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Mata moves closer to United switch

Mata moves closer to United switch

first_img “I can understand completely what Chelsea are doing. They could have sold him last week. “They do not make the rules, but maybe the rules should be adapted a bit more for more fairness.” None of this will concern United, who have endured such a poor campaign. Arguably their latest setback was the lowest point of all, given they found themselves outplayed at home by the team currently 19th in the Premier League, gifted Sunderland a last-minute goal that deprived them of a place in the final and then, after salvaging the situation through Javier Hernandez deep in stoppage time, conspired to convert just one of five kicks in what must go down as one of the worst penalty shoot-outs of all time. It has led to Moyes being savaged by some fans, who bombarded radio phone-ins to express their concerns. Others have been more measured in their assessment, acknowledging the squad left by Sir Alex Ferguson was flattered in the extreme by a 20th championship, achieved by a massive 11 points. It has created a situation where everyone, inside Old Trafford and out, accepts requires a major injection of morale, which former defender Gary Pallister insists Mata will provide. “He is a fantastic signing,” said Pallister, who was speaking at the National Football Museum, where he helped launch an exhibition dedicated to the 125th anniversary of the Northern League. “He has great skill, great imagination, flair and goalscoring ability. “A lot of people can’t quite understand why he has not been in Jose Mourinho’s team after being player of the year for the last two seasons. “He is the kind of player Manchester United fans want to see. He has great imagination and can get people off their seats in anticipation of the things he can do with a football. “We are delighted to get hold of him. Hopefully he can help lift Manchester United out of the spell they are going through.” As a teenager, Pallister spent 18 months in the Northern League with Billingham Town before moving on to Middlesbrough, where he caught the eye of Ferguson. He was part of the side that flirted with relegation in 1990 before eventually pulling clear of trouble and then winning the FA Cup, the start of almost a quarter of a century of unprecedented success with United. “That side was close to getting into a relegation scrap,” said Pallister, who won four Premier League titles and three FA Cups during his nine-year stint at Old Trafford. “We very nearly went into the relegation zone. “People have to remember it is very difficult to join a club the size of Manchester United. Even walking into the stadium as a supporter for the first time takes your breath away. “This is a work in progress – and everybody has to get behind the manager and staff.” Although it was widely assumed the Chelsea midfielder would head north for a medical on Thursday, Mata was forced to wait for the final details to be thrashed out between the clubs. United officials remained relaxed about the situation, giving no indication there had been any last-minute hitch that could delay the move. And, although some Manchester City fans have suggested Mata aborted his journey in the wake of United’s shattering Capital One Cup semi-final exit to Sunderland, it is widely assumed the formalities will be concluded within the next 24 hours. That would allow the 25-year-old to train with his new team-mates over the weekend, before being presented to the media next week, possibly ahead of what seems certain to be his debut against Cardiff at Old Trafford on January 28. Ineligible for the remainder of United’s Champions League campaign, Mata is tasked with trying to help his new club secure a top-four spot, having dropped six points adrift of Liverpool. Yet, whilst hopes of retaining their Premier League title have all but disappeared, United could have a significant say in who does win it. And it has not escaped Arsene Wenger’s attention that Mata will strengthen a United side that may have already faced Chelsea twice, but still have matches against Arsenal and Manchester City to play. “It opens up again questions about the dates of this transfer window,” said Wenger. “Some teams have already played twice against one opponent and some others not. “If you want to respect the fairness for everybody that should not happen. Juan Mata is expected to complete his club-record move to Manchester United on Friday. Press Associationlast_img read more

Gov’t Urged to Prioritize WASH

Gov’t Urged to Prioritize WASH

first_imgWaterAid Liberia, in partnership with WASH Stakeholders and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), has called on the government to strengthen the health care system through the provision of adequate water, sanitation and hygiene.The group made the call on Monday, August 8, in a joint communiqué addressed to the Ministry of Health. They want the government to give post-Ebola recovery for water, sanitation and hygiene the highest priority.Presenting the letter to Deputy Health Minister, Dr. Francis Kateh, the chairman of the Liberia WASH CSOs Network, Prince Kreplah, said the action by the group is intended to urge government to improve the health sector.Kreplah, however, commend the government for strides made to improve WASH in health care facilities across the country, adding that the government should exert more effort to deliver on its health and WASH promises.In response, Deputy Health Minister Kateh thanked WaterAid and WASH’s CSO partners for their continued work, and agreed that the issue of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) are crucial to the health care delivery system of the country.Dr. Kateh, who is also the nation’s Chief Medical Officer, appealed to Liberians to take their health seriously, especially when it involves water.Following the presentation of the letter to the Health Ministry, a press conference was held to address key health and WASH issues.The Chairman of the Liberia NGOs Network, George Kayah, commended the government and development partners for steps taken to improve WASH and health care delivery but noted that despite these efforts there still remain serious deficiencies in water, sanitation and hygiene in rural communities, hospitals and clinics.WASH Coordinator at the Health Ministry, Wataku Kortima, disclosed that the government has put in place WASH protocols to ensure that water, sanitation and hygiene play a key role in the country’s health care delivery system.He urged collaborative efforts among CSO actors as well as Liberians to ensure that challenges affecting the health sector are resolved. The Health Ministry has started the training of health care workers on WASH protocols and the essence of WASH in health, he added.Speaking on behalf of the British Charity WaterAid in Liberia, Program Effectiveness Coordinator Samuel Quirmolue indicated that WaterAid will continue to support the government and local partners in the sector to improve WASH and make it accessible.Meanwhile, a baseline report released on water, sanitation and hygiene in health facilities in 2015 found out that about 95 percent of health care facilities do not meet the Ministry of Health’s standards on water quantity for all purposes.More than 50 percent of health facilities do not have a protected year–round source of water, and 20 percent do not have any protected source on site.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more