Liberia Casinos

Liberia has been such a disastrous mess in recent decades that it would be amazing to find anything that still operated in the country, let alone casinos. However, that undervalues the resourcefulness of the Liberians themselves for Liberia’s casinos in fact amount to two.

The country was first founded as a refuge for slaves freed in the United States, so it always had something of a tension between the more educated returning slaves and the indigenous population. This continued down the years, from the founding in the 1850’s to 1980. The country was run by descendants of those freed slaves and in some ways remained in a time warp: until the 1980’s, the President and his ministers, for example, still wore Victorian clothes, tail coats, and top hats (and can you imagine that in the African heat?).

Samuel Doe, who was descended from one of the local tribes, in 1980, overthrew that ruling class, and the old leaders were executed by firing squad upon the beach. There then followed some 25 years of vicious violence in which hundreds of thousands of the inhabitants were killed, often in grossly brutal ways. This finally came to an end with a UN sponsored peace mission just a couple of years ago.

With that sort of background and recent history, plus the destitution and poverty of the country and the people, it might be surprising to learn that there are any Liberia casinos at all: But, it seems to be a fact that in such war zones and despotic dictatorships that a couple will stay open, so that those at the top can gamble the money they extort.

List of Liberia’s casinos:

– Casino Monrovia

– Casino Oceano

The Oceano has roulette, blackjack, and poker tables, as well as slots. Both of the Liberian casinos are in Monrovia, the capital.

As an example of how divided the country was (and as something of an explanation for the rage that drove the two recent civil wars), the current President is the daughter of the very first indigenous Liberian to even be elected to the national legislature, let alone anything more important. Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf is actually, by the standards of that part of Africa, over qualified to be a politician: she’s worked for both Citibank and the World Bank. Her opponent in the recent elections was actually George Weah, an international soccer player.

With the recent peace (and the involvement of the UN in its imposition means it will probably stick), it is likely that the gangster element will disappear from Liberia’s casinos, and it might be even true that the sector will expand.

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5 Mistakes Youth Soccer Coaches Make

Being a great youth soccer coach is not rocket science. You can do it, but you might need a bit of help to get off on the right foot. I’ve made plenty of mistakes over the years as a coach. Most of them weren’t fatal, but having a good understanding of the most common mistakes and how to avoid them will help you have much more fun as you develop your own winning team of soccer studs.

5 Coaching Mistakes You Must Avoid:

Mistake #1 – The No Fun Coach

Members of the media call the NFL the «No Fun League» because the commissioner has outlawed

the celebrations and other things that really make the game entertaining. Unfortunately, the same

can be said of the majority of youth soccer coaches. Remember whom you are coaching.

Remember their age and think about how kids this age see things. Put yourself in their shoes if you can and always ask yourself «Would I have enjoyed this when I was a kid?» I’ll give you a key hint here…Kids want to have fun playing soccer. They enjoy the game more when they get to touch the ball A LOT! They don’t want to stand in line.

Mistake #2 – The Survivor Coach

The basic premise of the hit show Survivor is that a group of people are left on a deserted island to fend for themselves. They are given a couple of items when they arrive, but are not allowed to bring anything with them. I have witnessed numerous coaches that come to practice with that same philosophy.

They hardly bring any equipment with them at all. Fortunately, you don’t need a ton of gear to run a quality soccer practice. With that said, having the right equipment can make all the difference between a losing team and one that gets better every single week. There are certain must-have items in your kit that so that you can go quickly from drill to drill and keep your players motivated and attentive. Be sure to bring plenty of balls and cones to every practice and things will run much more smoothly.

Mistake #3 – The Cool Hand Luke Coach

One of my favorite movie lines is from Cool Hand Luke where Strother Martin says, «What we have here is a failure to communicate.» Most coaches and parents have this same problem. Establishing a clear line of communication with your soccer parents can be the difference between a fun-filled season of soccer and a descent into the depths of hell. Soccer moms and dads can be your strongest advocates or worst nightmare. If you set up a good phone & email system ahead of time, you can bet that coaching your team will take less time, be less frustrating and be much more productive!

Mistake #4 – The Drill Sergeant Coach

Most of the drills that you find in coaching books take way too long to setup, don’t hold your kids interest and have your players standing around too much of the time. Good drills should feel more

like games to your kids. Your team shouldn’t spend all of their time waiting in line to kick the ball.

They should be actively involved in the drills, get lots of touches and be on the fast track to becoming better players. Look for drills that involve most of your players at the same time. Look for drills that minimize standing in line and maximize time with the ball at your players feet.

Mistake #5 – The Nutty Professor Coach

I am constantly amazed at the coaches I see that just show up with a bunch of balls, some orange

cones and NO plan. They either forget what they were going to do, or don’t have any idea in the first place.

In order to get the most out of your weekly practices, you need a solid plan for each practice. Ever see a coach who’s team is running around all out of control? If you don’t have a plan for your team, they will quickly develop a plan for you. Players should move from drill to drill and spend the majority of their time actually playing soccer. Designing a good practice plan can take a lot of time, but it is worth it.

Make sure that your players get a good warm up, individual skill time, group skill time & group game time in each and every practice.

In Conclusion

What kind of coach do you want to be? A frustrated, pulling your hair out babysitter? Or a fun-loving coach that is developing awesome soccer players on a weekly basis?

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Best Soccer Shoes – How to Pick the Right Pair For Your Game

The FIFA world cup is a global carnival. At intervals of four years this massive sporting event takes place and creates a great interest in the game. Football, or soccer as its known in the US, has for a long time been the most watched and played sport on the planet; every country will have their own international team. If you or your kid has an interest in playing for a local team then you will need to get your hands on the right kit. The most essential purchase would be to choose the best soccer shoes; these will help to improve performance considerably.

We should realize that there are many different types of soccer shoes now available. This gives us plenty of opportunity to find a pair that is perfect for the type of soccer we are going to play.

By searching online you will quickly come across a number of different retailers that stock the latest sporting equipment and kit. Whatever your age you can find a pair of soccer shoes online which are stylish and practical.

The actual playing surface will be the main factor in determining which actual pair of soccer shoes to buy. In Europe the games are still mostly held outside. If you are also going to play on a natural grassy surface then you should choose those trainers which feature a dozen or so studs on the base. This will help to give you essential grip; soccer is a fast game, if you were not to have studs on your shoes then you will end up sliding all over the place and may even damage your body.

If you are going to play soccer indoors then the shoe should have been designed specifically with this in mind. Studs will not be necessary as artificial surfaces will not be wet or so slippery.

All the major manufacturers of sporting shoes all produce models specifically for soccer. We can see that the top players wear designs from certain well known companies.

Nike and Adidas are still the most common sight on the feet of players from the world’s top teams. A good choice could be the Adidas Predator; this is a slightly heavy option that is great for players who need to strike the ball hard. For a lighter quicker option then go for one of the latest Nike designs.

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Top 3 Rookie Cards of the 1954-55 Topps NHL Set

1954-55 marked the first ever NHL hockey card series from Topps. Three significant, albeit working class, rookie cards came out of that set. Combined, the three played 2,915 regular season games in the National Hockey League. Two had played junior hockey together with the Barrie Flyers of the OHA. The same two would start their NHL careers with the Boston Bruins. One would be awarded the Calder Memorial Trophy as NHL rookie of the year while two of the three would go on to win the Lady Byng Trophy once in their careers.

Doug Mohns

The number 18 card in the 1954-55 Topps set is the rookie card of Doug Mohns. Mohns played his rookie year with the Bruins in 1953-54 after playing junior for the Barrie Flyers. The defenseman was an immediate success with 27 points while playing all of Boston's 70 regular season games.

Doug played in the National Hockey League from 1953-54 to 1974-75 with the Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Minnesota North Stars, Atlanta Flames and Washington Capitals. He played 1,390 regular season games. During the 2013-14 season, Teemu Selanne will pass Mohns on the list of players with the most games played, pushing Doug to the 36th position.

As a pre-Bobby Orr era defenseman, Doug's numbers are very good. He scored 248 goals and assisted on 462 for 710 points. Over 94 playoff games, he added 50 points. However, despite the high number of playoffs games, Mohns was never a Stanley Cup champion. Some say that the missing championship was the one thing keeping Doug from being inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. It may be the one thing in the vintage hockey cards world that keeps the value of his rookie card at a still respectable $ 125, book value.

Camille Henry

Camille 'The Eel' started his NHL career off with a bang in 1953-54. He scored 24 goals and totaled 39 points over 66 games with the New York Rangers to earn the Calder Memorial Trophy. The Camille Henry rookie card appears as number 32 in the 1954-55 Topps set and has a book value of around $ 80.

Despite his rookie success, Henry found himself playing just 21 games in 1954-55 before being sent down to the American Hockey League to play for the Quebec Aces. Camille then played all of 1955-56 with the Providence Reds in the AHL before making his way way back up to the Rangers midway through the next season.

Henry played in the NHL from 1953-54 to 1969-70 with the Rangers, Chicago Blackhawks and St.. Louis Blues. He was teams with Doug Mohns in Chicago for the last half of the 1964-65 season. Like Mohns, Camille never won a Stanley Cup championship. However, he was awarded the Lady Byng Trophy as the league's most gentlemanly player in 1957-58.

Over his career, Camille played 727 regular season games. He scored 279 goals and assisted on 249 for 528 points. In the Stanley Cup playoffs, Henry appeared in 47 games and added 18 points.

Don McKenney

Despite number 35 in the 1954-55 Topps set being the rookie card of Don McKenney, he played the full 1953-54 season in the AHL with the Hershey Bears. Another product of the Barrie Flyers, McKenney did become a regular with the Bruins in 1954-55. He played in the NHL until the end of the 1967-68 season with the Bruins, New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs, Detroit Red Wings and St. Paul. Louis Blues.

Don played in 798 regular season NHL games, scoring 237 goals and assisting on 345 for 582 points. He played 58 more games in the Stanley Cup playoffs, adding 47 points. McKenney was a member of the Maple Leafs in 1963-64 with Toronto winning their third consecutive Stanley Cup championship.

Like Camille Henry, McKenney was a one time winner of the Lady Byng Trophy, taking home the hardware in 1959-60 as a member of the Bruins. His rookie card is valued the same as Henry's, as well.

1954-55 Topps

The 1954-55 Topps set was the first NHL collection for the long-time baseball card producer. A common card from that set is valued at $ 40. There are 60 hockey cards in the collection with the book value for a complete set at $ 4,500. The most valuable card belongs to Gordie Howe of the Detroit Red Wings.

Winter World Cup?

Will England be playing in a 'Winter World Cup' come 2022?

Through the entire furore that Sepp Blatter has created with his obsetious comments about homosexuality in Qatar, a very important message was missed – Sepp Blatter has given his backing to host the tournament during the winter months after Qatar won the 2022 bid.

This is primarily due to the intense heat during the summer months for the Middle East country. Traditionally the tournament has taken normally taken place between June and July, but in Qatar the heat at this time can reach up to 50c.
Former World Cup winning captain and coach of the German side Franz Beckenbauer had previously raised concerns over the health risk posed by extreme temperatures.

Qatar were shock winners to host the 2022 World Cup and the decision was met with open disapproval. This issue is sure to raise more criticism.

Many will ask if the issue was raised during the bidding process and if so, was it overlooked?

Qatar did indeed mention the climate but pushed it to the background, dismissing it as a non-issue.

The idea was to build air-conditioned stadiums, and the proposal of a 'Winter World Cup' was never raised.

The question now asked must surely be: Did Qatar give misleading information during their bid or were the bidding committee aware of the implications all along?

If the committee were aware of the health and safety risk posed to players, this would only add further fuel to the fire that money played a part in the bidding process. Whispers of corruption have surrounded the bidding process; dismissed as bitterness on England's part due to losing the 2018 bid.

It should be noted here that England's free media was said to have cost the World Cup bid. Fundamentally FIFA did not award England the tournament because they do not like being investigated, but that's a point for another time.

Although there are no regulations that say the World Cup has to be played during the summer months, the potential disruption to the domestic leagues a Winter World Cup could cause are staggering.

Many top players and managers, including Sir Alex Ferguson, have called for a winter break in the past to help England in their World Cup chances, but news of a potential Winter World Cup would be met with anger.

Top clubs such as Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal would have required to release their players for up to 7 weeks to allow them participation in the tournament.

Upon their return they would be thrown into the deep end of the season with Champions League knockout stages and FA Cup latter stages.

It would also have a knock-on effect, as players would potentially only have 4 weeks to recuperate during the summer months before having to begin pre-season training.

Sponsorship for tournaments such as the Champions League would suffer from having a Winter World Cup, having to have a two-month gap between the group stages and the knockout stages. Then there would be a major sporting clash with the 2022 Winter Olympics which receives a healthy TV following.

Other questions were raised over the Qatar bid, such as the carbon footprint left by the proposed air-conditioned stadiums, and the laws that the country enforces.

FIFA also stated that it was bringing football to a country where it could make a social and cultural impact. Qatar, and Australia who were vying for the bid too, have never hosted the World Cup. Qatar has a population of 1.7 million. Australia – 22.6 million. Football (soccer) is on the rise in Australia, becoming more popular.

If FIFA wanted to make a social and cultural impact, certainly Australia was the better option?

As it stands, the impression given by FIFA's actions is that the bid was granted to Qatar with a view of making all the pieces fall into place after the acceptance. It's understandable that many Football fans are calling for the withdrawal of our national team.

As one German newspaper said, World Cup 2022 could be Qatarstrophic.

What Happened In The UK In 1992?

Breaking 1992 down into the biggest political, sports and entertainment news; here’s what happened…

The queen had both an expensive and an embarrassing year; early on announcing that she would bow to public pressure and pay income tax (the first time a British monarch had done so for over 50 years) and, at the end of the year, having her Christmas speech leaked to and published in ‘The Sun’ ahead of the big day. It was also a bad year for Manchester after the IRA exploded two bombs in centre of the city; injuring 64 people and causing millions of pounds of damage.

Politically, the government, led by John Major, made themselves unpopular on two fronts, by firstly signing Britain up to the ‘Treaty on European Union’ (many saw this as a loss of Britain’s identity); then secondly announcing it’s plans to close a third of Britain’s deep coal mines, with the loss of 31,000 jobs.

In terms of sport, 1992 saw Barcelona hosting the Olympic Games; it being the first time in 20 years that every country had been present (with no boycotts or bans in places). Linford Christie was the star of the event by becoming the oldest ever Olympic 100m champion (at 32 years old!). The year also saw ‘The Football Association’ launch the new ‘Premier League’, no-one at the time quite realising the revolutionary effect that it would have on the game.

Entertainment wise, the quirky, fast paced breakfast TV programme ‘The Big Breakfast’ made its debut. There was plenty of chaos and disorder on the show; Chris Evans being the one to lead the fun, games and competitions. The BBC were far, far less successful with their attempt at entertaining the public with ‘Eldorado’. Focusing on a community of ex-pats living in a Spanish fishing village, it was slated for its wooden actors and uninspiring storylines (later to be axed after just one year).

The big movies of the year were ‘Wayne’s World’ and ‘Reservoir Dogs’. The first being about Wayne and Garth’s battling it out with a hot-shot TV producer to save their own low-budget TV show (and also win the heart of the lovely Cassandra!). The second being Quentin Tarantino’s story of a botched robbery and the hunting out of the ‘rat’ (was it Mr. White, Mr. Orange, Mr. Blonde, Mr. Pink, Mr. Brown or Mr. Blue?).

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FC Barcelona’s Arch-Rival – The History of Real Madrid

Real Madrid – FIFA ‘Team of the Century’; 31 League titles; 9 European Cups; a couple of UEFA Cups and World Club Champions titles.

Also, bizarrely, it is a club that has in recent years nurtured the custom of sacking successful managers. Jupp Heynckes went four weeks after winning a Champions League title, Fabio Capello and Bernd Schuster won the league title before one was basically sacked for being too defensive and the other for being too reckless. The prize, though, for what it’s worth, goes to Vicente Del Bosque, current manager of the national squad, who was dismissed the day after winning the league in a room at the hotel in which his players were having their celebratory dinner!

Real Madrid originated in 1897 when a number of students and lecturers at the Institucíon Libre de Enseñanza began playing friendly matches on Sunday mornings. From these humble beginnings, Madrid Football Club emerged in 1902 – gaining its royal patronage and club name in 1920 from King Alfonso XIII. The club became founder members of the Spanish League in 1929 – when Barca won the inaugural title and El Clásico, as the fixture between the two clubs is known in Spain – began in earnest.

From the beginning, the rivalry was intense but it developed significantly during the years after the Civil War. There are, of course, many stories of the way Franco’s government promoted the interests of Real Madrid in order to develop his, and Spain’s, international prestige. Also, the manner in which Barcelona attempted to maintain a Catalan identity at a time when the language and flag were banned is well recounted. Barça became ‘More than a Club’ and the phrase Así gana el Madrid – that’s how Madrid win – became part of Spanish sporting lore.

There are two of these stories, however, that perhaps shed most light on the situation in those difficult times.

In 1942, Barcelona had won the Spanish Cup – now known as the Cope del Rey but then renamed as the Copa del Generalísimo. The following season they were pitted against Real in a two-legged semi-final and won the first match convincingly, by three goals to nil, despite having their star player, Escolá, stretchered off. The second leg, though, was rather a different matter – finishing an astonishing 11 – 1 to Madrid. Not only was the Head of State Security known to have visited the Barça dressing room before the match to tell some of the players that their right to remain in Spain was being reviewed, but also the sending off of a player in the first few minutes made sure that the rest of the team got the right message!

The other classic example of the manner in which Barcelona feel they suffered during the Franco years concerns perhaps the most famous player ever to wear a Real Madrid shirt – Alfredo di Stéfano, who remains an iconic figure in the Madrid hierarchy even today. In 1953, the Argentinian centre forward, described by Bobby Charlton as the most intelligent player he had seen, was signed by Barcelona from his Columbian club, Millonarios. After di Stéfano had appeared in a couple of friendly matches, and after an involved and underhand series of ‘negotiations’, the Spanish F.A. declared that the transfer was invalid and the player was triumphantly unveiled by Madrid. Two weeks later, he made his debut in a 5 – 0 victory over Barcelona in the Bernabéu – scoring four goals and starting his journey towards legendary status.

Even the transfer of Luis Figo in 2000 pales into insignificance compared to the machinations involved in the di Stéfano move.

With such a fierce, and continuing, rivalry between these two giant clubs, this puts the events of Barcelona’s 3-0 away victory in 2000 into an even more dramatic perspective; that was the night that the Madrid supporters rose to their feet and applauded Ronaldinho after perhaps his best performance in the club’s colours.

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