Philippe Coutinho’s importance to Liverpool may be difficult to put a price on following his latest exemplary showing in the 5-1 thumping of Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League on Saturday.The focus in recent weeks has surrounded the impressive Mohamed Salah and rightly so following his rich vein of form where he has found the net seven times in his last four league games to make him the division’s top scorer.The Egyptian has played a major part in Liverpool achieving five wins from their last six league fixtures. Only table toppers Manchester City have enjoyed a better run of form.But Coutinho’s presence is also a defining factor and he was the standout player as the Reds recorded an emphatic victory at the Amex Stadium.Brighton could not contain the Brazilian forward, who was rested for the midweek win over Stoke City, and was unstoppable as he helped set up three goals and also scored a superb free kick.Manager Juergen Klopp will be thrilled that his influential talisman has appeared to move on from the speculation that saw him strongly linked with a big money move to Barcelona before the close season transfer deadline.Should Coutinho continue to play as he did on Saturday, Liverpool will be major contenders for silverware this season.After setting up Emre Can and Roberto Firmino for the opening two goals, he then produced a sublime piece of skill to get his name on the scoresheet.The 25-year-old found the bottom corner underneath a free kick wall, evoking memories of a similar strike in an FA Cup quarter-final against West Ham United in February of last year.advertisementCoutinho earned special praise from his manager who also thanked his club analysts for pointing out that he was capable of such a hit in their pre-match preparations.When asked about Coutinho’s performance, Klopp said: “Very good. I am really happy about it. The free kick — credit to the analysts. He still needs the technique to do it.”Coutinho has now had a hand in 13 goals in his last 11 Premier League games (seven goals, six assists).Brighton manager Chris Hughton did not doubt that he is world class and said he was the major difference between the two teams.”If he is having a good day he is a world class player. We are all aware of the reports in the last transfer window and that is the reason,” Hughton said. “He is a world class player.”The biggest test for Liverpool and Klopp could come again in January if Barcelona renew their interest in the Brazilian.Liverpool supporters will be praying he stays at Anfield to inspire many more emphatic victories.
IOC bars India from hosting future sporting events after Pakistani shooters denied visas
The International Olympic Committee have suspended all Indian applications to host future events and urged international sports federations not to stage competitions in the country after two Pakistanis were denied visas to compete in New Delhi.The denial of entry visas for two shooters due to take part in a World Cup event in the Indian capital this weekend followed last week’s attack by a Pakistan-based militant group in Pulwama, which killed at least 40 CRPF paramilitary police.India has accused its neighbour of not doing enough to control the militant groups responsible for the Kashmir attacks. Pakistan has denied any involvement.The IOC said the refusal of visas for competitors went against the principles of the Olympic charter relating to discrimination and political interference from the host country.”Since becoming aware of the issue, and in spite of intense last-minute … efforts … and discussions with the Indian government authorities, no solution has been found to allow the Pakistani delegation to enter India in time to compete,” the IOC statement said.”As a result, the IOC Executive Board also decided to suspend all discussions with the Indian NOC and government regarding the potential applications for hosting future sports and Olympic-related events in India,” it said.The body also urged all international sports federations not to hold events in India, or grant hosting rights to the country for future competitions, until the government had provided “clear written guarantees” to ensure access for all athletes.The Indian Olympic Association last year laid out an ambitious roadmap to host the Youth Olympics in 2026, the Asian Games in 2030 and the Summer Olympics for the first time in 2032.advertisementThe shooters were scheduled to take part in the 25m pistol event and the IOC said two spots at next year’s Tokyo Olympics that had been up for grabs in that competition had been revoked.The International Shooting Sport Federation said on Wednesday it faced “an urgent situation as Pakistani athletes cannot get entry visas to participate in the competition” because of the Kashmir attack.The IOC said Olympic berths would still be up for grabs in other events.”The IOC restricted the withdrawal of recognition as an Olympic qualification event to the 25m rapid fire pistol competition in which the two Pakistani athletes were supposed to participate,” it said.”This happened in the interest of the other 500 athletes from 61 countries participating in the other events who are already in India for their competition.”Also Read | ISSF hints at scrapping Olympic quota at World Cup, India hopeful of solution
Ayurveda practitioners to be appointed as community health officers
Kolkata: State Ayush department has decided to appoint Ayurveda practitioners as community health officers at the health and wellness centres across the state.According to sources in the Ayush department, the process of recruiting Ayurveda practitioner as the CHO at various health and wellness centres, has been initiated by the state government. The government has already given its approval to induct the Ayurveda practitioners as the CHOs. It may be mentioned here that the process of recruiting the CHO at various community health centre began in 2017. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaIn the following year, around 510 nursing staffers were recruited as CHOs at various community health centers in the state. But, Ayurveda practitioners were not brought under this ambit. Many Ayurveda practitioners and their organisations articulated their demands of being recruited as the CHOs and also urged the government in this regard. It was learnt that besides nursing professionals, the Ayurveda practitioners will also be recruited as the CHOs at health and wellness centres. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayIt may also be mentioned here that all the community health centres in the districts have already been upgraded to health and wellness centre for providing better health care facilities to the patients. More than 10,300 primary health centres are in the process of getting upgraded to health and wellness centers. State health department has already started training progremmes for the nursing professional before they are inducted as the CHO at these centers. Where there is an acute shortage of doctors at various health and wellness centres in the rural areas, these trained CHOs are supposed to provide primary health care. The Bengal government already started six months bridge course for nurses under the National Health Mission. Around 1920 posts of CHOs have been created in the state for the financial year 2019-20. It is up to the state government to decide in what ratio they would induct the nursing personnel and the ayurveda practitioners. Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee laid enormous emphasis on the development of the Ayurveda infrastructure in the state. The Union Health Ministry earlier urged all the state governments to recruit both Ayurveda practitioners and nurses as CHOs at all the health and wellness centers after they complete the bridge course. The steps have been taken after the Centre found a shortage of doctors at various health centres in the rural areas. The Bengal chapter of National Ayurveda Students’ and Youth Association (NASYA) also urged the top government officials to appoint the Ayurveda practitioners as CHOs. “We are in the process of recruiting Ayurveda practitioners as community health officers at various health wellness centers,” a senior official at the state Ayush department said.