Tag Archives: soldier

VIDEO: Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina stars as Roman soldier in new film

VIDEO: All hail Reina as Liverpool keeper stars as Roman soldier in new film

By
Dave Wood

PUBLISHED:

13:15 GMT, 19 March 2013

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UPDATED:

19:35 GMT, 19 March 2013

Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina took time out from preparing for crucial World Cup qualifiers to show off his acting skills.

The Spaniard, who is in line to make a rare appearance for the Roja after first choice Iker Casillas was ruled out of the upcoming matches against Finland and France, donned classic Roman garb to star as a soldier in a new short-film called 'Invictus, el correo del Cesar.'

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Film star: Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina

Film star: Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina

Hot seat: Cesc Fabregas (centre) and David Villa (right) were at the premiere

Hot seat: Cesc Fabregas (centre) and David Villa (right) were at the premiere

The film is directed by Javier Fesser, who has won three Baftas including Best Director and Best Original
Screenplay for 'The Way' in 2008 and Best Live Action Short Film for
'That ritmillo' in 1995.

The film's premiere was held in Madrid on Monday and Spanish stars David Villa, Xavi, Cesc Fabregas and Jordi Alba were among the audience.

The film is being bankrolled by insurance company Plus Ultra Seguros, who also use Reina to front their advertising campaigns.

Reina also used his trip to Spain to reiterate his commitment to Liverpool after being linked as a potential replacement for wantaway Victor Valdes.

'[A move to Barcelona] is not in my hands and the rumour mongering is part of that,' Reina told Spanish newspaper AS. 'They're such a great club, but I'm happy at Liverpool.'

Video: Reina the actor

Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina dons Roman gear for advert

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James McClean poppy snub: Police probe death threats

Police probe McClean death threats after Sunderland star's poppy snub

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UPDATED:

12:12 GMT, 19 November 2012

Police have opened an investigation into allegations that Sunderland winger James McClean has been the target of death threats.

The 23-year-old was criticised for his decision not to wear a Remembrance Day poppy on his shirt during the Black Cats' 2-1 defeat at Everton last weekend.

The Republic of Ireland international subsequently received a mixed response from the travelling Sunderland supporters when he was introduced as a second-half substitute during Sunday's 3-1 victory at Fulham.

Threat: McClean refused to wear a poppy in Sunderland's game against Everton

Threat: McClean refused to wear a poppy in Sunderland's game against Everton

It is understood that threats have
been directed towards McClean on Twitter, a social networking site which
the player no longer uses, with police confirming yesterday they are
investigating.

A statement released by Northumbria
Police read: 'Police are carrying out inquiries following a third party
report of threats made on social networking sites.

'Officers have spoken to Sunderland AFC and inquiries are ongoing.'

Substitute: McClean came off the bench in Sunderland's win over Fulham

Substitute: McClean came off the bench in Sunderland's win over Fulham

After Sunday's game, Black Cats
manager Martin O'Neill confirmed McClean had received death threats, and
backed him to rise above any negative reaction from fans concerning his
choice not to wear a poppy.

O'Neill said: 'James will deal with it (the booing).

'I think it is to do with the issue last week, it's a free choice in this world.

'James has lived with a lot of things – he's getting death threats too now so that doesn't help.'

Ex-British soldier Cody Lachey
posted pictures of bullets on McClean's Twitter timeline and one of his
tweets said: 'he deserves to be shot dead + body dragged past the
cenotaph!!'

Anti-terror police were told of the
threats and police investigated them. The 29-year-old doorman has not
been charged and has said since he is no longer a threat to the
Sunderland player.

It was a scar on one of Sunderland's better afternoons where they won their first away match since February.

Brendan Rodgers back Jamie Carragher

He has it all: Rodgers backs veteran Carragher to soldier on at Liverpool

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UPDATED:

21:47 GMT, 19 September 2012

Brendan Rodgers has backed Jamie Carragher to prolong his playing career beyond this season as he insisted Liverpool’s future must contain a role for the club legend.

Carragher, 34, will make his 705th appearance for Liverpool when he captains an inexperienced side against Young Boys Berne in the Europa League on Thursday evening.

Starts, however, have been hard to come by for Carragher since Rodgers became manager and the defender, who is in the last year of his contract, raised the prospect in an interview last weekend of retiring next summer.

Future: Brendan Rodgers (left) believes Jamie Carragher has a key role to play at Liverpool

Future: Brendan Rodgers (left) believes Jamie Carragher has a key role to play at Liverpool

MATCH PREVIEW

Young Boys: (4-1-4-1): Wolfli: Sutter, Ojala, Veskovac,Raimondi: Spycher: Farnerud, Zarate, Schneuwly, Nuzzolo: Bobadilla.

Liverpool: (4-3-3): Jones: Wisdom, Carragher, Coates, Enrique: Henderson, Sahin, Suso: Assaidi, Pacheco, Downing.

Referee: Michael Koukoulakis (Greece)

Rodgers, though, is adamant that advancing years will not stop Carragher making a contribution going forward and believes it is vital he remains at Anfield, whether it is as a player or a coach.

‘I had a conversation with Jamie when I first came in,’ said Rodgers.

‘He wasn’t sure about where he was at in his career. He has been a stalwart at this club and was a regular until last season.

‘But I’ve been so impressed by him on and off the pitch. I think he can play on. He is one of the guys who is the soul of this club and there has to be a place for someone like him. Whether he wants to play on is up to him.

‘I arrived here and heard these stories about him kicking the ball long up the pitch, but this is one of the best technical players we have – left foot, right foot; his touch on the ball, his reading of the game and his tactical intelligence. He has it all.

‘No doubt there is a role for him later on but there is no reason why he cannot play on from what I’ve seen over the last few months. He is a great guy and he wants what is best for the football club.’

Stalwart: Carragher has had a glittering career at Liverpool, including winning the Champions League

Stalwart: Carragher has had a glittering career at Liverpool, including winning the Champions League

Included: Brendan Rodgers (right) believes the defender has a future at the club under his tenure

Included: Brendan Rodgers (right) believes the defender has a future at the club under his tenure

That may be true but this has certainly been a period of readjustment for Carragher. He has not started in the Barclays Premier League, as Martin Skrtel and Daniel Agger have established themselves as Rodgers’ first choice defensive partnership.

Yet for all the disappointment he would inevitably feel about not featuring of a weekend, there has not been the slightest murmur of discontent from Carragher and his professionalism and attitude have left an indelible mark on Rodgers.

‘Seeing him work so hard and not giving him a shirt is the hardest part of my job,’ Rodgers continued. ‘Guys like that you want to put in the team when it matters.

'This game matters, but all players want to play in the Premier League and not picking him is the most difficult part of my job.

‘He is an incredible character and it is easy to see why he has played over 700 games for Liverpool. He is 150 per cent commitment and works to a standstill every day.’

It is quite possible that not one of the team that starts Thursday’s game here will be in the 11 that Rodgers selects to face Manchester United on Sunday and there is no disguising where Liverpool’s priorities lie.

Young Boys coach Martin Rueda has
cast doubt on how many changes Liverpool will make from the side that
played against Sunderland last weekend but Rodgers is wary of what
happened the last time he had to play two games in quick succession.

Before
the international break, Liverpool drew 1-1 with Hearts in their Europa
League play-off at Anfield before losing insipidly against Arsenal
three days later; for that reason, Rodgers is mindful of what demands he
places on certain players.

Soul of the club: Carragher (centre) attended the vigil for the 96 victims of the Hillsborough disaster

Soul of the club: Carragher (centre) attended the vigil for the 96 victims of the Hillsborough disaster

‘I would love to be able to enter a team in every competition that has a real chance of winning,’ said Rodgers, who has left nine first team regulars on Merseyside, including Steven Gerrard, Luis Suarez and Pepe Reina.

‘But the reality is we need to see where we go and I need to manage game-by-game. I can understand how people will look at this.

'But I have to do what is best for Liverpool, even though I am fully aware that the expectation every time you pull a Liverpool shirt on is that you have to win.’

Six Nations 2012: Lee Dickson on the march

Soldier boy Dickson on the march after stunning Rome raid

Eight years ago, Lee Dickson enrolled for a Royal Marines training course and was ready to follow in his Army father's footsteps. Then Newcastle intervened. They gave him a route into professional rugby.

And now, having served his apprenticeship at Kingston Park before moving to Northampton to hone his craft, the 26-year-old scrum-half has had his biggest break this month.

After being included in Stuart Lancaster's England squad for the RBS Six Nations, Dickson edged ahead of Joe Simpson to claim a replacement place.

Starring role: Dickson impressed during his 30-minute cameo against Italy

Starring role: Dickson impressed during his 30-minute cameo against Italy

And following an eye – catching 30-minute appearance in Rome, he is in contention to replace Ben Youngs as the starting No 9 in the national team.

Dickson was born in Verden, Germany, to an English mother and Scottish father, and represented Scotland at Under 19 level before committing to the Red Rose cause.

'My Dad, Steve, was a major in the Royal Signals – he's just come out of it now,' said Dickson. 'He was in it for 20 to 30 years and went to Iraq, Bosnia – he did it all! It was near enough dead cert that I would follow him into the Forces.

'I had signed up for the Marines pre-training but then John Fletcher and Peter Walton asked me to join the Newcastle academy, so I decided to follow my dream. Now, eight years after they offered me that chance, I am playing for England.

'I was born in Germany while my Dad was over there. When I was 12, we decided it was right for the family and for us growing up that we would go to boarding school at Barnard Castle.

'Mum and Dad wanted to give us the best opportunity to play rugby, but I also excelled at other sports. I loved cricket and squash, athletics and hockey. The school was brilliant for everything.'

Looking forward: Dickson hopes he can become nail down a regular spot

Looking forward: Dickson hopes he can become nail down a regular spot

Looking forward: Dickson hopes he can become nail down a regular spot

The 'us' Dickson refers to is himself and older brother, Karl, a scrum-half at Harlequins. They have always shared a fierce sibling rivalry and after the win over Scotland, Karl was called into the England squad amid fears Lee had broken his hand.

The prognosis turned out to be far less serious and Lee was able to galvanise a toiling team at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome. When he came on, England were trailing but Dickson brought a renewed sense of urgency.

'I knew exactly what I needed to do – just be myself and add tempo to the game,' he said. 'That's what I've done all year for Northampton.

'I pride myself on getting the ball away from the breakdown quickly and I think I managed that last weekend. I am very confident I can do that from the start, get my forwards working hard and organising defence, but Youngsy is a great player in his own right.'

Dickson's frustration at being unable to make the breakthrough into the England ranks had been long-standing. For Youngs, the frustration at his struggle for form has been comparatively recent.

The Leicester scrum-half has been England's first-choice No 9 more or less unchecked for 18 months, but his place is under threat following a particularly hesitant display in Rome.

Hesitant: Youngs didn't have his best game for England in Rome

Hesitant: Youngs didn't have his best game for England in Rome

Yet he was adamant that circumstances – in terms of tactics and selection – have conspired to deprive him of the opportunity to show his true colours.

'It didn't go as well as I would have liked,' said Youngs. 'In the first half we lacked a lot of tempo – we were quite predictable, that doesn't suit me and it is very easy to defend. We're not going to break teams down like that. We over-thought it by keeping it tight but there are a lot of new players and a new system.

'It comes down to combinations – I've never played with Charlie (Hodgson), I've never played with Dows (Phil Dowson), never played with Robbo (Chris Robshaw) . . . it takes time.'

Youngs was visibly irritated when he was replaced by Dickson. He said: 'I was frustrated at myself. I felt the game was just breaking up, which is what I enjoy. I need to stop overthinking things and just play my natural game. I think I play best when I play what I see. Perhaps I haven't been doing that of late, I've been trying to force things.'

Head to head: Youngs v Dickson