London: a city in peril, or in clover?

Last week our architecture critic wrote about how high residential land values are destroying the soul of London. His piece provoked a large response…

Well, that touched a nerve. When I wrote last Sunday that London is eating itself, it provoked more than 1,100 comments, and a comparable response on Twitter. The overwhelming view was that there was something in the thesis, that an important part of London’s being is threatened by the forces of residential land values. “London is now a peculiar offshore financial centre that turns out to be onshore…” was one paraphrase. “Market forces are killing London,” was another.

Some reported on places that didn’t get mentioned in the article, where similar squeezes are going on – Earl’s Court, Robin Hood Gardens in east London. There were some voices from New York, where the story sounds familiar: this “essay about the black hole of superwealth of London should serve as a caution for NYC”.

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Tod’s Releases Limited Edition Metallic Leather Sandals

Italian leather goods label Tod’s has unveiled two new sandal styles for the summer. Each rendition features a metallic two-tone leather make-up in either bronze and black or blue and copper, with a contrasting black footbed and studded white outsole. The luxurious thong sandals are available as a limited edition online exclusive.

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BUY NOW / $495

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Manchester United Transfer News: Latest Asmir Begovic, Hugo Lloris Rumours

Manchester United could muscle in on Chelsea’s pursuit of Stoke City goalkeeper Asmir Begovic, according to reports.

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As noted by Sami Mokbel of the MailOnline, Blues boss Jose Mourinho had previously cited the Bosnia and Herzegovina international as the man to replace Petr Cech in his squad. But apparently Chelsea have “concerns” that the Red Devils will hijack a potential move if David De Gea joins Real Madrid.

The piece goes on to say that Mourinho “wants a deal wrapped up as soon as possible” to prevent a bidding war for the player.

Whether Begovic goes to Chelsea or United, they’d be getting one of the Premier League’s most improved goalkeepers. The 28-year-old has an abundance of qualities which set him aside from the average man between the sticks, tackling all of his duties with purpose and assurance.

As we can see here courtesy of WhoScored.com, he’s one of the best out-and-out shot-stoppers in the division too:

Mokbel wrote that Begovic hasn’t made his mind up on a move to Chelsea yet and that’s understandable. After all, does he possess enough quality to oust the immaculate Thibaut Courtois? Or in 12 months will we be pointing to another Blues goalkeeper too talented to be sat on the bench?

Former Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp thinks the choice is a simple one for Begovic:

If De Gea does go, United will have a massive void to fill at the base of their team. Victor Valdes may have once been capable of doing so, but the former Barcelona man remains something of an unknown quantity after his significant injury layoffs. Begovic, meanwhile, is of proven Premier League quality.

Should the Red Devils swoop and offer the Bosnian the chance to become the main man between the sticks, then it’s a chance he would surely jump at. But for United, although Begovic is a very capable ‘keeper, you suspect a world-class talent will be chased in their attempts to fill the gap that’d be left by the Spaniard’s potential departure.


United a Sideways Step for Lloris, Says Raymond Domenech

One player who fits into that elite category is Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris, who has previously been touted as a potential option for the Red Devils, per Declan Warrington of the MailOnline.

But as noted in the aforementioned piece, former France boss Raymond Domenech, who gave the ex-Lyon man his international debut, doesn’t think the Red Devils are big enough for Lloris and another giant of the English game should look to capture him:

I have no decision to take for him, but in my opinion he has to play in Chelsea, Arsenal, or Manchester City, to play in the European Cup

Tottenham is a big club – it is not the biggest. Manchester United qualified for the Champions League, but I can’t see really the difference with Tottenham.

For me, it’s Chelsea, Arsenal, or Manchester City. Because I think Manchester United is no more a big club, in England, for me. I think like that. I think Arsenal will be every time a big club, Chelsea also – City is becoming a big club – but I think United is with Tottenham, with the other clubs. Not one of the biggest clubs, so there’s no difference.

While there are plenty who would dispute Domenech’s claim that the Red Devils are no longer a “big club,” Lloris is definitely a goalkeeper capable of playing at the very highest level.

Since moving to Spurs Lloris has established himself as one of the best players in the division. He possesses refined shot-stopping instincts, composure in tough situations and when coming off his line, the Frenchman has been razor sharp to shut opposition forwards down.

Here’s how he compared with De Gea late on last season, per Squawka Football:

If United are chasing a goalkeeper capable of seamlessly filling the void De Gea would potentially leave, there are few better suited than the Frenchman. He knows what is required to thrive in the abrasive landscape of English football and although Spurs are building a bright young side, regardless of what Domenech may think, United command a superior gravitas.

The Londoners are notoriously tough negotiators and the Red Devils would surely have to put together a hugely lucrative package if they were to land Lloris. But if Madrid come calling for United’s No. 1, it’d be no surprise if Van Gaal went immediately on the hunt for Tottenham’s.

10 Summer Transfers of the Past 10 Years Arsenal Fans Wish Had Not Happened

The summer transfer window is ostensibly an exciting time, but there are still moments of pain along the journey.

In this piece, we reflect on 10 transfer deals of the past decade that have given Arsenal fans some cause for regret. Join us, as we count down through a list of deals Gunners supporters wish had never gone through.

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Greece votes in referendum with future in euro in doubt

A woman holds the flag of Greece at the 'Greek solidarity festival' in Trafalgar Square, LondonBy Deepa Babington and George Georgiopoulos ATHENS (Reuters) – Greece voted on Sunday on whether to accept more austerity in exchange for international aid, in a high-stakes referendum likely to determine whether it leaves the euro-currency area after seven years of economic pain. Staged against a backdrop of shuttered banks and threats of financial apocalypse, the vote looked too close to call and may not produce the clear mandate for negotiations that Athens’ creditors seek. Greeks are split on whether to accept an offer by creditors that Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras calls a "humiliation" and is urging people to reject.


Letting The Freedom Of Truth Uncover The Value Of Life

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