Transfer window madness

first_imgThe silly season is upon us – and at Loftus Road it’s positively bonkers.For the past few days, QPR have single-handedly kept Sky Sports News in stories.Reports suggest their hardy reporter has abandoned the idea of commuting in from their HQ near Heathrow every time a Rangers story breaks and is currently holed up in a two-up two-down on the Uxbridge Road, ready to dash down at a moment’s notice.Never mind the Four-Year Plan, the four-week version is providing enough tittle-tattle to keep Dot Cotton going until Christmas.First we had the sacking of Neil Warnock, which had everyone raising their eyebrows apart from the man himself, who’s still searching for his. “If I never hear the words ‘howay, man and pet’ in the same sentence again it will be too soon.”The tears had barely dried when Mark Hughes was unveiled as his successor – and then the real fun began.Tabloid football journalists have long been renowned for doing a lucky dip with players and teams – cobbling together a story about the first pair they pick out.In Rangers’ case they don’t need to bother.Granted, the Carlos Tevez suggestion may have been a little fanciful, but in the past week alone QPR are said to have been interested in (deep breath) Chris Samba, Andy Johnson, Alex, Nedum Onuoha, Bobby Zamora, Wayne Bridge, Niko Kranjcar, Henrique and Taye Taiwo.The last time I saw that many links, Mr T was wearing them around his neck. It’s a good job transfer deadline supremo Jim White has already gone grey.As if that wasn’t enough to be going on with, there was also the small matter of the FA Cup replay against Milton Keynes Dons – or ‘McDons’ as my little girl likes to phonetically call them.Don’t laugh – it’s only a matter of time before they colonise Scotland – be afraid, Dons of Aberdeen, be very afraid.The magic of the Cup always throws up a major upset where the underdog has its day and this year was no different as unfancied QPR somehow scraped home for a first triumph in the competition since 2001, when Tony Blair was still in his first term as prime minister and Hear’say were the biggest band in Britain.Danny Gabbidon scored his first goal for seven years to silence the MK Dons, who regaled the home crowd with their hilarious rendition of “Sit down or we’ll steal your club.”I was a little disappointed the R’s faithful didn’t respond with that Leeds classic from a few years back: “Who did you support before?”The 1-0 win, setting up the small matter of a fourth-round tie with Chelsea (more on that next week) came three days after Rangers lost by the same score up in freezing Newcastle.While QPR fans were sensibly dressed like Scott of the Antarctic, some of their Geordie counterparts looked as though they were heading for the beach.For my sins, I was sat with my Magpie mate in the midst of the Toon Army – and if I never hear the words ‘howay, man and pet’ in the same sentence again it will be too soon.Although fair play to them for the chant to Hughes at the final whistle: “You’re getting sacked in the morning!”Just to top the week off, Warnock raised his head above the parapet to have a thinly-veiled swipe at Tony Fernandes, Joey Barton and the tweeting culture within the club.Sparky’s mate Martin.It seemed a little odd to suddenly start having a pop now after he had exited with such good grace…until I suddenly remembered how many working days it takes for a redundancy cheque to clear.Meanwhile, the name Mark Hughes was popping up in so many places I half expected him to score for Barnet in an unlikely 3-0 win at in-form Accrington and blow me down, that’s exactly what happened.Fulham boss Martin Jol certainly had plenty to say about his predecessor, snapping: “If you look at all the clubs he has managed, it has been two years at most.” (Apart from the five years he had with Wales and the four-year stint at Blackburn.)Fulham’s topsy-turvy season continued as a 4-0 demolition of Charlton in the Cup was followed by a 2-1 reverse to 10-man Blackburn, but neighbours Chelsea had better fortune as they consolidated fourth place with a 1-0 win over Sunderland.Fernando Torres was an inch away from scoring the goal of the season when his acrobatic volley cannoned off the bar to the grateful Frank Lampard, who gobbled up the chance like the fried breakfasts he used to put away in his youth.He might not have got the goal he craves, but Torres looks to have finally rediscovered his best form just in time for that little FA Cup encounter next week – oh joy.But we’ll leave the last word to Brentford fans on the Griffin Park Grapevine forum, who were asked to give their highlights of the 0-0 shocker with Walsall.‘Greenholme Bee’ wrote: “Staying at home watching the darts”, while ‘nocoat’ added: “Bringing my son. My life has been ruined by BFC and it is nice to be able to destroy his as well.”And a happy new year to you too.Follow Chris on Twitterlast_img read more

‘Assam, Arunachal can resolve border dispute’

first_imgAssam Minister Ranjit Dutta, who was in Itanagar to attend a tribal festival, exuded confidence that the decades-old boundary dispute between the two States, both BJP-ruled, can be resolved through “meaningful” dialogue.Permanent solutionAssam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has been initiating measures with his Arunachal counterpart Pema Khandu to hammer out a permanent solution to the border issue, the Assam Irrigation Minister said on Monday in his address at the Nyokum Yullo festival.The festival is celebrated by the Nyishi community of Arunachal Pradesh every year to invoke God’s blessings for good harvest and communal harmony.Clad in Nyishi Bopia (headgear), Mr. Dutta, who attended the festival on behalf of Mr. Sonowal, said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi is serious about the dispute between Northeast States, so is Sonowal. The Chief Minister has already initiated a similar dialogue with his Nagaland counterpart T.R. Zeliang.” Stating that “divisive forces” were trying to “destabilise peace” in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, Mr. Dutta called upon the people of both the States to thwart such attempts.‘Cordial relations’ “Till 1978 both the States (Assam and Arunachal Pradesh) were under one administrative unit of ‘bor Axom’ (Greater Assam). The people of both States since time immemorial have been maintaining cordial relations,” the Minister said.Mr. Dutta called upon the Assamese people staying in Arunachal Pradesh to uphold the age-old relations through cultural exchange programmes.Lauding the Nyishi community for preserving the age-old culture and traditions, Mr. Dutta exhorted the elderly people in the State to pass on the baton of tradition and culture to the younger generations. Nyokum Yullo Celebration Committee chairman Ha Tatu, on his part, said the presence of a Minister from neighbouring Assam will cement the ties between the people of the two States.last_img read more

Fire damages property at Army camp near LoC

first_imgThe Army on Tuesday said a fire broke out in north Kashmir’s Machil Sector, resulting in the damage of infrastructure. An Army spokesman said the fire broke out at 2 p.m. and was brought under control. “Some damage to property took place,” said the spokesman, without divulging any details.Unofficial reports suggest an entire Army camp was taken over by the flames located close to the Line of Control in the Machil Sector in Kupwara. It housed the soldiers of the Army’s 44 Rashtriya Rifles headquartered at Hamar Gali in the Machil sector.The fire damaged large parts of the camp, which housed oil barrels and some ammunition. However, the Army has been silent over the details of the damage. “There was no loss of life. The cause of the fire is being ascertained,” said the Army spokesman.last_img read more

St. Clare slips past Perpetual

first_imgMOST READ Families in US enclave in north Mexico hold sad Thanksgiving Read Next John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Gamboa Coffee Mix-St. Clare clawed its way back from a 12-point hole in the fourth quarter to overcome Perpetual, 78-73, on Monday in the 2018 PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup at JCSGO Gym in Cubao, Quezon City.The Coffee Lovers overhauled a 61-49 deficit early in the payoff period with a 17-4 run to take a 66-65 lead before silencing the Altas in the clutch.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Iya Villania meets ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ cast in Mexico Pussycat Dolls set for reunion tour after 10-year hiatus 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 “We adjusted our defense and played our match-ups well,” said coach Jinino Manansala, as Gamboa-St. Clare raised its mark to 3-2.Aris Dionisio poured in 21 points for Gamboa.In the second game, Wangs Basketball-Letran capitalized on its 18-day rest and pounded Jose Rizal University, 73-55, to halt its two-game losing skid and tie Gamboa. —RANDOLPH B. LEONGSON, INQUIRER.NETGAMBOA-ST. CLARE 78—Dionisio 21, Pare 16, Jackson 11, Bitoon 10, Ambuludto 7, Rebugio 6, Hallare 5, Acuno 2, Alcober 0, Fontanilla 0, Rubio 0.PERPETUAL 73—Peralta 17, Villanueva 13, Charcos 12, Aurin 11, Eze 11, Coronel 6, Pido 3, Mangalino 0, Precillas 0, Tiburcio 0.Quarters: 12-21, 31-41, 49-57, 78-73FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout View comments AFP official booed out of forum Lewton to defend PH Open crown Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Google honors food scientist, banana ketchup inventor and war hero Maria Orosa Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. last_img read more

CA attempt to take cut from IPL salary unacceptable: ACA

first_imgThe Australian players are being urged to refuse to sign Cricket Australia (CA) contracts next year as a row brews over an attempt to cut 10 per cent of their pay from the Indian Premier League (IPL). If the threat is followed through, it could cause a bitter stand-off between the players and the administrators. The Australian Cricketers Association (ACA) is fuming over what it sees as a backroom deal between CA and other boards with the Indian administrators to garnish millions of dollars from players’ contracts. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), which runs the IPL, has ruled that 10 per cent of foreign players’ wages will now go to their respective boards. In talks with player representatives last year, the association pushed for a similar cut, but this was rejected by the players. Players’ association chief executive Paul Marsh has been outraged at the latest decision. “The Australian Cricketers Association has made it known to Cricket Australia that any attempt to take 10 per cent, or any other amount for that matter, from the IPL salaries of Australian players is completely unacceptable and will be opposed in the strongest possible way by us,” Australian media quoted Marsh. “CA simply has no right to effectively charge a commission on income earned by players from outside their employment to CA. Should they seek to do so, we would expect players to give serious consideration to either not signing an IPL contract that contains this deduction, or not signing future CA contracts,” Marsh added.advertisementlast_img read more

Liverpool move ‘worst mistake of my life’: Mario Balotelli

first_imgStriker Mario Balotelli described his spell with Liverpool as ‘the worst mistake of my life’ after he scored twice in his Ligue 1 debut with Nice on Sunday.The 26-year-old former Inter Milan and Manchester City forward helped Nice to a 3-2 win over Olympique Marseille to leave his team second in league standings, behind leaders Monaco on goal difference.Balotelli scored only once in 16 Premier League appearances in his first season at the Merseyside club and was sent back to AC Milan on loan last season in an injury-hit campaign.”I joined Liverpool (in 2014)…it was the worst mistake of my life. Apart from the fans, who were fantastic with me, I must be honest, and the players, who I had a good rapport with, I didn’t like the club,” Balotelli told reporters in France. (Also read: Italian striker Mario Balotelli leaves Liverpool for Nice)”I had two coaches, Brendan Rodgers and Juergen Klopp. As people they didn’t make a good impression on me. I didn’t get along with them.”Balotelli, who won the Champions League and three Serie A titles with Inter Milan and lifted the English top flight crown with City, believes he still has a chance of winning the Ballon d’Or.”Of course. It’s not too late. I think I could have already won it by now, but by working hard in training I could still win it in the next two or three years,” Balotelli added.last_img read more


first_imgIowa Senator Chuck Grassley says he supports the troop buildup on the U-S border with Mexico as a caravan of several thousand Central American migrants approaches.Initially, 800 active duty soldiers were going to be dispatched to the border.Now, the number is over five-thousand troops, combined with another two-thousand-plus National Guard members who were already assigned there.Grassley says. “We should protect our borders.”Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC………”our borders” (2X) :18More than 73-hundred troops should be at the border before Election Day, which is reportedly more American soldiers than are now deployed in Iraq and Syria combined.Grassley says the U-S would welcome these people — if they’d follow the rules.Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.[mkcg1] :18 “country legally” :18Grassley says he wouldn’t want anyone who’s already in the U-S legally to be “displaced,” but he believes there’s plenty of room — and opportunity — here for these migrants, should they choose to enter legally.Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.[mkcg2] :19 “what we need”The troops are being deployed to three main staging areas in Texas, California and Mexico for what’s being called Operation Faithful Patriot.The armed troops include medical personnel, aviation units and engineering battalions, with one report saying they’re hauling 22 miles worth of barbed wire.last_img read more

After sting operation video Ameesha Patel lands in Rs 25 crore fraud

first_imgAmeesha PatelAmeesha Patel Instagram pageAmeesha Patel, who has given the industry some memorable films to cherish, has been missing from the limelight for quite some time now. And whenever the diva does enter the spotlight, more often than not, it is for all the wrong reasons. After the sting operation video of Ameesha Patel agreeing to publicise a certain political party in lieu of money made it its way to the internet, Ms Patel, seems to have landed herself in another controversy.As per a report in Mumbai Mirror, a financier and film producer has lodged a case against Ameesha Patel and her business partner Kunal Goomer for cheating him of Rs 2.5 crore. The producer Ajay Kumar Singh has alleged that he had lent Rs 2.5 crore to the duo for their film – Desi Magic – which hasn’t seen the light of the day. Not just that, Singh has alleged that the duo gave him a cheque of Rs 3 crore which bounced and when the financier went back to them again, he was apparently told that they have no intentions of returning the money.”I had given Ameesha and Kuunal Rs 2.5 crore when they visited Ranchi in March last year for an event. They had told me the film would release by June 2018 and would be a profitable venture for me. It has yet to arrive at the theatres and when I badgered them, they promised to return my money with interest in two-three months. They even gave me a cheque of Rs 3 crore but it bounced and when I went back to them, they told me this time that they had no intention of refunding my money,” Ajay Singh told the daily.The producer and financier has now moved to court alleging fraud and cheque bouncing case.last_img read more

ONGC RIL to gain as gas prices set for a steep hike

first_imgA technician is pictured inside a desalter plant of Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, India, September 30, 2016.Reuters fileCompanies such as Oil & Natural Gas Corp and Reliance Industries will be the biggest beneficiaries, if the government raises domestic natural gas prices next week.Indian government may raise domestic natural gas prices to its highest level in two years, PTI reported on Thursday citing sources close to the development.Price paid to most of natural gas produced from domestic fields is likely to be hiked to $3.06 per million British thermal unit (mmbtu) from April 1, from current $2.89, the report said.The move, if implemented, will translate into higher compressed natural gas (CNG) price and increase cost of electricity and urea production.For every one dollar rise in natural gas price, state-run ONGC’s annual net revenue increases by Rs 4,000 crore and net profit by Rs 2,300 crore.The impact on oil-to-telecom conglomerate Reliance Industries’ profitability is not likely to be as significant given the company’s low gas production of about 4.9 million metric standard cubic meters per day.While the increase in gas price will boost earnings of producers, it will also lead to a rise in CNG price and natural gas piped to households.As per the new gas pricing formula, gas prices are to be revised every six months based on average rates in gas-surplus nations like the U.S., Russia and Canada.Gas price was last hiked to $2.89 per mmbtu for October 2017 to March 2018 period from $2.48 earlier, which was the first hike in nearly three years.last_img read more

Bidhannagar Police inaugurates kiosk at airport arrival point

first_imgKolkata: The Bidhannagar City Police on Monday inaugurated a police kiosk at the airport arrival point near gate 2B.”It will work round-the-clock as an assistance booth, along with prepaid taxi booking facility. The kiosk’s construction has been in accordance with the aesthetics of the airport,” a senior police official of Bidhannagar Commissionerate said. The programme was attended by Commissioner of Police, Bidhannagar, Gyanwant Singh, Airport director Atul Dikshit and senior CISF officials. The police are hopeful that the kiosk will play an important role to facilitate the passengers in availing taxi from the airport. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe Airports Authority of India (AAI) has recently urged Bidhannagar City Police to regulate and streamline the movement of the yellow taxis and the app cabs to reduce the waiting time of passengers, after they land at Kolkata Airport, at the Airport Advisory Committee (AAC) meeting. “The drivers of yellow taxis have a tendency to take over the entire pick up lane at the airport arrival level, resulting in congestion and passengers booking app cabs have to wait for a long time. These yellow taxis flout rules and invade the portion of the lane meant for Uber and Ola cabs, to block their way,” a senior AAI official said.last_img read more