Liverpool can handle title pressure – Barnes

first_imgLiverpool can “handle the pressure” of a Premier League title race, says John Barnes, with “the Jurgen Klopp factor” set to be key as they chase down a first crown in 29 years.The Reds remain in control of their own destiny as they seek to bring an end to a wait for top-flight glory which has spanned almost three decades.They currently hold a five-point lead at the summit, although Liverpool missed the chance to pull seven clear on Wednesday after playing out a 1-1 draw at home to Leicester. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? It has been suggested that a stalemate at Anfield, which came 24 hours after defending champions Manchester City suffered a shock 2-1 defeat at Newcastle, showed signs of nerves.However Barnes, who won two titles with Liverpool in his playing days, does not agree.He considers the result against the Foxes to be “a point gained” and expects many more twists and turns to be taken in over the coming weeks.The Reds legend told talkSPORT: “It’s not all doom and gloom.“It was great opportunity to go seven points clear, but we’ve added another point.“It’s only January and teams, including Liverpool and Manchester City, will drop more points. We’re not going to have another situation like last year where City went so far ahead of everybody else and didn’t drop points.“Liverpool drawing against a struggling Leicester team, City losing to a struggling Newcastle team – this happens in the Premier League.“So I’d rather see this as a point gained. Yes, it’s an opportunity lost to go seven clear, but we’re one point further ahead.”Barnes added on the demands of leading a title chase: “The pressure isn’t necessary going to show now, there’s still a long way to go.“The pressure really comes into focus around March.“But I think the Jurgen Klopp factor is very important – he really takes every game as it comes, the pressure is to perform in every game, he puts demands on those players to give 100 per cent every time. So I think they’re able to handle the pressure.”Liverpool, who have suffered just one defeat in 24 Premier League games this season, will be back in action on Monday when they travel to the London Stadium to take on West Ham. Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more

Mary Kom to make competitive 51 kg debut at India Open

first_imgMary Kom to make competitive 51 kg debut at India OpenMary Kom will make her competitive debut at India Open in the 51 kg category after opting out of the Asian Championships last month in order to prepare for the World Championships.advertisement Next Indo-Asian News Service New DelhiMay 13, 2019UPDATED: May 13, 2019 21:17 IST Six-time World Championships winner Mary Kom. (IANS photo)HIGHLIGHTSOlympic medallist Mary Kom will make her competitive debut in the 51 kg category at the India OpenAsian champion Shiva Thapa will also compete at the India OpenIndia Open starts in Guwahati, Assam from May 20-24With Olympic qualification round the corner, the second edition of the India Open Boxing Tournament kicks-off with 35 men and 37 women boxers from India vying for glory as close to 200 pugilists from 16 boxing powerhouses will participate in this tournament to be held at the Karmabir Nabin Chandra Bordoloi Indoor Stadium in Guwahati, Assam from May 20-24.The $70,000 tournament will see London Olympic bronze medallist Mary Kom making her competitive debut at home in the 51 kg category after opting out of the Asian Championships last month in order to prepare for the World Championships as the event will serve as a good preparatory ground for Olympic qualification.”The India Open is a great opportunity for the Indian boxers. In the run-up to their preparations for the World Championships, they will be facing some of the top boxers including Asian Games and World champions,” said Ajay Singh, President of the Boxing Federation of India (BFI).”BFI vision is to take boxing to every corner of the country. Staging the second edition of the India Open in Assam will be a step in that direction and a chance to bring world class boxers to the North-East region which has already contributed many Indian boxing success stories for India and will inspire the next generation to take up the sport in a much bigger way,” he added.Keeping in mind the approved weight categories for Olympic qualification, some of the Indian pugilists have changed their weight categories. After her stunning performance at the Asian Championships, where she became the first Indian to win a gold in the 81 kg category, Pooja Rani has gone back to her original weight category of 75 kg.advertisementAssam’s Bhagyabati Kachari too has made a similar change while Asian Championships bronze medallist Manisha Moun will be fighting it out in 57 kg for the very first time. Simranjit Kaur, a silver medallist at the continental tournament in 64 kg, has switched to 60 kg as well and will be competing with former world champion Sarita Devi, who added her eighth Asian medal this year.”I have been preparing well for 51 kg category. Having got a real hand idea of the competition in this class in Germany, I am ready to give my best at this tournament and test myself ahead of the World Championships,” said Mary Kom, who led six Indian boxers to gold in the last edition in New Delhi.”I am glad the event will be hosted in Assam this time. With the North-East being a powerhouse of talent, I hope this gives an opportunity to the youngsters to watch and get inspired by watching us live,” she added.While the six-time world champion will be India’s biggest medal hope yet again, Amit Panghal (52 kg) will be looking to continue his dominance after conquering the Asian Championships gold.Assam’s Shiva Thapa (60 kg), who created a record by winning medals in four consecutive Asian Championships, will be aiming to impress the home crowd and so will Ankushita Boro (64 kg), a gold medallist at the 2017 World Youth Championship.2017 World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Gaurav Bidhuri (56 kg) will be another of the big medal bets from India.The seven-day tournament will be held under the auspices of the Government of India, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports and the Sports Authority of India. The Assam government too has lent its full support to stage the event in Guwahati.In the upcoming edition, while the gold medallists will get richer by $2,500, the silver medallists will receive $1,000 for their exploits as the countdown for the tournament begins.Also Read | ATP Rankings: Novak Djokovic extends lead over Rafael Nadal after Madrid winAlso Read | World Cup 2019: Pakistan hate unpredictable tag, says coach Mickey ArthurAlso SeeFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byAnita Jat Tags :Follow Mary KomFollow boxing World ChampionshipsFollow Shiva ThapaFollow Asian Gameslast_img read more