Steve Komphela hosts his former club, Kaizer Chiefs, and looks to stop their march to the Premiership title knowing that set-pieces could be a crucial factor.
Kaizer Chiefs come into this game with the incentive that a victory will increase their lead to ten points atop the PSL table, whilst Golden Arrows could end the weekend anywhere between 6th and 11th spot depending on the result in this game and how teams around them perform.
So far this season, Komphela has largely used a 4-3-2-1 shape. Without genuine wingers, the width is provided by the very adventurous fullbacks, and to prevent leaving just two defenders back, one central midfielder drops into the backline when the team is building up. That man is usually Gladwin Shitolo, whose ball-playing ability is crucial to the side.
Further forward, it is usually two players in support of the vastly under-rated Knox Mutizwa. Those two players have changed regularly and Komphela will decide whether the guile of a Danny Venter is needed or the pace of Lerato Lamola working the channels.
With Kaizer Chiefs also not using genuine wingers, this could see a congested, narrow affair in midfield. Amakhosi could therefore simply bypass that area altogether and look to hit their two target men as early and as often as possible.
Set plays key against Kaizer Chiefs
Perhaps one of the most important areas in deciding this game will be set-pieces. Golden Arrows’ assistant coach, Mandla Ncikazi told the media as much on Thursday, saying:
“Credit to them for [Samir] Nurkovic, [Leonardo] Castro and [Erick] Mathoho in set-pieces. They are a real threat. I think 90% of their goals come from those situations – and we cannot take that away from them.”
Although 90% is an exaggeration, Chiefs are indeed dead-ball specialists. Aside from the three giants mentioned, Daniel Cardoso, Willard Katsande and even new signing, Anthony Akumu bring incredible height at attacking the deliveries of George Maluleka and Lebohang Manyama.
Eight of Chiefs’ last 13 goals scored in league action have come from set-plays, including netting four in one game against Stellenbosch, two against Highlands Park and their solitary goal in last week’s 1-1 draw at Black Leopards. That game saw Samir Nurkovic head home Manyama’s delivery.
Arrows don’t have a particularly tall side and could again use inexperienced goalkeeper Sifisio Mlungwana. They could therefore find themselves being very susceptible from those situations.
For this game, Chiefs should not only have Akumu ready for selection, but Maluleka returns from suspension and this game was initially pencilled in as the return date for Khama Billiat too. Amakhosi have kept their cards close to the chest regarding the latter’s availability and he looks highly unlikely to start regardless.
However, having him on the bench would give better game-changing options than just Ernst Middendorp’s go-to alternation: Dumisani Zuma. He has come on as a sub in 16 of the side’s 18 league matches, but with less impact in recent outings. He has also been introduced at half-time in many matches, therefore not giving the coach much room to manoeuvre in the final 20-30 minutes.
Golden Arrows (4-3-2-1): Mlungwana; S. Dube, Sibisi, Mathiane, Lunga; Shitolo, Phiri, Makhubela; Mtshali, Lamola; Mutizwa.
Kaizer Chiefs (4-3-1-2): Akpeyi; Moleko, Mathoho, Cardoso, Ntiya-Ntiya; Maluleka, Katsande, Baccus; Manyama; Castro, Nurkovic.
Coronavirus: Italy imposes strict lockdown in outbreak hotspots
Italy has introduced “extraordinary measures” to tackle the spread of the biggest outbreak of the new coronavirus in Europe.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced the emergency plan late on Saturday as the number of cases rose to 79.
The measures were imposed after two Italian citizens were confirmed to have died from the virus.
A dozen towns in the northern regions of Lombardy and Veneto have been effectively quarantined under the plan.
Around 50,000 people from towns in two northern regions have been asked to stay at home by authorities.
Mr Conte said it would now be forbidden to enter or leave the outbreak areas, unless special permission was granted.
All school and sports activities have been suspended in those areas, including several Serie A football matches due to take place on Sunday.
Police, and if necessary the armed forces, will have the authority to ensure the regulations are enforced.
Italian authorities fear the virus has gone beyond the isolated clusters of cases in Lombardy and Veneto, making it difficult to contain.
“The contagiousness of this virus is very strong and pretty virulent,” Lombardy’s health chief Giulio Gallera said.
The new coronavirus originated in the Chinese province of Hubei last year, but has spread to 26 countries, where more than 1,400 cases and 11 deaths have been confirmed.
Chinese health authorities reported a decrease in the rate of deaths and new cases of the coronavirus on Saturday. Some 76 392 cases including 2,348 deaths have been confirmed in China.
But outside China, cases with no clear link to that country or other confirmed cases continue to rise, prompting concern from the World Health Organization (WHO).
The head of the WHO, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said the greatest concern now was countries with weaker health systems, particularly in Africa.
South Korea has reported the largest number of confirmed infections after China and the outbreak on the Diamond Princess cruise ship off the coast of Japan, which has seen more than 600 cases.
In other developments:
- Thirty-two British and other European cruise ship passengers are in quarantine in north-west England after arriving back from Japan
- In South Korea, a fourth person has died and the number of confirmed cases has jumped to more than 550, an increase of more than 100 on the previous day. Most cases are linked to a hospital and a religious group near the south-eastern city of Daegu
- Israel refused to allow some 200 non-Israelis to disembark from a plane which had arrived from South Korea, sending them back to Seoul; the 12 Israelis on board were quarantined
- Iran reported its fifth death from the disease, and ordered the closure of schools, universities and cultural centres in 14 provinces
The new virus, which originated last year in Hubei province in China, causes a respiratory disease called Covid-19.
Fever, fatigue and a dry cough are the most common symptoms for patients.
The proportion of people dying from the disease appears to be low, with most only developing mild symptoms and making a full recovery.
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Bernie Sanders cements front-runner status with Nevada caucuses win
Bernie Sanders has cemented his status as the Democratic front-runner to take on Donald Trump in November’s US presidential election.
He is projected to win Nevada’s caucuses, and early results suggest he is on course for a large victory.
There is a long way to go, however, until a nominee is confirmed.
Early results also suggest former vice-president Joe Biden has performed better in Nevada than in the other two states which have voted so far.
He had underwhelming results in Iowa and New Hampshire. Those states kicked off the four-month long primaries process, in which candidates are jostling to convince voters why they are the best candidate to challenge Mr Trump.
What’s the latest from Nevada?
The BBC’s US partner network CBS and other outlets have projected a victory for Mr Sanders.
With 4% of the ballots counted in Nevada, Mr Sanders, the left-wing senator for Vermont, has 54% of the vote, ahead of Mr Biden on 18%. The field is then split between a number of other moderates, including Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg, who trail further behind.
Candidates who have won more than 15% of the vote will be awarded delegates, who will then go to the party’s convention in July to support their Democratic candidate.
Before Saturday, Mr Sanders had 21 delegates, and while he will remain a long way off the 1,990 needed to become the nominee, victory in Nevada will bring him another small step closer towards that total.
The last caucuses in Iowa were plagued by technical glitches that meant results struggled to be recorded using a new app. While that app is not being used in Nevada, there are reports of volunteers struggling to connect to a telephone number used to record results. Organisers say results should start flowing soon.
In a victory speech in Texas on Saturday evening, Mr Sanders praised his “multi-generational, racial coalition” team of supporters, and attacked Mr Trump. “The American people are sick and tired of a president who lies all the time,” he said.
Mr Biden’s campaign was in buoyant mood too, declaring that “the comeback starts here”. In a tweet, Mr Trump praised Mr Sanders’ win, but also called him “Crazy Bernie”.
How has Bernie Sanders done so well?
It looks like it’s all down to a few factors.
Polling agency Edison Research reported that more than half of participating Hispanics had decided to vote for him before the caucuses. In a state of more than three million people where Hispanics make up almost a third of the population, this looks to have made a big difference.
And despite some concern from union members about Mr Sanders’s plan to shake up their delicately negotiated healthcare plans, 36% of union members backed him. One in four Nevada residents is in a union, or has a relative in a union.
Polls conducted by US news networks suggest young voters overwhelmingly favoured Mr Sanders.
‘No doubt Sanders is the front-runner now’
Four years ago, the Nevada caucuses were the moment Hillary Clinton began to turn the tide against Bernie Sanders in his upstart bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. This time around, the results could be further evidence that the Sanders surge is very real and very durable.
Caucus entrance polls show Sanders won a dominating 53% of the Hispanic vote – a demographic he struggled with against Clinton. That bodes well for the senator in the two biggest prizes coming up, Texas and California, with their sizeable Hispanic populations.
Sanders also, not as surprisingly, carried a majority of those aged 18 to 27 and voters who said they wanted someone who agreed with them on the issues.
If Sanders has a winning formula this time around, it could be that he has successfully diversified his coalition, while keeping his loyal support from the young and those who want a president who is with them on issues like major healthcare reform, aggressively combating climate change and addressing income inequality.
The Vermont senator appears so confident in his standing that he was campaigning in California this week and spent the day of the Nevada caucuses in Texas. If there was any doubt whether Sanders was the front-runner before now – and, quite honestly, there shouldn’t have been – there is no question now.
What happens next?
All eyes turn to South Carolina’s primary next Saturday. It will be the biggest of the four states to have voted before March – and the one with the largest percentage of African-American voters.
This should favour Mr Biden, who is popular among African Americans, but Mr Sanders is also expected to do well, and polls suggest that billionaire hedge-fund manager Tom Steyer could claim his first delegates there.
A few days later, on 3 March, is Super Tuesday, when 14 states vote. They include California and Texas, the two states with the most delegates. By the end of Super Tuesday, it may be much clearer who the Democratic candidate will be.
Amani Festival: The DR Congo music festival celebrating life
In a field in central Goma, in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, 36,000 people last weekend got the chance to forget fears about insecurity and enjoy some top African music acts at the Amani Festival.
The annual festival, named after the Swahili word for peace, is a rare time for such large numbers to come together in one place here.
Goma is the biggest city in a region that has seen an upsurge of violence in recent months.
Attacks by the Allied Democratic Forces rebel group and army attempts to flush them out have led to hundreds of civilian deaths.
The three-day event started with a performance of a requiem – or prayer for the dead – based on Mozart’s Requiem but given a Congolese interpretation through local performers.
The living were also remembered.
“We are coming together… to show the world that life still exists, that we are aware that a better future depends on all of us and that we must work together to build it,” organiser Guillaume Bisimwa said.
Queen of Congolese rumba Mbilia Bel, who is in her 60s, wowed the fans with her beautiful and powerful voice. Her set included hits from the 1980s, Mpeve ya Longo and Yamba Nga.
Some festival-goers saw the event as an opportunity to dress up and show off.
Nineteen-year-old visual artist Kasiski Vaillant wore a hat, a pair of glasses and braces that he had designed and made himself.
Others struck a cool pose with sunglasses and face paint.
Local hero Innoss’B, one of the festival headliners, played as the sun went down on Saturday night.
Everyone enjoyed his performance of Yope, which has become a huge hit in the region after he teamed up with Tanzanian star Diamond Platnumz.
Senegalese soul and gospel singer Faada Freddy, who was once part of the rap duo Daara J, was one of the big international artists to perform.
Another Senegalese artist, hip hop performer Didier Awadi, paid tribute to the victims of killings just to the north of Goma and said they should not be forgotten.
As the festival was promoting peace across the region, it also featured traditional artists from Rwanda, which is just across the border.
A troupe came to show the Intore dance, which is performed at family celebrations as well as at big national events.
There was also the chance to taste a local favourite, grilled meat, known here as nyama choma.
Dieume and Pedjos teamed up to provide the gourmet pleasures.
There was a very relaxed and happy atmosphere and it felt like a great way to bring communities together.
The organisers wanted to show that the east of the country was not just a place of conflict.
It did manage to provide an escape from that, but the bad news has not gone away.
Pictures by Ley Uwera
Are APIs Putting Financial Data At Risk?
We live in a world where billions of login credentials have been stolen, enabling the brute-force cyberattacks known as “credential stuffing”, reports CSO Online. And it’s being made easier by APIs:
New data from security and content delivery company Akamai shows that one in every five attempts to gain unauthorized access to user accounts is now done through application programming interfaces (APIs) instead of user-facing login pages. According to a report released today, between December 2017 and November 2019, Akamai observed 85.4 billion credential abuse attacks against companies worldwide that use its services. Of those attacks, around 16.5 billion, or nearly 20%, targeted hostnames that were clearly identified as API endpoints.
However, in the financial industry, the percentage of attacks that targeted APIs rose sharply between May and September 2019, at times reaching 75%.
“API usage and widespread adoption have enabled criminals to automate their attacks,” the company said in its report. “This is why the volume of credential stuffing incidents has continued to grow year over year, and why such attacks remain a steady and constant risk across all market segments.”
APIs also make it easier to extract information automatically, the article notes, while security experts “have long expressed concerns that implementation errors in banking APIs and the lack of a common development standard could increase the risk of data breaches.”
Yet the EU’s “Payment Services Directive” included a push for third-party interoperability among financial institutions, so “most banks started implementing such APIs… Even if no similar regulatory requirements exist in non-EU countries, market forces are pushing financial institutions in the same direction since they need to innovate and keep up with the competition.”
IMF chief, Argentina flag path to new debt deal after G20 meet in Riyadh
RIYADH/BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) – Argentina on Saturday agreed to start consultations with the International Monetary Fund that could lead to a new financing program, days after the global lender said the country’s debt situation had become “unsustainable”.
FILE PHOTO: Argentina’s Economy Minister Martin Guzman gestures during a conference hosted by the Vatican on economic solidarity, at the Vatican, February 5, 2020. REUTERS/Remo Casilli/File Photo
Argentine Economy Minister Martin Guzman told IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva that the heavily indebted Latin American country would initiate formal consultations with the IMF that could lay the groundwork for a new program, the Argentine government and the IMF said in separate statements.
Guzman and Georgieva met on the sidelines of a meeting of finance officials from the world’s 20 largest economies in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
“The minister informed the managing director of the government’s intention to initiate Article IV consultations, which the minister called a valuable step that will deepen mutual understanding between the Argentine government and the IMF on the way toward a new program with the agency,” the government it said.
Article IV talks would allow the IMF to inspect Argentina’s accounts before a new agreement is signed. This would give an assurance to bondholders as they head into restructuring talks that Argentina, notorious for mismanaging its debt, is under IMF supervision. The South American country has defaulted on debt obligations eight times so far and Guzman has said he wanted the upcoming bond revamp to be done in a spirit of cooperation.
Finance officials at the G20 meeting expressed relief that Argentina’s new government had agreed to remain engaged with the IMF, saying it lowered the risk of a messy default at a time when the global economy is facing heightened risks due to the fast-spreading coronavirus.
But Mark Sobel, a former senior U.S. Treasury official and adviser to the London-based OMFIF think-tank, said the decision to consult with the IMF, but not move directly into a new program, reflected the new Peronist government’s historic aversion to the Fund.
“They’re not walking away, but they’re also not going to be in a Fund program for a bit, and who knows when,” he said.
Georgieva said on Saturday she had a “very fruitful exchange of views” with Guzman about putting the country on a path to more sustainable and inclusive growth.
She said the newly elected Argentine government – initially deeply skeptical about continued involvement with the IMF – had agreed to deepen its engagement with the Fund through formal consultations as it worked to “secure a sustainable and orderly resolution of Argentina’s debt situation”.
Argentina is facing tough negotiations with creditors and the IMF to restructure around $100 billion in debt that the country’s government says that it cannot pay unless given time to revive stalled economic growth.
The IMF, which wrapped up a visit to Argentina earlier this week, has said the country’s debt situation had become “unsustainable” and that private creditors would need to make a “meaningful contribution” to resolve the crisis.
Georgieva, a Bulgarian and the first official from an emerging market economy to head the IMF, commended the efforts of the Argentine government to put in place policies aimed at stabilizing the economy, reducing poverty and dealing with its debt.
“In this context, I welcomed the Argentine authorities’ commitment to continue to deepen our engagement including through an Article IV Consultation and steps toward a Fund-supported program in the future. The modalities of these next steps will continue to be discussed,” she said.
The IMF gave Argentina a $57 billion standby financing agreement in 2018, but that program was agreed by the previous government and has been essentially on ice since the election.
The Argentine government said Guzman’s meeting with the IMF chief “deepened mutual understanding and set the stage for future talks”. It was not immediately clear when those talks would begin.
Reporting by Andrea Shalal in Riyadh and Hugh Bronstein in Buenos Aires; Editing by Frances Kerry and Alex Richardson
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