Jurgen Klopp laments missed chances as Liverpool lose Premier League lead in Everton derby game

Liverpool's Brazilian midfielder Fabinho (L) is embraced by Liverpool's German manager Jurgen Klopp after drawing the English Premier League football match between Everton and Liverpool at Goodison Park. (AFP)
Updated 03 March 2019

Jurgen Klopp laments missed chances as Liverpool lose Premier League lead in Everton derby game

LIVERPOOL: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was left to rue a number of missed chances from his side in a 0-0 draw at Everton on Sunday that allowed Manchester City to maintain top spot in the Premier League.
Mohamed Salah passed up two glaring opportunities either side of half-time, while Fabinho was also wasteful as Liverpool failed to score for the third time in four games.
“It’s OK, it’s a very difficult game for a lot of reasons,” said Klopp. “In a game that was difficult to control we had three or four really big chances.
“It’s a 0-0 in a derby, we kept our unbeaten run against Everton. It is not what we wanted, but something easy to accept because it is a difficult game.”
Klopp is still to taste defeat in a Merseyside derby as Liverpool’s unbeaten run against Everton stretches back to 2010.
However, the Reds have now dropped points in four of their last six league games to put the title race in City’s hands just over a month since Liverpool had the chance to open up a seven-point lead at the top.
“It was clear it could happen as long as City wins,” added Klopp. “We didn’t think about City when they were a point behind us, now we are a point behind. They have to win, we have to win, we will see who wins more often.”
Liverpool’s upcoming fixtures at least appear more winnable after a difficult run that saw them also travel to Manchester United last weekend before a short trip to Goodison Park.
“Manchester United away and Everton away are tough games, you are not going to win 3-0, 4-0 or 5-0 every week,” said Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson.
“We have to take the positives and keep going. We are still in the race.
“We want to win away at Manchester United and Everton, but we’ve got a point at both games. There is a lot of football to be played, a long way to go. I have got a lot of belief in this team.”


Mayor of town in north Japan bemoans lack of Olympic funds

Updated 15 September 2019

Mayor of town in north Japan bemoans lack of Olympic funds

  • Tokyo is reportedly spending about $20 billion to prepare the city to host the games
  • Tokyo organizers have faced a series of hurdles as they prepare to host the games

TOKYO: The mayor of a town in northeastern Japan that will host Olympic soccer games says his city has received no funding from the central government that has promised to use the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to help in the reconstruction of the region.

The Japanese government and Tokyo 2020 organizers are hoping to use the Olympics to showcase Japan’s recovery from the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Several Olympic events, including soccer and baseball, will be held in northeastern Japan.

But with less than a year to go before the opening ceremony, Yutaka Kumagai, the mayor of Rifu in Miyagi Prefecture, says his city has seen no funding from the central government.

“There is no help from the government, we don’t have any budget from them, none,” Kumagai said on Saturday. “Tokyo 2020 is said to be a symbol of the reconstruction but when it comes to the budget, we don’t have any budget from the Olympic games here in Rifu.”

Kumagai made the comments during a media tour of Miyagi Stadium, a 49,000-seat facility in Rifu that will host men’s and women’s football at the 2020 Olympics.

About 50,000 people are still displaced in the Tohoku region as of August, according to the Reconstruction Agency. Yoshiaki Suda, the mayor of Onagawa in Miyagi Prefecture, concurred with Kumagai. Like Rifu, Onagawa is a coastal city that sustained heavy destruction.

“We haven’t received any subsidy, even one yen, from the central government,” Suda said. “Whatever we do for the venues, for the hospitality for the Olympics, we have to do ourselves.”

Some media reports have made the claim that the Olympics have hampered the reconstruction efforts, taking workers away from the region to help with construction in Tokyo.

Japan is one of the most earthquake- and tsunami-prone areas in the world. On March 11, 2011, a magnitude 9.0 quake offshore caused a tsunami that triggered meltdowns at the Fukushima nuclear power plant. The quake and tsunami heavily damaged coastal neighborhoods in northeastern Japan and took more than 18,000 lives.

Tokyo, which projected total costs of about $7.5 billion in its winning bid for the games in 2013, is reportedly spending about $20 billion to prepare the city to host the games.

A group of anti-Olympic activists, many from outside Japan, have held small protests and other events this summer under the Japanese title “Han-gorin no Kai” — which translates roughly to No Olympics. They oppose Olympic spending, which they say cuts into budgets for housing and environmental issues.

They also call for more money to rebuild Fukushima prefecture located northeast of Tokyo. Organizers say Fukushima is a main focus of the Olympics, staging baseball, softball and soccer games there to persuade the world the area is safe.

Tokyo organizers have faced a series of hurdles as they prepare to host the games. In August, Tokyo’s summer heat forced an Olympic women’s triathlon qualifying event to be shortened because of high temperatures that are likely to impact next year’s games.

Tsunekazu Takeda, the head of the Japanese Olympic Committee, was forced to quit earlier this year when he was implicated in a vote-buying scheme to land the games. He has denied wrongdoing, but acknowledged he signed off on about $2 million that French investigators allege went to buy votes.