Manchester City worry about key trio ahead of Champions League clash

first_img Last season’s runners-up got the campaign off to an exceptional start but have begun to stutter recently, losing three of their last four matches in all competitions. A 2-1 home defeat to Juventus in their Group D opener heightens the importance of winning on Wednesday, although they will be without a string of key players in Germany. David Silva, Eliaquim Mangala and Fabian Delph all missed Saturday’s 4-1 loss at Tottenham, as did Wilfried Bony, Gael Clichy and Kelechi Iheanacho. Things got worse at White Hart Lane as Toure came off with a hamstring complaint and an ongoing calf issue saw captain Kompany withdraw from the squad before kick-off. Hart was reduced a role on the bench due to a back problem, adding to City’s problems ahead of the trip to Monchengladbach. “Joe had a problem with his back during the week,” City boss Pellegrini said. “He could train just one day this week, that’s why I decided to play (Willy) Caballero. Joe was not 100 per cent. “Yaya had some problem with his hamstring. “We don’t know (if they will be fit). We must wait for Sunday or Monday to decide if they are 100 per cent.” The prognosis on centre-back Kompany seems more clear-cut, though. Press Association Vincent Kompany, Joe Hart and Yaya Toure are doubts to face Borussia Monchengladbach, giving Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini a Champions League injury headache. “I don’t think (he will be available on Wednesday),” Pellegrini said. “At the beginning he was fit to be on the bench. “In the warm-up, he felt also some problem in his calf. We will see in the way he developed the next few days.” City struggled without Kompany, Toure and Hart as Kevin de Bruyne’s first half goal was wiped out at White Hart Lane. Eric Dier, Toby Alderweireld, Harry Kane and Erik Lamela netted as Pellegrini’s men suffered a 4-1 defeat, but the City boss dismissed suggestions he side lacked leaders. “No, I never complain about players that cannot play,” he said. “I think this team played very well in first 45 minutes and maybe deserved a better score. “After that, two set pieces and that’s not about leaders. It is about marking, concentration. That decided the game.” While City look to right some wrongs in Germany, Spurs will try to kick on against Monaco this Thursday – a Europa League tie in which goalscorer Dier hopes they can get another big result. “It was a great result,” the defensive midfielder told Spurs TV. “Everyone is really happy. “I think it has been a long time coming, really, that we get a big result like this. “We’ve been working very hard and the last couple of results – minus the Arsenal one – have been good, so everyone is really happy.” last_img read more

AFRICAN FRIENDLIES: Aubemayang brace saves Gabon from Mali as Bafana stroll

first_imgGabon striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang struck twice to inspire the Panthers to a 4-3 win over Mali in a thrilling friendly international on Wednesday night in the northern French city of Beauvais.The Malians were first off the blocks after SC Bastia defender Drissa Diakite struck in the sixth minute of play. Wydad Casablanca striker Malick Evouna leveled proceedings in the 36th minute, ensuring both sides entered the break with a goal apiece.Udinese defender Molla Wague, who scored for his club at the weekend, restored Mali’s lead in the 57th minute, but a quick-fire brace from Aubameyang turned the tables in Gabon’s favour.AFCON star Bakary Sako looked to have done enough for a share of the spoils when he pulled Mali level eight minutes from time, but Bordeaux defender Bruno Ecuele Manga snatched the win in the final moments.The Panthers will now face Belarus on March 30, while Mali hope for better fortunes against Ghana on March 31 in Paris.Bafana 3-1 Swaziland South Africa bounced back from their disappointing Africa Cup of Nations campaign with a 1-3 victory over Swaziland in an international friendly in Mbabane.Critically the game marked the return of former Bafana Bafana number one goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune for the first time since injury cost him his place over a year ago.Five players, including goal scorer Thabo Mnyamane made their Bafana bow. Others were Siphelele Ntshangase, Thapelo Morena, Daniel Cardoso and Cole Alexander.It was business as usual for the South Africans as the win maintained their dominance over their neighbours, stretching the head-to-head record to five straight wins.South Africa will now turn their attention to Nigeria (after the Eagles lost on Wednesday) who they host on Sunday at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit. OTHER RESULTSNigeria 0-1 UgandaSwaziland 1-3 South AfricaBotswana 2-0 LesothoIndonesia 0-1 Cameroon –last_img read more

Presidents Weah, Xi Jinping to Strengthen Bilateral Ties

first_imgPres. Weah greets Chinese President, Xi Jinping in BeijingSign US$54M grant to construct overpasses at SKD Boulevard, Ministerial ComplexA September 1, 2018 dispatch from Beijing China where President George Weah is currently attending the 2018 Beijing Summit on China-Africa Cooperation says President Weah and Chinese President Xi Jinping have signed two cooperation agreements totaling US$54 million (320 million RMB) for the construction of two overpasses at SKD Boulevard and the Ministerial Complex, while the other is the provision of emergency food aid. The agreements were signed at the Great Hall of the People’s Republic of ChinaAccording to the dispatch, President Weah reiterated Liberia’s firm adherence to the one-China policy and expressed heartfelt gratitude for China’s valuable support, especially the selfless help to Liberia in her fight against the Ebola epidemic in 2014 and 2015 respectively.President Weah said that the mutually beneficial cooperation between China and Liberia has brought perceptible benefits to the Liberian people. “Liberia supports and is willing to take part in China’s Belt and Road Initiative,” he said.He furthered that Liberia supports China’s hosting the Beijing Summit of the Forum of China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), and is willing to make whatever contribution that would enhance friendship between the two countries and peoples.In his welcoming statement to President Weah and delegation to the People’s Republic of China, Chinese President Xi Jinping said that the friendship between China and Liberia continues to serve the fundamental interests of both countries and people.President Xi reflected on China’s support to Liberia’s peace process, and promised to continue to stand up and support the country in multilateral institutions.He highlighted the Liberian government’s firm position on the One-China Policy, and said his government is willing to increase exchanges at all levels, emphasizing that the two countries should continue to show mutual understanding and support each other on issues involving their respective core interests and major concerns.The Chinese President promised to strengthen bilateral cooperation across various fields, especially those outlined in the Liberian government’s National Development Agenda, focusing on infrastructure development, poverty-reduction, health, agriculture, and education.President Xi then expressed the hope that as a former world football star, deeply admired by his compatriots, President Weah would use his special influence to promote sport and youth exchanges between China and Liberia. FOCAC’s Briefs[Objectives] Equal consultation, enhancing understanding, expanding consensus, strengthening friendship and promoting cooperation.[Consultation Mechanism] As prescribed in the Program for China-Africa Cooperation in Economic and Social Development, adopted at the 2000 Ministerial Conference of FOCAC, China and Africa agreed to set up joint follow-up mechanisms to conduct regular evaluations on the implementation of the follow-up actions.In July 2001, a FOCAC ministerial consultation meeting was held in Lusaka, capital of Zambia, at which the Procedures for Follow-up Mechanisms of FOCAC were deliberated and adopted. The follow-up mechanisms officially took effect in April 2002. The FOCAC follow-up mechanisms are built at the Ministerial Conference, which is held every three years; the Senior Officials Follow-up Meeting and the Senior Officials Preparatory Meeting for the Ministerial Conference are held respectively in the year and a few days before the Ministerial Conference is held; and the consultations between the African Diplomatic Corps in China and the Secretariat of the Chinese Follow-up Committee are held at least twice a year.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Man wins trip in Copa Airlines, Banks DIH Christmas promotion

first_imgCompton Delon Aaron already knows this Christmas will be one of the best ever because he has had an enormous slice of good fortune, and it all came about because he decided to make a prudent purchase.Aaron would have taken advantage of a special offer by Banks DIH to buy two six-packs of Malta Supreme and get a free T-shirt as well as a chance in the Cop-A-Supreme free trip promotion draw.As such, he became the first winner of the promotion—an initiative of Copa Airlines and Banks DIH. He received an award letter to that effect on December 5 in the presence of airline staff members and Banks DIH Brand Manager of Non-Alcoholic Malts, Clayton McKenzie.He now has the incredible opportunity to choose from 80 Copa AirlinesWinner of the first Cop-A-Supreme promotion draw, Compton Delon Aaron (right) poses with Banks DIH Brand Manager of Non-Alcoholic Malts, Clayton McKenzie and Copa Airlines Sales Manager Nadine Oudkerkdestinations to enjoy his prize with someone special.Aaron is ecstatic. “It’s … unbelievable for you to have won a competition that you can select from more than 70 destinations. So with Copa Airlines and Banks Supreme Malta, you can fulfil your dreams. So you can’t go wrong supporting Copa Airlines or Banks Malta.”He applauded Copa Airlines and Banks DIH for rewarding their customers with such generosity and believed they should continue to give something back, for their customers’ support.Aaron won the first of three such drawings in December, and the companies have announced that the closing date for the competition has been shifted from December 8 to December 22. This means the second drawing will be done on December 15 and the final one on December 22.Persons who wish to qualify can buy two Malta Supreme six-packs. The purchase entitles the buyer to a free T-shirt and an entry form which can be deposited into the boxes at Banks DIH Retail Liquor Store, Caesar’s Palace and Banks DIH Cash and Carry centres at Bartica, Berbice, Linden, and Essequibo. Then, it’s all up to the luck of the draw.Speaking at the presentation ceremony where Aaron got his prize, Copa Airlines Sales Manager Nadine Oudkerk said the airline’s management was delighted to be part of a promotion that gives persons a chance to fulfil travel dreams.“We will continue to reward our customers in big ways. We wish Mr Aaron a memorable vacation and are truly pleased to be part of a dream come true,” she said.last_img read more

Pune Supergiant slay Kings XI Punjab to enter IPL Play-offs

first_imgIPL 2017 SHARE Rising Pune Supergiant cruised into the Indian Premier League play-offs with a throughly one-sided nine-wicket victory over Kings XI Punjab in a do-or-die final group league match, here today.It was complete domination by the home team, which first skittled out Kings XI Punjab for a paltry 73 and then knocked off the runs in only 12 overs to finish second in the eight- team table with 18 points.Young Rahul Tripathi blasted 28 off 20 balls to make a mockery of the chase in an encounter which turned out to be an anti-climax of sorts.It was the ninth time in 10 seasons of the IPL that a team involving Mahendra Singh Dhoni made it to the final four stage.In the first eight seasons with the Chennai Super Kings, Dhoni was a part of the last four on all occasions.The only other player to achieve this feat in 10 seasons is Suresh Raina (CSK and Gujarat Lions).It was only last season that a team involving the former India skipper couldn’t make it to the last four.The victory also gives Supergiant, the cushion of two shots at a place in the final.They will be playing Mumbai Indians in Qualifier 1 while Sunrisers Hyderabad (3rd with 17 points) will meet Kolkata Knight Riders (4th with 16 points) in the ‘Eliminator’.The match as a contest was over by the time Kings XI Punjab skipper Glenn Maxwell (0) got out with the scoreboard reading 32 for five.The chase was a mere formality with Tripathi blasting the three Sharmas —— Mohit, Ishant and Sandeep —— for four boundaries before hitting a six over deep mid-wicket off Rahul Tewatia.The run-rate pressure was non-existent which made it easier for Ajinkya Rahane (34 not out) and skipper Steve Smith (15 not out) to knock off the runs after Tripathi got out.Rahane finished the match with a six off Maxwell.Put into bat, Kings XI Punjab put up their worst batting performance of the season when it mattered the most.After the high of scoring 230 against Mumbai Indians in the last game, their campaign hit the worst note as it became a virtual no-show.They were all but out of the game after being shot out in only 15.5 overs. Axar Patel was the top-scorer with 22 runs while Wriddhiman Saha’s 13 was the next best.Shardul Thakur (3/19 in 4 overs) was the pick of the bowlers and he got fantastic support from Jaydev Unadkat (2/12 in 3 overs), Adam Zampa (2/22 in 3.5 overs) and Dan Cristian (2/10 in 2 overs).Even Ben Stokes (0/10 in 3 overs) looked dangerous as he beat the bat a number of times.Martin Guptill (0) uppishly drove to Manoj Tiwary at short cover off the very first delivery from Unadkat.Shaun Marsh (13) hit a couple of boundaries before he failed to clear Steve Smith at mid-off. He didn’t fully commit to the drive and failed to get the elevation.Unadkat was again in the game when his direct throw found Eoin Morgan (4) short of his crease.Rahul Tewatia (4) hit a square drive and then mistimed a pull from Shardul Thakur. Tewatia, to his horror, found Unadkat stationed at short fine leg. Unadkat dived full stretch to take the catch.Within a couple of deliveries, Glenn Maxwell flicked straight to Ajinkya Rahane at the deep square leg boundary.At 32 for 5, it was all over for the Kings XI as none of the batsmen showed any stomach for a fight.Wriddhiman had opened the batting and from the other end, saw wickets falling like ninepins. Finally, he was out trying to steer Cristian with Dhoni taking a regulation catch.It was a formality as Zampa polished off the tail with 25 deliveries remaining unconsumed. cricket COMMENTS × Published oncenter_img COMMENT SHARE SHARE EMAIL May 14, 2017 Rising Pune Supergiants bowler Jaydev Unadkat celebrates the wicket of Kings XI Punjab batsman Martin Guptill during the IPL match in Pune on Sunday. – PTI Rising Pune Supergiants bowler Jaydev Unadkat celebrates the wicket of Kings XI Punjab batsman Martin Guptill during the IPL match in Pune on Sunday. – PTIlast_img read more