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Evans pulling out all the stops

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first_imgJonny Evans has become a football obsessive in order to make sure he does not get left behind in the battle for a first-team spot at Manchester United. Press Association Yet, with Phil Jones also earmarked for a central defensive slot and Chris Smalling good enough to play for England in that position, Evans accepts he can take nothing for granted. And, speaking to Press Association Sport during United’s current tour of the Far East and Australia, the Northern Ireland international outlined the work that has to be done to remain in contention at Old Trafford. “For me, the last couple of years has been about learning how to live right off the pitch,” he said. “My focus has been solely about football. When I wake up in the morning it is the first thing I think about. “I take time and think about how I am going to improve. It becomes an obsession. I get up two hours earlier than I used to. I get into training earlier and go to the gym. “I understand there is a fine line. I like to play golf. I like to spend time with my wife. I don’t overkill it. As soon as I have finished training I try and relax. “But I have a routine which I have worked hard at and which works for me.” Evans recoils slightly when it is mentioned such focus is similar to that of former team-mate Gary Neville. Yet single-mindedness and dedication are traits to be admired in an era where so many players are prepared to settle for something less than their best because the trappings of stardom have already arrived. “The way I look at it is if I didn’t do that stuff I might not still be at Manchester United,” he said. “When I see people working hard and putting the effort in I think ‘fair play’. “Others might think it is being busy or you are doing stupid work but it gives you a mental edge.” center_img Since the severity of Rio Ferdinand’s muscular complaints first began to surface in 2008, Evans has gradually edged further up the Red Devils hierarchy. By last season, former manager Sir Alex Ferguson said he regarded Evans as a first-choice member of his side, with Ferdinand or Nemanja Vidic his partner depending upon the opponent. last_img read more

Premier League: West Ham stage second-half comeback, late goals and more!

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first_img 5 5 Swansea City 1-0 Norwich CityNorwich face an uphill task to avoid relegation as they were beaten 1-0 by fellow strugglers Swansea at the Liberty.It was always going to be a close contest, but Norwich never looked like winning.  Swansea were again without manager Francesco Guidolin, who has been in hospital with a chest infection.In his absence they won at Arsenal in midweek  and they did under Alan Curtis’ leadership once again. Gylfi Sigurdsson scored the only goal of the game as he calmly got on the end of Leroy Fer’s through ball. 5 Newcastle United 1-3 BournemouthThe pressure on Steve McClaren was increased as Newcastle were beaten 3-1 at home to fellow relegation rivals Bournemouth.Under-fire boss McClaren was publicly backed by his players before kick-off, but they did not appear to be behind him judging by their performance at St. James’ Park.The Cherries took the lead after 28 minutes when Josh King’s cross from the left was turned past Rob Elliot by the Magpies’ Steve Taylor.The atmosphere turned sour on Tyneside as poor defending allowed Bournemouth to double their tally. King found space on the right-hand side of the box and he finished brilliantly past Elliot into the roof of the net. With ten minutes to go, Jonjo Shelvey sent a pinpoint ball through and Ayoze Perez coolly past Artur Boruc.Hopes of a last-minute comeback were dashed as Charlie Daniels netted a third, while chants of ‘sacked in the morning’ followed the full-time whistle.Chelsea 1-1 Stoke CityMame Biram Diouf’s late strike rescued Stoke a 1-1 draw with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.Bertrand Traore, starting just his second Premier League game for the Blues, repaid Guus Hiddink for the faith showed in him by opening the scoring in west London.The 20-year-old, from Burkina Faso, netted his fourth goal in five games. With 39 minutes on the clock, he turned and sent a stunning effort from the edge of the box past Jack Butland.Mark Hughes’ Potters were back on level terms six minutes from time as Mame Birame Diouf was quickest to react to Thibaut Courtois’ clearance, finishing past the Belgium shot-stopper. 5 5 Manchester City 4-0 Aston VillaManchester City showed their title credentials as they put on a stunning second-half performance to pile more misery on Remi Garde’s Aston Villa with a 4-0 scoreline at the Etihad.  After a goalless first half, title-chasers City made up for it in the second. Yaya Toure opened the scoring after 48 minutes following neat link-up play between David Silva and Sergio Aguero.Argentinian hitman Aguero was on the score sheet two minutes later as Micah Richards’ attempted clearance hit the striker and rolled into the back of the net.Aguero doubled his tally when he latched onto Silva’s ball, firing past Brad Guzan at the near post. Raheem Sterling showed improvement in front of goal as he displayed composure to finish a fourth after Jesus Navas’ neat through ball.Aguero could have had a hat-trick when City were awarded a spot-kick, but the former Atletico Madrid frontman struck the post.City bounced back from their heavy defeat at Liverpool in style as they try to catch up with top two Leicester and Tottenham. Everton 2-3 West HamWest Ham staged a stunning second-half comeback to beat ten-man Everton 3-2 at Goodison Park.Seventeen-year-old Reece Oxford, who started the season so well under Slaven Bilic, was handed his first Premier League start since August, following a number of injuries to United’s back four.The home side were ahead after 13 minutes as Romelu Lukaku’s low shot across goal beat Adrian. The Belgium forward now has eight in eight against the Hammers.Kevin Mirallas was booked twice in 20 first-half minutes but it did not make a difference initially for the home side.The Toffees made it two-nil shortly before the hour mark as Lukaku turned provider. Aaron Lennon scored his sixth goal in ten games as he slotted under the Spanish goalkeeper.Everton had the chance to make it three as they were awarded a penalty. Muhamed Besic skipped past Alex Song on the edge of the area and the ex-Arsenal midfielder fouled Besic in the box. Lukaku stepped up and his spot-kick was poor, Adrian diving the right way.  West Ham were soon back in the game thanks to two quick-fire goals. First, former Nottingham Forest man Michail Antonio headed home from close range, then three minutes later Diafra Sakho got on the end of Antonio’s cross to level the east Londoners.As the clock passed the 90-minute mark, West Ham won it in incredible fashion as Sakho’s flick fell to star man Payet in the box, who finished to secure the win. Dimitri Payet strikes late on at Everton Southampton 1-1 SunderlandSouthampton rescued a point with an injury-time equaliser to hold Sunderland to a 1-1 draw at St. Mary’s.The home side were reduced to ten men with 11 minutes remaining as Jose Fonte was shown a second yellow card.  Sam Allardyce’s men soon capitalised on the man advantage as Jermain Defoe netted late on, sweeping home inside the box.Of all people to draw the Saints level four minutes into added time, it was Virgil van Dijk, whose first-time finish beat Vito Mannone at the near post.Earlier on Saturday, north London rivals Tottenham and Arsenal drew 2-2 at White Hart Lane in another feisty encounter.Leicester City remain top of the table and their clash at Watford is live on talkSPORT from 5:30 – click here for live commentarylast_img read more

Minister Bennett reviewing complaints made against corrupt band council in British Columbia

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first_imgKenneth JacksonAPTN National NewsIndigenous Affairs minister Carolyn Bennett has told APTN National News she is reviewing allegations of corruption on Peters First Nation that elders say is extinguishing their family lines.Elders wrote Bennett last month pleading with her to step in to help solve their membership issues.“Our family lines are being extinguished,” wrote Ed Peters, 74, the oldest surviving member of Peters reserve about two hours east of Vancouver.The “vehicle” for that extinguishment is Section 10 of the Indian Act, Ed Peters wrote, along with fellow elders Robert and Dorothy Peters.Ed Peters with a picture of his late mother Minnie Peters in the background.Section 10 came into effect in 1987 under Bill C-31 allowing bands to control their membership as long as the minister signed off on a membership code. After doing so the government would still grant status but not membership.Just over 230 bands were given the special status 30 years ago and it was developed to deal with the influx of applicants resulting from Bill C-31 that gave women their status back after losing it for marrying a non-status person. It also gave status to their children.“There is going to be a lot of complexity but I’d love to know more about Peters First Nation,” said Bennett “I know (Section 10) is problematic and I want to know more.”Bennett received two letters last month from members of Peters band – one from the elders and another from Samantha Peters, 41. They have not received a response.APTN provided paper copies of the letters during an interview with Bennett who said she will be reviewing them.“I’ll read them and then we’ll find out,” said Bennett referring to what steps she may be able to take.An APTN investigation has uncovered that once Peters got control of its own membership, it limited the number of people allowed to be members – despite people appearing to qualify under the membership code, which has kept the number of eligible voters low, as well.There are 165 status Indians registered to the band but only 42 can cast a ballot in elections. As Peters is basically one big family, some members there say one side has had control ever since 1987.“The Voters Lists used by this Band are corrupt,” wrote Robert Peters, whose son, Guy Peters, 51, has been denied membership several times despite the membership code stating the ‘natural child’ of a member can be a member as well. Guy Peters is currently in Federal Court hoping a judicial review of his latest denied application will be overturned.But all agree it’s creating a costly and lengthy legal battle few there can afford.“This must end now,” wrote Samantha Peters to Bennett on Feb. 17. “We refuse to bear the brunt of costs, via litigation, of subject matter that is not any fault of our own.”Samantha has been fighting the issue for several years now. It was a promise she made to her dying mother, Roberta Peters, in 2010. Before Roberta died she made Samantha promise to the fix the membership.Samantha Peters, left, with her late mother Roberta Peters in this undated photo supplied by the family.It was a fight Roberta has passed on from her mother, Minnie Peters.Minnie wrote Brian Mulroney’s former Progressive Conservative government in 1990 pleading with the Indian Affairs minister at the time to step in. Her letter was also shared with Bennett.“I am writing to you as my last resort,” she wrote the former Indian Affairs minister Pierre Cadieux on Jan. 4, 1990, less than three years after Peters became a Section 10 band. “Bill C-31 has unfortunately provided the opportunity through Section 10 for what is a virtual dictatorship to become a legal and permanent entity.”She went on to say, “the chief is accountable to no one and can maintain his power through intimidation, the control of information and the manipulation of resources.”In her letter, Minnie Peters outlined how the chief was then able to quickly put a stranglehold on the reserve, alleging he didn’t hold council meetings, gave his daughter membership even though she had married a “non-Indian” years before C-31, while refusing to accept other C-31 applicants, including elders who wanted to return home, and his son had a new home while other members lived in derelict housing.Samantha kept her promise to her mom by submitting more than 66 applications for people who have status through Peters but are not members, including Ed Peters’ two children – he’s the elder but his children were not members.None were approved, including an elder who wanted to return home before she died.There are nine people with applications currently open, but only a handful have received a response from the band council after filing them in October. Their applications were put off until the latest election on Jan. 19, which the members have appealed to Indigenous Affairs asking the government to overturn it over alleged manipulation of the membership list.As that is being reviewed by INAC, they are asking Bennett to launch her own investigation into Peters.“Now, it has gone too far, for too long, and we beg your intervention to remedy the alleged transgressions,” wrote Samantha [email protected]last_img read more