Thomas Tuchel reacts to Arsenal’s transfer move for PSG defender Layvin Kurzawa Comment Metro Sport ReporterSaturday 18 Jan 2020 1:39 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link Arsenal are trying to sign Layvin Kurzawa from PSG (Picture: Getty)Thomas Tuchel has responded to Arsenal’s transfer move for Layvin Kurzawa, seemingly delivering a blow to the Gunners by saying PSG ‘need’ the defender.Mikel Arteta has expressed interest in signing Kurzawa, who has made exactly 100 appearances for French champions PSG since signing from Monaco in 2015.With Kurzawa’s current contract set to expire at the end of the season, Arsenal could sign the 27-year-old for free in the summer.But Tuchel insists he has not discussed a move with Kurzawa and says PSG ‘need’ the defender who will be featuring against Lorient on Sunday.ADVERTISEMENT‘I haven’t spoken with Layvin or anyone else about his departure this winter,’ Tuchel said on Saturday.AdvertisementAdvertisement‘Layvin is number two behind [Juan] Bernat in the left-back position. We need him and Layvin will play tomorrow against Lorient.‘He has played well recently.’More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man CitySpeaking ahead of Arsenal’s home match against Sheffield United on Saturday, former Manchester City assistant Arteta admitted he was keen to bolster his defensive options.‘We are playing with full-backs that are not full-backs,’ he said.‘They are wingers or central midfielders and could we afford to lose full-backs? No, but we don’t have any full-backs.’MORE: Nicolas Pepe makes admission about his Arsenal career and reveals advice from ArtetaMORE: Mikel Arteta reveals the moment he knew Reiss Nelson would be an Arsenal star Advertisement Advertisement
French supplementary civil service pension scheme ERAFP says the carbon footprint of its equities portfolio has increased slightly against the broad equities benchmark, after an increase in allocation to North American stocks.In the latest update of the carbon footprint measurement of its portfolio of shares in major publicly-traded companies, ERAFP said that as of December 31, 2014, the portfolio emitted on average 16% less CO2 per million euros of revenue than the reference index MSCI World.While it described this performance as excellent, it also said this gap compared to the MSCI World was narrower than in 2013, when it had been 19%.The pension fund said: “This is due to changes in the geographic allocation of the various categories of the portfolio.” ERAFP’s categories included euro-zone stocks, international stocks and others, it said.“Among other things, the 2014 launch of contracts for North American stocks, which offer a structurally less satisfactory performance in this area, had a negative impact,” ERAFP said.The fact that the stocks it held had a lower carbon footprint than the reference index was mainly due to the pension fund’s best-in-class approach applied within each sector, it said.It said selection of securities now contributed measurably more to the good performance of the portfolio in terms of low carbon intensity, than did the process of sector allocation.“The positive effect of selecting securities from companies with lower-than-average carbon emissions illustrates the impact of ERAFP’s best-in-class strategy,” it said, adding that this was particularly so for its European stock portfolio.Within this portfolio, it had worked with manager Amundi to cut the carbon footprint of one fund in this category by 40% without excluding any sector, ERAFP said.The pension fund also said it had joined the Portfolio Decarbonization Coalition, an initiative sponsored among others by UNEP and the Carbon Disclosure Project.Separately, asset manager Comgest said it had won a €400m mandate from ERAFP together with RobecoSAM.It said its Asia and Japan equity team would manage the mandate, focusing on Pacific-Rim equities and using a responsible investment strategy.Philippe Desfossés, chief executive of ERAFP, said Comgest’s team had a disciplined investment philosophy with a successful long term track record in combining strong performance.
When USC running back Stafon Johnson forced his way into the end zone last Saturday, we all realized that Ohio State had lost yet another big game on a big stage. And I knew that once the Matt Barkley praise died down, the Big Ten trashing would once again rise up.Every year, Big Ten football players and fans are smacked across the face by mainstream media outlets that insist the conference has reached rock bottom. The most popular topic of discussion next to Tim Tebow’s eternal greatness is the state of the Big Ten and, more specifically, how bad the conference has become.But enough is enough — at least for one Big Ten fan.It’s about time someone provided some insight from the other side of the argument. It’s about time someone stood up for the historic, revenue-pumping conference that is the Big Ten.I’m about to be that guy.For me, the conference debate comes down to three main points: perception, recruiting and bowl game records.Now people’s perception of the Big Ten is greatly influenced by mainstream media, so let’s take a closer look at the unbalanced media coverage. In week one of the college football season, we saw a ranked Iowa team struggle to win a game against Northern Iowa and, in week two, we saw Michigan State lose to Central Michigan. These poor performances brought a ton of negative attention to the Big Ten.But what about the other conferences? Is the Big Ten the only league that suffers from an upset?In case you missed it, the high-powered Oklahoma State Cowboys from the mighty Big 12 Conference (arguably the nation’s best conference at the start of the season) lost to Houston. That’s right, the No. 5 team in the nation lost to Houston, at home. In all honesty, I heard more discussion about Northern Iowa’s near upset of Iowa and Central Michigan’s win over Michigan State.Where is the criticism of the Big 12? I know Oklahoma was without Sam Bradford, but the Sooners already have a loss, and the Cowboys couldn’t even hold off Houston at home. Throw in Colorado’s blowout loss to Toledo and Kansas State’s loss to Louisiana Lafayette (who?) and that looks like a pretty weak Big 12 to me.It just seems like an upset in the Big Ten is always front and center, even when a team in the top five suffers a defeat to a team no one has ever heard of.When this issue of national perception comes up, something about Big Ten recruiting usually follows. With all of this negativity surrounding the Big Ten, one must assume that Big Ten recruiting has taken a major hit. That couldn’t be further from the truth.Despite getting destroyed in recent National Championship games, the Ohio State Buckeyes have continued to recruit at an elite level. Take star ratings with a grain of salt, but according to Rivals.com, OSU had the third-best recruiting class in 2009. Terrelle Pryor — the nation’s top recruit in the class of 2008 — made the choice to continue his football career in the Big Ten.Plus, other top programs like Penn State and Michigan have continued to bring in highly rated classes, despite this supposed dark cloud that surrounds the conference.When push comes to shove in college football, or any sport for that matter, it comes down to winning, and it is quite obvious that the Big Ten has struggled to win bowl games.So, how could I argue with the Big Ten’s 1-6 bowl record last year?Well, for one, the system does not do the Big Ten any favors. In fact, the way the bowl system works, middle-of-the-pack Big Ten teams are put at a significant disadvantage.First, let’s look at the conference’s top teams from last year.The Nittany Lions earned a spot in the Rose Bowl and met USC in the Trojan’s own backyard. They were put up against a potent USC team, a team that — in my opinion — would have given Florida all they could handle had they met in the National Championship.Ohio State was put up against Texas in the Fiesta Bowl and lost on a last-second touchdown. If you asked Texas head coach Mack Brown how big a gap he saw between his conference and the Big Ten conference that Ohio State represented, I doubt he’d tell you he saw any gap at all.Ohio State played well enough to win that Fiesta Bowl and they should have beaten USC last weekend, but the Buckeyes just continue to lose these big games at the end.But one or two teams do not make up an entire conference. What about the rest of the Big Ten?Iowa was the only Big Ten team to win a bowl game (they beat South Carolina), but take a closer look at the individual matchups and you’ll see the disadvantages.Our own Wisconsin Badgers, who held the seventh-best record in the Big Ten, played Florida State, an ACC team that finished second best in its conference.The Northwestern Wildcats — a resurgent program that was fifth overall in the conference last season — played the Big 12 North Champion Missouri Tigers.Every year we see teams near the top of the ACC or Big 12 standings play Big Ten teams that are no better than fifth overall in the conference. Are those bowl games fair? It sure doesn’t seem like those are equal matchups to me.The Big Ten has certainly seen better days, but the state of the conference is not as bad as everyone makes it out be. It’s a flawed system, and the Big Ten suffers from it.Yes, Ohio State has struggled to win big games and that has contributed to the conference’s lack of respect, but the national media and unbalanced bowl system have contrived this “Big Ten crisis” that simply does not exist.I understand that the conference needs to start winning bowl games despite the disadvantages it faces, but I refuse to believe the Big Ten is falling apart.
The European Union (EU) has disclosed that it will support among other things the 2017 Presidential and general elections in Liberia.EU Delegation Ambassador to Liberia, Amb. Attilio Pacifici made the disclosure on May 9, at his residence in Congo during the commemoration of Europe Day.In addition to areas of support for Liberia, the EU Ambassador said his entity will also support the General Auditing Commission (GAC) and will finance a new energy project.“We will also expand the use of budget support to sustain government’s efforts in the security and justice sector in view of the reconfiguration and draw down of UNMIL,” Ambassador Pacifici added.Recalling areas where EU is currently rendering support for Liberia, Ambassador Pacific noted that in 2013 the Forestry Voluntary Partnership Agreement came into force after ratification by the Liberian Legislature.Expressing assurance for proper management of the forest sector, the EU Ambassador pointed out that Forestry Development Authority (FDA) Managing Director Harrison Karnwea is now a guarantee for the implementation of the agreement.He further expressed the hope that the chairmanship of the FDA, headed by Sister Mary Lauren Browne, as well as the vigilant monitoring of civil society will provide the oversight that the sector has been craving for long.According to him, EU-Liberia first official joint implementation committee meeting is expected at the end of this May, and they will go through all details of the implementation of the VPA.In spite of effort made to reach the VPA Agreement, Ambassador Pacifici said more still need to be done including addressing under the Liberian criminal and penal law, wrongdoings that have seriously hurt the interests of the country.“I am committed to make the process and its proceedings as thorough and as transparent as possible to ensure that a sector, stained in the past by murky deals, will contribute to bring about the changes that the President of Liberia strongly and eloquently called for in her speech on the fight against corruption, delivered at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Cecil Dennis Auditorium on May 6, 2014,” Ambassador Pacific said.In addition to the VPA that seeks to control the flow of logs from Liberia so that the country can benefit its fair share, the EU Ambassador emphasized EU’s contribution to the energy sector as one focused area for government and investors.The EU Ambassador further disclosed the EIB which is another institution of EU is blending a concessional loan of 27 million USD with funds from the Saudi Fund for Development and the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa to finance the reconstruction of the runway of the Roberts International Airport.The EU day where the Ambassador spoke was partially attended by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. Ambassadors and other host of government officials including Foreign Minister Augustine K. Ngafuan, Agriculture Minister Dr. Florence Chenoweh, Education Minister Etmonia David Tarpeh, Lands, Mines & Energy Minister Patrick Sendolo heads of private institutions and civil society groups, amongst others attended the program.Minister Ngafuan who spoke on behalf of the Liberia Government noted with emphasis that joining the EU to celebrate the day was a pride to Liberia because EU has demonstrated concern in the recovery process of the country.Minister Ngafuan said debt waivers and contributions to the energy sector are among many good things EU has done for Liberia.Responding to information about the departure of some EU diplomats, including Ambassador Pacifici later this year, Minister Ngafuan, realizing the roles of those concerned, acknowledged that considering all of what these officials have done and continue to do, the Liberian government cannot prohibit their departure because it does not lie in Liberia’s domain.The Minister did ask, however, “Why so soon?” Among those EU staff to be departing this year are Paul Maebe and his spouse Mia, head of Contract and Finance, Dr. Joan Casanova, Carlos Battaglini of the Forest sector, and Claudia Zulaika.Ambassador Pacific confirmed that he will also be leaving this year but did not give a specific date.European Day is an anniversary celebrated every year by the European Union in commemoration of Robert Schuman’s Declaration on May 9, 1950 for unification of Europe to make war on that continent impossible and spread peace and prosperity globally.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)