Tag: 夜上海歌

  • Premier League XI v La Liga XI: Is Gareth Bale right about the world’s best league?

    first_img Gareth Bale thinks La Liga is better than the Premier League, and Chelsea found out first hand last season just how strong Spanish football is Gareth Bale has taken a shot at English football after claiming La Liga is the best league in the world. The Champions League winner says the Spanish league is ‘the most exciting’ and points out that the world’s ‘top players’ are now plying their trade in Spain. So is he right? In an effort to find out, talkSPORT pick our best XI from both the English and Spanish leagues. Which do you think is the strongest?Premier League GoalkeeperThibaut Courtois has proved himself as one of Europe’s finest goalkeepers and is finally set to get his chance to show what he can do at Chelsea having returned from three seasons on loan at Atletico Madrid. There he won La Liga and came desperately close to winning the Champions League and it is that European experience which sees him edge out Tottenham’s Hugo Lloris here.DefenceAt the back Pablo Zabaleta’s superb consistency at Manchester City means he is a shoo-in for the right-back spot while Chelsea’s new left-back Filipe Luis just gets the nod ahead of Leighton Baines. The former Atletico Madrid star played a key role in the meanest defence in La Liga last year as he helped his side win the title. In the middle, Luis is joined by his captain at Stamford Bridge, John Terry and Manchester City skipper Vincent Kompany, who both continue to prove they are the best Premier League defenders around.MidfieldA three-man midfield sees Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard anchor the side along with Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsey and Manchester City’s rampaging Yaya Toure playing the furthest ahead. The Reds skipper performed brilliantly to help Liverpool mount an unexpected title challenge last time out, while Ramsey is rewarded for a blistering season, which saw him manage ten goals and eight assists despite missing large chunks of the campaign through injury. Toure publicly stating he will stay at City is a huge boost for this XI, with the Ivorian continuing to dominate from box-to-box for the Premier League champions.AttackAlexis Sanchez’s arrival at Arsenal has got fans purring with excitement. The Chilean enjoyed a tremendous World Cup and fine season at Barcelona, where he managed 19 goals and ten assists despite not always being first choice at the Nou Camp. The £34million arrival takes up a slot on the right side of attack, while Chelsea star Eden Hazard lines up on the opposite flank but both are easily capable of swapping when needed. The duo boast goals and creativity in abundance and the main striking position goes to Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero, who despite struggling with injuries recently, is still one of the most lethal finishers in the game.The benchHugo Lloris is by far the most accomplished goalkeeper behind Courtois while the Belgian’s Chelsea team-mate, Petr Cech provides another alternative, though whether he leaves Stamford Bridge remains to be seen. In defence, Arsenal trio Laurent Koscielny, Per Mertesacker and Mathieu Debuchy all are unfortunate to miss out on the starting XI, as is Everton’s Leighton Baines. In midfield Cesc Fabregas, David Silva, Oscar, Juan Mata and Samir Nasri offer options. Further forward the likes of Robin van Persie, Alvaro Negredo, Daniel Sturridge, Raheem Sterling, Theo Walcott, Romelu Lukaku and Diego Costa can also provide ammunition if called upon.La LigaGoalkeeperWith Thibaut Courtois returning to Chelsea, La Liga has lost its most consistent keeper over the last few seasons, and mistakes from Iker Casillas in both the World Cup and Champions League final suggest he’s not quite at the top of his game anymore. Diego Lopez also committed a few high profile errors last season – most notably in both league Clasico encounters – while Victor Valdes will depart Spain for a new league when back to full fitness. One man who looks ready to step up and become the best keeper in La Liga is Keylor Navas, who produced outstanding performances at the World Cup with Costa Rica, and managed to concede the fourth lowest number of goals in Spain last season with Levante – no small feat considering he didn’t have a back four of Real Madrid, Atletico or Barcelona’s quality in front of him. Appropriately, Real Madrid are on the verge of signing the Costa Rican.DefenceWhile Dani Alves looked a shadow of his former self last year, and Dani Carvajal had ups and downs throughout the season, Atletico Madrid’s Juanfran was always reliable for Diego Simeone at right back, proving vital for the Colchoneros. His team mates Diego Godin and Joao Miranda were the best centre back pairing in the league meanwhile, with the Atleti back four conceding fewer league goals (26) than any other side in either Spain or England in 2013/14. At left back, Jordi Alba is probably the best in his position left in Spain after the departure of Filipe Luis, with both Marcelo and Fabio Coentrao failing to find consistency.MidfieldOne of the few Barcelona players to escape last season with any credit, Sergio Busquets is still the best pure holding midfielder in the world, and has added more damaging forward passes to his game over the last two years. Ahead of him, Los Blancos midfielder Luka Modric has been more consistent than greats like Xavi or Andres Iniesta over the last year and a half, getting over a post-Christmas dip by producing a strong performance in Real Madrid’s Champions League final win. Toni Kroos, meanwhile, comes to Spain off the back of an exceptional World Cup, along with being Bayern Munich’s most consistent central midfielder last season, helped by Thiago Alcantara’s injury problems.ForwardsA ‘bad’ season for Lionel Messi meant scoring 41 goals in 46 games for Barcelona then dispatching a further four (plus a shoot-out penalty) en-route to a World Cup final with his nation. The Argentine still comfortably makes it in to the best team in Spain therefore, while there’s little debate over who at least one of his forward team mates would be. With 51 goals in 47 appearances last year, Cristiano Ronaldo once again hit ridiculous heights when it came to finding the back of the net, and 31 league strikes meant another Pichichi trophy for La Liga’s top scorer now rests on his mantelpiece. Gareth Bale, meanwhile, overcame a difficult start to the year by proving vital in Real Madrid’s Copa del Rey and Champions League wins, scoring in the finals of both tournaments, and finishing the season with 22 goals and 19 assists.The benchThe best of the rest is almost as good as the starting eleven. Diego Lopez, Iker Casillas and Claudio Bravo could fight it out for the back-up keeper’s role, while Sergio Ramos, Pepe, Raphael Varane and Dani Carvajal would all provide great defensive cover. Andres Iniesta, Angel Di Maria, Koke and Ivan Rakitic are all accomplished midfielders capable of playing for any team in the world, while Mario Mandzukic, Neymar, Luis Suarez and Karim Benzema aren’t exactly bad alternatives up front. A bench composed of any combination of the above players would be more than useful. 1 Which of these two teams do you think is the strongest, and which league do you think is the best? Let us know by leaving your thoughts below… 1last_img read more

  • Rockets win 10th straight, top Kings

    first_imgTyphoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Smith, Griffin help Pistons beat Hawks to end 3-game skid NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers Ask anyone on the team if they believe they can get better after the break and the answer comes quickly — and often in one word.“Absolutely,” Chris Paul said.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“Of course,” James Harden said, before the question was even done.Harden had 28 points, nine rebounds and nine assists, and the Rockets fought off a late rally for the 100-91 win. The Rockets wasted no time putting Johnson to work. Johnson, who signed with the team on Wednesday afternoon, checked in with about four minutes left in the first quarter. The 36-year-old free agent spent 32 games with the Jazz this season. The move reunites him with D’Antoni, who he played for in Phoenix from 2002-05.Johnson had nine points and three rebounds in 31 minutes and the Rockets are looking forward to seeing what he can contribute once he gets better acquainted with the team.“Joe’s going to fit in great,” D’Antoni said. “He’s going to be really good, smooth … he can make plays. He’s got some gas left.”UP NEXTKings: Host Oklahoma City on Feb. 22.Rockets: Host Minnesota on Feb. 23. MOST READ Houston led by as many as 17, but the Kings got within striking distance several times in the fourth quarter. They were down six late when Houston used a 7-2 run, capped by a 3-pointer from Harden, to make it 94-83 with just more than a minute left.The Kings scored the next five points, with a 3-pointer from Garrett Temple, to cut it to six again with 30 seconds left. Joe Johnson, in his Houston debut, added two free throws before Bogdan Bogdanovic hit a 3-pointer to cut the lead to 96-91 with about 25 seconds left.The Rockets made four free throws after that to secure the win.“We didn’t have that energy and you could just see it,” coach Mike D’Antoni said. “But they have the confidence that they can get it done defensively or by any means, and we just finished it up. Not a whole lot to say other than workmanship.”Paul added 19 points and seven assists, and Clint Capela had 13 points and 11 rebounds.ADVERTISEMENT Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH Read Next Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises AFP official booed out of forumcenter_img LATEST STORIES Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Bogdanovic led the Kings with 20 points and Temple came off the bench to add 13.“We’ve got some young guys, and the older guys are always saying: ‘Come on you young guys,’” coach Dave Joerger said. “We know (they’re) going to be good but we’ve got to hurry up and accelerate this as much as possible.”Temple, who scored the last four points of the third quarter, opened the fourth with another basket to cut Houston’s lead to seven. But Johnson made a 3-pointer on the next possession to make it 75-65.A 6-2 run by Sacramento cut the lead to seven later in the quarter before Harden made a 3-pointer to make it 83-73 midway through the period.Houston, which entered the game averaging an NBA-best 31.3 points in the first quarter, scored a season-low 20 points on Wednesday. The Rockets got going in the second quarter behind 17 points from Paul to lead 55-45 at halftime.The Rockets made the first four points of the third quarter before Bogdanovic scored all of Sacramento’s points in a 7-3 run to cut the lead to 62-52 with about seven minutes left.Houston scored the next seven points, while Sacramento missed its next eight shots, to leave the Rockets up 69-52 with about three minutes left in the quarter.The Kings ended a scoring drought of more than five minutes after that when JaKarr Sampson made one of two free throws. That was the start of the 7-3 run by Sacramento, with two 3-pointers from Buddy Hield, that got the Kings within 72-59 about a minute later.TIP-INSKings: Willie Cauley-Stein had 12 points, five assists and eight rebounds. … The Kings made 10 of 32 3-pointers, led by four from Bogdanovic. … Hield scored 12 points.Rockets: Eric Gordon sat out after bruising his right knee on Tuesday night. … Trevor Ariza missed his ninth straight game with a strained left hamstring. … Capela had two blocks and has had at least two in eight of his last nine games.WASTING NO TIME Houston Rockets forward Luc Mbah a Moute (12) celebrates after drawing a foul, as guard James Harden watches during the first half of the team’s NBA basketball game against the Sacramento Kings, Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)HOUSTON — After extending their winning streak to 10 games with a victory over the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday night, the Houston Rockets were happy, though far from satisfied.These Rockets, who are 44-13 entering the All-Star break after winning 17 of their last 19 games, have much bigger goals ahead of them.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. 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