Leicester’s players in spotlight

first_img Last-place Aston Villa are heading into their home match against Chelsea without a manager following the departure of Remi Garde on Tuesday. With seven games left, Villa are 12 points from safety and has only won three league games all season. MANCHESTER, England (AP): There have been considerable knock-on effects for Leicester following the team’s giddy rise to the top of the English Premier League. A ramping-up of global interest and adulation? Definitely. Qualification to the Champions League for the first time? Almost certainly, especially if the surprise leaders beat Southampton at home on Sunday. Then there’s growing international recognition for their star players. On Tuesday, England started with two Leicester players in this case, Jamie Vardy and debutant Danny Drinkwater for the first time in 42 years in the 2-1 loss to the Netherlands. And on the same night, N’Golo Kante, Leicester’s enforcer in central midfield, made his full debut for France on his 25th birthday and marked it by scoring one of the goals in a 4-2 win over Russia. “Things are going fast,” said Kante, who was playing for Caen in France’s second tier only three years ago. “I wouldn’t have said it was possible four or five years ago,” said Vardy, a goalscorer against the Dutch and a striker who once worked in a carbon-fibre factory. Leicester’s fans will be saying the same kind of things. After narrowly escaping relegation last season because of an incredible run of results in the final nine games, Leicester are mounting the most unlikely of title challenges and are five points clear of second-place Tottenham with seven games left. The club has never won a top-flight English league title. Training would have been unusually quiet for Leicester manager Claudio Ranieri over the recent international break, given the increased number of national-team call-ups. Ranieri, therefore, must reignite the team’s momentum from before the two-week hiatus ahead of the biggest six weeks in the club’s 132-year history. Southampton could be one of the toughest remaining opponents for Leicester, with the visitors from the south coast having won their last two games to climb within four points of the Champions League places. But Leicester are showing remarkable resilience under pressure, winning its last three matches 1-0. “They’ve been the best team this season, without question,” Alex Ferguson, a managerial great in English soccer, has told Sky Sports, “and they deserve to win it.” Tottenham would pile the pressure on Leicester by beating Liverpool tomorrow, a day before Leicester play. MAN CITY’S REINFORCEMENTS In danger of dropping out of the top four, out-of-form Manchester City have been handed a much-needed boost on the injury front. Three midfielders Samir Nasri, Kevin De Bruyne and Fabian Delph were back in training this week after long injury layoffs and could be in line to play against Bournemouth tomorrow. De Bruyne’s return after two months out with damaged ankle and knee ligaments is especially important for City, who have not scored in their last three matches and have been short of creativity. City broke their transfer record last August to sign De Bruyne for more than US$77 million. City are in fourth place the final Champions League qualification position and only one point ahead of West Ham and Manchester United. West Ham host Crystal Palace tomorrow and Manchester United are at home to Everton on Sunday. MANAGERLESS VILLAlast_img read more

Neymar wants Barcelona return, says club’s vice-president

first_img0Shares0000Neymar wants Barcelona return, says club’s vice-presidentBARCELONA, Spain, June 27 – Brazilian superstar Neymar wants to return to Barcelona two years after quitting the club to join Paris Saint-Germain, Barcelona’s vice-president said Thursday.“What is correct, at the current time, what I have read, what I have heard, which seems exact, is that Neymar wants to come back to Barcelona,” Jordi Cardoner told a press conference at the Camp Nou. But he stressed that Barcelona had made no contact so far with the world’s most expensive footballer who joined the French champions for 222 million euros ($252 million).For the moment the club acknowledged Neymar’s interest in returning to Barcelona but said there was no recruitment effort on their part to resign him.“To say that Barça is working on recruiting Neymar, that is something I cannot agree with,” Cardoner said.“For the moment all that is happening — and not only with Neymar — is that a number of players would like to play for a great club like Barcelona. We will see what happens in timely fashion.”“We are currently working on the phase of deciding which players we will not be keeping on next season,” said Cardoner.“We are recruiting no-one at the moment, especially not this player (Neymar) with whom we have had no contact.”However, media reports indicated that intermediaries between PSG and Barca had hammered out the terms of the deal which would free the Brazilian star to return to Barcelona this summer.According to other Spanish media reports this week, Neymar has offered to take a pay cut of 12 million euros a year to return to the club and Barca have reached a ‘verbal agreement’ to take him back.The 27-year-old spent four years at Camp Nou, winning the Champions League in 2015 and two La Liga titles in a potent attacking trio alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.Any return for Neymar would likely require Barca to raise funds through sales. Antoine Griezmann is expected to join from Atletico Madrid for 120 million euros while Frenkie de Jong has already signed for 75 million euros from Ajax.The pay cut would see Neymar’s salary clipped from around 36 million euros at PSG to the 24 million euros he received at Barca prior to his departure in 2017, according to the reports.0Shares0000(Visited 3 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Finally, army promotes Olympic silver medallist Vijay Kumar; promises commissioned officer’s post next

first_imgThe Indian Army promoted its ace shooter Subedar Vijay Kumar , who won silver medal at the London Olympics , to the rank of Subedar Major on Thursday.Kumar was granted the much-awaited double promotion as it was due for his past performances well before he clinched the Olympic medal earlier this month. Kumar had cried foul on not being given his due by his employer. He had expressed resentment for being ignored for promotion despite bringing laurels to the nation on several occasions.The army announced the promotion for Kumar during a felicitation event honouring its Olympic heroes in the national capital earlier on Thursday morning.The Himachal Pradesh shooter had sparked a row when he publicly hit out at his employers for failing to recognise his achievements. His cause was supported by Sports Minister Ajay Maken and Defence Minister A.K. Antony.Recognising the shooter’s immense contributions, the army honoured him by handing him his much due promotion to douse the raging controversy and also promised to make him a commissioned officer in the near future.Army chief General Bikram Singh, who announced the double promotion for the ace shooter, said, “This commission has to be granted by the President and certain rules have to be followed. We will provide all help to him as he is very capable… He is very educated and has the capabilities to become an officer. We will further strengthen his capabilities to make him a commissioned officer.”Content with the recognition of his achievements, Kumar said the army has promised him a bigger rank in the next six months and he would wait for that.advertisementlast_img read more

Yeng Guiao says late foul cost NLEX the game vs NorthPort

first_imgCayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess “I’m actually happy with our effort. We played without an import but we had a chance to win the game in the last one or two possessions,” Guiao told reporters.“We got a really ugly break. I don’t think the foul on Kyles Lao was something that you should call in a situation like that. That’s a really bad call and it cost us the game.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsThe foul resulted to NorthPort guard Nico Elorde making one of two free throws that gave the Batang Pier a 79-77 edge.“I’m not surprised that people are complaining about the officiating. My problem with that call is (technical director) Eric Castro justified it,” said Guiao, who also got a technical foul for arguing the call. “I think that’s stupidity. That is a stupid way to justify that call. They justified it by saying there was contact. The problem is not all contacts are foul. To me, that is a stupid way to justify that.” PDEA chief backs Robredo in revealing ‘discoveries’ on drug war Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Serbian star Nikola Jokic to play in 2019 Fiba World Cup DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Catholic schools seek legislated pay hike, too ‘Rebel attack’ no cause for concern-PNP, AFP “Sobrang nipis. And previous to that action, if they want to call a foul, we just watched the tape, Sean Anthony was climbing all over the back of Kenneth Ighalo. They did not call that but they called an itsy bitsy physical contact. To me, that’s not justifiable.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next MOST READ Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netMANILA, Philippines—NLEX head coach Yeng Guiao was left with mixed emotions after his team’s sorry loss to NorthPort in the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Saturday.Guiao said he was pleased with the Road Warriors’ showing despite the 83-79 setback having played minus an import, but at the same time, furious over a foul called against his guard Kyles Lao with 52 seconds left.ADVERTISEMENT Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIES Two-day strike in Bicol fails to cripple transport View commentslast_img read more