Barba eyes NRL return after reviving career at St Helens

first_imgBarba was named the man of the match for the Saints in their Super League season opener against Castleford on the weekend and if this performance was anything to go by, we may not have seen the last of the 2016 Cronulla Sharks premiership winner playing in the NRL.Barba not only scored twice, but he also had a hand in most of their attacking raids in the eight-try romp over the Tigers. He also made an astounding try-saving tackle on winger Greg Eden, which led to Barba scoring a short time later.He has signed with St Helens until the end of the 2019 season but told NRL.com he had unfinished business in Australia and would be on the lookout for another opportunity after his St Helens stint.“Yeah of course. Obviously, that’s something that if the NRL allows me to, I’d love to come back,” he said in reference to his 12-week ban for a second positive test to cocaine.”I’m only 28 and if I get the chance after playing over here to be able to play back in the NRL, hopefully someone will take me.”Barba played a handful of games for St Helens at the end of last season after a short-lived stint in French rugby when his time at the Sharks was cut short following his drugs ban.“I’m obviously feeling good and I don’t feel I’m getting to that 30 mark yet. I know if I look after myself and continue to do the right things I’ll be able to perform at a high level for a few more years hopefully,” he said.”As far expectations on myself go, I’m looking to enjoy myself. I’m trying to just keep my footy and my family life separate from everything else and it helps me focus a little better over here.”Not having the media being so attentive with me over in Australia sort of helps me relax and it keeps me in a really good head space.”With the first round now out of the way, does Barba feel the pressure on him has alleviated?“It’s a good way to start but I’m now I’m excited to continue that and get to next week and perform week in and week out,” he said.“Winning man of the match is always good to get but now it gets a little harder as I have to keep that focus switched on every week, but as a marquee player you expect to have the pressure.He put his starring performance against Castleford down to his pre-season dedication.After a stint playing in France for Toulon, Barba said he had to do a lot of fitness work to cope with the demands of rugby league.“It’s been something we’ve all been working towards, not just myself but St Helens as well. On a personal note and a team note, I think we all performed well and it allowed me to play the way I did,” Barba said.“Obviously the stint I had in rugby union I enjoyed very much, but fitness wise, the two games require a different level.“Union is obviously very different and something I didn’t get used to while playing in France. Coming back to league, I knew I had to work hard on my fitness and I knew I had to perform at my best.”St Helens coach Justin Holbrook coach was also pleasantly surprised on Barba’s performance in the post-game press conference.“Ben was really good, especially when we were down to 12 men and he came up with that big tackle. Then, on the very next set he scores a try too. Special players produce special plays and he did two in two minutes. He was fantastic,” he said.“I didn’t predict he would have such a good night but I always said he would produce some of the things he would do. He has had a good pre-season and came back two-and-a-half weeks earlier too. If you do those sorts of things you get the rewards don’t you?And unlike his time living in France where there was a language barrier, Barba is settling in quickly with his new teammates.“There are a couple boys from back home, Dom Peyroux and Zeb Taia. We sort of keep together and keep each other company. Having them around has really made the transition easier,” Barba said.last_img read more

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PNG thrash Tonga by 114 runs

first_imgPNG batted first and set a target of 190 after batting out the full 20 overs.Jason Kila top scored for PNG with an impressive knock of 74 runs. Kila smashed 9 fours and 3 sixes.Sione Manumu’a was the best of the Tongan bowlers taking 3/26.Tonga ‘ s top order batsmen in Alois Pau’u (22) and Maamaloa Kuluka  (21) steered Tonga ‘s innings in the opening overs but their dismissals sparked a major batting collapse.Tonga lost their last 7 wickets for only 18 runs.Jason Kila with the ball proved deadly snaring 3/7. Tonga were all bowled out for 76.In the other match today, Vanuatu did it easy beating New Caledonia by 234 runs.last_img

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“Without Vizcay’s statement, Osasuna was still on the bench”

first_imgSo, Javier Tebas has assured that he asked Vizcay to make a statement to the League and consult him with a lawyer, pointing out that repentance could be valued as mitigating. Finally, the former manager decided to make a recorded statement.According to the president of the League, “Without Angel Vizcay maybe Osasuna would have been sitting here as a legal entity, maybe it would have been much worse”. On the other hand, he said that the club has collaborated with the investigation and that “in principle” no sanctions are planned in the Osasuna League for these events. The president of the Professional Football League, Javier Tebas, has denied in the trial of the Osasuna case to coerce or pressure former club manager Angel Vizcay to make a statement about possible matchmaking and said that Vizcay made a statement “totally” free and spontaneous.Thebes, who testifies as a witness in the Osasuna case, has assured that he told Vizcay that “there were significant outflows of money from Osasuna that he had signed, that the League was going to take it forward, which in our opinion was related to matchmaking, which in myopinion was going to have serious problems, and he told me what had happened. ” last_img read more

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The Metropolitan keeps pace with Vicente Calderón

first_imgEI Atlético has made a fort of the Wanda Metropolitano. Although the team is experiencing the worst season since the arrival of Simeone on the bench, home games continue to save the rojiblanco team.Before the Granada the first 50 games were completed of the new mattress stadium in Liga and the balance speaks for itself: 34 wins, 13 draws and three losses for a total of 115 points scored out of 150 possible. In this course there are seven wins, four draws and one loss that suppose 25 points obtained in the Metropolitan, which counteracts with the bad numbers of Atlético playing outside. As a visitor he has only achieved three wins, five draws and three losses, 14 scarce points that are complicating the Champions positions to which he returned thanks to Correa’s goal last Saturday, reaching the fourth place taking advantage of the Seville lost on his visit to Celta. Defeat by 0-1 against Barcelona with a goal from Messi in the last minutes he joined the prick last season against Real Madrid (1-3) and that of two courses ago Espanyol (0-2) as the only league games lost by Atlético in the Wanda Metropolitano. In Copa del Rey he won Sevilla in 2018 and adding the Champions, Chelsea is the only European team who has come out with the big booty in his visit to the feud mattress, inaugurated on September 16, 2017 with the victory before the Malaga thanks to a lonely goal from Griezmann.Comparing the figures of Wanda Metropolitano with those of Vicente Calderón, Atlético has managed to extrapolate the results and the unappealable level he had obtained in his former stadium with Simeone sitting on the bench. Yes in his first 50 League matches in Canillejas the Atleti has achieved 115 points, in the last 50 on the banks of Manzanares reached 118 points, with 37 wins, seven draws and six losses, figures offered by Ruben Martín.A local fortress which has served Atlético for stabilize between the first three classified during the entire seven seasons of Cholo. In his first league year in the Wanda Metropolitano, Atlético got 42 of their 79 points at homewhile last season they were 48 of the 76 points achieved in the course (15 wins, three draws and one loss at home). Now we have to give up again.If you want vibrate with the unique atmosphere of the Metropolitan Here you can check the matches that Atleti have left at home. See available tickets.last_img read more

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New setback for Mel in the back of Las Palmas

first_imgOther formations have been Álex Suárez, Mantovani Aythami and De la Bella; and the one formed by Eric, M. Lemos, Aythami and De la Bella; both twice, without knowing the victory. And that of Álvaro Lemos, M. Lemos, Aythami, De La Bella, also twice, with a victory against Albacete, 3-2, on day 8.From here, we have seen many mixes in the shaker of Mel with Deivid in the center of the rear accompanying Aythami or Mauricio Lemos. Srnic participating in the right back against Rayo Vallecano and his appearance in the second half of that Elche game in that position. Another one that has had to change his natural position is Benito, who has also had to play on the left side, as it might happen this weekend, and the canterano Dani Martín on only one occasion, in that same demarcation before the Mirandés, and the injured Dani Castellano, who has not played since day 5 against Almeria.In short, a large number of variants that have prevented Pepe Mel from adjusting a defensive line of guarantees, which has also joined the changes in the goal and that, with the return of Raúl Fernández, after overcoming some ailments that have had 10 months off, the different combinations and doubts for the technician increase.The sterile possession of the UDThe UD is the team with the highest percentage of possession of La Liga Smartbank, with 57.4%, according to data published by the Twitter account @statsSegunda, in the 28 days played so far.From this statistic the conclusion can be drawn that not everything is to have the ball to get the victory, since Mel’s have achieved 32 goals, with an average of almost 13 shots per game.After the departure of Jonathan Viera, the team has maintained the style of play with high levels of maintenance of the ball.On the other end is the leader, Cádiz, by Álvaro Cervera, who is the team that least wants the ball of the whole table, with 42.9%, and has scored 38 goals, with only 11 times per game. A curious fact is also that of Almeria, led by Gutierrez who with only 49.3% average possession, is the most scorer team, with 48 goals.The team that finishes the most is Real Zaragoza, by Víctor Fernández, with almost 14 shots at goal on average and 53.2% of the time with the ball at his feet. Pepe Mel has been forced this course, either for injuries or penalties, to make several changes in the defensive line, without achieving stability, which has obviously affected the team to find solidity behind. In fact, seventeen different lags are counted in twenty-eight matches played to date.The most repeated defense has been the one composed by Eric Curbelo, Martín Mantovani, Aythami Artiles and Alberto De la Bella, with six participations and a balance of two wins, three draws and one defeat. The last triumph of this quartet dates from the month of December, against Elche, by 2-3. Precisely that was the best yellow league result to date, since it accumulates eight consecutive games without knowing the victory.After this combination, is the one formed by Álvaro Lemos, Mantovani, Aythami and De la Bella, being, a priori, the headline for this year and that he has only been able to establish four times, with three wins and one defeat. Since last October 18 before Cádiz, with a 0-2 defeat, this game has not been able to leave, due to the injury suffered by the Galician side on Day 13, against Fuenlabrada, at the end of that same month . The estimated range was between three and four weeks, due to a fibrillar rupture in the right quadriceps, but it has been extended for more than three months, with the player having to go to specialists from outside the island to recover and already in the final stretch of it. The yellow coach will have to re-engineer them in the next match against AD Alcorcón, if Alberto de la Bella’s discharge is confirmed, which he had to withdraw from last Tuesday’s training due to a possible muscular overload, without confirming its scope. Only two trainings remain this week to Mel to know the availability or not of the Basque defender, a fixed in the plans of the Madrid coach.Once you know the importance of the injury of De la Bella, you can open, again, multiple combinations in defense, such as opting for 3-5-2 with wide rails, which did not give good results against Deportivo de La Coruña in Riazor, or bet on Benito in the left lane losing, yes, offensive power. Such is the relevance of the Basque side in the coach’s plans, despite his last bad performances, that he is the player of the squad that has played the most minutes throughout the season, with 2,147 in 25 league games. Hence, its possible absence means a new headacheExperimentslast_img read more

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Arteta, worried about not being able to retain Aubameyang

first_img14 The Spanish coach was asked about the interest of other teams in the striker, among which he became Barcelona: “They are absolutely right to love him, since he is an excellent player. It is normal for large teams to want him, but I hope we can convince him that this is the right place for him.”Arteta finally explained that they want him to stay at all costs, although he understands that a player of his level wants to play the Champions League, a competition for which they have not managed to qualify lately: “I think it has been difficult for him, since he is a player with high expectations. He wants to play in the best competitions with the best players. He is our most important player and there is no doubt about the impact he has on the team. We have to convince him that he stays with us. “ He acknowledges that at first he had doubts about the attacker, doubts that quickly dissipated: “Before taking office I had some doubts about him, but he showed me how committed he is.” Premier League* Data updated as of February 24, 2020 Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta spoke at a press conference about the situation of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The Gabonese striker scored two of the three goals that gave his team the victory against him Everton (3-2): “I am very happy with him. He is scoring important goals and, as captain, he is setting a great example for all other players with his way of working in defense.”last_img read more

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Rubi’s 7 lives

first_imgThe Alcoraz Betis has done nothing but confirm the rRubi’s esilience, who was already able to turn two dismissal threats with Espanyol and Huesca in his two previous adventures. Y end both with a resounding success in addition. In Alcoraz he reached the first place in the Second table on 17-18 on day 14 and kept it until 30, already immersed in a streak of eight games without winning (four draws and four losses) that almost leads him. He left the direct promotion posts but the recovered right after, with five victories in the following six matches that certified the first ascent of the Aragonese club to the highest category. And Cornellà. That was worth it for get to Espanyol, where he lived in the 18-19 a brilliant start until reaching the second position on day 11 with a victory against Athletic. But then there was another crash. Ten defeats and one draw in the next 12 games, only relieved by a win against Leganés, they put him on the verge of dismissal with Chen Yasheng, who decided to keep him and he took the cat to the water. From day 22 to 38, Espanyol only lost twice to complete a final straight with five wins and three draws that left him, on the last day, in Europa League positions after 13 years. “The coach’s situation? Come on week to week and after Real Madrid we will revaluate it, “he said three days ago Alexis Trujillo, coordinator of the technical secretariat of Betis. The words confirm that the post of Rubi is back in the air after having harvested one victory in the last ten league games and also fall in the Cup eliminated by Lightning, in sixteenths. 14th in the table, with the descent closer (although still far, to eight points) than the goal of going to Europe, the Catalan coach plays it against what is now the worst possible rival of the championship, The Real Madrid leader.Accustomed already. · What if I feel my position threatened? That question this year is very common and now unfortunately because we are not where we should be. But it does not worry me, I work for Be close to victory. Then whether we win or not depends on other things. ” Rubi did not speak from the topic but from the experience. This year, at Betis, he was already saved from the impeachment twice as if it were a James Bond movie. Did Fekir before the Celtic, at the end of October, with a bit on the same horn. And the same would happen with Channels before Valencia, also in Villamarín a few weeks later, the November 23. The epic smiled again at the Catalan coach, who in recent seasons has become accustomed to saving borderline situations.last_img read more

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Atalanta is already in Valencia

first_imgThe encounter, which will be held next Tuesday at 9 pm, it will be behind closed doors so the fans of the che team cannot access either. Valencia tried to allow access only to its subscribers, but from the Ministry of Health they believed it was best not to open the stadium to any type of public to prevent the displacement of tifossi. Atalanta is already in Valencia. The first members of the Italian team They have already moved to the capital of the Turia in a first advance to the city. So The Bergamasco team bus has already been glimpsed through the streets of the capital of Turia this morning Despite this, footballers and the coaching staff still remain in Italy, a country that yesterday raised the alert protocol for the coronavirus and has limited movements at its borders. Unless new measures were imposed, those of Gasperini may move to Valencia tomorrow with total normality since despite the aforementioned limitations, The Italian government allows travel under justified causes. Not so his fans to whom the entity already returned the amount of the tickets and the flight to anyone who had acquired it.last_img read more

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MAN CITY VS CRYSTAL PALACE

first_imgMAN CITY (4-2-3-1)HART, SAGNA, DEMICHELIS, OTAMENDI, KOLAROV,FERNANDINHO, FERNANDO, DE BRUYNE, SILVA, STERLING, AGUEROPALACE (4-2-3-1)CHAMAKH, BOLASIE, PUNCHEON, ZAHA,LEDLEY, McARTHUR,SOUARE, DELANEY, DANN, WARD,HENNESSEYManchester City had 22 shots against Everton on Wednesday, but still failed to score in a 0-0 draw.Palace, meanwhile, suffered their fourth game without a win in the Premier League when they were beaten 1-0 at bottom club Aston Villa on Tuesday.It was also the fourth time in a row that they have failed to score; they have now gone 362 minutes without finding the net in the league. It is the first time the Eagles have gone four top-flight games without a goal since February 1998 (when they could not find the net in five successive Premier League outings).These teams have met twice already this season. In September, at Selhurst Park, City stole the points thanks to a last-minute winner from Kelechi Iheanacho. And six weeks later, at the Etihad Stadium, City won 5-1 in the Capital One Cup, with five different scorers.Palace have never won at City in the Premier League, losing the last three and drawing two of five. Indeed, they last won there in December 1990 in the old First Division.last_img read more

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Points standing

first_imgPOINTs STANDING P W D L GF GA GD PtsLeicester 15 9 5 1 32 21 11 32Arsenal 15 9 3 3 27 13 14 30Man City 15 9 2 4 30 16 14 29Man U 15 8 5 2 20 10 10 29Tottenham 15 6 8 1 25 12 13 26Crystal P 15 7 2 6 20 15 5 23West Ham 15 6 5 4 25 21 4 23Liverpool 15 6 5 4 18 17 1 23Everton 15 5 7 3 28 20 8 22Watford 15 6 4 5 17 16 1 22P W D L GF GA GD PtsStoke City 15 6 4 5 13 14 -1 22Southampton 15 5 6 4 21 18 3 21West Brom 15 5 4 6 14 19 -5 19Chelsea 15 4 3 8 17 24 -7 15Swansea 15 3 5 7 14 22 -8 14Norwich 15 3 4 8 17 27 -10 13Bournemouth 15 3 4 8 18 30 -12 13Newcastle 15 3 4 8 16 30 -14 13Sunderland 15 3 3 9 17 29 -12 12Aston Villa 15 1 3 11 13 28 -15 6last_img read more

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