Moyes eager for Anfield triumph

first_img A win for Everton will certainly mean Moyes’ men, currently sixth in the table, will finish this season above seventh-placed Liverpool, with the current gap between them standing at five points after 35 matches played. It would be the second campaign in succession that the Toffees have secured a higher final position than the Reds, but Moyes’ focus is more on this term’s bigger picture – the hunt for a European berth. “You want to finish above every team – I wanted to finish above Manchester United and Manchester City this season,” Moyes said. “Do I want to finish above Liverpool? Of course I do. But it can’t be our sole objective, and I would be surprised if it was Liverpool’s to finish above us. “In terms of our target at the moment, we are looking to see if we can catch Tottenham or one of the other teams above us.” Everton are three points behind fifth-placed Spurs, having played one game more. Press Association Everton boss David Moyes has stressed his desire to beat Liverpool in Sunday’s Merseyside derby at Anfield is not driven by any sense of personal mission.center_img Moyes has been in charge of the Toffees for 11 years, but is still to oversee an away victory against the Reds. The Scot has emphasised that if Everton pull off their first Anfield victory since 1999 this weekend, his thoughts will be on its significance for the club as a whole rather than for his own CV. Asked what it would mean to him personally if his side won this weekend’s Barclays Premier League clash, Moyes said: “Nothing personally. For Everton – for the team and the supporters – it will mean an awful lot, but personally, it is not an important thing really. I’m looking forward to trying to get a result for the supporters.” last_img read more

Mohamed Elneny gunning for Arsenal glory on three fronts

first_img Press Association Arsenal’s new signing Mohamed Elneny hopes his arrival can contribute towards an ambitious treble this season. The Egypt international has completed a drawn-out £5million transfer from Basle “subject to the completion of regulatory processes” but he is expected to be registered in time to be involved at Stoke on Sunday. And with the Gunners top of the Premier League, in the fourth round of the FA Cup and the last 16 of the Champions League there is plenty to play for. “I am feeling confident in there,” said Ramsey. “I know my team-mates have the ability to pick my runs out and give that final ball for me to get on to it. “It was a good ball from Joel (Campbell) again so I was delighted with that goal.” The game saw Olivier Giroud score twice, meaning he has found the net in the last 11 away matches, taking his tally to 18 for the season and 12 in the league. “It shows character. Overall he is improving game-by-game and that is very positive,” Wenger said. “This team has quality and spirit. I could smell every time we went into the final third we could be dangerous.” They will need all that attacking intent at the Britannia Stadium where they have not won in five visits, including three defeats. Ramsey added: “We have a tough game coming up against Stoke – we haven’t found it easy the last few times we have been there but we will be looking to get back to winning ways and get back on another run.” The latter seems the toughest target to achieve with Arsene Wenger’s side drawn against defending champions Barcelona, but that has not stopped Elneny setting his sights high. “I am hoping that we win the Premier League and cup this season, and the Champions League as well,” he told Arsenal Player. “Arsenal is one of the world’s greatest teams, and I am very keen to participate positively with my new team and to give my best for the team and for myself. “Arsenal is one of those teams that everyone enjoys watching and of course I would love to play for such a great team. It is an indescribable feeling (to have signed). “Mr Wenger is a highly-respected manager and one of the world’s best managers; it is my honour to be trained under his management. “I would like to tell (the fans) that, although you have not seen much of me, I promise I will contribute positively with the team.” While the best Elneny could hope for is a place on the bench for Sunday’s trip to Stoke, in-form midfielder Aaron Ramsey is set for a key role. The Wales international has scored in his last two matches, including his side’s opener in the entertaining 3-3 draw at Anfield, and he admits he is confident about his sharpness in and around the penalty area. last_img read more

With Legends Classic title, Orange finally beginning to live up to early hype

first_img Published on November 29, 2010 at 12:00 pm Comments Jim Boeheim wanted to answer one last question. There were things left unsaid.Seated at the Boardwalk Hall podium, he scanned the assembled press in Atlantic City, N.J., for any further inquiries about his team’s Legends Classic championship. He would make sure everything was cleared up, even if he and the press were told — urged — by a tournament employee that the press conference was over.With the one final question, he cleared the air about Syracuse’s performance through six games. He attempted to do it after he was asked about his comments after Syracuse’s second game, when he called the Orange ‘overrated.’ Once more he cleared the air about what he meant then and where he feels the team is now.‘I said that (we were overrated) four games ago,’ Boeheim said. ‘I just said what was obvious. Well, when we haven’t played well, we have won. We haven’t played well for five games, and we managed to win the five. Tonight we did play well, and that was the difference.’That was the big difference. With the end of the two-game tournament in Atlantic City, N.J., Boeheim and the Orange players felt SU took strides in playing like a Top 10 team. But more specifically, with the 80-76 victory over Georgia Tech Saturday, Syracuse basked in the first performance of the young season in which SU believed it played up to its talent.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textIt was what was expected out of the Thanksgiving weekend trip. Boeheim and the SU players said it would be the first true test of the year.The No. 8 Orange (6-0) will look to build off that performance Tuesday while hosting fellow 2010 Central New York NCAA Tournament team Cornell (2-4) at 7 p.m. inside the Carrier Dome. The Orange and the Big Red both reached the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament last year, as Cornell lost to No. 1-seeded Kentucky in the Dome.But it’s a game that comes for SU light-years away from the 86-67 win over Canisius on Nov. 14, when Boeheim called the Orange overrated.At the crux of that: After the five games with which Boeheim wasn’t pleased, SU found a rhythm, especially offensively. A successful offense was the paramount step off the two tussles against major conference teams. SU shot 48 percent over the weekend after entering the games shooting 40 percent — and 32.6 percent in first halves.For SU guard Scoop Jardine, Saturday’s win was much simpler, though. It was just that — a win.‘It’s a win, we get better from it,’ Jardine said. ‘We learn from it.’With the matchup against the Big Red, Syracuse will have to learn against a similar inferior opponent like the four SU faced to start the season. Cornell is a shell of the team that last appeared in the Dome. It lost four starters from last year, along with head coach Steve Donahue. The sole returning starter is junior guard Chris Wroblewski, who is averaging a team-high 15.3 points per game.Unlike Cornell, Kris Joseph is professing that this year’s incarnation of SU is a team without just one go-to player. He was happy with the Legends Classic title, calling it a ’10 out of 10′ as SU won the way he expects to win this year. Not by blowing out teams but by playing a physical, balanced, competitive brand of basketball.‘We are going to have to fight till the end,’ Joseph said. ‘And one thing I found out about us is we have a lot of heart. … That’s one thing we are going to need to do throughout the remainder of the year. Keep fighting.’SU fought enough for the win. But after the game, the scene of Boeheim not at the podium but in SU’s locker room hinted at the fact that he said SU still has a ways to go.Void of almost all of the press, Boeheim’s sons smiled and kidded as they coddled the Legends Classic trophy. Around the locker room wall, though, their father slumped in a chair with an entourage of a half-dozen people circling him. He was tired from the weekend.There is more that needs to be done, and he said that.‘This was a tremendous tournament for us,’ he said. ‘But we have certainly got to play better.’aolivero@syr.educenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

‘Imperial Presidency’: Blamo’s Missed Opportunity, Ellen’s Challenge

first_imgFormer Senator and former Internal Affairs Minister Blamo Nelson, we are sure, has a predictable response to his critics. They complain that he did not realize that Ellen was an ‘imperial President’ until he had lost his Senate seat in Grand Kru County and his job as Internal Affairs Minister.His response, we are also certain: “Better late than never.”Such a response, of course, does not mitigate (ease, diminish) the utter contempt which the Daily Observer’s online readers heaped upon him over the past week. Many argued vigorously that both as Senator and as Internal Affairs Minister, he had great opportunities to DO something about the ‘imperial’ nature of the Liberian presidency.Both positions in government, at once high profile and powerful, his critics rightly contended, were very serious opportunities missed by Blamo. As Senator, he could have persuaded the President and his legislative colleagues to push the Governance Commission’s powerful and hopeful agenda—to give serious consideration to the GC’s historic challenge—to legislate its series of recommendations for the decentralization of government and the devolution of power. We will not say that Senator Nelson DID NOTHING toward this objective. We only ask, WHAT did he do?After losing his Senate seat, Ellen gave him another posh (noble, high class) job—Internal Affairs Minister – one of the most powerful in government. That was THE GOL office from which to push decentralization. He could have mobilized the interior peoples, who comprise the nation’s powerful majority, with all their influential organizations, including the traditional societies—Poro, Sande, etc., paramount and clan chiefs – in order to bring pressure to bear on their legislators to pass some of the bills propelling the move toward the devolution of power—passing on to the people some of the President’s powers. Did Internal Affairs Minister Blamo Nelson do any of these? This, once again, spells our frustration with the so-called progressives of the 1970s. They made all those noises against the Tubman and Tolbert governments, and as soon as their (the Progressives) time came to share the power and responsibilities of government, they fell flat on their faces. Blamo Nelson was definitely one of them. As a staunch member of the Progressive Alliance of Liberia (PAL), he was closest to Baccus Matthews. They organized April 14 rice demonstration that turned into the Rice Riots; and also the March demonstration demanding the resignation of President William R. Tolbert, Jr. Both of these demos led to Tolbert’s bloody overthrow and murder, and several PAL officials were immediately ushered into top positions of government. Baccus became Foreign Minister, succeeding the executed C. Cecil Dennis Jr.; PAL’s Legal Advisor, Chea Cheapoo, became Attorney General and led hundreds of Liberians to prison, many of whom never came out alive. PAL’s Oscar Quiah became Minister of Internal Affairs. Some say Blamo Nelson became the first post-coup GSA Director General. Those in power in Liberia today must recall what they said and did in their resistance to past governments and now ask themselves: Have we done, or are we doing better now? This question points directly to Blamo Nelson’s former boss, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who was vehemently vocal against not only the Tolbert government, which she served twice as Assistant Finance Minister for Fiscal Affairs and later as Finance Minister, but also the Tubman administration and, of course, the Doe and Taylor administrations, both of which she helped remove.Before her election she chaired the Governance Reform Commission, which later became the Governance Commission. Dr. Amos Sawyer and his team of officials and consultants did an effective job in developing all the recommendations toward decentralization and the devolution of power. Everyone is wondering why it has taken President Sirleaf so long to push these through legislation. Here we are now, 10, going on to 11 years later, and she is still appointing County Superintendents, District Commissioners and City Mayors, and exposing herself to the accusation of being an ‘imperial President.’ Absolutely NO ONE expected that of her—NO! Not our beloved Ellen, who knew all the problems and pledged all the solutions to make a decisive difference to move Liberia decisively forward!Tomorrow, when she is no longer President, will she fall into the same trap as has Blamo Nelson, severely criticizing her successor for being an ‘imperial President’?We challenge her to use her remaining time in office to implement the devolution of power by legislating the GC’s many recommendations toward decentralizing the government.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more