Danny Kelly stood in as host and was alongside Arsenal legend Ray Parlour for today’s Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast show.They were joined by former Chelsea goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini, who gave his view on Jose Mourinho and the Blues’ shocking start to the season.Meanwhile, ex-Manchester United coach Rene Meulensteen explained why Wayne Rooey is struggling under Louis van Gaal’s new regime at Old Trafford.Listen to the best bits above!
1 Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino Jurgen Klopp hailed the quality of Roberto Firmino, who played his best game in a Reds shirt to give the German his first victory as Liverpool manager.Defender Nathaniel Clyne may have made the decisive intervention in the 1-0 win over Bournemouth – his first goal since a summer move from Southampton – but Firmino’s influence was everywhere.The Brazilian playmaker had a hand in the goal and was Liverpool’s most threatening man on the pitch as they booked a quarter-final tie at against the Saints at St Mary’s.Klopp knows plenty about the £29million arrival from Hoffenheim, having watched him many times during his time as Borussia Dortmund boss, and is pleased to see the 24-year-old starting to come into his own in England.“It is important for a new player when he comes to a club to show this but he does not have to show me because I know him very well,” said Klopp.“We know a little bit more about him, it was very intensive for him tonight.“He is ready. He is prepared for this league, he is physically strong, a good technician and usually he is a good finisher. A good player.”Klopp admitted Liverpool’s performance for his first victory in charge was not very different from his previous three draws, but was nevertheless more than happy to finally get off the mark.Anfield celebrated the win with gusto, even if Klopp said there was little difference from what he had seen before.“I feel much better than after a draw – but I don’t think the other games were so much worse than today, the result is the biggest difference,” the German added.“We did well tonight as we did not have too much time for training between the games – we had only one hour training with this new team and system.“Minute-by-minute we got better and for the whole 90 minutes we played football.“I am satisfied, the boys did really well.”
Bayern Munich star Thomas Muller Red Ass: Bayern Munich X Thomas Müller. That last shot though… https://t.co/oXojJMsJcX— FourFourTweet (@FourFourTweet) December 15, 2015 1 Thomas Muller was the loser of a game of Red Arse in Bayern Munich training that will certainly have left its mark!The German may boast an impressive CV including a Champions League title and even the World Cup. However, his Bayern team mates clearly make sure his ego doesn’t get too bloated as this clip shows.The sharp shooting Bavarian’s have bagged an impressive 45 goals from just 16 games in the Bundesliga this season, and it’s clear to see how they have honed their precision, with Muller being on the receiving end of two painful shots.Unless the 26-year-old can learn to stay out of the net in future training sessions, the summer move to Manchester United could be re-ignited when the January transfer window re-opens.Watch the brilliant clip in the video below!
Slaven Bilic Slaven Bilic believes West Ham have to start thinking like a big club if they are to become one.The Hammers host Liverpool on Saturday lying just one point behind the Merseysiders, in seventh, and sixth-placed Manchester United.Yet while those two traditionally successful clubs are still considered to be in the title race, lying nine points from top spot, no one expects West Ham to be in the shake-up come May.The weight of history may be in Liverpool’s favour but, as the Hammers enter the year in which they will move into the Olympic Stadium, Bilic knows that mentality has to change.“Manchester United or Liverpool, who are one point ahead of us, they are thinking that way (about the title),” said the Upton Park boss.“It’s all psychological because it is Liverpool. I mean they have been used to being in a title race.“Some people would give more chance to Manchester United or Liverpool than to Leicester – without any logical reasons about what is happening on the pitch because Leicester is much better than those two clubs at the moment.“And I bet you that many clubs who have more points than Chelsea are more afraid that, with a bad run, they could get in more trouble than Chelsea. They are thinking about the top six at least.“So it is psychological because we are used to Liverpool to be there. That is normal. That is the mentality. That is the structure of the club and that takes time to change.“To become a big club, you need years of that, what Liverpool have; tradition, history, everything. And that reflects on your daily work, no matter who the coach is. It’s about the jersey, it’s the club.“Let’s all say the smaller clubs, the clubs like us, or Crystal Palace, we are all trying to move forward. Of course we want to do it as quickly as possible.“But this is a good example of how it doesn’t go like that. Now, we will never say we have a chance to win the league. Whereas for Liverpool it would be normal for them to say, ‘yeah, we are nine points off’. It’s in the head. And it takes time to change that.”Bilic is able to welcome back French playmaker Dimitri Payet after two months out with an ankle injury, and will hand a late fitness test to full-back Aaron Cresswell. 1
Yaya Toure’s Manchester City career will be over at the end of the season, talkSPORT have been told.Pep Guardiola is to replace Manuel Pellegrini as City boss in the summer and, according to Graham Hunter, there is zero chance of the Spaniard keeping Toure on.Guardiola sold the midfielder during his time in charge of Barcelona and has been heavily criticised by the Ivorian’s trusted agent Dimitri Seluk since his client’s acrimonious departure from the Nou Camp.“I personally think Yaya Toure has got no chance of being there,” said European football expert Hunter, speaking on the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast.“He was chased out of Barcelona because Pep said to him: ‘work a little harder, shed a kilo, a kilo-and-a-half and tell your agent who is in charge, the player or the agent’. Yaya Toure wouldn’t do that and Yaya Toure’s agent has continued to be a loudmouth.“Yaya is a sublime footballer who played extraordinarily in that treble for Pep Guardiola [at Barcelona] but my own perception is that Yaya Toure will be moving on and he knows it.”
1 John Stones in action for Everton Barcelona have been priced out of a move for Everton defender John Stones, according to reports in Spain.The England international was heavily linked with a move away from Goodison Park last summer as Chelsea made four offers.However all of those, including a final bid of £37m, were rejected by Everton as the club refused to enter any negotiations.Barcelona have since scouted Stones this season and have been impressed by what they have seen from the centre-back.But, according to Mundo Deportivo, the Spanish champions have been priced out of a move for the 21-year-old.Chelsea are said to be ready to splash over £50m on Stones this summer and Barcelona are unwilling to match that amount.Instead, the La Liga side are ready to turn their attention to Athletic Bilbao defender Aymeric Laporte – who has a release-clause of £35m.
Ed Mierzwinski is trying to get the word out to college students that the free T-shirt or teddy bear or a subthey accept in exchange for signing up for a credit card could end up costing them a lot of financial heartache. For years now, lenders have set up tables on college campuses offering free stuff to entice students into signing up for credit. The companies know that if they get these young people early, they likely will capture a customer for a long time. Many schools have signed lucrative affinity deals with credit card companies in which they provide contact lists of students or allow sidewalk-marketing by the credit pushers. It’s an insidious relationship that is justified because the schools get needed funds or officials insist that the cards help students build a credit history. What many students end up building is a lot of debt. Consumer and higher education groups have become increasingly concerned that college students, many of whom do not have a job or steady income, are getting credit cards without fully understanding the credit terms. In a 2004 study of credit card usage by undergraduates, 56 percent of freshmen reported that they had obtained their first card at the age of 18. The student loan lender Nellie Mae, which did the study, said that as students progress through school, their credit card usage swells. When they reach the senior year, 56percent of students carry four or more cards, with an average balance of $2,864. Of course, some have much more than that. The counter-marketing campaign includes a Web site (www.truthaboutcredit.org), planned publication of research reports on credit card marketing practices and an appeal to colleges to adopt the following: A ban on offering any gifts when marketing credit cards. The prohibition would include anything of value, including food, clothing, sports equipment, travel vouchers or coupons. A prohibition of any campus employee, student group or campus department from accepting financial support or other goods and services from credit card banks, issuers and vendors in exchange for allowing them to market cards to students. A ban on the selling of any student lists to credit card companies. The campaign isn’t an effort to ban access to credit cards by students, but rather create more informed consumers, said Gwen Dungy, executive director of NASPA. “We are trying to use colleges as change agents,” Mierzwinski said. “And maybe some will think twice and not get cards.” I don’t think any college student needs a credit card. If they don’t have the money to pay for school supplies, textbooks or food (the top reasons they use credit), what are they going to do when the bill comes due? Oh yes, they’ll do what many seasoned cardholders do. They will roll over their balances to the next month and dig themselves deeper into debt. Not surprisingly in the Nellie Mae report, only 21 percent of undergraduates with credit cards reported that they paid off all cards each month, and 11 percent said they made less than the minimum required payment each month. I have two nieces in college, one a senior at Spelman College in Atlanta and the other a sophomore at Bowie State University in Maryland. Neither of them has gotten a credit card. They’ve both been able to manage just fine without leaning on plastic in lean times. What a valuable lesson. The senior at Spelman even spent a recent semester in South Africa. Some might have advised her – in case of an emergency – to get a credit card. No need. When she needed money, it was simply deposited into her bank account and she used her debit card. I hope this campaign influences many students. At the very least every college ought to sign on to ban the giveaways by the credit card companies. School administrators shouldn’t let their students be taken down the path of plastic bondage lured by a T-shirt giveaway. Listen to Michelle Singletary discuss personal finance every Tuesday on NPR’s “Day to Day.” She can be reached at The Washington Post, 1150 15th St., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20071, or at email@example.com. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.“They rely on the fact that students are vulnerable,” said Mierzwinski, the consumer program director for U.S. Public Interest Research Group. But now many college students will be seeing new tables on their campuses, marketing a different message. With a grant from the Ford Foundation, U.S. PIRG is heading a coalition that is staging a national counter-credit card marketing campaign. They are starting on 40 college campuses nationwide. Instead of a credit card application, students will be handed literature warning them about the fees and terms of certain credit cards. They’ll still get free items, including lollipops that say, “Don’t be a sucker.” Of course every campaign must have a slogan. In this case it’s a play on Visa, “FEESA. Free Gifts Now. Huge Fees Later.” U.S. PIRG has been joined in this campaign by the American Council on Education, the National Association of College and University Business Officers and NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education.
BAGHDAD, Iraq – President Jalal Talabani of Iraq has criticized Syria for supporting Turkey’s threat to carry out military attacks against Kurdish rebels in northern Iraq. Talabani said in an interview that President Bashar Assad of Syria had crossed a “red line” by speaking approvingly of Turkey’s threat of a cross-border offensive against the rebels. “Usually I refrain from commenting on Syrian positions to maintain our historical good relations,” Talabani, himself a Kurd, said in the interview, published Saturday in the Saudi-owned newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat. “But this time I cannot support this crossing of a red line.” The tensions have already unnerved world oil markets. The price of crude oil hit a record high Thursday, before sliding 87 cents to close at $88.60 a barrel in New York on Friday. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.“I think these statements are dangerous and contradict the soul of Arabic solidarity,” Talabani said in the interview. Talabani’s comments were in reference to Assad’s endorsement of the Turkish Parliament’s decision on Wednesday to authorize cross-border incursions against Kurdish rebels. Turkey, however, has said that no strikes are imminent. The rebels, known as the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, use bases along the mountainous border to stage attacks inside Turkey in a separatist struggle that has continued for decades. Syria also has a large Kurdish minority and, like Turkey, fears that the substantial autonomy that Kurds inside Iraq have won will impel Kurds in Syria to seek similar concessions, or even independence. Turkey says about 3,000 rebels seeking an independent Kurdish state in southeastern Turkey now operate out of bases in Iraq. Meanwhile, a spokesman for the PKK threatened in a telephone interview on Saturday that the group would retaliate against the Turkish oil infrastructure if Turkey attacked its bases. The spokesman, Abdul Rahaman Jaderi, said the group would strike a pipeline that transports Iraqi oil to the Turkish Mediterranean port of Ceyhan. “Turkey makes money from Iraqi oil pipelines and buys weapons to attack us,” he said. Violence continued inside Iraq when a roadside bomb detonated Saturday morning beside a crowded minibus, killing three people and wounding nine on a highway south of Baghdad. An American soldier was killed and another wounded in an ambush in Baghdad, the U.S. military said. Also Saturday, the military said soldiers near the city of Tarmiya, north of Baghdad, had discovered a large cache of homemade explosives stored in piles of 100-pound bags and totaling more than 18 tons in one of the largest such finds of the war. Ordnance specialists detonated it where it lay. “The crater from the blast measured 100 feet wide, 100 feet long and 30 feet deep,” the military news release said.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
SAN DIEGO – They know what the winds can do. They forecast them. Fight the fires the winds fan. Prepare for evacuations that, in years past, never came. They thought they knew, until seven days of fury began a week ago. From almost the beginning, this Santa Ana was different somehow. Meteorologist Philip Gonsalves recognized it when he saw the smoke through the picture windows of the National Weather Service station in Rancho Bernardo closing in on the office itself. He had helped forecast the tempest: an ominous combination of strong gusts, low humidity and soaring temperatures. In weather speak: red flag fire conditions. Fire Battalion Chief Tom Zeulner understood it, too, when en route to his first blaze of the week, his wife called to tell him five more fires had begun. Dan Crane thought it was “situation normal,” his words for the Santa Ana fire season that torments Californians every October through February, when blustery winds blow out of the desert. He’s lived through a half-century of them, and never once had to evacuate – not even during the two-week onslaught of 2003, when fires burned 750,000 acres and killed 22 people. This time, he awoke to neighbors honking and smoke wafting through his windows. By Saturday, more than a half-million acres would be gone, 1,700 homes destroyed, with the damage surpassing $1 billion. Stunned homeowners who just last weekend were setting out Halloween decorations and watching football would find themselves sifting through kindling and ash, mumbling things like: This used to be my kitchen. This used to be my bedroom. This used to be … Even a week after it all started, several thousand would remain evacuated as blazes burned on relentlessly. There would be questions about prevention in the midst of persistent drought, lack of preparation in a fire-plagued state and whether resources were put to use as fast as possible. But first, before all of that, came the winds. They were different, undoubtedly, although no one could have predicted just how deadly and destructive. No surprise for some Gonsalves is a man who usually takes things in stride, especially the weather, perhaps because he knows it so well. He knows how easily a fire can kick up when the winds get going, and computer models at work had predicted a nasty Santa Ana for days. And so, on Sunday morning when he stepped out of church and sniffed smoke, he was hardly surprised. “It’s begun,” he thought. “Here we go again.” The surprise came hours later, when Gonsalves arrived home from the gym and turned on the news. Fires – plural – were everywhere: The Ranch Fire, sparked at 9:42 p.m. the night before, racing through 500 acres some 50 miles northwest of Los Angeles. The Canyon Fire, ignited at 4:50 a.m. in Malibu, forcing 1,500 people – even Hollywood’s elite – to evacuate. The Harris Fire, begun at 9:23 a.m. southeast of San Diego, exploding to 500 acres in just over three hours. The Witch Creek Fire, burning at 12:37 p.m. in a mountain town northeast of San Diego, consuming 3,000 acres in two hours. At the Weather Service office in the San Diego suburb of Rancho Bernardo, Gonsalves’ colleagues watched as satellite images showed plume after plume of smoke roaring over a swath of Southern California. Their computers are programmed to display wildfire hot spots as little red squares. Red squares seemed to cover the lower half of the state. By evening, the forecasters had to shut off the air conditioning to stop smoke from seeping into the office. Back at home, on his day off, Gonsalves was thinking about what to pack – just in case his own family had to flee. Sunday was an off-day for Zeulner, as well. He, too, had gone to church, near his home in San Luis Obispo, and was having lunch when he got word: “You guys are going.” A battalion chief with the city Fire Department, Zeulner commands a 20-member strike team that operates five, Type 1 fire engines, ideal for defending homes and structures. The team, when called upon, can be dispatched anywhere. They were summoned to the Ranch Fire, to help protect homes in the tiny citrus-growing village of Piru. “Immediate need,” Zeulner had been told. In other words: Get there fast. By 2 p.m., the caravan of engines was on the road, Zeulner monitoring AM radio for fire updates. The 33-year veteran was alarmed by what he heard. Winds were gusting from 60 to 80 mph; in some places, they exceeded 100 mph. “That’s hurricane force,” thought Zeulner, who knew from experience that anything over 60 mph was unusual during Santa Ana season. Terrifying evacuations Crane awoke early Monday and looked at the clock: 4 a.m. He smelled smoke coming through his bedroom window, but when he got up to shut it, he heard something on the street below. A car honking, he thought. He peered outside. Rancho Bernardo’s Lancashire Way, Crane’s home for 20 years, looked like an erupting volcano. “We gotta go!” he yelled to his wife, Sherry, still in bed. “Now!” Their neighbor’s wooden fence was ablaze, the palm trees in front of that house igniting like matchsticks. Glowing embers shot horizontally across the street. To the north and east, a line of flames lit up the ridge near a subdivision called The Trails. To the south, Battle Mountain, directly behind Crane’s home, went up like a Roman candle. Terrified neighbors roused one another with phone calls and knocks on the door, driving past police officers who cruised a nearby street, shouting through bullhorns, “Evacuate! Now!” Elsewhere across San Diego County, reverse 911 calls alerted residents to fires that had gone out of control overnight. In a day, the Witch Creek Fire grew from 3,000 acres to 30,000, eating through the communities of Rancho Bernardo, Escondido, Rancho Santa Fe, Poway – taking out multimillion-dollar estates and modest ranch homes. The biggest evacuation in California state history was just getting started. Some 560,000 would be forced from their homes in San Diego County alone. Qualcomm Stadium, home to the NFL’s San Diego Chargers, was opened to evacuees in a scene reminiscent of Hurricane Katrina. The Del Mar Fairgrounds and schools housed others. At the Weather Service office, Gonsalves arrived just after 6 a.m. to start his regular shift. He saw the smoke hanging low out the window, the line of cars snaking down West Bernardo Drive. Three hours later, the forecasters received a reverse 911. They, too, packed up and decamped. By nightfall, more than 500 homes had already been demolished in San Diego County. Two fires that began just that day in the mountain vacation haven of Lake Arrowhead would destroy 300 more. Elsewhere across California, more than a dozen fires were now burning, incinerating 374 square miles in seven counties. And Monday afternoon, this warning from the Weather Service: “Strong winds are expected to redevelop tonight.” The wrath of the Santa Anas was far from over. Losses mount Over the next two days, such heartbreaking discoveries happened again and again across the region. At a blaze farther north in Santa Clarita, Don Benson found his house and prized 1957 Thunderbird in ruins. A neighbor drove by, sending a wish for better days: “I hope God is good to you.” “I believe in him,” Benson called back, “but sometimes it wears thin.” Zeulner, whose team late Wednesday was dispatched to San Diego to pitch in, escorted an elderly couple to their lost home in Escondido the next day. “We’re sorry for your loss,” he told them. “We’re here to help.” What else could he say? Even as President Bush arrived on Thursday, offering words of comfort, there was more devastating news: A 58-year-old mortgage broker and his 55-year-old wife, a teacher, were found in the rubble of an Escondido home. Another 52-year-old man died after refusing to leave his house during evacuations. The charred remains of four others, believed to be illegal immigrants, were found in the woods near the border. Authorities were investigating whether the deaths were due to the fires. Word that at least one of the major blazes, in Orange County, was deliberately set spread further outrage. There was, however, one reason for optimism. By Thursday night, the ruthless winds that fueled the calamity had finally died. Back to work Come Friday, Gonsalves and his colleagues were back at their computers at the weather office, swapping war stories in between work about their own fire encounters. The office was unscathed, but for the lingering stench of smoke. Gonsalves was lucky; his family never had to evacuate. One colleague remained displaced from his home in Julian, though even that evacuation order had lifted by Saturday morning. Zeulner was enjoying his first 24 hours off in five days, although, given the circumstances, enjoying hardly seemed the right word. He still had no idea when he might head home, or whether he’d miss a vacation to see his 5-month-old granddaughter. And at 6 a.m. Saturday, he and his crew reported for yet another day of duty in San Diego. He joked that he’d better at least be back by Dec. 28 – the day he retires from the fire department. “I got in the fire service to help people,” he said, his eyes reddening with tears because, despite so much loss, he believes he did help people this past week. “It’s a good feeling.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Buncrana-based Hegarty’s Home Interiors have launched a campaign to ensure local schoolgirl Keri Kelly gets a life-changing operation which may lead her to seeing for the very first time.The campaign to raise €30,000 is being backed by donegaldaily.com!Two people moved by her story are Stephen and Matthew Gleeson of Hegarty’s Home Interiors in Buncrana who decided to encourage other people to get involved by pledging the first of what they hope are 60 €500 donations. “We both have healthy children and are very grateful for that blessing. Keri’s story is one of hope and if there is any hope of giving her sight and as she said ‘to see her mammy’s face’ then surely we have to contribute,” said Stephen.“We would like to see the business community of Donegal, those that can afford to help, to donate anything up to €500 for Keri’s life-changing trip to China. It would just take 60 of us to make this dream a reality especially as Chinese surgeons accepted to take on her case which is not always assured.”Keri has ONH (optic nerve hypoplasia) which means that her optic nerves never grew and she is registered blind.Her parents were told that there was nothing that could be done to help but when they heard about stem cell treatment in China that may give Keri a very real chance of sight, they jumped at it. But before they even think of making the trip they must raise €30,000.Hegarty’s Home Interiors in Buncrana will leave collection boxes for members of the public who want to make a small donation in their store.They will also encourage other business people and suppliers to get involved in what they have described as a “campaign for a life-changing opportunity”.For more information on Keri Kelly’s campaign log onto her Facebook group “Keri’s Search for Sight”BUNCRANA BUSINESS HELPS IN LITTLE KERI’S SEARCH FOR SIGHT was last modified: June 14th, 2011 by gregShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:buncranahegarty’s interiorsKeri Kelly