Tag Archives: memory

Sam Allardyce reveals how he once missed out on Robert Lewandowski

Big Sam: How I missed out on Champions League hotshot Lewandowski

By
John Drayton

PUBLISHED:

08:25 GMT, 26 April 2013

|

UPDATED:

09:01 GMT, 26 April 2013

DM.has('shareLink', 'shareLinks',
'id': '2315118',
'title': 'Big Sam: How I missed out on Champions League hero Lewandowski',
'url': 'http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2315118/Sam-Allardyce-reveals-missed-Robert-Lewandowski.html',
'eTwitterStatus': 'Sam%20Allardyce%20reveals%20how%20he%20once%20missed%20out%20on%20Robert%20Lewandowski%20http://bit.ly/15LBBDb%20via%[email protected]'
);

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce has revealed how he missed out on signing Robert Lewandowski – during his time in charge at Blackburn.

The Borussia Dortmund striker was set to hold talks with Rovers in 2010 as he looked for a move from Polish club Lech Poznan.

But the cash-strapped Blackburn board struggled to find the money and the Iceland volcanic ash cloud put the final nail in the coffin when Lewandowski's flight to England was cancelled.

Dortmund stepped in to secure a deal for a fee reported to be around 4.5million euros and the rest is now history.

On target: Lewandowski was set to hold talks with Sam Allardyce at Blackburn Rovers in 2010

On target: Lewandowski was set to hold talks with Sam Allardyce at Blackburn Rovers in 2010

Allardyce told Sky Sports: 'It's true. He was put forward to sign very strongly by our recruitment staff and unfortunately it was one that got knocked back.

'My distant memory isn't that great but I think (former Rovers chairman) John (Williams) and the board said we are not going to commit that amount of money.

'I think they wanted three or four million euros but we were particularly strapped financially at the time at Blackburn. I watched him play. But I didn't get the chance to meet him.

'I think his agent said he couldn't come over because of the ash cloud, yes. He's probably worth 40 million euros now.'

Missed out: Allardyce was keen to sign Lewandowski but the Rovers board could not find the cash

Missed out: Allardyce was keen to sign Lewandowski but the Rovers board could not find the cash

Allardyce is now left to rue the missed opportunity to sign the Pole who scored four goals against Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg on Wednesday night.

He said: 'I think about it every time I see him play.

'He would have had a period of getting used to the level and the physical presence, but with a talent like that it wouldn't have been too long before he started to shine and score goals.

'The level he is playing at now is unbelievable, not just his scoring ability but his ability to retain possession.

'There were a lot of people looking at him at that time as well but we had the edge over everyone else because of the attraction of the Premier League.

'He could have used us as a stepping stone but it didn't happen.'

The one that got away: Lewandowski moved from Lech Poznan to Dortmund for a reported 4.5million euros

The one that got away: Lewandowski moved from Lech Poznan to Dortmund for a reported 4.5million euros

Rory Hamilton-Brown leaves Surrey to Sussex

Hamilton-Brown hopes to start again at Sussex after death of Surrey team-mate Maynard

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

23:54 GMT, 3 April 2013

|

UPDATED:

23:56 GMT, 3 April 2013

Rory Hamilton-Brown wants to honour the memory of his tragic friend Tom Maynard after leaving Surrey to return to Sussex.

The former England Under 19 captain spoke on Wednesday of his need to leave the Oval following the loss of his flatmate and best pal, who died under a train after fleeing police in London last June.

Hamilton-Brown, 25, believes he can rediscover his drive and love for the game back at Hove, where he spent two years between 2007 and 2009.

Outbound: Rory Hamilton-Brown leaves Surrey for Sussex

Outbound: Rory Hamilton-Brown leaves Surrey for Sussex

'I realised I needed to be in a place where I felt close to people again, where there was that love and care,' he said.

'I had two fantastic years at Sussex and in a funny way, it always felt like home.

'A little part of me wants to think that I’m carrying him with me and that’s going to give you a deeper, harder drive than I’ve had before.'

Tragic: Tom Maynard died at Wimbledon Park Tube station

Tragic: Tom Maynard died at Wimbledon Park Tube station

Michael Owen hits back at Twitter trolls with photo of trophy cabinet

Take a look at my medals! Owen hits back at Twitter trolls with picture of trophy cabinet

By
Lee Bryan

PUBLISHED:

23:42 GMT, 1 January 2013

|

UPDATED:

01:22 GMT, 2 January 2013

Stoke striker Michael Owen hit back at Twitter trolls who were abusing him on the social network site by posting a picture of his personal trophy cabinet.

The abuse started after Owen wrote: ‘Tough game today and not many teams get anything away at Man City. Shame our 10 game unbeaten run in the Premier League is over. #Stoke’

And that prompted many of his followers to reply to the striker – who has been out injured – to ask what he had done to contribute to Stoke’s run and why he was not playing.

Hitting back: Stoke's Michael Owen refused to take abuse lying down

Hitting back: Stoke's Michael Owen refused to take abuse lying down

Owen, who has made just four appearances for the Potters this season, then Tweeted: ‘New Year but things never change. About 100 replies to my last tweet so far and every single one is abusive. What a lovely world we live in.

‘Tweet something like that and then you see the nicer side of Twitter. The minority always ruin it for genuinely decent people.’

Here's what I've won: Owen tweeted a picture of his trophy cabinet

Here's what I've won: Owen tweeted a picture of his trophy cabinet

He then followed up with a picture of his trophy cabinet that includes European Player of the Year trophy, a Premier League medal, a FA Cup winners medal as well as three League Cup winners medals along with the Tweet: ‘Oh, and just to remind the trolls with a short memory out there.’

That then prompted his former team-mate Dietmar 'Did' Hamann to reply: ‘Hahaha nice one mukka.’

Jonathan Trott helps England build lead over India as they close in on series win

Determined Trott stays calm under pressure as England move closer to memorable series win

|

UPDATED:

14:03 GMT, 16 December 2012

Jonathan Trott stood defiantly up against the Indian attack, a pitch unfit for purpose and a barrage of verbal abuse to take England to within one good session of one of their best and most historic triumphs in modern memory.

What had been a cagey, turgid and mostly downright dull final Test burst into life with the series on a knife-edge in the final session of the fourth day when Trott put behind him a year full of frustrations to deliver just when it mattered most.

When Kevin Pietersen inexplicably shouldered arms to a straight ball from Ravindra Jadeja – just as Trott had done in the first innings – England, who had battled heroically for the best part of four days, looked to be letting their first series win in India for almost 28 years slip out of their grasp.

Building his runs: Jonathan Trott scored a half century as England look to build a lead

Building his runs: Jonathan Trott scored a half century as England look to build a lead

They were just 98 ahead with three wickets down and the man who could have attacked them to safety gone yet again to left-arm spin. But Ian Bell joined Trott and what followed was the most fluent, potentially decisive, batting of a Test England need only draw today to take the series.

Not to mention the most controversial. For when Trott walked a few paces outside his crease and smacked a ball that had dribbled out of Jadeja’s hand and bounced several times before trickling to a halt on the leg-side of the pitch for four he ignited another argument between these teams over the spirit of cricket.

Trott was perfectly within his rights to do what he did but, even though both Jadeja and MS Dhoni reacted with wry smiles, Ravichandran Ashwin later said that this was the spark for the tense and unpleasant scenes that were to follow.

Remember, it was Dhoni who called Bell back at Trent Bridge last year when he had been run out walking out of his crease at tea. And remember it was Trott who, in Ahmedabad, pleaded ignorance when he had clearly grassed a catch. India feel that their gesture in Trent Bridge has hardly been reciprocated since.

Trott will not care. His totally legal shot – which went down as four off a no-ball – showed the competitive desire of the man and he carried on displaying it when India were convinced, wrongly, they had him caught behind on 43.

This has again been a chastening match for the umpires and those of us who against all hope tried to cling on to a game not dominated by technology. Sorry, this series has proved the Decision Review System doubters like myself totally wrong. It has been punctuated by one awful umpiring error after another.

The latest howlers came from the man this year voted the best official on the ICC elite panel, Kumar Dharmasena. Firstly he gave out Alastair Cook, wrongly, for the second time in the Test and then said no when Trott should have been given lbw on just seven to Jadeja. How important that reprieve now looks.

Frustration: Ishant Sharma thought he had taken Jonathan Trott's wicket

Frustration: Ishant Sharma thought he had taken Jonathan Trott's wicket

Add Sunday’s other wrong decision of Rod Tucker who gave Nick Compton lbw to one he inside edged onto pad – the ball then ballooned to gully so Compton should have been given out anyway, only in a different way – and this series has seen a catalogue of errors from these umpires and the ones who officiated in the first two Tests, Aleem Dar and Tony Hill.

But Dharmasena’s decision to reprieve Trott when he attempted to cut Ishant Sharma was not among them. This was the right call but that did not stop the Indian players losing their cool completely, with their agitator in chief Virat Kohli involving himself in an incident that had nothing to do with him.

There at the end: Ian Bell supported Trott at the end

There at the end: Ian Bell supported Trott at the end

They were picking on the wrong man in Trott. He is one who thrives on such things rather than being cowed by them. He appeared to blow a little kiss at Sharma – that didn’t exactly calm India down – and went on his merry way to an unbeaten 66 by the close with England on 161 for three, a priceless lead of 165.

There was one other flashpoint when Ashwin threatened to run Trott out backing up – he later said in essence that he would not have stooped to Trott’s level – but the combative Trott and his team lived to fight one last day in this absorbing and unpredictable series.

As long as England do not blow it with a cluster of quick wickets today they will surely achieve the draw they need. It would be a series triumph richly deserved. Even yesterday India, until they were stirred into a late reaction, were strangely passive, poor in the field and lacking any sort of dynamism.

Their fortunes were summed up by a quite bizarre first hour yesterday when they batted on but showed no ambition to try to win the match, scoring just 29 runs in 13 soporific overs before declaring with one wicket left four runs behind England’s 330. All they achieved was take time out of the match and made Cook’s task a little easier. It was not very Duncan Fletcher-like cricket at all.

A Test that has never progressed beyond first gear, at least until Trott and Bell took the run-rate up close to a giddy three an over, has done little to further the cause of the ultimate game in its most passionate country. Shame on the groundsman who produced this lifeless excuse of a pitch, whether by accident or design.

But the sheer importance of this Test and what is at stake has made it compelling viewing for the purists. And England just need one last, final push now for the most extraordinary of series wins.

We are unable to carry live pictures from the fourth Test in Nagpur due to a dispute between the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and international news organisations.

The BCCI has refused access to Test venues to established picture agencies Getty Images and Action Images and other Indian photographic agencies.

MailOnline consider this action to be a strike against press freedom and supports the action to boycott BCCI imagery.

Kansas City Chief Jovan Belcher may have struggled with head injuries, alcohol, and painkillers before killing his girlfriend

Kansas City Chief Belcher may have struggled with head injuries, alcohol, and painkillers before killing his girlfriend, friends say Tipster claims Belcher drank heavily every day and was experiencing short-term memory lossHead injuries and painkillers may have contributed to Belcher's mental stateKansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher, 25, shot and killed his girlfriend Kasandra Perkins, 22, at their home Saturday morningFirst he thanked his coach and general manager for everything they had done for him and then he shot himself in the head in front of them

|

UPDATED:

10:21 GMT, 3 December 2012

Friends of Kansas City Chief Jovan Belcher say his mental state may have been deteriorated due to a history of head injuries, pain killers, and alcohol abuse.

Belcher shot and killed his girlfriend in front of his mother at their Kansas City home on Saturday, then drove to the team's practice facility, where he committed suicide in the parking lot as head coach Romeo Crennel and General Manager Scott Pioli watched.

The tragedy dampened the atmosphere at the Arrowhead Stadium and tempered the joy of the victory, which snapped an eight-game losing streak and improved Kansas City's record to 2-10.

Scroll down for video

Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher, 25, shot and killed his girlfriend and then himself on Saturday morning

Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher, 25, shot and killed his girlfriend and then himself on Saturday morning

Happy family: Jovan Belcher killed his girlfriend Kasandra Perkins before shooting himself at the Kansas City Chiefs' stadium on Saturday morning

Happy family: Jovan Belcher killed his girlfriend Kasandra Perkins before shooting himself at the Kansas City Chiefs' stadium on Saturday morning

Row: The couple apparently argued on Friday night after Perkins attended a concert by Trey Songz

Row: The couple apparently argued on Friday night after Perkins attended a concert by Trey Songz

And now person claiming to be close to Belcher
has revealed in a series of e-mails that these issues as well as
long-term domestic problems between himself and his girlfriend may have
led Belcher to the murder-suicide he committed Saturday morning.

In a series of e-mails to Deadspin, the friend describes

'They have been arguing for quite sometime and had separated 2 weeks ago,' the anonymous friend wrote. 'He had brought her and the baby back home however, they were both
arguing on a regular basis. Both of them are/were very young and
immature and that combined with other factors led to this tragedy.'

The friend adds that many of their recent arguments focused on Perkins failing college classes Belcher paid for and quitting
her retail job, as well as telling Belcher that she was leaving him and would find a lawyer to 'get as much money as possible' from the football player.

And Belcher may have reacted to all this differently if he wasn't messed up from booze, meds, and taking shots to the head on the field.

Belcher

Family man: Belcher with his girlfriend at the birth of his son just months before he left the child orphaned

'When it comes to prescription medication it is unclear
from my perspective whether it was diagnosed and authorized by the team
or not,' the friend wrote. 'However I know he was under the influence of narcotics for pain
and I'm sure the toxicology report will reflect this. However, Jovan
drank ALOT. On a nightly basis. This is not a mystery as he did so in
public and private.

'When it comes to his concussions; if you
review the footage of the Cincinnati game he took a few hits to the head
directly […] he was dazed and was suffering from short term memory
loss. He could not remember the events that had taken place prior to
that game or what he had said to get Kasi to return home.'

MailOnline recently revealed that
the NFL star was a member of a group which campaigns against violence
towards women.

Belcher was part of Male Athletes
Against Violence and had pledged to develop deep-held beliefs against
attacking females.

Among
the promises he would have made is one to ‘look honestly at my actions
in regard to violence and make changes if necessary’.

Belcher would also have taken part in
the White Ribbon campaign – those taking part vow to ‘never to commit,
condone nor remain silent about violence against women’.

Respect: Kansas City Chiefs and Carolina Panthers players form a prayer circle after the game

Respect: Kansas City Chiefs and Carolina Panthers players form a prayer circle after the game

Chiefs

Mourning: Belcher's teammates observe a moment of silence before the start of their NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers in Kansas City

Romeo

Hurt: Kansas City Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel wipes tears away on the sidelines of Sunday's game

The 25-year-old linebacker was a
member of MAAV whilst studying at the University of Maine where he
played football for three years until he signed with the Kansas City
Chiefs in 2009.

On Saturday his past as an
anti-violence campaigner apparently meant little when he shot Perkins dead in a row when she came home from
an R&B concert the night before.

His mother discovered the body as she was living in the house too and called 911.

Belcher then drove to his team’s stadium and shot himself dead in front of his coach and general manager.

He and Perkins lived together and three months ago had a baby girl but are said to have rowed frequently.

The horrific murder suicide came one
day before a Kansas home game against the Carolina Panthers which went ahead as scheduled, which the Chiefs won 27-21.

As friends and family try to work out
what drove Belcher over the edge, it now seems that in recent years he
was a champion of women’s rights.

Chiefs

City rocked: A fan expresses his sorrow following at Sunday's game

Chiefs

Respects: Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Brady Quinn gestures to heaven after a touchdown pass during the first half the teams game against the Carolina Panthers

Chiefs

Memorial: Kansas City Chiefs fans build a makeshift memorial for Belcher outside Arrowhead Stadium

Whilst at UMaine he was part of MAAV
which describes itself as an ‘effort to involve men so that we can begin
to understand that violence is very much a ‘man’s issue.’'

It supports the White Ribbon campaign
in which male athletes wear a white ribbon as a public display of their
stand against violent men.

Among the promotional posters are
some with football players which have slogans like: ‘Join the huddle.
Work together to end violence’ and ‘Stand tough against violence’.

Belcher himself has even spoken about his respect for women which he developed because his father was never around.

In a 2008 interview he said: ‘My mother is a hardworking woman. To see her overcome some things and succeed, it makes me look at things and say, ‘this isn’t even hard.’

‘I didn’t really have a father figure, so they provided nice guidance for me.’

Belcher

Gone: Belcher's baby will never know its mother

Crime scene: Investigators stand outside an Independence, Mo., house where police say Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher fatally shot his girlfriend on Saturday morning

Crime scene: Investigators stand outside an Independence, Mo., house where police say Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher fatally shot his girlfriend on Saturday morning

On Facebook, a profile for Perkins includes pictures of her with Belcher, whom she refers to as her boyfriend

On Facebook, a profile for Kasandra Perkins includes pictures of her and Belcher with their three month old baby

Judging from pictures posted on
Kasandra's Facebook page, Belcher and his girlfriend had appeared to be
happy and in love following the birth of their first child.

Belcher had argued with his girlfriend after she came home
late from an R&B concert the night before he shot her dead then
drove to his team's stadium and committed suicide in front of his coach
and general manager, it has emerged.

The 25-year-old Kansas City Chiefs
linebacker fatally shot 22-year-old Kasandra Perkins early on Saturday
morning, then killed himself in the presence of Chiefs staff after first
thanking them for everything they had done for him, police said.

The
couple lived together and three months ago had a baby together on
September
11 – but a friend said they quarrelled frequently, and added that they
fought when Perkins arrived home at 1am after attending a performance by
Trey Songz.

Authorities did not confirm a
possible motive for the murder-suicide, which stunned the team and came
one day before a home game against the Carolina Panthers. The NFL said
the game would go on as scheduled.

Judging from pictures posted on
Kasandra's Facebook page, the young couple had appeared to be happy and
in love following the birth of their first child.

'Jovan
and Kasandra always seemed to be in love. In fact, when Kasandra got
pregnant, she and Jovan were ecstatic. Ever since the baby was born in
September, the two couldn’t have seemed happier together,' a member of the Perkin's family told TMZ.

However, a friend told the Kansas City Star
she had frequently seen them argue over the course of their
relationship – though she had no reason to believe their fights had ever
become violent.

Grieving: Belcher's friends and relatives gathered outside his family home in West Babylon, New York

Grieving: Belcher's friends and relatives gathered outside his family home in West Babylon, New York

Comfort: Two people embrace outside Belcher's home, hung with jerseys from the teams he played for

Comfort: Two people embrace outside Belcher's home, hung with jerseys from the teams he played for

Toast: Mourners drink to Belcher's memory after receiving news of his death on Saturday

Toast: Mourners drink to Belcher's memory after receiving news of his death on Saturday

On Friday
night, she added, Belcher had confronted Perkins when she came home
after watching

Belcher

Happier days: Belcher and his girlfriend goof off in a photo booth

R&B star Trey Songz perform in Kansas City.

Belcher’s
agent Joe Linta told ESPN’s Adam Schefter: 'I'm in shock. So out of
character. He was the last person in the world you would expect to do
this.'

'Jovan was a happy, proud father, with pictures of his baby on his Facebook page,' Linta told SI.com's
Peter King in a phone call on Saturday afternoon. 'This is shocking.
Something went crazy wrong, and we'll probably never know what it is.'

'Never until four hours ago did I
think Jovan was anything but a model citizen,' Linta told King.

'He came to my youth clinics in the offseason and
worked with kids. He was a gracious, unselfish, hard-working, dedicated
kid — very, very caring of some of the underprivileged kids who came to
the clinics. I saw him in a real positive way.

'I never take on anyone as a client I wouldn't be proud to take
home and spend time with my wife and kids. Jovan was one of those type
of people.

'There's no word for this other than shocking. That's all I can think of.'

Belcher was a 25-year-old native of
West Babylon, New York, on Long Island, played college ball at Maine. He
had played all four of his NFL seasons for the Chiefs and played in
every game each year, including the 11 so far this season. His 2012
salary was $1,927,000, four times what he had earned for the previous
year.

Before turning the gun on himself, Belcher thanked Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli and Romeo Crennel for all they had done for him, police spokesman Darin Snapp said.

Belcher's mother had recently moved in with the couple, possibly to help with the baby, at their residence in Independence, Missouri about five miles away from the Arrowhead complex.

She called police just before 8 a.m. to
report Perkins had been shot multiple times. Perkins was transported to
The University of Kansas hospital, where she died a short time later.

'When we arrived, a lady informed us
that her daughter had been shot multiple times by her boyfriend, by the
daughter's boyfriend,' Snapp said. 'She identified him as a Chiefs
player.'

Snapp told KCTV5 that a call was then received from the Chiefs' practice facility.

Jovan Belcher #59 stretches before a game against the Oakland Raiders at Arrowhead Stadium in 2009
Jovan Belcher #59 stretches before a game against the Oakland Raiders at Arrowhead Stadium in 2009

'The description matched the suspect
description from that other address. We kind of knew what we were
dealing with,' he said. The player was 'holding a gun to his head' as he
stood in front of the front doors of the practice facility.

'And there were Pioli and Crennel and
another coach or employee was standing outside and appeared to be
talking to him. It appeared they were talking to the suspect,' Snapp
said.

'The suspect began to walk in the
opposite direction of the coaches and the officers and that's when they
heard the gunshot. It appears he took his own life.'

The coaches told police they never felt in any danger, Snapp said.

'They said the player was actually
thanking them for everything they'd done for him,' he said. 'They were
just talking to him and he was thanking them and everything.

Kasandra Perkins' Facebook profile includes pictures of her with Belcher and their young baby

Kasandra Perkins' Facebook profile includes pictures of her with Belcher and their young baby

Jovan Belcher pictured changing his young child's diaper

Jovan Belcher pictured changing his young child's diaper

Originally from Texas, Kasandra Perkins had moved to Missouri to be with Belcher

Originally from Texas, Kasandra Perkins had moved to Missouri to be with Belcher

'They said he was not a danger to anyone else,” Snapp said. 'Belcher
thanked them for being a Chief, and that's when he walked away.'

Outside Belcher's family home in West Babylon, Long Island, family and friends gathered on Saturday afternoon to toast their deceased friends life.

They have created a shrine to the football player on Matthews Avenue complete with Chiefs jerseys and flags from the University of Maine.

Ruben Marshall, a family friend who said he was Belcher's Police Athletic League coach growing up, told Newsday Belcher was a 'loving father and family man.'

'I couldn't believe it,' he said upon hearing the news Saturday morning. 'I didn't want to believe it,' Marshall, 42, said as he stood outside the home.

'He was a good person,” Marshall said. 'Somebody you'd want to be around as a role model.'

Upon arriving at the Arrowhead Stadium complex, police witnessed a black male in a car with a handgun to his head talking to two Chiefs officials

Upon arriving at the Arrowhead Stadium complex, police witnessed a black male in a car with a handgun to his head talking to two Chiefs officials

Kansas City Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel: This season has been a massive disappointment for the Chiefs

Before killing himself, Belcher thanked Kansas City Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel for everything he had done for him

'The entire Chiefs family is deeply
saddened by today's events, and our collective hearts are heavy with
sympathy, thoughts and prayers for the families and friends affected by
this unthinkable tragedy,' Chiefs chairman Clark Hunt said in a
statement.

'We sincerely
appreciate the expressions of sympathy and support we have received from
so many in the Kansas City and NFL communities, and ask for continued
prayers for the loved ones of those impacted,' Hunt said. 'We will
continue to fully cooperate with the authorities and work to ensure that
the appropriate counseling resources are available to all members of
the organization.'

The NFL
released a statement that also expressed sympathy and said, 'we have
connected the Chiefs with our national team of professional counselors
to support both the team and the families of those affected. We will
continue to provide assistance in any way that we can.'

Kansas City Mayor Sly James went to Arrowhead and met with Pioli afterward, according to the Kansas City Star.

Shooting: Arrowhead Stadium is home of the Kansas City Chiefs, Kansas City

Shooting: Arrowhead Stadium is home of the Kansas City Chiefs, Kansas City

Belcher has been the Chiefs starting inside linebacker for the last two seasons after going undrafted in 2009

Belcher had been the Chiefs starting inside linebacker for the last two seasons after going undrafted in 2009

'Think about your worst nightmare and multiply it by five,' James was quoted as saying.

'This is part of the tragedy of urban living in this country,' Mayor James told reporters outside the practice facility.

'Handguns
all over the place, people blowing themselves away, and others. At some
point we have to get a handle on this kind of stuff. We are not doing a
good job of it.'

Belcher is the second Kansas City Chiefs employee to be involved in a murder-suicide in the last four months. On Labor Day Luis Angel Roberson Rodriquez, who worked in the Chiefs stadium operations department, killed himself after shooting his girlfriend Jamie Kristine Kimble near the Tampa International Airport.

The Kansas City Chiefs have confirmed that a shooting took at Arrowhead stadium this morning

The Kansas City Chiefs home game against the Carolina Panthers is scheduled to go ahead on Sunday

The body of Belcher's girlfriend was taken to The University of Kansas Hospital

The body of Belcher's girlfriend was taken to The University of Kansas Hospital

The season has been a massive
disappointment for the Chiefs, who were expected to contend for the AFC
West title.

But they're just 1-10
and mired in an eight-game losing streak that has been marked by
devastating injuries and fan upheaval, with constant calls the past few
weeks for general manager Scott Pioli and coach Romeo Crennel to be
fired.

The
Chiefs have been ravaged by injuries, led the league in turnovers,
can't settle on a quarterback and are dealing with a full-fledged fan
rebellion. The Twitter account for a fan group known as “Save Our
Chiefs” recently surpassed 80,000 followers, about 17,000 more than the
announced crowd at a recent game.

Things have been so bad this season that Crennel fired himself as defensive coordinator.

THE NFL'S DEADLY HISTORY OF CONCUSSIONS AND SUICIDES

The motive for Belcher's murder-suicide is unknown at this point, but authorities will undoubtedly consider the impact of head injuries he may have sustained playing in the NFL.

In the past two years, the suicides of six NFL players have been linked to chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), which is caused by repeated blows to the head.

Sufferers can show symptoms such as memory loss, aggression, confusion and depression which may appear within months or many decades later. Later in life it can eventually cause dementia.

Experts believe CTE may be caused by the loss of neurons and scarring of brain tissue among other injuries caused by repeated concussion.

It changes brain cells' cytoskeletons, which is thought to be due to damage to cerebral blood vessels. The condition is virtually indistinguishable from Alzheimer’s.

Players who have committed suicide in recent years, with possible links to the condition, include:

Dave Duerson: This two-time Super Bowl winner shot himself in February 2011 after texting family members asking for his brain to be examined for CTE.

Wade Belak: The former Nashville Predator was found dead in September 2011, having hanged himself in a Toronto hotel room.

Junior Seau: In May 2012 the former San Diego Charger died of a gunshot wound to the chest. He was found by his girlfriend at his home in California.

Kurt Crain: The South Alabama associate head football coach, who once played in the NFL, shot himself in April 2012. He had had reportedly been suffering from a severe prostate infection.

Ray Easterling: Also in April, this one-time Atlanta Falcons star shot himself at home after struggling to cope with dementia.

O.J. Murdock: In July, the 25-year-old Tennessee Titans wide receiver fatally shot himself while sitting in his car after texting his coach to apologise.

Video: Kansas City football player shoots his girlfriend dead and then kills himself

DM.has('rcpv2002644021001','BCVideo');

Richie McCaw ready to wreck England hopes

Captain McCaw never forgets the time England actually BEAT the All Blacks…

|

UPDATED:

00:02 GMT, 1 December 2012

Richie McCaw is always a man to fear. On Saturday at Twickenham, he will have more reason than usual to terrorise England.

The New Zealand captain plays his 116th international before taking a six-month sabbatical and will want to sign off with a performance to remember.

He will be aiming for 80 minutes of devastating rugby that lets the All Blacks know what they will be missing.

Modest: Richie McCaw has every reason to perform to his devastating best against England

Modest: Richie McCaw has every reason to perform to his devastating best against England

Rolling on: All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen drives a cart into Twickenham on Friday

Rolling on: All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen drives a cart into Twickenham on Friday

McCaw is too modest to talk about his own impact on the rugby field but he did deliver the ominous message that he is feeling fresh, fit and strong.

The flanker has a long memory and recalls the last time the All Blacks lost to England, in 2003, very clearly.

'There's always a bit of atmosphere around and there's history, too,' he said.

'The first time I played England in 2003, we got knocked over. Then they won the World Cup and since then it meant they were the team to beat.'

The All Blacks' efforts should not be hindered by illness. McCaw reported a clean bill of health for a team hit by a stomach bug earlier this week: 'It might have been interesting if it had been Friday night, not Tuesday night.

'We're lucky it wasn't. It would have knocked the stuffing out of a few guys. Hopefully, it won't take too much out of us.'

There are two secrets to McCaw's decade of dominance as an openside flanker – invisibility and supreme physicality.

He has forever pushed the boundaries of the law at the breakdown, yet has by and large escaped punishment from referees.

His uncanny knack of getting away with it, of pushing gamesmanship to the limit around the ruck, has made him almost unstoppable as the best turnover merchant in the history of the professional game.

Eyes on the ball: Dan Carter hones his kicking skills on Friday

Eyes on the ball: Dan Carter hones his kicking skills on Friday

Fit for purpose: Captain McCaw was in training on Thursday

Fit for purpose: Captain McCaw was in training on Thursday

The second factor is his fitness. The All Blacks do crucifying fitness drills, then McCaw stays behind for extra work.

At the World Cup he was playing with metal pins rattling in a broken foot. His performances during New Zealand's triumphant campaign prompted commentators to say he was a better player on one leg than most players are on two.

At 6ft 1in he is not the biggest, yet there is an aura of you-shall-not-pass about him.

McCaw, helped by a foot operation to heal three broken bones, has pieced himself back together so successfully that he has played a full part in one of the All Blacks' most glorious years, which reaches its finale today.

His goal is to return in the middle of next year refreshed in an attempt to lead the All Blacks in the defence of the World Cup in 2015.

'We are going to give it a good go,' said the 31-year-old modestly about continuing a career that has already made him the most capped New Zealand player.

'But there's a bit of water to f low under the bridge and there are a few coaches who may have a say in the matter. If it doesn't happen, there's nothing lost in trying.'

Another challenge: McCaw's team-mates Ma'a Nonu (left) and Piri Weepu (right) took part in some wheelchair rugby

Another challenge: McCaw's team-mates Ma'a Nonu (left) and Piri Weepu (right) took part in some wheelchair rugby

Like a duck to water: Nonu seemed to be enjoying the variation of his sport

Like a duck to water: Nonu seemed to be enjoying the variation of his sport

McCaw recognises that he has no right to a return. Coach Steve Hansen has made it clear that likely replacement Sam Cane would make sure he would have to be at his best to reclaim his jersey next year.

McCaw's push for perfection has led to him putting on weight this year in an effort to keep up with changing trends in the professional world.

'I was a bit worried if the extra size would affect me but – especially in loose forwards – the game has gone in the direction of guys who can bring something physically.'

Bouncing back: Chris Robshaw hopes to improve on England's performance against Australia

Bouncing back: Chris Robshaw hopes to improve on England's performance against Australia

Flair: Owen Farrell wants to match Carter

Flair: Owen Farrell wants to match Carter

MEANWHILE… ENGLAND'S WOMEN SEEKING ALL BLACKS SCALP
Shiner: Katy McLean

England women's captain Katy McLean, sporting a shiner, hopes to lead her team to a first 3-0 Test whitewash over the All Blacks tonight at Twickenham following the men's Test.

England have won 16-13 and 17-8, but last year also took a 2-0 series lead only to draw the final game. Head coach Gary Street warned: 'The target is to take a 3-0 series win and I am confident we can do that.'

McCaw has also been working on his
ball-carrying skills. His winning desire remains ferocious to the extent
that he is not taking anything for granted today against Chris
Robshaw's England team.

He
was not prepared to criticise Robshaw for the controversy at the end of
last week's South Africa Test when the England captain's decision-
making was questioned by Owen Farrell.

What would McCaw, who has made those calls in 78 games, have done if a New Zealand player had questioned his authority

'Well, you mean one of the boys I run the philosophy that I am more than happy for the guys to speak up, but there comes a time when someone has to make a decision and once it's made you buy into it.'

And on his personal contribution to a great team, he added: 'I look back on this year and feel I've been reasonably consistent.

'There are parts you keep working on but if I look back I'm pretty satisfied.'

England have been warned.

Bradley Davies slams Andrew Hore"s punishment as lenient

I lose four days of my life… he gets a five-match ban: Concussed Davies slams Hore's lenient punishment for assault

|

UPDATED:

22:30 GMT, 28 November 2012

All Blacks hooker Andrew Hore escaped with a 'lenient' five-match ban for a dangerous assault on Bradley Davies that caused the Wales lock to 'lose four days of my life' from concussion.

Hore will miss Saturday's showdown against England but the suspension, reduced from a recommended eight to five weeks because of the 34-year-old's remorse and excellent disciplinary record, means he will miss only two competitive matches.

Davies, who does not know when he will play again, compared the ban to his own case from last season when he was suspended for seven weeks for a tip tackle against Ireland.

Getting off light: Hore arrives for his hearing in Bristol

Getting off light: Hore arrives for his hearing in Bristol

Getting off light: Hore arrives for his hearing in Bristol

Davies said: 'It is a bit lenient when you think I got a 14-week entry point reduced to seven for my tackle.

'I couldn't tell you how it happened until I saw it on TV, but my jaw is still hurting.

'It's rugby, it's done now and I
don't bear any grudges. I know exactly what he feels like. He will feel
terrible. You just can't explain why you did what you did.'

A statement from judicial officer
Lorne Crear described the incident at the start of last Saturday's game
against Wales as 'inherently dangerous, being a deliberate swinging of
the arm, delivered with significant force, causing serious injury'.

Davies is unlikely to play for two or
three weeks after Hore lashed out at him from behind, prompting Wales
coach Rob Howley to call it 'disgraceful'.

Assault: Hore (No 2) charges in and strikes Davies on the head

Assault: Hore (No 2) charges in and strikes Davies on the head

Assault: Hore (No 2) charges in and strikes Davies on the head

Assault: Hore (No 2) charges in and strikes Davies on the head

Assault: Hore (No 2) charges in and strikes Davies on the head

'It's three or four days of my life
gone,' Davies said. 'I lost short-term memory so the only thing I could
remember on Sunday was my dog and doing a plumbing course on the
Wednesday.

'Every day I do a concussion test and at the moment I just can't pass it.' Hore has expressed his regret.

He said: 'I want to say how bad I feel and how embarrassed I am to be in this situation.

'It is not the All Black way and I have let myself down and the team.

'I hope Bradley recovers and gets backup and running as soon as he can.

'I have been on the phone and talked
to him on Sunday about the incident. 'I have to go back and start
building a reputation as a good, clean, hard footy player.'

Concussed: Davies receives treatment on the pitch after the injury

Concussed: Davies receives treatment on the pitch after the injury

Neymar misses penalty for Brazil, then says he"s open to Europe move

Still want him Neymar admits Europe interest… but everyone's talking about his penalty miss

|

UPDATED:

11:32 GMT, 15 November 2012

Brazilian superstar Neymar has thrown the door open to a move to Europe… but maybe no-one's listening after proving on Wednesday night that be might just be human after all.

The Santos forward, often touted as the planet's best young player, was on penalty duty for his national team in their friendly with Colombia, and was handed the opportunity from the spot with a little over 10 minutes remaining, and the scores level.

Scroll down to see video of Neymar's astonishing miss

Sky high: Neymar's penalty in Brazil's draw with Colombia went miles over

Sky high: Neymar's penalty in Brazil's draw with Colombia went miles over

However, in what has to be one of the
worst misses in recent memory, Neymar skied his effort in spectacular
style, with those in the back row of New Jersey's MetLife Stadium top
tier at risk of being hit.

The game, Brazil's 1,000th, ended 1-1
after the 20-year-old had notched his 17th goal in 26 appearances for
his country, cancelling out Juan-Guillermo Cuadrado's opener.

Neymar has been heavily linked with a
host of Europe's top clubs, namely Barcelona and Manchester City, as
well as others in Serie A.

Still got it: Earlier, though, Neymar, showed his skills with the equaliser

Still got it: Earlier, though, Neymar, showed his skills with the equaliser

Still got it: Earlier, though, Neymar, showed his skills with the equaliser

And when asked if a move to England or Italy appealed, he said: 'They are both big countries with great teams and great national teams. I don't have any [specific] choices right now.

'I do dream about playing in Europe, but there's nothing concrete at this time. Maybe in the future.'

Maybe he'll be left off spot kick duty, though.

Steven Gerrard: My best England moments

Stevie Glee: My best (and worst moments) in an England shirt

PUBLISHED:

22:30 GMT, 13 November 2012

|

UPDATED:

22:30 GMT, 13 November 2012

Ahead of his landmark appearance against Sweden, England captain Steven Gerrard relives the best and worst moments from his previous 99 games for the Three Lions.

Greatest game: Germany 1 England 5, World Cup qualifier in Munich, Sep 2001.

Because of who it was against, the emphatic result, in their backyard and in a World Cup qualifier. It's difficult to beat that. (It was his sixth cap and first goal).

Making his point: Gerrard celebrates after scoring against Germany in 2001

Making his point: Gerrard celebrates after scoring against Germany in 2001

Best England team-mate: Paul Scholes

His game is very similar to mine and I appreciate what he's got, to see him in training and play alongside him. I like him as a person. What he's done at Manchester United as well. Yeah, Scholes. Or Wayne Rooney.

Best opponent: Zinedine Zidane

Magical feet. Feet like hands. Special.

French fancy: Gerrard cites Zidane as the best opponent he has faced in an England shirt

French fancy: Gerrard cites Zidane as the best opponent he has faced in an England shirt

Other fond memories:

Scoring at tournaments, leading the team out and getting wins at tournaments.

The Barmy Army when they get behind you. The whole country in the tournaments, the way it buzzes, when you see the TV and the way the country completely changes.

Although they have often finished in disappointment with penalty shootouts, the whole experience of going away with England and being the leader of a great team gives me memories that will live with me for ever.

Greek tragedy: Gerrard says his display in the 2002 World Cup qualifier against Greece was his worst for England

Greek tragedy: Gerrard says his display in the World Cup qualifier against Greece was his worst for England

Worst performance…

I always go back to the game against Greece when Beckham scored the worldy free-kick. That was a disappointing performance by me, on the back of me being out a bit late past bedtime. So that's a bad memory

The top three England goals:v Germany, World Cup qualifier in Munich, September 2001

I've scored many a good goal for Liverpool and I have 19 goals for England but this is up there in my top three. The pitch being wet helped; if it had been dry it might not have gone in, but they are the bits of luck you need to score good goals and win big games.

v Macedonia, European Championships qualifier at Southampton, October 2002

That was a decent strike, a volley.

v Hungary, friendly at Wembley, August 2010

I ran past three men in the area and scored. I don't know how I did it, but there you go (It was his last goal).

Jonny Wilkinson keen to earn British Lions place for tour of Australia

Lionheart Wilkinson is ready for one last roar Down Under to end painful memory of 11 years ago

|

UPDATED:

22:05 GMT, 3 October 2012

Jonny Wilkinson retired from Test rugby at the end of last year and he doesn’t regret doing so, despite fearing that he would. But he is ready to make an exception to that decision, in order to fill the career void which is ‘niggling’ him.

The former World Cup-winning England fly half wants to play for the Lions again, next summer, when they go back to Australia – scene of the near-miss in 2001 which remains raw in his memory.

A month ago, upon being confirmed as the head coach for the 2013 tour, Warren Gatland revealed that he would consider selecting Wilkinson even though he is no longer involved in the international game. Now, the iconic No 10 has declared his readiness to answer the call if it comes.

Ready to roar: Former England fly half Jonny Wilkinson is keen to go to Australia with the British Lions

Ready to roar: Former England fly half Jonny Wilkinson is keen to go to Australia with the British Lions

At the age of 33, he remains a potent force in France’s Top 14 league, where his assured exploits guided Toulon to six straight wins at the start of this season, before they lost last weekend, while he was rested. Should Wilkinson maintain his fine form at Biarritz on Saturday, and in the weeks and months ahead, he could make a compelling case for inclusion in the Lions squad.

While Gatland has various stand off contenders, from Ireland’s Jonny Sexton to Rhys Priestland of Wales and Toby Flood or Owen Farrell from England, none of them possess the Test pedigree that Wilkinson can offer. It is impossible to discount the notion that he could make the cut after standing down from England duties – just as Lawrence Dallaglio did in 2005.

And Wilkinson has the will to join the crusade Down Under, as he indicated on Wednesday. ‘There’s no way I could say no,’ he said. ‘In terms of what that represents, everything about it, it’s enormous – such a fabulous thing.

‘The joy is the fact it doesn’t have to come with international rugby. You start, you give it everything and you finish and say thanks very much. For me, that is the beauty of it. It doesn’t matter where you come from. You have got six weeks, get your boots on and get into it.’

First taste: Wilkinson's first Lions Tour was in 2001 with the narrow defeat to Australia

First taste: Wilkinson's first Lions Tour was in 2001 with the narrow defeat to Australia

Reflecting on Gatland’s encouraging remarks, he added: ‘It’s difficult for Warren Gatland. People are going to ask him questions and he’s going to respond with respect. I’m focused on having a massive season at Toulon, but selection is out of my control. I appreciate I’m playing in France – not so much out of sight, out of mind, but a little bit further away – and there are a lot of guys doing a lot of good things in home nations rugby at the moment.’

Eleven years ago, Wilkinson was the Lions’ first-choice fly half in the pulsating series against the Wallabies which ended in an agonising 2-1 defeat after the tourists had claimed a sensational victory in the opening Test in Brisbane.

Recollections of that disappointment remain painfully fresh to this day and provide an obvious focal point for his ambitions now. The chance to go back to Australia and right that wrong would be a prospect to savour.

Ultimate disappointment: Wilkinson falls to his knees after his the Lions lost the Third Test match against Australia in 2001

Ultimate disappointment: Wilkinson falls to his knees after his the Lions lost the Third Test match against Australia in 2001

'It is niggling away at me,’ he said, about the lack of a Lions series win on his CV. ‘In 2001, I sat in the changing-room after the third Test and it felt like a World Cup Final loss. As disappointments go, it was up there, definitely.

'So much had gone into getting to a position of having a shot at it. It’s like trying to run a marathon, getting to the 25th mile and someone saying, “That’s it”. To complete one you need to go right back to the start, knowing how hard the 25 miles were and knowing you could fall after 10 miles next time, like we did in 2005.

'Australia were on fire at the time and that first Test was incredible. The second Test was incredible up to a point and the third Test was just a great game. Knowing we had a shot, the disappointment was ridiculous.’ Yet, for all his desire to take part in one last epic tour, Wilkinson harbours an ‘element of realism’ about his hopes of a call-up.

‘I’m a 33-year-old foreign player in France,’ he said. ‘I’m not England’s mainstay fly-half, leading the team. All I can do is play and see if I fit into those plans. If I don’t, I’ll just have to make the best of what I’ve got here which, let’s face it, is good enough.’

Winning kick: Wilkinson 2003

Now: Wilkinson with the cup

Then and now: Wilkinson's drop kick won the World Cup for England in 2003 against Australia, and he holds the trophy nine years later in France

On Wednesday, his status as an ambassador for the 2015 World Cup in England took him to a cemetery here, perched on a hill above the glistening Mediterranean, to lay a wreath of roses at the grave of William Webb Ellis – credited as the founder of rugby.

The trophy named after him was once more within Wilkinson’s grasp, as it was famously in 2003, when his extra-time drop goal gave Sir Clive Woodward’s team their last push to global glory.

Later, the former Newcastle prodigy spoke of his deliberations about the future – about whether or not to keep playing when his current contract with Toulon expires at the end of this season.

New life: Wilkinson is making a name for himself in France's Top 14 with Toulon

New life: Wilkinson is making a name for himself in France's Top 14 with Toulon

‘The decision is so difficult,’ he said, before explaining that his priority is to bow out on a high, not fade away.

‘It scares me more than anything that someone should turn around and say, “We’ll take him on because he is this guy, he did this in the past, he hangs around, he signs a few things, he doesn’t get angry, seems to be relatively patient” – that that might count more than what I’m doing on the field.’ At this stage, there is precious little chance of that scenario coming to pass.

Wilkinson also outlined his desire to progress from playing into coaching, in a mentoring role akin to that of Dave Alred, his own kicking guru over so many years. He has already been assisting the other kickers at Toulon and in time that yearning to pass on accumulated wisdom will become all-consuming.

But for now, he won’t consider becoming a player-coach. For now, he remains a player of considerable quality. For now, while he is still going strong, he wants to be a Lion again.

For all the latest news on Rugby World Cup 2015 in England join The Front Row, the official RWC 2015 ezine, at www.rugbyworldcup.com/signup