Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Shelly Detwiler, berry farmer and dieticianOver the years we’ve talked about the importance of dairy, ice cream and cheese but let’s talk cheese curds. One cool thing about fresh cheese curds is that they can squeak! That’s right, squeak! The National Dairy Council says that this squeak is from the tightly woven protein that when it “rebounds” off our teeth creates a squeak. Don’t worry if you don’t hear a squeak, the experts at NDC say sometimes the conditions in the cheesemaking process change and there never was a squeak to be made.What exactly is a cheese curd? Fresh cheese curds are squeaky irregular bite-sized cheese. They are basically the first step in cheese making. It all starts with about 10 pounds of un-ultra-pasteurized milk to make 1-pound cheese curds. Acid is added to milk, coagulated using rennet, then heated and cut. The whey (liquid) is separated from the solid “baby bite-size” pieces (the curds). To continue to make the Big Cheese, the cheese curds are pressed together to form blocks and/or rounds of cheese. Interesting enough, I found that cheese curds are best enjoyed within the first few days, hours actually of being made. Don’t get me wrong you can still eat them, but they won’t squeak, they are drier and saltier. Of course, if you are going to fry them, it doesn’t really matter.The story of the invention of cheese curds goes like this…a nomad about to leave on a journey poured milk into his bag (made from a calf’s stomach). Yuck!! After his long journey he opened his bag to find cheese curds. Now, I also heard almost the exact same story about yogurt so who knows, it is probably just a myth. The cheese curds are primarily a midwestern thing due to the fact that most cheese plants are found in Wisconsin, Ohio and New York. Culvers made fried cheese curds a craze when they added them to their menu, now making over 18 million orders of cheese curds a year.I’ve tried fried cheese curds across the country. By far, the best are at my local burger joint, Half-Pint. They don’t squeak nor would I want them to. They are lightly hand breaded and fried to perfection, with just enough coating to contain the incredible melting curd. They provide a southwestern slightly spicy sauce to dip them into. Of course, dipping them into a spicy berry sauce would also take them to the next level. Drop by anytime and I’d love to share an order with you! Cheers to Dairy month.Eat well and healthy,Shelly Grilled Cheese Curd Panzanella seriouseats.com 2 pounds heirloom tomatoes, stemmed, roughly chopped2 tablespoons red wine vinegar1 medium clove garlic, minced (about 1 teaspoon)12 fresh basil leaves, choppedKosher salt6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided3/4 pound hearty bread (ciabatta works well), sliced into 1-inch thick slices4 ounces cheese curd, cut into 1-inch cubes In a large bowl, combine the chopped tomatoes, red wine vinegar, garlic, basil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 4 tablespoons of the olive oil. Stir well and set aside.Set a grill pan over medium-high heat. Brush the slices of bread with a tablespoon of the oil. Cook, flipping occasionally, until grill marks appear and the bread is crisp. Set bread aside on a cutting board to cool for a minute.Meanwhile, reduce the heat on the grill pan to medium-low. Wait a minute or two for it to cool down, and then brush with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil. Add the curds and cook until they are browned and crisp on the bottom, but not completely melted on top. When done, use a fork and carefully remove the curds from the grill pan and set aside on a plate.Chop the bread slices into 1-inch cubes and toss well with the tomatoes. Season the mixture with more salt if needed. Divide the panzanella between four large bowls and garnish with the grilled cheese curds. Baked Cheese Curds Geniuskitchen.com 10 ounces cheese curds1 cup flour4 eggs, beaten2 tablespoons milk2 teaspoons salt1 teaspoon ground pepperolive oil flavored cooking spray 2 c Italian seasoned panko style breadcrumbsIn three trays set up a breading station, the first with flour (seasoned with salt and pepper), the second with eggs and milk (well beaten and seasoned with salt and pepper), and the third with bread crumbs (I use 1 box Progresso Italian seasoned panko bread crumbs).Working with a dry hand and a wet hand, move the curds through the three stations, flour first, egg wash second, bread crumbs third, back to egg wash and finally through the bread crumbs. This will double bread the cheese. The goal is to completely cover the cheese with the breading, and it does get messy. Place breaded cheese on a wax paper lined cookie sheet.After all cheese is breaded, place the cookie sheet in the freezer until the curds set up. I like to freeze for a minimum of four hours. After they have set up you can store in a freezer storage bag.When ready to cook, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray each cheese curd with cooking spray and place on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Cook for 15-20 minutes until brown and maybe one or two start to leak. Serve with marinara sauce. Fresh Homemade Cheese Curds cheesemaking.comMost of these supplies you can purchase online at cheesemaking.com or Amazon 2 gallons of Milk (Not UltraPasteurized)½ tsp. calcium chloride1packet C201 Thermophilic Culture1/2tsp Single Strength Liquid RennetCheese Salt Start out by bringing 2 Gallons of milk up to a temperature of 96¡F. Once the milk is at 96F, set a timer for 90 minutes (so you can measure the critical process from ripening through scald; this is the critical part and needs to run by the clock) and proceed with the recipe. Optional If you want more color in the curds add 1/4-1/2 tsp of annato cheese coloring at this point.Next 1/2 tsp of Calcium Chloride is measured out and added to the milk along with a pack of (C201 Thermophilic Culture). The milk is then kept at 96¡F to culture (ripen) the milk for 30 minutes.Next measure out 1/2 tsp of single strength Liquid Rennet and add this to 1/4 cup of cool water, add and stir the milk gently for about 30 seconds. In about 6-10 minutes the milk will begin to gel and in 18-25 minutes a firm set should take place. This can be tested by inserting a knife and lifting with the broad surface to split the curd as seen above. In a few seconds the cut will fill with clear whey, if it is cloudy wait a few more minutes.Next cut the curd surface into 3/4inch cubes. Wait 3 minutes then begin to stir. Keeping the temperature at 96¡F and as you stir the curds will become smaller.You can now begin heating the curds slowly to 116 degrees F over 30 minutes. They will continue to shrink as more whey is released. About now your timer should be going off. Continue to cook the curds for 30-60 minutes depending on how dry you like them. Once the curds are cooked, transfer them to a cloth lined colander to drain.The cloth is then gathered by its corners and hung for 15 to 20 minutes. Then the cloth is twisted tight to press the curds together. A small plate, placed on top of the curds, provides an excellent flat surface for pressing.Press with a weight of 1 Gallon of water (app. 8 lbs) and let set 1-3 hours. In about 1-3 hours, you’ll have a nice consolidated mass of curds. This curd mass can now be broken into bite size pieces and tossed with a bit of salt.It is now ready for eating. I store the curds in a zip lock bag in the fridge. NOTE: If you have a pH meter, the end of step 5 should be pH 6.4 and after step 7 it should be pH 5.3.
Duterte wants probe of SEA Games mess Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue Catholic schools seek legislated pay hike, too “We started googling ‘fake penises’ and studied different ways to beat a drug test,” he wrote, before ordering a prosthetic penis online.Odom said he used urine supplied by his drug-free trainer to pass the test when a doping control officer arrived at his house. The drug-tester watched from a few feet away as Odom produced a fake urine sample.“He stuck a thermometer in the cup to gauge the temperature … satisfied that the pee was mine, and said ‘Welcome to Team USA,’” Odom writes in the book.The US basketball team would go on to suffer disappointment at the Olympics, finishing with a bronze medal.Odom, a member two NBA finals-winning Lakers teams in 2010 and 2011, suffered a life-threatening breakdown in 2015 when he was discovered unconscious at a brothel in Nevada.ADVERTISEMENT LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – MAY 08: Lamar Odom attends the Fashion Nova x Cardi B Collection Launch Party at Hollywood Palladium on May 08, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. Rich Fury/Getty Images/AFPFormer NBA star Lamar Odom has revealed he used a prosthetic penis to dupe drug-testers before competing at the 2004 Olympics for the United States, according to an upcoming memoir.The 39-year-old former Los Angeles Lakers star made the revelation in his autobiography “Darkness to Light”, which lifts the lid on his battles with drugs and sex addiction.ADVERTISEMENT View comments Rica Rivera grateful have seen UST, Thomasian crowd back in UAAP Finals before leaving DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ‘Rebel attack’ no cause for concern-PNP, AFP Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:43PDEA holds surprise drug test at bus terminal in QC for ‘Undas’01:57Student activists tell CHED commissioner to resign02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss LATEST STORIES Odom said he had panicked after being named to the US Olympic team for the 2004 Games in Athens, fearing that he would fail a drugs test.“The joy of being named to the twelve-man roster quickly turned to anxiety when Olympic officials informed me that I would have to pass a drug test before officially joining the team,” Odom said, according to excerpts of his book published on People.com.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics“There was absolutely no way I was going to pass. I’d been smoking weed every day that summer,” he wrote. “Panic set in.”Odom said he turned to the Internet to come up with a solution. MOST READ Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess He had suffered kidney failure and multiple heart attacks and strokes and was in a coma before later recovering consciousness.Odom says in the book that he is still struggling with addiction.“I’m still an addict,” he said. “I still struggle … (But) I will not go into the darkness. Ever again.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Two-day strike in Bicol fails to cripple transport
RankCoachWin %Team 4Barry Switzer83.7%Oklahoma 10Bud Wilkinson82.6%Oklahoma 12Percy Haughton81.7%Harvard 14Frank Thomas81.2%Alabama 22Nick Saban77.4%Alabama 5Tom Osborne83.6%Nebraska 2Frank Leahy86.4%Notre Dame On Wednesday afternoon, Berry Tramel dropped a bombshell on all of us: Bob Stoops, after 18 years in Norman, is retiring as the head coach at the University of Oklahoma. He’ll be replaced by 33-year-old offensive coordinator Lincoln Riley.“Big Game Bob” has been around the Big 12 seemingly forever, and whether you love him or hate him, there’s no question he’s owned the Big 12 unlike any coach has the last several decades. Let’s take a look at Bob Stoops’ career by the numbers.• 190-48 overall record. Stoops owns a 79.8% winning percentage over 238 games since 1999. Think about how hard that is to do! Per Sports Reference, that puts Stoops No. 17 in the history of Division 1 football coaches, ahead of the likes of Bear Bryant, Bo Schembechler, Woody Hayes, and for now, Nick Saban. 8Bob Neyland82.9%Tennessee 17Bob Stoops79.8%Oklahoma 13Jock Sutherland81.2%Pitt Fielding Yost83.3%Michigan 15Bob Devaney80.6%Nebraska 21Bo Schembechler77.5%Michigan 16George Woodruff80.3%Pennsylvania 23Andy Smith77.1%California 11Chris Petersen82.1%Boise State 25Wallace Wade76.5%Duke 1Knute Rockne88.1%Notre Dame 9Jim Tressel82.8%Ohio State 18Henry Williams78.5%Minnesota 6Charley Moran83.3%Centre 3Urban Meyer85.1%Florida 19Fred Folsom78.1%Colorado 24Fritz Crisler76.8%Michigan • 10 Big 12 Titles. This one is nuts. Oklahoma has won the Big 12 10 (!) times since the conference’s inception (and all since Bob Stoops became the head coach in 1999). The next closest is Texas, with three conference championships. The rest of the Big 12 combined has won at least a share of 13 conference titles, just three more than Stoops all on his own.With Bob Stoops as coach, Oklahoma won 10 conference titles. Over the same span, the rest of the Big 12 combined to win… 10.— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) June 7, 2017• 14 double digit win seasons in 18 seasons. Remarkable consistency.11 AP top 10 finishes in 18 seasons6 Big 12 Coach of the Year awards, including 2015 and 2016.14-4 against Oklahoma State (77% winning percentage)9-9 in bowl games, including 5-6 in the Sugar, Fiesta, Rose, Orange, or BCS championship games.1 very bad Bedlam decision.Overall, Bob Stoops goes down as the greatest Big 12 football coach to date (and maybe ever when the Big 12 is all said and done), and one of the most successful coaches of his era, leaving young Lincoln Riley with enormous shoes to fill in Norman.Love him or hate him, Stoops has been the definition of greatness in the Big 12 and his exit is a relief for Cowboy fans. 20Bear Bryant78.0%Alabama While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
Point of emphasis moving forwardAs loyal reader Shane Hatfield requested this week, let’s take a look at what OSU needs to do moving forward. I won’t get to scholarship count (because that’s a much more fluid count in football than basketball), but he brought up an interesting point about what positions they might target with the dead period in effect and the staff regrouping for the summer.By position, this is how many commitments OSU has… Oklahoma State’s 2018 class got off to a fast start this spring with a flurry of commitments in April and May from the likes of C.J. Moore, Kanion Williams, Bryce Bray and Tyrese Williams. While that momentum typically slows as signing day approaches, the coaching staff is still full steam ahead entering the dead period and the thick of the summer coming off a five-commitment June that addressed major needs in the class.With 17 commitments, OSU holds more verbal pledges than all but three teams—Miami (18), LSU (22) and Minnesota (19)—all of which are ranked inside the top 25.Where does OSU rank nationally?AdChoices广告National rankings are fluid and change as frequently as recruits change their mind, but the Cowboys rank No. 14 nationally as of June 27. The Pokes hold a slight edge over Michigan (No. 15), and sit just behind Texas A&M, which claims its spot at No. 13. For the first time since I can remember covering recruiting, Alabama’s class—which has finished No. 1 in the final 247Sports rankings every year since 2011—is ranked 59th nationally with just 5 commitments. That’s a mark good for 13th in the SEC.Mike Gundy has a mullet and is outrecruiting Nick Saban (even if Saban has just a third as many commitments). What a world we live in!Here’s the link to the full 247Sports rankings for 2018.Where does OSU’s class rank in the Big 12?For quite some time, OSU held the top spot in the Big 12 rankings. I wrote at that time that the advantage in the rankings was quantity over quality and that it wouldn’t hold through signing day, and thus far it’s played out as I projected. Texas is recruiting like Texas is wont to do, and under Lincoln Riley, Oklahoma appears to be on a level it hasn’t operated on in years.That’s why the rankings are where they are now. Oklahoma and Texas are 1-2 at the top of the Big 12 and top-10 nationally, followed by OSU, Baylor, TCU, Kansas, Iowa State, Texas Tech, West Virginia and K-State. By process of elimination, that leaves running back and defensive tackle among the most important positions just based on total commitments (and especially DT when you look at the defensive depth chart for the future). I believe both of these spots are where priorities lie right now, especially after missing out on running back targets Lyn-J Dixon, Tae Provens and Keaontay Ingram already in this cycle.At running back, I expect OSU to continue targeting Fitzgerald (Georgia) running back James Graham. In the meantime, running backs coach John Wozniak is doing his best to gauge whether SMU pledge Jahmyl Jeter (what a name) is interested in flipping to OSU after a recent offer.Defensive tackle is slightly more murky, but right now target No. 1 is junior college defensive tackle Tayland Humphrey. He appears intent on playing college ball with his younger brother, a high school senior offensive lineman from Klein Oak, and OSU jumped in the mix for him by offering a scholarship on a recent visit. The staff is hoping to package a deal for the brothers.Past Humphrey, OKC area defensive tackle Israel Antwine remains an interesting option at defensive tackle. The Millwood product committed to Ole Miss over OSU early in the recruitment process in May, but the opportunity to play in Oxford where the NCAA is sniffing around following a foul odor over the last few years, might not be appealing for a player surely hoping to play for something more than a school likely to be hit with sanctions. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. QBRBWROLTESCBLBDTDE 1025123201
We are less than 50 days from the start of college football and our team should be pretty good! What is there not to be hyped about?So sit back, forget about the secondary for a minute and sip on some orange Kool-Aid.Who’s Ready For Some OSU Football??????????????:@OSU_Students pic.twitter.com/xwmWwOE9Ux— Boone Pickens State (@BP_State) July 9, 2017AdChoices广告 While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.
Sulzeer Campbell Ex-Arsenal star Campbell: I’m one of the greatest minds in football Harry Sherlock 18:10 23/2/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(2) Getty Arsenal Oxford United Premier League The former England international defender appears set to be overlooked for the Oxford United manager’s job, much to his chagrin Sol Campbell says he is one of the “greatest minds in football” and insists that he should be in a managerial job.The former Arsenal and Tottenham defender applied for the vacant position at Oxford United, but reports suggest that ex-Manchester City striker Craig Bellamy is in pole position to take the post.Campbell has subsequently hit out at the fact that he has yet to find a managerial job, and insists that he would take to any lower-league job like a duck to water. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp “I did go [for the Oxford job] and they didn’t accept me,” he told the Arsenal podcast Highbury & Heels.”Maybe it was a lack of experience, things like that, but it’s a full circle. Experience? How do I get experience? Well, I need a job to get experience.”I don’t want to go too low that it’s a struggle, and I don’t want to go too low that I’m under someone and thinking ‘what am I doing here?’ I would rather be managing a club myself.”I’m confident and it’s not like it’s rocket science to run a football club, especially when you get to that level. If you’re intelligent enough and a quick learner you will learn pretty soon, within two or three games, what the team needs, training-wise, to survive in that league, get better in that league, to get in the play-offs or even win the league.”I’m intelligent enough, it’s not like I played on a fox and dog pitch all my life. I can’t believe some people, I’m one of the greatest minds in football and I’m being wasted because of a lack of experience or ‘maybe he talks his mind too much’.”Go to Germany, they love people who speak their minds. They got the jobs. I’m sorry that I’ve got a mind, but don’t be scared of that. That should be something you want at your club, but obviously not.”
While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. A handful of Cowboys from the offensive side of the ball have already been included on a number of preseason watch lists in Tylan Wallace, Chuba Hubbard and Johnny Wilson. Now a pair of Poke defenders have also joined the festivities of #WatchListSZN.Senior cornerback A.J. Green was included as part of the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award watch list which was released on Monday. The award is presented by the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame to the best defensive back in college football and is named after famous Oklahoman Jim Thorpe, considered to be the greatest all-around athlete in United States history.Green comes into his final year with 26 consecutive starts under his belt. He earned second-team All-Big 12 honors last season after providing several highlight reel plays and leading OSU with 11 pass breakups.Green joins Texas’ Caden Sterns, TCU’s Jeff Gladney and Iowa State’s Greg Eisworth as included DBs from the Big 12. The winner will be announced on Dec. 12 at The Home Depot College Football Awards.Calvin Bundage is a preseason candidate for the Butkus Award, given to college football’s top linebacker.The enigmatic head hunter was stymied some by injury last season but still finished fourth on the team in tackles, fifth in tackles for loss and record 1.5 sacks in 11 games. He was voted as an All-Big 12 honorable mention by the league’s coaches.Other LBs from the Big 12 listed were Oklahoma’s Kenneth Murray, Texas Tech’s Jordyn Brooks and Baylor’s Clay Johnston. Semifinalists will be named on Nov. 4, before the list is trimmed further when finalists will be announced Nov. 25. The winner will be announced Dec. 10.
While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up. The Cowboys defense will still have several unanswered questions when it gets off the bus in Corvallis next weekend. Its back end is loaded with talent and experience, but up front there are plenty of unknowns.We previously looked at three offensive players coaches would sure love to have back from last year, now let’s look at the pair that will be hardest for Jim Knowles to replace, and how he’ll try.1. Jordan BrailfordThis one is a no-brainer. The All-Big 12 edge rusher led the Big 12 with 0.69 sacks per game and was a force attacking from all over the place in Knowles’ aggressive scheme, especially early.Fielding an elite-level defensive end isn’t a given at OSU — Gundy has had three earn first-team all-conference in his 14 years — so where will the Cowboys look to replace that type of production?It appears that it will fall to redshirt senior Mike Scott and redshirt sophomore Brock Martin to fill that void, and to possibly do so by committee.“I like Brock [Martin] in that position and Mike Scott, who did it a bunch also,” said Jim Knowles. “We’re gonna have guys do that. That worked out really well, and I think it kinda fits the approach we need to take in the Big 12 of having more guys on their feet. That’s what we need to do.”Martin & Scott, which sounds like an 1980s buddy-cop movie duo, have rotated in and out of that position throughout the spring and into fall camp. Scott is OSU’s returning leader in sacks (though just three) and Martin made his fair share of plays in 13 games last year. Neither has seen a start at OSU, but expect both to be featured players this fall.2. Justin PhillipsProbably the biggest need for OSU’s defense is experience and depth at linebacker and the biggest hit to that was the graduation of the Cowboys’ leading tackler Justin Phillips.In 2018, Phillips stepped into Chad Whitener’s vacated Mike linebacker role, where his experience aided him in a job that requires one to make quick reads on opposing offenses and to react in a split second.The Mike basically acts as a defensive coordinator’s field general, and Phillips came into iy with 15 career starts under his belt. This year Knowles is, again, breaking in a new QB for his defense, but this time there will be much less experience to lean on.It appears that Amen Ogbongbemiga (zero career starts) will step into that crucial role and Knowles has been trying to get him ready for it since Day 1.“Amen is a guy who I have been building since I arrived, knowing that Justin (Phillips) was only going to be with me for one year,” Knowles said. “Amen is a guy who I have been building since I arrived.”Amen may be inexperienced, but it looks like he’ll have the final word (🙏) when it comes to leading Knowles’ defense on the field. We can probably expect s learning curve but it looks like his DC is confident in him.“I’m pretty hard on him to pick up the system, to learn the system because I expect him to really be the quarterback of the whole defense,” said Knowles. “I have a lot of faith in him, too.”
World Cup Forget Messi, Argentina are a complete mess going into World Cup 2018 Peter Staunton Click here to see more stories from this author Chief Correspondent 06:00 6/16/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(10) Getty World Cup Argentina v Iceland Iceland Argentina Lionel Messi Opinion Lionel Messi leads the cast again as Argentina attempt to go one further than their runners-up slot four years ago but they are beset by problems The controversy caused by the Argentine Football Association’s decision to cancel a pre-World Cup friendly against Israel in Jerusalem overshadowed the national team’s preparations for Russia 2018.The political fallout was huge with the row carrying over to the very top levels of government.But the nixing of the game also meant that Argentina’s only meaningful warm-up game for the tournament would be a ridiculously straightforward hammering of Haiti in Buenos Aires. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Jorge Sampaoli is only 11 games into his tenure as national team manager and badly needed another 90 minutes for his players and systems to be tested.His football is complex and demands total adherence. It brings results as evidenced by his 2015 Copa America triumph for Chile. But Argentina simply haven’t had the time to get things together properly under Sampaoli.The former Sevilla boss jumped in during the qualification phase to replace Edgardo Bauza in order to realign their World Cup ambitions. He got them to Russia – just – but it hasn’t been a serene start.Argentina needed a hat-trick from Lionel Messi against Ecuador in the final round of CONMEBOL qualification, which said less about coherence and strategy in the Argentina ranks than it did about their near total reliance on the Barcelona man.That game represents the only competitive win Sampaoli has on his Argentina record, with three straight draws preceding that result threatening to rule the two-time winners out of the final tournament altogether.How tragic things might have been had Messi not gone back on his decision to quit the national team following a Copa America final defeat to Chile two years ago. Since November 2016, Messi is the only Argentine player with a competitive goal to his name. With Messi, Argentina occasionally appear a team capable of punching their weight on the world stage. Without him they would sink.”We always say how Argentina is wonder team, but as I look at them you have Messi up front, but what about midfield and defense?” asked Robert Prosinecki, the former Croatia international now coaching Bosnia – Herzegovina on Vecernji last week. “There are worn out players! Croatia has big chance to win the group and avoid France in round of 16, because France is one of favourites to win the title.”There is a massive gap in quality between Messi and his team-mates, even if Sampaoli has some good forwards at his disposal this time around.The problem is getting them all fit and functioning in the same team. Any manager in the world might appreciate the conundrum of fitting Messi, Sergio Aguero, Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala in the same XI but stylistic differences mean Sampaoli is yet to hit the winning formula. Injuries to Aguero and Dybala haven’t helped and the young Juventus forward is also hamstrung by the fact that he and Messi seem incompatible.Injuries have also cost Sampaoli the services of his first-choice goalkeeper – Sergio Romero of Manchester United – and West Ham’s Manuel Lanzini. Enzo Perez – now of River Plate replaced Lanzini in the squad and there are still question marks over who will get the gloves. Franco Armani is a fan favourite while Willy Cabellero of Chelsea is also in contention.He will have to do better than he did in the Messi-less March friendly against Spain if he is to get the nod however. He conceded five goals on a night which left exposed all the frailties, weaknesses and problems apparent in the Argentine ranks just weeks out from the World Cup proper.The enduring memory of that night is Messi taking leave of his seat in the stadium by the time Spain had scored their sixth.Meanwhile, casual fans will recognise Nicolas Otamendi, Marcos Rojo, Javier Mascherano and Angel Di Maria but wonder who on earth some of the other faces in the squad are.Names like Maximiliano Meza and Nicolas Tagliafico will be unfamiliar to observers who have watched Argentina go deep in tournaments like the Copa America as well as the World Cup in 2014.Argentina this time simply cannot count on the same kind of player that has gone before however and Sampaoli will have to learn a lot from his team when they take to the field at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on Saturday against Iceland.On name alone, Argentina should have been overwhelming favourites to top the group and go deep into the tournament. But Iceland and Croatia should be underestimated at Argentina’s peril. There are no guarantees against Nigeria either, against whom Argentina lost 4-2 in a pre-tournament friendly a few months ago.It all means that Argentina arrive in Russia with big problems. They faced accusations of being a one-man team four years ago in Brazil but it’s nothing compared to the plight of the team currently. Messi is going to have to drag his side along if they have any chance of decent progress.
World Cup Suarez announces wife’s pregnancy after World Cup heroics Iain Strachan 06:31 6/21/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Dan Mullan World Cup Luis Suárez Uruguay v Russia Russia Uruguay v Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia Uruguay After scoring in his 100th game for his country to secure World Cup progression, the Barca star revealed his wife is pregnant for the third time Luis Suarez hailed the “spectacular” achievement of Uruguay reaching the last 16 of the World Cup for the third time in succession – then announced his wife is expecting their third child.Uruguay joined Russia in securing qualification from Group A, as Saudi Arabia and Egypt were eliminated, following the 1-0 result in Rostov-on-Don on Wednesday.Suarez marked his 100th international appearance in style, slotting home a simple finish after a goalkeeping error in the 23rd minute at Rostov Arena. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Perfection from Pulisic: Chelsea’s Captain America has arrived in the Premier League Why always Raheem? ‘Unplayable’ Sterling setting a standard Man City’s other stars need to match ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar The victory ensured the continuation of a proud record that started with Uruguay advancing all the way to the semi-finals of the 2010 World Cup. The 31-year-old – who had to sit out his side’s defeat to Colombia in the first knockout stage in Brazil four years ago due to suspension – was clearly elated with the team’s achievement, as he chose to share some positive personal news.He wrote on Twitter: “Happy to be part of Uruguay’s history accomplishing 100 games!!!!!”Happy to achieve the final 16 stage again … and even more happy to share that we’ll have our third child.”Thank you all for the support, specially to my loved ones.”FELIZ por ser parte de la HISTORIAHAPPY to be part of Uruguay’s history accomplishing games!!!!! HAPPY to achieve the final 16 stage again and even more HAPPY to share that we’ll have our third child THANK YOU ALL for the support specially to my loved ones pic.twitter.com/GTpjxR9NkH — Luis Suarez (@LuisSuarez9) June 20, 2018 Earlier, speaking in a post-match news conference, the former Ajax and Liverpool striker insisted there is time for Uruguay’s performances to improve after two laboured 1-0 victories in Russia. “It’s spectacular, we are more than proud that Uruguay has [played] three consecutive World Cups qualifying for the round of 16,” he said.”You have to feel happy … [although] there are things to improve.”We are not playing the way we like, but as we have seen in the World Cup, what counts are the results.”What we wanted was to win and move on to the next phase. It’s a further demonstration of how complicated it is to win a World Cup match, and World Cups are like that.”Uruguay will face hosts Russia in their group finale with top spot in Group A on the line.