first_imgNow that former cricketer Gautam Gambhir has officially joined the Bharatiya Janata Party, speculation around his political career have started to rise. This is not the first time that cricketers are batting on the political pitch.According to Historian Ram Guha, the first ever cricketer to join politics was Palwankar Baloo, a Dalit leader who contested for a by-election in Bombay Municipality in 1933-34 and lost to a Parsi doctor Homi F Pavri.In 1937, the Congress party contested him against Bhim Rao Ambedkar. Baloo gave tough competition to Ambedkar, however he lost by a margin of more than 2,000 votes. The first Indian cricketer-turned-politician post independence was Nawab Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi who contested in 1971. Thus, the first cricketer-turned-politician of India was a Dalit and a Nawab.Cricketers, especially those performing well, have a fan following which helps them to attract the masses. But does this translate into political success?India Today Data Intelligence Unit has identified 10 famous cricketers of independent India who joined politics and assessed them on the basis of five parameters:a) Joining a political partyb) Contesting a state assembly electionc) Contesting a Lok Sabha constituency electiond) Winning a state assembly electione) Winning a Lok Sabha constituency election Joining political partiesAll the above mentioned politicians were launched by a political party. None of them contested as an independent candidate.By launching four cricketers in politics, BJP tops the chart. Navjot Singh Sidhu (now in INC), Chetan Chauhan, Kirti Azad (now in INC) and Sreesanth’s political career started from BJP.advertisementNext in line is the Congress party which gave wings to two cricketers, Mohammad Azharuddin and Mohammad Kaif. Even though the INC had given a ticket to Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi for Bhopal Lok Sabha constituency in 1991, he was first launched by Vishal Haryana Party from Gurgaon constituency in 1971.Manoj Prabhakar, Vinod Kambli and Praveen Kumar joined All India Indira Congress (Tiwari), Lok Bharti Party and Samajwadi Party respectively. Getting a ticket for state assembly pollsOnly five out of the ten cricketers contested the state assembly elections. These names include Navjot Singh Sidhu (Congress), Kirti Azad (BJP), Chetan Chauhan (BJP), Vinod Kambli (Lok Bharti Party) and Sreesanth (BJP).Getting a ticket for Lok Sabha pollsPolitical parties seem to be more interested in fielding cricketers in Lok Sabha polls rather than the state assembly polls. While the number of cricketers contesting in state assembly polls was five, there were seven cricketers who have contested for Lok Sabha polls.Navjot Singh Sidhu (Amritsar), Kirti Azad (Darbhanga), Chetan Chauhan (Amroha), Mohammad Azharuddin (Moradabad), Manoj Prabhakar (South Delhi), Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi (Bhopal and Gurgaon) and Mohammad Kaif (Allahabad) have been given tickets to Lok Sabha polls by political parties in the past.Winning a state assembly pollThe success rate of cricketers contesting a state assembly election is 60 percent.Out of the five cricketers who contested the state assembly polls, only three recorded a victory. Out of the three winners, two are currently serving as Cabinet ministers in their respective state governments.Navjot Singh Sidhu is an MLA from Amritsar East assembly seat in 2017 and holds the portfolio of Minister of Local Government, Tourism, Cultural Affairs, Archives and Museums in Punjab Government.In 2017, Chetan Chauhan got elected from Naugawan Sadat (Amroha), Uttar Pradesh. He is currently the minister of Sports, Youth Welfare, Vocational Education, and Skill Development in the Uttar Pradesh government.Kirti Azad became an MLA from Gole Market assembly seat, Delhi in 1993.Sreesanth contested from the BJP’s ticket in Kerala assembly polls from Thiruvananthapuram seat in 2016 and lost to INC’s VS Sivakumar.Vinod Kambli contested the 2009 Maharashtra Assembly election from Vikhroli seat in Mumbai where he managed to garner only 3,861 votes and lost to MNS candidate Mangesh Sangle by a margin of around 50,000 votes.Winning a Lok Sabha electionThe success rate of the ten cricketers mentioned contesting a Lok Sabha election is 57.14 per cent which is lower than the success rate of cricketers contesting in state assembly polls.Out of the seven cricketers who contested the Lok Sabha polls, only four won a Lok Sabha election.Sidhu, Azad and Chauhan have received victory in the Lok Sabha polls. Sidhu won Amritsar seat in 2004, Azad is serving his third term as Lok Sabha MP from Darbhanga and Chauhan has been an MP from Amroha in 1991 and 1998.In 2015, the Bharatiya Janata Party suspended Kirti Azad after he levelled allegations against finance minister Arun Jaitley of being connected in irregularities in the Delhi district cricket association (DDCA)advertisementIn February 2019, Kirti Azad joined the Congress party. Mohammad Azharuddin is the fourth cricketer who won the Moradabad Lok Sabha constituency of Uttar Pradesh in 2009.INC’s Mohammad Kaif lost from his hometown Allahabad in 2014 Lok Sabha polls. Manoj Prabhakar contested from the South Delhi seat on All India Indira Congress (Tiwari)’s ticket in 1996 where he could manage only 3.34 per cent votes and lost.Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi fought the Lok Sabha elections twice. First in 1971, from Gurgaon constituency on Vishal Haryana Party’s ticket which he lost as Indira Gandhi had gained popularity at that time.He gave another try in politics in 1991, from Bhopal on INC’s ticket, however he lost it to the BJP candidate Sushil Chandra Verma. At that time, the Ram Janmabhoomi movement was on a rise that tolled his political career and he did not contest again.Praveen Kumar, who joined the Samajwadi Party ahead of 2017 UP assembly polls said that he would take two to three years to learn politics and thus has not contested any of the elections.Also Read | Former cricketer Gautam Gambhir joins BJPAlso Watch | Navjot Singh Sidhu’s popularity soars over Kartarpur initiative: PSE surveylast_img read more

first_imgA federal judge in North Dakota has handed Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds a victory in temporarily halting enforcement of a Barack Obama administration clean water rule in the state.The Waters of the United States rule is disliked by conservative groups including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the American Farm Bureau Federation which claim it’s classic government over-regulation.It was challenged in court in June 2015 by a dozen states seeking to halt its implementation.The rule, supported by environmental groups, provides a definition for which rivers, lakes and other water bodies may be regulated by federal agencies including the Environmental Protection Agency.Iowa was not one of the original states in the lawsuit, but Reynolds had asked the court to allow the state to join in.That would mean Iowa also could halt enforcement of the clean water rule until the issue is fully litigated in the courts.On Tuesday Judge Daniel Hovland granted Reynolds’ request.Reynolds says in a statement that “Iowa farmers and small business owners will not be burdened by this federal overreach while we continue fighting to permanently end the WOTUS Rule.”last_img read more

first_imgHow good was the Cowboy defense in Ft. Worth on Saturday?TCU’s drive chart should answer that:PuntPuntPuntTDPuntPuntPuntTurnover on downsPuntInterceptionTurnover on downsINTTurnover on downsAt this time last year, the Cowboys defense regressed due to injury and looked downright gassed. That was not the case on Saturday.In their eleventh game of the year, a week after giving up 44 points to Texas Tech, they looked fresh and controlled the line of scrimmage against TCU.Senior safety Jordan Sterns led the way with nine tackles, a tackle for loss and a pass breakup on third-and-six that forced one of TCU’s punts in the second quarter.Vincent Taylor continued his campaign for Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year with a disruptive performance. He added five tackles (two solo) and two tackles for loss. Aside from the numbers, Taylor was just everywhere. He was a big part of OSU’s dominance up front. He also added a blocked PAT.Vincent Taylor gets another block.— Pistols Firing (@pistolsguys) November 19, 2016Justin Phillips had another big game with five total tackles, assisted on a sack and a tackle for loss and got that big interception in the fourth quarter. Ramon Richards had a solid game with more than one big play that saved a TCU first down and added six solo tackles.TCU came into Saturday’s matchup with Oklahoma State averaging 510 yards per game, good for No. 12 in the nation. The Cowboys held the Frogs to just 343 total yards, their second-lowest all season. West Virginia held TCU to 300 yards in Morgantown.“We definitely got our butts kicked, it was embarrassing,” said TCU running back Kyle Hicks. “They came to our home turf and just straight up kicked our butt. But there’s nothing we can do about it. It was embarrassing.”The Cowboys never let Kenny Hill and TCU get going. A team that likes to establish the run game was held to 145 yards on 3.7 yards per carry, their second lowest average this season.Take away Hill’s 79 rushing yards and the rest of the Frogs only gained 66 yards on the ground at 2.0 yards per carry.The Cowboys defense controlled the game for all four quarters. When the Horned Frogs did look like they were getting a little momentum offensively, the Cowboys resorted to their league-leading ability to get turnovers, forcing Kenny Hill into two interceptions.The Horned Frogs made it into the red-zone just three times and came away with six total points to show for it. That was mostly because the Cowboys got three (!) stops on fourth down inside their own 25-yard-line. This was the Cowboy’s best defensive game of the year and it awards them a week off before travelling to Norman as a healthy team and a chance to play for the Big 12 championship (whispers) and possibly more.“First I will say this was the best defensive effort game plan; tackling against some tricky, skilled players that I’ve seen for a very long time,” said head coach Mike Gundy. “So we had one turnover, and TCU had two picks, we rushed the turnover and tackled well in space and that really sums up what happened.”Additional notes:• The Cowboys lead the Big 12 in turnover margin. With TCU included, they have 23 takeaways to just 14 lost.• On that note, OSU is now 6-1 when they win the turnover battle this season. Well, technically…. (CMU).• OSU is 7-0 since Glenn Spencer pulled up some real estate next to Mike Yurcich in the booth.• This was the lowest scoring total for TCU since they lost to Texas 30-7 back in 2013. It goes deeper than that, too.OSU held TCU 6 points, the fewest points scored by the Frogs since a 10-6 loss to SMU in 1998. #okstate— Dave Hunziker (@Gopokesvoice) November 19, 2016• If Barry J. Sanders doesn’t muff that punt in the first quarter the Cowboys may have pitched their first shutout since that 84-0 embarrassment of Savannah State in 2012.• The Cowboys have never shut out another Big 12 team. Their last in-conference shutout was that 12-0 Bedlam back in 1995 when both teams were in the Big 8.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

first_imgIndian Super League ISL Rules Explained: How can Kerala Blasters and Delhi Dynamos sign the eighth foreigner Last updated 2 years ago 05:27 14/9/2017 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments() René Meulensteen (Anzhi) PROSHOTS Indian Super League Odisha Kerala Blasters Only Kerala Blasters and Delhi Dynamos opted to sign seven foreign players for the 2017-18 ISL season… Eight of the 10 Indian Super League (ISL) franchises signed eight foreigners to be a part of their roster for the upcoming season. Only Delhi Dynamos and Kerala Blasters roped in seven foreign players, which was the minimum number each club had to sign on or before September 12.However, the two above mentioned franchises do have an opportunity to rope in the eighth foreign signing in January 2018.The ISL rules stipulate that the clubs can sign foreign players between January 1st and 31st. The point to note here is that the winter transfer window officially opens in India only on January 16th and shuts on February 15th. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing What this means is that a club can only sign/register a foreign player between January 1st and 15th 2018, i.e. before the transfer window opens, if his previous contract expired on or before August 31st.Those players whose contract expired after August 31st or need to be loaned from a foreign club can only be signed once the January transfer window opens in India.It must also be brought to light that by January 16th, each ISL franchise would have at least played eight-to-nine games in the season already.Whether Delhi Dynamos or Kerala Blasters exercise the option to sign the eighth foreign player or not remains to be seen.last_img read more

first_imgSerie A Pirlo: Montella & Bonucci need time to restore glory at Milan Sacha Pisani Last updated 2 years ago 08:47 10/9/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(1) Vincenzo Montella - cropped Getty Images Serie A Milan Internazionale v Milan The former AC Milan midfielder has pleaded for patience following the club’s slow start to the Serie A season Andrea Pirlo leapt to the defence of under-fire AC Milan head coach Vincenzo Montella and star recruit Leonardo Bonucci, insisting the pair need time to rejuvenate the Rossoneri.ACM 6/1 to win Europa LeagueMontella is under pressure at San Siro, having already tasted three defeats in seven Serie A matches before the international break, while €42 million signing Bonucci has been criticised for some of his performances. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. It was an off-season filled with change and promise as Milan’s new owners overhauled the squad by signing Italy international defender Bonucci, Lucas Biglia, Andre Silva, Hakan Calhanoglu, Andrea Conti, Ricardo Rodriguez, Mateo Musacchio, Franck Kessie, Nikola Kalinic and Fabio Borini.But former Milan midfielder Pirlo — who will retire at the end of the MLS season with New York City FC — has pleaded for patience.”I hope not,” the 38-year-old told Gazzetta dello Sport of the possibility that Montella could be sacked.”He has a new team. It takes time and confidence, even if the results do not come right away.”It’s normal that Bonucci does not make Milan like Juventus for now. They cannot expect that so soon.”He is the best defender in Italy and one of the strongest in Europe.”Milan — after back-to-back defeats in the league — face a blockbuster showdown against city rivals Inter on Sunday.last_img read more

first_imgShare on Twitter Ben Barba inspires leaders St Helens to another victory at Castleford Share on Pinterest Share on LinkedIn Share via Email … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Topics Warrington Read more Share on Facebook Share on WhatsApp Rugby leaguecenter_img “I read them a poem by Ebenezer Elliott,” Price said. “I can’t say what sort it was. It was something different. It was a one-off.” Whatever it was, it certainly worked and, with results elsewhere, it ensured the Wolves strengthened their grip on third, as well as moving to within two points of second-placed Wigan following their defeat at Hull place.As for Hull, though they were eventually well beaten as their inexperience told after half-time, this still felt like a night to be optimistic about their season moving forward. “I thought in the first 40 we played as well as we could have but unfortunately in the second half we just ran out of gas,” their coach, Lee Radford, said.It was hard to disagree with his assessment. Few could argue with the 12-point half-time lead Hull amassed through tries by Dean Hadley and Mickey Paea – and all this with almost a dozen first-team regulars absent. Things could get worse before they get better too; Jake Connor, Hull’s lynchpin of recent weeks, left the field here with a hamstring injury.With a Challenge Cup quarter-final against St Helens next Sunday, that is far from opportune timing. Price’s attempts at becoming Warrington’s first poet laureate certainly did the trick in regards to his own side, though; and by the hour mark they had forged into a lead that Hull’s young, tiring side were unable to overturn.Tries by the ever impressive Harvey Livett and Kevin Brown levelled the scores before Ben Murdoch-Masila put the hosts ahead, with Livett converting all three scores. He was also on target twice more in the final quarter, adding the extras to the tries scored by Josh Charnley and Ryan Atkins to ensure Warrington’s latest victory. Since you’re here… Share on Messenger Super League XXIII (2018) Hull FC By the end this felt like a night where there were grounds for optimism in both camps, despite the slightly lop-sided result. For Warrington there was the satisfaction not only of an instant return to winning ways but of a second-half performance which solidified their position inside Super League’s play-off places.With the side trailing 12-0 at half-time questions might have been asked of Steve Price and his side as they appeared destined for a second consecutive defeat. A run then of 30 points answered many of those questions but what prompted such a dramatic turnaround will not appear in too many coaching manuals. match reports Support The Guardian Reuse this content Super Leaguelast_img read more

first_img Support The Guardian Seems like it was Mark Wood’s bad luck to draw a short straw last week. The day after al-Jazeera released the second part of their investigation into spot-fixing in cricket Wood was put up to talk to the press. He said the accusations reminded him of “the boy who cried wolf”. Maybe Wood always used to fall asleep before his parents made it to the end of the book. Right now, five months after the first part of al-Jazeera’s expose, we are still waiting to see whether the danger they are shouting about really exists, but Wood, like everyone else in English cricket, will hope this story does not end with everyone looking the other way while the wolf eats up the sheep. Read more Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Topics Share on Pinterest Cricket Australia’s cricket culture review leaves reasons to be sceptical Share via Email Share on WhatsApp Jonny Bairstow is one bad series away from being under serious scrutiny Sam Perry International Cricket Council … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay. Whether we are up close or further away, the Guardian brings our readers a global perspective on the most critical issues of our lifetimes – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. We believe complex stories need context in order for us to truly understand them. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. At this point the question is not whether people are spot-fixing cricket matches but who is doing it and how often. In the last 10 years bowlers, batsmen, and captains, umpires, coaches, groundstaff and administrators have been caught and banned for fixing, and they have come from England, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, South Africa, Sri Lanka, New Zealand and Zimbabwe. You should not need any more evidence that this is a universal problem. But, if you do, Cricinfo published some last week. It was the story of a corrupt approach made to the Canadian wicketkeeper Hamza Tariq at the 2011 World Cup.Tariq explains how a friend of a friend invited him out for drinks. The man was a cricketer, which is how they got to know each other. When they went out a second time the man brought three more friends along. They bought Tariq dinner and drinks, and offered, later in the evening, to fix him up with a woman. It was only later, after an officer from the ICC’s Anti-Corruption Unit intervened, that Tariq realised they were grooming him. Tariq was a fringe player from an associate team but last I looked the weaknesses those fixers were trying to identify and exploit – fondness for drink, money, sex – are pretty common in countries where they play Test cricket, too.That 2011 World Cup, it seems now, fell right in the middle of an era when spot-fixing was rife. Mohammad Amir, Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif, Mervyn Westfield, Lou Vincent, Danish Kaneria: all those cases happened in 2010 and 2011. It was also around that time, al-Jazeera says, that Munawar first became involved in fixing. Since you’re here… Al-Jazeera’s second film was more grounded than the first. It’s built around the fact that its source, Aneel Munawar, accurately forecast the score in 25 out of the 26 passages of play in 15 different international matches. Al-Jazeera says independent analysis shows the odds he could have done that by guesswork alone are 9.2m to one. The case is not perfect; the one big problem with it is al-Jazeera’s lawyers do not seem to trust it enough to let its journalists release the names of the players involved. But there is enough evidence there now that the story should not be swiftly dismissed.Which, unfortunately, seems to be what some of the authorities want to do. The England and Wales Cricket Board said al-Jazeera’s information was “poorly prepared and lacks clarity and corroboration”. The tone of its response was all wrong. If the ECB wants to demonstrate how serious it is about tackling spot-fixing there are better ways to do it than shouting down the people who are presenting the evidence. The ECB’s statement seemed to put it on the other side of this problem to the journalists working to expose it. Since then the conversation around the investigation has turned into a slanging match about which side is more credible than the other.Al-Jazeera did not help by throwing back blows of its own. “The ICC, together with certain national cricket boards and their supporters in the media, has reacted to our documentary with dismissals and attacks on the messenger,” it said. “We are particularly struck by what appears to be a refusal from certain quarters to even accept the possibility that players from Anglo-Saxon countries could have engaged in the activities exposed by our programme.” That attitude may have been common once and there may still be lingering hints of it around now. But anyone who holds it is a fool. Reuse this content Read more Share on LinkedIn The Spin: sign up and get our weekly cricket email. comment Share on Messenger It also says the ICC has known about Munawar ever since, which is one reason why it is reluctant to hand over all the information it has but would prefer to give it to Interpol instead. “We have become increasingly concerned at the ICC’s ability and resolve to police the game.”It is not the only one to say this. Remember, Brendon McCullum criticised the ACU’s “very casual approach” in 2016. The head of the ACU, Alex Marshall, argues the unit is much stronger now and the sport has never invested so many resources in fighting corruption. But then, at the same time Marshall is saying that, the Pakistan Cricket Board has appoint Wasim Akram to its new cricket committee. Akram, you may remember, was one of a number of cricketers investigated by the Qayyum report into fixing in the 1990s. The Qayyum report concluded he “cannot be said to be above suspicion”.The PCB chairman, Ehsan Mani, was able to justify the appointment by arguing that other players who were named in the Qayyum report were allowed to carry on working in international cricket. And he is right. One of them, Mushtaq Ahmed, was England’s spin-bowling coach for years, even though Qayyum concluded “there are sufficient grounds to cast strong doubt” on him, too. At this point indignant words do not do much to demonstrate anyone’s commitment to taking the problem seriously enough.last_img read more

first_imgTransfers Barella to Juventus ruled out by Cagliari president Tom Webber 22:43 2/10/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) NicoloBarella - cropped Getty Images Transfers Juventus Cagliari Serie A The highly-rated midfielder will not be heading to the Serie A champions at the end of the season, says the Sardinian club’s supremo Tommaso Giulini Cagliari president Tommaso Giulini has ruled out midfielder Nicolo Barella leaving for Serie A champions Juventus at the end of the season.Barella, 21, was heavily linked with a move to the Bianconeri in January, with reports suggesting they were hoping to tie up a deal for a move ahead of the 2018-19 campaign.Giulini assures that no agreement was reached for the Italy Under-20 international, who he is confident will remain in Sardinia next season. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player “Barella is not a Juventus player,” the Cagliari president told l’Unione Sarda.”He is a Cagliari player for the next season and I honestly do not think he will go to Juventus even if he changes team.”Barella scored his first Serie A goal against SPAL last September and was called up to the Italy squad last October, but he is still awaiting his first senior international cap.last_img read more

first_imgUEFA Champions League Kane tops Ronaldinho & Drogba to make best ever Champions League scoring start Allen Ramsey Last updated 1 year ago 06:09 2/14/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(4) Harry Kane Tottenham Getty Images UEFA Champions League Harry Kane Juventus v Tottenham Hotspur Juventus Tottenham Hotspur The Spurs is unmatched through his first nine appearances in Europe’s top competition, topping the likes of the Ivorian and the Brazil legend Harry Kane has topped the likes of Didier Drogba and Ronaldinho by scoring his ninth goal in nine Champions League appearances. The Tottenham forward rounded Gianluigi Buffon and slid the ball into an open net to pull his side back to within a goal on Tuesday against Juventus, with Christian Eriksen completing the comeback in the 72nd minute to see the match end 2-2. Kane’s goal also equalled an English record for goals in a single Champions League campaign , pulling him level with Steven Gerrard on seven.  Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player But the goal also set the Spurs star apart from every other player in Champions League history. Didier Drogba, Ronaldinho, Simone Inzaghi and Diego Costa all notched eight goals in their first nine Champions League matches which, before Tuesday, was the record best start. But Kane’s incredible goal-scoring pace continued and he now stands alone atop the heap. The 24-year-old is also the leading scorer among all players in the top five leagues in Europe with 33 goals across all competitions this season. He also leads the Premier League with 23 goals scored this season, and trails only Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, who has nine, in Champions League goals this term. 9 – Harry Kane has scored more goals in his first nine Champions League appearances (9) than any player in the history of the competition, ahead of Ronaldinho, Simone Inzaghi, Didier Drogba & Diego Costa (8). Greatest. #JUVTOT #UCL — OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) February 13, 2018 Kane will get a chance to break the English record for goals in a single Champions League campaign in the second leg against Juventus, which will take place on March 7 in London at Wembley Stadium.last_img read more

first_imgPrimera División Why Real Madrid are getting back to their best Ben Hayward Last updated 1 year ago 07:09 2/27/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments() Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid Getty Images Primera División Espanyol v Real Madrid Real Madrid Espanyol Opinion Zinedine Zidane’s side have won five fixtures in a row for the first time this season and appear to be peaking just in time for their trip to Paris Real Madrid are finally getting back to their best. The 4-0 weekend win against Alaves was Los Blancos’ fifth in a row and continued an upturn in form for the European champions as they prepare to face Paris Saint-Germain away on March 6th.Zinedine Zidane’s side started the season with victory over Manchester United in the UEFA Super Cup and back-to-back wins over Barcelona in the Spanish Supercopa, while they also claimed the Club World Cup in December to finish 2017 with five trophies.But the titles masked an inconsistency that saw Real fall off the pace in La Liga and later crash out of the Copa del Rey as well, losing games to Betis, Girona, Barca and Villarreal in the Primera Division, with a surprise loss at Leganes in the cup and defeat to Tottenham in the Champions League. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Along the way, there have also been disappointing draws against Levante (twice), Spurs (at the Bernabeu), Numancia and Fuenlabrada (in the Copa at home, albeit with weakened sides) too.So Saturday’s win was as important as it was emphatic – a fifth straight success for the first time this season, following the victories over Real Sociedad (5-2), PSG (3-1), at Betis (5-3) and away to Leganes (3-1).The 4-0 win over Alaves means Madrid have scored 20 goals in those last five fixtures and there has been a clear improvement in form for Los Blancos in that time. So how has it happened?Cristiano Ronaldo’s goals have helped. The Portuguese scored only four times in the first half of La Liga, but has netted 10 times – more than any other player – in the second half of the competition already, despite sitting out the game against Leganes last week.Two of those strikes came in the win over Alaves, in which Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema were also on target, the French forward converting with a penalty after he was handed the ball by Ronaldo. It was the first time the three had netted all together in the same match since April 2016.Real Madrid five wins graphicBenzema and Bale were better on Saturday, but it was Marco Asensio and Lucas Vazquez who inspired Madrid’s win over PSG as they starred as late substitutes in the Champions League clash and those two – along with Mateo Kovacic – have also impressed since.Marcelo, currently out injured, was also back to his best in the game against PSG after what has been a poor campaign by his standards. The Brazilian was tireless that night and scored the third goal for Los Blancos to ensure the champions travel to Paris next week with a superb chance of progressing.Indeed, it was noticeable in the win over PSG that Madrid’s players were working harder. With La Liga out of reach and the Copa gone, they knew it was their last chance to claim some credit – and also some silverware – at the end of this season and it appeared that the focus and the drive had returned.Against Alaves, Madrid also managed to keep a clean sheet for the first time in nine games and Zidane was happy with his side’s performance in beating Abelardo’s in-form team.Karim Benzema Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid La Liga“Confidence returns with this type of games,” he said. “Since the PSG game we have been doing well, but we needed a match like this. We have to carry on in the same vein.”And he added: “The most important thing is the atmosphere in the dressing room. The group in this dressing room is top, the best there is. We have gone through some really complicated moments, but the dressing room is strong.”It is good news for Zidane. Defeat at home to PSG and the season would have been all but over, but his players reacted just in time and now have a shot at an unprecedented third successive Champions League crown. Don’t rule them out.last_img read more

first_imgManchester United ‘If you weren’t with me when I was pouring water on my cereal…’ – Lukaku not interested in Belgian detractors Chris Burton Last updated 1 year ago 22:26 6/18/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(1) Romelu Lukaku Manchester United Getty Images Manchester United Romelu Lukaku Belgium v Panama Panama Belgium Chelsea West Bromwich Albion World Cup Premier League A man who moved to Old Trafford for £75 million in the summer of 2017 believes many of his fellow countrymen are looking for him to fail Romelu Lukaku is a £75 million striker at Manchester United, but he claims a number of Belgians want him to fail and have laughed at some of his previous transfer choices.The 25-year-old was tipped for the top upon making the breakthrough in his homeland at Anderlecht, with his goalscoring instincts showcased early on.A switch to Chelsea in 2011 was to stunt his progress somewhat, but the decision to take in loan spells at West Brom and Everton helped to rekindle his spark and attract interest from afar. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now Arsenal would be selling their soul with Mourinho move An upward curve continued last summer as he made his way to Old Trafford, before recording 27 goals in his debut campaign for the Red Devils , but Lukaku has accused many of those back in Belgium of failing to offer him the expected level of support.He told The Players’ Tribune: “I don’t know why some people in my own country want to see me fail. I really don’t.“When I went to Chelsea and I wasn’t playing, I heard them laughing at me. When I got loaned out to West Brom, I heard them laughing at me.“But it’s cool. Those people weren’t with me when we were pouring water in our cereal. If you weren’t with me when I had nothing, then you can’t really understand me.”Lukaku endured a tough upbringing, but that only served to make him all the more determined to fulfil his dreams of becoming a footballer.He is now at the very top of his game, with a World Cup 2018 adventure with Belgium allowing him to chase down major honours while working with France and Arsenal legend Thierry Henry – a boyhood hero of his.Romelu Lukaku BelgiumLukaku added: “Man, listen – when we were kids, we couldn’t even afford to watch Thierry Henry on Match of the Day! Now we’re learning from him every day with the national team.“I’m standing with the legend, in the flesh, and he’s telling me all about how to run into space like he used to do.“Thierry might be the only guy in the world who watches more football than me. We debate everything. We’re sitting around and having debates about German second division football.“I’m like, “Thierry, have you seen the Fortuna Düsseldorf setup, though? He’s like, ‘Don’t be silly. Yes, of course’.“That’s the coolest thing in the world, to me.”Lukaku made the starting XI for Belgium in their World Cup opener against Panama on Monday and will be hoping to transfer his club form onto an international stage and silence any remaining critics.last_img read more

first_imgThe Hornsby Lions have won through to the NSWTA Vawdon Cup Men’s Premier League Grand Final after a thrilling win over the Penrith Panthers on Friday, 17 October 2008.An outstanding attacking game from Hornsby’s Willie Bishop set the scene for their progression to the Grand Final from third place. Close to the line, Bishop was unstoppable and slid over multiple times for touchdowns. The general of Hornsby’s attack was Dylan Hennessey who has present claims to be the leading male player in the country. Hennessey again had a great game backing up a week after disposing of a star studded Wests line-up including an in form Jason Stanton.Minor Premiers, the Penrith Panthers would be disappointed about consecutive losses but the future bodes well for future Vawdon Cup and their assault at State Cup. Ben Moylan was outstanding in both attack and defence for Penrith and was well supported by Nicholas Good.In the Mixed, the Central Coast ran riot over a depleted Roosters outfit. Nash Beeby and Harry Berryman were solid for the Coasties while Billy McMahon and a very tired Manu Wakely tried hard for Easts.In the Women’s Premier League, Canterbury defeated Easts to set-up and mouth watering repeat of the 2007 Grand Final against the Wests Magpies.The Grand Finals of the 2008 NSWTA Vawdon Cup will occur at Tempe on Friday, 24 October 2008 with fixtures as follows:Men’s Premier League: Canterbury Bulldogs v Hornsby Lions @ 9:30pm (Field One)Women’s Premier League: Wests Magpies v Canterbury Bulldogs @ 7:50pm (Field One)Mixed Premier League: Wests Magpies v Central Coast Dolphins @ 8:40pm (Field One)Men’s Division One: Wests Magpies v Penrith Panthers @ 7:00pm (Field One)Women’s Division One: Easts Roosters v Cronulla Sharks @ 8:40pm (Field Two)Mixed Division One: Liverpool Lightning v Cronulla Sharks @ 7:00pm (Field Three)Men’s Division Two: Varsity v Liverpool Lightning @ 7:00pm (Field Two)Women’s Division Two: Parramatta Eels v Penrith Panthers 1 @ 8:40pm (Field Four)Men’s Seniors: Wests Magpies v Penrith Panthers @ 8:40pm (Field Three)Men’s Masters: Penrith Panthers 1 v Manly Sea Eagles @ 7:00pm (Field Four)For further information, visit the NSWTA Vawdon Cup website – read more

first_imgAlexander-Arnold recovering quickly reveals Liverpool boss Kloppby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold is recovering quickly from a knock sustained against Napoli, Jurgen Klopp has confirmed. The 20-year-old missed Sunday’s win over Manchester United and will also miss Friday’s clash with Wolves.”It actually looks surprisingly good,” said Klopp. “I think Wolves will still be a bit too early but after that, they told me we can think about him.”But for that, he needs to train. So far he didn’t train but the pain goes down second by second, which is good, and then in the moment when he can deal with it, he is on the pitch, and in the moment he is on the pitch we’ll make a decision.”But it looks good for Trent.” About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

first_imgAston Villa move for Leicester defender Christian Fuchsby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveAston Villa have made a move for Leicester City defender Christian Fuchs.The Mirror says Villa are short of cover at left-back and boss Dean Smith has identified the former Austrian international as the man to help the club’s promotion push.Fuchs, 32, has been kept out of the picture at the King Power Stadium by Claude Puel’s decision to promote Ben Chilwell to the first-team.And that has paid off spectacularly as the home-grown youngster has progressed to England’s senior squad.Villa have Neil Taylor as their only recognised defender in that area and although Alan Hutton has deputised on that side in the Welshman’s absence through injury, it has upset the balance in Smith’s rearguard. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

first_imgFoden won’t follow duo out of Man Cityby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester City midfielder Phil Foden is confident his career can be fulfilled by staying put.Foden, who signed a £30,000-a-week deal last month which keeps him at the club until 2024, has seen Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund) and Brahim Diaz (Real Madrid) leave the club in the last 18 months.“We’ve got the best set of players and the best staff so I’m in the right position,” he said. “I’m learning off them every day, so I couldn’t be in a better place.”With regard to Diaz and Sancho, he added: “It’s up to them, really – they have gone their separate ways, and everyone has their own plan, in what they want to do, so fair play to them. Everyone is different, and I see myself playing here. It’s up to them, really.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

first_imgThe college football season is just over one month away, and while neither the AP Poll nor the Coaches’ Poll has been released, we do have one major indicator to take a look at – ESPN’s ‘Football Power Index.’ The Worldwide Leader has put together a formula that does its best to predict a team’s performance based on a number of factors, including strength of schedule. Here’s a quick definition of the measure:The Football Power Index (FPI) is a measure of team strength that is meant to be the best predictor of a team’s performance going forward for the rest of the season. FPI represents how many points above or below average a team is. Projected results are based on 10,000 simulations of the rest of the season using FPI, results to date, and the remaining schedule. Ratings and projections update daily.It won’t surprise anyone to see that Ohio State, which won last year’s College Football Playoff, is on top. The Buckeyes are followed by Alabama, Baylor, TCU and LSU. Georgia, Oregon, Texas A&M, Ole Miss and Arkansas round out the top ten. Here are the top 20, per ESPN. ESPN FPI RankingsESPNOddly enough, even though Alabama is ranked second, the Crimson Tide is predicted to win just 8.7 games – most likely because of its top-ranked strength of schedule. If you’re wondering, the team with the easiest schedule in the top 20 is Baylor. You can check out the entire Football Power Index here.last_img read more

first_imgUrban Meyer talks about the draft.UrbanFormer Ohio State defensive end Noah Spence did not hear his name called during the first round of the NFL Draft Thursday night. This surprised Spence’s former coach, Urban Meyer. Spence, who played at OSU for two seasons before having to transfer because of failed drug tests, is an “elite” defensive end, according to Meyer. The Ohio State coach placed him in a similar category to Joey Bosa, who was taken No. 3 overall. “I was kind of shocked he didn’t go yesterday,” Meyer said on the NFL Network. “I was kind of shocked he didn’t go yesterday,” Urban says of Noah Spence.— Andrew Holleran (@andrewjholleran) April 29, 2016Meyer also talked about how Spence was a 3.0 student at Ohio State and comes from a great family.The NFL Draft is currently airing on ESPN and the NFL Network. Spence is expected to go early in the second round.last_img read more

first_imgChelsea produced a toothless display as they were held to a 0-0 draw at home by struggling Southampton and lost Willian to injury in the process. Maurizio Sarri reinstated Alvaro Morata to the team with Olivier Giroud ruled out, yet the service to the Spaniard was poor as Saints dug deep to hold on for a well-earned point. A tame first half passed with few flashpoints, though Chelsea did see Willian forced off on the same day the club announced the signing of Christian Pulisic, who will arrive at the end of the season.  Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? The home side had a Morata goal controversially ruled out for offside late in the second half as they failed to win at home for a second successive outing, following on from a shock 1-0 reverse against Leicester City on December 22.It took Chelsea 33 minutes to craft their first meaningful opportunity, Eden Hazard finding space in the left side of the area and firing an effort which came back off the face of Premier League debutant Angus Gunn. Willian was forced off after a collision with Maya Yoshida a few moments later, further decreasing Chelsea’s depleted forward options. And while Sarri will no doubt wish Pulisic was available immediately, Willian’s replacement Ruben Loftus-Cheek looked lively. The England international set Morata up for a chance 12 minutes from time only for the former Real Madrid man to shoot straight at Gunn from a tight angle, shortly after he was adjudged to have strayed offside when finding the net.Chelsea’s desperation towards the end resulted in Marcos Alonso going down easily under pressure from Shane Long in the area, but referee Jonathan Moss correctly ignored the protests, allowing Saints to hold on. 22 – Angus Gunn (22y 346d) is the youngest English goalkeeper to start their first Premier League match since Jordan Pickford (21y 315d) on January 16th 2016 (for Sunderland vs Spurs). Saint.— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 2, 2019 What does it mean? Chelsea need reinforcementsSarri has made no secret of his desire to sign more players, and Wednesday’s match laid that issue bare. With Willian off injured, a glance at their bench showed precious little attacking talent. Hazard cannot be expected to do it all – he needs help in the fight to finish in the top four.Gunn silences disappointing ChelseaSarri’s men were far from their best, but when they did manage to test Gunn, the goalkeeper – who has patiently waited for his opportunity since joining from Manchester City – looked completely at ease on his first top-flight start.Barkley devoid of craftIt was by no means a surprise to see Ross Barkley hauled off just after the hour, as the England international did not offer a great deal of invention in midfield.Key Opta Facts- Southampton recorded their first Premier League clean sheet since October. Prior to the stalemate with Chelsea, they had conceded 24 goals in their previous 10 games.- Chelsea have failed to score in three of their last five Premier League games at Stamford Bridge, as many as in their previous 22 in the competition.- Southampton have drawn nine Premier League games by a 0-0 scoreline since the start of last season – two more than any other side.- Angus Gunn (1) has recorded more Premier League clean sheets at Stamford Bridge than his father Bryan (0 in 3 attempts) did in his entire career.- Cesc Fabregas came on in the second half for the Blues to make his 500th appearance for English club sides in all competitions.What’s next?After Saturday’s FA Cup visit of Nottingham Forest, Chelsea have an EFL Cup semi-final first leg with Tottenham before returning to Premier League action against Newcastle on January 12. Saints go to Derby in the FA Cup at the weekend, then travel to Leicester City a week later. read morelast_img read more

first_imgSanti Cazorla scored twice as Real Madrid failed to take full advantage of their game in hand on LaLiga leaders Barcelona in a frustrating 2-2 draw at relegation-threatened Villarreal.Los Blancos, back in action for the first time since winning the Club World Cup, appeared to be headed for three points as Karim Benzema and Raphael Varane cancelled out Cazorla’s crisp early opener by the 20th minute.But with just eight minutes remaining, Cazorla ghosted in to head Pablo Fornals’ teasing cross past Thibaut Courtois to secure a share of the spoils. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Madrid, who lost the ineffective Gareth Bale to injury at half-time, are consequently fourth and seven points behind leaders Barcelona after 17 matches, while Villarreal are out of the bottom three but remain level with 18th-placed Athletic Bilbao.FT: @Eng_Villarreal 2-2 @realmadrid Cazorla 4′, 82′; @Benzema 7′, @raphaelvarane 20’#Emirates | #HalaMadrid— Real Madrid C.F.  (@realmadriden) January 3, 2019Madrid had won their last three league matches without conceding but just four minutes had elapsed when Samuel Chukwueze picked out Cazorla, who curled the ball into the bottom-right corner for his first LaLiga goal since returning to the club in August.The lead lasted all of three minutes as Benzema headed a right-sided cross from Lucas Vazquez past Sergio Asenjo from eight yards and the turnaround was complete when Varane leapt highest to guide Toni Kroos’ deep free-kick back across goal.Luka Modric then converted from close range after Kroos had a shot kept out by Asenjo, only for the offside flag to cut short his celebrations.Madrid made a slow start to the second half but could have extended their lead on the hour, with Vazquez profiting from a favourable deflection but shooting right at Asenjo.That would prove a costly miss as Fornals delivered the ball into the back post for Cazorla to head past Courtois.An end-to-end conclusion to the match ensued, with Bale’s half-time replacement Isco forcing Asenjo into a late save with his bullet strike, but Villarreal earned a crucial point on their quest to dodge the drop and inflicted a big blow on their opponents’ outside title hopes. What does it mean? Madrid miss big chance to close gapA trip to a side sitting third-bottom of the division at the start of the game should have meant three simple points for Madrid, though this latest slip-up makes it just three wins from nine away LaLiga matches. After missing out on a fourth league win on the spin overall, Solari’s charges remain fourth in the division and have surely relinquished any slim hopes they had of challenging Barcelona for the title.Cazorla shows signs of his bestNot only did Cazorla score both of his side’s goals, the former Arsenal ace also chipped in with five key passes during the 90 minutes. The opening goal early on was special, working the angle well to send the ball out of Courtois’ reach, but he also showed great awareness in the final 10 minutes to get away from his man and guide Fornals’ cross from the left into the back of the net.Bale ineffective before injury scarePlenty of eyes were on Bale, who top scored for Madrid at the Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates last month, but he endured a frustrating opening 45 minutes here and did not emerge for the second half – the 15th time he has been replaced in LaLiga this term, more than any other player.The Wales forward failed to capitalise on some poor positioning from opposition right-back Miguel Layun and left the field with the lowest pass completion rate of any outfield Madrid player. After succumbing to another suspected calf problem, which twice required treatment before he was replaced by out-of-favour Isco, Bale’s playing time may be curtailed during a crucial period.Key Opta Facts: – Villarreal’s Santi Cazorla has scored his first brace in La Liga since September 2011 for Malaga against Granada, 2670 days ago. – Real Madrid are the LaLiga side with the most headed goals scored this season in all competitions (11) and their striker Karim Benzema is the player with the most headers (five).  – Benzema has scored 12 goals in 27 games this season in all competitions, as many as he did in the whole of last season (12 but in 47 games). – Cazorla has scored his first headed goal in La Liga (41 goals in total). – No other Real Madrid player has made more assists than Lucas Vazquez since the start of last year in all competitions (12, the same as Karim Benzema). What’s next?Both sides face a quick turnaround in fixtures as Madrid play host to Real Sociedad on Sunday, while Villarreal travel to Eibar on the same day. read morelast_img read more