreed at Stamford Bridge, Hazard continues to be strongly linked with a move to Real.The Belgian winger flirted with the idea of going to the Santiago Bernabeu again this month with Real president Florentino Perez allegedly keen on the move.And Essien, who also played for Real himself, understands the lure of playing for one of the world’s greatest clubs in football.“Hazard is one of the best players in the world,” Essien told Express Sport.“The interest of Real Madrid, I only hear from people in the media. But I mean when Real Madrid come calling… every player would love to play for them.“He’s happy at Chelsea though and hopefully we can keep him.”Andreas Christensen, Victor Moses and Danny Drinkwater are all being linked with exits from Chelsea themselves.FC Barcelona, Valencia CFMatch Preview: Barcelona vs Valencia Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 Is derby time in La Liga, as Barcelona welcomes Valencia to the Camp Nou Stadium tonight at 21:00 (CET).In particular, Christensen’s situation in West London has caused him to be linked with a move to Barcelona due to a lack of playing time this season.“Every player wants to play,” added Essien.“Chelsea isn’t an easy place to come and the competition is very fierce.“At the end of the day, all the players work but it’s the manager who will pick who he wants to play.“When you’re not playing you get frustrated and you want to look elsewhere.“It’s up to them really but they have to keep working and then everyone gets their chance.”Chelsea will take on Watford today for their Boxing Day which will begin at 20:30 (CET).last_img read more

Read More »

Sarri slams disrepectful Bayern over HudsonOdoi

first_imgChelsea manager Maurizio Sarri says Bayern Munich lacked respect in their pursuit of youngster Callum Hudson-Odoi.Bayern Munich have made four bids for Callum Hudson-Odoi, with the latest believed to be in the region of £35m, and Chelsea have rejected all offers.And Chelsea boss Sarri is furious at Bayern’s public attempts to unsettle the player.He told Sky Sports: “I think that it’s not professional because they are talking about a player under contract at Chelsea,” Sarri said ahead of Chelsea’s game with Newcastle on Saturday.Sacchi explains Sarri, Conte, and Ancelotti Manuel R. Medina – September 14, 2019 Arrigo Sacchi talked about how Sarri has a tougher time at Juventus than Conte at Inter; while Ancelotti’s “blood is boiling” at Napoli.Arrigo Sacchi…“They didn’t respect our club, I think. I don’t know what to say, I do not know the situation.“I am very, very happy with the player because the player is improving.“He is improving a lot in the defensive phase and now he needs to improve in some movements without the ball.“He is working very well at the moment, so I am happy with the player and I would like to have him in the future.”last_img read more

Read More »