Author Archives: karenunchained

About karenunchained

I am a 29 year old living in Sydney, Australia. I am a sports fanatic and twitter addict. The world is my playground, and I want to play!

Renovation Plans For Anfield Stadium

By Brad Eveleigh

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English Premier League club, Liverpool FC have revealed renovation plans to increase the capacity of their home ground, Anfield.

The majority of the proposed amendments would occur to The Main Stand, expanding to three tiers and the Anfield Road Stand. 

At completion of the proposed redevelopment, the stadium’s capacity would rise from 45,500 to approximately 59,000. 

In October 2012, the club stated in a press release that the priority was redevelopment rather than relocation to the adjacent Stanley Park. 

The main concern raised by local residents during the 2012 proposal discussions was the demolition of some houses in close proximity of the ground.  

Club officials have stated that discussions with property owners effected were “progressing well and all parties are close to agreement, but there are still details to be finalised.”(BBC)

Further modifications to the redevelopment would see the Hillsborough Memorial relocated to The Main Stand, paying tribute to the 96 Liverpool fans who died attending an FA Cup match in 1989. 

The club must continue with current consultation processes before presenting and submitting the final plan application to the Liverpool City Council in the coming weeks. 

Liverpool Managing Director, Ian Ayre has said: “Good progress has been made so far and we are proud to be able to unveil our plans.”

If the application is successful, construction would commence early in 2015 and is predicted to be completed by the start of the 2016-17 Premier League season.

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FIFA Delay Barcelona Transfer Ban

By Brad Eveleigh

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FC Barcelona have had their transfer ban put on hold by FIFA allowing them to now make player purchases and sales in the upcoming European Summer market.

The club was originally handed a 14-month ban after they had been found to have breached the player transfer rules by signing international players under the age of 18.

FIFA have now decided to delay the suspension pending an appeal.

The defending Spanish Champions received a notice on April 2nd by FIFA’s disciplinary committee in regards to breaking the rules in the signing of 10 juniors (players names are confidential).

They were hit with a 450,000 Swiss franc fine along with the transfer suspension.

As expected, Barca’ fought the suspension and lodged an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for sport.

Due to the complexity of the case and further possible appeals, the case is not a certainty to conclude before the opening of the transfer market on July 1, hence FIFA’s decision to delay the punishment.

Club officials will be breathing a sigh of relief as the team Captain Carles Puyol and veteran goalkeeper Victor Valdes will both be leave at seasons end and will need their big shoes filling as soon as possible.

The FIFA International transfer rule states that International transfers are only permitted for players over the age of 18 unless:

  • The Under-18 player can move to a club in a different country if their parents move there for non-footballing reasons,
  • If they are from another nation within the European Union or European Economic Area and aged between 16 and 18
  • If they live within 100km of the club

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Fox Sports Wednesday Night Fights Results

By Hayden Hooper ( @Hoopaman18 )

Horn: Welterweights Head Honcho

Jeff Horn kept his undefeated record alive and asserted himself as the country’s top Welterweight with a strong performance over Rivan Cesaire at Gold Coast’s Jupiter’s Hotel and Casino on Wednesday night.

Horn began the rematch looking much improved from their August 2013 match. He landed with strong, powerful jabs, one which even put Cesaire on the deck in the opening round. After two rounds the 26 year old former Olympian seemed to have Cesaire’s measure.

Cameroon born Cesaire would begin to find success with slick counters as Horn moved in, but it was obvious he lacked the power to trouble Horn, who continued to walk straight through with relentless pressure and work rate.

Approaching the 7th round, somewhere Horn has previously never been, he was well ahead on the scorecards and looked as though the distance would not affect him.

In the 9th round of the scheduled 12, Cesaire collapsed to the canvas with a suspected shoulder dislocation. The ref counted Cesaire out and signalled the end of the contest. The TKO victory gives Horn the WBO Oriental title and his record improves to 7-0-1, 6KOs.

Tupou Too Strong For American

The Fox Sports undercard seen Heavyweight Bowie Tupou score a 6th round TKO victory over American Nick Guivas.

Tupou having just his 2nd fight in Australia since returning from a long stint in the United States was in complete control through the duration of the bout without exerting maximum effort.

The giant 123kg Tupou cruised through the opening rounds, putting Guivas on the mat in the 3rd round.

The 5th round would see the American once again crumble to the canvas after a thunderous body shot. Tupou, who was on his final warning for low blows, then landed another shot to the body which folded Guivas in half. Referee Phil Austin deemed this one to be below the belt and deducted a point from Tupou.

The 6th seen Guivas go down again, he was able to answer the count, but after a Tupou combination connected shortly after, referee had seen enough and stopped the contest. Tupou improves to 24-3, 17KOs.

Hooper Defeats Tough Korean

Damien Hooper improves his record to 7-0, but has been given the toughest test of his young career, going the distance for the first time in a 6 round bout against Korean Young-Don Um.

After 2 rounds, spectators thought the Korean was a lamb waiting to get slaughtered as Hooper stalked and picked him apart. The 3rdround would however see Um shock everybody, most of all Hooper. He landed a punch that knocked the mouthpiece out and seemed to daze the Olympic representative.

From round 3 onwards, Hooper seemed intent on brawling with the Korean. While he possessed superior attack, landing shot after shot to his opponent, defensively the 22 year old was able to be caught by southpaw Um.

Um showed great ability to absorb punishment while continuing his own attack, this along with his showmanship had the crowd applauding a very entertaining fight.

Scorecards showed Hooper was well on top throughout the contest, reading 59-55, 59-55, 60-54. He however ended the fight with cuts above both eyes and was taken immediately to hospital where he received 6 stitches.

Casboult Crashes Ramirez’ Party

In another 6 round matchup, Mark Ramirez was looking to claim a victory on his 32nd birthday, young gun Matt Casboult, 20, had different ideas.

Casboult showed plenty of skill on his way to outpointing the more experienced Ramirez. Scorecards read 59-55, 58-56, 60-54. Caboult moves to 4-0, 1KO.

In the opening fight, Heavyweights James Porter and Marco Monarco went head to head for 4 rounds. Porter claimed a majority decision victory with scores of 39-37, 38-38, 39-37.

Arnold Palmer Invitational Preview

By Mick McGill ( @MickSportsNews )

This week is the final leg of the Florida Swing on the PGA Tour and we finish with the ‘Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard at the Bay Hill Club & Lodge in Orlando.

The event was founded in 1979 and before that it had several different name changes since it began in 1966 when it was known as the ‘Florida Citrus Open Invitational’ and was played at the Rio Pinar Golf Club which is also situated in Florida. Arnold Palmer has owned Bay Hill since 1974 however the tournament was first played under his name in 2007. In the 1966 Inaugural event Lionel Herbert beat the Legend Jack Nicklaus by 2 shots. Arnold Palmer has also won this event and that was in 1971, eight years before he became the host.

The Arnold Palmer Invitational is one of only 5 tournaments given Invitational status by the PGA Tour. The other 4 are The Heritage, Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial, Memorial Tournament and AT&T National. Invitational events have smaller fields which are usually between 120-132 players.

The field this week is of a very high standard with players such as Graeme McDowell, Keegan Bradley, Harris English, Patrick Reed and Rickie Fowler teeing it up.

The bookies top five in betting are  8/1 Tiger Woods, 14/1 Justin Rose, 14/1 Justin Rose, 14/1 Bubba Watson and 22/1 Hunter Mahan.

Tiger Woods is the Defending Champion this week and will be looking for his ninth win at Bay Hill. While he is not in the best of form this season he is a proven winner on the course.

The course is Par 72, 7419 yard with 103 bunkers and water coming into play on 9 of the 18 holes. The Purse is $US6.2M with the winner taking home $US1,116,000. The Pros rank Bay Hill as one of the most challenging and enjoyable courses on the tour. Unlike a lot of the courses on tour where it becomes a birdie-fest, Bay Hill is one of those courses that will require patience and plotting to make your way around all 18 holes. Just ask John Daly who in 1998 hit 6 balls into the water on the 6th hole during his last round to score an 18!!

This week it is all about ball striking and hitting those greens. Looking back at the past winners you will notice that they all ranked highly in Greens in Regulation stats. If you get lost in the Bermuda rough it makes it almost impossible to shoot for the green.

Patience is paramount this week. As mentioned earlier it is vital to play your shots well and maintain those Pars as they are just as important as the birdies this week. It will require a steady head and poise.

Not many rookies or first times fair well at Bay Hill so look for players who have had good experience on the course and know how to plot their way around here. Experience will get you a long way at Bay Hill. Just look at the list of past winners and you will see what I mean.

Taking all this into consideration I have managed to find three players who should fit the bill this week.

Zach Johnson 25/1

When it comes to a cool head and mapping your way around a course then you can not look past Zach Johnson. He is a proven winner on the Tour with 11 PGA Tour victories to his name.

He started 2014 off with victory at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions and has not missed a cut this year. He backed the win up with a T8th at the Sony Open and continued the form with a T3rd at the Humana Challenge.

Next up were a pair of T33rd’s in both WGC Accenture Match Play and The Honda Classic. His last outing was in the WGC Cadillac Championship where he finished T16th.

This will be Zach’s eleventh trip to Bay Hill and in that time he has only missed the one cut! His record from 2004 till 2013 reads as 6th, 8th, 43rd, 42nd, 54th, 3rd, MC, 47th, 11th and 34th. He certainly knows the course inside out.

If you look at Zach’s stats for the season you will see that his game is perfect for Bay Hill. 4th in driving accuracy, 8th in Greens in Regulation, 24th Strokes Gained Putting, 4th in Birdie average, 5th in Scoring average, 2nd in All Round rankings, 3rd in Par 4 Birdie or better, 14th in Ball Striking and 17th in Scrambling.

With Johnson this week you have a play who ticks all the boxes. He has plenty course knowledge and experience, great current form and his stats set up well for what is required. At 25/1 is a fantastic each way bet.

Henrik Stenson 25/1  

The World Number 3 had an amazing season last year which saw him win the Deutsche Bank Championship, TOUR Championship and DP World Tour Championship. He also became the first golfer to win both the FedEx Cup and Race To Dubai.

After such a ground breaking season Henrik has eased his way back into this year. He started off with three events on the European Tour with results of a Missed Cut at the Abu Dhabi HSBC, T28th at the Qatar Masters and a T29th in the Dubai Desert Classic.

It was then over to the PGA Championship where he has played three tournaments resulting in two Top 20 finishes. They were T17th WGC Accenture Match Play, Missed Cut in The Honda Classic and T16th at the WGC Cadillac Championship.

Stenson gets the nod this week as we all know how well he hits the ball and finds the green. Last season he was ranked 1st in Greens in Regulation and 1st in Ball Striking. Two stats that are required at Bay Hill. With his game in great shape since joining the Tour this season we can expect to see the Stenson we all know and love play well.

Henrik first played at Bay Hill in 2007 and finished T22nd on debut. He did not return until 2010 where his results have improved each year. 52nd in 2010, 47th in 2011, 15th in 2012 and 8th last year. Let’s hope that form continues on the upward curve this year.

Gary Woodland 50/1 

Woodland gets the final position this week as his form is continuing to improve over the last four tournaments as well as having the required stats that set up well for Bay Hill. From seven starts this year he has had no missed cuts and had four Top 20 finishes.

His season to date reads as T13th Hyundai Tournament of Champions, T38th Humana Challenge, T10th Farmers Insurance Open, T37th Phoenix Open, T33rd WGC Match Play, T16th WGC Cadillac Championship and T8th Valspar Championship. It is those last four events that stand out- 37th, 33rd, 16th, 8th. He is on the upside each week. This could be the week to strike while the iron is hot.

Gary’s course form reads as a missed cut in 2011, 48th in 2012 and 27th last year. Again, it’s another upside in results. Stats wide he is 24th in Greens in Regulation, 7th in ball striking, and 4th in Scrambling from the Rough. All positive stats.

Good Luck and Good Punting.

GEALE PUNISHES WOOD

By Hayden Hooper ( @Hoopaman18 )

Photo by Louie Abigail

 Photo by Louie Abigail

After all the pre fight animosity, Daniel Geale puts on a completely dominant performance to force Garth Wood into submission after 6 one sided rounds at Sydney’s Horden Pavilion.

Wood tried his best to upset Geale with hostility in the lead up, even head butting Geale at Tuesday night’s weigh in. Maybe this wasn’t the smartest idea, as Geale came out all guns blazing and imposed his superiority from the opening bell.

The former world champion started fast and had Wood on the canvas in the very first round. Wood was able to get to his feet and after avoiding another onslaught, he heard the bell and finished round 1.

Wood was down again in the second round, but referee Charlie Lucas called a low blow and deducted a point from Geale.

Rounds 3 and 4 would see Geale pick Wood apart with measured attacks to the head and body.

Once again in round 5 Wood found himself on the deck after a straight right hand from Geale connected flush on the jaw. Wood managed to rise to his feet and battle until the bell sounded and even after, as referee didn’t hear and the men continued to fight. Finally action was stopped and places on the stools were taken.

Geale dropped Wood to the floor once more in round 6. Wood rose yet again and after getting hurt badly at the end of the round, staggered to his corner.  Trainer Lincoln Hudson had seen enough and wisely stopped the contest between rounds to avoid his fighter taking any more punishment.

In the post fight interview, Geale made clear he would like to set up a fight with undefeated WBA and IBO champion Gennady Golovkin.

Photo by Louie Abigail

Photo by Louie Abigail

The undercard seen NRL superstar Paul Gallen score a 2nd round TKO in his professional debut over Herman Ene Purcell.

It wasn’t all smooth sailing for Gallen, as 19 year old Toowoomba resident Purcell came out swinging in the opening round. He landed a left hook on Gallen’s jaw than sent the Cronulla captain to the canvas.

Gallen was able to compose himself and in round 2 land some nice combinations. Purcell decided to prove how tough he was by dropping his hands by his side and walk straight into Gallen’s power shots. After wearing some flush punches, Purcell ended up on the ropes where Gallen continued to batter him, forcing referee Garry Dean to step in and stop the contest.

Chaos almost erupted as both Gallen and Purcell continued to fight after the bell, forcing both corners to step in to control the heated combatants. It was all smoothed over and the men embraced.

In an action packed Light Heavyweight contest, PABA champion Robert Berridge was able to defend his title with a 10th round TKO over Kerry Foley.

After almost 3 years out of the boxing ring, Foley done extremely well against the impressive New Zealander who was riding a 7 fight KO streak going into the fight.

An even bout throughout the first 5 rounds with back and forth action, Foley then landed a right hand in the 6th on the southpaw Berridge that sent him to the canvas. Berridge was able to spring straight to his feet and in the following round answered back by putting Foley on the floor.

Berridge then began to gain ascendency and landing big punches on Foley. Between rounds Foley’s corner told him they would stop the fight is he doesn’t do anything this round.

In round 10, Foley grimaced as though he injured his right hand, he was then hit with a body shot and went down onto one knee. The referee has seen enough and stopped the fight.

After a thirteen month absence from the ring, undefeated Cruiserweight Brad Pitt showed no signs of ring rust, scoring a 1st round KO over Emosi Solitua with a thunderous left hook.

Cruiserweight Shane Quinn was also able to score a KO from a left hook. His was in the 4th round agaisnt New Zealand’s Jake Revill.

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Schumacher “responding to instructions”

By Brad Eveleigh ( @Brad_Eveleigh )

Reports evolving out of France regarding the condition of Formula 1 legend Michael Schumacher is that he is now “responding to instructions” as he is very tentatively brought out of his intensive coma.

Word is that the 45-year-old has “blinked” as medics begin the slow and very difficult process of bringing him back to a state of consciousness after his horrific skiing accident on December 29.

The German has responded “positively”, according to “very reliable sources” (cited by French newspaper L’Equipe) after undergoing a number of neurological tests that commenced on Monday.

The medical team at Grenoble University Hospital have now begun the process of ending his coma and slowly reducing the required dosage of anaesthetics he was reliant upon.

According to L’Equipe: “After gradually reducing the sedation of the patient, the team of Professor Emmanuel Gay [the medic overseeing Schumacher’s treatment] has been doing neurological tests since Monday. During this first stage, the patient blinked.”

Schumacher’s manager, Sabine Kehm has said: “Michael’s sedation has recently been reduced to initiate a process of awakening which may take a long time.

“To protect the family, initially it was clearly agreed between all parties only to disclose this medical information once this process was consolidated.

“The family wishes to express sincere appreciation for the sympathy they have received from around the world.”

CAPPARELLO CRUISES TO VICTORY IN US DEBUT

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By Hayden Hooper ( @hoopaman18 )

Australia’s Blake Capparello has made an impressive American debut by defeating veteran Elvir Muriqi at the Richard J. Codey Arena in West Orange New Jerset in the main event of ESPN’s edition of Friday Night Fights.

Capparello cruised to a unanimous points decision victory with judges scorecards reading 98-92, 98-92 and 100-90, after 10 rounds of action.

The Australian went into the bout as the underdog against the 45 fight veteran, but was not overawed by the situation of headlining in his first fight overseas or the credentials of his opponent, dictating and dominating from the opening bell.

With jabs and precision straight left hands from his southpaw stance, Capparello was able to build a lead early and continue to control throughout the entire contest.

You could clearly see frustration setting in on Muriqi who had no answers to the slick boxing skills of Capparello. At one point after the bell sounded to signal the end of round 9 Muriqi banged his gloves together and stormed back to his corner . While Muriqi did have some better middle rounds, he never worried the Australian.

This victory imoproves Blake Capparello’s record to 19-0-1, 6KOs.