Shedding its initial hesitation, the Odisha government on Thursday decided to be a part of the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi scheme and extend all support for its implementation in the State, a senior official said. The announcement was made on a day when a leading farmers’ body — Navnirman Krushak Sangathan — called for dawn-to-dusk strike against the State government’s “lack of concern” towards its demands.Chief Secretary A.P. Padhi said the Central scheme (PM-Kisan), which promises to provide ₹6,000 per annum to small and marginal farmers having cultivable land up to two hectares (about five acres), will be launched in Odisha on February 24, along with the other States.Earlier, after receiving a formal communication from the Centre about the mega farmers’ welfare scheme, the Odisha government had not shown any interest and dubbed it inferior to its own Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA), also meant for providing financial assistance to farmers.Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan had said that the State was not implementing the Centre’s scheme for farmers over fears that all credit would go to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had on Wednesday attacked Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for depriving the farming community from taking advantage of the central scheme.Agriculture and Farmers Empowerment Secretary Saurabh Garg said a list of around 12.45 lakh first-phase beneficiaries of the State government’s KALIA scheme will be given to the Centre for inclusion in PM-Kisan.According to PM-Kisan, the first tranche of ₹2,000 will be directly transferred to the beneficiaries’ bank accounts on February 24. The Centre will fund this initiative completely.Peaceful protestNormal life across Odisha was affected on Thursday due to the farmers’ strike. Though the protest — backed by the Congress as well as the BJP — continued peacefully, the police picked up about 200 protesters from different parts of the State, including 70 from Bhubaneswar.Holding placards and raising anti-government slogans, agitating farmers blocked roads in the city as well on national highways, prompting the police to undertake preventive arrest of the farmers.“We have made elaborate security arrangements to maintain law and order in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack,” Commissioner of Police Satyajit Mohanty told reporters.Mr. Mohanty claimed normal life in the twin cities of Bhubaneswar and Cuttack remained largely unaffected by the strike. Government offices continued to function with adequate attendance, but educational institutions, major shops and business establishments remained closed and public transport vehicles were off the roads.Situation in Ganjam, Bhadrak, Jagatsinghpur, Kandhamal and Koraput districts remained by and large peaceful.NNKS leader Akshya Kumar alleged that the State government did not pay any heed to their demands for fair price, pension and prestige to cultivators, forcing them to call the strike.Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) chief Niranjan Patnaik, in a Twitter post, said, “Our ‘annadatas’ (providers of food) have suffered a lot due to the anti-farmer policies of the BJD and the BJP. Odisha Congress supports the bandh called by the farmers.” Odisha Agriculture and Finance Minister S.B. Behera termed the agitation “unfortunate”. “The timing is very wrong as it is being observed a day before the annual high school examinations… The strike has put mental pressure on students. It’s even more saddening that two national political parties have extended their support to the bandh,” Mr. Behera said.Authorities at Utkal University and Shree Jagannath Sanskrit University said they have postponed examinations scheduled for Thursday.
Ancajas, who was impressive in a 10th round stoppage of Mexican Israel Gonzalez on Feb. 4 in Corpus Christi, Texas, will be staking the 118-pound title for the fifth time against Sultan, the mandatory challenger.According to head trainer Joven Jimenez, who was in Tokyo to man the corner of Ernesto Saulong in his quest for the International Boxing Federation junior featherweight title of Japanese Ryosuke Isawa Thursday night, they’re ready to stake the title against Sultan.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutAncajas (29-1-1 with 20 knockouts) has already started light training at Survival Camp in Magallanes, Cavite, and Jimenez said MP Promotions matchmaker Sean Gibbons is headed for Los Angeles to finalize the details.This will be the first time since 1925, when Pancho Villa defended his flyweight title against Clever Sencio, that two Filipinos will dispute a world crown. John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding View comments Google honors food scientist, banana ketchup inventor and war hero Maria Orosa LATEST STORIES Read Next Boxer Jerwin Ancajas. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netThe all-Filipino world title fight between Jerwin Ancajas and Jonas Sultan will happen sooner than expected.With Manny Pacquio shunning a fight with Mike Alvardo in the undercard of the WBO welterweight crown showdown between Australian champion Jeff Horn and American Terence Crawford on April 14, Ancajas has been tapped by Top Rank to take over the vacated slot.ADVERTISEMENT Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Petron overpowers Smart MOST READ Pussycat Dolls set for reunion tour after 10-year hiatus Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university PLAY LIST 01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH 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 City Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. AFP official booed out of forum LOOK: Iya Villania meets ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ cast in Mexico Families in US enclave in north Mexico hold sad Thanksgiving
James Washington exploded for 103 yards receiving on Saturday, including an impressive one-handed touchdown reception.In a postgame interview with Orange Power Studios’ Allison Gappa, Washington talks about how the homecoming tragedy was handled by the team and says it was a “motivation killer.”Gappa also mentions the fact the team is now 7-0 and asked about his amount of pride he has in his team that is still undefeated.“I’m proud, everyone on this team puts in a great amount of work every week. Off the field, we’re working. When we’re 7-0 like this, the sky’s the limit,” he said. Check out the full interview with Allison Gappa below:AdChoices广告 While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
Coach had a lot to say this week! Spends some time on Dak Prescott, Patty Mahomes, talks pass coverage, reveals some information (finally) on Ateman, and talks virtual reality!Opening Remark• “We had a good practice last night and the players have recovered from the win. So we’re back at it.”Previewing The Raiders• “Next week we’ve got a good challenge with Texas Tech to try and minimize their scoring and continue to play well on offense.”• On Patty Mahomes…“Their quarterback’s a really, really good player, as we all know, I’m not saying anything everybody doesn’t know. I think he’s a potential first-round pick. He reminds me a lot of Dak Prescott. We played Dak when he was at Mississippi State. He was younger at that time but the style of play, body, strength, speed, ability to run, throw it, in different positions reminds me a lot of him.”• “So, we’ve got a great challenge. We’re a pretty healthy football team. Attitude of our players is really good. So, we need a good week, get a lot of good work in, and be ready to go on Saturday.”• Playing Tech, how hard is it to balance knowing you can score a lot of points against your frustrations with your defense? “Well, you can’t look at this game any different than any other game. We have to try and minimize big plays on defense. On offense we have to execute and be sound in our game plan. We need to improve on special teams from last week. And then you just have to get into the flow of the game.”• Is controlling the clock with your ground game part of your plan with Tech? Great answer: “If you could run the ball and eat the clock and score, it works good. But if we’re not scoring, it doesn’t work good.”• Trying to talk Gundy’s language here: How good is No. 9, wide receiver Jonathan Giles? “They have a number of guys – always have, for years and years – players that can make plays. They understand the system and they’re really talented players. There’s a number of those guys that can do it and Mahomes makes it go.”• This is so great! The question is being asked, ‘Mahomes was great against OU…’ and someone walked in unexpectedly… “Who was that? I thought it was like, a Secret Service guy or something. I know the election’s tomorrow and I thought maybe everybody’s getting nervous. Sorry about that…”• Anyway, back to the question. What can we learn from the OU game? “With about ten minutes to go in the game, it looked like there was just complete exhaustion on the field. When that happens, college football players get out of place a lot. And, just from an outsider lookin’ in, I think that’s what happened a lot in that game.”• “The Xs and Os part of defending these spread offenses with good quarterbacks is not very complex. You either rush three, four or five; you either play two-deep, three or man; you can do a little zone blitzing. Then you have to rally to the ball and defeat blocks to get pressure on the quarterback and you have to tackle well in space.” Seems like a lot to me!On Senior Day• Talk about your two-year guys: “We’ve not brought as many in as we had years ago. I think we’ve done a pretty good job of evaluating them, their character, and how they will fit into our program – whether they’ll make that adjustment with the structure we have. We’ve had a really good percentage of success. Like Chris (Carson) this year, once he got back from his injury, up to this point he’s been really good for us. It’s a little bit of a risky business just based on our system and how we are with accountability and our structure. We don’t vary much here.”• Talk about these seniors: “Fortunately we’re graduating a group that won a lot of football games and has been involved in a lot of success. Out APR numbers, once we got fourth and fifth year seniors under control, guys that were going to try out for the NBA – not the NBA, the NFL – I was thinking about the Thunder playing well last night…our APR’s gone through the roof. So, they’re doing everything right. They’re very loyal to this program. We’ve been loyal to them and that’s what’s created this environment.”• On Devonte Averette, in particular: “He’s a pretty unique individual. We don’t get a lot of players from Detroit down here. He led the nation in junior college in tackles his last year there. His first six months wasn’t as smooth as what you’d want to be just because of the different environment here. Since then he’s been great. He’s very loyal, he’s an extremely hard worker and he’s been a tough, competitive athlete for our team.”• Grant Newell, a walk-on, is going to be celebrated on Senior Day: “We should’ve used him earlier. We put him out there (on special teams) and he’s been very effective. I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart for guys who were willing to walk on and do it for free. There’s a tremendous price that has to be paid to play on our team and it’s year-round. Some guys do it because they love the game, like Grant. Some guys do it because they love the game, but they also do it for the free money – the scholarship.” Careful talking about “free money” there, Coach. We’ll be seeing Thayer around…• And on Ateman’s redshirt: “We could practice him this week some on about a 75 percent basis, then we could work him next week, and there would be a good chance he could play. But, there’s the chance he might not feel like playing. So we got to this conclusion…everything’s fine, but you could still set yourself back. I don’t think the number of games he could play full-speed compared to the future he has in this game is worth it.” Absolutely!About the Offense…• Are you worried about Justice Hill hitting that freshman wall? “I think he’s already gone through it. He got hit (Saturday) from a couple different angles, and then the weight on his shoulders pushed him backwards, so I think it scared him. That’s fairly common in that situation. He’s doing really well.“His practice habits are great. He didn’t break loose Saturday, but I still think he’s in a really good physical condition right now and that that could happen at any time. Good question though. I was wondering the same thing when he came out.”• Having Carson back has helped: “He’s helped us. I mentioned that when Chris came back – we needed him to take 12-14 carries away and Chris is running good. Chris is playing good. Those runs he had in that last drive were pretty impressive.”About the Defense…• Where is your level of confidence with your team’s pass coverage? “I think we’ve given up more big plays over the top than I would’ve wanted this year. If you eliminate those and play in the intermediate part of the field, we’ve been ok. In playing these guys you have to be sound in 3-man, 4-man and 5-man pressure, in my opinion.” Isn’t that the case with everybody we play?• On creating turnovers: “They’ve gotten turnovers at key times. When their backs were against the wall, they’ve played pretty well. We need more consistency throughout the middle part of the game. 65 percent of the game is played under normal circumstances, so we need to play better in those situations.”• “Playing against Tech and Mahomes, we have to be consistent in our pass rush.” This is awesome: “We also have to understand that, it may seem like your biological clack is going off as a pass rusher, but it may not be over, with his ability to move around and extend plays.”• What’s up with Vili Leveni? “He has an Achilles injury. You know, they repair it and move forward. He’s had two of them now, so I would say at this time, he’s going to repair it and start to rehabilitate it and move forward. In 4-5 months he will have to make a decision on what he wants to do with his future.” That’s too bad.This…on using Virtual Reality in Recruiting…• “That was our social media people, myself, our recruiting office – we have meetings in the off season and try and look way out into the future and see what would be something new. It’s been really good for us.”• “It allows you to take a setting from campus, from everyday lifestyle – where our players live, everything that we use in recruiting, game day, The Walk, the fans – and put it into a story and people that may not be able to get here and see it, they can see it. It gives them a good feel of what it’s like to be in that environment.”In Closing…on the 2:30 Kick and NO Night Games• “2:30’s a good time, now. You get a lot of television audience. It is unusual, but television dictates a lot of what happens. We have the big Fox contract, right, and they had the World Series. That played a big role.”• “The 2:30 kick is usually really, really good for Stillwater. Most everybody can get here in time for The Walk. It gives them a chance to tailgate for a couple hours. It also allows the families that have to travel an hour, hour and a half, a chance to get home before it’s too late when they have little kids. So, I think it’s a good starting time for us.”• Did you have a kick time preference when you were a player? “Honestly, I can’t remember that far back.” While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
Dixon rushed for more than 1,500 yards last season as a junior that garnered him a ton of attention in SEC country, but the attention has tapered of late. LSU, Minnesota, and OSU are the only schools to get on board of late, but it seems clear that his early offers from the blue-chip schools have been put on hold. OSU is likely aiming to swoop in and get his attention midway through the process, doing so with its recently hired running backs coach John Wozniak. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. Oklahoma State’s recent success in finding offensive weapons in Georgia has the Pokes fishing in similar territory, as 2018 running back Lyn-J Dixon, a 2018 prospect from Butler, Georgia, announced an offer from OSU this week.A three-star prospect, Dixon’s recruiting credentials don’t quite match his offer sheet. Although considered the 401st best prospect nationally in his class and 25th best running back, prominent schools like Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, and others have hopped on board for the speedster.
Our big board series featuring some of OSU’s top targets on a position-by-position basis continues today with a look at who is floating on the radar for the Cowboys along the defensive front — both at defensive tackle and defensive end.Tyler Lacy sealed one spot of need as an edge rusher when he became one of the many who committed over the last month, and the Sachse defensive end likely won’t be the last one Joe Bob Clements hauls in before signing day.Let’s have a look at the remaining targets for now, but based on this list and how Clements has recruited in the past, I’d also keep an open mind for names to emerge on this list later in the summer and into fall. He has a knack for unearthing hidden gems under big boulders.Quarterback | Running back | Wide Receiver | Linebacker |Israel Antwine — Defensive tackleLocal defensive tackle Israel Antwine of Millwood High School is a solid option at defensive tackle for 2018, and perhaps one of the biggest high school names still available that might be a viable option. He’s a late riser on the recruiting trail but at 6-foot-3 and 286 pounds he’s a legit target and a local area kid.The downside with Antwine is that he’s getting the full court press elsewhere. He told Pistols Firing that Texas, Ole Miss, Missouri and Memphis are currently recruiting him the hardest.Tate Wildeman — Defensive endWildeman was a bit of a wild card when OSU offered him a scholarship. The Colorado native is a 6-foot-5 edge rusher who, at the time of his OSU offer, was a relative unknown. Iowa, Arizona State, Nevada, and Nebraska have all offered since — and he’s a current Nebraska pledge.At this point with Lacy in the fold, I think OSU and Wildeman will likely cool. The 2018 class won’t be big on defensive ends, perhaps two at the most, so OSU might file this offer away for now until signing day gets closer and the staff reassesses their scholarship count. Wildeman doesn’t seem to me to be a must-get prospect — and OSU might have the luxury to be picky here.Tayland Humphrey — Defensive tackleThe self-proclaimed best defensive tackle in the country is Tayland Humphrey, a 6-foot-5, 350-pound run-stuffer who is a beast of a prospect. Humphrey, who is with Hutchinson Community College in Kansas, is originally from Klein Oak, Texas, and has been on the OSU radar for quite some time. He has offers from nearly 25 schools that includes OSU, Texas A&M, Arkansas, Louisville, Alabama, Florida State and others. Because Humphrey is a junior college prospect, he’d be an immediate plug-and-play guy in the middle where OSU has had success with a long line of junior college guys like Mote Maile, Calvin Barnett and Ofa Hautau.As a freshman last season for Hutch, Humphrey had 32 tackles, 1.5 sacks and eight tackles for loss. He’ll be done with his two-year degree in December, so he could be an early enrollee at his next destination. He will have three years to play two following the 2017 football season.Alton Robinson — Defensive endRobinson is a former Texas A&M signee who failed to qualify and is eligible to jump back up to Division for 2018. He’s a hard-hitting pass-rusher from NEO in Miami (Miam-uh) and to this point, has garnered surprisingly little interest. His offers include OSU, Colorado State and Kentucky.Robinson collected 67 tackles at NEO and 14 sacks to lead the Southwest Junior College Football Conference last season. Should he qualify, OSU might have the inside track. He’s already made an unofficial visit to Stillwater during last football season. But the cat might be out of the bag if he puts up similar production as he did as a freshman for NEO last season again as a sophomore. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
The Reload is PFB’s recruiting recap catching you up to speed with the latest Oklahoma State recruiting news, with an ear to the ground for what to expect.2019 QB Grant Gunnell commits to Texas A&MOklahoma State’s top target at quarterback in the 2019 class, Grant Gunnell, committed to Texas A&M this week over OSU and dozens of other offers.Gunnell is rated as the No. 2 pro-style quarterback in the country and a top-60 national recruit.“A&M feels like home to me,” Gunnell told Scout. “This university I love it, the academic side of it, I feel like even if I was not playing football I would want to go to it.”OSU and Mike Yurcich had been recruiting Gunnell from the jump and made a big impression on an unofficial visit in the process. But Mikey Y. must now move down his board that includes Grant Tisdale and Bo Nix.Big name recruits visit Oklahoma State for campAmong the heralded recruits who visited this week for camp were 2018 OSU quarterback commitment Spencer Sanders, 2019 defensive end target Marcus Hicks, 2018 safety commitment Kanion Williams, 2018 defensive tackle target and Ole Miss pledge Israel Antwine, and 2018 cornerback target Eddie Smith.Sanders has been a longtime firm OSU pledge; Hicks, a Kansas-area recruit, holds offers from a dozen schools including OU; Eddie Smith, a Louisiana cornerback, is tops on the OSU radar and could be nearing a decision soon.We’ll have more on Eddie Smith later this week. But just that list alone is a sign of a rising tide in Stillwater as the Class of 2018 continues its rise in the national recruiting rankings, with more potentially on the way.2018 WR Gabe Lemons offered by OSUFollowing an unofficial visit, 2018 wide receiver Gabe Lemons of Coppell reported a scholarship offer. Lemons is a 6-2 talent whose offer list includes Illinois, Air Force, Rice and Texas State.As you can see, OSU is now the 247Sports crystal ball favorite for him. As a junior last season, Lemons exploded on the scene with 616 yards, 43 receptions and 7 touchdowns.2019 WR Jeffery Carter offered by OSUAnother pass-catching talent offered this week is Jeffery Carter, a 2019 talent from Aledo. The 6-foot speedster has exploded in the past week with offers from Texas Tech, Illinois, Baylor and now OSU.Carter had 217 yards last season for Aledo but is bound for a big junior season for the Texas powerhouse. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
Swansea City 2 Sheffield Wednesday 0: Ayew and Dyer see Swans into quarters Dom Farrell 06:00 28/2/2018 Getty Images Swansea won a third consecutive FA Cup replay as second-half goals from Jordan Ayew and Nathan Dyer put paid to Sheffield Wednesday. Jordan Ayew came off the bench to help Swansea City past injury-hit Sheffield Wednesday 2-0 and into the quarter-finals of the FA Cup.Following a goalless initial encounter at Hillsborough, Tuesday’s return was another cagey encounter and Swansea boss Carlos Carvalhal saw his Premier League side create little of note during the first half versus his former employers.But Swansea’s top scorer Ayew came on at the interval and poached his ninth of the season before Nathan Dyer quashed Wednesday’s dwindling hopes 10 minutes from time. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp A 4-1 thrashing at Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday put Swansea back in the Premier League relegation zone and they were arguably second best in the first half at the Liberty Stadium.Kristoffer Nordfeldt parried Jacob Butterfield’s swerving shot from outside the area just before the half hour and the Swansea keeper reacted sharply to keep out Jordan Rhodes’ diving header from Lucas Joao’s cross.Sam Clucas’ improvised overhead kick was as close as Swansea came before the break and they were grateful for Nordfeldt’s assured handling after the marauding Joao cut inside Kyle Bartley9 – Swansea City are unbeaten in the previous nine competitive games in which Jordan Ayew has scored for them (W7 D2 L0). Charmed. pic.twitter.com/mPPHy1e23Q — OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) February 27, 2018 Carvalhal elected to send on Martin Olsson and Ayew in a double change that paid dividends when Tom Carroll’s 55th-minute drive remarkably struck both posts, leaving the Ghana international to snaffle the rebound.Dyer ensured a home tie against either Tottenham or Rochdale in round six when he sprung the Wednesday offside trap – a VAR referral fell in the winger’s favour – to slide home Tammy Abraham’s pass.
MLS Media Microscope: Examining Major League Soccer’s 2018 TV coverage Seth Vertelney Last updated 1 year ago 23:00 2/3/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) MLS Goal spoke with the league’s two English-language TV partners in the United States to get a preview of what to expect in the upcoming season Major League Soccer’s television ratings were up in 2017, and that counts as a small victory in a landscape that has recently not been kind to other professional sports leagues.Of course, MLS still lags behind other professional sports leagues in the United States in terms of ratings, but growth of any kind in today’s sports TV world counts as a minor win.In order to maintain that growth, the league’s two English-language American TV partners are looking to improve the quality and content in their broadcasts, while making plans outside of the match coverage itself to draw in more viewers on both linear and digital formats. Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Ahead of the 2018 MLS season Goal spoke to coordinating producer of Fox Soccer Maleek Ndile, and ESPN’s lead soccer producer Chris Alexopoulos about their networks’ plans for the new season.What stories will Fox and ESPN be looking to tell on the editorial side in 2018?Ndile: I think LAFC is the big story out there. I think fans want to see how they’re going to come into this league. They have a big coach who is a former national team coach in Bob Bradley, they have these shiny new digs right in the heart of downtown LA, it’s LA so that’s obviously a glamour story and then you have the ownership group – when you have names like Magic Johnson, Will Ferrell, Nomar Garciaparra, Mia Hamm, it’s just a glamour club.We’re blessed to have the first LA derby between LAFC and the Galaxy (March 31 on Fox) so that’s one of the highlights of our schedule.Alexopoulos: For us LAFC coming into the league – it’s who we have for our opener on Sunday (at Seattle, 5 p.m. ET on ESPN). The new team with a new stadium and a new fan base and the fantastic crowd will always get attention out of the box.We have to be really smart about what we’re saying about Columbus and what’s happening there and whether they’re going to move or not and how that’s being reported. That’s going to be a big story for us as we move forward.I think an interesting thing that people have been talking about the last couple weeks are the gaps that are starting to form between the top of the league and the bottom of the league in terms of spending and the effect that that has on the field.The fourth thing would be, is Zlatan Ibrahimovic going to come to MLS? What other big players are potentially coming throughout the year?Ndile: The one thing that we brought to the league last year was what we did with expected goals and Opta. We kind of just crawled with that last year but this year I think we’re going to try to be a little more out there with our Opta expected goals.We’re going to try and get that in productions live as the games are going on so fans can see and really understand what expected goals is, so we’re going to really try and integrate that into our productions more.What innovations will Fox and ESPN be looking to use on the technical side in 2018?Ndile: Another thing that will add to our productions is the Movi cam, which is a stabilizing handheld camera [that] allows us to get really clear and good shots of walkouts and some low-angle field shots, whether it be corner kicks, behind the goal. It allows us to push the boundaries that you don’t really get to see with a handheld camera, so we’re really excited to be able to use the Movi cam a little bit more this season. We started with it two years ago but now we’re going to see a little bit more of it.Click HERE for examples of Fox’s usage of the Movi cam in MLS broadcasts.Alexopoulos: From a technology standpoint we still are really proud of our goalpost cameras. We’re the only broadcaster in the entire world that does this. For us it’s something that continues to pay dividends as we use it more and more.MLS 9/11/16 Goal post cam from Chris on Vimeo.I think the one thing we will do a little bit more of this year is we’re going to use a few more POV cameras in interesting places. We have six POV cameras, four of which are in the goalposts and two of which are in the back of the goal that you stick through the net. So we have the goal covered and I think our biggest thing this year is that we’re adding another POV camera and potentially more than that.We’re going to be playing around with where that sits and how it can best help the viewer. Major League Soccer gives us a lot of leeway to try new things as long as it doesn’t impede on the actual game coverage. In England, you can’t put a camera in a place that isn’t really standard. You can’t just say, ‘We’re going to try this’ and this camera is going to be on the endline on a 20-foot pole looking down right over the goal. That’s something that we’d like to try this year with one of our POVs.Cue Ball POV from Chris on Vimeo.For ESPN, the biggest change this season is the integration of the MLS Live platform into the new streaming ESPN+ service. The MLS Live service was priced at $79 a year, while the new ESPN streaming product will be $5 a month, or $60 annually.ESPN will now have the exclusive streaming rights to all out-of-market MLS games, and subscribers to ESPN+ will have access to additional soccer content, as well as other sports on the ESPN+ platform.Alexopoulos: I think that’s the biggest thing that will be different from ESPN this year is taking that package and seeing what additional content will come through that package and how that changes the availability and coverage.For the first time, Fox will have the broadcast rights to the World Cup this summer. The network is hoping to receive a major ratings boost when they feature five MLS games on over-the-air Fox over the course of four weekends, all of which will have World Cup matches as lead-ins – including the World Cup final followed by Atlanta United vs. Seattle on July 15. How Fox integrates MLS promotion in its World Cup coverage will be a key aspect of how much of a ratings boost it gets.Ndile: We’re excited that we’re going to be able to weave our MLS coverage into what we’re doing with the World Cup. We’ll do our World Cup coverage and once the matches start to conclude we’ll definitely be trying to integrate wherever we are for the MLS game into the production to let fans know that you can continue your soccer fix on the network.We’re in great sites for those games – we’re in Atlanta, we’re in Seattle, we’re in Toronto. We want to show those crazy fan bases and sort of weave that into our World Cup coverage. It’s going to be a natural fit that soccer fans are going to be able to continue their day with MLS and I think that’s an added thing for the league.We’re hoping we’re going to see a big bump in numbers for those games. When you talk about a World Cup, you’re talking about not just soccer fans, you’re talking about casual fans who just want to be a part of the event and the spectacle and we’re going to carry those viewers on to what we’re doing with our MLS coverage as well.
Manchester City Guardiola slams ‘really, really poor’ Man City after Basel loss Goal Last updated 1 year ago 06:32 8/3/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Manchester City Guardiola Manchester City v Basel Basel UEFA Champions League Videos Despite taking an early lead the Premier League outfit fell to the Swiss side at home, and the Spanish manager was not pleased with their play Pep Guardiola took aim at his Manchester City side’s second-half performance against Basel, as the club fell to a 2-1 defeat in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie. While City still cruised into the quarter-finals on the strength of a 4-0 win in the first leg, the Spanish boss was not pleased with how his side performed in a second half that saw them surrender a 36-game unbeaten run at Etihad Stadium .The Premier League leaders were largely dominant in terms of possesion on the night, completing 978 passes – the most recorded in a Champions League match since Opta began keeping the stats during the 2003-2004 season – but even that wasn’t good enough for the former Barcelona boss. Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp “We are happy to be in the quarter finals, we are so happy for that,” he said.”Second half we didn’t attack and forgot to even pass the ball… the second half was really really poor.”Guardiola singled out just one player, 17-year-old Phil Foden, who broke a Champions League age record by starting the match , for praise during the second period, which the manager believes lacked any form of aggression from his team. “Phil was good and in the second he was perhaps the only one who tried to be aggressive,” he said. “It’s good for the rhythm of the future.”With the job done in the last 16, City will now turn their attentions to the Champions League quarter-finals, and Guardiola knows the next round will be much tougher on his team. “The difference in the quarter-finals, in that level all the teams will be so, so tough and demanding,” he continued.”We will try to be ready and to come back because we did it in the recent games.”City hold a commanding lead in the Premier League and will find out who they will face in the Champions League quarter-finals on March 16, with Juventus, Real Madrid and Liverpool the three other teams to have already confirmed their place in the last eight.
Going into last season, the Cowboys were without the star power of Mason Rudolph and James Washington, but did have a star in the backfield in Justice Hill. Hill left with injury early in Bedlam last season and didn’t return for the rest of the year, but Hubbard, who showed glimpses of what he was capable of throughout the year, took over.Hubbard finished that Bedlam game with 104 rushing yards and three touchdowns. He also broke the century mark in two of the final three games of the season, going for 134 yards in a win against West Virginia and 145 yards in a Liberty Bowl win against Missouri. That type of production late in the year has Gundy excited about what he has entering this season.“When we lost Justice last year, it was difficult for us because we lost a great player,” Gundy said. “As I said earlier though, it benefited us because (Hubbard) had to play in some really key games. I’m also excited about watching him play. He’s really just kind of scratched the surface with his body and what he can do and what he can bring to the table. The area he has improved as much as any is just his leadership, his willingness to work extremely hard.”The Canadian track star turned OSU running back is apparently also doing goat things in practice.“One thing I noticed in practice yesterday, and I didn’t say anything about it, I just kind of watched it again today, and it reminded me of guys back when I practice: When he takes the ball in practice from the 40-yard line when we’re in a tag period, when we’re not tackling, he runs all the way to the goal line every time, and I haven’t seen that in years,” Gundy said.“That’s encouraging. Now when we get back to how many steps a day he takes at practice, that could be a little bit of an issue, but I would rather back him off than have to kick him into the fight. We’re really excited about him at this point.”Does that sound familiar? It should.“Every time (Barry Sanders) ran the ball in practice, he sprinted to the end zone,” Gundy said. “We’d have to wait for him to come back. And we’d say, ‘Barry, hey man, you’re killing us.’ He wore himself out, and that’s why he slept all the time, probably.“But the guy was a phenomenal competitor with a work ethic that was through the roof. He out-practiced everybody on the field and in the weight room. And that’s why he got to the point he did.” [ESPN] STILLWATER — It isn’t too often a coach calls his star running back “pretty” as a compliment.On Oklahoma State’s 2017 roster, Hubbard was listed as a 6-1, 190-pound freshman. Entering only his redshirt sophomore season in Stillwater, Hubbard is now listed at 207, and it wasn’t at all comparable to the “freshman 15” other college kids add.#BodybyGlass pic.twitter.com/Nr8GtDakKi— Pistols Firing (@pistolsguys) August 4, 2019“Chuba looks really good,” Gundy said. “For me, or personally as a coach, you’re always really careful to step out there, but he’s about as pretty as they get. He’s about 208-210 pounds, and I don’t know how fast he is, but he’s really fast. He’s very determined. He’s very intelligent. He understands.””He’s as pretty as they get.” You can tell Mike Gundy is expecting big things from @Hubbard_RMN this season. @CowboyFB pic.twitter.com/RZiUIayOSz— Carson Cunningham (@KOCOCarson) August 5, 2019 While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
Our esteemed colleague Nancy at Getting Attention has a terrific nonprofit marketing carnival today with everything you ever wanted to know about social networking. (A carnival just means a bunch of bloggers writing on a theme.) She says:This traveling Carnival of Nonprofit Consultants brings you the best blog postings on nonprofit issues. For this week’s event, I asked bloggers to advise on how already over-taxed nonprofit communicators can handle the ever-expanding menu of communications channels, especially social networking tools, and what social media have the greatest potential for nonprofits. My post of last week is featured, along with work by bloggers smarter than I am on the topic! Highly recommended reading.
World Cup Brazil face tough World Cup opener against Switzerland, says Chapuisat Naim Beneddra Last updated 1 year ago 17:21 6/17/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty World Cup Brazil Brazil v Switzerland Switzerland The Selecao are favourites to win the game against Vladimir Petkovic’s team, but the former national team star believes it will be surprisingly tight Brazil may be one of the favourites to win the 2018 World Cup, but Neymar and Co. are in for a surprisingly difficult start to the competition when they take on Switzerland, Stephane Chapuisat says.The Selecao approach the campaign in Russia aiming for a sixth world title and to eradicate the memories of their semi-final exit of 2014, when they lost 7-1 to Germany.Brazil kick off their campaign against Switzerland and are expected to top Group E ahead of Sunday’s opponents, Costa Rica and Serbia. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘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 However, ex-Switzerland and Borussia Dortmund star Chapuisat believes Vladimir Petkovic’s team will put up a good fight against Tite’s charges.”Brazil is one of the favourites of the tournament, but Switzerland are always difficult to handle, we are well organized and we can bother big teams,” he told Goal. “But Brazil are still thinking about a World Cup at home that ended badly. They may have a big reaction.”But it will be an interesting match and it will be a bonus for us if we achieve a positive result. The most important game for us will be the second against Serbia.”Switzerland narrowly lost out on first place in their qualifying group after winning all but one of their 10 games, and the progress they have made in recent years has given Chapuisat reason to be optimistic.”Petkovic has integrated a lot of young players,” he continued. “He found the right mix, with young players and some old ones. We had a very good qualifying phase with him. It was special because there were two teams that won nine games out of 10; us and Portugal. We finished second and we had to go through the playoffs. Now, it’s going to be an interesting World Cup in a group where there is a big favourite like Brazil. But it will be tight between the other teams.“We have a good team if everyone is there. We have quality players. Our problem is that we have a lot of players who play abroad but who aren’t necessarily in the starting XI at their clubs. For the national team, it is always problematic when important players lack playing time. But that’s the lot of the countries like us where the standard of the national championship is not very high and where the good players go elsewhere. There is a risk that they will not play or that they will be in the wrong position.”Switzerland’s best ever finish at a World Cup was in 1954, when they hosted it and reached the quarter-finals. The Nati settled for a last-16 finish in Brazil four years ago, but Chapuisat hopes they can go one further.Chapuisat added: “It would be beautiful to reach the quarter-finals, but we have to be solid in these knockout matches. We know that everything is possible, but as I said, we must have a great match as our team hasn’t yet reached the knockout stage.”
D. Alli Doomed Dele? Alli facing moment of truth in Russia Tom Maston in Volgograd Last updated 1 year ago 14:43 6/18/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) World Cup Tunisia v England Tunisia England Opinion Videos The Tottenham midfielder is no longer a guaranteed starter for his country and heads into the World Cup with something of a point to prove Theo Walcott. Luke Shaw. Ross Barkley. England are no strangers when it comes to selecting talented youngsters for major tournaments, only for it to become evident in the immediate aftermath that they will likely never reach their full potential.In France two years ago, the eyes of the world would be thrust on Dele Alli. “England’s fearless street footballer who can take Euro 2016 by storm” read one headline in The Guardian on the eve of the tournament. Aged 20 and with just a season of top-flight football to fall back on, in hindsight it can probably be filed away as another case of the English media thrusting too much pressure onto one so young.Fortunately for the Three Lions, Alli has not gone the way of his predecessors in terms of losing his club place and along with it any realistic chance of lighting up a major tournament. Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘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 He does, however, arrive at his first World Cup in a position that would have been scarcely believable 24 months ago. Though he is set to start against Tunisia in Volgograd on Monday as the Three Lions get their tournament campaign underway, he is by no means assured of his position once Gareth Southgate’s side come up against stronger outfits.Strong performances against Nigeria and off the bench against Costa Rica in England’s warm-up friendlies have convinced Southgate that Alli can be a difference-maker alongside Raheem Sterling and Jesse Lingard, as the trio look to provide for Harry Kane against the lesser lights in Russia.But it did not go unnoticed that during the previous round of friendlies – against Netherlands and Italy – Alli was marginalised; limited to a brief cameo as a substitute in Amsterdam and benched against Italy. Though neither the Oranje or the Azzuri have qualified for Russia, they share far more similarities with the big beasts from Europe and South America when it comes to playing style, and as such it was certainly clear back then that Alli was no longer in Southgate’s plans when it came to deploying a more circumspect formation.Of course, three months is a long time in any profession, never mind football. But while Alli’s raw figures of 14 goals and 17 assists in 50 matches during the 2017-18 campaign suggest he remains the same player as the ex-MK Dons teenager that burst onto the scene so suddenly three years ago, there is little doubt that he has stagnated somewhat in terms of his general performance levels, albeit with some explanation.“I disagree that it has been a disappointing season for Alli,” ex-Spurs and England midfielder Jermaine Jenas explained to Goal during the BBC’s recent media day. “There are certain things people don’t take into account when it comes to Dele.”Number one is how young he is. The guy is younger than Harry Winks and we give Winks the freedom of being young and developing. He is a young player and he is still giving assists, he is still scoring goals. And in my opinion he was playing in a worse Spurs team this season than last year. Tottenham lost probably two of the best full-backs in Europe, with [Danny] Rose being injured and [Kyle] Walker going to Manchester City. [Toby] Alderweireld was injured for a large portion of the season too.“Add that to the fact that they have moved away from home into Wembley. So the club and the team have had to deal with a lot. Which is why what they have achieved, finishing third, is brilliant. And Dele has been within that, he’s had special moments. Yes, he has had a bit of a dip at times, a dip in form, but I would put it down to a kind of pattern within his play. He went through a little stage where he was giving the ball away quite a bit, but he got over it.”All reasonable arguments, but there has been a growing feeling in recent years that perhaps Alli is not learning from these dips in form. Still in big matches he will attempt to nutmeg opponents rather than play the simple ball – trying the outrageous when the ordinary would do.The emergence of his own fashion label, the live video game sessions and the insistence on creating a new handshake, each more elaborate than the last, as means of celebration has even seen some begin to throw him in with Paul Pogba as player who might want to concentrate on his on-the-pitch performances rather than building a brand off it. There is a perceived arrogance in almost everything he chooses to do.”He is the confident type, he has that arrogance about him to take the game and say: ‘Alright, give me the ball, I can get the job done.’ It makes me angry when I see people having a go at him because of this season where they will say: ‘He has fallen well below,’” says Jenas.“Well, you might want to have a look at where his standards were before, because they were way higher than most players in the league. In my opinion, he was getting back to that towards the end of the season and I think it was another strong year for him.”Strong year or not, there is no denying that Alli is about to enter perhaps the most important month of his fledgeling career. Real Madrid are rarely linked with ordinary footballers, and Alli can hardly be criticised for having the ability to stand out from the crowd.But with Southgate knowing his squad is largely limited when compared with those who have been tipped to lift the World Cup this summer, Alli might be better served going back to basics. Otherwise, that ever-growing England scrapheap will begin to edge into view.
Mohamed Salah VIDEO: Mohamed Salah penalty gives Egypt hope against Russia Goal Last updated 1 year ago 04:00 6/20/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty Mohamed Salah Russia v Egypt World Cup Russia Egypt African All Stars Videos The star forward converted a penalty against Russia to temporarily keep Egypt’s faint hopes of progressing to the last 16 alive Egypt’s World Cup went from bad to worse as they fell behind Russia 3-0 in the second half of their Group A fixture, though Mohamed Salah was able to pull one back for the Pharaohs in the second half to make it 3-1.The Liverpool forward missed the opening game against Uruguay – which resulted in a loss – but started Tuesday’s game against the host nation.Salah endured a frustrating game as he was unable to get on the ball much in the first half, but managed to score from the penalty spot in the second half after being pulled down inside the Russian penalty area. Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘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 After Salah went down in the box, the referee initially whistled for a free-kick outside the area. However, the referee consulted with VAR and after review, awarded the penalty.Salah delivered an excellent spot kick to cut the deficit back to two goals, and score the first Egyptian World Cup goal since their last appearance at the showpiece in 1990. Russia were flying after scoring two goals after the break through Denis Cheryshev and Artem Dzyuba after Egyptian Ahmed Fathi conceded an unfortunate own goal early on in the first half.But while Salah’s goal gave Egypt a little hope of reversing the deficit, the game ultimately ended with a 3-1 Russia victory. Mo Salah pulls one back for Egypt!Is there enough time for a comeback?? pic.twitter.com/HOIPd5Zzxh— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) June 19, 2018Salah has to assist himself to scorePeak— 〽️ (@Riddock__) June 19, 2018With the defeat, Egypt must hope Saudi Arabia register a win against Uruguay on Wednesday if they are to have any chance of making it into the last 16.
After a year of intense chemotherapy I would like to share that I am in complete REMISSION. I still have hurdles to pass to be cured,but hopefully I can move on with some normality! I would like to thank everyone for there support over the past year. Thank you #Grateful— Carl Ikeme (@Carl_Ikeme) June 23, 2018Wolves will be in the Premier League for 2018-19 after winning the Championship title last season. Nigeria Nigeria goalkeeper Ikeme in remission after year-long cancer battle Jamie Smith Last updated 1 year ago 22:00 6/23/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Getty Images Nigeria World Cup Nigeria v Argentina Wolverhampton Wanderers Wolverhampton Wanderers v Everton Premier League African All Stars The Wolverhampton Wanderers and Nigeria goalkeeper has issued a positive update on his health Nigeria international Carl Ikeme has confirmed he is in remission after spending 12 months battling acute leukaemia.Wolves goalkeeper Ikeme, who missed the chance to be selected for the World Cup due to his treatment, was diagnosed after reporting for pre-season last year.But 32-year-old Ikeme has now given the football world a lift with a positive update via social media. Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘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 “After a year of intense chemotherapy I would like to share that I am in complete REMISSION,” Ikeme wrote on Twitter.”I still have hurdles to pass to be cured, but hopefully I can move on with some normality!”I would like to thank everyone for there (sic) support over the past year. Thank you #Grateful.”Responding to Ikeme’s news, his club Wolves said: “There have been some fantastic moments this year but this by far tops them all.”We’re all delighted for you, Carl Ikeme. See you soon.”
World Cup Neuer & Boateng out, Sane in: How Germany must rebuild after World Cup disaster Ronan Murphy Last updated 1 year ago 19:00 6/28/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(7) Getty/Goal World Cup Germany South Korea v Germany South Korea Leroy Sané Opinion Die Mannschaft suffered a shock exit after winning just one of their group games and now face a huge rebuild ahead of Euro 2020 There is a little crest above the player number on the front of Germany’s World Cup jerseys. It denotes the current World Cup champions and is a special badge worn only by the holders.But until a new champion is crowned on July 15, this special crest will be nowhere to be seen in Russia. Germany’s humiliating exit from the tournament ensures a new team will earn the right to wear it on their chest, while Die Mannschaft must adjust to life with a new-look jersey.The nature of their elimination also means there will be plenty more adjustments for Germany in the next four years as they look firstly at Euro 2020 and then to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, trying to rebuild from the ruins of their worst World Cup in 80 years. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘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 But where exactly do they go from here? What needs to be changed once they recover from the shock?Germany players who should be droppedDespite the 2018 squad retaining some of the players who lifted the World Cup four years earlier, the 23-man panel Joachim Low brought to this summer’s tournament is not actually heavily-skewed towards players in their 30s. Manuel Neuer (32), Mario Gomez (32) and Sami Khedira (31) are the three oldest squad members, with the latter two unlikely to be around for the next World Cup.Neuer admitted in the mixed zone after the 2-0 defeat to South Korea that he had no plans to retire from international football and is likely to continue to play for many more years. He remains one of the best goalkeepers in the world, but with Die Mannschaft now needing to look to their medium and long-term future, should be no longer considered the guaranteed starter for his country.Barcelona’s Marc-Andre ter Stegen has proved his abilities at club level and just turned 26 in April, making him a relatively young shot stopper with the potential to get even better in the next few years. Low selected Kevin Trapp as third-choice goalkeeper, but he is a substitute at PSG and could well be overtaken in the pecking order if Bernd Leno can get off to a good start at Arsenal.Jerome Boateng’s World Cup ended in disgrace as he was sent off against Sweden, forcing Low to play three different centre-back partnerships across the three group games. He is not the player he once was, with Bayern Munich ready to let him leave the club due to the fact they see 22-year-old Niklas Sule as a better option for the future. Germany should also jettison the 29-year-old, who has lost some of his pace and was left exposed to counter-attacking opponents in Russia.Mats Hummels is just a few months younger and could be reaching the end of his international career, while Mesut Ozil is another player due to turn 30 in 2018. The Arsenal midfielder was the centre of controversy before the tournament and did little on the pitch to distract from this, being heavily criticised by German media. He is becoming a luxury player that cannot be accommodated in the Germany XI if they want to build a new, cohesive side.With 31 goals in 78 games for his country, Gomez has been a great servant for Germany, but should not have gone to the World Cup ahead of younger, more in-form strikers despite his dressing room influence. He will likely retire from international football, allowing younger forwards to take his place.Germany players who should be called upLow only brought two proper strikers to the World Cup – 32-year-old Gomez and 22-year-old Werner. The latter’s pace was wasted as he was forced out wide by deep defending opponents, with his 31 first-half touches against South Korea all coming on the flanks. Neither striker scored in Russia, which should not be surprising considering they only had 22 goals between them in the entire 2017-18 Bundesliga season.The league’s runner-up in the top scorer race behind Poland striker Robert Lewandowski was Nils Petersen. He was handed his international debut in the pre-tournament friendly against Brazil before being cut from the final squad. However, he also turns 30 this year, so is not a long-term option.Instead, Germany could look to the three players who finished just a goal behind him in the Bundesliga, with 14 goals apiece. All of Niklas Fullkrug, Mark Uth and Kevin Volland are in their mid 20s, coming off their most productive seasons ever and can provide different options in attack to either replace or partner Werner.The biggest omission from Germany’s final 23-man squad was Manchester City winger Leroy Sane. With Germany needing width in the third game, Low decided to start central midfielder Leon Goretzka out wide. This failed spectacularly as the new Bayern Munich signing is not a natural fit for the position, whereas Sane scored 10 times and assisted 15 more to help Pep Guardiola’s side win the Premier League.Julian Brandt was taken to Russia in his place, showing glimpses of talent in brief cameos from the bench, but was ultimately wasted by Low. Sane would not have solved all of Germany’s problems at the World Cup but surely would have brought something different to a lacklustre attack.In 2017, Germany lifted both the Confederations Cup and the Under-21 European Championships with young, energetic sides. Many of these players should be under consideration for the senior squad. Emre Can, Kerem Demirbay and Max Meyer should be considered for inclusion in midfield, Jonathan Tah, Thilo Kehrer and Mitchell Weiser in defence and Serge Gnabry, Davie Selke and Max Philipp in attack.There were many calls for Philipp Max’s inclusion before the tournament, following an excellent season at left-back for Augsburg, but he has yet to make his international debut. Germany have plenty of young players coming through, but they need to be given time to adapt to international football – the Nations League kicks off in September and is the perfect time to bring through a new generation of players.Should Low stay as Germany manager?Before Germany’s final group game, DFB President Reinhard Grindel insisted that no matter what happened, the German football federation would honour its new deal with Low. “We decided before the World Cup for the contract extension, because we believe that the change that will take place after the World Cup, regardless of the outcome of the tournament, cannot be done better by anyone other than Jogi Low,” he told WAZ.However, when he said that, he was probably not expecting elimination before the knockout stage. His stance has eased somewhat, claiming that the DFB will hold discussions with the head coach in the next few days to decide what to do next.Low has not become a terrible manager overnight. He had reached at least the semi-finals of every previous tournament he had guided Germany to, but perhaps had gotten too comfortable in the role by the time the 2018 World Cup came around. The 58-year-old has the ability to get Germany back to its best, but may not be allowed continue after the embarrassing nature of their exit.The big problem for Germany is who would replace Low if they do get rid of him. They are unlikely to hire a non-German to be their next manager and all the best German coaches are under contract and unlikely to leave their clubs.Jurgen Klopp is the best choice for the job, but will definitely not quit Liverpool when he is trying to build a legacy there. Julian Nagelsmann has already agreed to join RB Leipzig in 2018-19 and is too young, which is probably also the case for Schalke’s Domenico Tedesco. Ex-players do not have enough experience, while Low’s coaching staff are not big enough names to earn a promotion. The 2014-winning assistant Hansi Flick was a methodical mind whose absence was obvious this summer, but has moved into a backroom job with the DFB and has not held a management job in over a decade.The time is right for Low to go, but there is probably nobody suitable or available to take over.How Germany should look at Euro 2020The problem in two years’ time could once again be an abundance of attacking talent but the need to shoe-horn in Werner making things difficult. Will Germany decide to stick with a 4-2-3-1 and a lone frontman? Could they attempt to replicate Leipzig’s 4-2-2-2 approach so Werner has a partner? Or will they move away from four-at-the-back like they did in the Confederations Cup?Many of the current crop could be gone by 2020, but Toni Kroos should definitely be retained despite making mistakes in Russia. He scored their fantastic winner against Sweden and kept things ticking over in midfield while his team-mates stuttered.Brandt needs more time than just substitute roles, while Goretzka will battle for a midfield spot against the likes of Gundogan, Can and Sebastian Rudy. Sane is a definite starter if he continues his club form, with Gnabry a brilliant option from the benchA 3-4-2-1 would also provide more defensive cover, meaning Joshua Kimmich could rove further forward and not have to track back as often, while questions over Max’s defensive failings would not be as big of an issue with him providing crosses and set-piece deliveries to create goals.
World Cup Heartbreak for Senegal and all of Africa as fair play makes for the cruelest of World Cup exits Nizaar Kinsella Click here to see more stories from this author Chelsea correspondent Last updated 1 year ago 00:25 6/29/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(6) Getty Images World Cup Senegal v Colombia Senegal Colombia Sadio Mané African All Stars Powerade The Lions of Teranga suffered a devastating 1-0 loss to Colombia in Samara that allowed Japan to progress at their expense on yellow cards Senegal could and possibly should have squeezed past Colombia to book at tie with England or Belgium in the last 16, but they fell to a Yerry Mina header form a corner to end Africa’s involvement in the World Cup.After Nigeria pushed Argentina all the way in their final group game, Senegal became the latest African outfit to suffer heartbreak at the hands of South American opposition and their exit was arguably even harder to take. Aliou Cisse’s side didn’t just concede a late goal, they bowed out on yellow cards. Colombia’s 1-0 win saw them top the group but Japan and Senegal had the same number of points, goals scored and goals conceded (all four), while they had drawn 2-2 in their matchday two meeting. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘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 However, Senegal became the first team in World Cup history to be eliminated on fair play, as they accrued more yellows (6-4) than their rivals for a last-16 berth. Even more gallingly, it would have all been so different had they taken their chances in Samara.Senegal dominated the first half, completely nullifying the threat posed by Colombia’s much-vaunted attack. Indeed, they didn’t even allow Radamel Falcao & Co. a single touch in their penalty area during the opening 45 minutes, while at the same time creating the better chances.Sadio Mane ran rings around Mina only for the much-maligned Barcelona centre-back to have the last laugh. Senegal were, ultimately, victims of the narrow margins that decide games at the very highest level.They needed composure in the final third but they didn’t offer any, while they were let down at the other end of the field by the team’s only Africa-based player. Goalkeeper Khadim N’Diaye could have done better as Mina leaped highest to score his fifth goal in 14 games for his national team.There will be regrets all round, though; N’Diaye shouldn’t be made the scapegoat for Senegal’s exit. They must also must also back and wonder how they failed to beat Japan, despite having created more than twice as many chances as their Asian opponents.Colombia also deserve huge credit for the way in which they responded to the loss of their talisman, James Rodriguez, who hobbled off in the 31st minute. In the second half, they gradually gained control of what felt like a home game for the South Americans, given the presence of some 30,000 Colombians in Samara.Falcao is an inspirational character for Colombia but Rodriguez will be sorely missed as Jose Pekerman’s side prepare to do battle with either England or Belgium in the next round. Still, the attacking midfielder’s injury was the one disappointment on an otherwise joyous day for the players and their supporters.There will be nothing but heartbreak in Africa, though. As the legendary Didier Drogba had told the BBC beforehand, all of the continent’s football fans had rallied behind Cisse’s side: “I want them to go through. They are the only African team left. We have put our hopes in them, and I think they can do it.”Unfortunately, they could not, and now, for the first time since 1982, Africa will not have a representative in the knockout stage of a World Cup.Senegal may have proved to be one of Africa’s finest sides in this World Cup, but they did not prove themselves one of the tournament’s best. At this cruel, unforgiving level, you have to be effective at both ends of the field and they came up agonisingly short in both regards.The long wait for a World Cup winner from Africa goes on…
World Cup Mexico boss Osorio not ready to decide future after Brazil defeat Goal Last updated 1 year ago 00:42 7/3/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty Images World Cup Mexico Brazil v Mexico Brazil The 56-year-old has been in charge for nearly three years, and has been widely expected to depart following the World Cup Juan Carlos Osorio has said he will take some time to decide his future as Mexico manager following a 2-0 defeat to Brazil in the World Cup last 16. Osorio got Mexico off to a flying start at the tournament in Russia, with the team winning their first two matches against Germany and South Korea.However, El Tri’s time in Russia turned sour afterwards. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘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 Mexico lost their final group match 3-0 to Sweden, consigning them to second place in Group F and their ultimately unsuccessful last-16 matchup with the Brazilians in Samara. Osorio has been subject of criticism from segments of the Mexican press and fan base throughout his time in charge of El Tri, with many expecting his departure following the World Cup.Following the match on Monday though, Osorio said he isn’t ready to take any decision just yet. “The most important right now is to do things calmly,” the Colombian manager said on Telemundo following the game. “Do a meticulous analysis, an analysis of the details of our process here, and surely they will make a decision, and we will as well.”He later told a news conference: “This (his future) is the most irrelevant thing right now. We just lost a very important match. It’s very painful so we will wait and see what happens over the next few days, you’ll see what i decide soon.”Osorio was appointed Mexico manager in October 2015, and has overseen a period of highs and lows with El Tri. Mexico easily qualified for the 2018 World Cup and put together strong performances at the 2016 Copa America and 2017 Confederations Cup, but those tournaments ended with embarrassing blowout defeats, 7-0 to Chile and 4-1 to Germany, respectively.Tasked with getting El Tri to the quarterfinal of a World Cup for the first time since 1986, Osorio’s Mexico side instead failed at the last-16 stage for the seventh consecutive World Cup. Osorio has been linked with the vacant U.S. national team position, as well as a move to Europe.
COLUMBUS, OH – JANUARY 4: Ohio State Mascot Brutus the Buckeye goofs around with a basketball prior to the start of the game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers on January 4, 20114 at Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State won by a final score of 84-53. (Photo by Ryan Young/Getty Images)On Thursday, we learned that members of the Ohio State football team were working on a dance routine for halftime of today’s OSU basketball game against Wisconsin. The performance has come and gone, so let’s see how things turned out: Our thoughts:Does Ezekiel Elliott wear his crop-top exclusively now? Seems like a poor decision with the winter that we’re having, but whatever works for him.We really appreciate that the players totally went for it. It looks like anyone who was hesitant about dancing in front of tens of thousands of fans stayed home.Aaron Parry: not the best rhythm, but the effort is there.Overall, solid job by the Buckeyes. They’re probably more likely to win another national championship on the gridiron than the dance floor, but they definitely brought it this afternoon.