Singapore’s economy shrinks at slower pace as virus curbs eased

first_img“The worst is over for Singapore, but the path to recovery is still a bit bumpy,” Song Seng Wun, a regional economist with CIMB Private Banking, told AFP.In July-September, gross domestic product shrank 7.0 percent year-on-year, according to preliminary data released by the trade ministry.While a heavy fall, it was better than the record 13.3 percent drop registered in April-June, with many businesses having re-opened as Singapore’s outbreak slows.Compared with the previous quarter, the economy grew 7.9 percent, rebounding from a 13.2 percent drop, the ministry said. Singapore’s coronavirus-hit economy shrank at a slower pace in the third quarter as restrictions were eased, official data showed Wednesday, but the trade-reliant city-state still faces a long road to recovery.The financial hub plunged into its first recession since the 2008 global financial crisis in the second quarter when the government closed businesses as part of drastic measures to contain infections.One of the world’s most open economies, Singapore is seen as a bellwether for the health of global trade, and its economy’s dramatic deterioration rang alarm bells. Manufacturing, which includes key semiconductor exports, was up 2.0 percent, a turnaround from negative growth in April-June.The services sector also shrank at a slower pace, although it was still weighed down by the anemic performance of the key tourism sector as global air travel remains largely grounded.Construction was down 44.7 percent, but that was better than the previous quarter’s near 60 percent plunge.Singapore’s central bank also kept monetary policy unchanged Wednesday, saying an “accommodative policy stance” was appropriate as the economy recovers.Singapore’s trade-reliant economy is typically hit first by external shocks before ripples spread across the region. However, it usually also recovers quickly from any downturn.The city-state won praise for keeping the pandemic in check in the early stages only for serious outbreaks to emerge later in crowded dormitories housing low-paid migrant workers.But its outbreak has slowed markedly in recent weeks, and only a handful of cases are being recorded a day.Topics :last_img read more

Chelsea players not on Jorginho’s level of understanding, says Maurizio Sarri

first_imgAdvertisement Advertisement Sarri thinks Jorginho’s need to get up to speed (Picture: Getty)‘I think that he played very well in the last match, better in the second half than in the first half.‘So, for him, it’s very important to finish the match in that way.‘I think that he can do better. But he needs all the team to understand very well our way of football.’More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man City Comment Chelsea play Fulham on Sunday (Picture: Getty)Jorginho impressed in his early days at Chelsea as Sarri went unbeaten in his first 12 games as manager.But Chelsea now sit five points off four place in the Premier League and need to beat relegation battlers Fulham to keep pace with Manchester United and Arsenal.More: FootballBruno Fernandes responds to Man Utd bust-up rumours with Ole Gunnar SolskjaerNew Manchester United signing Facundo Pellistri responds to Edinson Cavani praiseArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira moves Jorginho is under pressure at Chelsea (Picture: Getty)Maurizio Sarri has blamed his Chelsea players for making his summer signing Jorginho look bad this season.A difficult few months at Stamford Bridge has seen Jorginho face criticism for his performances, with some pundits questioning if the midfielder is cut out for the Premier League.Chelsea bounced back from defeat in the Carabao Cup final with a 2-0 win over bitter rivals Arsenal and travel to Fulham on Sunday. Sarri previews Fulham clash, ‘hasn’t decided’ on goalkeeperTo view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that supports HTML5 video Play VideoLoaded: 0%0:00Progress: 0%PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 11:21FullscreenSarri previews Fulham clash, ‘hasn’t decided’ on goalkeeperhttps://metro.co.uk/video/sarri-previews-fulham-clash-decided-goalkeeper-1873886/This is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Sarri signed Jorginho from Napoli because the Italy international was familiar with his coaching demands and says Chelsea fans will not see the best of him until his team-mates are up to speed.AdvertisementAdvertisement‘Jorginho has a very strong character, a very strong personality,’ Sarri said.‘So I can believe that he has no problem to play under pressure. Coral BarrySunday 3 Mar 2019 12:44 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link806Shares Chelsea players not on Jorginho’s level of understanding, says Maurizio Sarrilast_img read more

Pennsylvania COVID-19 Early Warning Monitoring Dashboard Update for Sept. 24 – Oct. 1

first_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Pennsylvania COVID-19 Early Warning Monitoring Dashboard Update for Sept. 24 – Oct. 1 Press Release,  Public Health Governor Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine today released a weekly status update detailing the state’s mitigation efforts based on the COVID-19 Early Warning Monitoring System Dashboard. Updates are released each Monday.The update includes the following:Level of community transmission as a basis for the recommendations for Pre-K to 12 schools to determine instructional models.Data on cases among 5-18-year-olds.Cases that reported visiting a business among potential locations where exposures may have occurred.Updated travel recommendations.The dashboard is designed to provide early warning signs of factors that affect the state’s mitigation efforts. The data available on the early warning monitoring dashboard includes week-over-week case differences, incidence rates, test percent-positivity, and rates of hospitalizations, ventilations and emergency room visits tied to COVID-19. This week’s update compares the period of September 25 – October 1 to the previous seven days, September 18 – September 24.“Our percent positivity and incidence rate for the commonwealth both increased this week, which serves as a reminder the virus still remains a threat in our communities,” Gov. Wolf said. “We must continue our focus on taking actions to protect ourselves and others, such as wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, washing our hands, avoiding large gatherings, and downloading the COVID Alert PA app. Together, we can unite as Pennsylvanians and work to prevent the spread of the virus.”As of Thursday, October 1, the state has seen a seven-day case increase of 6,164; the previous seven-day increase was 5,070, indicating a 1,094-case increase across the state over the past week.The statewide percent-positivity went up to 3.7% from 3.2% last week. Counties with concerning percent-positivity include Centre (9.4%). Northumberland (9.3%), Snyder (7.8%), Lebanon (6.6%), Montour (6.6%), Perry (6.5%), Schuylkill (6.5%), Wayne (6.1%), Lackawanna (6.0%), Indiana (5.9%), and Lawrence (5.4%). Each of these counties bears watching as the state continues to monitor all available data.Community TransmissionAs of Friday’s data, Centre, Northumberland, Montour and Snyder counties were in the substantial level with known sources of outbreaks contributing to community transmission. The departments of Education and Health will speak with school district representatives in each of the four counties to discuss the implications of this level of transmission.For the week ending October 1, 17 counties were in the low level of transmission, 46 counties in the moderate level, with four with substantial transmission:Low – Cameron, Clarion, Clinton, Crawford, Elk, Forest, Fulton, Greene, Jefferson, Juniata, McKean, Potter, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Venango, Warren, WyomingModerate – Adams, Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Bedford, Berks, Blair, Bradford, Bucks, Butler, Cambria, Carbon, Chester, Clearfield, Columbia, Cumberland, Dauphin, Delaware, Erie, Fayette, Franklin, Huntingdon, Indiana, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lawrence, Lebanon, Lehigh, Luzerne, Lycoming, Mercer, Mifflin, Monroe, Montgomery, Northampton, Perry, Philadelphia, Pike, Schuylkill, Somerset, Tioga, Union, Washington, Wayne, Westmoreland, YorkSubstantial – Centre, Montour, Northumberland, SnyderCases Among 5-18-Year-OldsThe Department of Health is providing weekly data on the number of statewide cases of COVID-19 among 5 to 18-year-olds.Throughout the pandemic, there have been 10,167 total cases of COVID-19 among 5 to 18-year-olds. Of that total, 615 occurred between September 25 – October 1. For the week of September 18 – September 24, there were 624 cases of COVID-19 among 5 to 18-year-olds.Cases by demographic group is available on the DOH website.Business VisitsThe Department of Health is providing weekly data on the number of individuals who responded to case investigators that they spent time at business establishments (restaurants, bars, gym/fitness centers, salon/barbershops) and at mass gatherings 14 days prior to the onset of COVID-19 symptoms.Of the 5,722 confirmed cases reported between September 20 and September 26, 39 percent (2.252) provided an answer to the question as to whether they spent time at a business establishment.Of those who did provide an answer, 14.4 percent, or 325, answered yes, they visited a business establishment 14 days prior to onset of symptoms:51 percent (165) of those who said yes reported going to a restaurant;29 percent (94) of those who said yes reported going to some other business establishment;12 percent (40) of those who said yes reported going to a bar;10.5 percent (34) of those who said yes reported going to a gym/fitness center; and5.5 percent (18) of those who said yes reported going to a salon/barbershop.Of the 5,722 confirmed cases, 40 percent (2,265) answered the question as to whether they attended a mass gathering or other large event. Of the 40 percent, 15 percent (344) answered yes to whether they attended a mass gathering or other large event 14 days prior to onset of symptoms.Compared to data reported on September 28, this week’s data saw an increase in people going to some other business (28 percent vs. 23 percent) and going to a salon or barbershop (5.5 percent vs. 4 percent). Numbers went down for this week’s data for people who reported going to a restaurant (51 percent vs. 55 percent), and slightly for a gym/fitness center (10.5 percent vs. 11 percent). The number of those who reported going to a bar remained the same (12 percent). The number of those who attended a mass gathering or other large event went up from 11 percent to 15 percent.On July 13 contact tracers began asking more specific questions on the types of businesses visited and if individuals attended a mass gathering, defined as more than 250 people in attendance outdoors or more than 25 indoors.The numbers above highlight business settings and mass gatherings as possible sites for transmission. With less than half of those asked about what types of businesses they visited or if they attended a mass gathering responding to the question, the department is reminding Pennsylvanians that it is essential that people answer the phone when case investigators call and to provide full and complete information to these clinical professionals.Travel RecommendationsAlso today, the Department of Health updated its travel recommendations, originally announced on July 2, to add Minnesota, Montana, Nevada and Wyoming and remove Georgia from the list of states recommended for domestic travelers returning from to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania.It is important that people understand that this recommendation is in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania. A concerning number of recent cases have been linked to travel, and if people are going to travel, we need them to take steps to protect themselves, their loved ones and their community, and that involves quarantining.Gov. Wolf continues to prioritize the health and safety of all Pennsylvanians through the COVID-19 pandemic. Pennsylvanians should continue to take actions to prevent the spread of COVID-19, regardless of in what county they live. This includes wearing a mask or face covering anytime they are in public. COVID-19 has been shown to spread easily in the air and contagious carriers can be asymptomatic.center_img October 05, 2020last_img read more

IPE Top 400: APG retains top spot among Dutch asset managers

first_imgPGGM’s assets increased to almost €170bn over the first six months of 2014, as a result of an average return of 8%, the addition of €500m pension fund Smurfit Kappa Netherlands and net contributions of €1.7bn.Meanwhile, APG’s assets rose by €19bn to €343bn over 2013, almost entirely due to “solid” returns on investments, according to spokesman Harmen Geers.ABP reported a net return of 6.2% over 2013. As of the end of 2013, it was Europe’s fourth-largest asset manager, with PGGM taking ninth place.Over the first five months of 2014, APG’s assets increased by €26bn to €369bn, thanks to average returns of 7.5% for its clients, as well as interest hedges.Robeco attributed the €16bn increase in its AUM to a strong investment result, supported by the continuing recovery of financial markets.It also cited considerable investor interest in its equity and hedge funds capabilities, adding that inflows in the US came mainly from retail clients.According to the Rotterdam-based asset manager, 47% of its assets are from institutional investors.It added that this share had hardly changed last year.The former Rabobank subsidiary was taken over by Japanese financial services group Orix Corporation, which said it was committed to supporting Robeco’s current strategies and processes.It left Robeco’s managing board, including its chief executive Roderick Munsters, in place, and said it would keep its Rotterdam-based head office.Meanwhile, Robeco has indicated that it plans to set up a London sales office within four years.MN, provider for the large metal schemes PMT and PME, saw assets increase by €1.9bn to more than €92bn.It cited a return of approximately 1% at both schemes, as well as net contributions of €900m from PMT.PME’s assets also saw a boost from the addition of pension funds Poseidon (€119m) and Voestalpine (€89m).Assets under management at ING Investment Management dropped by €8.5bn to €174bn.The asset manager did not respond to IPE’s repeated requests for additional information.After a recent IPO, the asset manager is now – together with ING’s former insurance subsidiary Nationale Nederlanden – part of NN Group.ING IM is to continue its activities under the name NN Investment Partners.The European Commission recently ordered ING to offload its insurance and asset management subsidiaries, as the company received financial support from the Dutch government during the financial crisis.Aegon attributed the drop in its AUM to a decrease in revenue-generating investments during the second quarter of 2013. It said the decrease was mainly driven by “negative market effects”, resulting from higher interest rates. SNS Asset Management44,20044,000 Company2014 Total2013 Total ING Investment Management International174,124182,826 It attributed the increase mainly to the addition of two new clients – the €8.5bn scheme for general practitioners (SPH) and the €5bn pension fund for painters and decorators (Schilders).The remaining growth was due to returns on investments, as well as a net inflow of contributions of at least €2.5bn from the predominantly young participants of the healthcare scheme, according to spokesman Maurice Wilbrink. APG, asset manager for the €309bn Dutch civil service scheme ABP, has again topped the ranking of asset managers in the Netherlands, according to IPE’s 2014 Top 400 Asset Managers survey. Aegon Asset Management and Robeco group came second and third, respectively – with assets under management (AUM) of €239bn and €205bn, respectively – while ING Investment Management International came in fourth place.With assets of almost €155bn at year-end, PGGM, the asset manager for the €140bn healthcare scheme PFZW, came fifth.PGGM also saw the steepest rise – of nearly €22bn – in AUM. Aegon Asset Management239,739244,842 Robeco Group205,230189,310 Kempen Capital Management31,43028,460 SPF Beheer16,30015,750 APG343,000324,000 Syntrus Achmea Asset Management69,73066,220 31/12/13 (€m)31/12/12 (€m) PGGM154,898133,081 TKP Investments17,26116,584 MN92,23890,464 Theodoor Gilissen Bankiers10,00010,000 Altera Vastgoed1,8391,708 BNG Vermongensbeheer5,1006,400 Delta Lloyd Asset Management48,80051,400 Bouwinest Real Estate Management6,0605,800last_img read more

​Alecta builds real assets debt platforms as search for yield goes on

first_imgTony Persson, head of fixed income and strategy at AlectaCredit: Evelina CarbornThe key here – as with many of its yield-boosting methods – has been Alecta’s capacity to assume illiquity risk, Persson said.“People stay within our pension fund for a long time, so we can have a lot of illiquid assets and that has been one way to increase returns,” he said.It has also been possible to ratchet up bond returns, Persson said, by working with partners to develop new types of financial products, such as the world’s first African social government bond.“In essence this is still the same strategy of finding illiquidity premiums at a low-risk level, because we get the insurance wraparound, in this case from the World Bank and big re-insurance companies in Europe,” he said.Other strategies for adding points to yields have been to avoid the most expensive government bonds as far as possible, investing instead in issuance from supra nationals; government-guaranteed credits; funding of government-enterprises as well as lending to regions and municipalities both in Sweden and internationally.Among early efforts to boost fixed-income returns in the wake of the 2007/8 financial crisis, Persson said Alecta’s decision in 2012 to buy Spanish and Irish government bonds when they were yielding close to 10% – after a pledge by the then European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi in the face of severe market pressure on the two countries’ debt that the bank would safeguard the euro – became its most profitable.With eight and nine-year Swedish bond yields currently negative, Persson acknowledges that many market participants now appear to believe rates could remain at very low levels for a decade. However, he said he leans towards the view that a temporary excess of demand is the main factor behind these rates.“Government debt has been shrinking for many years in a well-managed country, and the central bank now owns half the stock of government bonds as part of its QE [quantitative easing] strategy,” he said.This is on top of the fact that some investors are forced into government bonds due to regulation, said Persson. “That’s a theme that will stay, because bank regulation is changing continuously – they are being hit with tons of regulation,” Persson said.In its efforts to utilise such opportunities, Alecta will probably move closer and closer to the borrower, he said.“We are now bypassing the banks through various platforms, and we have been building our own in the direct lending markets,” he said, adding that with a fixed-income portfolio of around €50bn to manage, he and his team needed to find big opportunities.“In order to gain economies of scale we need fairly large ticket sizes – we need a platform where we can allocate a couple of billion, the level it had been the role of the banks to provide,” he said.Alecta’s fixed-income team is now in the process of developing both a Swedish residential lending platform, and separately, a platform through which it can invest in infrastructure debt in Europe.“In the first of these areas we are building an internal platform which we will drive ourselves and regarding infrastructure debt, we are cooperating with another major investor, pooling our resources,” Persson said, adding that his firm had not yet gone public with the details of these.The Swedish pension fund has also replaced its traditional senior unsecured bank bonds with secured funding structures with the same banks but at better spreads and far lower risks. In the latest phase of its hunt for higher fixed-income yields, Sweden’s largest pension fund Alecta is building up two platforms through which it can invest directly in Swedish residential lending – as well as infrastructure debt on a European level.The work is the latest in a range of strategies the SEK975bn (€92bn) pension fund has turned to in the last decade to maximise returns as fixed-income yields collapsed and even turned negative, according to the investor’s bonds chief.Tony Persson, Alecta’s head of fixed income and strategy, told IPE in an interview: “We will continue to look at areas where the banks are withdrawing, and we can see they have been building up real estate lending but now seem to have rather full exposures to that.”When banks left a certain segment, he said, there were normally some good deals to be had but institutional investors such as Alecta.last_img read more

S Leone Ebola workers dump bodies

first_img Tweet The bodies have now been removedBurial workers in the Sierra Leonean city of Kenema have dumped bodies in public in protest at non-payment of allowances for handling Ebola victims.The workers, who went on strike over the issue, left 15 bodies abandoned at the city’s main hospital.One of the bodies was reportedly left by the hospital manager’s office and two others by the hospital entrance.A BBC reporter in Sierra Leone says the striking workers have now been sacked. The hospital has not commented.Sierra Leone is one of the countries worst affected by this year’s Ebola outbreak, with more than 1,200 deaths.Burial workers are especially at risk of becoming infectedKenema is the third largest city in Sierra Leone and the biggest in the east, where the Ebola outbreak first emerged in the country.The burial workers told a BBC reporter they had not been paid agreed extra risk allowances for October and November.The BBC’s Umaru Fofana in Freetown says the bodies have now been taken away but the workers had refused to end their strike.There has been no public comment by the hospital’s management or the Sierra Leonean health ministry.Danger after deathThe burial workers’ industrial action came two weeks after health workers went on strike for similar reasons at a clinic near Bo – the only facility in southern Sierra Leone treating Ebola victims.Ebola has killed more than 5,000 people in West Africa this year, mostly in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the outbreak a global health emergency.People are infected when they have direct contact through broken skin, or the mouth and nose, with the blood, vomit, faeces or bodily fluids of someone with Ebola.The virus can be present in urine and semen too.Infection may also occur through direct contact with contaminated bedding, clothing and surfaces – but only through broken skin.The virus is still dangerous and present in the body after death. Burial workers are at risk of infection and commonly wear protective clothing and take other precautions.Health professionals say those who have died from Ebola should be buried promptly to lessen the risks of infection spreading. 272 Views   no discussions Share HealthInternationalLifestylePrint S Leone Ebola workers dump bodies by: BBC News – November 25, 2014center_img Sharing is caring! Share Sharelast_img read more

Mullen cashes in at Clash at the Creek VII

first_imgBy Greg AregoniFRANCIS CREEK, Wis. (June 25) – In 2014, Mike Mullen started on the pole for 141 Speedway’s 50 lap, $10,000 to win Xtreme Motor Sports IMCA Modified feature. There were rumblings that there was no passing and that all he did was stay out in front of the field.Mullen quieted the naysayers Thursday night and proved why he is one of the top IMCA Modified drivers in the nation. Mullen won the last-chance qualifier, started 14th on the main event field and picked up his second straight Clash at the Creek win.The new Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational ballot qualifier raced his way into the lead with six laps left and took the rich checkers ahead of Shawn Kilgore, Russ Reinwald, Jeff Taylor and Johnny Whitman.Seventy-four Modifieds vied at the Clash and nine states were represented in the main event.Whitman grabbed the lead early on from the pole and put distance on the rest of the field. Kilgore worked from the sixth starting spot to the runner-up position before the first caution flag flew on lap eight.On the restart, Kilgore powered up on top of the circle and made his bid for the lead. Kilgore and Whitman had a power struggle up top as they exchanged the lead numerous times over the first half of the race.With the lead duo battling hard, Reinwald came into the picture to make it a three-car race. He caught the leaders and made the race a three-wide battle on lap 28. Kilgore grabbed the lead for himself as they made their way into lapped traffic.A final caution on lap 37 bunched the field up for a final run to the checkered flag. Mullen and 12th starting Jeff Taylor made the race up front a five-car battle when the race resumed. Mullen picked his way around both Reinwald and Whitman, then set his sights on Kilgore and had all the open air he needed down low.With Kilgore working the top, Mullen ran the shortest way around the track. Mullen shot into the lead with six laps remaining and never looked back in capturing his second straight Clash at the Creek win.Brandon Czarapata was the IMCA Sunoco Stock Car winner and, for a second straight night, Kelsy Hayes prevailed in the Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMod feature.Modified feature results – 1. Mike Mullen, Seymour; 2. Shawn Kilgore, New Franken; 3. Russ Reinwald, Juneau; 4. Jeff Taylor, Cave City, Ark.; 5. Johnny Whitman, DePere; 6. Brad Lautenbach, New Franken; 7. Josh Long, Little Suamico; 8. Benji LaCrosse, Green Bay; 9. Jordan Grabouski, Beatrice, Neb.; 10. Justin O’Brien, West Union, Iowa; 11. Brian Irvine, Oelwein, Iowa; 12. Kyle Strickler, Mooresville, N.C.; 13. James Tebon, Algoma; 14. Brian Mullen, Seymour; 15. Hunter Marriott, Brookfield, Mo.; 16. Jason Wolla, Ray, N.D.; 17. R.C. Whitwell, Tuscon, Ariz.; 18. Eric Mahlik, Milwaukee; 19. Tony Wedelstadt, New London; 20. Tim Czarneski, Denmark; 21. Dan Roedl, Beaver Dam; 22. Johnny Saathoff, Beatrice, Neb.; 23. Curt Lund, Redwood Falls, Minn.; 24. Mike Wedelstadt, New London; 25. Dylan Smith, Osceola, Neb.last_img read more

Juve’s Matuidi tests positive for coronavirus

first_imgRelatedPosts COVID-19: NCAA to revoke erring airlines licence over non-compliance FRSC to Schools: We’ll arrest, prosecute drivers who flout COVID-19 rules Sanwo-Olu: We’re committed to fulfilling promises to Lagosians Juventus and France midfielder Blaise Matuidi has tested positive for the coronavirus, the Turin-based Serie A club said in a statement. Juve said Matuidi, a World Cup winner with France in 2018, was in self-isolation at home and not showing any symptoms. He is the second player at the club, one of the biggest in Europe, to test positive after Daniele Rugani last week.Tags: Blaise MatuidiCoronavirusCOVID-19Daniele RuganiItalyJuventusSerie Alast_img

Henderson targets ticket to Brazil

first_img “I’ll keep working on my game. I want to improve whatever position I’m playing and I want to do the best. “The manager has put a lot of faith in me. It gives me confidence. “He’s improved my game since he came to Liverpool which I am very thankful for. “Hopefully I can keep repaying him, keep working hard on the training pitch and improving and learning off other players. “I want to keep improving all the time as I keep saying and hopefully I can do that and keep fit. “I am just enjoying playing football at the minute and obviously I have played a lot since the start of the season. I’m just enjoying it. “It doesn’t matter what position I’m playing. I’ll give 110 per cent wherever I am put. “I am learning each and every position so when I’m put in that position I know exactly what I’m doing and to the best of my ability.” Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson still hopes to secure his seat on the plane to Brazil by playing his way into England’s World Cup squad. Press Association “I think everyone wants to play for England at the end of the day,” he told reporters. “It’s a massive opportunity and to play for your country is a real honour but all I can do is keep playing well for Liverpool and keep working hard. “There’s nothing more I can do. When it comes to selection it’s up to the England manager to select the best squad he can for the upcoming games.” Henderson’s current fortunes are a world away from 12 months ago when, in manager Brendan Rodgers’ first season at the club, it seemed he was destined for a bit-part role at best. Having turned down a move to Fulham as a makeweight in the failed bid for Clint Dempsey the midfielder vowed to improve and make a success of his career at Anfield. That hard work, coupled with winning over his manager, has made a huge difference to Henderson. “There were a few areas that the manager and I spoke about to improve on,” he added. “I went away and did what he said and I’ll carry on doing so. The 22-year-old was not selected by Roy Hodgson for the last two qualifiers, which guaranteed the national team’s progress to next summer’s tournament in South America. That is despite the fact he has enjoyed an impressive opening to the campaign with the Reds, playing every minute of the Barclays Premier League season so far. last_img read more

Frenchman abused by Chelsea fans open to UK invite to ‘eradicate’ racism

A French man who was racially abused and pushed off a Paris Metro train by Chelsea fans has said he will come to the UK and help “eradicate” racism if the club invites him. Mr Sylla said his life was still “shaken up” after the incident and that he is not working and on medication. But after refusing an offer from Chelsea shortly after the incident to visit the club – when fans raised money for him to come over – he has now decided he will come if he can help in the battle against racism in football. He told BBC Radio 5 Live: “I plan to go. When they first invited me it was early on. I did refuse their invitation, I just want to do it at a later stage. I had an open wound and it was hurting me, so I couldn’t go out and I was scared. “But the door is open. Even if Chelsea want to invite me I will go. We will talk about racism and everything about racism to try to eradicate it in the world of football. “I am 200% up for this, even in the future. I want it to be my fight.” Mr Sylla said both he and his family are still “traumatised” by what happened five months ago. He told Radio 5 Live: “My life has been shaken up. I am on medication, I am traumatised – not only me, but my children are traumatised too. “Because of them I no longer work. Because of them insulting me in the train my life has been turned upside down. I take anti-depressants, I’m taking them now. Imagine that for five months – a father who has worked all his life, the head of the family who now can’t work because of those people. “It’s not normal in my opinion. The only thing I want is for justice to be done and for them to be extradited.” He also denied that he had anything to do with starting the incident, saying: “The world saw the images. If I was aggressive or if I started it there would have been an investigation into it. “But you know very well I am not aggressive at work and I have maintained the good upbringing I got from my parents. They’re the ones who started it, they were proud of what they were doing.” Souleymane Sylla was repeatedly pushed backwards off a carriage amid chants of “we’re racist, we’re racist, and that’s the way we like it” as Chelsea supporters travelled to their club’s Champions League match against Paris St Germain on February 17. Five men were given football banning orders of up to five years today, and all received lifetime bans from the club. Press Association read more