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first_imgRelatedPosts Vidal lands in Milan to complete move from Barca to Inter Barca president Bartomeu says he won’t go to war anymore with Messi Bale completes Tottenham return from Real Madrid Barcelona coach, Quique Setien, is pessimistic that the Spanish top flight season will be completed and has called La Liga’s conditions for the campaign recommencing “a non-starter” due to the continued threat of the novel coronavirus.La Liga has been on hold since March 10 due to the pandemic, although president Javier Tebas has said matches could start up again on either May 29, June 7 or June 28, most likely without spectators.Tebas has estimated Spanish clubs would lose around one billion euros ($1.09 billion) if the season is not completed.A draft of the league’s protocol for returning to training and matches, once given the green light by health authorities, recommends that clubs hold training camps at their training grounds or hotels for a two-week period before matches can start again.Added the protocol: “Only first team players, coaching staff and a small number of other staff would be allowed to access the facility, with everyone at the training camp being subjected to two COVID-19 tests before accessing the site.“Testing would continue to take place during the camps.”But Setien, whose Barca side held a two-point lead over Real Madrid at the top of the standings when the campaign was indefinitely postponed, does not think it is so simple.Setien told Catalan radio station RAC1 on Thursday: “Everyone wants to be ready for when the season starts again but that cannot happen until the health authorities can guarantee that there will be no problems.“I have read the protocol and the reality is I don’t know if it can be carried out as it is written, I think it’s unworkable, I think it’s very difficult logistically.”Barca midfielder Sergio Busquets also expressed doubts about the feasibility of clubs holding training camps.Busquets told Spanish radio stations Onda Cero and Cadena Cope: “We can start training again little by little but it will be difficult once everyone comes together and the competition starts again and teams start travelling.“I have heard that La Liga wants teams to concentrate for a few months, I think that’s too much and it cannot be done. There will be too many problems.”La Liga declined to comment on Setien and Busquets’ comments although a source close to the matter said stakeholders were continuing to discuss a plan to return to matches along with the association of European leagues.“The objective of La Liga is to create a protocol of the highest possible standard that can allow return to training and get us in a good, healthy, way to the light at the end of this dark tunnel,” added the source.More than 19,000 people have died from the coronavirus in Spain although this week the government loosened the terms of a strict lockdown to allow some businesses back to work.Reuters/NAN.Tags: FC BarcelonaLa LigaQuique Setienlast_img read more

first_img Fulham are positioned at the foot of the table four points adrift of safety but Magath, who replaced the axed René Meulensteen on February 14, views only one outcome at the end of the season. “This job is not tougher than I expected it to be. I knew that it would be a difficult job and it is,” he said. “But I don’t worry about that, I’m happy to be here. I’m looking forward and I’m convinced we’ll stay in the league. “I’m not looking at next season because we have to realise that we may not be staying in the Premier League, but I’m convinced that we will.” Should Fulham’s 13-season stay in the top flight come to an end in May, Magath insists he will remain at Craven Cottage. “I’m sure I will still be here, wherever the club is. I’m happy here and want to stay,” he said. Fulham have won just one of their last 13 Premier League games and have secured just 13 points at Craven Cottage all season. In contrast, Champions League-chasing Everton have won their last four matches. “Everton are in good shape, we’ve seen their result at Newcastle last weekend (winning 3-0). It will be our most difficult game here at Craven Cottage,” Magath said. “I don’t think about the other teams because we know we have to win games, otherwise we have no chance of staying in the league. “We have to win because we are a few points adrift, so we need more points than the other teams at the bottom.” Fulham continue to be without £12million Greece striker Kostas Mitroglou, who has yet to recover from a knee injury. Mitroglou has made only two appearances for the Cottagers since his deadline-day signing in January, but Magath hopes he will return soon. “Kostas is not happy about being injured, but it’s a normal thing for a football player. They get injuries,” he said. “We will see if he can join us in training next week. If there is a risk we will wait longer.” Press Association Felix Magath is convinced Fulham will win their battle for survival in the Barclays Premier League. Sunday’s clash with Everton is the first of four matches at Craven Cottage that will be critical to the club’s drive to escape relegation. Once the Toffees have been negotiated, Norwich, Hull and Crystal Palace are due to visit south west London. last_img read more

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week In those key five minutes of early 2000, the two Valley leaders had essentially ended the Valley’s decades-long battle over mass transit and launched what would become the Metro Orange Line. “It was like winning the lottery,” said Yaroslavsky. “It brought it to life.” The $330 million busway across the Valley opens next weekend, part of the latest trend in mass transit being watched nationwide. Many Valley residents are still upset that it’s a bus, not the train they had been promised for 20 years, ever since Los Angeles County voters passed the half-percent sales tax in 1980 – and another one in 1990 – for transportation. But by the time Hertzberg was calling Yaroslavsky from the governor’s office in 2000, the Valley’s hopes for a train had long dimmed. NIMBYs had protested rail lines in their neighborhoods, and by 1997, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority was forced to shut down rail construction following the Red Line construction fiascoes of the 1990s. The Valley was left with nothing but two laws that virtually prevented rail: a state law mandating that any line down Chandler Boulevard be a subway and a county law banning MTA from building subways with sales taxes. Hertzberg, Yaroslavsky, then-Mayor Richard Riordan and others returned from Curitiba in 1999 promoting the busway to a jaded public. “It was almost like this was the last chance,” said Bruce Ackerman, president and CEO of the Economic Alliance of the San Fernando Valley. Yaroslavsky told a group of transportation leaders recently that he originally had no interest in the Curitiba trip, skeptical of the foreign system. “Within 15 minutes of seeing their bus system, all of us looked at it and said, ‘This makes sense for Los Angeles,”‘ he recalled. On the trip back home, he sketched out a Valley system on an airplane napkin. His napkin map – and the $265 million Hertzberg secured that day in the governor’s office – provided for three busways: the Orange Line, as well as connecting north-south lines along Van Nuys Boulevard and Canoga Avenue. But the other lines got shelved with state budget cuts, and the MTA had to borrow against a promised state reimbursement for the Orange Line. As building continued, so did opposition. Resident Diana Lipari – whose group Citizens Organized for Smart Transit successfully sued to shut down the project before winning a $300,000 settlement from the MTA – still opposes the line, saying the MTA should have concentrated on beefing up the Valley bus system. “It’s a waste of money,” said Lipari, a real estate agent. “You’re not going to get people out of their cars, off the freeway and onto the bus.” In the end, said longtime Valley activist Gerry Silver of Encino, other Valley residents give the busway “lukewarm” support, not because it’s the best route, but because it takes the pressure off alternatives – such as double-decking the Ventura Freeway. “Everybody just realized it was a compromise,” he said. “There was no money to do anything else.” Lisa Mascaro, (818) 713-3761 lisa.mascaro@dailynews.com Memories of those who made busway The money man Former Assembly Speaker Bob Hertzberg Hertzberg became “fixated” on finding traffic solutions after having campaigned on the issue when he first ran for office in 1995. When he saw the chance to fund the Orange Line, he seized it. “It was one of the most magnificent moments of my time in public service,” he said. “We brought a transit system to the Valley.” The big-picture planners The MTA’s Kathleen Sanchez and Kevin Michel Michel and Sanchez sketched out the 14-mile route through the Valley, one of two like it nationwide, turning what has been a nearly century-old rail line into the Orange Line and its adjacent bikeway. “We are breaking new ground in some ways,” said Michel, the MTA’s director of Valley planning. “We are giving people an option to get out of their cars and use transit.” The busway builder The MTA’s Roger Dames Dames, a civil engineer and Army veteran who’s designed everything from nuclear power plants in the United States to an industrial complex in Saudi Arabia, managed the Orange Line through thick and thin. Obstacles he’s hurdled include soil contamination, a court-ordered work stoppage and last winter’s near-record rainfall. “Every project tends to have challenges when you’re out on the surface going through a big city,” said Dames, the MTA’s project manager. “Since I’m also a resident of the San Fernando Valley, it’s something that makes me feel good to be able to contribute to something that makes the Valley a better place.” The green-light guru The Los Angeles Department of Transportation’s Sean Skehan An electrical engineer who built the computer system for the city’s traffic lights in his garage about a decade ago, Skehan was the guy to call to figure out the signals for the busway. “How can we do it in a way that won’t disrupt the whole traffic network in the Valley? That became part of the challenge,” said Skehan. The solution? He built a new software program to synchronize the lights. The bosses of the buses The MTA’s Richard Hunt, Gary Spivack and George Trudeau The Valley operations trio has spent months training the drivers about where to slow down, where to speed up and how to make sure the buses run on time. They’ve got decades of combined experience at the MTA. “It’s an opportunity,” said Hunt, the MTA’s Valley general manager. “People in this organization can really look back at the end of the day and say, ‘We did this.”‘ The political powerhouse Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky Yaroslavsky recently joked he could count on one hand those who joined him in the often lonely battle for the busway. He believes the Orange Line can be a prototype for transit in Los Angeles. “This is another busway along life’s precipitous course, or it’s a revolution,” he said. “Our charge is not to solve the traffic problem for Los Angeles County. We can’t solve the problem. We have too many cars. But what we can do is offer people an alternative to the parking lot that is the 101.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Bob Hertzberg, on deck as Assembly Speaker-elect, was in the governor’s office fighting to get transportation funds for the San Fernando Valley when he stepped aside and called Valley Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky. He whispered into the phone: “How much do we need?” He was asking about the Valley busway after the two had recently returned from a trip to Curitiba, Brazil, where they were won over by that city’s renowned system of mass-transit busways. The supervisor gave him a figure. Hertzberg got it in the budget. last_img read more