Torres still one of the best – Benayoun

first_imgYossi Benayoun believes “the real Fernando Torres” will emerge once the misfiring Chelsea striker puts his recent dry run in front of goal behind him. Press Association He added: “You can understand it is not easy, from being the top striker at Liverpool – he was unbelievable, you gave him the ball and you knew he would score. “But he had a bad time in the beginning at Chelsea. When he came in, he was on the bench, then on the pitch. He did not get the confidence when he came in. And with the £50million above his head, it is not easy for any player.” Like Torres, Benayoun has struggled to reach the same heights since moving from Anfield to west London, and he added: “You do not change so quick from being the best player, one of the best in the world, to a player that some people say is not good enough for Chelsea. “He has had good spells, bad spells, and has 15 or 16 goals already. That is not bad, but hopefully he will finish with 25.” In three and a half years at Liverpool, after being signed from Atletico Madrid by Benitez for a fee of £20m, Torres scored 81 goals in 142 matches before moving to Stamford Bridge on the final day of the 2011 winter transfer window for £50m on a five-and-a-half-year deal. He has scored 25 goals in 134 appearances for Chelsea – 15 of them this term. Torres netted seven times in six games in December, but his only goal since was the equaliser which forced Sunday’s FA Cup fourth-round replay with Brentford. Benitez has praised Torres’ work-rate and attributed his barren streak to the role he has to perform as a lone striker, but the Spain international could be removed from the firing line for the Brentford encounter, with Demba Ba and Victor Moses available. center_img Torres has one goal in 13 matches after Thursday night’s Europa League last-32 first-leg 1-0 win at Sparta Prague. While many Chelsea supporters have lost faith in Torres, Benayoun, like interim manager Rafael Benitez, has backed his former Liverpool colleague. He said: “For me, he is still one of the best strikers in the world. He just needs to believe in himself. It would be good to get his confidence back and be his old self. Hopefully he will get a few more soon and you will see the real Fernando Torres.” last_img read more

Blues miss chance to go top

first_img A draw between Sunderland and West Brom – two and three points above the Canaries, respectively – on Wednesday would all but seal the Norfolk side’s fate as they have such an inferior goal difference that a win at home to Arsenal next Sunday would be immaterial. Just like for Chelsea, Norwich’s lack of firepower appears to have been their undoing. The Canaries have scored just 28 goals all season – 11 of them away from home – and were denied the chance of a 29th from the penalty spot when Martin Olsson was fouled in the area by John Terry. Andre Schurrle hit the post for Chelsea in a poor first half of a game enlivened when David Luiz was introduced at half-time alongside Eden Hazard. Luiz struck the bar soon three minutes after his introduction before the Belgium playmaker thought he had been fouled for a penalty. Ryan Bennett swiped wildly at Hazard in the area, making minimal contact but enough to put off the Chelsea forward and to give the Blues reason to feel aggrieved. There was little to celebrate as the Chelsea players lapped the field at the end of their final home game of the season, with some likely to have played their final matches at Stamford Bridge. The futures of captain Terry, Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole are still to be clarified as they enter the final weeks of their current contracts, with Mourinho often outlining his desire to keep the trio. At the end of a week which began with a win at Liverpool which resurrected their title hopes, and then saw the Blues eliminated from the Champions League, Jose Mourinho’s men once again demonstrated their lack of cutting edge. The goalless draw left Chelsea, who visit already relegated Cardiff next weekend, one point behind leaders Manchester City and second-placed Liverpool, who have two games in hand, while Norwich’s relegation could be completed on Wednesday. A blunt performance against 18th-placed Norwich saw Chelsea miss the chance to return to the top of the Barclays Premier League ahead of the concluding week of the season. Press Association Others are certain to leave, but Hazard is unlikely to be among them despite feeling the wrath of Mourinho this week. Hazard collected the Blues supporters’ player of the year award on the pitch before kick-off, wearing a tracksuit after dropping to the bench as one of five changes following the midweek loss to Atletico Madrid. The Belgium forward, who has been continually linked with Paris St Germain, was criticised by Mourinho in the wake of the Blues’ elimination as “not the kind of player to sacrifice himself for the team”. His place went to Schurrle, who shot straight at John Ruddy after Michael Turner gifted the German the ball. Turner then stood his ground to bodycheck Demba Ba as the striker surged into the box. Norwich might have had a penalty in the 11th minute when Bradley Johnson fed Olsson, with Cole and Terry each diving in. The Blues captain clattered Olsson, but referee Neil Swarbrick dismissed appeals. Shorn of the beard he sported in recent weeks, Cole showed more attacking zip and saw one cross towards Ba intercepted by Ruddy. But Chelsea lacked the incisiveness of Cole’s razor, giving Norwich hope. Terry headed straight at Ruddy from a corner by Schurrle, who then hit the post after Nemanja Matic dispossessed Robert Snodgrass and brilliantly found his team-mate down the left. Schurrle cut in on to his favoured right foot and beat Ruddy with his shot across goal, but the ball bounced back off the foot of the upright and Norwich scrambled clear. Lampard was replaced at half-time along with the equally ineffective Mohamed Salah and their replacements fashioned a chance for Chelsea. Hazard dazzled in the corner, fed Branislav Ivanovic, who in turn found Luiz to strike a rasping first-time effort against the bar. Chelsea had a penalty appeal waved away when Alexander Tettey lunged at Schurrle inside the box, and another when Hazard ran into Bennett, who did not make contact with the man or ball, which went to Terry in an offside position. Ivanovic was booked for his protests and Mourinho made a brief exit down the tunnel before returning to tell fourth official Michael Oliver his opinion. The Portuguese has long advocated television replays and was perhaps making use of a screen. Nathan Redmond was introduced by Neil Adams and surged at Chelsea’s defence, freeing Snodgrass whose shot was blocked by Gary Cahill. The chance roused Norwich and Chelsea, who threw on Fernando Torres for Matic in a bid to find a winner. Hazard was denied by Ruddy and Norwich found space as Chelsea pushed forwards, but all too often crucial passes went awry. Bennett’s last-ditch tackle denied Torres in stoppage time as Chelsea failed to find a late winner. last_img read more

Cricket News Suresh Raina admits second knee surgery was a tough call to make

first_imghighlights Suresh Raina has not played for India since 2018 in England.Suresh Raina was not picked in the 2019 World Cup squad.Suresh Raina’s first knee surgery took place in 2007. New Delhi: Suresh Raina, who has not been part of the Indian cricket team ever since 2018, underwent a second knee surgery a couple of days ago. On the official Twitter account of the BCCI, a statement read, “Suresh Raina underwent a knee surgery where he had been facing discomfort for the last few months. The surgery has been successful and it will require him 4-6 week of rehab for recovery. We wish him a speedy recovery,” the statement read. The surgery is expected to keep the left-hander out of action for most of the 2019/20 domestic season but Raina said it was a tough call to make.”To be honest, a second knee surgery was a tough call to make because I knew it would put me off-action for a few months and I wasn’t ready for it until a few weeks ago when the pain had gotten a bit much and I knew there was only one way out of this. I hope I’m up on my feet, on the field and ready to give my best very soon again,” Raina wrote on his social media handle.Raina, who became the first Indian player to hit a century in all three formats, has not played for the Indian cricket team since the 2018 ODI in Leeds against England and he was not part of the Indian cricket team which was selected for the World Cup. The left-hander had played a pivotal role in India’s title triumph in 2011 and revealed the reason why he wanted to go under the knife.”The issue began way back. It was 2007 when I underwent my maiden knee surgery and later, I was back on the field, giving the game my 100%, all thanks to my trainers and doctors. However, a nagging discomfort returned last couple of years. During the episodes of niggling pain, to avoid any impact on my game, my trainers kept me going and helped me a lot in training my muscles well so that it would take the load off of the knee. I am out of surgery and healing steadily, for which I thank my doctors, family, friends, and everyone who has wished me good health & speedy recovery,” Raina said. center_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

Anunah Emerges Winner at Special Jami-Jami Golf Tourney

first_imgPeace Anunah played a net score of 69 to emerge the winner at the Special Jami-Jami golf tournament held at the Benin club golf section (BCGS), GRA, Benin City on Thursday.Over 80 golfers from UBTH, Ibori Golf and Country Club, Asaba and Shell club, Warri, participated in the tournament organised by the Jami Jami Kitty Group to honour and celebrate the return of Chief Sam Iredia, Epa of Jami Jami Worldwide, whose leadership impartation and quality were attested to by club members with lots of encomiums being showered on him.The exemplary two-under-par performance by Anunah, lifted him above the duo of Monday Ikhureigbe 70 net and Wilco Otabor 74 net to place them second and third respectively in the tournament whereby Osaze Iyare, 74 gross won the best gross award. In his admonition, Anunah expressed happiness to have won the tournament organised for Chief Iredia, former president of Benin Club, while he expressed fulfillment to have beaten all other contenders in respective of their ages.Similarly, BCGS Captain, Osagie Nehikhare and Iredia, as well as Comrade Philip Shaibu, deputy governor of Edo State used the occasion to thank all members of the Kitty Group and the club generally for playing in such a wonderful tournament organised within a short period and graced by golfers across the South-south zone.Other winners are Nkiru Awiaka 76 net in the ladies category. General S. Asemota 76 net in the veteran men cadre; Percy Okojie 71 net won the guests men, as H. Osawe 36 net won the super veteran men. Longest drive hole one winners are Suwadetu Mahmud, O. Henry, Ben Oghumah and Ikay Afe. While the nearest the pin hole two winners include Sandra Emina, Monday Oriakhi and Soji Benson.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Chris McCullough to reportedly return for sophomore season

first_img Published on March 4, 2015 at 5:08 pm Contact Matt: | @matt_schneidman Forward Chris McCullough will return to Syracuse for his sophomore season, reported on Wednesday afternoon.Earlier in the Orange’s season, McCullough had been projected as a first-round pick in the NBA Draft. He tore his right ACL on Jan. 11 against Florida State in the Carrier Dome and was ruled out for the rest of the season. He underwent surgery on Feb. 12.“In my opinion, he made a wise decision to return to Syracuse,” said Jason Smith, McCullough’s former coach at Brewster Academy, in a text.When he does return, McCullough will join what will likely be a crowded Syracuse frontcourt. Tyler Roberson and DaJuan Coleman are expected to return and contribute, and incoming big men Moustapha Diagne and Tyler Lydon could be in the mix as well.In 16 games played this year, McCullough averaged 9.3 points and 6.9 rebounds in just over 28 minutes. The Orange is 18-12 and heading into its last game of the season at North Carolina State. On Wednesday, SU head coach Jim Boeheim emphasized how different the season may have been if Syracuse had McCullough, calling his injury a “devastating loss.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“By the summertime, I’ll be able to run,” McCullough told “I won’t be able to play until probably late October, November. But in a game, I probably won’t play a game until December. I don’t want to rush it.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Barkley stands out for more than just records

first_img“Goal Line Stands” runs Mondays. If you would like to comment on this story, visit or email Michael at As senior quarterback Matt Barkley ran into the locker room after a 50-6 rout against Colorado, he was all smiles. And why wouldn’t he be? He had the game of his life and set records that should stand for years.Historic mark · Senior quarterback Matt Barkley set the Pac-12 record for most career touchdown passes against Colorado on Saturday. – Carlo Acenas | Daily TrojanBarkley threw his 100th career touchdown pass, making him the school’s all time leader, and the Pac-12 leader as well, surpassing former Trojan signal caller Matt Leinart. He went 19-20 on the day, giving him the highest completion percentage in conference history as well with a 95-percent clip. His efficiency rating was a staggering 319.16, the best in conference history by nearly 15 points. Oh, and he threw six touchdown passes, tying his own mark for the most in USC single-game history.Yes, Saturday was about Barkley and his fellow star, junior wide receiver Robert Woods, who set the school record for receptions with his 217th. But in the grand scheme of things, it was all about Barkley. The four-year starter sits at 102 touchdown passes currently, and is one of only 15 quarterbacks in Football Bowl Subdivision  history to throw 100 or more touchdowns. Barkley is going to leave USC as the leader in pretty much every statistical quarterbacking category. His name will be all over the record books, and he’ll go down as the best signal caller in school history.Beyond the numbers themselves, however, Saturday was about Barkley’s legacy and what he has meant to the USC program. I don’t know if a record such as the one he set yesterday for career touchdown passes will ever be equaled by another quarterback who graces the conference, but I do know this: No other player will throw a more meaningful 100 touchdowns than Barkley has.Coming out of Mater Dei high school in Santa Ana, Calif., Barkley was destined to be a star. He was the top quarterback in his recruiting class and was on everyone’s All-American list. He came to USC, seized the quarterback job and got off to a fast start. His first career touchdown came in his first career game against San Jose State back in 2009, when the future was bright for the Trojans, who had just come off a Rose Bowl victory against Penn State in January. Pete Carroll was still at the helm, and USC was ranked in the top 10. He finished with 15 touchdown passes and was named a freshman All-American. The future was bright indeed.Then, disaster struck. The NCAA sanctioned the Trojans, Carroll left to coach the Seattle Seahawks and players were free to leave the program without having to sit out a season. Ultimately, Barkley decided to stay and weather the two-season bowl ban. The Trojans trudged through a tough first season under new head coach Lane Kiffin and finished 8-5, their worst record since 2001. Barkley threw 26 more touchdowns, but questions still remained as to whether he was the answer to USC’s current problems.For Barkley, 2011 was his defining year. Ineligible once again for the postseason, Barkley and the Trojans lost an early game at Arizona State and then lost a triple-overtime heartbreaker to the Andrew Luck-led Stanford Cardinal.But it was after that when the legend of Matt Barkley formed.He led USC to wins in the rest of its games, including an on-the-road upset over then-No. 4 ranked Oregon. He defeated UCLA 50-0 and finished sixth place in the Heisman Trophy voting. He was a third-team All-American and set a conference record for single-season touchdowns with 39. Expected to be a top-five pick in the 2012 NFL draft, people presumed that Barkley’s collegiate career was over. He would finish with 80 career touchdown passes — a solid number, but not enough to break records. He would be a three-year starter who won games but didn’t lead the Trojans to the promised land.During December 2011, Barkley held a press conference to announce his intention to leave USC, once again leaving the Trojans in disarray.Except he didn’t announce his intent to leave. He instead said he had “unfinished business.” That was when Barkley ‘s legend solidified.The school record for touchdown passes was clearly within reach, seeing as he was only 19 away from tying Leinart when the season started. The fact that he was going to break the record is unimportant; it’s the way in which he did it.If Barkley had left USC for the NFL, not only would he not have set the records he set Saturday, but USC would have been in disrepair. With all of the players coming back from a potent offense, the most important piece of a potential national title contender would be gone, leaving USC back at square one. But “Matty Trojan,” as Kiffin has affectionately called him, wanted to finish what he had started.So when Woods caught that touchdown in the second quarter to give Barkley number 100, it meant far more than just a record. It didn’t just mean he had more scoring tosses than conference legends like Leinart, Dan Fouts, John Elway, Jim Plunkett and Gary Beban. It meant he had stayed all four years at USC. It meant he hadn’t left when he could have gone elsewhere and competed for a postseason bowl berth. It meant he had refused a chance at the NFL for the chance to be the greatest USC player of all time.Most importantly, however, it meant through tough losses and sanctions, there was no other place he would rather be than at USC. Touchdown records are great, but the reason Barkley was here to break them is what matters. He did not give up and refused to quit on the school he loves, showing not only a desire to win but the true spirit of a Trojan.Barkley is likely to throw a lot more touchdowns this year, considering USC might play in seven more games. But his 100th scoring toss should be a moment to remember forever. That perfect spiral represented dedication, heart and everything good about college football. And who knows when we will ever see that again.last_img read more

Trojans are hoping to stay perfect on the season

first_imgThe USC baseball team is hoping to stay undefeated on the season tonight against the University of Kentucky Wildcats. The Trojans (4-0) built upon a three-game sweep last weekend against Towson University by beating No. 25 Cal State Fullerton on the road Tuesday night, 6-4.Junior outfielder David Oppenheim got the offense started against Fullerton with a solo home run in the second inning. However, senior catcher Garrett Stubbs paced the offense for the Trojans, going 2-for-5 with three RBI and a run scored.Freshman Mason Perryman threw four innings and gave up two runs on six hits while striking out two and walking two in his first career collegiate start.The Trojans used three relievers to finish off the game. Sophomore Bernardo Flores got the win after throwing three innings of two-run ball. Junior Marc Huberman struck out the side in a scoreless eighth inning and fellow junior Kyle Davis recorded his second save of the season after striking out two in a perfect ninth inning.Coming off their fourth- straight win, the Trojans will face the University of Kentucky Wildcats (2-0) tonight at Dedeaux Field. Junior pitcher Tyler Gilbert will make his second start of the season.USC head coach Dan Hubbs said he’s excited with the success his team has had so far, especially after going on the road to beat a talented Fullerton team. However, he stressed that the Trojans cannot get caught up in their recent success and must maintain focus throughout the entire season.“I think the biggest thing is we went into Fullerton and won,” Hubbs said. “It was a good test for our guys, the first road test at a good program and a great atmosphere, and we won a tough game. I’m excited about the 4-0 start but it doesn’t mean anything if we don’t keep winning.”The Trojans get their next chance to extend their four-game winning streak tonight, but they face a big challenge against a talented Kentucky team. The Wildcats qualified for the NCAA Regionals last season with a 37-25 overall record, marking the     sixth-most wins in Kentucky history.This season, the Wildcats have come out strong again with impressive 11-7 and 10-1 victories against Ball State University and the University of Richmond, respectively.However, successful programs such as Kentucky do not intimidate the Trojans, as Hubbs believes they approach every opponent the same way.“We’re playing the game — not the opponent,” Hubbs said. “If we play well, we know we’re going to be in every game, and that’s really the focus. I can’t worry about whether we’re playing Kentucky or Fullerton or whoever we’re playing. We just have to be the best team on the field that day.”The Trojans have benefitted from early success on both sides of the ball this season, pitching to a 2.50 ERA and hitting for a .307 average as a team through four games. However, the Wildcats have featured dominant            early-season pitching and hitting as well, batting .368 and limiting opponents to a 2.50 ERA as a team through two games.Senior second baseman Dante Flores says USC has to stick to playing fundamental baseball in order to beat Kentucky.“Our pitchers have to throw strikes and let our defense make plays behind them,” Flores said. “Our hitters have to move the runners, score the runner from third base and just do the little things. Play the little game of baseball I don’t think we should run into any problems [against Kentucky].”Coming off the big win against Fullerton and a strong season last spring, the Trojans view this season as an opportunity to prove themselves as an elite ball club. With strong playoff aspirations this season, Hubbs believes the team must capitalize on every opportunity in order to win.“We have to win those close games and we have to beat teams that we’re supposed to beat,” Hubbs said. “We can’t give any games away.”The confidence surrounding  the Trojans is palpable, and Flores sent out a warning to the rest of the conference that the Trojans are a force to be reckoned with.“I think we can win the [Pac-12] and be a contender for regionals, Flores said. “We feel like we’re going to contend this year and surprise a lot of people.last_img read more

Jamaica PM to attend G20 Summit 2018

first_imgPrime Minister Andrew Holness has been invited to attend the first ever G20 Summit in Argentina on November 30, according to a statement issued by the Office of the Prime Minister on Monday.It said that Holness, who had also been invited to attend the Special Oceans Summit in Oslo, Norway following his successful historic presentation at the outreach session of the just concluded G7 Summit in Charlevoix, Canada.The statement said that Holness was specially invited by Argentine President, Mauricio Macri and the Prime Minister of Norway, Erna Solberg.Power of inclusive, sustainable economic growthIn Canada, Holness spoke of the need to strengthen resilience through integrated adaptation planning, emergency preparedness and recovery, while promoting gender-responsive approachesHe told the G7 summit that there are no forces with greater capacity to transform the lives of millions, from poverty to prosperity, than the forces of inclusive and sustainable economic growth.Ravaging effects of climate change“Yet, Jamaica and the Caribbean have struggled with low levels of economic growth and high debt, made worse by the ravaging effects of climate change on our islands which are situated in the midst of great bodies of water.”Holness said that small island developing states (SIDS) like the countries of the Caribbean need to be empowered to take charge of their development and prosperity, through economic growth rather than debt, while being good stewards of our environment.“This will undoubtedly require enlightened thinking and partnerships, as already recognized by each and every country which has signed on to Agenda 2030.”Substantial progressHolness said that with the steadfast support of bilateral friends and multi-lateral partners, Jamaica and other Caribbean countries have made substantial progress in implementing painful, but necessary economic and structural reforms across political administrations, which have delivered previously elusive macro-economic stability.last_img read more

‘Iso Joe’ Johnson is crushing the Clippers

first_imgHe nailed a 3-pointer that widened the gap to 83-78 with 2:59 left to prompt Clippers coach Doc Rivers to call a timeout. Nearly 17 seconds after re-entering the game, Johnson nailed a fadeaway in the lane to give the Jazz a 92-87 lead with 19.2 seconds remaining. In the Clippers’ Game 4 loss, Johnson scored 13 of his game-high 28 points in the fourth quarter. In the Clippers’ Game 1 loss, Johnson made the game-winner over center DeAndre Jordan and forward Jamal Crawford as time expired.“We got to slow down Joe Johnson. He’s been killing us every game now,” Clippers guard Austin Rivers said. “He keeps making big shots after big shots. We’ll figure out something.”Clippers coach Doc Rivers argued somewhat that his team already had figured out something. After citing Johnson’s 6-of-14 mark from the field, Doc Rivers argued,” I would take that.” He then argued that Utah guard Gordon Hayward “set the tone” with his team-leading 27 points on 9-of-16 shooting.About 90 minutes before tip-off, though, Doc Rivers offered a different diagnosis. After stressing the need to make Johnson “miss shots,” the veteran coach also outlined the importance of denying him his sweet spots and downplayed the ones he made that were contested.“If this were the regular season, you would keep saying if he’s going to keep making those shots, then we’re going to keep playing that way,” Rivers said. “But in the playoffs, you make adjustments. We will.” The Clippers did not adjust enough in Game 5. Will they in Game 6? Perhaps easier said than done considering Johnson’s 6-foot-7, 240-pound frame.“He’s a guard, but he’s a bigger-size guard if that makes sense,” Crawford said. “Not to compare him to LeBron (James), but in that sense, he’s a bigger wing player. When you double-team, he can make the right reads. When you don’t, he has a size advantage against anybody.”As a result, Johnson also tallied eight rebounds and three assists, shedding the misconception that he is simply a proficient scorer.“We have confidence in him with the ball,” Snyder said. “Part of it’s because he’s a playmaker. He’s able to create shots for himself, but he also does things for other people.”Johnson has also done plenty to give the Clippers’ headaches, leaving them searching for solutions to make those migraines go away. LOS ANGELES — The end result seemed inevitable anytime Utah guard Joe Johnson had the ball in his hands. Even as the Clippers sensed what he would do, there were very few times when they stopped it.Having earned the nickname “Iso Joe” during his 15-year NBA career, the 35-year-old Johnson has shown in this first-round series against the Clippers that his production is hardly an isolated incident. Johnson scored 14 points in Utah’s 96-92 Game 5 victory over the Clippers on Tuesday night at Staples Center, but that doesn’t properly explain his value.“His baskets, because of the timeliness of them, really lift the group,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. “He’s so willing and wanting to take those big shots.”Johnson hit plenty.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more