Got a THURST ON? Johnathan Thurston stitched up for ‘paying for his own face to be on water’

Maroons legend Johnathan Thurston has been stitched up by his Channel Nine colleagues whopaid out the premiership winner for advertising customised ‘Thurst On’ water bottles on his own airline.

The former halfback turned sideline commentator featured on Channel Nine’s Friday night post-game show after the Storm beat the Warriors 24-12 on July 29, where host James Bracey was quick to spray one of Thurston’s marketing stunts outside of rugby league.

‘Hey JT, you know how you own an airline,’ Bracey said.

‘Well, we found out what they are serving on this airline that you own, making all of the big bucks.

People piling on your planes and they get a nice bottle of get your Thurst On!’

Rugby league immortal Andrew Johns laughed in the background while Thurston replied, saying ‘you’re welcome’.

Thurston purchased the Skytrans regional airline with pilot and entrepreneur Peter Collings in 2015.

It is a regional and remote service that flies thousands of passengers across Queensland while also transporting more than 300,000kg of freight last year.

The 39-year-old’s face features on complimentary water bottles served on the regional flights, with a red label accompanied by the phrase ‘Got a Thurst On?’.

Outside the plane is a Maroon sticker of a smiling Thurston, embellished with the writing ‘welcome on board’.

Thurston played 323 games in the NRL between the Bulldogs and Cowboys and is widely regarded as one of the best halfbacks to have played rugby league.

The headgear hero signed with Channel nine in 2016 and began working as a sideline reporter and panelist following his 2018 retirement.

‘JT’ laughed off the cheeky dig from Bracey, saying ‘you get cheese and crackers as well’.

Thurston’s 50 per cent share in Skytrans is not his sole business tie out of rugby league.

The former Kangaroo’s halfback also owns in excess of eight properties and a $500,000 Mustang, sparked by his footy contract that saw him become the first NRL player to earn above $1million a year.

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  • 2 минуты назад 14.08.2022Sport
    Barcelona are ‘not good enough’ says Steve McManaman after scoreless draw

    Steve McManaman tore into Barcelona Saturday after their 0-0 draw with Rayo Vallecano, calling the Catalan club ‘not good enough’ and casting doubt on their summer transfer business.

    Barca opened their La Liga campaign with the disappointing home result, and McManaman was not impressed as the club dropped points with a host of big names in their squad.

    ‘They were packed on the bench, absolutely stacked with internationals, they brought five on, and they still couldn’t do anything,’ he said after the game on ESPN FC Live.

    ‘The game management was poor, they were slow, there was no urgency.

    While the former Liverpool and Real Madrid man would hope to see a better performance the next time he’s at Camp Nou, he seems more resigned to be underwhelmed by their new signings – bar their new striker.

    ‘Yes they’ve got a host of new signings, listen I love Lewandowski, I think he’s world class, but a lot of the other signings… Raphinha I’m not that bothered about, [Franck] Kessie I wasn’t that bothered about.

    ‘People like that, [Andreas] Christensen, I wasn’t that bothered about.’

    Luis Garcia was only slightly more positive.

    The ex-Barca and Liverpool midfielder acknowledged the underwhelming debuts of Lewandowski and Raphinha, who were off the mark with nine shots between them.

    Lewandowski hit the target with just one of his five shots, and Raphinha didn’t find the target once.

    ‘His first game, the anxiety – people get nerves,’ Garcia said of Lewandowski. ‘Even though he’s very experienced it doesn’t matter.

    ‘At the end you come here, [thousands of] people in the stadium, expecting [you to score].

    ‘It’s not easy when you’re in front of the goal, and I think I saw that in Raphinha in the first half.

    ‘He wants to score so much that he’s tried to put the ball in the best position, tried to score the first goal, because that’s something very important.’

    Expectations are high for Barcelona after a summer of big spending – evidently with money that they don’t really have.

    Robert Lewandowski, Raphinha and Jules Kounde all joined for at least $45 million, while Franck Kessie and Andreas Christensen joined on free transfers as well.

    Kounde is not yet registered to play, and Vallecano finished just four points above the relegation zone last season.

    But Garcia managed to find some positives with the performance.

    ‘At the end, it’s about the ball going into the net, that’s the only thing that matters,’ he said.

    ‘I think that Barcelona – It’s not the best performance, of course… but you could see that there is an idea.

    ‘At the end, the chances arrive, but you didn’t finish them. And that’s something that you should be concerned [about], but it’s not something that is gonna worry Xavi or the players.’

    Barca will travel to San Sebastian next weekend to face Real Sociedad.

  • 2 минуты назад 14.08.2022Sport
    Aaron Rodgers undervalued? Tom Brady overrated? Fantasy football is back, but it’s a whole new world

    The NFL is back, and with it, the 2022 fantasy football season.

    For all the talk about the demise of the running back, most of whom now share snaps in teams’ ongoing efforts to reduce injuries, many top fantasy players can still be found at the position.

    Even fantasy football novices can find the value in Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor, who led the NFL with 92 touches in the red zone in 2021, or Carolina Panthers star Christian McCaffrey, who ranks among the best in the game when healthy.

    Tennessee’s Derrick Henry, Pittsburgh’s Najee Harris, and the Los Angeles Chargers’ Austin Ekeler have all proven to be three-down workhorses, and none of that changes heading into the 2022 campaign.

    For that matter, the elites at quarterback and wide receiver are all well known to casual and obsessed fantasy football fans.

    Los Angeles Chargers signal caller Justin Herbert now ranks among the best passers, while Los Angeles Rams receiver Cooper Kupp is now the unquestioned leader at his position.

    The challenge for fantasy football fans in 2022 is, as always, finding value in the middle rounds of the draft and avoiding pitfalls, like injuries and sudden declines in production.

    The following is a look at some of the more undervalued — and overvalued — players at quarterback and the FLEX positions as you prepare for your 2022 fantasy football draft.



    Derek Carr, Las Vegas Raiders: Perhaps no offseason move had a bigger impact in the 2022 fantasy football season as the Raiders’ signing of Green Bay Packers receiver Davante Adams. Aaron Rodgers’ former favorite target was a college teammate of Carr’s at Fresno State, so the pair has some familiarity, and Adams hauled in a remarkable 72.8 percent of passes thrown his way in 2021. In fact, he was even better in 2020, recording a 77.2 percent catch rate as Rodgers won the first of his back-to-back MVPs.

    But the biggest reason Carr ranks among the most underrated quarterbacks isn’t his newest target, but rather, an offensive line that couldn’t possibly be any worse than it was last season. With rookie Alex Leatherwood struggling to adapt at right guard in 2021, the Raiders allowed Carr to be sacked 40 times (more than all but four quarterbacks), and yet he still posted a solid QB rating of 94.

    With Leatherwood switching to right tackle, where he was projected before being drafted, and the addition of veteran guard Alex Bars, even a modest improvement could pay big dividends for Carr and new coach, former Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.

    Matt Ryan, Indianapolis Colts: It’s easy to forget about a 14-year NFL veteran entering his first season with a new team that isn’t expected to compete for a Super Bowl, but that’s exactly why Ryan finds himself on the ‘underrated’ list.

    A year ago he finished in the bottom third of fantasy QBs with the rebuilding Atlanta Falcons. Now, on a Colts team that boasts breakout stars like receiver Michael Pittman Jr. and running back Jonathan Taylor, Ryan is no longer being relied upon to carry the offense. Throw in the NFL’s tenth-ranked offensive line, according to Pro Football Focus, and Ryan is poised for a major rebound in the AFC South.

    Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers: Yes, somehow, the NFL’s reigning two-time MVP is underrated, at least as far as fantasy football is concerned. Without the departed Adams, Rodgers is getting ranked near the middle of QBs heading into rotisserie drafts.

    But Rodgers has survived the departure of top receivers before (Randall Cobb in 2018), and now, he finds himself playing behind an improving offensive line. Not only are interior lineman Jon Runyan, Josh Myers, and Jake Hanson all capable, young players, but veteran tackles David Bakhtiari and Elgton Jenkins have a chance to return from their 2021 knee injuries early in 2022. Such a development would give Green Bay one of the best units is the NFC.

    Keep an eye on receiver Allen Lazard, who has the best chance to fill Adams’s shoes, given his familiarity with Rodgers and the offense.


    Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Following a 40-day retirement, Brady reclaims his throne as the most visible player in the NFL, and one of the most consistent fantasy football performers over the last two decades.

    But in case you haven’t heard, the man is 45, he’s lost his favorite target in Rob Gronkowski to retirement, and injuries to centers Ryan Jensen and Robert Hainsey will complicate Brady’s season significantly.

    Don’t read too far into the acquisition of Julio Jones, whose catch rate regressed to 65 percent last season in Tennessee after hitting a career-high with Ryan in Atlanta at 75 percent in 2020. He could draw some attention in the red zone away from elite receiver Mike Evans, but Brady and the Bucs needs someone to move the chains — particularly with conditioning concerns surrounding running back Leonard Fournette.

    Brady’s recent leave of absence isn’t much of an issue yet, given his track record, but his once overwhelming array of weapons in Tampa is starting to look depleted.

    Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals: With a new five-year, $230 million contract in hand, the NFL’s best baseball player should be in a good head space heading into the season.

    And given his running ability (nearly 2,000 yards over three seasons), Murray remains one of the best options at quarterback because he doesn’t need to be killing teams through the air in order to have success.

    The problem is, Murray will be without suspended receiver DeAndre Hopkins for six games, and his production suffered under such circumstances last season (just 18.8 fantasy points per game without Hopkins in 2021).

    The addition of Marquise ‘Hollywood’ Brown should help offset that loss, given that he played with Murray in college and has some familiarity with his new quarterback.

    However, the loss of receiver Christian Kirk and running back Chase Edmonds leaves a sizable hole in production. Both combined for around a quarter of the team’s targets and receptions last year not to mention 18.5 percent of the team’s touchdowns.

    Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs: His arm, accuracy, and ability to conjure up the unthinkable leaves Mahomes as one of the best quarterbacks in fantasy football.

    But without receiver Tyreek Hill, who was traded to the Miami Dolphins, the Chiefs offense has a desperate need for speed. As a deep threat, Hill occupied safeties and spread defenses thin.

    Mahomes no longer has that luxury, and he’s coming off career low passing grade, according to PFF, and had a career-high 16 interceptions in 2021.

    Nobody is going to tease you for drafting Mahomes, but he may not be the fantasy football trump card we all figured him to be.



    Travis Etienne Jr., Jacksonville Jaguars: It’s easy to forget about a guy who missed his rookie season with with a foot issue — particularly at running back.

    But the former Clemson star appears to have a hold on a starter’s job, and that not only gives him the chance to carry the football, but in all likelihood, become one of quarterback Trevor Lawrence’s top targets as well. That means Etienne can pay dividends in a PPR (points per reception) league or a non-PPR league.

    The dual-threat running back had 6,107 total yards, 87 touchdowns, and 788 touches at Clemson alongside Lawrence, who clearly has a lot of faith in Etienne.

    Furthermore, James Robinson is still recovering from his achilles injury, and Etienne may have a chance to win the job outright before his fellow running back returns.

    Ken Walker III, Seattle Seahawks: Someone has to touch the football in Seattle, and it might as well be the second-round pick out of Michigan State.

    He’s not an Alvin Kamara-type, like Etienne, but he does fit in the Spartan tradition of fantasy workhorses, like Le’Veon Bell.

    And given the uncertainty at quarterback, it’s a safe bet that offensive coordinator Shane Waldron will want to keep the football on the ground.

    Starter Rashaad Penny has struggled to stay on the field since 2018, and Walker’s durability could be the perfect insurance policy for this fledgling offense.

    Elijah Mitchell, San Francisco 49ers: Something has to give in Santa Clara, where then-offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel absolutely overworked versatile receiver Deebo Samuel in 2021.

    McDaniel is gone to Miami and Samuel now has three-year, $71 million contract, giving the 49ers ample reason to protect him going forward.

    Head coach Kyle Shanahan needs someone reliable with new quarterback Trey Lance taking the helm, and Mitchell is as good of a candidate as any.

    The former sixth-round pick was San Francisco’s lead back in 2021 (963 rushing yards and five touchdowns), and although he was’t featured in goal-line situations, he still figures to get a lot of touches in 2022.


    Cordarrelle Patterson, Atlanta Falcons: Everyone loves his versatility and speed, but at 31, it’s unlikely he will continue ranking near the top of his position in targets, receptions and receiving yards.

    He’s still a great flex option, and a true value in the later rounds, but anyone who saw him sputter over the season’s final four weeks in 2021 (just 45 touches over that time) can see his obvious limitations going forward.

    Damien Harris, New England Patriots: It’s tempting to think that Harris will be the biggest beneficiary of James White’s recent retirement, given his nearly 1,000-yard season in 2021.

    But Harris is not a pass catcher and saw only nine carries in a blowout playoff loss to the Buffalo Bills, mostly because the sizable deficit necessitated more passing from the Patriots.

    Former Oklahoma running back Rhamondre Stevenson projects to offer more as receiver (123 yards on 14 catches in 2021), so unless something changes, Harris should be regarded as a part-time player.

    Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders: The former Alabama star hasn’t done anything wrong, and he remains a talented, athletic dual threat.

    The problem is the arrival of his new coach, Josh McDaniels, who traditionally liked to use a committee of running backs as offensive coordinator of the Patriots.

    Adams’ addition also looks to take touches out of Jacobs hands, and while the Raiders offensive line can’t be any worse than it was in 2021, it’s unlikely to be a major strength of the team in 2022.



    Jerry Jeudy, Denver Broncos: Did you hear there’s a new quarterback in the mile-high city?

    Russell Wilson’s fantasy impact on receivers is well known. When he falls in love with a target, like DK Metcalf or Tyler Lockett, the rest is a formality.

    Jeudy has always been able to get open, (he’s had a 21-percent target share in his brief career), but Teddy Bridgewater and Drew Lock struggled to deliver catchable passes, and his catch rate has been a pitiful 54 percent.

    That should all change with Wilson on board.

    Russell Gage, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: With Gronkowski retired and Chris Godwin recovering from an ACL tear, Gage has a tremendous opportunity in Tampa after leaving Atlanta in free agency.

    At 6-feet, and with only nine touchdowns in four seasons, he isn’t much of a red zone threat, although he can prove effective in the open field and has a knack for getting open.

    Brady has always had a talent for finding value in overlooked receivers, and unlike the Jones signing, Tampa Bay’s acquisition of Gage went largely under the radar for most fans.

    Garrett Wilson, New York Jets: It’s still a bit early to tell if Wilson or teammate Elijah Moore will emerge as Zach Wilson’s preferred target, but the Ohio State prospect is an elite athlete who offers the second-year quarterback a chance to show off his superior arm strength.

    Best of all, Wilson is already known for his tremendous hands, having dropped only six passes with the Buckeyes.


    Amari Cooper, Cleveland Browns: After failing to meet expectations with the Raiders and Cowboys, the former Alabama star now finds himself in Cleveland, where he could be without Deshaun Watson for long stretches of the season, depending on whether the quarterback is suspended over sexual misconduct allegations.

    But whether it’s Watson or Jacoby Brissett throwing passes, Cooper will likely struggle to put op WR1 numbers. Last season he had a career-low 19-percent target rate, and that figure isn’t expected to go up alongside talented young receivers like Donovan Peoples-Jones and David Bell, not to mention running back Nick Chubb.

    Cooper has never lived up to his billing as the ‘next’ Julio Jones, and at 28, he’s running out of time to make that happen.

    DK Metcalf, Seattle Seahawks: While Jeudy can celebrate the Broncos’ acquisition of Wilson, Metcalf has every reason for concern now that he’s playing with Drew Lock under center.

    The good news is that Lock will likely make Metcalf his top receiver — a role that the massive wide receiver has handled well in three seasons while accumulating 358 targets — and it’s hard to ignore his 6-foot-4, 235-pound frame in the red zone.

    Deebo Samuel, San Francisco 49ers: One of the greatest fantasy performances in recent memory could give way to major disappointment for Samuel, who has been overworked to say the least.

    His increasing workload out of the backfield (59 attempts, mostly over the season’s second half) seems impossible to replicate for a wide receiver.

    The bottom line is Shanahan needs to find ways to limit the abuse Samuel takes, and one of the consequences of that will likely be his status as an elite fantasy football player. You don’t touch the ball 180 times in a season the way Samuel did in 2021 and expect to do it all over again the following year.



    Hunter Henry, New England Patriots: One of two major offseason acquisitions at the position for the Patriots in 2021, Henry emerged ahead of Jonnu Smith last season to become Mac Jones’ preferred tight end, particularly in the red zone (nine touchdowns, 12 end zone targets).

    It doesn’t help that he lost his offensive coordinator, but having the faith of Jones is a major plus for Henry considering that the second-year quarterback is just emerging as a competent, reliable passer.

    And given New England’s patchwork receiving corps and the recent retirement of pass-catching running back James White, Henry figures to be a bigger point of emphasis in 2021.

    Mo Alie-Cox, Indianapolis Colts: One of the biggest beneficiaries of Ryan’s arrival could be Alie-Cox, who has never had major production, but does boast good size (6-foot-5), hands, and athleticism.

    It helps that he plays in coach Frank Reich’s tight end-friendly system, but most importantly, he’s stepping into the void created by Jack Doyle’s retirement.

    The opportunity is there for Alie-Cox. He just need to capitalize on it.

    Gerald Everett, Los Angeles Chargers: Always a competent target with the Rams and Seahawks, Everett now moves to a team with an elite passer (Justin Herbert) and talented receivers, who can pull defenders away from the 28-year-old tight end.

    Everett will never be a deep threat, but he was under utilized in goal-line situations in LA and Seattle getting just 18 end-zone targets in his career.

    If that changes with the surging Chargers, Everett could become a viable touchdown threat inside the 20-yard line.


    Darren Waller, Las Vegas Raiders: Nearly 30, injuries are beginning to take their toll on Waller, who now has to compete with Adams for targets.

    Waller is continuing to battle hamstring issues in camp, and even given his obvious physical gifts, it’s hard to envision him replicating his 2019 and 2020 production, when he had over 2,300 combined receiving yards, 262 targets and 197 receptions.

    He’s still 6-foot-6 with good hands, so it’s hard to ignore him, but he’s no longer the elite tight end he once was.

    Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs: Another player who will struggle to match his past production is Kelce, a longtime favorite of Mahomes who now may see more defensive attention from safeties with Hill in Miami.

    That could also lead to more targets, but at 33, he’s got to find ways to get open and that’s only going to get more difficult.

    It’s odd that he had only four end-zone targets last season, and if that trend continues, his fantasy value would suffer significantly.

    Kyle Pitts, Atlanta Falcons: If this were just about talent, Pitts wouldn’t be on this ‘overvalued’ list.

    The problem is, he plays on a rebuilding team with a new quarterback in Marcus Mariota, and even if rookie Desmond Ridder does emerge as the starter, it’s hard to say what that means for Pitts.

    The good news for Pitts is that he’s a rare deep threat among tight ends, and offers the kind of athleticism that should translate to a significant amount of YAC (yards after catch).

    But Atlanta’s offense struggled to score in the red zone last year, and there’s not a lot of hope that changes in 2022.

    Pitts is an elite tight end on a team that will struggle to score. Even if he’s force-fed targets, his production may never quite meet expectations this season.

  • 2 минуты назад 14.08.2022Sport
    Wallabies labelled ‘massive disappointment’ by David Rennie after Argentina Rugby Championship loss

    Wallabies coach Dave Rennie teed off at a ‘disappointing’ Australian side after their ‘shambolic’ 31-point loss to Argentina on Sunday morning.

    While they were missing several topliners, the Wallabies were heavily favoured to repeat their victorious heroics from a week earlier – but the men in gold crashed to a 48-17 loss in San Juan, Argentina.

    Rennie’s mood fluctuated between gutted and livid in a scathing post-match analysis of Australia’s loss.

    ‘Massive disappointment. We conceded four tries with kicks in behind us and got dominated in the collision area,’ Rennie said when asked about the defeat on Stan Sport’s coverage after the game.

    ‘We want to earn the respect of the country and you don´t do it with performances like that.’

    It was almost astonishing in its scathing honesty, especially as Australia were missing up to eight top-line players in the match.

    That being said, it was clearly the manner of the loss, not the defeat itself, that didn’t sit right with the New Zealand native.

    ‘We had a good enough side to do the job … whoever pulls the jersey on has got to front and we weren’t good enough,’ said Rennie.

    The win for the Pumas, built on the back of seven electric tries, is their biggest-ever victory over Australia.

    In even better news for the rugby-obsessed nation, on the back of the thumping bonus-point victory they moved to the top of the four-nation standings.

    You would have been a brave person to suggest the ladder would read Argentina, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand – in that order – after two rounds of the Rugby Championship.

    Argentina raced to a 26-10 halftime lead, and unlike last weekend’s Test in Mendoza, there was to be no miraculous Aussie comeback.

    Australia had a James O’Connor try, which would have given them the lead, disallowed in the 20th minute in a baffling refereeing decision and the Pumas scored minutes later in 14-point swing.

    It proved a turning point with the remainder of the game almost one-way traffic.

    Andrew Mehrtens was shocked the try was disallowed, and of the opinion Aussie skipper James Slipper did everything right.

    ‘Surely there is nothing wrong with that. There is no other way James Slipper can make that clean-out. It’s (Pablo) Matera’s fault he’s ended up in that position,’ he said on the Stan broadcast.

    Pumas coach, former Wallabies and Waratahs mentor Michael Cheika, switched up his renowned game plan and used their contestable kicking game to expose the inexperience of Australia’s back three.

    They piled on the pressure in a physical performance with the Wallabies, missing key men such as skipper Michael Hooper through personal leave and injury, bereft of answers.

    Australia got off to the worst possible start and they trailed 14-0 after seven minutes.

    Veteran winger Juan Imhoff pounced on a mix-up between Wallabies winger Jordan Petaia and fullback Tom Wright and raced to the line before fired-up prop Thomas Gallo barrelled over.

    The Wallabies regrouped and got on the board in the 12th minute after Rob Valetini charged ahead and set up a quick pick and go for skipper James Slipper to score just his second try in 119 Tests, which was soon backed up by an O’Connor penalty.

    It looked like the visitors would take the lead after O’Connor crossed after some clever interplay with Petaia but referee Karl Dickson and the TMO deemed an earlier clean-out by Slipper was illegal.

    It proved a double blow when Argentina centre Jeronimo de la Fuente scored down the other end with Emiliano Boffelli adding the extras for a 21-10 lead.

    The Pumas again jumped on some box kick confusion from the visitors with flanker Juan Martin Gonzalez this time gifted the ball to touch down.

    The half-time margin could have larger but for a miracle try-saving tackle by Marika Koroibete.

    The Wallabies were unable to build into the second half through errors and poor decision-making while the hungry Pumas marched on.

    Gallo grabbed his second and then Boffelli crossed, before their seventh try by Tomas Albornoz after the full-time siren capped a memorable match for the home side.

    The Aussie skipper was understandably disappointed about the loss, but you got the feeling there was a big sense of relief after being thrusted into the role by Hooper’s break.

    ‘We fell short of our standards today … full credit to them, they were tough,’ Slipper said after the game.

    ‘We’re excited about getting home – it’s been a tough tour for us.’

    Wallabies fans were more disappointed than angry after the match.

    Many accepted that there were a few players missing, but labelled the effort unacceptable.

    ‘Not good enough, anywhere’, a fan commented on Twitter. ‘Shambles all round’ another wrote.

    ‘This looked like a side that’s lost their captain, flyhalf and superstar inside centre in the past week. Very disappointing performance for the Wallabies, with returning players desperately needed,’ said one particularly astute fan.

    Perhaps the only redeeming part of the loss was a sensational performance of Rob Valetini in the back row, with the Brumbies star relentless around the field.

    For the home side however, the mood will be decidedly more joyous.

    Commentators were full of praise for the strong Pumas performance; with Nick McArdle labelling it ‘clinical and ruthless’, while Anthony Siebold said they completely ‘manipulated the Wallabies defence’.

    The Wallabies will now take on South Africa in two more Rugby Championship clashes, the first of which is on August 27 in Adelaide.

    There will hopefully be a few more players available again, and while admitted the lack of cohesion hurt his team Rennie said the returning players wouldn’t be a quick fix.

  • 2 минуты назад 14.08.2022Sport
    Penrith assistant Cameron Ciraldo named as Canterbury Bulldogs coach with rich five-year deal

    The Bulldogs, and Phil Gould, have got their man: with highly-regarded Penrith assistant coach Cameron Ciraldo signing a rich five-year deal with the club.

    He is set to begin with the club ahead of the 2023 season, remaining at Penrith for the rest of the season as the club chases back-to-back flags.

    Trent Barrett stood down as Bulldogs coach in May after winning just five of 34 games in charge.

    Ciraldo took up coaching at Penrith immediately after retiring in 2013 – and has been tipped for bigger and better things since being named as an assistant coach at the club under Anthony Griffin in 2017.

    The former Sharks, Knights and Panthers second-rower has a taste of the big time as a caretaker coach; but entering the cauldron at Belmore under Gould will be another beast entirely.

    More to come…

  • 2 минуты назад 14.08.2022Sport
    MLS: Bring on Benteke… and soon! Wayne Rooney’s DC United fails to score in third straight game

    Wayne Rooney’s DC United was beaten 1-0 by New England Revolution on Saturday night, leaving it stranded seven points adrift at the bottom of the Eastern Conference.

    DC fell to defeat after Carles Gil, the former Aston Villa midfielder, scored in just the 18th minute at the Gillette Stadium to send Rooney to his second loss since returning to Washington as coach.

    But – whisper it quietly – for a team in such a bad spot, there might be signs of life and reasons for encouragement in Rooney’s team moving forward.

    Most notably, Christian Benteke could well be on the roster by the time DC plays next Saturday on August 20, against Philadelphia Union, as long as his visa is approved. The Belgium striker can’t get there quickly enough.

    DC has scored twice in four games since Rooney officially took over, and both were in his first game when it beat Orland City. Washington hasn’t scored since, in three matches.

    On Saturday, it was in part due to top scorer Taxi Fountas being a substitute again. Last week there were fears on a groin issue and now, Rooney left him on the bench after he played in the All-Stars game midweek.

    His return to full fitness alongside Benteke’s impending arrival will be key to Rooney overseeing an upturn in his team.

    Furthermore, new signing Victor Palsson, a defensive midfielder, played 90 minutes on his DC debut. He signed at the end of July on a free transfer from German side Schalke and produced a promising performance.

    He nearly scored – his 60th minute shot brought a good save from Revolution keeper Djordje Petrovic and was the closest DC came to an equalizer.

    ‘It’s not going to be an overnight thing,’ Rooney said after the game. ‘I know that.

    ‘It will take a little bit of time, but we need to be smarter, the game management needs to be better.

    ‘I’m disappointed in the result but it’s a fair result, in the end.’

    But in the meantime, it won’t get much easier for Rooney and a DC side searching for its confidence.

    It’s LAFC next, the Western Conference leaders, on Tuesday night. It sees Rooney go up against Gareth Bale, Giorgio Chiellini and Carlos Vela.

    Perhaps ominously for DC, Bale and Chiellini were both rested from the team’s fixture against Charlotte on Saturday,

  • 2 минуты назад 14.08.2022Sport
    Neymar emulates Steph Curry’s ‘night night’ celebration after second goal in PSG’s latest win

    With impossibly deep shooting range, two MVPs and undeniable charisma, Steph Curry has influenced an entire league and scores of adulating fans in their own pickup runs.

    Apparently, he’s influenced one of the world’s greatest soccer players, too.

    Neymar paid a cross-sport homage following his second goal Saturday, celebrating his diving header vs. Montpellier with Curry’s signature ‘night-night’ celebration.

    In the 51st minute, Montpellier were forced into a turnover and Kylian Mbappe deflected a clearance from goalie Jonas Omlin when the ball fell to the feet of Achraf Hakimi.

    The Morrocan played it right back to Mbappe before receiving it once again on the wing, playing in a deflected cross for Neymar to head home and follow up with Curry’s celebration, putting his hands to his face and closing his eyes.

    The goal gave PSG a 3-0 lead in the match, which they would go on to win 5-2.

    The tribute comes a month after Barca’s Ousmane Dembele did the same in a preseason match vs. Juventus after both of his two goals.

    Curry responded to Dembele’s celebration at the time, calling the ‘night night’ trend ‘a movement’ on Twitter in response to a picture of the Barca winger’s pose.

    But it’s not just Neymar and Dembele who have paid tribute to the NBA’s all-time leading three-point shooter.

    WNBA star Sabrina Ionescu hit the ‘night night’ in June, and USWNT striker Alex Morgan followed suit in July after winning the CONCACAF W championship.

    The celebration has even trickled into baseball, as Brewers outfielder Andrew McCutchen did it in June after a home run.

    Curry had plenty of opportunities to do it this past postseason, as the Warriors won their fourth title in seven years and Curry was named Finals MVP for the first time.

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