What sort of welcome will World Cup visitors get in Russia?

first_imgThere won’t be an “Oranje” army in Russia, because the Dutch failed to qualify, but there will still be the clapping Icelanders, the chanting English and the distinctive personalities of the supporters of the other 29 visiting countries.The differing languages, songs, flags and fan cultures of the world will energise the streets of Russia’s host cities until the middle of July.The figure of one million seems to have been reached by a surprisingly unscientific manner. FIFA has deducted the number of tickets sold to Russians, 872,578, from the two million it says have been sold in total.The biggest demand, outside the host nation, has come from the United States, whose team failed to qualify, with 86,710 sold. Then comes Brazil (71,787), Colombia (64,231) and Germany (60,457). The English are not even in the top ten.Russia’s objective, organising committee chief Alexei Sorokin said, is to show fans “an unforgettable, colourful Russia.”– $13 billion in infrastructure –Around $450 million was spent on Sochi’s Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi © AFP/File / Mladen ANTONOVRussia has spent a whopping $13 billion (11 billion euros) on infrastructure.“The airports in six cities have new terminals, 21 new hotels have been built in host cities,” Sorokin said in May, adding that “14 hospitals have been re-equipped for the tournament.”“Nothing is superfluous,” he said. “We needed them.”“This fulfils a regional planning objective which is in effect catching up on the lack of investment over the last 20 years,” said Jean-Baptiste Guegan, one of the authors of a book investigating Russian football.He added that the goal was also to present a “radiant and attractive” image and give visitors the best possible experience so they would go home and recommend Russia as a tourist destination.– Free transport and Fan IDFIFA president Gianni Infantino told AFP this week that “I have never seen a country that has done so much to welcome the fans”. They will certainly be able to get between the host cities on trains, although in reality the vast majority who benefit will be Russian nationals. Sorokin said 700 additional trains would be laid on.“It’s a good system but what they are offering is insufficient and the vast majority of trains are already reserved,” said Ronan Evain, head of Football Supporters Europe (FSE), an umbrella organisation of supporters in 40 countries.– Accommodation concernsThis could be a concern because some owners of apartments in host cities have sharply increased their prices. Some owners have cancelled bookings, and are now demanding higher prices than they originally advertised. Many fans complained of similar tactics in the Ukrainian capital Kiev in May when Liverpool played Real Madrid in the Champions League final.Evain said: “In Moscow, things are starting to balance out because there is an enormous choice of accommodation, but in cities which are not as used to having tourist visitors, like Saransk and Nizhny Novgorod, prices are shooting up.”– Language barrier and human rightsLGBT activists take part in a May Day rally in Saint Petersburg in May this year © AFP/File / OLGA MALTSEVAThe question of how foreign visitors will be received in Russia remains to be seen. “A lot has been done to train volunteers and the security forces to avoid racism,” said Sylvia Schenk, of Transparency International who also sits on a FIFA committee on human rights.But in a country where black footballers are still occasionally subjected to monkey chants, there is an obvious risk of racist incidents.A 2013 law in Russia makes homosexual “propaganda” a criminal offence if it is distributed to young people. FIFA has succeeded in negotiating with Russian authorities so that the rainbow flag, the symbol of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender pride, can be displayed in stadiums during the tournament.“The rainbow flag will be allowed in stadiums for example. Is it solving all the issues of Russia with gay people? No, but it is a step,” Infantino told AFP.Schenk, from Transparency International, said: “There will also be a ‘House of Pride’ in Moscow run by Russia NGOs and FIFA, and the authorities have confirmed that no-one will be prosecuted.”In terms of the training of volunteers, “many have not been given any training in English”, Evain from the Football Supporters Europe (FSE) group said.“It won’t necessarily be a problem unless there is a problem like an illness or a specific request from an elderly supporter, for example, bearing in mind that security measures mean spectators might have to walk several kilometres to the stadium.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Senegal supporters will follow their team in Russia © AFP/File / SEYLLOUMOSCOW, Russian Federation, Jun 7 – World Cup organisers say the competition will draw more than one million fans to Russia, creating challenges that range from the logistical to the cultural for the hosts and their guests.– One million expected –last_img read more

Kurtenbach: Tua to the Raiders? It’s all setting up just right

first_imgAs I wrote earlier this week, Raiders quarterback Derek Carr should be playing for his job on Sunday.A competent organization treats Raiders-Titans as a referendum on the sixth-year quarterback.Because not only is the Raiders’ game against the Titans a de-facto play-in game for the postseason, on a more basic level, given the way Carr has played the last two games — given the way Carr has played the last three seasons — if he cannot beat Ryan Tannehill, at home, in a must-win game, then he’s …last_img read more

Tyson Fury promises ‘three big fights’ in 2018

first_imgDon’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIES Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  Read Next Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH British heavyweight boxer Tyson Fury./ AFP PHOTO / OLI SCARFFBritain’s troubled former heavyweight world champion Tyson Fury said Thursday he will return to the ring in April and is looking forward to “three big fights” in 2018.The 29-year-old has not fought since his shock defeat of Wladimir Klitschko to win the WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight titles in November 2015.ADVERTISEMENT Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics PLAY LIST 00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’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 Games Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMCcenter_img Japan eye record gold haul at Tokyo 2020 BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary MOST READ He was at ringside last month when his cousin Hughie Fury came up short in his bid to take the WBO heavyweight title from champion Joseph Parker in Manchester. View comments Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Fury had his licence suspended last October when he admitted he was using cocaine and struggling with depression, and last week said he would not apply for a new one.But he wrote on Twitter on Thursday that he would “be ready to fight in April 2018 in a great fight”.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutHe added he would then take part “in the summer in a mega fight” and return again at the “back end” of the year.Fury, who twice postponed rematches with Klitschko, had hoped to return to the ring earlier this year but that plan was scuppered when his UK Anti-Doping hearing was adjourned in May.last_img read more

Ateneo shoots for UAAP crown

first_imgLATEST STORIES Do not bring these items in SEA Games venues Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Read Next Cayetano: 4 social media groups behind SEA Games ‘sabotage’ The Archers, however, are caught in unfamiliar territory for the first time in the two-year tenure of coach Aldin Ayo, who steered the team to the title last year at the expense of Ateneo.And as much as they tried to take the loss in Game 1 in stride, the fact remains that they’ll be no room for error for the Archers on Wednesday, and, if necessary, in Game 3 on Sunday.“Our performance was lacking in Game 1. We need to make better decisions (in Game 2),” said La Salle guard Aljun Melecio, who had 24 points in Game 1.The Eagles, though, are already bracing for the mighty comeback from the Archers.“They’re the favorites, they’re the defending champs, and for sure they’re going to come out next game motivated, with adjustments,” said Ateneo assistant coach Sandy Arespacochaga. MOST READ It all sets up for another heated and physical battle between collegiate basketball’s fiercest rivals in Game 2 on Wednesday as the series shifts to the Smart Araneta Coliseum, where the Archers have already beaten the Eagles this season.“It’s the second battle of a long war,” said Ateneo coach Tab Baldwin. “We anticipate a physical game. You get that all the time with La Salle. La Salle won’t be any different in Game 2.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutBaldwin has already accused the Archers of “pushing the rules to the limit” after the series opener that saw the Eagles prevail, 76-70.“It would be silly to think otherwise because they’re good at it,” said Baldwin, referring to the Archers’ physical play. “They push the rules to the limit, the referees to the limit.” Asian shares slide on weak Japan data; US markets closed 8th Top Leaders Forum assessed the progress of public-private efforts in building climate and disaster resilient communities Local aces bare plans on how to tame Luisita On the cusp of punctuating their magical run with a crown, the Ateneo Blue Eagles insist their mission is far from finished, aware of the Herculean task of toppling the reigning champions.With their backs against the wall, the La Salle Green Archers remain defiant, confident they can send the UAAP Season 80 best-of-three championship series to a deciding game.ADVERTISEMENT BI on alert for illegally deployed OFWs to Iraq Ateneo guard Matt Nieto actually sustained a nasty cut over his left eye after getting hit by an inadvertent Ben Mbala elbow in the second period. But the play proved telling as it pumped up the Eagles, particularly Mike Nieto, who sparked the second half surge that propelled Ateneo.The Archers were held scoreless in the last two and a half minutes of Game 1, with reigning Most Valuable Player Ben Mbala typifying their struggles with a career-low eight points on just seven shots.“We have to stick to our game plan,” said Mbala. “If coach has a perfect and splendid game plan for us, we just have to stick to the game plan and play together as a team. And we got outrebounded in Game 1 and that is something that shouldn’t happen, we are one of the best rebounding teams in the league, and we gotta be able to do what we do best and that is rebounding, and run and gun.The Archers aren’t about to surrender their crown just yet.“We’re the defending champions,” said La Salle skipper Kib Montalbo. “I couldn’t consider our team as the underdog. It’s just two great teams battling it out. It’s one hell of a series.”ADVERTISEMENT View comments Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:00Chief Justice Peralta on upcoming UAAP game: UP has no match against UST01:29Police 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 Citylast_img read more

10 months ago​West Ham star Nasri: I cried for first time in my career

first_imgAbout the authorAnsser SadiqShare the loveHave your say ​West Ham star Nasri: I cried for first time in my careerby Ansser Sadiq10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveWest Ham United star Samir Nasri has admitted that he cried when he thought that his career was over.Nasri was banned from football for 18 months for violating a drug policy, due to taking an intravenous drip for hydration.Now he is back in the Premier League and he cannot believe how things have turned around for him.”I’m a guy who, mentally, I’m really strong, but for maybe the first time in my life, I cried about my career because I thought it was over,” Nasri told West Ham’s official website.”I had some really tough moments when I was really down.”But now, coming back to the most competitive league in the world, with a team full of ambition with a manager that I know, and with a stadium like this… Man! It’s the best job in the world!”The competition, the dressing room, and to be back on the pitch, that’s what I was waiting for, for a whole year.”I’m looking forward to the next game, a derby against Arsenal so I’m sure the atmosphere will be even more crazy.” last_img read more

11 days agoLeicester goalkeeper Schmeichel proud to reach 50 caps with Denmark

first_imgLeicester goalkeeper Schmeichel proud to reach 50 caps with Denmarkby Paul Vegas11 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveLeicester City goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel is proud to have reached 50 caps with Denmark.Schmeichel produced a stunning performance on Saturday night to record a clean sheet on his 50th outing for his country, an appearance that saw him match Andy King as City’s most-capped player.The 32-year-old stopper made four high-class saves to keep Switzerland at bay, Yussuf Poulsen’s goal in the final 10 minutes sealing a 1-0 victory that boosts Denmark’s chances of reaching the Euro 2020 finals. “I don’t know if it was my best international match – but at least it was important,” Schmeichel said after the win.“It was a fantastic and really, really important victory. It wasn’t our best international match, but we fought and fought all the way through, and it’s incredibly important.“It was a big motivating factor that I was not involved in the national team earlier in my career, but I am grateful to be part of it now and it makes me proud to play 50 games for my country. Now I just hope for 50 more.“If I don’t last five years, then I will be disappointed.“You can’t plan for football. Anything can happen. You can get hurt tomorrow and not have the opportunity to come back, so you have to be grateful every time you are teamed up with the national team.“Every match I get to play in front of such a crowd, I am incredibly grateful for, because it happens so rarely. We must be proud of all the matches we can fight on the national team.”Asked if he’s improved over recent years, Schmeichel joked: “I always think I’ve been so good.“I don’t know if I’ve progressed so much. A goalkeeper’s game is very much about routine and about playing lots of matches. I have been doing this for a number of years and it has borne fruit.“I am also surrounded by good teammates and good coaches with the national team and at my club, where my strengths are utilised.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Campus Insiders Projects College Football AP Top 25 Poll

first_imgNational Championship in Tampa Bay for 2017.Who will win enough games to compete for this?College football expert Phil Steele projected what the preseason AP top 10 will look like yesterday. You can see that here. Another outlet has done the same, but expanded to the complete top 25. Pete Fiutak of Campus Insiders and CollegeFootballNews.com has projected what the first AP poll of the 2016 college football season will look like. Who will enter next season No.1 in the AP [email protected]‘s Post-Spring Projected Top 25: https://t.co/WnfJg75exo pic.twitter.com/fwIPBXDnLD— Campus Insiders (@CampusInsiders) May 11, 2016Here’s his projected top 25:1. Clemson  2. Alabama  3. Michigan  4. Florida State  5. Oklahoma  6. Ohio State  7. LSU  8. Notre Dame  9. Tennessee  10. Georgia  11. Michigan State  12. Baylor  13. Oregon  14. Houston  15. Florida  16. USC  17. TCU  18. Wisconsin  19. Oklahoma State  20. Stanford  21. Iowa  22. Ole Miss  23. Louisville  24. UCLA  25. Nebraska You can view his full explanation for the rankings here.last_img read more

Chelsea can still qualify for Champions League – Hazard

first_imgChelsea winger Eden Hazard has shared his hopes that the Blues can still end the season in the top four in the Premier League, but only if they won all of their remaining fixtures.Their extremely poor performance throughout the whole season has helped them to the fifth place in the Premier League standings, trailing after the Spurs with 10 points. However, considering the fact that they have six games prior to the end of the campaign, if they were to get all of the 18 points available, they would most likely take at least the fourth spot.“It is difficult, very difficult, but it is possible. In football anything can happen. So we need it believe, we need to trust in each other and try to win every game. That’s it,” Eden Hazard shared, according to SportsMole.Jose Mourinho is sold on Lampard succeeding at Chelsea Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 14, 2019 Jose Mourinho wanted to give his two cents on Frank Lampard’s odds as the new Chelsea FC manager, he thinks he will succeed.There really…“We have six games to play in the league, and if we win the six games but don’t finish in the top four, at least we did everything. So no regrets, let’s play one month.”“We know we are playing for Chelsea, when you are playing for Chelsea, you need to give everything to the end of the season, that’s it. If you achieve something, that’s good, but if not you will try for the next year,” Hazard went on to add.last_img read more

Marco Silva proud of Evertons display

first_imgEverton boss Marco Silva credited squad depth and inner resolve for his team’s late winner over Crystal PalaceThe Toffees broke the deadlock late in the game thanks to Dominic Calvert-Lewin who was introduced in the 82nd minute which was followed by another substitute Cenk Tosun in the 89th minute.The Eagles were made to rue their missed chance after missing from the spot.“Sometimes you make changes and everything goes well, like this afternoon,” Silva told Sky.Marco Silva hails Everton’s strong personality after Wolves win Andrew Smyth – September 1, 2019 Everton manager Marco Silva praised his team’s strong personality after scrapping a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Wolves on Sunday.“The other times you try and it’s not the same but in that moment it was important for us, we changed the formation with the substitutes and they did well.“They came on and helped the team and showed that everybody is ready to play and everybody is fighting for positions in the squad.“That is really important. It’s not just the 11 players but the squad and that’s what we want as a club.“I’m happy because the three players came on and they helped. Cenk, Lookman and Dominic are working really hard to achieve what they want, which is to play in our starting XI and this afternoon they helped the team.”last_img read more