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first_imgCeres Negros chair Leo Ray Yanson hoists the inaugural PFL trophy with matriarch Olivia V. Yanson, who is an avid supporter of the team, looking on. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOBACOLOD CITY—The uncertainty surrounding the future of club football in the Philippines has not stopped reigning Philippines Football League champion Ceres Negros from staying true to its mission of raising the country’s football stock internationally.With club football in the country at the crossroads following the pullout of several clubs over the past year and the Philippine Premier League yet to be launched, the Busmen are focusing on bigger goals next year.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Phivolcs: Slim probability of Taal Volcano caldera eruption Road to redemptionIt’s the same feeling a couple of years ago when they missed out on the United Football League title. After that disappointing campaign, the Busmen went on to their so-called road to redemption, taking the AFC Cup by storm.“We’re always looking to improve,” says Yanson. “When we first started Ceres, we knew that it would take a lot of hard work and resources to reach the level we are now and stay at that level.”Yanson has established close ties with players like Stephan Schrock, Martin Steuble, Manny and Mike Ott, Patrick Reichelt, who, in truth, can play in the top leagues in Southeast Asia, but have opted to stay on with the club as Ceres carries the Philippine flag in AFC competitions.Half the storyADVERTISEMENT Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum “We love representing Negros, we love playing at Panaad,” says Schrock. “We have an owner who really looks after us and who consider a great friend off the pitch.”But results on the pitch are just half the story for Ceres. With the AFC Champions League match against Yangon United set to be played at Panaad Stadium on Feb. 5, the club is bracing for another hosting job.Teams in tournaments of this magnitude subject themselves to strict AFC International Standards with sanctions and fines meted if those are not met.“It was quite an experience for us because we really just had to learn along the way,” says club administrator Nicolas Golez, who spearheads the local organizing committee for local matches.“We try our best to make sure that the pitch is in the best condition and improving the lighting at Panaad. It was worth all the hard work when we saw the big crowds for the matches.”Giving back to fansThrough it all, though, the club has allowed fans free admission to matches, despite all the hard work and the money that is being spent in every international tournament.It is Yanson’s way of giving back to the fans for the support and his effort to nurture the Negrense fans love and passion for the Beautiful Game.“I just want the city and the province to be recognized internationally for football,” he says.“Of course it’s all worth it. To tell you the truth, we are humbled by our results because it’s not easy. We are committed to be the best club that we can be.” Pagdanganan, Dy rule nat’l doubles Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:34Monsey stabbing witness says he ‘threw coffee table’ at suspect02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew “We’re closely following the situation in the league, but we just can’t wait what happens there,” says Ceres club chair Leorey Yanson, who has used his personal resources to make sure the club runs smoothly and is up to standard when it stages its home matches.“We have a big responsibility to do well in the AFC Champions League and maybe in the AFC Cup. We just can’t let our guard down so we really have to prepare well for these very important tournaments.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissAfter a stellar year in 2017 when they bagged the AFC Cup Asean zone title and became the first PFL champion, the Busmen started this year with a stunning run in the AFC Champions League that was only halted by Chinese powerhouse Tianjin Quanjian.A return to the AFC Cup Asean zone final, where they lost to Singapore’s Home United, left the Busmen even hungrier and more determined than ever heading into the new season. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextcenter_img ‘Mia’: Rom-com with a cause a career-boosting showcase for Coleen Garcia Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title After winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folk Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil View comments Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college No.13 lucky for Orlando Bloom Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

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first_imgThe Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Internal Affairs, in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), has jointly signed a contribution agreement of Euro 4.5 million with the European Commission (EC) to promote decentralization in Liberia.The signing ceremony took place Monday at the Internal Affairs Ministry in Monrovia.The agreement targets decentralization, which is central to governance reforms, peace building and reconciliation as well as poverty reduction in line with Liberia’s National Policy on Decentralization and Local Governance and the Liberia Decentralization Implementation Plan (LDIP).The contribution from the European Union is part of Liberia’s five-year Decentralization Support Program (LDSP), funded by the Government of Liberia, EU, UNDP, and the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA).Speaking at the signing ceremony, Internal Affairs Minister Morris Dukuly said the amount will be used for decentralization in all parts of the country, describing it as service delivery.“This support came at the right time and it’s good because it represents a good start to the country’s development but the bad side about it is that so many of our people are dying from this deadly disease Ebola,” Minister Dukuly said.Minister Dukuly made it clear that the issue of the deadly disease Ebola would not stop the decentralization process in the country. He thanked the European Commission and other partners for their contributions in helping to develop the country.“I, therefore, hope that the pillars of decentralization will  be established expeditiously in all of the regions,” he said.Discussing the deadly disease Ebola, which is leaving several dead, he said the Liberian government is doing all it can to fight Ebola, especially by avoiding the traditional practices of burying dead bodies.At the same time Ambassador Attilio Pacifici, head of EU Delegation to Liberia, said the EU support to the Liberia’s decentralization Support programme is geared toward contributing to the development of Liberia so that all Liberians will have access to services and benefits from inclusive economic growth and participation in the political life of the country.The decentralization program focuses on administrative and fiscal governance by ensuring responsive, capable and countable local governments as well as developing and strengthening local level planning and monitoring and management capacity.Discussing the issue of Ebola in the country, Ambassador Pacifici said he is afraid that with all of the other support coming in for development, Ebola has also begun another challenge for Liberia.“Ebola will not change this country right now but we will change the country with all we can do to move this country forward,” he said.Ambassador Pacifici said the European Union is prepared to work together with the Liberian government through the decentralization and help fight Ebola in the country.For his part, Mr. Antonio Vigilante, UNDP Resident Representative, said the Euro 4.5 million is 50 percent of what the Liberian government needs to carry on its decentralization.He pledged his support to the Liberian government in terms of development and the fight against Ebola. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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first_img0Shares0000Mohamed Salah is a major doubt for Liverpool’s Champions League semi-final, second leg with Barcelona due to a head knock © AFP / Lindsey PARNABYLIVERPOOL, United Kingdom, May 6 – Liverpool emerged victorious from a bruising battle against Newcastle to remain in the hunt for the Premier League title, but may have sustained too many wounds to summon a Champions League semi-final comeback against Barcelona on Tuesday.A late double from Lionel Messi in the Camp Nou on Wednesday has left Jurgen Klopp’s men with a mountain to climb to overturn a 3-0 first leg defeat if they are to reach a second consecutive Champions League final. Liverpool have overcome such deficits before in the Champions League, most famously in the 2005 final against AC Milan.But hopes of another famous European comeback at fortress Anfield were dealt a blow when Mohamed Salah was stretchered off with a head knock as Liverpool edged out Newcastle 3-2 on Saturday to move two points ahead of Manchester City at the top of the Premier League.Salah watched a thrilling end to the match at St. James’ Park in the dressing room as his replacement Divock Origi headed home fellow substitute Xherdan Shaqiri’s free-kick four minutes from time.Origi, who also scored a 96th-minute winner to beat Everton in the Merseyside derby in December, Shaqiri and Daniel Sturridge have made important contributions in a supporting role to a club record points tally for Liverpool this season.“We are always ready to get on the pitch and make a difference,” said Liverpool left-back Andy Robertson.Champions League semi-final leg: Liverpool vs Barcelona, May 7 © AFP“The lads who have been left at home and lads who are on the bench and haven’t come on, they are buzzing for us.“There’s no egos in this squad and that’s why we are where we are today and long may it continue.”However, with Roberto Firmino already ruled out due to a groin injury, few would give Liverpool any hope of overhauling a three-goal deficit without two of their prolific front three should Salah not start.Klopp therefore has a difficult balancing act deciding whether it is worth emptying the tank of his injury-hit squad once more on Tuesday or to save their legs for Wolves’ visit to Anfield on the final day of the Premier League season.“We are now qualified for the league final, which is brilliant,” said Klopp at taking the title race to the final game of the season.Despite a sensational season, Liverpool’s chances of winning either trophy are fading.To have any hope of a first league title in 29 years, Klopp’s men must hope that Manchester City’s relentless run of 12 straight league wins comes to an end either at home to Leicester in their game in hand on Monday, or at Brighton come Sunday.Barcelona will also not be complacent heading to Anfield a year on from letting a 4-1 first leg lead against Roma slip away in the quarter-finals.Messi made it clear from before the season began that the Champions League was his and Barca’s primary target in his first campaign as club captain.Lionel Messi (top) scored twice to give Barcelona a 3-0 first leg lead in their Champions League semi-final against Liverpool © AFP / LLUIS GENEMoreover, while Liverpool toiled on Tyneside on Saturday night, Barca coach Ernesto Valverde had the luxury of making 11 changes for an inconsequential 2-0 defeat to Celta Vigo having already wrapped up the Spanish title.Yet, Origi’s winner at Newcastle personified Liverpool’s persistence and refusal to give up.Four times in their last seven league outings Liverpool have won the game in the final 10 minutes.Now they must harness the same belief if Barca are to be given a fright at Anfield.“If we do fall short this season we will be back next season and we just need to keep going and keep going, and hopefully get what this club deserves,” added Robertson.“First of all Tuesday, a hell of a task, but if we can get a wee bit of luck then hopefully we will progress.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

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