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Topu says team 90% ready, fitness coach positive too

Topu said they are over 90% geared up while fitness coach Razlog also found the fitness condition positive in short preparation time

Only a couple of days left for the first official Bangladesh game in almost eight months. 

Defender Topu Barman said they are over 90% geared up while new fitness coach Ivan Razlog also found the fitness condition positive in short preparation time.

Fitness has always been a concern since the national footballers started training from October 24 ahead of the two Fifa international friendlies against Nepal Friday and Tuesday after a long hiatus.

“We are 90 to 100% ready to play on the 13th. Everybody’s fitness level has developed much more than before, along with mental growth,” said Bashundhara Kings’ Topu after Wednesday’s practice session at Bangabandhu National Stadium.

“Football is a team game. If we avail 100% performance as a team then we can cover that 10%. It may look like gap (10%) but it wouldn’t have any impact in the game,” the center-back added.

Saif Sporting Club full-back Rahmat Mia also seemed content with the improvement in 19 days. 

He said, “The condition is much better now than at the beginning. We followed the training schedule properly during corona break. That is why we passed all tests in practice.”

Bangladesh Football Federation is waiting for world football governing body Fifa’s permission before going for any…

Posted by Sports Tribune on Tuesday, 10 November 2020

It’s been four days since Razlog joined the camp and introduced GPS technology in training. 

He told the media, “I’ve been collecting GPS data which is good so far.

“They have been training well. It’s been very positive considering the short period of time. It looks very good. We just have to wait for the game day to see how good they are.”

With experience of working at professional clubs in Australia, Razlog was hired following recommendation of Human Performance Strategist and Sports Scientist Dr. Craig Duncan.

Jamie Day was earlier pleased to have Razlog among the coaching staff. 

This is the first time he is having GPS facility in Bangladesh team after two years in charge. 

The new technology wouldn’t only help compare his disciples with other teams in the world, but also pick the playing XI for the upcoming friendlies.

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Fitness coach calls to fight against street harassment after experience at Navotas City park

A female fitness coach is calling on the public to stand against street harassment after her experience at a park in Navotas City last week.

(Photo courtesy of Seannah Swift)

“Street harassment is about power, there is no right or wrong response when you’re already in a situation. Just do something for yourself, show assertiveness and strength. Ask for help if you need to. Be also vigilant if ever you will be put in a situation like what I’ve experienced. Be alert and think of the best way to save yourself,” coach Seannah Swift said in a Facebook post.

This came after Swift shared her experience while jogging at the Navotas Centennial Park on November 7 when three unidentified men, two of which were apparently minors, “physically” harassed her through “bumping on” her “left boob” and trying to intimidate her.

“What happened…was a physical harassment. Start of my training, 5:34pm… Just seconds after I turned on the GPS on my watch, someone’s shoulder bumped really hard on my chest. He hit my left boob,” she said.

Seeing the man, Swift said, she tried to avoid him after “perceiv[ing] what was in his mind” but he still blocked her “way and dang…. He was with two other guys, ages are around 16 to 20.”

“I knew it was a plan,” she continued in mixed English and Filipino. “The moment I felt I was harassed, I pushed him and punched. He got speechless for few seconds, finally he said ‘You’re brave, Miss, aren’t you?… ‘What I did was unintentional.’ [But] I stood tall and acted brave, ‘What you did was intentional, are you insane? [while] showing my fist ‘Are you going to fight?’”

After the confrontation, Swift said, she continued her activity while the men walked away.

However, moments later, she said, she saw the men again “approaching” her.

“I slowed down. I thought if I continue running fast he might suddenly stab me then jump off to the sea. So I slowed down, jogged towards where they were as there is no other way for a reroute. The same guy blocked my way for the second time, I stopped but kept a distance.” she said.

“Paulit ulit silang nagsorry but body language is giving me a hint that they are trapping me. ‘Yong isa umiikot sa likod ko (They kept apologizing but their body language was giving me a hint that they would trap me. One of them was already going behind me),” she added.

Luckily, two police officers in civilian clothing witnessed the incident and intervened.

Although the three men managed to escape, Swift expressed her gratitude to the police officers for their assistance. She said, the lawmen even tried to chase the harassers and launched a manhunt against them, but they already jumped off the Manila Bay. 

“I hope that this will serve as a warning to many harassers who think that a simple bump or catcall can be set aside. It is against women’s rights and against the

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Christian Pulisic’s fitness ‘day to day,’ says USMNT coach as Chelsea star battles hamstring injury

Christian Pulisic’s fitness is “day to day,” according to U.S. Men’s National Team coach Gregg Berhalter.

The winger has only made five appearances for Chelsea this season after suffering a fresh injury setback shortly after his return from a long-term layoff.

Pulisic pulled up with a hamstring issue during the warmup before Chelsea’s 3-0 win away to Burnley at the end of October. He had previously been out for around two months after tearing his hamstring in the FA Cup final defeat to Arsenal, in which Pulisic scored the opening goal.

DeCOURCY: Berhalter showing unexpected gift for recruiting

The current international break sees the USMNT play its first fixtures since February, with friendly games against Wales and Panama.

Pulisic joined up with Berhalter’s squad for the games despite his lack of fitness, and the coach has praised his commitment to the cause.

“Christian is in camp and is listed as day to day,” Berhalter told Fox Sports. “It really says a lot about Christian that he wasn’t playing for Chelsea but he wanted to come into this camp and be around the team and his status is day to day.”

Former Chelsea left back Ashley Cole said he expects Pulisic to give manager Frank Lampard “a good dilemma” once he is back to full fitness.

Pulisic starred at the end of last season and, with Hakim Ziyech, Kai Havertz and Timo Werner finding their feet in the Premier League, things are looking up at Stamford Bridge.

Meanwhile, Berhalter was also pleased to welcome Juventus midfielder Weston McKennie back to the squad, though he won’t have Josh Sargent at his disposal for the upcoming games.

Sargent was not permitted to leave for international duty by his club Werder Bremen, citing Germany’s current coronavirus restrictions. That had led to some concern that McKennie, who recovered from Covid-19 after testing positive in October, might also struggle to link up with his international teammates.

“With Weston, we were able to get him out of Italy and the situation is changing by the hour,” Berhalter said. “Josh Sargent wasn’t able to join the team but Weston is able to come.”

The USMNT will be looking to hit form before its 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign begins in the new year.

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Yanga SC part ways with South African fitness coach

Tanzania giants Young Africans (Yanga SC) have parted ways with fitness coach Riedoh Berdien.

Berdien joined the Jangwani giants alongside Belgian coach Luc Eymael, who was later fired at the end of the 2019-20 Mainland Premier League season after finishing without silverware.

Despite the exit of Eymael, Berdien remained at Yanga and at one time worked as the assistant coach as the team searched for a successor to replace Eymael.

The team then hired Serbian Zlatko Krmpotic, who worked with Berdien, before he was also fired after only 37 days in charge.

Berdien has exclusively told Goal he has also left the giants, who are now under another new coach – Cedric Kaze – who signed a three-year contract last Friday.

“I would like to thank Yanga supporters, players and sponsors for really making me be part of the Yanga family,” Berdien said in a signed statement obtained by Goal.

“As we come to an end of our journey, I will like to show my appreciation to all those who have supported the team in helping to build the club into the giants they are known to be.

“As we part ways I wish this great club all the best in the future.”

Yanga are currently preparing for their next league match against Polisi Tanzania set for Thursday at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium.

The Timu ya Mwananchi are currently enjoying a good run of form in the top-flight as they have managed to win five matches from the six played so far this campaign.

However, the team will miss the services of two players – Mapinduzi Balama and Ally Makame – due to injury and malaria, respectively.

According to Yanga team manager Hafidhi Saleh, both players were in line to play a role in the fixture but have now been ruled out.

“[Balama] is working his way back to full fitness and has started light exercise to make him fit, however, the medical team is yet to confirm his fitness if he can join the first team training,” Saleh told Goal.

“On the other hand, Makame is suffering from a bout of malaria and he has been excused from the squad, we will check him out if he will be available for the next match.”

Balama has become a regular in Yanga’s team where he scored three goals last season, including the game against rivals Simba SC which gave him a chance to be nominated for the goal of the season award.

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