0Shares0000ROME, October 9- Borussia Dortmund striker Ciro Immobile insists absent compatriot Mario Balotelli won’t be missed when new-look Italy host Azerbaijan for the first of two Euro 2016 qualifiers on Friday.Immobile’s positive start to life in the Bundesliga since joining the German side from Torino has coincided with a recall to the national squad in the wake of a disastrous World Cup campaign. His impressive club form is in stark contrast to that of Balotelli, who is struggling to make an impact at Liverpool since quitting AC Milan and has fallen out of favour with new Italy coach Antonio Conte.Immobile is expected to start up front alongside Sassuolo striker Simone Zaza when Italy host Azerbaijan at the Stadio Barbera in Palermo.Italy team manager Gabriele Oriali says the national team selectors will maintain a “revolving door policy”, but Immobile said the current crop of players rightly deserve their selection.“There are other strikers here who are playing very well. If they’re here, it’s because they deserve to be,” Immobile told reporters at Italy’s Coverciano training camp on Wednesday.“I know Mario very well. He’s a good lad, but it’s the coach who picks the squad.”Conte said earlier this week: “Mario has started afresh, so it’s not easy. I think we need to give him time to settle at Liverpool.“I make call-ups, not exclusions. Those are two very different things.”Immobile was part of the Italy squad that failed to get past the first round in Brazil where Cesare Prandelli’s side lost to Costa Rica and Uruguay having opened their campaign by beating England.Defender Leonardo Bonucci complained last week Italy’s World Cup preparations suffered because their “team base was a little too holiday-like”.But any thoughts of an easy ride under Conte are likely to have dissipated immediately after his appointment.Conte previously led Juventus to three consecutive Serie A titles and is known for his no-nonsense disciplinarian approach.Indeed this steely attitude was in evidence as he said that any bitterness or tension still hanging over the Juventus and Roma players after the Turin side won their bad-tempered Serie A game last weekend 3-2 was to be left for afterwards.Bonucci had helped to stoke the fires with an inflammatory tweet earlier this week.“Once you cross the door at Coverciano, all other tensions remain outside,” warned Conte.“Bonucci was wrong, and he knows he is wrong. Here, we all play for the same team. If it happens again, there will be consequences.”One of the benefits to come out of the Juventus and Roma match was the return from injury of veteran playmaker Andrea Pirlo, who seems set to line up on Friday in his usual central midfield role.Following an opening 2-0 win over Group H rivals Oslo in Norway, where Balotelli was also absent, Italy are looking to make it three wins from three and will be encouraged that they can achieve that as Azerbaijan coach Berti Vogts has lost several key players for the game.The German will be without defender Mahir Shukurov and forward Vagif Javadov, who both started in the 2-1 defeat to Bulgaria last month.Striker Cihan Ozkara and injured skipper Rashad Sadygov are also missing, meaning a number of younger players have been brought in.Adter the Azerbijan clash Italy fly to Malta for their second match in four days and the clash at the Ta’Qali Stadium is perhaps more of a concern for Conte.Malta coach Pietro Ghedin, once part of Italy’s managerial staff under Cesare Maldini, Dino Zoff and Giovanni Trapattoni, said he is brimming with condfidence.“The important thing is that my boys are improving all the time and are getting there. I am very confident,” Ghedin told UEFA.com.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
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WILDFIRES: A state of emergency is declared as walls of flames leave death and destruction in their paths. By Elena Becatoros THE ASSOCIATED PRESS ATHENS, Greece – Firefighters rushed helicopters and buses Monday to evacuate more than two dozen villages threatened by towering walls of flames that had killed 63 people while ravaging swaths of forest and farmland in Greece’s worst wildfire disaster in memory. The destruction was so extensive that authorities said they had not had time to tally the amount of burned land – or the number of people injured. Sixty-three people were known dead. A woman and her four children killed Friday, their charred bodies found with the woman’s arms around the youngsters, might have been safe if they had stayed at home. It was the only house left untouched in the village of Artemida in the western Peloponnese. The house’s white walls and red tile roof were unscathed, surrounded by blackened earth. Fanned by strong, hot winds, flames raced through grass and trees parched by three heat waves since June. Fires engulfed villages, forests and farms and scorched woodland around Ancient Olympia, birthplace of the Olympic Games. New fires broke out faster than others could be brought under control, leaving behind a devastated landscape of blackened tree trunks, gutted houses and charred animal carcasses. The destruction and deaths infuriated Greeks, who already had been stunned by deadly forest fires in June and July, and the disaster appeared likely to dominate political debate before parliamentary elections Sept. 16. Many people said the government did not react quickly enough. After declaring a state of emergency over the weekend, the government raised the possibility of arson and said several people had been arrested. A prosecutor on Monday ordered an investigation into whether arson attacks could come under Greece’s anti-terrorism and organized crime laws. On Saturday, Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis said it could not be coincidence that so many fires broke out simultaneously in so many areas. Villagers made similar charges. “These fires were set deliberately; it happens all the time,” said Adrianna Katsiki, 45, from the fire-damaged village of Varvassaina in a part of the western Peloponnese that suffered 42 deaths. In past fires, land developers have been blamed for fires, allegedly using blazes to sidestep laws that ban construction on forest land. Greece has no land registry, so once a region has been burned, there is no definitive proof of whether it was forest, farm or meadow. “It is rather late now, but the state should designate these areas to be immediately reforested, map them and complete the forest registry without further delay,” said Yiannis Revythis, chairman of the association of Athens real estate agents. “If an area is officially designated as forest land, who will burn it as it will still count as forest land?” But it was not clear who – if anyone – was responsible for these fires. “I think it is unlikely that land development was an incentive behind the arson,” said Nikos Bokaris, head of the Panhellenic Union of Forestry Experts. “The afflicted areas are not prime targets for construction. These are mountain areas where land is not that valuable.” An official of the WWF environmental group also dismissed the notion of an orchestrated arson campaign.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Four days of devastating blazes from the northern border with Albania to the southern island of Crete unnerved and angered Greeks, drawing strong criticism of the government’s response and setting off widespread suspicions and finger-pointing. The government, which declared a state of emergency, implied the destruction could be part of an orchestrated campaign of arson. But environmental experts expressed skepticism. People used garden hoses, buckets, tin cans and branches in desperate – and sometimes futile – attempts to beat back flames and save their homes and livelihoods. Frightened people called television stations pleading for help from the beleaguered fire service, and helicopters or vehicles were sent to several villages to evacuate threatened residents, although some insisted on staying to fight the flames. A helicopter flew five people out of Prasidaki in southern Greece, fire department spokesman Yiannis Stamoulis said. Another was sent to the village of Frixa, but residents there refused to leave, he said.
Kahne shrugged off his second-place run. “I figure it was definitely cooling down,” Kahne said. “I figure the (No.) 20 (Hamlin), if he had gone out at the same time as we went out, it would have been close. But I think we’ll have a really good car for the race.” Kyle Busch was third at 179.964, followed by Ryan Newman at 179.659, Jeff Burton at 179.614 and Greg Biffle at 178.971. Runaway series points leader Carl Edwards qualified 14th at 176.917. Nextel Cup drivers, who will also race in Sunday’s Sharp Aquos 500 here, swept the top 15 spots, with rookie Marcos Ambrose the top Busch regular at 176.748. ETC.: While Joe Gibbs Racing officials remained mum on the anticipated switch from Chevrolet to Toyota, Kyle Busch was more than happy to talk about it. From news services Denny Hamlin, the last of 42 drivers to make a qualifying attempt, knocked Kasey Kahne off the pole for tonight’s Camping World 300 NASCAR Busch Series race at California Speedway. Hamlin’s fast lap of 180.316 mph on Friday, came with the sun setting on a track that was finally cooling a bit after the high temperature had reached 104 degrees and the track temperature went over 140. The lap was good enough to give Hamlin his 12th Busch pole and relegate Kahne’s 180.162 to the outside of the front row. “It probably helped us quite a bit,” Hamlin said of the late qualifying draw. “It could have been the difference between the pole and maybe second. I’ve been hurt by the qualifying draw more than I’ve been helped, though, so I’ll take it.” Busch, who will leave Hendrick Motorsports to drive for JGR in 2008, said he got a call from the team earlier this week confirming the change. “We were just always kept in the loop on what exactly was going to happen with that and, when they finally made their decision, they went ahead and called us,” Busch said at California Speedway, where he will race in Sunday’s Nextel Cup race. Asked what the call was about, he reiterated, “That they were going with Toyota.” Toyota is in its first season in Nextel Cup. This is a move that will give the Japanese automaker a marquee team. Dutch Grand Prix Justin Wilson was fastest on a wet track in the first qualifying session for the inaugural Champ Car World Series race in Jassen, Netherlands. Wilson, fourth in the series standings, had the fastest lap of 1 minute, 30.656 seconds around the 2.83-mile track at Assen, at an average speed of 112.381 mph. Simon Pagenaud of France was second, 0.89 seconds behind, and another French driver, Tristan Gommendy, was third, just over a second behind Wilson. Series leader Sebastien Bourdais of France, coming off a victory in last weekend’s Belgium Grand Prix, was sixth. No hard feelings? There are no hard feelings between Dario Franchitti and IRL teammate Marco Andretti, but there’s still a matter of talking to their boss. The Indianapolis 500 champion said he and Andretti talked about last Sunday’s collision that dropped Franchitti to third at Sonoma, and allowed race winner Scott Dixon to take the points lead. “I was able to talk with him and we cleared the air,” Franchitti said after the second practice session for Sunday’s Detroit Indy Grand Prix. The same isn’t true for one of the men who signs his paycheck. Michael Andretti, one of three owners of Andretti Green Racing and Marco’s father, criticized Franchitti after last week’s race, saying the Scot should have been more patient. “I wasn’t very impressed with the reaction,” Franchitti said. “I’m sure we’ll talk about it later.”160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Danilo D’Ambrosio 1 Fiorentina are lining up a New Year move for West Ham target Danilo D’Ambrosio.The 27-year-old full-back was on Slaven Bilic’s radar in the summer but he eventually stayed put at Inter Milan.However, D’Ambrosio, who only arrived from Torino in 2014, is yet to feature in the league this season and he looks set to leave when the transfer window opens.The Hammers have been linked with a fresh move for the 27-year-old but now reports in Italy have suggested that Fiorentina are the new front-runners to land him.La Viola are hopeful of sealing a loan deal until next summer, when they will have the option to purchase D’Ambrosio, who is under contract at the San Siro until 2018.
1 Eder has scored five times for Lille, laying on four assists Swansea City striker Eder has hinted he may make his loan move to Lille permanent.The 28-year-old joined the French side in January after struggling for action at the Liberty Stadium.Eder has rekindled some form at Lille, finding the net five times and contributing four assists.The Portugal international only moved to Swansea in June of last year for £5m from Braga, but admits he could remain at Lille.“It’s possible that I stay, even though I don’t have the answer,” Eder told Lille’s official website.“If this is the case, I will do everything to continue my momentum, but also to improve and try to bring still more to the team. I like it here.”
AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECalifornia’s bungled $1 billion accounting system It’s on the particulars – or “on the ground,” as Brewer put it – where politics and personalities start to conflict. When it comes to reforming the Los Angeles Unified School District on the ground, choosing one course of action means rejecting several others. Putting one person in charge means demoting someone else. Turf is carefully guarded and egos are easily bruised. Which is why Brewer is right that a happy consensus in theory won’t amount to much in reality unless all sides in the LAUSD struggle agree to start working together “on the ground.” Villaraigosa seems to share this understanding. Even though he has good reason to be critical of the way Brewer was chosen, he’s been very supportive of the new superintendent. “I think he’s the right guy for the job and is committed to working with a partnership,” the mayor said. “PHILOSOPHICALLY, we’re on the same page,” LAUSD Superintendent-designate David Brewer III says of his relationship with Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. “When you start talking philosophically, you’re talking at 30,000 feet. So I think right now the (mayor) and I are clearly philosophically linked at 30,000 to 20,000 feet. When we get down 10,000, 5,000, and start working things on the ground, that’s where we really have to start working even more together.” He can say that again. At 30,000 feet, we all agree on education policy: Reduce dropouts, empower parents, cut waste and raise kids’ test scores. It’s easy to agree on generalities. It’s high time the Los Angeles school board, the unions and the other major players took an equally constructive approach. For too long, even though everyone has agreed on reforming the LAUSD, on-the-ground disputes have shattered lofty philosophical agreements. Brewer and Villaraigosa both seem to appreciate that cooperation is key to moving the LAUSD forward. Let’s hope the rest of the players soon catch on.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Chelsea fan arrested for allegedly racially abusing Heung-min Son Getty Images – Getty 2 Spurs investigation into alleged racial abuse of Rudiger is so far ‘inconclusive’ Balotelli is playing for his hometown club Brescia Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ But the racism row has rumbled on, with Verona’s ultras now backing Castellini.Their statement read: “If Balotelli was not ready psychologically to face the Verona fanbase and, above all, such a delicate match in which our city and our coach – among the most beloved figures – was taking his final chance at saving his job, then he should’ve said so and left his place to someone less irritable than him.“None of us would’ve been upset if he had, quite the contrary.“The personal declarations of one of the leaders of the Verona Curva cannot justify the witch-hunt sparked by the media and institutions in yet another attempt to criminalise and destroy the entire Ultras world.“This does not mean that certain chants are legitimate or acceptable, but nor are all Verona fans racists and the Verona Curva some sort of KKK coven.“Entire fanbases cannot be considered racist, but racism does exist and it is often used to create mass panic in public opinion.“This unconventional language is used more and more by public and political figures, but of course nobody would think of banning them because of some code of ethics. Tony Cascarino backs Everton to sign two strikers for Carlo Ancelotti appointed PEP TALK 2 Steve Round reveals how Mikel Arteta convinced him to join Arsenal staff He was convinced to stay by team-mates, Verona players and officials before referee Maurizio Mariani initiated the anti-racism protocol.Balotelli, who was booked for his actions, went on to score a stunning consolation goal for his side in the 85th minute in their 2-1 loss.Following the match, Verona banned one of their leading ultras, Luca Castellini, for more than 10 years for comments made about Balotelli, claiming he ‘will never be 100 per cent Italian’.He said: “We have a n***o in our team and he scored and all of Verona applauded.”The Serie A side issued a response on the official club website, stating Castellini’s words were ‘ideas contrary to the ethical principles and values of our club’. Top scorer in 2019: Messi, Mbappe and Sterling trailing Europe’s top marksman statement The statement then appeared to justify the fans’ racist action by saying the former Liverpool and Man City striker was ‘arrogant’.“We have absolutely no doubts that Balotelli is to all intents Italian, and even a Bresciano, but the arrogance that he continually gives off is unjustifiable.“The notorious ‘Balotellate’ antics are now all too well known.‘What matters more to us are the spirit of sacrifice, passion respect, motivation and sweating for the shirt, concepts that seem to be entirely unknown to him.“We condemn any gesture or provocation that is clearly hostile and discriminatory, but, we also want to give our solidarity to those who once again saw their liberty destroyed.“This time it wasn’t even by the authorities, who considered his behaviour not that serious, but by his own club.”Balotelli recently explained his reaction to the vile abuse, saying: “I know that we’re not supposed to give these people attention, but we can’t just not underline the seriousness of what they are doing either.” Liverpool transfer news live: Mbappe latest, Lille star wants to join Reds in future Getty Images – Getty on target rookie error stalemate Strugglers Wigan hold Blackburn to goalless draw in Championship LATEST update LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS Balotelli wanted to leave the pitch after being racially abused targets Brescia fans have have sided with Hellas Verona supporters instead of Mario Balotelli in the racism row that has engulfed Serie A.The former Manchester City striker kicked the ball into the crowd and threatened to walk off the pitch in the 54th minute when he was subjected to monkey chants by a section of Verona supporters. Pep Guardiola gives Man City injury update and talks Christmas schedule Ian Holloway thinks Arsenal have made a mistake in hiring Mikel Arteta latest
Letterkenny’s Cathedral Quarter project is calling on the help of businesses and sponsors across the county to invest in the innovative and ground-breaking project. Since it was first established three years ago, the project has grown considerably and the Cathedral Quarter committee is looking to appoint a full-time administrator to continue the good work and fulfil the potential of the Cathedral Quarter area.Paddy Friel, Cathedral Quarter Chairperson, believes that the Cathedral Quarter project presents an opportunity for Letterkenny and the greater northwest. “We envisage that Letterkenny’s Cathedral Quarter can have the same impact on the northwest as Galway’s Latin Quarter had on the West of Ireland. The Artisan Street of the Church Lane leads to some of Letterkenny’s most iconic buildings including St. Eunans Cathedral and Conwal Parish Church (1636), the town’s oldest building. The area has the potential to become a must-see attraction for those travelling along the Wild Atlantic Way and we need to ensure that the good work continues on a steady basis.”“To date, we’ve had great support from local businesses and people for which we are very grateful. We have had some funding made available through Donegal County Council, but we need to appoint a full-time administrator to continue the work. So far, five businesses have opened in the Cathedral Quarter which was once a derelict road”, he added.Local man and Cathedral Quarter secretary, Donnan Harvey has spearheaded the project and played a vital role in the regeneration of the Church Lane.He was working under the TUS Scheme under DLDC Ltd but that has now come to an end. Earlier this month, he announced that he wouldn’t be able to continue in his role as no other funding has become available to support his efforts: “I will be devastated to leave the project but unfortunately, if no wage is forthcoming early in the New Year then my participation in this project will come to a complete end. Over the last three years, I was charged with the responsibility of leading the project and never received any money for my efforts. The situation was manageable during the establishment phase of the project, but I just can’t go on. Like everybody else, I have bills and loans to pay.”The aim of the Cathedral Quarter project is to regenerate the historical Church Lane street and surrounding areas to create a tourist attraction in the heart of Letterkenny that can be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.Even though the project has received very little funding it has gathered significant momentum through social media and by the support of local, national and international media. The project has featured on Irish TV, RTE’s Nationwide, Irish Independent, the Irish Times as well as Pittsburgh Radio station WEDO 810 AM.The Cathedral Quarter committee has worked with many groups and different organisations including the Architectural Technology Department at the Letterkenny Institute, Letterkenny Tidy Towns, Duncan McLaren from Dedalus Architecture and Kevin Yeats to work on a development plan which was sent to the Donegal County Council this year.“Many people have given their time and effort towards the regeneration project, but we really need the support of a sponsor or group of sponsors to keep the regeneration going. A full-time administrator would really help with the great work already done,” Paddy Friel concluded. For more information on sponsorship and for queries contact Paddy Friel, Cathedral Quarter Chairperson on email@example.com. For updates visit the Church Lane – Cathedral Quarter Facebook page.Cathedral Quarter needs to keep Church Lane regeneration going was last modified: December 22nd, 2016 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)