Played six, won six. If Carlsberg did west London football…

first_imgIf Carlsberg did west London football weeks, they couldn’t have scripted the last seven days any better.The record of the area’s four top teams in that period reads played six, won six, scored 14.Chelsea might have qualified for a Champions League semi-final showdown with Barcelona in the process, but it’s Brentford who are the real Bees’ knees, having won four on the bounce – including impressive away victories at Preston and MK Dons.Uwe Rosler’s side are still five points adrift of the play-offs but if the Easter bunny is kind to them over the next few days, anything is possible.“There was typically not an Arsenal shirt in sight when we got home on Saturday.”‘Brickie chap’ on the Griffin Park Grapevine forum was forced to miss the latest triumph over Oldham to attend his mate’s 60th in a pub, but was cannily keeping up to date with proceedings via his phone.He wrote: “I nearly gave the fella a heart attack as I jumped up and shouted out ‘Get in there!’ when we went one up. The rest of the boozer sat there looking confused as they watched the Barca game!”Meanwhile ‘Bee4ever’ was laughing at “a number of middle-aged men sitting in the paddock, intermittently bursting into solo songs with no one else joining in”.I started to smile too, until I got the horrible feeling that when he said ‘middle-aged’ they were probably younger than me.Fulham moved into 10th place in the Premier League with a 2-1 win over Norwich, but their fans are more concerned with the Easter Monday showdown against Chelsea at Craven Cottage.Fulham are unbeaten in Premier League West London derbies this season after getting a draw at the Bridge, together with a 7-0 aggregate win over QPR (I wrote that through gritted teeth).A poster on the Cottage Corner messageboard confidently predicted “We can beat Chelsea on Monday.”Rosler’s Bees are flying.When another user asked how, he replied: “Score more goals than them.”How Aston Villa and Benfica must wish they’d adopted that brilliant tactical plan over these past few days.Villa were humbled 4-2 at home by the Blues while Benfica lost 2-1 in a crazy game in SW6 which could have finished 7-7.Not for the first time in this season’s Champions League, Chelsea didn’t make it easy for themselves, repelling wave after wave of attacks before Frank Lampard steadied the nerves with a trademark penalty.But when Benfica pulled one back after Ramires had somehow managed to step over the ball a yard out at the other end, Stamford Bridge turned into a quivering mass, before Raul Meireles’ late strike finally put things to bed.To qualify for the Champions League next season, Chelsea would need to overturn a five-point gap in the league, which is pretty big at this stage of the season.Or they can beat Barcelona over two legs before seeing off Real Madrid or Bayern Munich to lift the trophy and qualify automatically.Suddenly that five-point gap doesn’t look quite as big after all.Lampard’s penalty proved vital.The last time Barca were in west London they did a spot of training at QPR’s ground ahead of a trip to Arsenal – which brings us nicely to events at Loftus Road on Saturday.Adel Taarabt made it 69th time lucky by finally breaking his duck for the season with a brilliant goal, before grabbing a crafty smoke with Marouane Chamakh in a shisha café.Mark Hughes gave him a mild rebuke but when all’s said and done it’s only fruit tobacco and Adel would argue he was simply having one of his five a day.I’ve got nothing against the Gunners – my Nan and Grandad were Highbury season-ticket holders, and my mum veers between Arsenal and Spurs (despite being born in Hammersmith), while loads of my mates are Gooners, together with most of the north London street where I live in exile.Which made that little 2-1 victory last weekend all the sweeter.Year after year I’ve headed to Finsbury Park Station en route to Loftus Road and walked past the pub where the Arsenal fans are gathered to be met with polite/patronising enquiries: “Who have you got today?” ”What league are you in these days?” “How come you don’t support a proper team?”There was typically not an Arsenal shirt in sight when we got home on Saturday.I was particularly pleased my little girl was there to witness the victory, particularly after briefing her beforehand to expect the worst.Most of her class are Arsenal ‘fans’ (even though they’ve never been to see them play) and were laughing beforehand about how many they were going to stick past little old QPR…well they’re not laughing now.The only thing she does not quite get is the embarrassing dad routine that accompanies the goals, as adults revert to childhood, while their offspring tell them to calm down.Taking this on board, the first thing I did when we got to our seats was to apologise to the fella next to me for planting a smacker on his cheek during the victory over Liverpool, assuring him it wouldn’t happen again.And then Samba Diakite went and ruined everything by scoring the winner.We’re now on first-name terms and he’s insisted that if it means we’re winning games I can carry on kissing for the rest of the season.Thank the Lord there’s only three games left.Follow Chris on Twitterlast_img read more

Unity at QPR unless ‘diabolical liberties’ are taken

first_imgHarry Redknapp says he will not isolate players at QPR unless they take “a diabolical liberty” with the new manager.Former boss Mark Hughes upset the likes of Joey Barton, Jay Bothroyd and Luke Young by having those outside his 25-man squad train at different times to the first team.But Redknapp says he will not be taking a similar approach during his time in charge.“There’s no-one coming in in the afternoons or anything like that. We’ll all be together,” said Redknapp.“Until someone takes a diabolical liberty with me they’re part of it – and it’d have to be diabolical because I don’t isolate people very often.”But Redknapp expects to put some noses out of joint in due course and insists he will not be afraid to upset some players.He said: “I’ve always said the players you pick love you and will think you’re great, and the ones you don’t pick can’t stand the sight of you. That’s football and it never changes.“I’ve not had to upset anyone yet. When I have to leave a few out and upset them, then I suppose we’ll see a change in some of their characters perhaps.“I don’t care about that. I’ve got to pick a team to win games. I’m not here to worry about upsetting people.”Click here for Monday’s QPR quiz 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 Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Notre Dame’s Malik Zaire Drops Cryptic Tweet About Upcoming QB Battle

first_imgMalik Zaire pictured in a kitchen.Notre Dame will have a quarterback competition this off-season between redshirt sophomore Malik Zaire and incumbent Everett Golson. Both players played well in the program’s Music City Bowl win over LSU, and each candidate brings a different skill set to the table. In order to play a high-profile position such as quarterback at Notre Dame, one needs to have an abundance of self-confidence. If his Twitter this morning is any indication, Zaire is very confident in his own abilities.Never apologize for being confident in yourself.— Malik Zaire (@LuckyLefty8) March 5, 2015If you think you should have my spot. Play me for it. -KD— Malik Zaire (@LuckyLefty8) March 5, 2015The second tweet is a quote from NBA superstar Kevin Durant in regards to criticism that he was unworthy of a starting spot in this year’s All-Star game after missing time due to injury. Zaire seems ready to bring it on the field, and he should be a formidable competitor for Golson at the very least.last_img read more

AP Poll Features Many Changes After Wild Week 5

first_imgThe AP poll shows rankings 2 through 4 for week 6. taylor decker urban meyerTwitter/@TDeck68Saturday’s action, which featured losses by four of the top eight teams in last week’s AP Poll, turned the college football world on its head. Ole Miss, which sat at No. 3 following a big win in Tuscaloosa two weeks ago, lost in The Swamp to Florida, while Notre Dame, UCLA, and Georgia all fell. As expected, Clemson and Alabama, who beat the Fighting Irish and Bulldogs respectively, are among the biggest climbers at the top of this week’s Top 25. Undefeated Ohio State remains atop the poll after a very close win against Indiana in Bloomington, but a number of teams are gaining some serious momentum this season.Here is the full AP Top 25:1. Ohio State2. TCU3. Baylor4. Michigan State5. Utah6. Clemson7. LSU8. Alabama9. Texas A&M10. Oklahoma11. Florida12. Florida State13. Northwestern14. Ole Miss15. Notre Dame 16. Stanford17. USC 18. Michigan19. Georgia20. UCLA21. Oklahoma State22. Iowa23. Cal24. Toledo25. Boise StateHere is last week’s AP Poll, and this week’s Coaches Poll, for comparison. How did the writers do this week?last_img read more

Steve Spurrier Named Ambassador, Consultant For Florida Athletics

first_imgSteve Spurrier seen on College GameDayTwitter/@PickSixPreviewsWhen Steve Spurrier resigned as South Carolina’s head coach midseason last year, there were many who believed that at some point, in some form, he’d head back to his alma mater – Florida – to finish up his career. It turns out they were right.Steve Spurrier will serve as an ambassador and consultant for Florida athletics, per UF release.— David Ubben (@davidubben) July 29, 2016Spurrier, who played quarterback for the Gators from 1963-1966, won a Heisman Trophy and later coached the program for 12 seasons, is headed back to Gainesville. Florida has announced that Spurrier will be an Ambassador and a Consultant for the Florida athletic department. Here’s more from AD Jeremy Foley, via Florida’s official website:“It’s a great day for the Gator Nation to be able to welcome Coach Spurrier back home,” Foley said. “He has served as a tremendous ambassador to the University and the athletic department for 50-plus years and it’s only fitting that at this point in his career, he is back in Gainesville. Being a Gator has always meant so much to Coach Spurrier, but it means just as much to us have him come home.”Spurrier began his college head coaching career at Duke, posting a 20-13-1 record from 1987-1989. After coaching the Gators for 12 seasons, during which he won a national title, he tried his hand in the NFL, coaching the Washington Redskins for two seasons. He later returned to the college ranks in 2005, spending 11 years as the head coach of the South Carolina Gamecocks. Spurrier retired from coaching after six games this past season.Last month, Florida announced that it would be naming its football field in Spurrier’s honor.In 26 seasons as a collegiate head coach, Spurrier posted a 228-89-2 record with one national title – in 1996. His teams finished ranked in the top ten of the AP Poll 13 times.last_img read more

Federal NDP leader Singh to tie the knot in Brampton Mexico ceremonies

first_imgOTTAWA – Newly engaged federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh will tie the knot with a large wedding celebration close to home before travelling to Mexico for a more private ceremony and honeymoon.News of the plan, which a spokesman said has been in the works since the holidays, comes less than two weeks after Singh, 38, invited the media to watch his proposal to 27-year-old fashion designer Gurkiran Kaur at a downtown Toronto restaurant.The first wedding ceremony, known as a Kirtan in the Punjabi tradition, will be held on Feb. 4 in Brampton, Ont., and involve a large gathering of friends, family, neighbours and well-wishers.The couple will then travel to Mexico on Feb. 19 for a private ceremony before spending the rest of the week in the country on their honeymoon.The House of Commons does not sit the week that Singh and Kaur are gone.Singh had closely guarded details of his private life during last year’s NDP leadership campaign, but was quick to post videos on social media of the couple dancing and showing off the engagement ring after proposing to Kaur.That move raised eyebrows within his own caucus.“When a party believes that better Instagram tricks or gala planning is the path to success we lose touch,” Charlie Angus, who ran against Singh for the leadership, posted to his own social media account last weekend.Angus later deleted the tweet, and said this week that it wasn’t helpful.Singh has been dating Kaur for about a year, but the two have known each other since 2010.last_img read more

Dawson Creek and Fort St John programs receive Community Gaming Grants

first_imgDawson Creek’s Minor Hockey and the Swim Club will receive funds as well as their District Band Association, the Exhibition Association and the South Peace Art Society totalling grants of $492,100.Fort St. John’s North Peace Historical Society received a grant of $11,500.Eligible sectors that can apply for a grant include; art and culture, sports environment, public safety, human and social services, as well as parent advisory councils.For more information on applying for a grant click HERE VICTORIA, B.C. – Community based programs have received a boost of funding through the annual Community Gaming Grants.Dawson Creek and Fort St. John are both home to six of the 700 not for profit organizations around B.C. receiving part of approximately $18 million to support, community arts, culture and sports activities.A portion of revenue generated by commercial gambling revenues is distributed back into the community through the grant program, helping these community-based groups invest in facilities and assets that will provide a direct benefit to their community.last_img read more

AAP slams Ramesh Bidhuri for his abusive behaviour

first_imgNEW DELHI: AAP Delhi State Convenor Gopal Rai along with party’s South Delhi Lok Sabha Candidate Raghav Chadha presented Report Card of BJP’s sitting South Delhi MP Ramesh Bidhuri where the AAP slammed him for his “abusive” behaviour. “While no one, starting from Parliamentarians, party workers, constituents of South Delhi, etc has been spared his abrasive speech, his lips are sealed when it comes to development of Delhi,” said Rai.”Many residents of South Delhi take the Delhi Metro for their daily commute. But because of the increase in the metro rates, locals have faced inconvenience and transport has become unbearably expensive. Despite that, Ramesh Bidhuri failed to represent their interest and did not raise his voice against Metro fare hike either in the parliament or on the streets of Delhi. Similarly, even on the matter of sealing, Ramesh Bidhuri held his silence while merchants continued to suffer,” he said. Leaders said that in Ramesh Bidhuri’s adopted village, apart from one Mohalla Clinic constructed by the Delhi Government, he failed to provide any health or educational infrastructure in the village.last_img read more

Radiation levels safe after Nplant fire says Ukraine

first_imgKiev: Ukrainian officials said Tuesday that radiation levels remained safe after a fire broke out at a nuclear power plant, leading to the shutdown of one of the reactors. The fire, which was extinguished within an hour, began late Monday at the Rivne nuclear power station in western Ukraine, around 300 kilometres (190 miles) from Kiev. It erupted in an electrical transformer, triggering the reactor protection system and “the third reactor was turned off,” Ilona Zayets, a spokeswoman for the state nuclear agency Energoatom, told AFP on Tuesday. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince Salman ‘snubbed’ Pak PM Imran, recalled his private jet from US: Report”Radiation levels have not risen,” she said, adding that no one was hurt as a result of the incident. She said the causes are being investigated. The level of seriousness of the incident on the international scale for emergencies at nuclear stations is zero, the nuclear agency said in a statement. The third reactor remained switched off on Tuesday because the transformer needs to be replaced. Ukraine currently operates four nuclear power plants with a total of 15 reactors. Rivne power plant has four reactors. Nuclear power is an important energy source for Ukraine, accounting for around 50 percent of its electricity production. Ukraine was the scene of the world’s worst nuclear disaster when one of the reactors at Chernobyl power station, which is about 100 kilometres (60 miles) north of Kiev, exploded in 1986 during testing.last_img read more