Tag Archives: move

Liverpool eyeing summer move for £100 million forward, Chelsea and Tottenham also in the running

Liverpool eyeing summer move for £100 million forward, Chelsea and Tottenham also in the running – originally posted on Sportslens.com

Liverpool have joined the race to sign Bayer Leverkusen winger Leon Bailey.

Leverkusen have slapped a £100 million price tag on the 20-year-old who is being monitored by numerous Premier League clubs.

Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur have all regularly watched Bailey, but Liverpool are eager to add the Jamaican to their squad.

The Reds have been strongly linked with Monaco star Thomas Lemar, but manager Jurgen Klopp believes the forward will head elsewhere at the end of the season.

Bailey made his Belgian Pro League debut for Genk in August 2015 in a 3–1 away defeat against Sint-Truiden.

He joined Leverkusen in the 2016/2017 winter transfer window for a fee of €20 million, after interest from United and Chelsea.

Bailey has scored 10 goals in 22 appearances for Leverkusen this season, but he has already made it clear he wants to play in the Premier League.

“Of course I have a dream club, but I will not tell,” Bailey has said previously.

“Basically, England was and still is my dream. And if I keep working hard, I’m sure it will work someday.

“The change to Bayer was just the right step for my development.”

From Sportslens.com – Football News | Football Blog

Man City agree fee for combative midfielder, move will be completed in summer

Man City agree fee for combative midfielder, move will be completed in summer – originally posted on Sportslens.com

Manchester City have agreed on a deal to sign the Brazilian midfielder Fred from Shakhtar Donetsk.

According to Goal, both clubs have agreed on a fee of £44.5 million and the player will complete his transfer at the end of this season.

Nothing has been signed yet, but both parties have agreed to the terms of the transfer.

Apparently, Fred was keen on the move and the former Arsenal midfielder Gilberto Silva helped broker the deal.

City tried to sign the box-to-box midfielder back in January but Shakhtar were not prepared to lose him back then. The Premier League giants went on to sign Aymeric Laporte by paying his £57m buy-out clause last month.

They were linked with a move for the Leicester City winger Riyad Mahrez as well but the Foxes refused to sell the Algerian. Mahrez has been on strike ever since.

Fred is likely to partner Fernandinho at the heat of Manchester City’s midfield next season. He will bring more drive and power to Guardiola’s midfield.

Guardiola must now look to improve his left-back options as well. City need to find a top quality backup for Benjamin Mendy.

From Sportslens.com – Football News | Football Blog

Arsene Wenger defends Alexis Sanchez over Man United move

Full commitment

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has been speaking about Alexis Sanchez this week and especially his final few months at the Gunners.

Some chose to question the players commitment before the move to Manchester United, with his head having been turned.

The contract rebel had decided to move on and wanted to move in January but his move to Manchester City fell through.

Thankfully for him, Man United came in and offered him an extortionate wage to sign for them.

The player played several matches in the lead up to the move and Arsene Wenger moved quickly to defend him over those few matches.

That is because the French boss has admitted that he does everything to win when he is on the pitch.

“Sanchez, for him it was very difficult because as soon as he had a game that was average he was questioned about his commitment and that is not his case,” Wenger told BT Sport, cited by the Mirror. 

“When he is on the football pitch he wants to win. But it was a bit unfair to him I think.

“I don’t know [if Sanchez was unsettling the rest of the squad], our results in the future will show that.

“What was a bit unfair to Sanchez: he was questioned every time. Is he committed or not committed?

“There was always a debate and then, of course, it starts to unsettle a little bit but I never questioned his commitment but it was a difficult situation.”

Henrikh Mkhitaryan makes big Arsenal admission after Man Utd failure

The player who went in the other direction, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, has also been speaking about his move today.

The Armenian was part of the deal that saw Alexis Sanchez join Manchester United, while he went to Arsenal.

Now, the player has made an admission on his Arsenal hopes.

Click here to find out what he had to say. 

Jill Zarin Says She's Contemplating a Move to Florida in Wake of Husband Bobby's Death

Jill Zarin is contemplating a move from the Big Apple to the Sunshine State.

In the wake of her beloved husband Bobby’s death last month, the Real Housewives of New York City alum is considering a change of pace and scenery.

“I am thinking about it,” Jill, 54, tells PEOPLE about relocating to Florida, where she has an apartment in Miami and a house in Boca Raton.

“I need some time alone without the pressure of a fast pace right now. I need to slow down and follow my heart. That’s what Bobby would want for me,” she shares. “Playing tennis and golf, being with my parents and very close friends is what brings me the most happiness right now. One day at a time.”

Adds Jill, “It’s hard for me to be alone right now and I need to be with close friends and family.”

After a years-long battle with thyroid cancer (he was first diagnosed in 2009), Bobby died at the age of 71 in January. “With the heaviest of hearts, we are devastated to share the news that our beloved Bobby Zarin passed away peacefully today surrounded by family after a courageous battle with cancer,” the family said in a statement. “There are no words to describe how heartbroken we are. Thank you, everyone for all your love, and support during this difficult time.”

Since losing her loving spouse, to whom she was married for 17 years, Jill says she’s been “trying to keep busy to keep her mind off losing Bobby.”

Recently, Jill visited London, England, where her daughter, Ally, is studying, and then flew onto northern Africa, where she traveled with numerous friends, including RHONY star Ramona Singer.

“I’m so lucky. My friend Nurit wouldn’t take no for an answer and ‘kidnapped’ me,” she says about her trip to Morocco. “When she found out I was taking JetSmarter to London, she sent me a ticket to come to Morocco with my girlfriends from N.Y.C. The timing was perfect.”

Speaking with PEOPLE after Bobby’s death, Jill said, “We were soulmates. Beyond. We could complete each other’s sentences. Bobby was always right.”

Now, “I don’t know what I’m going to do without him because he always made sure I didn’t forget anything,” she said. “He would always close the cabinets or the refrigerator … he always finished everything I started.”

Home Town's Ben and Erin Napier Attempt to Move an Entire House in Nail-Biting Video

Now this is going the extra mile.

On Monday’s episode of their hit HGTV show Home Town, Ben and Erin Napier take their dedication to historical preservation to new heights for fellow Laurel, Mississippi, natives Robyn and Cassidy.

The young couple’s dream home is Robyn’s great-grandmother’s property. They love the house, but not the location. So they ask the decorator-carpenter duo to physically move it from one plot of land to another in addition to restoring the home— a trick the Napiers aren’t too sure about.

RELATED: HGTV Star Erin Napier Makes a Passionate Plea to Call Out Cyber Bullies: ‘Cruelty Isn’t Brave’

“What could go wrong with moving the house? A lot,” Ben says in the exclusive clip above, citing broken windows and destroyed floors as a few of the potential problems.

With a team of pros on their side, they decide it’s worth the risk. (See how they fair in the clip above.)

WATCH THIS: The Hosts of HGTV’s “Home Town” Talk Fame, Family and What Makes Small Town America Great

 

The Napiers, who just welcomed their first child — a daughter named Helen — in January, are known for incorporating personal touches into the historic houses they renovate. Erin designs custom artwork, while Ben creates handmade furniture or accent pieces..

“There’s always going to be details in the house that we’re really conscious . . . are meaningful to those families and how they live,” Ben tells PEOPLE.

Erin adds, “Writing down people’s stories and the books and the music and the movies and the moments in their lives that have impacted them the most tells a lot about the kind of home they want to live in.”

RELATED: Drew Scott and Fiancee Linda Phan Embark on a ‘Romantic’ Trip to Rome Ahead of Spring Wedding

Tune in to Home Town Monday at 9:00 p.m. EST on HGTV for the full episode.

MOVE OVER, CURLING: K-pop is the best event at the Winter Olympics

K-pop is the dominant force in South Korean pop music. It has swept much of Asia off its feet, in the sort of grand, romantic gesture its stars are inclined to sing about. K-pop is ecstatically, unapologetically, exclamation-pointed pop music, a glittery explosion of color and style. And you can expect to take in plenty of it during the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.

K-pop stars are slated to perform and appear throughout the Games, and the closing ceremonies will showcase “performances by CL, who got her start in the essential girl group 2NE1, and the boy band EXO,” the New York Times reports.

This gives you more than two weeks to get up to speed on all things K-pop, from the North Korean girl group that sings state-sponsored propaganda to the South Korean stars whose songs are starting to win over American listeners and are sometimes blasted over the DMZ to taunt their northern neighbors with the sweet, sweet sound of creative freedom.

“Just complete glam all the way.”

K-Pop is big, bright, luxurious, exciting. All-caps everything. As Jenny Town, the assistant director of the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, explained, “K-pop is just really known for being very upbeat, but also glamorous… and it’s very catchy.”

Watch some of the videos and you’ll see what she means: It’s as infectious as Max Martin’s finest earworms, as sparkly and rainbow-brite as Kesha’s early work or Carly Rae Jepson circa “Call Me Maybe.” The choreography is precise, the surfaces all gleam. It is the sound of a thousand Pixy Stix bursting into song simultaneously.

K-pop is as just as much about aesthetics as it is about the songs themselves. “The girls are really pretty, the boys are really pretty,” Town said. “It’s not just a listening experience. It is a full experience, a full-senses experience.” Some of these groups have as many as 12 members, which “means you have really great dances and videos, and you have a lot to work with,” Town said. “They’re really known a lot for their choreography.”

Town sums K-pop’s ethos up like so: “Just complete glam all the way.”

In South Korea, K-pop’s stars are everywhere. “Everyone is trying to dress like them and look like them. You have all the k-pop stars that are on the Soju bottles, even,” Town said. “It’s huge. They’re idols in South Korea.” The New Yorker described this sensation in Seoul: “You can feel K-pop all around you. There is the constant presence of the idols on billboards and in display ads. Life-size cutouts of idols greet you at the entrances of the big department stores. On the streets and in the subways you see echoes of the idols’ faces.”

The first K-pop hit to make its way to the United States was PSY’s “Gangham Style,” which blew up in the United States back in 2012 with a video that, to date, has 3 billion views on YouTube.

The music “is huge in South Korea, and in southeast Asia — Asia in general,” Town said. The region is experiencing what they call hallyu, the “Korean wave,” a sweep of Korean cultural that has been spreading to China and central Asia for a decade now. And some of K-pop’s biggest acts have managed to break through in the U.S. already: In 2016, boy band BTS’s second full-length album, Wings, debuted at no. 26 on the Billboard Hot 200 chart.

It was the best week ever for a K-pop album and made BTS the first K-pop group to land in the Billboard Hot 200 three times. Last year, they became the first Korean act to win a Billboard Music Award, taking home Top Social Artist over fellow nominees Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Ariana Grande and Shawn Mendes.

American pop music tends to shade even its brightest hits with some sorrow: the ache of unrequited love, the hunger to belong, your standard issue stateside teen troubles. But K-pop is “not so angsty,” Town said. No anti-social pessimists mope in the corner of parties they wish they could leave; no one is told, flippantly, to go and love themselves. Even the American pop of the 1990s and early 2000s was laced with pain that K-pop takes pains to ignore. Hearts are not torn up, babies are not hit even one more time, no one makes things so complicated.

Over the past several years, though, the genre has gotten a more sophisticated, and K-pop bands have ventured into darker territory with their lyrics. The results are more in the vein of Western pop music, where one of the only things that might strike the American ear as unfamiliar is the language in which the songs are performed.

BTS is representative of that subject-matter shift. As Billboard reported:

Since their debut, BTS has stood out in the K-pop scene for tackling social and society issues in their music. Wings takes that dedication a step further by delving into the more complex issues in their young-adult lives including tackling mental health (see the sample-heavy “Am I Wrong”), taking digs at the Korean-pop idol scene (on the aggressive “2! 3!”), and even deliver a female-empowerment anthem (“21st Century Girls”), all over bombastic, hard-hitting hip-hop-heavy dance beats.

Girls’ Generation is another of K-pop’s major players. They got the big New Yorker profile treatment in 2012, as they were recording their debut American album with Interscope. The year before, the nine-member group performed at Madison Square Garden and earned “rave reviews from both critics and press worldwide” for their performance. Billboard declared “the girl group can now rightfully be named one of the international representatives of K-Pop.”

K-propaganda in North Korea

North Korea has its own K-pop offerings, which are, as you might expect, “very propaganda-oriented,” said Town. Its big pop band is the girl group Moranbong.

Since Moranbong is “a state-sponsored initiative,” the girls in the group are cast. Like Simon Cowells of the state, the North Korean government “make[s] sure that the girls are very pretty and talented, and they sort of control the content of what the girls do and the types of shows that they do. It’s all very controlled and choreographed.”

Town was quick to add that “it’s not like [North and South Korean K-pop] are competing against each other. They serve very different purposes… Most South Koreans have never seen a North Korean K-pop performance. And if they have, they watched it on YouTube like everyone else.”

Moranbong mainly sings “nationalistic songs,” Town said, with the message generally being “whatever good things are happening is because it’s the grace of the leader.”

For example, consider the lyrics from “We Will Climb to the Mount Paektu“:

We Will Climb to the Mount Paektu
It’s a place that calls prosperity and wonders to this land
And leads heroic Korea to the road of victory.

The idea of a girl group that can only sing jingoistic anthems seems unsettling — imagine Taylor Swift or Beyoncé releasing concept albums about the glory of the Trump administration — but, on a lyrical level, some Moranbong songs are not that far off from the uber-patriotic songs produced by American country artists in the wake of the September 11 attacks. Take Toby Keith’s “American Soldier”:

I’m an American soldier, an American
Beside my brothers and my sisters
I will proudly take a stand
When liberty’s in jeopardy…

Though North Korean music isn’t consumed much outside of the country’s borders, save for the occasional YouTube video, groups like Moranbong have “adapted to the times” a bit in their styling and presentation, Town said.

“As North Korea becomes a little bit more sophisticated and educated about the world, and as they get exposed to more and more outside influences, the Morabong band as also evolved. They’re a little bit more glamorous than they were in the past [and] they’re known for being a little bit more Western style.”

Launching a charm offensive

As any teenager who has attempted to drive a parent slowly insane by blasting music adults can’t stand knows, pop music can be weaponized.

Two years ago, South Korea revved up the wall of loudspeakers lining its 151-mile border with North Korea and blared propaganda, a response to a North Korean nuclear test. One part of the broadcast: K-pop.

The song selections this time around include a traditional Korean song, “Living 100 Years,” K-pop hits like “Bang Bang Bang” by Big Bang, and girl group GFriend’s take on “Me Gustas Tu.”

The K-pop is intended to show North Korea that the world has modernized, the Defense Ministry says.

As NPR reported at the time, the South Korean government considers the broadcasts to be “an effective tool in psychological warfare.” As South Korean President Park Geun-hye put it at a news conference, “Truth is the most powerful weapon toward a totalitarian regime.”

Town is not convinced this strategy is particularly effective; her sense is that the music is more annoying than anything else. “There’s a lot of efforts to get information into North Korea, and a lot of that content has been K-dramas and K-pop, geared toward showing the North Koreans what life is like in South Korea. Unfortunately, it’s not a very realistic picture! Because K-pop and K-dramas are over-the-top and super glamorous, and that’s not what everyday life is.” In her view, “It’s a little bit of a misperception and it’s overplayed.”

“If you’re a North Korean and you’re watching K-dramas, you’re going to be entertained. You might be a little bit curious. But it’s not going to change your way of life or thinking, and it doesn’t equip you or empower you to do anything.”

When you can (and can’t) see K-pop at the Olympics

At Friday’s opening ceremonies, K-pop will reportedly have a “limited presence.”

Which means that on top of everything else — icy relations between Vice President Mike Pence and figure skater Adam Rippon, the first openly gay athlete to represent the U.S. at the Winter Olympic Games; the looming threat of our collective impending deaths in a nuclear holocaust; this gross flu season — on Friday night, Americans will turn on our televisions for one of the only unifying events left in this increasingly isolating world to find an opening ceremonies all but devoid of K-pop.

But as the Games go on, expect some K-pop performances and appearances sprinkled throughout, including a reunion of the boy band 2PM.

And as CNN reports, “A selection of K-pop stars, including girl groups AOA and Girl’s Day, along with Taeyang, from the mega-popular boy band Big Bang, have been made honorary Olympic ambassadors,” which means they will almost certainly be spotted at official Olympic events over the course of the Games.


Deal close: Bad news for Arsenal as €20.2m forward nears Inter Milan move

Deal close: Bad news for Arsenal as €20.2m forward nears Inter Milan move – originally posted on Sportslens.com

Arsenal have been dealt a blow with Racing Club striker Lautaro Martinez closing in on a move to Inter Milan.

The 20-year-old is reportedly on his way to the San Siro for €20.2m in the summer.

Martinez has made more than 30 appearances in all competitions for Racing, scoring 13 goals. He’s netted seven goals in 11 games for Argentina u20s too. Arsenal were in the running to sign him, but Inter Milan have won the race for his signature.

The South American centre-forward is believed to have agreed a five-year-deal and admitted he’s held talks with Inter Milan sporting director Piero Ausilio and former striker Diego Milito.

“I met Ausilio and he told me about Inter. He told me things that I’d already heard from [former Inter Milan strike Diego] Milito,” Martinez told Ole, who say Atlético Madrid, AS Monaco, Real Madrid and Torino were also keen on the 20-year-old.

He added: “My future? I’m happy to stay at Racing for now. Negotiations between the two clubs are for my agent. I’m definitely staying here until June, so I can’t afford to think of anything else.”

While a blow for Arsenal, manager Arsene Wenger might not be too disappointed given they’ve strengthened their attack heavily in the January transfer window – Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang signed from Borussia Dortmund and Henrik Mkhitaryan made the switch from Manchester United.

Arsenal also have Alexandre Lacazette, Danny Welbeck and Eddie Nketiah who are capable of playing up front this season, so the Gunners aren’t short of options in the final third. There was a lot of competition to land Martinez, but Wenger will now have to cast his eye on other targets.

Stats from Transfermarkt.

From Sportslens.com – Football News | Football Blog

Done deal: Ex-Tottenham and Liverpool defender makes shock move

Done deal: Ex-Tottenham and Liverpool defender makes shock move – originally posted on Sportslens.com

Former Tottenham Hotspur defender Steven Caulker has joined Dundee on an 18-month deal, the Scottish Premiership club have confirmed. The 26-year-old left Queens Park Rangers in December by mutual consent,  having made 54 appearances for the Londoners.

The news comes as a shock given he’s spent his entire playing career in England, the majority of which has been in the Premier League and Championship, but Dundee convinced him to go to Scotland until the summer of 2019.

Caulker will wear the number 4 shirt at Dundee and trained with his new teammates today. The centre-back will bring a wealth of experience to Dens Park, having played for Tottenham, Yeovil, Bristol City, Swansea City, Cardiff City, QPR, Southampton and Liverpool, while being an England international.

He’s had his troubles with mental illness, gambling and drinking which hampered his playing career, but his move to Dundee could be provide a fresh start. Caulker could make his debut for the Premiership outfit against Motherwell in Saturday’s Scottish Cup fifth-round clash.

The defender started out at Tottenham, making 29 appearances in all competitions, and he’s led a nomadic career ever since. Caulker had a big opportunity to join Liverpool on a permanent deal after a shock loan move in 2016, but he made just four appearances for the Merseysiders before leaving.

Stats from Transfermarkt.

From Sportslens.com – Football News | Football Blog

Done deal: Ex-Crystal Palace and Watford midfielder completes Championship move

Done deal: Ex-Crystal Palace and Watford midfielder completes Championship move – originally posted on Sportslens.com

Aitor Karanka’s Nottingham Forest have confirmed the signing of Ben Watson on a two-and-a-half-year deal, after leaving Watford by mutual consent at the end of January.

The former Crystal Palace, Wigan Athletic, Queens Park Rangers and West Bromwich-Albion midfielder will now be at the City Ground until 2020.

Watson’s career started at Palace, may have arguably peaked when scoring the winning goal in the FA Cup final, and could now be ending with Forest.

He’s represented England at u21 level on two occasions and boasts a wealth of Premier League experience to bring to Aitor Karanka’s side.

Forest are currently 16th in the Championship table with 35 points from 30 games this season, coming off the back of three defeats from their last four outings.

The Midlands outfit have struggled from a lack of goals, in addition to conceding far too many at the other end, so a combative player like Watson might help stem the tide at least.

There’s a lot of competition in midfield, however, with Liam Bridcutt, David Vaughan, Ben Osbourne, Jack Colback, Adlène Guédioura and Andreas Bouchalakis all vying for game time. But Watson could be a key influence.

He could make his debut against Hull City on Saturday afternoon too. Forest would have beaten out a number of sides to land his signature, and fans could get a glimpse of his quality in the coming days.

From Sportslens.com – Football News | Football Blog

Chelsea transfer news: Blues linked with move for Real Madrid superstarlet

Marco AsensioChelsea target Real Madrid star Marco Asensio. Asensio thought to be considering leaving Los Blancos. READ MORE: Chelsea plot highly ambitious move for Man City star. Chelsea are interested in signing Real Madrid midfielder Marco Asensio, according to Don Balon. The Premier League champions are stuck in a tough spot. After a string of poor […]