Egyptian Trezeguet Joins Aston Villa

first_imgHe played for Egypt at last year’s World Cup in Russia and at this year’s Africa Cup of Nations, where he scored one goal in four appearances.“We’re really excited to work with ‘Trez’,” head coach Dean Smith said in a statement after completing Villa’s ninth signing of a busy close season. “I’ve watched him a number of times.“He’s the type of wide player that we have been looking for who is direct, causes problems for the opposition in the final third and scores goals.”Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Aston Villa have signed Egypt international Mahmoud Hassan, better known by his nickname ‘Trezeguet’, from Turkish side Kasimpasa, the newly promoted Premier League side said on Wednesday.Villa did not disclose financial details of the deal, but the BBC reported they had paid 8.75 million pounds ($10.90 million) for the winger.The 24-year-old started his career with Egyptian side Al Ahly and had a stint at Anderlecht in Belgium before moving to Turkey. Mahmoud Hassanlast_img read more

Silver’s good as gold against Canada, eh?

first_imgAs thousands of red-clad Canadians stood together singing “O, Canada,” citizens across our great nation expressed their dislike for our neighbors to the north, going as far as saying “Fuck Canada.” Isn’t that just sportsmanship at it’s finest?Americans can now go back to not caring about hockey as the NHL resumes play tonight, but for a brief moment, the country was fixated on Canada Hockey Place.And with good reason.It was the biggest hockey game in 30 years, as Team USA tried to knock off the gold medal favorite Canada squad on its home ice. Sure, the two teams faced off in Salt Lake City at the 2002 Games, but Canada won that matchup as well.With that in mind, it was Team USA’s turn to take the gold on Canada’s home ice. Unfortunately for the Americans, however, those in red and white dominated for much of the afternoon.But when Zach Parise scored with less than 30 seconds to go to send it into overtime, I saw the kind of excitement that in this state is usually reserved only for the celebration of those touchdowns that are followed by Lambeau Leaps.Making the game even more exciting was the fact that Team USA was far from the favorite in these Olympics. In fact, the Americans weren’t even expected to medal in Vancouver.With Canada being the obvious favorite, many tabbed Russia and the Czech Republic to take home silver and bronze, respectively. Team USA, on the other hand?Most thought if it was to medal, it would take the bronze at best. To even reach the medal round was an accomplishment for such a young, inexperienced American squad.Reaching the gold medal game? That was just a bonus.But that’s also the problem with being angry toward Canada over Team USA’s devastating loss — Team USA was playing with house money. You can’t be too upset over losing something you never expected to win in the first place.At the same time, this was Canada’s moment. It was its game, on its home ice, in front of its crowd dressed mostly in red. The outcome of that game — whether good or bad — meant infinitely more to the Canadian squad than its American opponent.Besides, Team USA already had its moment.Defeating Canada a week earlier in the same building in impressive fashion was already a greater accomplishment than most expected for Team USA.Conversely, the 5-3 loss was devastating to the host nation.When the Americans flat out dominated Finland 6-1 in Wednesday’s semifinal, they guaranteed at least silver and showed they were far better than most had thought.But Canada is to hockey what Team USA is to basketball.In any international hockey competition, Canada is the team to beat, having won eight Olympic gold medals, a feat matched only by the Soviet Union/Unified Team. Team USA, on the other hand, has just two gold medals in Olympic hockey.Sure, beating the heavily favored home team would have been great.But silver isn’t too bad either.As Americans, we like to believe we are the best at everything, especially sports. If the Vancouver Games are any indication, Team USA is the best. At finishing second and third.Team USA’s 15 silver medals were two more than Germany’s, which finished second in finishing second. Americans also grabbed 13 bronze medals, which is nearly double the next highest total of seven bronze medals earned by Germany and Russia.Canada, on the other hand, is the best at being the best.With 14 golds, the 2010 host nation set a new standard, breaking the previous record of 13 set by the Soviets in 1982 and matched by Norway in 2002. Fourteen also breaks the record for most golds won by a host nation, set at 10 by Norway in 1994 and matched by Team USA in 2002.For that, the Canadians should be proud. They fell short of the goal of their “Own the Podium” campaign, but put on the best-ever Winter Olympic Games performance by a host nation by winning the most gold medals and third-most medals overall.Still, Team USA had its best Olympic showing to date, winning a Winter Games-record 37 total medals to lead the medal count for the first time since Lake Placid in 1932.And the U.S. athletes won in sports Americans care about and enjoy watching — alpine skiing, snowboarding and short track to name a few.So, let Canada enjoy this victory. Don’t curse our friendly neighbors to the north for winning Olympic hockey gold. Even if the game-winning goal was scored by the best player in OUR National Hockey League.This was Canada’s Olympics. Although Team USA may have won the most medals, it seems clear we were just along for the ride.“With glowing hearts, we see thee rise. The True North strong and free.”Jordan is a senior majoring in journalism and political science. What was your favorite part of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics? Let him know at jschelling@badgerherald.com.last_img read more

Nate Solomon thrives in off-ball role for Syracuse offense

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Some of Nate Solomon’s most important goals this season have come as a direct result of things he did without the ball. The SU attack has earned nods from more than half of the Orange’s coaching opposition this season for his work. His acrobatic goals against the likes of Hobart, Notre Dame and Cornell — 10 tallies in a three-game stretch, typically shooting and scoring seconds after receiving the ball — have cemented him as one of Syracuse’s top weapons despite sharing an offense with other players who need the ball in their sticks far more often.“He’s pretty sneaky,” said Binghamton coach Kevin McKeown. “He’s opportunistic when he cuts. … He’s a good cutter off ball and takes advantage of you if you’re ball-watching too much.”The sophomore from Alpharetta, Georgia, has had coaches saying similar things all season, and Solomon didn’t even score on any of his five shots against Binghamton. Hobart head coach Greg Raymond, who watched the SU attack score four times in an Orange win on April 5, shook his head at the mention of Solomon’s name.He’s found the back of the net 22 times this season, second-highest on the team, along with six assists for the top-ranked Orange (11-1, 4-0 Atlantic Coast) that starts the ACC tournament on Friday at 6 p.m. against North Carolina in Durham, North Carolina.“He’s very good off-ball,” SU head coach John Desko said. “He’s a pretty courageous player. He puts himself in those spots where he can catch it and finish, and some of them you know he’s going to get hit. The whole defense collapses in front of the crease. He’s got a lot of moxie.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textPrior to the season, Desko and assistant coach Lelan Rogers stressed heavily thatSolomon, the fourth attack in 2016, had the physical capability to be an important piece for the Orange, but needed to learn the offensive systems and spacing. In practices, Rogers threw different slide packages at Solomon, sometimes faking him out, and, he said, generally confusing Solomon.But three months later, it seems to be the other way around, and the key has been his improved dodging. Teammates, coaches and Solomon himself have praised his dodging progression this season. He keeps his head up during them, makes them into open space, feels more confident in them and looks for the ball.“I can feel where I am on the field, even when I’m not even looking at the goal,” Solomon said. “I know where I’m shooting. I’ve tried to look, but I just know when I’m open so I’ll take that shot.”In SU’s matchup against North Carolina, the Tar Heels put defender Austin Pifani on Solomon to lock him down. Desko praised Pifani as one of the best close defenders Solomon would face this season, but said his player beat the UNC defender two or three times going to the goal. The sophomore wriggled free for a goal and two assists by evaluating his opponent — Pifani is 6-foot-2, 215 pounds to Solomon’s 5-foot-10, 177 — and exploiting his advantages: speed and change of direction. “Off-ball movement was really huge,” Solomon said.On his only goal of the day, the one that started a 7-1 run to save the game for SU, he dodged Pifani on the left side of the goal, curled up toward the middle and unleashed a shot with his momentum going all right, mirroring his process for off-ball work.“He’s really good at moving around,” sophomore defender Tyson Bomberry said. “He’s able to find the open spaces, follow the slide and get to the open spot, where you know he’s going to be. It’s hard for the second slide to get to him.”When Bomberry switches onto him in practice, he keeps his stick in Solomon’s chest so he can feel where the attack is going and follow. Solomon recognizes that strategy employed by defenders and credits his off-ball prowess to practice time against those defenders. Scott Firman covers him most practices, Solomon said, and he’s limited nearly every opponent’s best player to below his season average.As Firman puts his stick in Solomon’s chest, the attack feels where that is and tries to lead him one way and cut back the other. His best ability is change of direction, Solomon said, which also comes in useful in an offense typically piloted up top by senior midfielders Sergio Salcido or Nick Mariano. He looks to those two to dictate where he should go. And goalies are aware of where he is on the field.“He’s always moving, you have to be aware of where he is, telling defenders,” Syracuse goalie Evan Molloy said. “A lot of guys catch the ball, wait, analyze the situation. Mariano is like that. But Nate catches and goes right away. … So, he’s pretty hard to guard in that sense.“He always keeps you on your toes.” Comments Published on April 26, 2017 at 12:22 am Contact Sam: sjfortie@syr.edu | @Sam4TRlast_img read more