Arsene Wenger Backs Thierry Henry for Managerial Career Despite Monaco Sacking

Monaco's French coach Thierry Henry walks prior to the French L1 football match between Monaco (ASM) and Nice (OGCN) on January 16, 2019 at the Louis II Stadium in Monaco. (Photo by VALERY HACHE / AFP)        (Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)

VALERY HACHE/Getty Images

Arsene Wenger has come to the defence of former Arsenal charge Thierry Henry and backed the sacked AS Monaco boss to become a success as a manager despite surviving for only three months at the Stade Louis II. 

Henry was fired at Monaco—his first senior coaching position—in January, but Wenger sympathised with Henry’s plight when speaking at the 2019 Laureus World Sports Awards (h/t Goal’s Stephen Creek):

“If you arrive in October and the team is in a bad position, you have three months. Because in January everybody starts to become nervous that things could go very badly, so you have less time.

“That’s what’s happened to Thierry but how he bounces back will be very important. I believe he has the quality and he has the desire to make a career and the career is judged on a longer period.”

Monaco lost 11 of their 20 matches with Henry in charge, winning five times in all competitions (only two came in Ligue 1). 

Goal broke down his Monaco stats in greater detail:

Wenger contrasted his career beginnings against those of Henry, 41, who assumed his first senior role almost 10 years older than his former mentor was when he started out:

“I started my job at 33, I had a lot of promising people around me, many disappeared and some survived. You need luck and we need to work hard but it’s always very difficult to predict a career of a manager. 

“We depend a lot on the quality of the players, the quality of the club and the quality of the confidence we get.”

Those comments might suggest Henry and Monaco—despite starting his professional playing and then managerial career at the club—just weren’t the right fit.

That being said, France Football (h/t Get French Football News) highlighted ways in which the ex-France striker may have rocked the boat too much at the French Riviera:

Monaco have since reappointed Henry’s predecessor, Leonardo Jardim, as manager and are out of Ligue 1’s relegation zone after going unbeaten in their last three (two wins, one draw).

Franck Passi initially took over the team in an interim capacity following Henry’s dismissal, and Goal’s Ronan Murphy noted it wasn’t a smooth transition at first:

Wenger worked with Henry in two different stints at Arsenal (once on loan), not to mention the latter trained at the Emirates Stadium and gained experience coaching in their youth setup too.

Henry will hope for a lower-pressure setting when taking his next coaching position in the hopes that he can prove Wenger right and begin building his credentials as a tactician.

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Disgraced ex-congressman Anthony Weiner released from prison, must register as sex offender

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Former New York Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner has been released from prison.
AP Domestic

Anthony Weiner, the former congressman convicted of sexting with a 15-year-old girl, has been released from a federal prison in Massachusetts to a transitional facility in New York and must register as a sex offender.

Weiner, 54, pleaded guilty in May 2017 to  transferring obscene material to a minor. Four months later, he was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons website says Weiner was transferred from the Federal Medical Center in Devens to a Residential Re-Entry Management facility in Brooklyn. Weiner, who has a release date of May 14, most likely will serve out his time in a halfway house or home confinement.

Weiner must register as a sex offender and spend three years of supervised release. 

Prosecutors said the teen initiated the communications with Weiner via Twitter in January 2016. The girl acknowledged she was a minor, but the contacts continued over  Snapchat and other social media outlets.

More: I was ‘a very sick man’: Tearful Anthony Weiner gets 21 months in sexting case

Even after the girl told Weiner that she was 15, Weiner asked her to show him her naked body, which she did, prosecutors said. He also sent her pornography.

Weiner wept at his sentencing, saying he was sorry and that he was “a very sick man for a very long time.”

“The crime I committed was my rock bottom,” Weiner said. “I live a different and better life today.”

U.S. District Court Judge Denise Cote, however, rejected Weiner’s request to avoid jail.

“This is a serious crime that deserves serious punishment,” Cote said.

Weiner was elected to Congress from Brooklyn in 1998 and served 12 years in the heavily Democratic district. In 2010, his star rose after making a dramatic speech before Congress in which he blasted Republicans for voting against a federal aid bill for first responders to the 9/11 terror attacks.

Weiner married Huma Abedin, a longtime aide to Hillary Clinton, in 2010. The power couple had a son in 2011. But he resigned his seat that year after admitting he had been exchanging explicit messages and photos with a half-dozen women.

He attempted a comeback in 2013 via a mayoral campaign that collapsed when it emerged he was sending explicit photos to a 22-year-old woman under the pseudonym “Carlos Danger.”

Abedin separated from Weiner in 2016 and filed for divorce after his guilty plea. The relationship became a crucial factor in the 2016 presidential campaign when then-FBI director James Comey reopened an investigation into Clinton emails less than two weeks before Election Day. The FBI cited a batch of emails discovered in the Weiner probe.

Days later, the FBI said nothing new or damaging against Clinton had been discovered.

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Samsung Galaxy F kicks off a new era in flexible screens with foldable phone

While all the big players are starting to push 8K as the next screen resolution we didn’t know we needed, the real change is about to give us an entirely new design language – and a new relationship with our screens.

LG has launched a rollable OLED TV at CES this year, hitting the market in coming months. It disappears from view altogether when you’re not using it, becoming a piece of furniture that plays music on demand, no longer the eternally looming black mirror.

They’ve even added a clever ‘Line Mode’ where just a thin slice of screen is visible, letting music information and photo galleries appear in a very minimal amount of screen space.

Of course, the reason we’re seeing phones and TVs suddenly fold and roll at the same time is because the tech is finally able to handle this kind of literal flexibility. OLED panels are lit within every pixel, so designs have finally been able to remove the rigid backing and find a path towards reliable and bendable displays.

Beyond LG and Samsung, there’s also talk of Motorola launching a new flip phone under its classic RAZR brand. This time with a fully foldable screen instead of a screen and keypad.

If they get it right, that combination of nostalgia for one of the all-time classic flip phones combined with the latest in screen tech could be a big winner. After all, a flip phone could protect that expensive screen from a lot of drop damage.

Novelty or game-changer?

Some may be thinking that a screen that bends or rolls is just a novelty. But the cultural timing is well suited to a time when many are questioning whether all these smartphones have really made our lives better.

As work has gone hyper-connected 24/7 and social media has filled every last crack of quiet time, many people are increasingly eager to cut down on how often they have a screen demanding their attention.

The ability to genuinely make that screen go away – whether rolled, folded or disappeared – will bring a fresh perspective.

Many feel locked into the paradigm of the past decade that was first championed by the iPhone then spread virally across the entire globe by Android.

A watch screen has turned out to not be enough. We want something bigger to tune into when we need it. But a change in form factor really can help us to break the cycle and find a better dynamic for a more balanced daily routine.

The flat-panel era was a slow and steady rise that enabled so many new ways to interact with screens. It might take a few years, but the starting gun is firing on what flexing, folding, bending and rolling screens are set to do to our lives in the decade to come.

The reason we’re seeing phones and TVs suddenly fold and roll at the same time is because the tech is finally able to handle this kind of literal flexibility. Shutterstock.com

LG’s rollable TV disappears from view altogether when you’re not using it, becoming a piece of furniture that plays music on demand. Supplied

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Report: Anthony Davis ‘Good to Play’ in All-Star Game Despite Shoulder Injury

New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (23) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Thursday, Feb. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Tyler Kaufman)

Tyler Kaufman/Associated Press

New Orleans Pelicans center Anthony Davis is “good to play” in Sunday’s NBA All-Star Game, according to Marc Stein of the New York Times.

Stein previously reported Davis would test the injury in pregame warm-ups to determine if he would play.

Davis was injured in his team’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday, and an MRI showed a muscle contusion. Ramona Shelburne of ESPN reported the injury was considered “nothing too bad.”

The 25-year-old has also been limited by a finger injury over the past few weeks, though he deserves to play Sunday based on his production during the season.

Heading into the second half of the year, Davis is averaging 28.1 points, 12.9 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game, all of which would either tie or set new career highs. While trade rumors have surrounded him throughout the past month, this exhibition would allow him to showcase his ability without his team-related question marks.

The superstar has shown in the past what he is capable of in an All-Star Game, winning MVP in 2017 when he scored 52 points for the Western Conference squad. Although he only had 12 points last year, he can clearly put on a show when given the opportunity.

Team LeBron would have been pretty small on the court if Davis couldn’t play, with only Karl-Anthony Towns as a true center on the roster.

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Politicians squabble over who is to blame for Amazon decision to ditch New York

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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has slammed Amazon for pulling the plug on plans to set up a headquarters in the city, saying the decision caught him by surprise. (Feb. 14)
AP

Politicians on the left and right continued sniping Sunday over who is to blame for Amazon’s shocking decision last week to scuttle plans to build a second headquarters in New York City.

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., castigated New York Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for her repeated criticism of the deal.

“If Joe Crowley was still a congressman, it wouldn’t have happened,” King said in an interview that aired Sunday on AM 970 in New York, according to The Hill. Ocasio-Cortez defeated Crowley, a longtime Queens congressman, in a Democratic primary last year.

“It’s like putting a sign up that you can’t do business in New York,” King said. “Nothing is ever perfect, but in this case, it was as close to it as you’re going to get.”

On “Meet the Press” on Sunday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who helped broker the deal, blamed Amazon for reacting so abruptly to the criticism.

“I have no problem with fellow progressives criticizing a deal or wanting more from Amazon,” he said on the program. “I wanted more from Amazon, too, but the bottom line is, this is an example of an abuse of corporate power.

“Amazon took their ball and went home and what they did was confirm people’s worst fears about corporate America. Here’s the 1 percent dictating to everyone else even though we gave them a fair deal.”

At the same time, de Blasio said progressive Democrats’ criticism of the $3 billion in tax incentives Amazon received was misplaced.

“This was a deal that was going to bring $27 billion in revenue to the state and city for things like public education, mass transit and affordable housing,” he said. “And the $3 billion in incentives was only after we were getting the jobs and getting the revenue.”

More: Amazon pays no federal income tax for 2018, despite soaring profits, report says

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In November, Amazon chose Long Island City in Queens and Arlington, Virginia, as the winners of a national competition to host the second headquarters. The company vowed to bring 25,000 to 40,000 jobs to New York City in exchange for $3 billion in state and local tax subsidies. In addition to the jobs, the project was to generate $27 billion in tax revenue for the city and state.

The plans for New York unraveled last week amid progressive Democrats’ criticism of the subsidies and concerns that the new workforce would increase traffic and home prices, among other issues. Amazon feared New York politicians might not sign off on some of the approvals needed for the project.

On Friday, Ocasio-Cortez and Dave Clark, Amazon’s senior vice president of operations, feuded on Twitter.

Citing a Newsweek article, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted, “is that culture of ‘strict performance’ why Amazon workers have to urinate in bottles & work while on food stamps to meet ‘targets?’ ‘Performance’ shouldn’t come at the cost of dehumanizing conditions. That’s why we got rid of sweatshops.”

Clark responded on Twitter, “these claims simply aren’t true. We are proud of our jobs with excellent pay ($15 min), benefits from day 1 & lots of other benefits like our Career Choice prepaid educational programs.” He invited the congresswoman to take a tour, adding “we’d love to have you!”

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Amazon will not build a new headquarters in New York City, a stunning reversal to an ambitious plan that would have brought an estimated 25,000 jobs to the city. (Feb. 14)
AP

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Bryce Harper Rumors: Phillies Favorites to Sign Star as Market Has Intensified

DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 30:  Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals runs out a ninth inning double against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on September 30, 2018 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

Major League Baseball’s frigid hot-stove season may finally be ending for one superstar at least.

Outfielder Bryce Harper, a six-time All-Star who spent his first seven years with the Washington Nationals, could be moving to a different NL East team.

Per Jon Heyman of Fancred, “Things are heating up with Harper. Intensified is the word I heard. Phillies are the favorite, but word remains that nothing’s done yet. Will be a long-term deal.”

However, Heyman added that other interested teams have not been told they are out of the running. Heyman said that included the Chicago White Sox, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants, Nationals and “multiple mystery teams.”

Harper, who is entering his age-26 season, had 34 home runs and 100 RBI and slashed .249/.393/.496 last year.

David P. Samson of CBS Sports also reported Sunday that Harper could sign for 10 years and $310 million.  Jim Bowden of The Athletic said (h/t Jack Fritz of WIP) Philadelphia and Harper were “rounding third base” in regards to a new deal.

If Philadelphia crosses home, then the Phils will immediately become the clear NL East favorites.

Philadelphia has been active this offseason in acquiring catcher J.T. Realmuto, shortstop Jean Segura, outfielder Andrew McCutchen and new closer David Robertson. The Phils also gave staff ace Aaron Nola a four-year, $45 million deal.

Harper would likely slot into right field, moving Nick Williams into a bench role. That would give the Phils a much deeper bench considering Williams’ power (17 home runs in 407 at-bats).

Philadelphia opens the 2019 season against the 2018 NL East champion Atlanta Braves on Thursday, March 28. The Phils’ first game against the Nats will be on Tuesday, April 2, at Nationals Park.

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‘Huge sentiment shift’: Sydney, Melbourne auction clearances pick up

“We see the run into Easter as the best selling time in 2019, as there will be some uncertainty after Easter due to the federal election expected in May.”

In Melbourne, the preliminary figure was 54.2 per cent, the highest since the 57.7 per cent seen in the last week of September.

Separate preliminary figures from Domain, majority owned by Nine, publisher of The Australian Financial Review, painted a different picture. Sydney auction clearances slipped to 56.1 per cent from 57.4 per cent a week earlier, while Melbourne retreated to 53.5 per cent from 55 per cent.

Last month’s change by the Reserve Bank of Australia to a neutral stance on interest rates from one of tightening has boosted expectations that the next move in the benchmark cash rate will be lower.

The final report of the banking royal commission earlier this month also reassured economists of no further tightening in lending standards that could again reduce spending on housing.

These factors had lifted a range of housing market indicators – open inspection attendances, auction attendances and auction clearance rates – above their levels of November and December, said Ray White Group managing director Dan White.

“The model we operate on regarding home lending from banks isn’t going to change in a major way. That’s a huge sentiment shift,” Mr White said on Sunday.

“There is also so much talk about rates staying where they are or falling. The fact that those factors have gone in our favour has helped that market move slightly up.”

 

Need for caution

There is a need for caution, however. This improvement this week, when the scheduled number of auctions rose to 1444 from 928 the previous week is another move up, but could also reflect a seasonal bounce that market observers identify early in the new year and may not last.

Sales volumes are also down.

“Sales vols for Feb so far are -58% yoy in Syd & -73% yoy in Mel,” AMP Capital chief economist Shane Oliver tweeted on Saturday.

Official figures last week showed that new housing loans to first-home buyers and investors were at their weakest in almost seven years.

Preliminary auction clearance rates by city, week ending 16 Febuary, 2019. CoreLogic

“The data around the housing market remains weak,” said Ernst & Young chief economist Jo Masters.

Mr White said investors remain cautious, however, and that Ray White’s own volumes of sales to investors were at their lowest level in six-and-a-half years.

Scheduled auction numbers also picked up this week in Adelaide to 83 from 76 – and the preliminary clearance rate jumped to 67.2 per cent from 52.5 per cent.

In Canberra, the number of auctions also picked up, to 52 from 46 but the initial clearance rate slipped to 47.5 per cent from 56.3 per cent.

Credit Suisse analysts, like many other observers, say the east coast-led housing downturn has further to run and that the likely changes to negative gearing and capital gains taxes under a Labor federal government would dampen conditions in the short term.

“ALP reforms are in the short term a negative for the housing market, and related sectors such as household consumption and financial services,” analysts led by Damien Boey said in a research note last week.

“However, rather than focus on the negatives, which are rapidly getting priced into stocks and housing, we prefer to think that ALP reforms will expedite the cycle,” they wrote.

“And the more quickly, or closer we get to the bottom, the more upside there will be from potential stimulus—first from the RBA, and then from fiscal policy makers. This is why we have an upbeat view on the domestic space, six months forward from now.”

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