Manuel Neuer Vows to Show Lionel Messi ‘Who’s Boss’ in Champions League

A big Champions League semi-final clash against Lionel Messi is enough to bring any goalkeeper out in a sweat, but not Manuel Neuer.

The Bayern Munich stopper said he was ready for the Barcelona forward on Wednesday night with some bullish words. 

Neuer said he will show Messi “who’s boss” and mentioned that having such an attitude worked out pretty well for him during the World Cup. 

He told L’Equipe, as per Goal.com

I have a lot of respect for Messi and for everything that he has achieved. He is very humble.

But it’s crucial to show authority when we meet on the pitch and show him who’s boss. I did the same in the World Cup final and this worked out pretty well.

We will be looking to do the same on Wednesday night. It is vital to obtain a position of dominance and instil respect.

Bayern take on Barca at the Camp Nou on Wednesday with the return leg in Munich six days later.

[Goal.com]

An in-Depth Look at Miami Dolphins’ Most Intriguing Selection, Tony Lippett

It was the fifth round, the 156th overall pick in the NFL draft and the final pick of the draft for the Miami Dolphins

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Much like the first pick, the last pick was spent on a wide receiver. Not just any wide receiver, but the Big 10’s Receiver of the Year, Michigan State’s Tony Lippett

If you were confused as to why Miami spent their last pick on a receiver in the ensuing seconds and minutes after the pick, you weren’t alone. Even after releasing Brian Hartline and Brandon Gibson, then trading Mike Wallace, the Dolphins were stacked at the position.

This is thanks to top pick DeVante Parker, second-year player Jarvis Landry, the acquisition of Kenny Stills from New Orleans for Dannell Ellerbe and a third-round pick, the signing of Greg Jennings and the little-used Rishard Matthews. 

So why go receiver? As we would later find out, they didn’t, they instead addressed a much more pressing need: defensive back. 

That is the position that Lippett is expected to play in 2015 and beyond for Miami, and it’s a position he actually knows well. 

Let’s go back to the beginning with the former Spartan: Lippett was born July 2, 1992 in Detriot, MI, and was a 3-star recruit in high school. While his high school career saw him play as a dual-threat quarterback, he would commit to Michigan State in East Lansing and play wide receiver. 

Only it wasn’t as cut and dry as him coming on campus and becoming a wide receiver. He would redshirt his freshman year in 2010, and in 2011 he made five starts at cornerback, recording 18 tackles, 0.5 for a loss and deflecting five passes. 

It was a nice start for Lippett, who was on his way to becoming a player that Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio called “one of the greatest players in Michigan State history.” 

Lippett‘s redshirt sophomore season saw him play all 13 games at wide receiver, and in 2013 he’d do the same. 

He’d be back at cornerback in 2014, a position that he had not played in more than two seasons. Despite the lay off, he recorded four tackles and four pass deflections in his three games starting at cornerback against Rutgers, Penn State and Baylor. 

He even blocked a punt against Baylor in the Cotton Bowl, a game where he played on special teams as well. 

While doing all this, he still led the Big 10 in receiving en route to winning the conference’s receiver of the year award. 

Lippett being able to play on both sides of the ball, as well as his 6’2″, 192-pound size earned him comparisons to Richard Sherman on draft day, but at Michigan State’s pro day, his collegiate head coach offered another comparison to him: former Carolina Panther Chris Gamble, who Dantonio coached while he was an assistant at Ohio State. 

He’s not going to get beat deep because he’s got two or three inches on most people, very long arms, and he’s got great deep ball judgment. I would equate that with Darqueze [Dennard] and the only other guy, because he was a wideout, was maybe Chris Gamble. He [Lippett] has that kind of size and that kind of ball awareness.

That awareness comes through no matter what side of the ball you see Lippett play on. You won’t find a lot of film online of him playing cornerback, but his ball skills come out as you watch him play receiver. 

At first, Lippett wasn’t too crazy about playing cornerback, but as he explained to MLive.com’s Kyle Austin, he’s warmed up to the idea: “I wasn’t really for playing corner right off the bat, but as process went on, I was more open. I started to watch Richard Sherman film, and then I watched it more, numerous times.”

He also added, “I look forward to the opportunity of showing the team what I can do as a corner,” and Dolphins fans are looking forward to seeing what he can do. 

 

Statistics provided by sports-reference.com/cfb unless otherwise noted. 

Tiny cellular bubbles enable delivery of Parkinson’s drugs straight to the brain

Exosomes (shown in red) deliver catalase to protect neurons (shown in black) from the effects of Parkinson’s disease.

A natural enzyme called catalase may prove hugely significant in treating neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s. These extremely potent antioxidants can tackle neuron-killing inflammation with an effectiveness unparalleled by small molecule drugs. But there’s a problem, they are big. So big that getting them through the blood-brain barrier for delivery straight to the brain is nearly impossible. But researchers have now discovered that loading them into tiny, naturally occurring bubbles allows them to sneak past the brain’s defenses, pointing to the possibility of improved treatments for such conditions.

.. Continue Reading Tiny cellular bubbles enable delivery of Parkinson’s drugs straight to the brain

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South Africa’s rand largely flat, bonds extend losses

Photo illustration of South African bank notes displayed next to the American dollar notes in JohannesburgSouth Africa's rand was stable against the dollar early on Tuesday and was expected trade in a narrow range for most of the session given a dearth of market moving data. Government bonds extended recent gains, pushing yields to their highest in nearly 2 weeks, in line with U.S. Treasuries after higher than expected factory data stoked rate hike expectations in the world's largest economy. "The rand will continue trading in a narrow range as participants wait on the sidelines ahead of the Germany factory order release on Thursday and the all-important U.S. employment report on Friday," Barclays Africa said in a note. "A move above 8.13 percent could cause another bout of price weakness and the medium term objective of 8.5 percent could become a reality sooner rather than later," Standard Bank trader Warrick Butler said.


Professional hiring, led by engineering, up 20% despite slowdown in economic growth

Professional hiring up 20% despite slowdown in economic growth

• Permanent vacancies increase 20% year-on-year
• Engineering steams ahead as sector is hailed as key driver for growth
• Contract vacancies rise by 9% year-on-year

• Average salaries climb, increasing by 1.9%

Professional recruitment firms now have 20% more vacancies on their books than this time last year according to new survey data from the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo). This annual increase has been recorded despite reports that UK economic growth slowed to 0.3% in the three months to March 2015. APSCo’s data coincides with the latest ONS figures which show that the number of people in work has increased by 248,000 in the three months to February, driving UK employment to a record-high of 31.05 million.

Engineering steams ahead as sector is hailed as key driver for growth

The latest data from APSCo reveals that year-on-year growth in the professional staffing market continues to climb across all of the trade association’s core sector groups. Permanent vacancies across finance & accounting, IT, engineering and media & marketing are all up year-on-year (13%, 20%, 20% and 7% respectively).

The rapid growth of the engineering sector, which APSCo has reported in recent months, is in keeping with a recent report from accountancy firm Nixon Williams, which found that the number of engineering jobs available in the UK has increased by almost 18% over the past year with 159,000 employees currently working in the sector. This is perhaps unsurprising when, according to a separate report, the sector delivers £280 billion in added value to the UK economy each year.

Average salaries continue to climb

APSCo’s figures also reveal that median salaries across all professional sectors continue to climb steadily, increasing by 1.9% year-on-year. This figure is characterised by notable fluctuations in terms of sector, with engineering and finance, for example, recording uplifts of 6.3% and 3.1% respectively. This rise in remuneration is mirrored by statistics from the ONS which reported that average earnings grew at an annual rate of 1.7% in the three months to February 2015.

Ann Swain, Chief Executive of APSCo comments:

“Behind the headline figures that the UK’s growth rate halved to 0.3% in first quarter of 2015, it is worth remembering that, according to official figures, the economy remains 2.4% larger than the same period last year. This healthier economy is reflected in the consistent growth of the professional jobs market, and greater stability post-election should further boost job creation across the professional sectors. With inflation currently at 0%, wages are growing more rapidly in real terms than the raw data suggests. This is a further positive indicator of economic confidence.”

Contract vacancies remain resilient

Temporary and contract vacancies remain strong across the professional staffing market with opportunities up by 9% across the board year-on-year. Vacancies across finance & accounting and media & marketing are particularly strong (increasing by 10% and 9% respectively). These figures coincide with the launch of the Government’s small business manifesto, which promises a review into the challenges that self-employed professionals face, including accessing maternity pay and building pensions.

Swain continues;
“Government initiatives to encourage an entrepreneurial approach to employment have had a significant impact on attitudes towards contracting, with many professionals now taking a more flexible outlook to work. This is reflected in the fact that 15% of the workforce is now self-employed. A rise in contract vacancy numbers no longer represents weak permanent employment figures, working on a flexible basis is a lifestyle choice that many professionals choose.”

Ends

Notes to editors:

Professional Recruitment Trends is the only monthly publication providing original data and analysis on the professional staffing market. It is produced jointly by APSCo and Staffing Industry Analysts.

APSCo is the membership body that is dedicated to representing professional recruitment in the UK. It was formed to give all firms involved in the recruitment of professional talent who have a commitment to excellence, the specialist support and distinctive voice they need to be successful. It gives candidates and employers a trusted badge of quality whilst providing member firms with an innovative range of services designed for them by recruitment experts. These services, combined with its growing international profile, commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility and opportunities for professional networking give APSCo members a unique opportunity to develop their businesses and gain competitive advantage (http://www.apsco.org).

Staffing Industry Analysts is the premier advisory service about the contingent workforce. Known for its independent and objective insights, the company’s proprietary research, award winning content, data, support tools, publications, and executive conferences provide a competitive edge to decision-makers who supply and buy temporary staffing.

For more information, contact BlueSky PR on 01582 790 700 (www.bluesky-pr.com)

       

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Obama tells Letterman: we must let young people of colour know that their lives matter – video

The US president, Barack Obama, has spoken about the Baltimore riots on the Late Show with David Letterman, saying the government must address pockets of poverty ‘all across this country’. Obama said it was important to ‘send a message to young people of colour’ that the government will invest in them before the ‘crisis’ happens, acknowledging that police are ‘put in a really tough spot’ Continue reading…







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Breaking Down Aaron Ramsey’s Performance in Arsenal’s Game vs. Hull City

Technically, Aaron Ramsey was playing out of position in Arsenal’s Premier League win over Hull City. It didn’t show, as the Wales international scored a goal to cap an excellent 67-minute display. 

Since coming back in to the team, Ramsey has been forced to play wide on the right-hand side of Arsenal’s midfield. The unusual deployment is necessitated by the form of Santi Cazorla and Mesut Ozil in the middle of the park. Arsene Wenger seems to view that pair as the creative hub of the team, and everyone else has to be accommodated around them.

Playing wide is not entirely unfamiliar to Ramsey, but it’s something he hasn’t enjoyed in the past. His best performances have almost all come as a central midfielder, and it was playing in that role that earned him the title of Arsenal’s Player of the Year last season.

His natural inclination is to drive infield and that can occasionally prove problematic. When Arsenal came up against Reading’s packed defence in the FA Cup semi-final, they looked too narrow on that right flank. Mathieu Debuchy was playing behind Ramsey at full-back, and having just returned from injury, he seemed to lack the stamina required to provide an overlap. 

Against Hull, there were no such problems. The presence of Hector Bellerin at right-back meant Arsenal always had someone willing to occupy the touchline on that side. As a consequence, Ramsey flourished. 

His heat map shows how often he drifted infield to pick up possession in the centre:

However, a look at Bellerin’s areas of involvement demonstrate the way he utilises the space Ramsey avoids:

The advantage of having Ramsey shift in to the centre is that he is able to capitalise on his movement and anticipation to offer a persistent goal threat. On three occasions, he burst in to the penalty area to get off a shot at goal.

In the first half, he was picked out by Santi Cazorla before executing a wonderful turn and firing a deflected shot beyond Steve Harper. Ramsey has now scored four times in his last eight appearances. The goalscoring knack that accompanied his outstanding form of last year is beginning to return. In the second half, he almost added another but a toe-poked effort from just inside the box rolled agonisingly wide.

There was more to Ramsey’s game than the goal. He also showed real consistency in his passing, finding the target on 89 percent of occasions—higher than his season average of 85 percent. 

Ramsey might be more comfortable in the middle but it’s clear he’s capable of doing a very effective job for Arsenal out wide.

In some respects, his performances there are reminiscent of Freddie Ljungberg’s. Ljungberg regarded himself as a central player, but Arsene Wenger recognised that by playing him wide the Swede could use his brilliant movement to evade markers in the centre. The result was an excellent partnership between Dennis Bergkamp, the arch-creator, and Ljungberg the predator. 

Ramsey has the potential to do a similar job for Arsenal, with Mesut Ozil and Cazorla the possible successors to Bergkamp’s visionary role. Ramsey on the right is something we may be seeing more of in future.

 

All stats via Squawka

James McNicholas is Bleacher Report’s lead Arsenal correspondent and is following the club from a London base throughout the 2014-15 season. Follow him on Twitter here.

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