PES 2013 – The Only Video Game For Footy Fans

PES 2013 by Konami launches on PS3, XBOX 360, Wii and PC this autumn and will give FIFA 12 a run for its money this year if the online rumblings are to be believed. The PES franchise has been around for 16 years and progressed through many iterations both in title and game play style, so what makes Pro Evolution Soccer so popular?

If you live in North America, the chances are that unless you are a die-hard ‘soccer’ fan, this event will simply pass you by, but if you live in the rest of the world, most specifically in Europe, then as every PES fan knows, the football season starts in August, but you only get to play out your own footy fantasies come October, when the latest and greatest version of PES hits the video game shop shelves.

It all started way back in video game time, actually 1996, when Goal Storm was released on the PlayStation. Since then, PES has moved through several naming conventions and the latest update will be called PES 2013. It will go head to head like it has for the past 16 years with Electronic Arts (EA) and their masterpiece – FIFA (12). There are really only these two games vying for gamers’ hard cash every year and if anything that makes the competition even more fierce.

You see the two games have battled it out year on year and this year PES stands a chance of getting back to the top of the pile. It has been languishing behind for the past 5 or 6 years, due in part to complacency, but also the resurgence and downright brilliance of FIFA.

The facts of the case are this your honour;

FIFA (which stands for Federation Internationale de Football Association) as the name might suggest, is an officially endorsed football game, this means that the game comes replete with all the real player names, team names, football kits, competition names and stadia. PES has never had these rights and has had to rely on an editing mode and the ingenuity of the gamers who buy the game to recreate all of the aforementioned details, liveries and stadia. This has fostered a powerful online community purely along editing interests, but when coupled with the obvious game play advantages of PES you begin to see why the popularity of the game is still so high.

So what are these game play advantages?

Well, the trade off in the licensing situation has always been overcome by the sheer beauty of playing PES – it is a game for footy fans. The actual game play has always more closely mirrored the real game, whereas FIFA has traditionally suffered in this area. Playing PES in the first few years was always pure fun, games were high scoring, but varied, FIFA always felt staged and the ball never seemed to behave like a real football, feeling much too floaty. By comparison, PES footballs have always had a weight to them and challenges between players have felt meaty.

An analogy between the two games is to think of FIFA as being a Premier League or Champions League setup, it looks polished and has endorsements coming out of its ears, but it isn’t really true football, it’s a pre-packaged version of the game designed to ensnare glory hunting footy fans, the ones who shout about how great their team is despite knowing nothing about their own teams history.

Pro Evo on the other hand is jumpers for goalposts, dirty knees and eating soggy cornish pasties on a cold, wet Tuesday night away to Barnsley! The analogy might be lost on many and that to some degree proves a point, football isn’t always shiny, multiple step-overs and pink Nike boots, it’s about the teams outside the Premier League who still have fans that turn up for every home and away game, despite not having seen their side win anything for years. That is real football and that is what Konami have tried to encapsulate, despite being based in Japan.

To a large degree they have succeeded, but the line has been blurred between the two games in recent years. FIFA has now moved very close to matching the whole ethos of PES, some say their game play is actually better, I still disagree with that statement, but certainly with the online patches available now to PES gamers, they can sidestep the licensing issue and create photo-realistic players, teams and kits – which means the two games are very much on a collision course to meet in the middle.

Konami have cheered up their fans in previous years by securing licence rights to the England National team, two Premier League teams and various other leagues and players around Europe and the world. This has undoubtedly helped, but give me a fake named Man Red (Manchester united) and quality game play any day over the FIFA version of football. At the end of the day I buy football computer games because I like to play games that recreate the beautiful game, FIFA now does it well, but PES does it better and I’m just hoping that the next instalment of PES 2013 will again give me that option to take the mighty Derby County to European Glory!

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Best Banner Advertising Tips

Online banners,they’re the billboards of the Internet – a platform for you to market your products and services to the internet world. You see them everwhere.

When you are deciding how to spend your online advertising budget, one of the most important questions you need to consider is what type of online advertising you want to buy. Banner advertising is one of the oldest method of advertising however, out of the numerous methods used for internet based marketing, banner advertising is a leading one with PPC.. Why? Well simple its because of the changes in the Google Algorithm.

The size and placement of banner ads varies according to the website on which it is advertising.

Iam going to share with you tips and strategies that must be kept in mind while working on online banner advertisements, so that maximum benefit can obtained through them.

Find a way to keep your business open 24 hours a day so you can be generating sales and leads into your business even while you are sleeping. By placing ads in the right places your business will be running on autopilot 7 days a week 24 hours a day.

Here are some great tips for choosing the best size, placement, and more for your banner ads.

1. Target Market

To start out banner advertising, the first thing you must do is choose your target audience, the people you want to market to. When you are developing your marketing campaign, it is necessary to take into consideration who will be viewing your banner advertisement. If you are selling Womans Clothes, then you surely will not want your banner advertisement to be viewed on the websites promoting various vehicle parts.

2. Designs

An effective Banner design always gets more clicks. The effectiveness of your banner is based on its layout, colors and animation. Before selecting your banner size, find out what size is acceptable on the site where you want to display your Web Banner Ad.

You can either design your own Banner or outsource it. Start making those adorable little animated gif files. Find your image, size it, and go at it, it’s that simple and if you mess up, it’s easy to go back and correct, nothing is saved until you want to. You can find design service from as low as $20, depending on the size of the banners that is…

3.Size Matters:

From my experience a wider sized banner ad is often most effective. The recommended Banner that I would use is 480×60. There’s a reason that this has remained the most widely used banner ad size. But you will find that the standard 336×280 works very well on most sites, but it may not fit the layout of the site you choose. Other wide sizes like 300×250 or 160×600 (wide skyscraper) work very well in some layouts.

4. Purchase System

So You know have your banner ready for advertising..but there just so many placement & position options..which one is the best one, and the best price?

Banner advertising is usually sold on CPM basis or CPA. CPM is COST PER impression, that means every time your banner ad appears within the page you pay per impression, I wouldn’t recommend this one, because this can be really expensive. CPA is Cost per acquisition, this is not much available now days, but it is the preferred choice of advertisers because the publisher only gets paid when a lead or sale is produced from a click-through.

Finally there is also a Monthly Rate. Which I highly recommend, that in the beginning you stick with CPA or Montly Rate. Why? Well this will help you to do some testing, and you get to control it whereas with CPM you literally will be buying however many impressions the ad can be delivered to that website and as I said, this can get really be very expensive. But If you want results to drive traffic for your website, opt for CPC or a CPA system.

5. Best Position and Placement

The placement of your banner ads on a website is a very crucial factor to engagement and click-throughs. So..Where is the best placement for a banner ad on a web page? While you might have to test out a few best spots for your banner ads, but there are few place that I think would do well. Placing your ads in the centre of the page and those that are above the fold do better than those below. Anywhere at the top of the web page can work best. But that in general above the fold and to the left seem to be the hotter areas. Anywhere below the fold, I wouldn’t recommend, is less desirable because the page will load your banner ad costing you an impression, but it may never be seen.

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Pre-Season Soccer Training – The Basics

Effective pre-season training is important for all soccer players of any age, whether you play for a team in the Premier League or your local college team and the work done in pre-season can define the competitive season ahead, making the difference between winning trophies or being also-rans.

The Pre-season soccer training schedule should be planned out by the coach in order to maximise each session. Ideally training should begin at least five to six weeks before the season actually starts.

Each training session should start with a thorough warm-up taking care not to strain any muscles in early pre-season. Ideally each session should begin with a five minutes gentle jogging followed by gentle static stretching, followed by more jogging followed by a more intensive stretching session, while taking care not to over stretch and cause damage to muscles, tendons or ligaments.

Stretching for soccer should include all major muscle groups, with a mixture of dynamic and static stretches. Dynamic stretching exercises that are perfect for soccer and include swinging the arms and circling the shoulders, twisting the upper body and swinging the legs as if kicking an imaginary ball, be careful not to over stretch with these exercises. Static stretches do not involve movement of the joint and are essential for the quadriceps and hamstrings. Ballistic stretches which involve bouncing to maximise the stretch are no longer advocated and should be avoided.

Running is excellent for aerobic conditioning and should be encouraged as improved fitness will pay dividends later in the season, this should involve distance work, sprinting and running that involves work with the soccer ball. Dribbling the soccer ball around cones or across a defined area will improve conditioning, speed and ball control at the same time.

Work with the soccer ball can be extended by spending time controlling the ball with the feet, knees and head, a perfect way to practice this is to divide players into pairs and have one player throw the ball while the other controls and returns to his partner .

Each session can be completed with a short game possibly integrating two touch soccer which will improve ball control and passing accuracy and also encourage thinking and movement off the ball. Following the game a cool down with stretching should take place to minimise aching and tired muscles which will aid recovery for your next session.

During early pre-season is it important not to over exert the players and to make the sessions fun which will motivate if players are tired not too push them too much, this can result in injury and lack of enthusiasm. Another important factor for any training session is adequate hydration, ensure all the players have a water bottle and keep adequately hydrated throughout the training session.

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Some Pearls Shine in the Shallow Waters of Qatar’s Sea of Culture

Qatar is gaining ground in the Gulf Countries’ race to become the ultimate cultural destination.

Doha is not a usual cultural destination; the only reasons why people get to visit Doha are pretty much just business or layovers between flights to more exotic destinations, even though curiosity must be growing due to all the fuss around the apparently mysterious winning of the 2022 Soccer World Cup bid.

Together with all other Gulf Countries Doha is taking part in the race to attain cultural credibility. Abu Dhabi, for example, is gaining ground with its magnificent museum projects (including a Solomon Guggenheim and even a branch of the Louvre), but Doha is moving very fast and with a precise strategy.

In the quest for popularity, Doha decided to walk the different path of preserving and enriching its very own culture by fostering Arabic art, which means showing the world that Arabic culture and art is not a world apart, but that it has always been melded with both western and far eastern cultures.

With this objective in mind, this old pearl fishing village got itself two absolute pearls in the Museum of Islamic Art and the Mathaf, but even more are on the way.

Before diving in to the discovery of Arabic arts, you may want to stop first at the Islamic Cultural Center, to get a glimpse of what Islamic culture is about.

The Babel tower shaped building is home to a cultural center which aims to introduce people to Islamic culture. On walking in you will be approached by a friendly officer who will offer you tea and will give you some booklets (in your own language) about Islam and Arabic culture. You then enter the main downstairs room and take a look at the wide graphic on the walls displaying the interaction of Arabic world history with the rest of the world, and the interaction of Islam religion with other faiths. If you spend some minutes reading the short descriptions of Islamic customs and behavior you will be pretty well ready to enjoy the rest of your visit to Doha with a deeper awareness.

The Museum of Islamic Art alone is worth the visit to Doha. Designed by I. M. Pei, the legendary Louvre Pyramid architect, the building looks like a combination of superimposed geometric shapes, culminating in a parallelepiped that almost reminds you of a Qatari woman’s face, traditionally covered by the hijab but revealing her eyes, and protecting the city with her gaze.

When you will walk in, you will be attracted to the wide windows looking over the water with the West Bay skyline in the background. While sitting and having a coffee and enjoying the view, just look around you and discover, glimpse by glimpse, the many aspects of the gravity – challenging architecture.

The collections feature a selection of masterpieces from the 10th century to the present age, organized in a precise journey through the discovery of Islamic art, but the museum also hosts an average of two big exhibitions a year featuring western masters’ masterpieces.

The Mathaf (Arab Museum of Modern Art) is the real surprise. Created to exhibit to the public the extensive H.E. Sheikh Hassan bin Mohamed bin Ali Al Thani’s (The Emir of Qatar) art collection, it opened its doors on the 30th December 2010.

Practical note: if you are new in town you’d better get clear directions to reach it, as the taxi drivers won’t be of any help and you’ll need to reach the edge of the city.

The museum is located in a white anonymous building; you will probably be the only visitor, and in the beginning you will think there is not much more than the theatrical «Animals’ arch» installations in front of the building.

However, when you wander around the many rooms, you will realize how huge and valuable H. E. the Emir’s collection is. So huge that it can’t be displayed all together at the same time, it must be organized in themed temporary exhibitions, providing extensive descriptions to enhance the visitors’ enjoyment of these works of art. You will discover that most modern Arab artists have trained themselves by looking at western art, and you will easily recognize here and there some Miro and Picasso influences, or an Impressionist’s flare. You won’t be surprised when reading the labels that most of the artists have died or are currently living in a western country.

Qatar’s ambition to become a cultural destination is not yet satisfied, and it will reach its climax with the New National Museum project, designed by no less than Jean Nouvel (Torre Agbar, Barcelona). The building will feature the petal-like shapes of the desert rose stone formations found under the desert sand, acknowledging the desert Bedouin cultures of Qatar. It’s meant to become the most iconic building in Doha, and the first thing tourists will spot when landing at the airport. But that is still in the future, we’ll talk about it in a few years time.

The Top 10 Football Teams in London

There is much to see for those who are interested in football in London. Just to clarify for any readers of this article from outside the UK, football means the ‘beautiful game’, what is commonly referred to as Soccer around the world.

London has a proud tradition of famous football teams with much competition between them to be the top club. There are generally four or five London teams in the Premier League and there are many commentators who believe that this is one of the biggest obstacles to any one of them winning the league. A ‘local derby’ between two London football teams could produce an electric atmosphere and turn current form on its head they are so well contested.

Premier League tickets are sometimes difficult to obtain, but a bit of persistence often gets results. There are a number of ticket agencies that can get them for a price.

In the last decade, both Arsenal and Chelsea have each won the illustrious Premier League title twice and reached the final of the European Cup.

Here are some details about the top 10 football clubs in London and to avoid any accusations of being partisan, they are listed in alphabetical order:-

Arsenal

The Gunners, Arsenal have played in the top division of English football in consecutive seasons since the 1919-20 season. They have been champions on 13 occasions and achieved a unique record for modern times in 2003-04 season when they went the whole season without being beaten.

Arsenal have won the much coveted ‘double’ (league and cup winners in the same season) three times, in 1971, 1998 and 2002

In recent years they have moved to a new venue, The Emirates Stadium, with a 60,000 capacity. The Arsenal Museum is well worth a visit and is open every day.

Brentford

The Bees, Brentford Football Club are currently playing in Football League I. They were founded in 1889 and play their home games at Griffin Park their home stadium since 1904. Brentford’s most successful spell came during the 1930s, when they achieved consecutive top six finishes in the First Division.

Since the War, they have spent most of their time in the third and fourth tiers of English football. Brentford have been FA Cup quarter-finalists on four occasions, and have twice been Football League Trophy runners-up.

Charlton Athletic

The Addicks, Charlton Athletic have seen better days. There halcyon days were in the 1930s and 40s. In recent years they have struggled after being relegated from the Premier League in 2005 and then from the Championship in 2008.

They play at The Valley just south of the River Thames in Greenwich. The club was founded in 1905.

Historically, Charlton’s most successful period was the 1930s, when the club’s highest league finishes were recorded, including runners-up of the league in 1937, and after World War II, when the club reached the FA Cup final twice, winning in 1947.

Chelsea

The Pensioners or the Blues, Chelsea Football Club was founded in 1905, and play in the Premier League. Chelsea have been champions three times (1955, 2005, 2006), and have won the FA Cup five times, the League Cup four times and the UEFA Cup Winners Cup twice. They reached the UEFA Champions League Final in 2008

Chelsea play at Stamford Bridge in West London and their ground capacity is 42,000.The Chelsea Museum is open most days and is well worth a visit for those interested in museums and football history.

Crystal Palace

The Eagles, Crystal Palace Football Club was formed in 1905. The team plays its home matches at Selhurst Park, where it has been based since 1924. The club is currently competing in the second tier, The Championship.

Crystal Palace’s most recent successful period began in 1988-89, when the club finished third in the Second Division and were promoted to the First Division. Reaching the 1990 FA Cup Final only to lose the replay against Manchester United and finishing 3rd in the First Division in 1990-91.

Since then Palace have been relegated from and promoted to the FA Premier League on a number of occasions, their most recent relegation from the top flight was in the 2004-05 season. This is all despite the club being almost bankrupt in July 2000.

Fulham

The Cottagers, Fulham Football Club was founded in 1879, they celebrated their 125th anniversary in 2004, and are in the top tier of English football, the Premier League. Fulham are the oldest professional football team in London.

In 2009, Fulham had their highest-ever finish in the Premier League, coming 7th to qualify for Europe.

The club has produced many great British footballers including Johnny Haynes, George Cohen, Bobby Robson, Rodney Marsh and Alan Mullery and Jim Langley. They play at the historic Craven Cottage, their home since 1896, a riverside ground on the banks of the River Thames in Fulham.

Queens Park Rangers

The Hoops or just QPR, Queens Park Rangers Football Club based in Shepherd’s Bush, West London. They currently play in the Football League Championship, and their honours include winning the League Cup in 1967, and being runners-up in the old First Division in 1975-76 and FA Cup in 1982.

Queens Park Rangers Football Club was founded in 1882, and its traditional colours are blue and white. Owing to its proximity to other West London clubs, QPR maintains long-standing rivalries with several other clubs in the area, the most notable of these being Chelsea, Brentford and Fulham with whom they contest what are known as West London derbies.

In 2007 QPR was taken over by Italian tycoon Flavio Briatore and rank among the top 10 richest sporting clubs in the world. Other major shareholders include Lakshmi Mittal & F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone. So watch this space!

Tottenham Hotspurs

The famous ‘Spurs’ side of 1961, is still reckoned by many football enthusiasts, to be one of the best football teams in English football history. They achieved the ‘double’ which had not been achieved at that time since Aston Villa won it in 1897.

This has given recent Spurs’ teams a lot to live up to. But Spurs have a long tradition of playing good football so there are many exciting matches at White Hart Lane especially with their close North London rivals, Arsenal.

In 1963, Spurs became the first British club to win a major European trophy – the European Cup Winners’ Cup. In the 1970s, they won the Football League Cup on two occasions and were the inaugural winners of the UEFA Cup in 1972. In the 1980s, Spurs won several trophies: the FA Cup twice, FA Community Shield and the UEFA Cup 1983-84. In the 1990s, they won the FA Cup and the Football League Cup and in 2008, they beat Chelsea in the final of the Football League Cup. This victory means that Tottenham have won a trophy in each of the last six decades – an achievement only matched by Manchester United.

Spurs have planned a new stadium to be completed by 2012 and it is expected to be one of the best stadiums in the UK.

Watford

The Hornets, Watford Football Club based in Watford, Hertfordshire. They play in the Championship. The club was founded in 1881, and played at several grounds before moving to a permanent location at Vicarage Road in 1922, where they remain to this day. Since 1997, they have shared the stadium with Saracens Rugby Club. Watford have a long-standing rivalry with Luton Town.

The club is best known for two spells under the management of former England manager Graham Taylor. The first lasted from 1977 to 1987, when the club rose to the old First Division from the Fourth Division. Once in the highest division of English football, Watford finished second in the league in 1983, reached the FA Cup final in 1984 and competed in the UEFA Cup in the 1984-85 season.

The second period spanned from 1997 to 2001, when Taylor took the club from the renamed Second Division to the Premier League in successive seasons. Taylor is currently a non-executive director of the club, and honorary life president alongside Sir Elton John who owned the club during both of these eras and has continued a long association with the club.

West Ham United

The Hammers, West Ham United Football Club have play at Upton Park (Boleyn Ground), in East London since 1904 having been formed in 1895.

They featured in the first FA Cup Final to be held at Wembley in 1923 against Bolton Wanderers. The club have won the FA Cup three times: in 1964, 1975 and 1980. They have also been runners-up twice, in 1923 and 2006.

In 1965, they won the European Cup Winners Cup, and in 1999 they won the InterToto Cup.

Their players are considered an important factor behind England’s triumph in the 1966 World Cup, as England’s captain at the time was West Ham’s Bobby Moore, and both goalscorers Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters were West Ham players.

West Ham currently compete in the Premier League, their highest finish in the Premier League was 5th in 1998-99.

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