1 Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey will be sidelined for around a month, Arsene Wenger has confirmed.The Welshman had to be replaced after pulling up with a hamstring problem during the Gunners’ Champions League win over Bayern Munich.Wenger said: “[Ramsey] had a scan today but he’s out. I believe he will be out until after the next international break.”Ramsey, 24, who opened his Premier League account with a goal in the club’s 3-0 win at Watford last week, has played 13 times for Wenger’s side this season, but he will not be involved against Everton on Saturday.The French boss feels Ramsey’s involvement with the Welsh national team, who qualified for Euro 2014 earlier this month, has contributed to Ramsey’s latest problem.“With the [last] international break, the fact that he played against Andorra certainly cost Bale and him as well.”He said second-choice goalkeeper David Ospina is also set to be unavailable until ‘the next international break’, whilst also adding that Tomas Rosicky and English duo Jack Wilshere and Danny Welbeck will be absent until 2016.“For them, you can say around the New Year.” Aaron Ramsey scored his first Arsenal goal of the season at Watford last week
Arsenal are plotting a move for former academy prodigy Oguzhan Ozyakup, claim reports in Turkey.The Gunners sold the midfielder to Besiktas in 2012 for around £350,000 but his performances for the Turkish giants over the last year-and-a-half have caught the eye of his former employers.According to AMK, Arsenal sent scouts to watch Ozyakup score the winner in Besiktas’ 1-0 win over Bursaspor on Sunday.Despite having plenty of midfield options, Arsenal remain on the lookout for a deep-lying midfielder with Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini expected to leave at the end of the season.Ozyakup, 23, has become an integral member of Besiktas’ squad this season and it is understood Arsenal will have to pay a fee of around £8m to prise him away from Istanbul. 1 Oguzhan Ozyakup
1 Torino defender Nikola Maksimovic Tottenham and West Ham are interested in a January move for Torino defender Nikola Maksimovic, according to reports in Italy.The Serbian centre-back is said to be available for around £12m and both the London clubs, as well as Italian side Napoli, are said to be keen to make a move in the winter transfer window.The 24-year-old has been injured since the start of September but that is not thought to have dampened interest in a player who has been compared to Nemanja Vidic in the past.Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool have all been linked with Maksimovic but Tuttosport claim Tottenham, West Ham and Napoli are all leading the race – with the latter already said to have lodged a bid for his services.
Manchester United were one of the favourites for the Premier League title a month ago but a run of no wins in six Premier League games has left them in sixth place and nine points off the top.Leicester still don’t seem to be falling away, Arsenal and Manchester City are going from strength to strength and Tottenham have shot up the league to emerge as genuine contenders.United meanwhile have stalled so badly that Louis van Gaal is being portrayed as a dead man walking as the shadow of Jose Mourinho looms large over Old Trafford.However, with the unpredictability of the Premier League this season, a run of three successive wins will put the Red Devils firmly back in the title frame.But what do the 20-time champions need to do to be in with a chance of lifting title number 21 in May? Click the arrow above, right, to see the five areas that are in most need of addressing. 5 Express yourselves – Van Gaal needs to remove the shackles put on his players and allow them to express themselves. Anthony Martial needs to be allowed to run at players, Wayne Rooney is at his best when he is running wherever he likes and the team as a whole is more dangerous when looking for a shot rather than a pass. Do not be afraid to ‘Attack! Attack! Attack!’ – It has been a rarity under Van Gaal, but against Chelsea on Monday night Manchester United showed glimpses of the side that Sir Alex Ferguson built. Yes, they did not win but they exploded out of the blocks, hitting the woodwork twice within the opening 15 minutes and finally got bums off the Old Trafford seats. Bring back exiled young talents – Transfers are always a tough prospect in January with clubs hiking up the prices of players but Manchester United do have options to bring back players who are out on loan. Adnan Januzaj has barely played at Borussia Dortmund and could provide a good alternative to the flailing Memphis Depay. Similarly James Wilson, who has scored twice in six games for Brighton in the Championship, could provide the raw pace off to stretch games late on. 5 Ditch the two holding midfielders – Van Gaal needs to forget about playing two holding midfielders for all games, especially against so-called lesser Premier League sides. Bastian Schweinsteiger has been disappointing and Michael Carricks powers are diminishing. Playing Ander Herrera alongside Morgan Schneiderlin would inject some much-needed running and dynamism to the Red Devils midfield. Explore the January transfer window – There are a lot of places where United need to strengthen, but the priority has to be attack. However, with Europes top talents still in the Champions League, Van Gaal would have to turn to players such as Leicesters Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez or Southamptons Saido Mane. Alternatively, the club could attempt to lure one of Real Madrids unhappy stars, but it is likely a transfer of this magnitude will have to wait until the summer. 5 5 5
Richie Wellens says Manchester United’s defeat to FC Midtjylland has given Shrewsbury Town belief they can pull off an FA Cup upset on Monday night.United head to New Meadow desperate to avoid another cup shock after being stunned by the Danish minnows in the Europa League on Thursday.Shrews midfielder Wellens, however, says his side have the confidence – and game plan – to heap further misery on the Premier League giants and their beleaguered boss Louis van Gaal.“We have got nothing to lose – the pressure is all on United,” the former Red Devils youngster, who is cup-tied for the match, told talkSPORT. “We can relax from the league and enjoy tonight but, as well as enjoying it, we believe after Thursday night’s result for United that we can get a positive result out of it.“With the form United are in, we need to stay in the game and make them nervous. The onus is not on us to go and attack. “I imagine we will play five at the back. The possession they will have will push us back, but that will suit us. We will play like an away team and hopefully they will leave space for us.“We are going to have to defend well for long spells, defend patiently, not get sucked out of position, and they should leave space for us to hit them on the counter attack. We will try get to 70 minutes where we are still in the game, make them nervous and hopefully we can nick something.”talkSPORT has live and exclusive national radio coverage of Shrewsbury v Manchester United on Monday night, kick-off 19:45
By Melissa Evans STAFF WRITER The thick, dirty plume of air choking South Bay skies has sent more people to the emergency room for respiratory problems and prompted strenuous warnings from health officials Wednesday. Even healthy people without chronic conditions are at risk for asthmatic episodes, allergies, eye irritation and lung damage because the particles in the air caused by smoke are too small to be filtered by the body, doctors say. Children at most public schools have been kept indoors and restricted from exercise this week. State health officials called a press conference Wednesday to issue warnings to the public that outdoor and indoor physical activity should be restricted until further notice. “Even adults who are healthy ought to take it easy and stay in an air-conditioned location,” said Mary Nichols, chairwoman of the California Air Resources Board. The South Coast Air Quality Management District, which monitors pollutants in the South Bay and Harbor Area, also issued a warning Wednesday. The closest readings, taken in Long Beach, showed unhealthy levels of contaminants in the air most of the day, said Sam Atwood, a spokesman for the agency. The microscopic particles clogging the air have even reached significant levels inside homes, he said, adding that residents are advised to keep windows shut and use fans or air conditioning. The poor conditions are the result of a “perfect storm” of external pollutants, said Dr. Edward Bold, a pulmonologist from Torrance Memorial. The ash and smoke from the fires are irritating the sinuses, while the hot air from the Santa Ana winds is drying out the lungs. Because of rapidly changing weather patterns, this is typically the time of year when respiratory problems become more prevalent anyway, Bold said. “People need to be sure that they’re taking all of their inhalers with them when they go outside,” he said. Even if the fires are extinguished quickly, the orange sunrise and gray skies may be around for at least another week in the coastal areas because of wind patterns, Atwood said. The Santa Ana winds have blown the smoky air from the fires west, but eventually the ocean breeze will push it back inland. The Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America, based in Los Angeles, was flooded with calls Wednesday, said Francene Lifson, executive director. “We are feeling the effects,” she said. “Watery eyes, coughing, wheezing, headaches, everything.” Several workers there who suffer from asthma and allergies had to call in sick because conditions were so bad, she added. [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.“It’s a bad situation out there,” said Dr. Lee Weiss, who oversees emergency medical services at Centinela Freeman Medical Center. Weiss estimates the Inglewood hospital has seen about a 20 percent spike in respiratory-related emergency visits since Sunday, when fires began ravaging Southern California. Doctors at Torrance Memorial Medical Center and Little Company of Mary Hospital in Torrance have also received more calls and visits from patients, particularly the elderly and those with chronic illnesses. The harbor areas of San Pedro, Wilmington, and Long Beach were especially vulnerable because of wind patterns and warm temperatures, which are keeping the polluted air stagnant. “It’s not going to cause cancer or anything,” said Dr. David Campisi, a San Pedro pulmonologist, when asked about the danger. “But it certainly is going to be irritating to anybody.”
MARINE LEAGUE: Running back and quarterback rest as the Pilots get back on track. By David Saunders STAFF WRITER With a handful of players nursing minor injuries, Banning coach Chris Ferragamo did what few coaches would ever dream of doing – he rested his starting running back and his starting quarterback on the same night. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.That’s how much the team’s game with San Pedro next week means to him and a strong bench and a struggling opponent gave him the luxury to do so. Fullback Joel Panteau filled in for Josh Limosnero as the primary ball-carrier for a resurgent ground game, gaining 120 yards and two touchdowns as visiting Banning scored a 28-0 Marine League victory over Gardena Friday. “After Narbonne, we needed to get back to what got us here and we took out our frustration on Gardena,” Panteau said. “This win got us back on our feet.” Donald Hall chipped in 77 yards and a score on nine carries. Banning (7-1, 2-1) accumulated 293 yards rushing after amassing only 147 yards of total offense a week ago. Quarterback Michael Ponce did his part while filling in for Anthony Rodriguez, completing a 15-yard touchdown pass to Carlos Fernandez to get Banning on the board in the first quarter. “He was calm in the pocket and didn’t make many mistakes and that’s all I asked of him,” Ferragamo said. Not to be outdone, Banning’s defense dominated Gardena (0-8, 0-3), holding the Panthers to 176 yards of total offense, 62 of which came on a first-quarter option run by quarterback Keshaun Malone. Malone’s sideline scamper was the highlight of an otherwise hectic and at times, painful night for the Gardena signal-caller. While he did gain another 37 yards on six carries, the constant presence of Banning defenders in the backfield resulted in six sacks and an 5-for-14 53-yard passing performance. “He could be good if we could consistently give him time to throw,” Gardena coach Marshall Jones said. “When we can’t protect him, a lot of times there’s not much he can do other than run for his life.” Linebackers Josh Valoaga and Hanipale Suega led the charge for a Banning defensive unit, which played without starting linemen Vae Vae Etuati and Puncho Aiono. Valoaga had 2
AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.To avoid a water shortage, county water officials are urging people to conserve water repairing broken sprinkler heads, fixing leaks and refraining from watering lawns and washing their cars. About 70 percent of water is used outdoors, so not watering lawns should help significantly in ensuring an adequate water supply, Barrett said. “If they would turn off sprinklers, for most people, that would be an automatic reduction of 70 percent,” Barrett said. The county already has received three reports of water-wasting, including someone washing a car and a condominium complex where the sprinklers were running. The number to call to report over-watering is 800-675-HELP. Recorded information on the shutdown is available at 800-218-0018. LANCASTER – Residents are responding to pleas to conserve water in the face of a treatment-plant shutdown but more needs to be done. On Sunday, the first day of a six-day closure of the Quartz Hill Water Treatment Plant, affected residents cut back water use by more than 25 percent, from 50 million gallons to 37 million gallons. “Fifty percent every day would be ideal for the whole week. Thirty percent everyday would get us through the period without running out of water,” Melinda Barrett, county water conservation program manager, said Monday. “If it gets warmer, or for any reason well production goes down, we need a cushion.” The shutdown of the water treatment plant through Friday will extremely limit water supplies for customers of Waterworks District No. 40, which relies on the plant to supply 60 percent of its water. The closure affects some 45,000 households in west Lancaster and west Palmdale. In the city of Palmdale, among District 40’s customers, officials say they were cutting irrigation. “The city has been doing our part to conserve water without losing significant amounts of turf,” public works director Leon Swain said. “We are shutting it down as much as we can.” To increase water supply, District 40 is getting an additional 3 million gallons a day during the six-day period from two other water agencies.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
For more news and observations about crime in Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley, check out the Daily News’ crime blog by clicking here. NORTH HOLLYWOOD – The city’s Animal Cruelty Task force uncovered a grim scene yesterday while serving a search warrant at a North Hollywood home – a sick elderly woman and five of her dead cats. The task force responded yesterday after residents complained of poor conditions in the 5700 block of Fair Avenue. The woman was hospitalized and officers removed four dead cats and 17 living cats and kittens. Authorities found another dead cat in the driveway. The levels of carbon dioxide were found to be approaching a toxic level inside the home. The house was tagged for inspection by the Department of Housing. The woman was referred to mental health services. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWhicker: Clemson demonstrates that it’s tough to knock out the champ“They’re here because they know we can’t be home with our own families.” Jason, with a shadow of a mustache, wore a striped collared shirt and tie to the party, a young man with a newfound sense of what’s right. First up when he gets out of Rancho is to get out of his gang, too. Then will come high school and college, dreams propelled by his budding desire to be a lawyer. The ladies cooked a pasta meal for the 15 or so young men and their social workers and other Rancho staffers. And they brought gifts – games to share, plus sweat shirts, jackets, socks, candy and toothbrushes – the things luckier moms lovingly wrap and place under the Christmas tree. “A lot of kids don’t get to see unconditional love – these complete strangers doing something for them,” said Andy Shlapak, a lead group worker. Some come from traditional families, but many are from shattered homes, have a parent in prison or they’ve been knocked about the foster system, social worker Melissa Miller said. CHATSWORTH – It’s a curious mix: these smiling church ladies glowing in festive Christmas sweaters and these kids – some of them simple troublemakers, some of them adolescent felons. But somehow it’s quite natural, other kids’ moms and grandmas sitting down to chat with these pint-size criminals – sharing, laughing, confiding and simply celebrating the season of good will. Wednesday night was the annual Christmas party at Rancho San Antonio where guild members from Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in nearby Northridge threw a feast for these boys who are serving time away from home for infractions that range from truancy to weapons charges. “These are nice people, they’re doing this for us and we don’t actually deserve it,” said 15-year-old Jason, arrested a year ago for carrying a gun. “I think they’re great. “A lot are products of their environment,” Miller said. “They come here and they grow and flourish, but they have to decide how things will turn out for them.” Fifteen-year-old Jack’s mother has been in and out of his life. At 6, he went to foster care. He lived for a time with his mother in Louisiana, but after Hurricane Katrina demolished his adopted hometown, he headed back to L.A. At 14, he robbed a guy of his cell phone and cash so he could buy drugs. He said he was touched by the support coming from people who genuinely care that his Christmas is happy. “It means a lot to me. I never had that before,” he said.” A brick of a kid with determination in his eyes, Jack said his focus now is to do what it takes to play football for the University of Southern California. “If people like this, who don’t know you, will support you, it helps you realize you can turn around,” he said. “You can do whatever you decide you want to do.” Before sitting down to eat, the group held hands in an enormous circle, these baby-faced boys on the verge of second – or third – chances, intermingling with a crew of church ladies and a sprinkling of social workers. They prayed together, more in gratitude for what they have rather than despair for the cruel curves life can throw at a young boy. Virginia Houghton, dressed in red, sat at the end of one of three banquet tables and chatted with a couple of boys. She looked them in the eye, and they returned the respect. “It means so much to them, but it means so much to us, too,” she said. “Everyone has troubles. We’re old – that’s what they think – but they know we really care. They’re at such a vulnerable age.” “How’s the food here?” Houghton asked 13-year-old Matthew, who got caught selling marijuana at school at age 11. He shrugged. “Sometimes it’s OK.” “My daughter is in boarding school,” she told him. “She complains about the food. All she’ll eat is cheese, cheese, cheese. She’s going to come home for Christmas.” “She’s lucky,” said Jason. How old is she, another Jason asks. The daughter turned 18 in October, the same month as Jason II’s birthday. The night proved a dual celebration for 13-year-old Jose, haloed by a mass of black curls atop his head. Jose’s grown some 4 inches since he arrived at Rancho a month after he turned 12, a kid who had one problem after another in school and faced several suspensions before a judge finally stepped in. This week he heads home to East Los Angeles, to his mom and four brothers and a new sense of determination. “I’m going to show my family I can do good,” said Jose, who aspires now to be a social worker – like a lot of kids here who dream for themselves what they see in the role models who are helping them turn around. These Rancho kids share regret, hope and drive. All say they’re learning responsibility and many say it’s special attention like Wednesday night’s party that shows them a lot of people – people they don’t even know – are rooting for their success. At 14, Damontre has the body of a football player. He would have been on the field this past year at high school, but instead plays at Rancho after his arrest for gun possession. “I think it’s pretty nice that they care, that they come out and do this because they don’t have to. I just want to say thank you,” Damontre said. “I just want to say thank you because they don’t even know me.” [email protected] 661-257-5251160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!