He’ll be an England goalscorer! Darren Fletcher tips West Brom rebel Saido Berahino for the top

first_img1 Saido Berahino celebrates West Brom captain Darren Fletcher has praised Saido Berahino’s ambition and backed him to become a key man for England in the future.The 22-year-old felt the wrath of Baggies fans after expressing his disappointment that he did not seal a move to Tottenham on transfer deadline day.But he is in the good books again after firing West Brom to victory against Villa on Saturday, and Fletcher is delighted to see his teammate back doing what he does best.“I thought he was fantastic on Saturday. He’s a great player and we want him to be a great player for West Bromwich Albion while he’s here,” Fletcher said.“It’s great he has ambition. I love that he has that and wants to play at the highest level. I think he’ll score goals for England in the future and that’s how highly I rate him.“While he’s here I reiterate to do your best, work as hard as you can and keep the respect of the dressing room because football’s a funny game, you never know what can happen in six months or a year down the line,” he said.“So I reiterated that to him and I thought he was fantastic on Saturday. I’d like to think everything has healed now. If you want to improve as a team then you need everyone in the right direction.“There was a little bit of a mixed reaction last week but Saturday was a great reaction and we want the fans behind the team, behind everyone and pushing in the right direction. That will be best for the club going forward.”last_img read more

Gordon Strachan signs two-year contract extension with Scotland

first_img1 Gordon Strachan will take charge of Scotland’s World Cup qualifying campaign after signing a two-year extension as manager.Strachan had taken time to consider his future after Scotland finished fourth in their European Championship group, behind Germany, Poland and play-off contenders Republic of Ireland.But the vocal backing of an 11,000-strong travelling support in Scotland’s final qualifier, a 6-0 win against Gibraltar, helped persuade Strachan to stay on.A statement from the governing body read: “The Scottish FA is delighted that Gordon has agreed to remain in charge after the unwavering support demonstrated by the Scotland fans throughout the European qualifying campaign.”Strachan said: “It is an honour and a privilege to manage my country and, in a way, that has made the disappointment of not qualifying for Euro 2016 all the more profound.“None the less, the reaction from the supporters throughout the campaign, and in particular from those who travelled to Faro in their thousands, is an experience that will live with me for the rest of my life. It was a recognition that the players’ efforts had been appreciated.“That appreciation and goodwill has also been apparent in the messages of support I have received this week, from emails and letters to chats in the street.”Strachan, who watched Scotland Under-21s draw with Iceland on Tuesday night, will now begin work on preparing his squad for a group involving England, Slovakia, Slovenia, Lithuania and Malta.“I want the best for our country and for those players and I believe we can make Scotland proud in the upcoming qualifiers,” the 58-year-old said.“For that reason, I am delighted to have been asked to continue in my role and I look forward to working with my backroom staff and the players to improve on the previous campaign and look forward to the World Cup qualifiers with optimism.”Strachan will again be assisted by Mark McGhee, who took over as Motherwell manager on Tuesday, and former Fir Park boss Stuart McCall.SFA chief executive Stewart Regan added: “The board of the Scottish FA has been consistent in our belief that Gordon should continue the good work that has been apparent in many performances and results throughout the previous campaign.“Similarly, the supporters and the players have been overwhelming in their view that Gordon is the national coach to lead us into the World Cup qualifying campaign.“The mutual respect and stability that exists is essential to our future success and we all look forward to planning for Russia 2018.” Gordon Strachan last_img read more

Arsenal and Tottenham set for battle over wantaway PSG starlet

first_img1 Adrien Rabiot Arsenal and Tottenham target Adrien Rabiot has asked Paris Saint-Germain if he can leave the club on loan in January.The 20-year-old is tipped for a big future and the French champions are reluctant to let him go.However, the midfielder is struggling to break into the first team and wants to secure a short-term switch in order to boost his playing time.Arsenal and Tottenham have both scouted the Frenchman on several occasions and they could now snap him up on loan in January.“To be in a great club and to earn lots of money is not enough. When you train all week, you want to be on the pitch,” Rabiot told Telefoot.“Sometimes it is not possible and it is frustrating. Paris is my town. To force my way through here, that would be great.“To spend my entire career at PSG, that is the president’s dream. If I was starting, I would look at things differently, that is for sure.“I have asked the president to be loaned this winter if my playing time goes down between now and January.“It is something that he cannot refuse, I know that he likes me a lot.”last_img read more

Sampdoria set to hijack Liverpool’s move for Serie A star

first_imgSampdoria are planning on hijacking Liverpool’s move for Inter Milan defender Andrea Ranocchia.Jurgen Klopp’s side were leading the chase for the Italian, who has fallen out of favour with Inter boss Roberto Mancini and looks destined to leave this month.But now, according to Sky Italia, Sampdoria are currently locked in negotiations with Inter and aim to complete a deal for the 27-year-old next week.Liverpool may return with a higher offer for Ranocchia but the loan signing of Steven Caulker this week means the club are more relaxed about landing another defender.Ranocchia, a former Inter captain, joined the Nerazzurri from Genoa in 2011 and has made 166 appearances for the club. Andrea Ranocchia 1last_img read more

San Pedro detention center loses accreditation

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.Citing agency policy, the official declined to release the inspection report or elaborate on why the facility failed the renewal inspection, done every three years. Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman Virginia Kice confirmed the lost accreditation, but said it was not related to detainee care – an issue that’s drawn criticism and lawsuits. “It was a facility maintenance issue,” said Kice, who declined to elaborate. Kice said the problem was corrected, and the agency planned to apply for reaccreditation early next year. The facility is still operating, and it was unclear what continued loss of accreditation could mean for it long-term. The immigration detention facility in San Pedro, one of several nationwide to come under scrutiny from immigrant and civil-rights groups, has lost its accreditation. The center houses several hundred illegal immigrants who have been detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and are facing deportation. The facility lost accreditation in August after failing to comply with mandatory standards, an official with the Alexandria, Va.-based American Correctional Association told The Associated Press. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to make public comments. Accreditation is important for immigration and other correctional facilities because it shows that national standards of care have been met, provides arguments against lawsuits and can reduce liability and insurance costs. Ranjana Natarajan, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, said immigration facilities strive for accreditation, so having it revoked was significant. “We don’t yet know the specific reason” for losing it, she said. “But we do know there are serious problems at San Pedro.” The San Pedro facility came under sharp criticism last summer when a transgender Mexican immigrant with AIDS being housed there died while in custody. The family claimed Victor Arellano was improperly denied medical attention, a contention immigration officials rejected. In recent years, the ACLU and other groups have sued ICE over several detention facility issues, ranging from alleged inadequate access to health care to prolonged detention. A lawsuit filed by the ACLU in June, aiming to stop immigration authorities from forcibly drugging deportees, cited an immigrant allegedly drugged at the San Pedro facility.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Justice for Sammy: Two gangsters get life in prison in shooting death

first_img Fast-forward to Aug. 13, 2005. Sammy was walking down an alley with Juan Pedroza, who had a distinctive limp from a childhood car accident, according to court documents. Diaz, Vega and Betancourt were nearby at a party when they spotted the two. Diaz asked if Pedroza was the “fool who ratted on Clumsy.” It’s unclear if they thought he was Victor Pedroza and mistakenly targeted him. “Let’s (mess) him up,” Betancourt said before he charged toward Pedroza. Betancourt threw the first punch, then Vega jumped in. Pedroza, who had a metal plate in his head, had little use of one arm. Sammy jumped in, trying to fend them off. Moments later, Diaz pulled out a gun and shot him in the head. During Thursday’s hearing, a bald-headed Diaz shot glances at rows of red-eyed relatives and smiled a few times while Vega kept his eyes focused ahead. Diaz’s attorney, Robert Schwartz, said trial witnesses contradicted each other, and his client was not involved in the shooting. “For my client to be convicted under this evidence is a miscarriage,” he said after the sentencing. But when Vega’s attorney asked the judge to reconsider his stiffer sentence, she said, “It’s one arrest after another. If he isn’t a perfect example of recidivism, I don’t know what is.” The lead investigator on the case, Los Angeles police Detective Steve Castro, called the outcome “a great day for justice. Gangs like to intimidate; they don’t like people speaking against them, making crime reports,” said Castro, who attended the sentencing. “It weakens their gang.” Bravo, a housekeeper, sat in the back of the courtroom as the judge spoke. Her stomach knotted. Her heart felt as if someone stepped on it. “It has been hard on me,” she said. “Since that day, I am not the same person anymore.” Afraid of retribution, she and her 13-year-old daughter moved from their North Hollywood home with the help of law enforcement. She was even escorted to her car Thursday by sheriff’s deputies for protection. At home, she keeps a candle burning next to her son’s photograph in her living room. Every birthday, every holiday, the sorrow begins anew. On that August night two years ago, she knew something was wrong. She had just arrived in California the year before after escaping an abusive husband in Texas and had tried so hard to protect her son from violence. “I felt something in my heart,” she said, recalling how she went searching the neighborhood for Sammy that night. “When I went to go look for him, I saw a lot of ambulance and police. They already had him in the bed. I was running and crying and they didn’t let me close to him.” At the hospital, she watched as he clung to life. “I told him how much I love him and I didn’t want to miss him, and not to go,” she said. He died 10 minutes later. For the latest news and observations on crime in Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley, check out the Daily News’ crime blog by clicking here.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m. Van Nuys Superior Court Judge Darlene Schempp sentenced Enrique Diaz, 32, to 40 years to life in prison for shooting Sammy in the head. Sammy had intervened when several other gangsters were beating up his disabled friend, Juan Pedroza, whom they considered a snitch for talking to police about another case. Luis “Wicked” Vega, 28, who participated in the killing, was sentenced to 55 years to life because he had a prior “strike” under the state’s “three strikes” law for using a cane to beat someone. Both maintain their innocence and will appeal, their attorneys said. Another defendant, Marcos “Shyster” Betancourt, who was 14 at the time and struck a deal with prosecutors to testify against Diaz and Vega, is awaiting sentencing. He likely will be sent to the California Youth Authority and be released when he is 25. Prosecutors called the case a classic example of gang intimidation and revenge that ended in the worst way. A few months before the killing, Pedroza’s brother Victor was harassed by Roberto “Clumsy” Fletes, a parolee and North Hollywood Boyz member. Fletes demanded Pedroza pay “taxes” because he believed he was selling drugs on the gang’s turf. But Victor Pedroza refused and went to the police to file a report against Fletes, eventually testifying against him at a parole hearing. VAN NUYS – The day Leticia Bravo’s 15-year-old son was shot to death by gang members for trying to protect his disabled friend is the day her own slow death began. “They killed my son, but they killed me,” she said, tears welling in her eyes. “You don’t die immediately. The pain goes on and you die day by day.” Thursday, when a judge sentenced the two North Hollywood Boyz members to more than 40 years in prison each for killing Sammy Salas, Bravo said she had at least ended the most painful chapter of her life. “I hope some day they will be sorry,” she said. “I don’t know why they did it. It is nothing Sammy did to them.”last_img read more

Web site lists San Pedro events

first_imgA new Web site, http://pedrocalendar.com, has been established to be the hub for all San Pedro events and meetings. Creator Kristina Smith, who works with the three San Pedro neighborhood councils, said she heard many residents talking about the need for such a site. “I hope it will grow into `the’ calendar for San Pedrans to find out what is going on in our great town,” Smith said. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

Vatican will publish Knights Templar trial

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.They include a 14th-century parchment showing that Pope Clement V initially absolved the Templar leaders of heresy, though he did find them guilty of immorality and planned to reform the order, according to the Vatican archives Web site. But pressured by King Philip IV of France, Clement later reversed his decision and suppressed the order in 1312. Only 799 copies of the 300-page volume, Processus Contra Templarios – Latin for Trial against the Templars – are for sale, said Scrinium publishing house, which prints documents from the Vatican’s secret archives. Each will cost $8,377, the publisher said Friday. An 800th copy will go to Pope Benedict XVI, said Barbara Frale, the researcher who found the long-overlooked parchment tucked away in the archives in 2001. The Knights Templar, which ultimately disappeared because of the heresy scandal, recently captivated the imagination of readers of the best-seller The Da Vinci Code, which linked the order to the legend of the Holy Grail. By Frances D’Emilio THE ASSOCIATED PRESS VATICAN CITY – It’s not the Holy Grail, but for fans of The Da Vinci Code and its tantalizing story line about the Knights Templar, it could be the next best thing. Ignored for centuries, documents about the heresy trial of the ancient Christian order discovered in the Vatican’s secret archives are being published in a limited edition – with an $8,377 price tag. The new Vatican work reproduces the entire documentation of the papal hearings convened after Philip IV of France arrested and tortured Templar leaders in 1307 on charges of heresy and immorality. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Galpin Auto Sports offers custom service, products

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.On Nov. 9, Beau Boeckmann, president and chief designer for Galpin Auto Sports, will reveal what’s hot in the customizing world, tips and tricks for customizing on any budget. Do you have a customizing question or a story or photo to share? If so, we want to hear from you, so e-mail [email protected] Customizing a Mustang can range from some wheels and tires to the car pictured here that was fixed up at Galpin Auto Sports in Van Nuys. It has everything you need to shred the streets, starting with a 5.0-liter 302-Stroker engine that gives it 630horsepower. As if that wasn’t enough power, it boasts a 150horsepower NOS fogger unit, Bassani long tube headers and a three-in Bassani exhaust pipe. While a beast on the street, this Mustang is classy on the inside with completely custom handmade racing seats, color-keyed roll cage, an original Boss Hurst shifter and much more. Boss packages start at $15,000. Since the early 1950s, customizing cars has been an intricate part of Galpin. From installing the first sunroof in America in 1965 to the conversion van industry in the 1960s, from saving the Mustang convertible in 1980 to extreme car makeovers on TV shows such as MTV’s “Pimp My Ride,” the love affair with customizing is bigger than ever. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Social Security is political necessity

first_imgFaced with billions in bond redemptions along with perpetual government deficits from other sources, the Treasury will have to borrow real money rather than simply make bookkeeping entries. Worse, it must borrow real money from an increasingly skeptical world (read: China, India, Japan and Saudi Arabia). It is increasingly clear that our dollars are less welcome than they have been in the past. Retirees will get their promised Social Security benefits because it is a political necessity, whatever the consequences in the financial markets. I don’t think we can be as confident about the really big promise we call Medicare. The unfunded liabilities of Medicare Part D, the prescription drug program, are nearly as large as the unfunded liabilities of Social Security. And that’s just a small part of the program! The future costs of Medicare are massively greater than Social Security. That, I believe, is where retirees can expect to see the most creative weaseling, and from both political parties. Q: We invest in American mutual funds and Fidelity mutual funds. Considering the upheavals that the markets are experiencing, we keep our heads above water except for one fund. Fidelity Real Estate Investment was a shining star, but now it is a crashing star. I want to move to another fund, but my wife says to hang on. Your opinion, please. – R.M. Q uestion: I am conflicted by what I have been reading about Social Security in your columns and book “The Coming Generational Storm.” On the one hand, you recommend we delay taking Social Security benefits until we reach full retirement (66 for me) if we can afford it because the payment is so much higher and we will realize more money in the long run. On the other hand, you paint a pretty bleak picture about Social Security’s long-term solvency and the real possibility of significant benefit cuts in the future. That makes me think I better start taking Social Security as soon as I can if that worst-case scenario plays out. I could go either way, but what is a 60-year-old boomer to do? – S.S. ANSWER: The squeeze that is coming probably won’t be a direct hit on Social Security benefits. There are two reasons for this, financial and political. The financial reason is that our government has accumulated Social Security trust fund assets – a horde of Treasury obligations – from all the extra employment taxes we’ve been paying since the last big Social Security reform in the 1980s. Those assets are on the official books. They can, and will, be redeemed by Social Security to make the needed payments to retirees. Basically, the cash flow hot potato will be passed to the Treasury. A: The reason we diversify our assets is that everything doesn’t go up, or down, at the same time. That’s why we should own cash, domestic bonds, domestic stocks, international stocks, international bonds and REITs. Those are all recognized asset classes. Their proportions can be mixed, so you can get a modest return with very little risk or a higher return with substantial risk. That’s what investing is about. Unless you have reason to believe that you really shouldn’t have real estate in your portfolio, a down year is no reason to sell. Indeed, if you want to keep your portfolio balanced, it is often a reason to buy more. If the fund’s performance trails its competitive peers, however, you should think about a replacement fund. Q: If you were four years from retirement, as I am, where would you allocate your monies? We have about $270,000 saved in an IRA. Would you buy any gold? – N.B. A: I wouldn’t buy gold except as insurance against chaos and, if I was worried about chaos, I’d buy a gun and lots of bullets before I bought gold. As long as we continue to have baby showers and PTA meetings in America, we need to focus our investments on earning assets – stocks, bonds, cash and real estate. One simple portfolio is what I call the Margarita Portfolio, a mixture of one-third domestic stocks, one-third international stocks and one-third Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities. It can be done very inexpensively with low-cost index funds or exchange- traded funds. This portfolio gives you diversification. It also gives you some protection against inflation and/or a falling dollar with the TIPS and international equities. Questions about personal finance and investments may be sent by e-mail to [email protected] or by fax to 505-424-0938.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more