Unique Valentine novelty items for the home.â€¢A one-of-a-kind heart shaped wreath,â€¢Valentine greeting stones by “Always in Our Heart.”â€¢A big heart shaped box of Russell Stover’s candy,â€¢A Valentine’s purse, a unique lamp, and other items to spice up your home,â€¢And don’t forget about the great number of Valentine’s Cards.Barbara Jon’s a uniquely modern day gift shop, opened its doors in downtown Wellington in November. Since that point, Sumner County residents are discovering it is a mandatory place to shop for its gift-buying needs.The new gift shop, owned by Linn and Barbara Jon Shaffer of Caldwell, is located next door to The Gold Corner on 104 N. Washington. It contains a little bit of everything from clothes to scarves to purses to jewelry to Willow Tree nativity sets.Are you familiar with Village Green, a gift shop in Caldwell? The Shaffers have been running that business for more than 15 years. Â Barbara Jon’s is the same type of store.“We like to think of this place as Village Green on steroids,” jokes Karen Murray, the store manager and big sister of Barbara Jon.How about a big box of Valentines candy?Linn Shaffer, who also opened the Wellington HealthMart Pharmacy 2 1/2 years ago, said he and Barbara Jon wanted to open a gift shop to replace Tan Express and Blossoms by Bridgett’s, who stores that recently closed.“Wellington has a beautiful downtown,” Linn Shaffer said. “I just love it. The buildings are fixed up and attractive. We wanted to be part of that.”SpecialsGet your candle of the month: 20 percent off. During the Christmas shopping holiday: all the ornaments are on sale for 20 percent off.Barbara Jon’s barbecue lighters.A business tidbit: The business is named after Barbara Jon, the owner of the place. But how did she get her name? Her mom was named Barbara. Her dad was named John. If she was going to be a boy her name would have been John Wayne Arnold, according to Linn. Barbara said it would have not been the case. Her dad’s name was John William David Arnold Jr. So had she been born a boy, she said her name would have been John William David Arnold III!â€¦ The Shaffers have been operating the Caldwell Pharmacy for 36 years before opening up the Wellington Healthmart. So Barbara’ Jon’s is the second Wellington-Caldwell combo business.When open: 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursdays. They are open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays.Call them at: 620-326-6333. Barbara Jon’s is located next to The Gold Corner in Wellington.by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow â€” Valentine’s Day is approaching and Barbara Jon’s Fine Gifts and Decor on 104 N. Washington has the holiday covered for your one-shop needs.Barbara Jon’s has a multiple number of gifts perfect for your sweetie.Pick and choose the following gifts:Â A Valentine wreath and greeting stones.
Sisi, the former army chief, was elected in 2014, a year after leading the military to oust his predecessor Mohamed Morsi amid mass protests against the Islamist’s year-long rule.On January 7, former prime minister Ahmed Shafiq, once seen as a main challenger to Sisi, said he would not be a candidate, reversing a previous pledge to stand.Other potential candidates include Khaled Ali, a rights lawyer and 2012 presidential candidate, and military colonel Ahmed Konsowa.However, Konsowa was given six years in prison in December by a military court after the previous month announcing his intention to stand.Share on: WhatsApp Cairo, Egypt | AFP | The head of Egypt’s legendary Zamalek football club, Mortada Mansour, said Saturday he would be standing in the presidential election in March.“I will be a candidate in the presidential election and I will start to collect sponsors,” he wrote on Facebook.He also confirmed his intention to run on a television show, saying he “had to gather about 25,000 signatures in 15 provinces in just 10 days”.The National Elections Authority will accept applications from presidential hopefuls between January 20 and 29.Voting will be on March 26-28, with a second round on April 24-26 if required.Despite not yet having announced his candidacy, incumbent Abdel Fattah al-Sisi is widely expected to stand and win in the first round.Campaigning begins on February 24 and will last until March 23.
7% 2nd 1 DISTANCE COULD AID GYPSY BLU IN UPSET EFFORT 16% 3 15% Stronach 5 All-Star Ticket for October 11th, 2019 XBTV Thursday: What to Watch for at Santa Anita Park on October 10th, 2019 10% 11% (Current Through Sunday, Oct. 6) 70% 15% 24% $136,547 2 33% Richard Baltas28 3rd 55% 53% 27% McKINZIE BREEZES FOR BREEDERS’ CUP CLASSIC Flavien Prat27 4 Philip D’Amato21 34% 6 1st Mario Gutierrez14 14% 2 57% 30% 1 3 3 3 2 $317,792 18% 1 3 Mark Glatt16 31% $194,937 Evin Roman18 36% ITM% 14% 22% $484,533 64% 7 3 OMAHA BEACH ‘LOOKS GREAT,’ ALL OPTIONS OPEN 4 $133,888 ITM% $110,126 4 $132,694 Geovanni Franco20 J.C. Diaz, Jr.19 Drayden Van Dyke26 2 2 5 2 $333,362 0 $135,540 Victor Espinoza29 1 12% 42% 0 6 $39,901 83% Martin Garcia17 Mike Smith17 Doug O’Neill30 1 3 John Velazquez6 46% 43% $618,567 $181,352 $170,775 5 7% 50% $157,289 17% 2 2 Rafael Bejarano28 33% $252,660 2 $209,853 JockeyMts 2 20% FEATURES:A Day in the Life With Exercise Rider Taylor Cambra at Santa Anita ParkA Candid Conversation With Jockey Joseph Talamo: Part 1A Candid Conversation With Jockey Joseph Talamo: Part 2WORK OUTS:McKinzie (Baffert) 10/10/19Bast (Outside) and Hot Sean (Baffert) 10/09/19S Y Sky (Outside) and Violette Szabo (D’Amato) 10/06/19Gypsy Blu (Glatt) 10/05/19Bellafina (Callaghan) 10/04/19 Edwin Maldonado13 3 3 2 15% 11% 2 2 John Sadler27 2 2 0 4 46% $85,604 2 7 $86,489 3 5 $485,234 5 4 3rd 11% 8 XPRESSBET ‘FIRST CALL’ LOOKS AT WEEKEND RACES 29% Joseph Talamo21 Ruben Fuentes27 Bob Baffert14 3 45% 54% 1 3 14% 4 $597,040 33% 1 TrainerSts LATEST CONTENT FROM XBTV: 3 17% 2nd 4 4 5 14% $376,067 7 0 1 27% 3 48% 30% 2 2 2 1 Abel Cedillo41 44% $576,702 32% OAK TREE STALWART CHILLINGWORTH DEAD AT 93 $403,600 1 6 5 Craig Lewis9 $91,196 SANTA ANITA STATISTICS 56% 4 Jorge Velez29 3 5 Richard Mandella15 3 1 $99,064 33% 60% 2 Simon Callaghan10 0 Win% 11% 7 33% 0 2 2 Vann Belvoir6 2 13% $249,576 $117,997 2 1 50% 9 52% Peter Miller14 $199,428 Jeff Mullins18 Eswan Flores12 2 4 3 44% Tiago Pereira21 $31,770 3 1st Money Won 22% 6 BAFFERT ‘COMFORTABLE’ GOING FROM SMITH TO ROSARIOMultiple Grade I winner McKinzie, tepid favorite for the Breeders’ Cup Classic at SantaAnita on Nov. 2, worked four furlongs towards that goal Thursday morning in 49.40 under jockey Drayden Van Dyke.“It was just an easy half,” said trainer Bob Baffert, who brewed a pot of controversy by replacing Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith with Joel Rosario for the $6 million race at a mile and a quarter after Smith finished second on 3-10 favorite McKinzie in the Awesome Again Stakes on Sept. 28.“I think the horse is not real difficult to ride,” Baffert opined. “He went really nice in the work and I think Rosario will do well, but the horse has to show his ability. If he doesn’t, it doesn’t matter who rides him.“I feel comfortable with the change.”BREEDERS’ CUP RACE STILL ON HOLD FOR OMAHA BEACHRichard Mandella had “no decision today” in which Breeders’ Cup race Omaha Beach will run–the $2 million Sprint at six furlongs, the $1 million Big Ass Fans Dirt Mile, or the $6 million Classic at a mile and a quarter, all on Nov. 2 at Santa Anita, which hosts the championship events for a record 10th time starting on Nov. 1.“There won’t be one until I see him train a few days,” Mandella continued. “He just started back, he’s looking great and I’m going to have to study this before I decide what to do.“He’s back to the track and looks great. All options are open.”Omaha Beach made a dramatic and successful return to the races last Saturday after an absence of six months, winning the Grade I Santa Anita Sprint Championship at six furlongs over odds-on favorite Shancelot, powering through on the rail to win by a head.The pre-race choice for the Kentucky Derby on May 4 won the SA Sprint Championship after a myriad of aborted return attempts that kept the three-year-old son of War Front absent from the races since April 13, when he won the Grade I Arkansas Derby on a sloppy track.GYPSY BLU ON THE MARK FOR UPSET OF S Y SKY?It would be an upset of some magnitude if Gypsy Blu defeats S Y Sky in Saturday’s $100,000 California Distaff Handicap not, perhaps, as stunning as Washington’s over the Dodgers, but a shocker nonetheless, even though Gypsy Blu owns a victory over S Y Sky.A five-year-old mare trained by Mark Glatt for Philip Wood and James Hailey, Gypsy Blu defeated S Y Sky by a half-length in the Irish O’Brien Stakes on March 31. That race was on the downhill turf course at about 6 ½ furlongs; Saturday’s race is a furlong shorter.S Y Sky was the 9-10 favorite that day; Gypsy Blu was 3-1.“She’s coming up to the race well enough, and a little pace would help her,” Glatt said of the five-year-old Papa Clem mare that was claimed for $20,000 last Jan. 25 and is coming off three straight races at five furlongs on turf.“I think there’s quite a difference between the 5 ½ furlong races and the five-eighths races, so I think that little bit of extra ground will help her considerably, with her style,” Glatt added. “We’ll hope they blister up front and she can come and get ’em.“She actually had a fair amount of trouble in her last race (third when off slowly Aug. 14 at Del Mar). You can’t really see it on paper, but she probably should have won. That’s the trouble with a closer in those short sprints. They’ve got to negotiate through traffic and she wasn’t able to all that well, but still ran a good race.”The California Distaff Handicap, race seven of nine: S Y Sky, Drayden Van Dyke; Silk From Heaven, Eswan Flores; Gypsy Blu, Abel Cedillo; Queen Bee to You, Ruben Fuentes; Don’t Sell, Mario Gutierrez; and Just Grazed Me, Geovanni Franco.First post time Saturday is 12:30 p.m.XPRESSBET FIRST CALLXpressbet “First Call” is a weekly handicapping and analysis podcast focused on the top Thoroughbred racetracks in America. It features industry veterans Jeff Siegel as the lead handicapper and host Jeremy Plonk.Released each Thursday at XBTV.com and available on-demand thereafter, “First Call” will also include handicapping shorts from John DeSantis (“Johnny D”), with an emphasis on tracks operated by The Stronach Group, as well as many other top North American races as well. “Last Call” will also include a preview of each Friday’s One Dollar Stronach 5.To listen to this weekly “First Call” podcast please visit: https://www.spreaker.com/show/xpressbet-first-call.LONGTIME OAK TREE STALWART CHILLINGWORTH PASSES AT AGE 93Sherwood C. Chillingworth, a longtime director and executive vice president of the Oak Tree Racing Association, passed away on Tuesday at age 93.A native of Honolulu, Hawaii, Chillingworth, known affectionately as “Chilly” to all who knew him, was named an Oak Tree director in 1989, and later assumed the title of Executive Vice President in 1993. A tireless advocate for the many causes that the not-for-profit Oak Tree Racing Association funded since its inception at Santa Anita in October, 1969, Chillingworth was a truly beloved figure in California racing.“He was a great man who was a very big part of the Oak Tree Racing Association for many years,” said Hall of Fame trainer and fellow Oak Tree Board member Richard Mandella on Wednesday morning at Santa Anita. “He lived a full life, and from what I knew, he loved every minute of it. He had a great sense of humor, he loved to bet and he loved our game.”Although still active in funding various charitable causes, the Oak Tree Racing Association, which conducted its final fall meeting at Santa Anita in 2009, operated for one year at Hollywood Park in 2010, and then conducted summer meetings at the Alameda County Fair Grounds in Pleasanton through 2018.A former real estate developer, Chillingworth, who served as Vice Chairman and CEO, Santa Anita Realty Enterprises from 1994-1996, had a true passion for horses and horse racing as he owned and raced Thoroughbreds dating back to the early 1970s under the nom de course Paniolo Ranch.It was in Thoroughbred partnerships, however, that he experienced considerable success, as he owned percentages of Grade I stakes winners Swing Till Dawn (1983 Strub and Widener Stakes), Yashgan (1985 Oak Tree Invitational and 1986 San Gabriel Handicap), Forzando (1985 Metropolitan, Ft. Marcy and Sierra Madre Handicaps), and Valley Victory (1986 Coaching Club American Oaks).“He was a first-class guy,” said Hall of Fame conditioner Ron McAnally, whose legendary gelding John Henry won three straight runnings of the Grade I Oak Tree Invitational in the early 1980s. “Doc Robbins (original Oak Tree Director and John Henry’s attending veterinarian) admired him so much and was so appreciative of everything he meant to Oak Tree and our racing here. Chilly was good for the horses and he was good for the business.”A consummate gentleman and tireless consensus builder, Chillingworth was also a past Steward of the Jockey Club, Secretary of the Board of the Thoroughbred Racing Associations (TRA), director of the Thoroughbred Racing and Protective Bureau (TRPB) and member of the Equibase Management Committee.“Chilly was one of the kindest and most gracious executives in racing,” said George Haines, former Santa Anita General Manager. “He treated the employees with great respect and was universally loved by all. His wit and humor will be missed but not forgotten.”Chillingworth, who resided at Santa Anita Park with his wife Sandra, is also survived by four sons and two daughters, as well as several grandchildren.Services are pending.FINISH LINES: Mitole, likely favorite for the Breeders’ Cup Sprint, worked four furlongs Thursday morning in 48.80 for Steve Asmussen, while Santa Anita Derby winner Roadster went five furlongs for Bob Baffert in a minute flat. 2 Win% 7 $510,305 Money Won 83% 33%
HOMECOMING, GENERAL TOGO and AIR MARSHALL in races two, three and four, respectively, can ensure a good payday for Sunrise Super-6 players at Caymanas Park tomorrow.The island’s only racetrack has been silent for the past two racedays while unionised workers went on strike but HOMECOMING (apprentice Javaniel Patterson up) can welcome back the fans at a good price in the opening Super-6 race over 1600 metres for maiden special weight four-year-olds.Trained by Steven Todd, HOMECOMING has shown little form in her past five races. However, her effort on January 30 was not as bad as the final placing suggested. Going a distance much too short to see her at her best (1000 metres round), HOMECOMING finished fifth by 11 lengths just three lengths behind the second-place horse. Now stretched out to 1600 metres and the handicaps in her favour, courtesy of Patterson’s 4kg claim, she can get the better of ante post favourite BRIDLED PRINCESS. Both have similar best times over the distance but the apprentice’s claim can tilt the balance in favour of HOMECOMING.UPTHEPACEGENERAL TOGO, Barrington Bell aboard, will not be caught in the second Super-6 race (third on the card) over 1700 metres. The conditions of the race are overwhelmingly in favour of the six-year-old. On January 30 he was up with the pace in a 1200 metres race in splits of 23.3×47.3 toting 57kg. He has since dropped 11 pounds to 52kg and is simply too light to lose.Lawrence Freemantle’s AIR MARSHALL can stun rivals in the fourth race (third Super-6) following a bullet work on Ash Wednesday. AIR MARSHALL who was highly fancied (7-2) but showed little on debut last November, breezed the last three furlongs in 35.3 the fastest on the day and looks ready for a big run with Shamaree Muir aboard.BIGDADDYKOOL, third in last year’s Jamaica Two-year-old Stakes, has little to beat in the fourth Super-6 race with just 53kg on his back and regular jockey Shane Ellis aboard. He clocked 1:39.1 on the day and that should be good enough to get the better of his six rivals.FRANCIA’S PRIDE is another who could surprise in race six. She strode 1400 metres in 1:37.1 with new equipment (tongue tie and figure eight) on January 30 and is coming to run a big race tomorrow. She has nothing to fear from PINELOPE who looked average on debut despite being heavily backed to win first time of asking.Close those Super-6s with NEVER GIVE UP (very light). He should stay close to the speed represented by MIRACLE RECOVERY, SPROUTING WINGS and REAL: VIBES MACHINE and outfinish rivals in the last 200 metres.FIRST SUPER-6 FANCIES(2) HOMECOMING/ BRIDLED PRINCESS(3) GENERAL TOGO(4) AIR MARSHALL/MY WAY(5) BIGDADDYKOOL(6) FRANCIA’S PRIDE/PINELOPE(7) NEVER GIVE UP
Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Tyronn Lue was sacked by the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday, Oct. 28, 2018, after the club suffered its 6th straight loss for a league-worst 0-6 start. AFPWASHINGTON, United States – Tyronn Lue, who coached the Cleveland Cavaliers to the 2016 NBA title, was fired Sunday after the club’s latest loss in a league-worst 0-6 start, the club confirmed.The announcement by Cavaliers general manager Koby Altman came after Indiana beat Cleveland 119-107 Saturday with associate coach Larry Drew being promoted to interim coach.ADVERTISEMENT Kings, Aces secure bonus In a statement to ESPN, Lue thanked Altman, former Cavs general manager David Griffin and team owner Dan Gilbert.“My time here in Cleveland was truly special,” Lue said. “I am very grateful for the dedication, sacrifice, and support of all the players on our team, the tremendous coaches I worked with and of course, our incredible fans.“Lastly, deep thanks to Dan Gilbert, David Griffin and Koby Altman for the opportunity over the last three years and I only wish the organization success moving forward.”Drew, 60, has a 143-169 record as an NBA coach in three seasons with Atlanta from 2010 through 2013 and the 2013-14 campaign with Milwaukee. he joined the Cavs’ staff in 2014 after the Bucks hired Jason Kidd as their coach.Drew went 8-1 last season guiding the Cavs while Lue was out with an illness. /cbbSports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew “This was a very difficult decision,” Altman said. “It is especially so, considering Coach Lue’s time with us over the last four years, including four straight trips to the NBA Finals.”Former associate coach Lue took over the LeBron James-led Cavs in January 2016 after the mid-season firing of Dave Blatt and guided Cleveland to its first NBA crown and the first for any team in the city since the 1964 NFL Browns.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissBut James departed in the off-season for the Los Angeles Lakers and little was expected of the Cavs this season.“We have respect and great admiration for Ty, not only as a coach, but a person,” Altman said. “We thank him for the many ways he has contributed to our success, wish him the best and he will always be remembered for leading a very special Cavs team back against the odds to win the title in 2016. Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal View comments Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew MOST READ LATEST STORIES Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum “This is a different team equation, though, and one that we felt needed a different voice and approach that required this change.”James tweeted his appreciation for Lue on Sunday afternoon.“T Lue thanks for the memories and more importantly our partnership bringing a (trophy) to that deserved city/fan base. U know how to find me,” James tweeted.Lue, 41, went 128-83 in just over 2 1/2 seasons as the Cavaliers coach with a 41-20 record in the playoffs.But with James gone, not even three consecutive trips to the finals in his first three seasons as coach could save Lue. The Cavs have not led this season in the second half and are off to their worst start since 1995.ADVERTISEMENT Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title
After pronouncing a guilty verdict against Amo Contractor Company, an engineering entity, Judge James Jones of the Debt Court has authorized the sale of the company’s properties.The property, which includes a one and a half lot with four buildings, is situated on Duport Road in Paynesville, outside of Monrovia.Judge Jones’ decision was based on company owner Arnold B. Flahn’s refusal to repay a US$852,637 loan, including interest, to International Bank (IB).Amo Construction was hired by the Press Union of Liberia (PUL) to construct its controversial headquarters, which is currently at the center of a legal dispute.The bank filed an “Action of Debt by Attachment” against Amo Construction Company and its owner, Mr. Arnold B. Flahn, asking the court to attach the company’s properties to settle the loan.The request was granted by Judge Jones’ September 9 ruling during which he advised Mr. Flahn to repay the loan and other expenses, including court charges – which he failed to do.“Since Mr. Arnold B. Flahn has failed to make full settlement of his obligation to the International Bank, which is to the tone of US$852,637, including other charges, his assets will be publicly auctioned to the highest bidder,” said Judge Jones. “The Court through its Sheriff issued a Writ of Execution and it was served and returned. Based upon a bid on November 14 at the Temple of Justice Mr. Flahn’s assets will be awarded to the highest bidder.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Rivers and creeks are drying up in Morris Farm, a community of about 50,000 inhabitants northeast of Paynesville City.Among the most affected water ways are Mango and Gbeh rivers and Desert Hill and Crab Hole creeks.Several inhabitants of Morris Farm told the Daily Observer during the weekend that they have to get up as early as 4:30 a.m. to be able to get water for domestic use from the remaining hand pumps in the area.Owners of restaurants, tuck shops, bars and other entertainment centers also complained that they are having problems accessing safe drinking water for their customers.“We encountered some serious difficulties in catering to our Christmas Day customers,” restaurant proprietress Hawa B. Giddings said. She added that she has considerably reduced the quantity of food she prepares every day as a result of the constant lack of sufficient water.“I would like for the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation (LWSC) during this dry season to extend its water connection to our community,” Mrs. Giddings said.Resident Milton M. Bleetan said the swamp land, which was brushed and burnt in preparation for planting corn, cucumber, bitter ball and okra, dried up in November. He added that the small creek that he used to rely on to plant cash crops dried up on December 5.“I would like for agriculture extension officers from the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) to come and help us with new methods for planting and maintaining our wells,” Mr. Bleetan pleaded. Many residents, however, said that they still get water from hand pumps in the area, but that they find it difficult to get the quantity of water they need.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
However, on Sunday Leipzig insisted once and for all that Keita will not leave before the end of the season.“OFFICIAL: Naby #Keita will remain an #RBLeipzig player until 30th June 2018. We wish to put the speculation about a January move to @LFC (Liverpool) to bed,” RB Leipzig wrote on their official Twitter account.Leipzig then tweeted a quote from their director of sport Ralf Rangnick.“We won’t allow Liverpool to sign him early, even though they have shown renewed interest to bring him in during this transfer window,” said Rangnick.The midfielder showed his class with a superb deflected goal from the edge of the box in Saturday’s 3-1 home win over Schalke, a victory that moved Leipzig up to second in the league table.Germany’s top-selling daily Bild ran the headline “Bye-bye goal for Keita?” and many other German media outlets speculated earlier on Sunday that this was his final match for Leipzig.Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool are set to pay around 70 million euros for the midfielder when he joins in July, but reports claim they would have had to pay an extra 15 million for Leipzig to release Keita this January.0Shares0000(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Leipzig midfielder Naby Keita (L) and Schalke midfielder Max Meyer vie for the ball during the German first division Bundesliga match in Leipzig, eastern Germany on January 13, 2018 © AFP / Robert MICHAELBERLIN, Germany, Jan 14 – RB Leipzig on Sunday ruled out an early switch to Liverpool for their star midfielder Naby Keita, who is scheduled to join the Merseyside giants next season.The 22-year-old has a contract to join Liverpool in the next transfer window, but Liverpool reportedly wanted the Guinean to join them sooner after selling Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona last week for 160 million euros..
0Shares0000Barcelona star Andres Iniesta’s Far East move will have been noted by players who might hitherto have considered China a more lucrative destination © JIJI PRESS/AFP / JIJI PRESSTOKYO, Japan, May 25 – Barcelona legend Andres Iniesta’s decision to join Japan’s Vissel Kobe could make the J-League a serious option for the world’s top footballers, former Shimizu S-Pulse manager Steve Perryman said.The 34-year-old Spanish World Cup winner, who lifted 32 major trophies at Barca and made over 600 appearances for the Catalan giants, completed a big-money move to Japan on Thursday after bidding a tearful farewell to the Nou Camp last weekend. Iniesta’s Far East move will have been noted by players who might hitherto have considered China a more lucrative destination, Perryman told AFP in an interview.“As soon as a top player like Iniesta decides to go to Japan it becomes an option for other people,” said the former Tottenham Hotspur captain, who coached at J-League clubs S-Pulse and Kashiwa Reysol between 1996 to 2002.“It gives the J-League credibility but it’s about what Iniesta brings with him in terms of his ethos and work ethic,” added Perryman.“You want people to lead in the right manner and history tells you that this man does things the right way.”Perryman moved to Japan in 1996 as assistant coach to Argentine Ossie Ardiles at S-Pulse.The former Spurs teammates briefly crossed swords with Arsene Wenger — then manager at Nagoya Grampus Eight — in a fledgling J-League still buzzing after its launch in 1993 when the likes of Zico and Gary Lineker played out their careers there.“It was a league that was looking to be led and the timing for both Wenger and Japan was brilliant,” recalled Perryman, who took over as Shimizu manager in 1999.“Wenger was perfect. He was a winner.”– Big in Japan –Perryman expects Iniesta to have as big an impact as the Frenchman on a J-League that has struggled to attract marquee players in recent years.“Football is about risk, but I’m sure Iniesta will repay Kobe with his professional attitude,” said the 66-year-old director of football at English fourth-tier club Exeter City.“It has to be backed up by success but I expect the other clubs are looking at that now and asking if they should enter the race for players of this quality.”Vissel, whose billionaire owner Hiroshi Mikitani is also the CEO of Barcelona’s main sponsor Rakuten, did sign German World Cup winner Lukas Podolski last year.But bringing in Iniesta bucks the trend of top players moving to rich Chinese clubs in the twilight of their careers in spectacular fashion.“There’s expertise in Japan but you need expertise on the field itself for Japanese players to be able to follow,” said Perryman, backing Iniesta’s experience and professionalism to rub off on his new teammates.“You’re looking for his attitude at training and in preparing for games,” added Perryman, who steered S-Pulse to an Asian Cup Winners Cup title.“Not just finish training, shower and be gone in five minutes. Be part of it. That’s obviously what they’ve done at Barcelona.“That is a group of players that plays together and Iniesta wants that in his next club. But I’m sure that’s part of the decision-making by Kobe to know that.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
0Shares0000Thibaut Courtois denies he poked fun at England ‘keeper Jordan Pickford’s height © AFP / EMMANUEL DUNANDKAZAN, Russian Federation, Jul 6 – Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois said that he did not mock England counterpart Jordan Pickford’s height after their World Cup group-stage match last week.Courtois made a string of fine saves in Kazan on Friday as Belgium secured arguably the greatest result in their history with a 2-1 win over Brazil to reach the semi-finals for only the second time. But the Chelsea man was keen to clear the air after it was reported he said Pickford was “too small” to be a top-level ‘keeper.“This thing about Jordan Pickford, I want to make it clear, I never mocked his height, he is a great goalkeeper. I want to make that clear,” the 26-year-old told the BBC.Jordan Pickford saved the penalty that paved the way for England to beat Colombia in a shootout © AFP / Juan MabromataPickford, who is 6 feet 1 inch (185 centimetres) tall, had been criticised for failing to save Adnan Januzaj’s winner when Belgium beat England 1-0 last Thursday top Group G.“I would never do that to another goalkeeper (criticise his height). I just meant that being 15 centimetres taller, I would have got the ball,” he added.It had been suggested that finishing second in the group behind England would have given Belgium an easier passage through the knockout rounds, but Courtois insisted that never crossed the players’ minds.“This team wants to win every game. Against England people said it was better to lose but we won the game, we have confidence in our team.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)