Stipe’s late fitness test a Sailors’ ploy?, Football News & Top Stories

Lion City Sailors striker Stipe Plazibat will face a late fitness test to decide if he will be ready for today’s high-stakes showdown against Singapore Premier League (SPL) leaders Albirex Niigata.

The 31-year-old Croat is the competition’s leading scorer with 14 goals, but hobbled off with a hamstring strain in the 3-1 win over Hougang United on Tuesday.

Sailors coach Aurelio Vidmar refuted the notion that he is keeping their opponents guessing. The Australian, 53, said: “We will make the decision on Sunday morning. My interest is the player’s health. If he is going to do more damage, then we won’t take the risk.

“If this was a cup final or the final game of the season, then it’s a completely different story. There’s no question we would try to play him because if he breaks down we are going into a break.

“But this situation is a bit different, a bit more delicate.”

What is undoubtedly clear are the stakes at hand. There are just five games left and this clash between first and third in the table will have a huge bearing on the championship.

The Sailors are three points behind Albirex, champions from 2016 to 2018, but will leapfrog them with a win. A loss however, will create a six-point deficit that may be too much to overcome.

The other title contenders, Tampines Rovers, also have 20 points like Albirex and travel to face Tanjong Pagar United in today’s other match.

Vidmar, the former Australia captain and coach, remains confident of his side’s ability to hit the back of the net regardless of Plazibat’s availability.

The Sailors have notched 29 goals, with 10 different scorers. Both are league-leading numbers.

They will also welcome back dynamic midfielder Song Ui-young from a head injury, while playmaker Shahdan Sulaiman, who was sorely missed in the 3-2 defeat when both sides met last month, has also returned. He will be a threat from set pieces.

Vidmar said: “Goals are a big part of Stipe’s game, and his link-up play has been very good. But the beauty of our team is everyone is itching to play and the guys who have come in have stepped up and done an amazing job.

“That’s the commitment and competition I want in the team.

“So, we are in good shape. Shahril (Ishak) is back in the team, we have Gabriel Quak, we can put Adam Swandi there, we can put Hafiz Nor up front.

“We have options, players with different characteristics and playing styles, which is a plus.”

His team are excellent front runners too. While 26 of the 36 SPL games this term have been won by the side that scores first, the Sailors are masters of this. They have picked up the full three points in all the five matches they have opened the scoring.

But standing in their way is an obdurate Albirex defence that has kept three consecutive clean sheets and a winning mentality.

Seven of their 22 goals have come

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Atalanta v Liverpool: Joel Matip and Naby Keita face late fitness tests before Champions League tie

Liverpool have won 1-0 away at Ajax and 2-0 at home against FC Midtjylland in the Champions League this season

Defender Joel Matip and midfielder Naby Keita face late fitness tests before Liverpool’s Champions League game at Atalanta on Tuesday (20:00 GMT).

The pair trained on Sunday, but midfielder Thiago Alcantara was absent as he recovers from a knee injury.

“We have to wait until the medical department gives us a green, orange or red light,” said manager Jurgen Klopp.

Liverpool have won both of their Champions League games this season and are top of Group D.

Meanwhile, Atalanta, who reached the quarter-finals of the 2019-20 competition, have picked up four points from their opening two matches and are second.

This will be Liverpool’s first European match against the Italian side and Klopp is expecting a tough game.

“They obviously have a really good atmosphere, a good mood and are a proper fighting unit,” said the German.

“They are very well organised; play their system with 100% conviction, they know exactly what everybody has to do.

“I know how good they are. I actually enjoyed the analysis, I enjoyed watching them because it’s really interesting.”

Premier League leaders Liverpool will be playing their sixth game in 18 days.

Matip has only featured twice this season and missed the past four matches, while Keita has been absent for five games because of a muscle injury.

Centre-half Virgil van Dijk is expected to miss most of the season with a cruciate knee ligament injury, while stand-in defender Fabinho sustained a hamstring problem in the 2-0 home win against Danish side FC Midtjylland last week.

“We have, in the moment, more centre-halves available than we probably will line up together, which is good,” added Klopp.



  • Atalanta are set to face their third different English opponent, having previously met Everton in the 2017-18 Europa League (played two, won two) and Manchester City in the Champions League last season (played two, drew one, lost one).
  • Since losing their first three group-stage games in the Champions League last season, Atalanta have gone unbeaten in their past five group-stage games in the competition (won three, drew two), including both this season (won one, drew one).
  • Excluding qualifiers, Atalanta have only failed to score in one of their past 19 games in major European competition (4-0 v Dinamo Zagreb last season), while they have averaged 2.1 goals per game over the course of this run (40 goals in total).
  • Duvan Zapata has been directly involved in six goals in five Champions League starts for Atalanta (four goals and two assists), while he scored twice in their 2-2 draw against Ajax on matchday two.


  • Liverpool have lost all three of their away Champions League matches in Italy under manager Jurgen Klopp, losing to Roma in May 2018 and Napoli in October 2018 and September 2019.
  • Liverpool have won each of their past three away games in the Champions League group stage, after losing four in
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As the Virus Rages, Some Are Convinced It’s Too Late to Stop It

COEUR d’ALENE, Idaho — The congregation of Candlelight Christian Fellowship gathered around tables in the church sanctuary one night last week to sip coffee and grapple with theological questions. From down the hall came the laughter of dozens of children at play.

With a potluck dinner, no masks and plenty of shared hugs, the night felt like a throwback to the pre-pandemic era except for a noticeable exception on the stage: The lead pastor, Paul Van Noy, was addressing the congregation with the aid of supplemental oxygen, piped into his nostrils from a small tank.

About a month ago, Mr. Van Noy, 60, was discharged from a hospital in a wheelchair after a Covid-19 infection brought him to the brink of death. But while that scare ravaged his lungs and rattled the church, it has done little to alter the growing sentiment among many people in northern Idaho that the coronavirus cannot be stopped and efforts to contain it are doing more harm than good.

“I think we just open up and we just let it take its course,” said Nancy Hillberg, 68, as church members mingled after the service. “Just let it be done.”

Amid a record spike of coronavirus cases and the final days of the presidential election, President Trump and his administration have expressed increasing helplessness at containing the virus, focusing instead on improvements in survivability and trying to hold the economy together. While it is a theme welcomed by many of the president’s supporters, it has proved alarming to health officials, including those at the hospital that cared for Mr. Van Noy, who are encountering rising resistance to their calls for unity in combating a pandemic that has already claimed nearly 230,000 Americans and threatens to take many more.

In northern Idaho, which is facing record cases and hospitalizations, the local health board last month repealed a requirement that people wear masks in Kootenai County, where Candlelight Christian Fellowship is.

“I personally do not care whether anybody wears a mask or not,” Walt Kirby, a member of the board, said at a public hearing on the issue. “If they want to be dumb enough to walk around out there and expose themselves and others to this, that’s fine with me.

“I’m just sitting back and watching them catch it and die. Hopefully I’ll live through it.”

In an interview later, Mr. Kirby said that he initially supported the mask mandate as a strategy to contain the virus and that, at age 90, he wears one whenever he is out in public.

But the mask requirement resulted in immense backlash, he said, in a part of the country where many people moved to escape what they see as an overbearing government.

Governors around the country, particularly Republican ones, are following the president’s lead in resisting new restrictions against a virus that has powerfully persisted despite lockdowns in some areas over the spring and summer.

Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota wrote that “there is no way

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Doping Tests Are Returning, but It Might Be Too Late

Tygart said he saw all of this as something of victory, since studies of doping prevalence from the past decade have recorded anonymous admissions of guilt from as many as 40 percent of respondents.

While the athletes in the USADA study admitted to far lower levels of doping, they expressed deep skepticism that their rivals were abiding by the rules. More than 50 percent said they believed international athletes had used the lull in testing caused by the pandemic as a doping opportunity, and 30 percent said they suspected American athletes had done so.

“Without testing, the confidence in the system goes way down,” Tygart said.

And the temptation remains. Just 42 percent of those surveyed said integrity in sports was more important than financial gain.

James Fitzgerald, a spokesman for the World Antidoping Agency, said testing numbers had been on the rise since May, though they still remain far behind last year’s figures, in part because so many competitions, where a lot of testing occurs, had been canceled. . In September, 17,643 tests were conducted, compared with 26,638 during that month in 2019.

Fitzgerald said national and regional antidoping organizations were doing their best while adhering to limits the local health authorities have placed on their activities. But he added that WADA does have other tools.

“While testing is important as a means to catch cheats and as a deterrent, it is not the only strategy available,” Fitzgerald said. “There are other angles of attack being pursued, which include intelligence and investigations, technology and research, sample storage and re-analysis, and the Athlete Biological Passport,” which can track dramatic changes in blood and hormone levels over time.

The damage to sporting integrity, though, may be done already. Studies have shown that even one cycle of performance-enhancing drugs that quickly leave the body can produce benefits that last as long as four years. That would certainly make a cycle that took place last spring beneficial at the Olympics next summer, or the Winter Games in Beijing in February 2022.

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Late pilot of downed aircraft was longtime dentist in Dyer, Chicago Heights | Latest Headlines

Plane Crash 394 MAIN

An aerial shot provided by NBC 5 Chicago shows a portion of the crash site on Illinois 394. The plane is in a wooded area and the tail is slightly visible at the top middle of the photo. 

Lawrence Jagmin, the pilot who died after crashing a plane Tuesday in Ford Heights, is remembered by some as a dearly beloved friend and family member.

To others, he was Dr. Jagmin, DDS — a dentist of more than 40 years in the Chicagoland area.

Jagmin, a 70-year-old Frankfort resident, practiced dentistry alongside his brother, Dr. Gary Jagmin, DDS, in Dyer and Chicago Heights, Jagmin Dental of Indiana confirmed.

The brothers first opened their practice in 1977 in Chicago Heights after graduating from the University of Illinois College of Dentistry. In 2006, they opened their Dyer office, where Gary Jagmin primarily practiced, Jagmin Dental’s website shows.

Multiple attempts to reach the Jagmins’ family were unsuccessful.

Ken Brodnick, a friend of Lawrence Jagmin, told NBC 5 Chicago, a news partner of The Times, the late 70-year-old was “an awesome dentist” and “a fervent aircraft enthusiast,” adding that Jagmin had a profound impact on his life.

“He was a straight-up class-A fellow,” Brodnick told NBC 5.

“Larry Jagmin was one of the most unique individuals I know,” Larry Heidemann, Jagmin’s neighbor of about 20 years, told NBC 5. Heidemann described Jagmin as a man of many skills and talents, a Harley-Davidson enthusiast and “a unique individual and an outstanding neighbor,” NBC 5 reported.

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Pfizer Says Earliest U.S. Filing for COVID-19 Vaccine Would Be Late November | Top News

By Manas Mishra and Michael Erman

(Reuters) – Pfizer Inc said on Friday it could file in late November for U.S. authorization of the COVID-19 vaccine it is developing, suggesting that a vaccine could potentially be available in the United States by the end of the year.

That timeline makes it unlikely, however, that a vaccine will be available before the U.S. election, as President Donald Trump has promised. Pfizer, which is developing the vaccine with German partner BioNTech <22UAy.F>, said that it may confirm if the vaccine is effective as soon as this month but that it also needs safety data from a 44,000-person clinical trial that will not be available until next month.

The Pfizer news, published in a letter from its chief executive on its website, lifted the U.S. stock market and the company’s shares. Shares fell slightly of rival vaccine maker Moderna Inc

, which is close to Pfizer in its vaccine development.

“So let me be clear, assuming positive data, Pfizer will apply for Emergency Authorization Use in the U.S. soon after the safety milestone is achieved in the third week of November,” Pfizer Chief Executive Albert Bourla said, noting that he published the letter to provide greater clarity on the timeline for the vaccine.

People around the world are counting on a vaccine to control the spread of the coronavirus, which has killed more than a million people and ravaged the global economy.

Fears of delays were raised after trials for two rival vaccines were put on hold in the United States in recent weeks.

Trump has said repeatedly that there would be a vaccine available before the Nov. 3 election.

When asked about the Pfizer news, White House spokesman Judd Deere said, “The president continues to be optimistic that we will have one or more vaccines very soon, before the end of the year.”

The U.S. government’s Operation Warp Speed program has spent billions of dollars on development of vaccines and treatments. It has signed a deal to buy Pfizer vaccine shots if they work.

But the rush to develop a vaccine has raised concerns that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, acting in haste, might not conduct an adequate review.

U.S. health officials have sought to assuage those concerns. Earlier this month, the FDA formalized a requirement that the vaccine-makers collect two months of safety data on one-half of trial participants.

Pfizer has been trying to demonstrate that its decision-making is being driven by science rather than politics, Mizuho analyst Vamil Divan said.

“Just getting it to the market is only a small part of it,” Divan said. “People should actually be willing to take it.”

Rival vaccine-maker Moderna could also apply for an emergency use authorization (EUA) this year. It has said that it may have interim data on its 30,000 person trial as soon as November.

Both companies are also applying for approval in Europe, where they are racing against AstraZeneca PLC

. AstraZeneca’s U.S. trial has been on hold

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MoCo Sees Greatest One-Day Rise In COVID Cases Since Late July

SILVER SPRING, MD — Montgomery County has recorded its greatest one-day increase in COVID-19 cases since the end of July, according to figures released Friday by the Maryland Department of Health.

Officials say there have been 159 new cases in the past 24 hours, pushing the total number of infections in the county to 24,174.

There have been nine triple-digit increases in confirmed cases within the last four weeks, county coronavirus data shows. Health officials say the county — which, unlike most parts of Maryland — is still in phase two of its reopening plan — needs to achieve low and medium levels of transmission, or 10 to 35 cases a day, to move forward.

But over the last three months, daily COVID-19 cases have hovered between 47 and 171. And for the first time since Aug. 2, the number of cases per 100,000 residents rose above 10. That’s the threshold at which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) considers a region to be at high risk for coronavirus transmission.

The recent uptick in cases is giving health officials pause.

During a meeting with reporters on Thursday, the county’s head of emergency management, Dr. Earl Stoddard, said the county pumped the brakes on issuing an amended executive order that would lift restrictions on escape rooms, live performances, and youth sports activities.

Stoddard said the current numbers do not necessitate reimposing phase two restrictions — at least just yet. But if there’s still an uptick in the coming weeks, he added, officials “would be having much more serious conversations” about rollbacks.

Unlike case totals, the number of people dying daily from COVID-19 has been between zero and five in recent months.

On Friday, the county did not record any new deaths linked to the respiratory disease. The death toll stands at 820.

There are, however, another 40 people that health officials believe had the disease but died before ever getting tested. For now, they are considered “probable deaths” — and won’t be added to the official fatality count until they are confirmed by a laboratory test.

Montgomery County continues to have highest number of deaths in the state. It also has the second highest number of confirmed cases, after Prince George’s County, which has 31,210, according to the latest figures.

Across Maryland, there have been 134,329 cases, 3,887 confirmed deaths, and 145 “probable deaths.” Of the 416 people that are currently hospitalized, 111 are in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).


This article originally appeared on the Silver Spring Patch

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