Fit-again Rodwell out to impress

first_imgJack Rodwell hopes he has put his injury-plagued start to life at Manchester City behind him and is ready to play a more major role for Roberto Mancini’s side. Press Association The England midfielder cost City £12million when he signed from Everton last summer but he has made only nine appearances, two of them starts. Hamstring problems have been the main source of Rodwell’s frustration and he was out for more than three months between October and January. Since returning to fitness he has made three substitute appearances, including playing the final half-hour of the FA Cup fifth-round victory over Leeds on Sunday. The 21-year-old said: “I have been working really hard, keeping up my work and feeling as fit as ever.” center_img He added: “There is great competition, and I knew that when I joined, so I have to be patient, keep working, and see what happens. The manager knows how versatile I can be – I can play along the back as well, so I hope that is to my benefit in getting a few more games. “My main aim now is to stay fit. That has been my main problem for the last year or so, an inability to stay fit and shrug off little injuries. That has held me back and I think, if I can stay fit, the games will come.” Rodwell has left no stone unturned in attempting to solve his hamstring issues, including changing his car, and he is putting in an extra hour and a half’s work every day to try to ensure they are a thing of the past. He said: “You have to rule out everything and then nothing can be a problem. I think it has worked, but it is more to do with the gym work I have been doing with City. The physios have highlighted that and done a really good job. I have stuck to a six or seven-week programme where I have not had a day off. “I have hammered the work, done a lot of hamstring work and luckily, touch wood, it has worked. I intend to keep that up for the rest of my career. Hopefully I will stay fit and strong.” Rodwell, twice capped by England, has played most of his football in midfield but believes his future could lie in central defence and has his eye on a similar career progression to City captain Vincent Kompany. “Any player at City is prepared to play anywhere, and I’m no different,” said Rodwell. “Midfield, defence, I have even played out wide for Everton, so I will do a job anywhere and give 100 percent. Vinny is a good player, and I look up to him, watch his game and would definitely take the same path as him. He started out in midfield and is now one of the best centre-halves in the world.” last_img read more

Fans shouldn’t worry about Barkley’s spring

first_img“Armchair Quarterback” runs Tuesdays. If you would like to comment on this story, email Andie at or comment below. Spring football is officially over at USC. The annual spring game held at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum gave the team and fans the final taste of Trojan football until fall.Matt Barkley has constantly been in the spotlight since his decision to forgo the 2011 NFL draft. Like his team, Barkley has received significant hype — even greater than that of previous seasons- — surrounding the possibility of him earning the most esteemed award in college football — the Heisman Trophy.Though Barkley fell short of the Heisman voting last season (he finished sixth), college football addicts can only fathom what possibilities exist. With so much hype surrounding Barkley’s potential performance, Trojan fans are fixed on how well he performed during the annual spring game.On Saturday, Barkley was 23 of 39 for 212 yards with one touchdown and one interception during the 91-play game. Barkley split the bulk of playing time with redshirt freshman backup quarterbacks Cody Kessler and Max Wittek. Barkley’s performance, however, left some questioning whether he will live up to the immense praise he has received and if he will become the school’s third Heisman-winning quarterback.Despite the lackluster performance in the spring game, Barkley is still worthy of Heisman buzz.Since Barkley’s earliest days at USC, he has improved immensely. After enrolling in spring 2009, Barkley easily earned the starting quarterback position after an impressive performance during spring practices. It was no surprise that then-coach Pete Carroll decided to start Barkley as a true freshman.In his first season at USC, Barkley threw 211-352 (59.9 percent) for 2,735 yards, 15 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. Barkley’s performance earned him numerous accolades, such as being a semifinalist for the 2009 Davey O’Brien Award and the 2009 freshman all-American honorable mention — in addition to winning the Emerald Bowl against Boston College.Following Carroll’s departure, Barkley has clearly thrived under the tutelage of USC coach Lane Kiffin. During 2010, Barkley’s sophomore season, he threw 236-377 (62.6 percent) for 2,791 yards, 26 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Barkley was launched into the national spotlight and earned all-conference honors.Barkley’s third season for the Trojans demonstrated why he ranks as one of the best in the country. The 2011 season was the most fruitful. Not only did the Trojans upset ranked and conference rival Oregon in Eugene, USC almost defeated ranked Stanford in triple overtime, ending the last season with an overall record of 10-2.Barkley was 307-446 (69.1 percent) for 3,528 yards throwing 39 touchdowns and seven interceptions. Aside from finishing sixth in Heisman voting, he was a finalist for the Manning Award, Walter Camp Award, Maxwell Award and Davey O’Brien Award. He won the 2011 College Football Performance Awards National Performer of the Year, Pac-12 Player of the Week, along with numerous others.Barkley’s improvement during his career at USC points to the fact that he is worthy of consideration in pre-season Heisman discussion. Trojan fans should not fret after seeing Barkley’s performance Saturday because USC does not kick off the 2012 season until Sept. 1.Keep in mind, most of the spring football practice reps at quarterback have been divvied up between Wittek and Kessler, who are battling for the back-up position. Though Barkley had offensive weapon sophomore receiver Marqise Lee, he is still missing one of his other favorite targets — sophomore receiver Robert Woods.And don’t forget that the Heisman is awarded to the player that has not only succeeded individually, but has also led his team significantly.With that in mind, Barkley should have just as good a chance as anyone for the Heisman. Now all he has to do is deliver.last_img read more


first_imgAs National Heritage Week starts on Saturday, August 18 and runs until Sunday, August 26, people in Donegal are being urged to take part in this year’s extensive programme of events. County Donegal is the county with the most events taking place in the country outside Dublin, Cork and Galway.“Heritage Week is an opportunity to raise awareness of the heritage of County Donegal” explains Joseph Gallagher, County Donegal Heritage Officer. “Indeed, County Donegal is one of the places to be during Heritage Week with over 90 events already planned in the county during that week, most of which are free. Tremendous credit must go the many heritage organisations, community groups and individuals who organise events often on a voluntary basis. Anchored by events organised by Glenveagh National Park and Cultural Services, Donegal County Council, it means that there’s lots of choice for residents and visitors alike.”National Heritage Week is coordinated by The Heritage Council & Local Authority Heritage Officers with support from Fáilte Ireland. Speaking about Heritage Week.Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Jimmy Deenihan T.D. said “It is fantastic to see the popularity of National Heritage Week grow each year as more and more people across Ireland engage with it, organising and attending events in their community. The range of events taking place during National Heritage Week demonstrates the diversity and importance of Ireland’s heritage.“Now more than ever, the contribution that heritage makes to local and national economic development, as well as to Ireland’s tourism offering, is being recognised. I would strongly encourage people in all parts of Ireland to get involved and to take part in National Heritage Week activities in their locality”. Michael Starrett, Chief Executive of The Heritage Council said “Each year we are seeing a huge increase in the number of individuals and groups getting involved in the week. Seven years ago just 500 events took place for National Heritage Week, this year the week has hit a record high, with over 1,400 events already registered. Based on last year’s events by the time Heritage Week comes round that figure will have risen to well over 1,500 events. We expect over 600,000 people to attend events across the country, meaning a huge knock-on economic effect for local communities.” There are over 90 ‘Heritage Week’ events taking place in County Donegal and include family open days, guided walks, built heritage open houses, heritage site visits, fieldtrips, exhibitions, illustrated presentations, photographic competition, children’s activities, genealogical research, storytelling sessions, traditional music, craft fairs and traditional skills demonstrations.The Cultural Services Division of Donegal County Council (which includes Archives, Arts, Heritage, Library, Museum, Regional Cultural Centre and Public Art services) has organised, or is hosting, 20 free ‘Heritage Week’ events.Glenveagh National Park has a full programme of events including free weekend days, guided nature walks and garden tours, birds of prey displays, natural heritage educational activities (including National Park Adventure Days), medieval weaponry display, storytelling, craft stalls, traditional music, song and dance, and children’s entertainment.Week-long events include a photographic exhibition on leisure and sport in the Twin Towns area in the Ballybofey Branch Library; heritage wall display, art and craftwork at the Burtonport Welcome Centre; photographic account of Féile Grianan Áiligh at Carndonagh Community Library; the ‘Sites of Reverie’ summer exhibition at Cavanacor House in Ballindrait; the ‘Donegal Diaspora: Tracing Your Family History’ exhibition in the Central Library in Letterkenny; Fahan Heritage Walks starting from St. Mura’s Graveyard in Fahan; an exhibition on the genealogy of the Parish of Kilcar in Áislann Chill Chartha, Kilcar; an exhibition on ‘Poster Art of the Olympics’ and an exhibition on parades, marches and processions entitled ‘Marching Colours’ in the County Museum, Letterkenny; an exhibition celebrating the unique history of Gweedore in Áislann Ghaoth Dobhair in Derrybeg; a photographic exhibition on Milford’s built and natural heritage in Milford Community Library; a collection of old photographs from the 1950s taken around the parish of Moville in Moville Branch Library; and ‘The 5th Birthday Show’ at the Regional Cultural Centre in Letterkenny.A day-by-day outline of the all ‘Heritage Week’ events in available on the County Donegal Heritage Office website at: or on the Heritage Week website at: Selected daily highlights include:Saturday, August 18: Join Joseph Brennan for a Red Grouse Walk at Cró na mBraonáin, Shallogans, Fintown (9:30 a.m.). There’s an open day at the Killybegs International Carpet-Making & Fishing Centre (11 a.m. – 3 p.m.) and an exhibition and presentation on ‘Rutland Shipwrecks & Maritime Archaeology’ in Burtonport organised by the Burtonport Heritage Group in association with the Underwater Archaeology Unit of the Department of Arts, Heritage & the Gaeltacht (12 noon). BirdWatch Ireland hosts a Tory Island Heritage Walk (1 p.m.). Traditional cottages that have been conserved and restored are open to the public in the Dungloe area between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Archaeologist Paula Harvey will lead a guided tour of megalithic tombs in Kilclooney (2:30 p.m.).Sunday, August 19:There’s an open day at Dunfanaghy Workhouse (10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.) and a Family Fun Day at Donegal Castle (12 noon to 5 p.m.). A Wonderful Fair Day is planned at Glebe House, Church Hill (12 noon to 5 p.m.). There’s a guided walk along the Burtonport Railway (2 p.m.) while the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group will be hosting land-based whale watches at St. John’s Point and at Malin Head (2 p.m.). An Taisce have organised a boat tour of Lough Swilly departing from Rathmullan Pier (3 p.m.). There are also guided fieldtrips in Ballyshannon, Kilcar, Fahan and Glencolmcille.Weekdays: A full breakdown of daily events is available on the County Donegal Heritage Office website at: Craft workshops are being held at The Erratic Makers in Dungloe and in Dunfanaghy Workhouse on various days throughout the week. On Monday evening, local historian Helen Meehan will give a presentation on ‘The Background to the Ulster Covenant’ in the Central Library, Letterkenny (6 p.m.). The newly-formed Ballybofey & Stranorlar District History Society will lead a history trail of the Twin Towns on Monday evening also (7 p.m.). There’s a knitting gathering at Sean Scoil Tráighéanach, Cloghbolie on Tuesday (8 p.m.). The biodiversity to be found along the Burtonport Railway line will be explored in a guided walk with ecologist John Wann on Wednesday (3 p.m.). The built and cultural heritage takes centre stage on Wednesday evening with a guided tour of Raphoe and Beltany Stone Circle by the Raphoe Heritage Project (6:30 p.m.) and a fieldtrip to the Stone Age Tombs of Glencolmcille with archaeologist Paddy O’Donovan (7 p.m.). There’s a talk on the Donegal Currach in Gweedore Community Library (7 p.m.) on Wednesday and an evening of storytelling and song at Fort Dunree (8 p.m.). Birds of prey will be on display in Ionad Teampaill Chróine in Dungloe on Thursday (11 a.m.). The conservation of the built heritage of Brownhall, Ballintra will be outlined in an on-site presentation and tour also on Thursday (2:30 p.m.). There’s a lecture on the life and work of Harry Percival Swan in Buncrana Community Library (4 p.m.) and a natural heritage tour of Ros Bán Gardens and the Carnone Woodlands near Raphoe (5:45 p.m.) on Thursday too. Marc Geagan will give a presentation entitled ‘The Independent Republic of Bundoran’ in Bundoran Community Library on Thursday (8 p.m.). On Friday, there’s an opportunity to visit the restoration of stone-slated cottages at Roshin, Dunfanaghy with Caroline Dickson Architects (10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.). The Burtonport Heritage Group have organised a walk through the built heritage and history of Burtonport on Friday (3 p.m.). On Friday evening, there’s a celebration of the music, storytelling and folklore of the Bluestacks/Na Cruacha Gorma in St. Connell’s Museum in Glenties (8:30 p.m.).Saturday, August 25:Local historian Helen Meehan will lead a guided tour of local heritage sites in the Inver area organised by the Inver Community Centre History Group (11 a.m.). the Rosses Anglers’ Association will host a ‘Fun with Fly Fishing’ event (12 noon – 4 p.m.). A fieldtrip of local heritage sites with Cary Meehan leaves from Dunfanaghy Workhouse at 2 p.m. while the McGlinchey Association hosts a guided walk in Clonmany at 2:30 p.m.Sunday, August 26:On the closing day of ‘Heritage Week’, Donegal Castle has a medieval weaponry display (12 noon to 5 p.m.). At Oakfield Park in Raphoe, it’s ‘Steam Sunday’ with working model exhibits by the Donegal Railway Heritage Centre (12 noon – 6 p.m.). Newmills Corn & Flax Mills near Letterkenny has a demonstration of stone-ground corn milling (1 p.m. – 5 p.m.). There are presentations on World War II plane crashes in the Inishowen Maritime Museum in Greencastle at 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. There are fieldtrips in Carrowmenagh (2 p.m.) organised by the Tremone Historical Society and at Bulaba Mountain (2:30 p.m.) organised by the McGlinchey Association in Inishowen. There is the annual mass in the thirteenth-century Tullaghbegley historic graveyard near Falcarragh at 3 p.m. while the Donegal Historical Society host one of its annual field days in Bundoran also at 3 p.m.The County Donegal Heritage Office, Cultural Services, Donegal County Council has produced the highly-popular, pocket-size ‘Heritage Week Event Guide for County Donegal’ again this year and it is available free-of-charge from libraries, public service centres, museums, heritage centres and tourist offices and on-line at the County Donegal Heritage Office website at: Updates are available on the National Heritage Week website at: www.heritageweek.iePhoto 1 caption:Cover of the free County Donegal ‘Heritage Week’ Event Guide compiled by the County Donegal Heritage Office and available from libraries, museums, heritage centres and tourist offices in the county.ENDSFor further information, please contact:Joseph GallagherHeritage Officer,County Donegal Heritage Office,Donegal County Council,Station Island,Lifford.Telephone: (074) 917 2576E-mail: heritage@donegalcoco.ieYOUR A TO Z OF EVENTS IN DONEGAL DURING HERITAGE WEEK was last modified: August 18th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:donegalHeritage Weeklast_img read more