Opinion Paulinho & Coutinho’s Brazil heroics leave Barcelona dreaming Daniel Edwards @DanEdwardsGoal Last updated 2 years ago 11:15 9/1/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(12) NELSON ALMEIDA Opinion Brazil v Ecuador Brazil Ecuador WC Qualification South America The pair might just be lining up together at Camp Nou after all, and they are a duo who can provide the goals from midfield Barca so sorely need On a night where Alexis Sanchez, Luis Suarez, Lionel Messi, Neymar and Edinson Cavani all drew a blank, there was a goal for one of South America’s more unfamiliar scoring presences. Paulinho kept up his impeccable record in front of the net for Tite’s Brazil and alongside Philippe Coutinho drew smiles from more than one Barcelona fan in the process. Paulinho stood out, rather unfairly, as one of the more-maligned transfers of the window that slammed shut everywhere but in Spain on Thursday. Unfairly because the roving midfielder has proved himself a fierce, proficient competitor throughout his career. A disastrous spell at Tottenham is the exception that does not prove the rule. Paulinho was the inspiration behind Corinthians’ 2012 Copa Libertadores triumph and made himself a cult hero with Guanghzhou Evergrande with his consistently excellent performances. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Brazil, too, know that they can count on the 29-year-old when they need inspiration and the likes of Neymar and Gabriel Jesus cannot provide it. Thursday’s strike to open the scoring in a 2-0 victory over Ecuador was his fifth of this World Cup qualifying campaign, putting him level with Paolo Guerrero and James Rodriguez in the scoring charts and, incredibly, just one behind Neymar himself. The goal itself was typical Paulinho. Lurking near the penalty spot for a corner after Brazil had fruitlessly tried to break down their opponents for almost 70 minutes, the midfielder anticipated perfectly the flight of the ball to leave himself open with just goalkeeper Maximo Banguera in his path. Banguera had no chance as Paulinho fired home, opening up the game and sending the Selecao on the way to a ninth straight qualifying victory since Tite took over. If the midfielder’s impact was pure industry and timing, Coutinho added a touch of class to end the game as a contest. Bursting in from midfield, the Liverpool playmaker arrived perfectly to latch on to Gabriel Jesus’ header after the striker had tormented his marker with a beautiful flick. Coutinho barely blinked as he fired past Banguera, rich reward for an accomplished turn pulling the strings from the middle. Industry and art: Paulinho and Coutinho represent two aspects of the game from which Barcelona would surely benefit. One is already on board, while the Catalans are gearing up for a final offensive on Friday to twist Liverpool’s arm and force the sale they so dearly desire. In the Brazil pair, they will have a base in midfield that has been sorely lacking in recent years.Paulinho’s set-piece prowess in particular can only enthuse a team that is historically inept, Messi’s free-kick bombs notwithstanding, at inventing goals from dead-ball situations. While it may be premature to say the Brazilian could prove their answer to Sergio ‘Last Minute’ Ramos, he is another weapon in an armoury that has become severely limited in range.An overwhelming percentage of Barca’s goals have come from just three men in recent years, the famed MSN that was so rudely broken up with Neymar’s exit to Paris Saint-Germain. Ousmane Dembele covers that base on the left side of the attack, but the MSN alone was not enough to deliver titles last year and this modified version may not be enough this time round.The club need a new approach, and a new angle of attack that can start further down the pitch if those up front are misfiring. Real Madrid have that in spades; now with Paulinho and, whisper it quietly, Coutinho, Barca will have two midfielders that know exactly where the goal is.
Honda to shut down UK plantChristopher Jue/Getty ImagesJapanese carmaker Honda Motor Co. is set to shut down its plant in Swindon, England, in 2022, according to multiple media reports. The automaker is known to make its popular Civic model at this plant and the move will put over 3,500 jobs at risk.Sky News journalist Mark Kleinman broke the news on Twitter and said that the company would make the announcement on Tuesday, February 19. While the company is likely to shutter the plant, its European HQ will remain in the UK.Honda hasn’t specifically spoken of its decision saying that it would not make a comment “at this stage,” but lawmaker Justin Tomlinson confirmed the news through a series of tweets. “We take our responsibilities to our associates very seriously and will always communicate any significant news with them first,” Honda said in a statement.Tomlinson shed light on the reports and said that Honda had decided to shut down the Swindon plant due to global business trends. He said that he had spoken to the officials at the firm who explained that the decision “is based on global trends and not Brexit as all European market production will consolidate in Japan in 2021.”He added: “Honda will be consulting with all staff and there is not expected to be any job losses or changes in production until 2021.”The Swindon plant is known to be a busy one with about 100,000 Civic cars being produced for the global market. In fact, Ian Howells, Honda Europe’s senior vice-president, even earlier told the BBC that the carmaker planned to convert the particular plant into a global production hub for the civic.The UK forms part of our global network of manufacturing plants, so the only place we produce the vehicle we produce at Swindon is in Swindon itself, he had said. “The logistics of moving a factory the size of Swindon would be huge and as far as we’re concerned, we’re right behind supporting continued production at Swindon.”Even though Honda may have specified that the move was a business decision, many believe that companies have increasingly grown jittery around the looming Brexit on March 29. This had resulted in many brands moving out of the UK or deferring their investment plans in the region.Just a few days ago, Nissan said that it had cancelled its plans to build a new SUV at its plant in Sunderland, England. While the Japanese company said that it had made the decision “for business reasons,” it did explain that “the continued uncertainty around the U.K.’s future relationship with the EU is not helping companies like ours to plan for the future,” reported USA Today.Ford has also said that if the Brexit went through without a deal on future relations, it would be “catastrophic for the U.K. auto industry and Ford’s manufacturing operations in the country.” The company also spoke British prime minister Theresa May and said that that it may move some production out of the country due to Brexit, a source told the Irish Times.
Prothom Alo File PhotoThe High Court on Monday directed the city corporations in Dhaka to remove garbage in the capital between 10:00pm and 6:00am through covered vans, reports UNB.A bench of justice Kazi Reza-Ul Haque and justice Mohammad Ullah passed the order after hearing a writ petition filed by Supreme Court lawyer Mahfuzur Rahman.Mahfuzur Rahman filed the writ with an article headlined “378 open trucks spreading garbage in city” published in a national daily in September.
DGHSThe government on Sunday raised the dengue death toll to 40, reports UNB.Thirty-nine of the deaths were recorded at hospitals in Dhaka city, according to the Health Emergency Operation Centre and Control Room of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) said.Ten of the deaths occurred in August while 24 deaths were recorded in July, the control room says.Since January, 41,178 people were hospitalised with dengue. Of them, 32,384 had made full recoveries.Currently, 8,754 patients, including children, are being treated at hospitals across the country for dengue.In the last 24 hours, the control room said 2,334 dengue patients were admitted to hospitals. Of these, 981 cases were in the capital city alone.
Kolkata: Mayor Sovan Chatterjee reiterated on Wednesday that the KMC has not waived tax and will not do so for any agency so that the revenue collection of the civic body is not jeopardized by any means.Responding to an allegation from Congress councillor Prakash Upadhyay, who alleged that the KMC is hesitant in mopping up the exorbitant dues of Kolkata Port Trust, Chatterjee at the monthly meeting said: “We will not allow any agency to keep tax dues and will collect it in full amount. The KoPT has already paid us an ad hoc amount of Rs 50 crore. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsPresently, we are trying to obtain the tax due records prior to 2012-13. Some documents in this regard are not tallying with the records of KoPT. We have asked the KoPT to share their records for this time period and will facilitatefurther course of action accordingly.”The Mayor further added that a tripartile meeting in this regard has been held recently with Urban Development minister Firhad Hakim, KMC and KoPTregarding dues.Congress councillor Prakash Upadhyay had demanded an answer from the Mayor regarding what measures have been taken by the civic body to collect tax dues of Rs 422 crore Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedfrom the KoPT.Speaking on the matter, Vinit Kumar, KoPT chairman said: “In a recent meeting with the KMC and state Urban Development andMunicipal Affairs minister, it has been decided that that some settlement will be made concerning the old tax dues. After 2012-13, there were dues of around Rs 150 crore out of which KoPT has already paid Rs 50 crore, three to four months back to the civic body. For the rest of the amount, talks are on.”