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Sokratis says Arsenal will find it easier to defend against Liverpool ▷ Kenya News

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– Sokratis Papastathopoulos believes Arsenal’s next game against Liverpool will not be difficult

– The Greek footballer is of the opinion that Arsenal will find it easier to defend against the Reds

– Arsenal and Liverpool have both won their first two games this season in the Premier League

Arsenal defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos has made it clear that his side will find it easier to defend against Liverpool than Burnley.

On Saturday, August 17, Unai Emery’s men defeated Burnley in what was a tough Premier League game as Arsenal won their first two EPL games this season.

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Arsenal will be on their way to face Liverpool this weekend in another tough battle in the Premier League at Anfield.

Last season, the Gunners suffered a 5-1 defeat at Anfield, but Sokratis believes the encounter this term will be an easier one.

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“The 5-1 last season…it was not the game to take five goals – there was the penalty kicks, we made mistakes,” Sokratis said according to Mirror UK.

“I think this year will be different, but we have to improve of course from the work we do with the coach and his staff,” he declared.

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Liverpool are currently topping the Premier League standings with six points after two games same as Arsenal who occupy second position, but separated on goal difference.

Do you have an inspirational story you would like us to publish? Please reach us through news@tuko.co.ke or WhatsApp: 0732482690 and Tuko news.

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Bottas puts Mercedes on top

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Speed king: Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas set the best time in winter testing © AFP / Josep LAGO

MONMELO, Spain, Feb 28 – Valterri Bottas took his Mercedes to the top of the time charts once again on Friday’s final day of pre-season Formula One testing but teammate and world champion Lewis Hamilton warned performances were “not perfect”.

Two weeks out from the season-opener in Melbourne, Bottas, runner-up to Hamilton in the world championship in 2019, clocked a best run of 1min 16.196sec off a total of 79 laps.

The Finn also finished the two sessions of winter testing with the fastest overall time of 1:15.732, the only driver to dip below the 1min 16sec mark.

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo filled out the top three on Friday with Hamilton in fifth.

“On the whole, these tests were good but not perfect,” admitted Hamilton, who this season eyes equalling the record of seven world titles held by German legend Michael Schumacher.

“We have had a lot of problems that we are trying to solve,” he added in reference to the need for the team and clients Williams having to change power units after breakdowns.

“We will see how long it will take to resolve them, but it is better to discover these things in tests.”

Mercedes put in most laps in Barcelona with 903 ahead of Ferrari (844) and McLaren (802).

– Ferrari ‘not hiding’ –

They also introduced the revolutionary DAS (Dual Axis Steering) system last week which had rivals scratching their heads over its potential impact in the forthcoming championship.

“Their form is good and it’s better to have concerns during the tests than in the race,” said Christian Horner, the boss of Red Bull.

Not perfect: World champion Lewis Hamilton © AFP / Josep LAGO

Horner had the satisfaction of seeing Verstappen, who was third in the 2019 standings and is widely-viewed as a world champion-in-waiting, second fastest Friday and second overall.

Ferrari, the only team not to have beaten their times of 2019 on the same circuit, were left in cautious mood.

They dominated testing 12 months ago but once they got to Australia, reality hit them hard when Bottas swept to victory, the first of eight wins for Mercedes.

Ferrari had to wait until September, the 13th race of the 2019 campaign, to win a race courtesy of Charles Leclerc.

“We are not hiding,” said Ferrari team chief Mattia Binotto. “We are not yet fast enough to hope to win in Australia. But the season is long — we will have the opportunity to improve and be ready to win.”

Test times on Friday:

Valtteri Bottas (FIN/Mercedes) 1:16.196 (79 laps), Max Verstappen (NED/Red Bull) 1:16.269 (45), Daniel Ricciardo (AUS/Renault) 1:16.276 (65), Charles Leclerc (MON/Ferrari) 1:16.360 (181), Lewis Hamilton (GBR/Mercedes) 1:16.410 (90), Esteban Ocon (FRA/Renault) 1:16.433 (75), Sergio Perez (MEX/Racing Point) 1:16.634 (154), Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP/McLaren) 1:16.820 (163), George Russell (GBR/Williams) 1:16.871 (146), Daniil Kvyat (RUS/AlphaTauri) 1:16.914 (160), Romain Grosjean (FRA/Haas) 1:17.037 (86), Kimi Raikkonen (FIN/Alfa Romeo) 1:17.415 (115), Kevin Magnussen (DEN/Haas) 1:17.495 (29), Alexander Albon (THA/Red Bull) 1:17.803 (59)

Best driver times from six days of testing:

Valtteri Bottas (FIN/Mercedes) 1:15.732 (437 laps), Max Verstappen (NED/Red Bull) 1:16.269 (414), Daniel Ricciardo (AUS/Renault) 1:16.276 (368), Charles Leclerc (MON/Ferrari) 1:16.360 (442), Lewis Hamilton (GBR/Mercedes) 1:16.410 (466), Esteban Ocon (FRA/Renault) 1:16.433 (376), Sergio Perez (MEX/Racing Point) 1:16.634 (441), Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP/McLaren) 1:16.820 (446), Sebastian Vettel (GER/Ferrari) 1:16.841 (402), George Russell (GBR/Williams) 1:16.871 (394), Daniil Kvyat (RUS/AlphaTauri) 1:16.914 (399), Robert Kubica (POL/Alfa Romeo) 1:16.942 (112), Romain Grosjean (FRA/Haas) 1:17.037 (399), Pierre Gasly (FRA/AlphaTauri) 1:17.066 (370), Kimi Raikkonen (FIN/Alfa Romeo) 1:17.091 (300), Lance Stroll (CAN/Racing Point) 1:17.118 (341), Nicholas Latifi (CAN/Williams) 1:17.313 (343), Antonio Giovinazzi (ITA/Alfa Romeo) 1:17.469 (323), Kevin Magnussen (DEN/Haas) 1:17.495 (250), Alexander Albon (THA/Red Bull) 1:17.550 (366), Lando Norris (GBR/McLaren) 1:17.573 (356)

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Bundesliga Youth Program launched in Kenya

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NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 28 – The German Bundesliga kicked-off its Youth Ambassador Program in Kenya to develop a group of 35 young adults aged 18-25 into self-asserted community leaders as part of a long-term commitment to grow football internationally.

In partnership with streetfootballworld,
Transforming Young Stars of Africa (TYSA) and Bundesliga club TSG 1899
Hoffenheim, the select group of promising youngsters will participate in a 1.5
year-long development program.

It will focus on several educational and social
components, from personal development to communication for societal change and
collaborative work.

Speaking about the program, Bundesliga International
CEO Robert Klein said: “As one of the leading sport’s leagues on the planet we
understand we have a responsibility to make a positive impact in local
communities, using ‘Football as it’s meant to be’ to reach far beyond sports.”

He continued: “The Bundesliga is renowned for the
strong communities built around our unique clubs in Germany. Through the Youth
Ambassador program we will transport this special quality to Kenya as these
young role models serve as educators across the region. The Bundesliga is proud
to support this new initiative as we continue to inspire future generations
both on and off the pitch.”

During the program, the young leaders will acquire
general football coaching capabilities and learn how to utilise the game as a
tool to teach life skills and educate others on different challenges in daily
life. They will become influencers in their local communities and engage with
their peers on social media through their shared passion for the Bundesliga.

Pay Television Company StarTimes Media who are the
exclusive broadcasters of the Bundesliga in Kenya lauded Bundesliga
International for their long term strategy in the country noting that, as the
official broadcaster, they are proud to not only entertain soccer fans through
live matches but equally by bringing the Bundesliga experience through such
initiatives.

“As the exclusive broadcaster of the Bundesliga in
Kenya, we are happy to associate with a league that has progressively shown
their long term commitment not just through live Bundesliga matches to our
subscribers but equally bringing on board the much needed practical league
experience to our upcoming soccer players. We congratulate the 35 youth
ambassadors as we look forward to seeing them put the skills they learn to good
use for themselves and their colleagues alike,” said StarTimes Regional
Marketing Director, Mr. Aldrine Nsubuga.

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim Managing Director, Peter
Görlich, added: “In addition to the commitment to high-performance sport and as
a key-player in German professional football, TSG Hoffenheim’s DNA also
includes the development of innovations and the commitment to social
responsibility.

Through such initiatives, projects and commitments
in a regional, national and international context, TSG pushes our values under
the motto ‘TSG is movement’, a strategy for the future, through which one’s own
development and social added value form a unit.

One area of action for this strategy is defined by
the African continent, where TSG Hoffenheim has been involved in various
programs for several years, and in some cases has taken over local
responsibility. Health, innovation, social and ecological responsibility have a
big impact here.

We are therefore very happy to expand our engagement
in Africa and to be part of the ‘Bundesliga Youth Ambassador’ program in Kenya
to support the local community and to promote the development of the country.”

Throughout the course of the program, the
ambassadors will participate in weekly educational and football coaching
sessions delivered by the organisations supporting this project.

Once they have acquired the relevant skills, they
will put their newly developed qualities to use for years to come as part of a
long-term approach.

Together they will be using football as a tool to
teach an understanding of fairness and equality, autonomy and how to handle
frustration and emotions appropriately.

As part of a five-day kick-off event in Nairobi
starting on 27 February, the young leaders will join training sessions led by
TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, develop their interpersonal and life skills, and
experience the unique atmosphere of the Bundesliga games as part of an
exclusive watch party on Matchday 24.

The Bundesliga is a league that always puts its fans
first, bringing them together across all areas of life.

The Youth Ambassador Program is an important part of
the league’s unique philosophy to embrace the social dimension of football and
convey the values and ideals of ‘Football as it’s meant to be’ to younger
generations around the world.

(Visited 11 times, 11 visits today)

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Arsenal post loss for first time 20 years

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By AFP
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The cost of life outside the Champions League was made clear when Arsenal published accounts showing the club had made a loss of £27.1 million ($34.6 million).

Friday’s financial revelations -the Gunners’ first overall loss in nearly 20 years – followed their shock last 32 Europa League exit at the hands of Olympiakos after the London club conceded a last-minute goal at the Emirates Stadium.

Thursday’s loss in Europe’s second-tier club tournament means Arsenal, who reached last season’s final, will miss out on further broadcasting revenue, as well as potential prize money.

And with the Gunners seven points adrift of the top four in the Premier League as well, they are struggling to qualify for next season’s edition of the Champions League.

Arsenal’s parent holding company published accounts covering the year ending May 31 2019, which report the group’s loss for the period after tax as £27.1 million – compared to a profit of £56.5 million from 2018.

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The club said overall operating profits were impacted by “continued investment in player wages”, which increased to £231.7 million.

The accounts also showed “fairly limited” player trading activity, compared to total profit on sales of some £120 million in 2018 involving the departures of the likes of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott.

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Arsenal said this, coupled with other operating profits “adversely impacted by participation in the Uefa Europa League as opposed to the more lucrative UEFA Champions League”, had “a significant impact on overall profitability”.

“Our player trading profit for this financial year was limited and this combined with a second consecutive season of Europa League football has meant the club recorded its first overall loss since 2002,” said club chairman Chips Keswick.

“For 2019/20 we will see increased commercial revenues from Adidas and our renewed deal with Emirates, but another season outside the Champions League will continue to apply pressure to our financial results.”

Arsenal’s losses were a stark contrast to Liverpool, who on Thursday announced a pre-tax profit of £42 million last year despite a record £223 million investment on players.

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