The perfect captain! Man City leader Kompany returns as a legend

first_imgHad Vincent Kompany not been so intelligent he could well have been a Manchester United legend.It sounds like the sort of dig Manchester City fans would aim at their bitter rivals but the teenage Kompany could have moved to Old Trafford when he was spotted by scouts for Sir Alex Ferguson.Instead, Kompany’s parents told him to concentrate on his studies and he eventually found his way to Manchester to become a hero in the blue half of the city. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream On Wednesday he returned, now with a Masters Degree in Business, for the first time since ending his 11-year stay as the club’s most successful captain – with four Premier League titles, two FA Cups and four League Cups also on his C.V.More than 50,000 people are expected for his testimonial on Wednesday evening – a game that will see the profits go to the homeless charity Tackle4Mcr. There will be legends from both sides of the Manchester divide playing, although Kompany will typically miss the match with a slight hamstring strain.Injuries sadly had an increasingly significant effect on the latter part of his career, but even when he couldn’t make the same indomitable impact on the pitch he always remained an influence around the Etihad Stadium.Kompany joined City from Hamburg for just £6 million in 2008 in what Mark Hughes maintains was the best bit of business in the club’s history.Not only was he a hugely-promising defensive midfielder, destined to mature into a top-class centre-back, he was already a leader.He became the perfect captain to control an ego-crazy dressing room as it evolved from a top-four challenger into a title winner for the first time in 34 years.Vincent Kompany“I think I walked through the door being humble still. I was a leader from the first day but being a legend, you can’t predict those things,” he said ahead of the match.”Now I am a much calmer leader. In my first year at City, if I saw something wrong then I had to act. I was pushing, pushing, pushing constantly, fronting people and if I needed conflict I would until we got it right.”From the first day I have always put the team before my own good. There were many players who were bigger players than myself or were promised a better future or earning more money than I was.”There was a core, including Joe Hart and Nigel de Jong, in the early days we were really holding a lot together, making sure the club was bigger than any individual. That looks normal now, it wasn’t the case back then.”I think as a group of players, we had a big impact in shaping the culture from the inside.”It’s no surprise that an all-star friendly would attract every big name available from City’s recent history.Kompany would often be on hand to try to defuse Mario Balotelli’s tantrums. He helped Sergio Aguero and David Silva settle when they arrived in Manchester with barely a word of English. He has guided plenty of youngsters, such as Stephen Ireland, inside the intimidating first-team dressing room. All these players will be at the Etihad.Others such as Yaya Toure and Kevin De Bruyne would have been there were it not for their club and international commitments.Vincent KompanyNot only that, United stars like Gary Neville, Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes will soak up a night of pantomime boos to support Kompany and the event, which has already raised more than £300,000 for a Manchester homeless charity.”It is about celebrating the 11 years I have been able to build into this with some of the players,” he said.”I have got Craig Bellamy, he shaped my ideas about the club without a lot of people knowing it.”I think Mario is coming, he should be but with Mario everything can go wrong.”I remember looking up to so many players [at other clubs]. The first years at City we were getting consistently beaten. And then we turned the tables and we were going to Old Trafford [and winning].”While it will be sad not to see Kompany grace the Etihad turf again, he can at least console himself with the fact that he enjoyed the perfect exit from the club this year.A 25-yard thunderbolt to win the final home game against Leicester City, a tearful walk around the Etihad Stadium with his three Manchester-born children, two trophies in his final two appearances and a microphone drop farewell at the parade to celebrate a domestic clean sweep.He could still be at the club were it not for those injuries, but a contract offer remained unsigned.Kompany never stopped learning. When Pep Guardiola arrived at City in 2016, he saw an opportunity to greatly improve his football knowledge.He watched the Catalan’s coaching closely, particularly his drive for success and his ability to understand and manipulate the game like no one else.With injury setbacks majorly disrupting his final seasons at the club, he finally decided it was time to end his 11-year association.A six-hour meeting with Anderlecht director of football Frank Arnesen – where he spelt out his philosophy – convinced the Belgian club to give him his first opportunity in management.“I am a City fan, I am not saying farewell,” the Anderlecht player-manager added. “I am here as an ex-player, here as a fan and we are supporting a great cause.“I spent 15 years with Anderlecht and 11 with City and I think it sums me up on who I want to be as a person. I put a lot of effort into helping this club be successful.“There is the same idea behind me being at Anderlecht – consistency, loyalty, building a process and achieving. It has been the story of my life.”It is clear to see just how much he loves the city where he met his wife Carla – and on Wednesday evening that affection will be returned.last_img read more

Nadal wins 12th French Open for 18th Slam title

first_img He started to right himself by taking the Italian Open title on clay last month.“It was very important for him to win in Rome. It was like he realized that he was getting back on the good level, on the right path,” said Nadal’s coach, 1998 French Open champion Carlos Moya, “and gaining a lot of confidence.”Soon enough, Nadal found himself in a familiar position in Paris: playing in the final, and winning it.This one began on a cloudy afternoon, with the temperature in the low 60s and only a slight breeze. In the initial game — interrupted briefly by a baby wailing in the stands, drawing a laugh from other spectators and prompting Nadal to back away from the baseline between serves — three of the five points lasted at least 11 strokes. Nadal immediately responded. He grabbed the next four games with elan, using a drop shot to help break for a 5-3 lead, then a serve-and-volley to help hold for the set.That must have been demoralizing for Thiem. But at the ensuing changeover, he didn’t whack a ball toward the stands, as Federer memorably did during his semifinal loss to Nadal. Thiem casually sat in his gray sideline seat, bounced his legs and chewed on an energy bar, furtively glancing at Nadal.Thiem bounced back, if only briefly. Talk about a stunning shift: Nadal won 25 of 26 points on his serve before — with spectators trading between-point chants of nicknames, “Ra-fa!” and “Do-mi!” — he got broken to cede the second set. That was the only set Thiem managed to steal from Nadal in four career meetings at Roland Garros.Maybe this was going to be a long one.But Thiem, put simply, wilted. Enough to create an opening Nadal barged through.By now, Nadal was creating magic at the net, and he won the point on 23 of 27 times he went forward. One drop volley was spun so marvelously that it landed on Thiem’s side, then bounced back toward the net. All Thiem could do was watch — and offer an appreciative thumbs-up. Published: June 9, 2019, 2:50pm “First thing that I want to say is congrats to Dominic. I feel sorry, because he deserves it here, too,” Nadal said. “He has an unbelievable intensity.”So, of course, does Nadal. This had been, by his lofty standards, a rough season, from the most lopsided Grand Slam final loss of his career — against Djokovic at the Australian Open — to entering May without a title for the first year since 2004. Injuries, as often is the case with Nadal, were a problem, including a bad right knee.“Mentally, I lost a little bit (of) energy, because I had too many issues in a row,” Nadal said, tapping his right fingers on his temple.“When you are constantly hit in the face,” he said in Spanish, “you end up being hurt.” “I can’t explain my emotions,” said the No. 2-seeded Nadal, who dropped to his back after the final point, getting that rust-colored dirt all over his neon yellow shirt, then wiped away tears during the trophy ceremony.Looking at the bigger picture, he is now up to 18 Grand Slam trophies, moving within two of Roger Federer’s men’s record of 20.Nadal, however, did not want to entertain any discussion of a pursuit of Federer.“I am not very worried about this stuff,” Nadal said. “You can’t be frustrated all the time because the neighbor has a bigger house than you or a bigger TV or better garden.”Thiem, a 25-year-old Austrian who was seeded No. 4 and upset No. 1 Novak Djokovic in a draining, rain-interrupted semifinal played over two days, was eyeing his first major title in this rematch of the 2018 final in Paris. But again, he couldn’t solve Nadal. Subscribe Today Share: Spain’s Rafael Nadal lifts the cup after defeating Austria’s Dominic Thiem in their men’s final match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, Sunday, June 9, 2019. Nadal won 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin) Photo Gallery By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. Share: “Almost everybody will tell you that he’s one of the best volleyers of our game,” Thiem said. “Because the last time he missed a volley was, maybe, seven years ago, I guess.”Soon enough, it was over. The King of Clay, as Nadal is known, still reigns. By HOWARD FENDRICH, AP Tennis Writer Receive latest stories and local news in your email: The Columbian is becoming a rare example of a news organization with local, family ownership. Subscribe today to support local journalism and help us to build a stronger community. Nadal wins 12th French Open for 18th Slam title Gets within 2 Slam titles of Federer’s all-time mark of 20 GO PARIS — For a few, fleeting moments Sunday, Rafael Nadal found his French Open supremacy seemingly threatened by Dominic Thiem, a younger, talented opponent challenging him in the final for the second consecutive year.A poor game from Nadal allowed Thiem to break him and even things at a set apiece. That development brought fans to their feet in Court Philippe Chatrier, roaring and clapping and, above all, wondering: Was this, now, a real contest? Could Thiem push Nadal more? Could Thiem make this surge last? Would Nadal falter?That the questions arose at all was significant. The answers arrived swiftly. Nadal reasserted himself, as he usually does at Roland Garros, by grabbing 16 of the next 17 points and 12 of the remaining 14 games, pulling away to beat Thiem 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 for his record-extending 12th championship at the French Open.“He stepped on me,” Thiem said. “The numbers are crazy. He won it 12 times.”No one in tennis ever has won any major tournament that frequently. Then again, no one ever has been as suited for success on any of the sport’s surfaces as this 33-year-old Spaniard is on red clay: Nadal is 93-2 for his career at Roland Garros, winning four in a row from 2005-08, five in a row from 2010-14, and now three in a row. 2 Photos And, thereby, a pattern was established: By the end of the 3-hour, 1-minute match, a total of 46 points went 10 strokes or more. Each man claimed half.From the get-go, it was such a physical grind that Nadal was soaked with sweat and changed neon yellow shirts after just seven games, eliciting catcalls from the stands.Early on, there were no signs of fatigue for Thiem, even though he was competing for a fourth straight day.Indeed, it was Thiem who nosed ahead first, closing a 12-stroke exchange by ripping a forehand to earn the first break point, then converting it with an overhead on a 20-stroke exchange for a 3-2 edge. He turned with a clenched right hand to face his guest box, where his girlfriend, women’s doubles champion Kristina Mladenovic, was pumping her fist and shouting.last_img read more

Seadust Cancun Family Resort Announces Indulge Promotion for Top Suites

first_imgCancun, Mexico (July 23, 2018) – Seadust Cancun Family Resort, an all-inclusive resort that sets the standard for family vacations that bring back the meaning of being together, announces the Indulge promotion for the resort’s top suites. Guests who book a minimum four-night stay in Club, Sunset or Ocean Front suites, will receive the following added values:Complementary Wi-Fi throughout the resortOne 30-minute massage per room per stayOne Aquaworld tour for two people (Subsee, Flowrider or Aquabounce)Sparkling wine and fruit amenityDaily minibar refillIn-suite gourmet dinner for adultsWednesday “Cancun Queen” Nichupte Lagoon cruise with lunch included For guests to take advantage of this promotion, they must book from now until September 30, 2018 for travel between now until December 31, 2019. Other deals currently accessible include the “Kids Stay Free” promo available for travel between August 17 – December 17, 2018 for children 12 years old and younger when guests book from now until December 17, 2018. This Kids Stay Free Promotion is available for two children when booking a Deluxe, Superior, Family or Club Suite. This perk is not available during certain days of the year, including: April 29 – May 6, 2018; September 15 – 17, 2018; and November 17 – 20, 2018. To reserve your stay at Seadust Cancun Family Resort, please or call 1-800-233-5162  About Seadust Cancun Family ResortSeadust Cancun Family Resort overlooks the idyllic beaches of the Mexican Caribbean. Offering spacious accommodations, 11 restaurants, nine bars, cinema-style theater, large meeting spaces and various family-friendly amenities including a waterpark, zipline and mini-golf course, among others. Seadust Cancun Family Resort’s unparalleled levels of service make it ideal for families to disconnect from their regular lives and connect with each other.  For more information, please visit read more

US probes Jeep Cherokee engine fires and slowdeploying air bags in Nissan

by The Associated Press Posted Jan 16, 2015 12:36 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email US probes Jeep Cherokee engine fires and slow-deploying air bags in Nissan Rogue DETROIT – U.S. auto safety regulators are investigating engine compartment smoke or fire complaints in two Jeep Cherokees, and air bags that didn’t inflate properly in two Nissan Rogues.The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says in documents posted on its website Friday that the Cherokee probe covers 50,000 of the SUVs from the 2015 model year.One owner in California told the agency he smelled oil from under the hood while driving on Jan. 4. Shortly after the Cherokee was parked at home, white smoke came from under the hood. “Within seconds the entire car was engulfed in fire, flames 20 feet high. Burning oil or fuel ran down the street over 50 yards,” the owner said in the complaint. The other owner complained of smoke from under the hood while driving 60 mph, also on Jan. 4. Both Cherokees had less than 100 miles on them.No injuries were reported.A spokesman for Fiat Chrysler, which makes Jeeps, said the company is working with the agency.NHTSA opened the Rogue probe after two complaints that the air bags on 2013 models deployed up to a minute after crashes and either inflated slowly or didn’t fully inflate. The investigation covers about 195,000 vehicles. No injuries were reported from the air bag problem.A Nissan spokesman says the air bags were not made by Japanese auto parts supplier Takata Corp., which has had problems with air bags inflating with too much force and spewing shrapnel into drivers. The company is working with NHTSA on the investigation, the spokesman says. read more