Euro 2020: Fratellis’ Yes Sir I Can Boogie charity cover backed by celebs



A GLASGOW band’s Euros song backed by a number of Scottish celebrities has been officially released as a charity single.

The Fratellis covered Yes Sir, I Can Boogie for the Chris Evans Breakfast Show earlier this year, racking up 300,000 views on YouTube in the process.

The band’s version of Baccara’s 1977 disco classic came after Scotland qualified for the Euro 2020 tournament. Following the team’s historic win, they celebrated by singing the song together in their dressing room and sparked a nationwide connection to the hit.

The Fratellis are set to donate 100% of the income from their single to three children’s charities – the Tartan Army Children’s Charity, SoccerAid and The Eilidh Brown Memorial Fund.

The Tartan Army charity said it was “hugely grateful” for the cash to help disadvantaged Scots children, while Gordon Brown of the Eilidh Brown Memorial Fund said they are “so honoured to be involved” in the project.

“Jon Fratelli is a patron for our charity and without him Baz and Mince we would not have been able to build our respite home for children living with cancer. They are best guys and best band, we love them,” he added.

The band’s charity cover has been backed by a range of Scottish celebrities, with author Irvine Welsh declaring: “Great tune, great band, great cause.”

Meanwhile Outlander star Sam Heughan said: “Fantastic and a great cause too!”

READ MORE: Outlander: Sam Heughan says season six filming over, extended season seven on way

Other famous faces promoting the charity song online include Martin Compston, KT Tunstall, Gordon Smart, Greg Hemphill and Simon Donnelly.

The Fratellis version has also been endorsed by Mary Dostal, widow of Yes Sir, I Can Boogie lyricist Frank Dostal.

She said: “Of course I always knew this is a great song – and every time we get a request for permission to make a new version I have to ask myself if Frank (my husband) would like it! This time I know for sure he would. The Fratellis have shown what potential this song has! A great version and myself my children and grandchildren just love it – well done!”

Click here to listen to the song on streaming services.



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Israel Folau announces rugby league return for Southport Tigers in move backed by Clive Palmer


Israel Folau said he had “no regrets” as he announced his intention to return to rugby league with Gold Coast team Southport Tigers, in a move which could see him suiting up as soon as next week.

Businessman Clive Palmer joined the code-hopping Folau at a press conference in Brisbane, where he announced that the 32-year-old former Origin player has signed for the Tigers for the remainder of the season.

Folau said he could line up as soon as next week against the Burleigh Bears, but his registration with the Queensland Rugby League (QRL) is still pending.

Folau, whose two brothers currently play at the Tigers, said that he was “grateful for this opportunity”.

“I’m excited to be here and to link up with Clive, the opportunity he has given me and my family is something I’m very grateful for.

“I’m just grateful for that opportunity to get back on the field and put the boots back on. I’m excited.”

Palmer said there is “no legal basis” to stop Folau from playing and he would support Folau “100 per cent”.

“I will be very surprised if he is not registered,” Palmer said.

Palmer said Folau is “undoubtedly the world’s number one rugby player” and that he had been “unfairly punished and persecuted for his religious beliefs”.

“We hope the Queensland Rugby League will register Israel in accordance with the law.”

The QRL released a statement on Friday confirming it had received an application for Folau’s registration and is currently considering it.

The QRL said it would provide an update once the process had been completed.

The former dual-code international saw his Rugby Australia contract terminated in 2019 after he refused to take down a controversial social media post in which he said “hell awaits” gay people.

Folau said his comments had nothing to do with playing the game and he had no regrets.

“I believe everything, from my faith in god, happens for a reason.

“I am so thankful for what I’ve gone through because it has bought me a lot closer to god. So I wouldn’t change anything.”

Folau reached an out of court settlement with Rugby Australia before moving to France to play rugby league in the Super League with Catalans.

Catalans have indicated that they will demand compensation to release Folau from his contract, which runs until the end of 2021.

Palmer said that the Brisbane Broncos, who held Folau’s last rugby league registration in Australia, had given clearance for him to sign with the Tigers.

St George Illawarra made a bid to bring Folau back into the NRL earlier this season, but withdrew the application after a backlash from sponsors and supporters.

Folau last played in the NRL in 2010, when he made the last of his 91 matches for Brisbane and Melbourne before signing up to play in the AFL with the GWS Giants.

Folau then played 73 Tests for the Wallabies between 2013 and 2019. 

A recent online petition from the Australian Christian Lobby garnered 12,000 signatures demanding Folau be allowed to play in the NRL.

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Glen Kamara and Rangers backed by Micah Richards as pundit rips into ‘joke’ UEFA bans and glaring double standard


Popular pundit Micah Richards has defended Rangers midfielder Glen Kamara – and insists UEFA’s call to sanction the Finn was a “joke”.

Slavia Prague defender Ondrej Kudela was found guilty by the governing body of targeting Kamara with sickening racial abuse in last month’s Europa League tie and copped the minimum sanction of a 10-match ban.

But the Ibrox star was also handed a three-game suspension for an altercation with Kudela after the match, while Kemar Roofe was given four matches for a tackle on Slavia keeper Ondrej Kolar.

Former Manchester City full-back Richards is known for his affable nature on TV and his on-air partnership with Roy Keane but is also never afraid to call out issues of racism and social injustice.

So he was disgusted to learn of UEFA’s solution.

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He reckons Kamara’s punishment should have never been handed out while insisting Kudela’s “sinister” actions deserved harsher treatment.

Richards wrote in his Daily Mail column: “I’m not suggesting (UEFA president Aleksander) Ceferin is racist. But his organisation’s track record in tackling the issues that matter has been dreadful.

“Whenever racism has been involved, UEFA have failed to follow through with meaningful action.

“They can argue that they are being pro-active in the fight but I will never forget that this is the organisation that fined Nicklas Bendtner £80,000 for showing a bookmaker’s branding on his boxer shorts at Euro 2012 but only fined Serbia £65,000 when England’s Under 21 players were racially abused that same year.



Glen Kamara (2-L) of Rangers argues with Ondrej Kudela (R) of Prague
Kudela was handed a 10-game ban for racism while Kamara was given three matches

“Look at what happened this month with the Slavia Prague defender Ondrej Kudela and Rangers midfielder Glen Kamara. UEFA thought 10 games was a sufficient ban for Kudela – 10 games? It was one of the most sinister examples of racism I have seen, sliding up to Kamara and whispering in his ear.

“Kamara ended up with a three-match suspension for an incident that happened afterwards in the tunnel. So when this young lad goes through one of the worst experiences he has endured on a football pitch and wants to defend himself, UEFA still want to punish him.

“What an absolute joke that is.

“Two wrongs don’t make a right but if Ceferin – who people say is a good guy – had five per cent of the passion when challenging racism as he had when taking on those clubs who had plotted against UEFA, the sport would be in a better place.

“UEFA also threatened players that they would be banned from playing for their country at this summer’s Euros if their club was among the European Super League rebels.

“Just think about that for a minute. Players who had done absolutely nothing wrong whatsoever were going to be punished because UEFA were panicking about the impact on their finances.

“That made me so angry – how can money mean so much to these people?”



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Christian tv station backed by a registered charity broadcast serves a triple dose of unfounded Coronavirus vaccine scare stories


Evangelical Christian tv station Loveworld was fined £125,000 last month by Ofcom for broadcasting fake news about Coronavirus.

It was the second time the station had been hauled up by the regulator during the pandemic.

So what did Loveworld do? Carry on regardless seems to be the answer.

Last month’s ruling came after the station’s founder, Pastor Chris Oyakhilome of the Christ Embassy church, suggested that vaccines contained nanochips to control people as part of a “New World Order” conspiracy.

The same series of programmes, called Global Day of Prayer, included claims that the pandemic was caused by 5G technology, face masks posed health hazards and quarantine facilities were comparable to Nazi concentration camps.

Loveworld told Ofcom that it was “anxious to remedy any issues”, but since then two shows featuring presenters James Cordwell and Christian Kitoko spouted more alarmist and unfounded nonsense.



Presenters James Cordwell and Christian Kitoko

Cordwell claimed the vaccine “could either kill you or just give you an antibody reaction” depending on “what your body is made up of, what your character is, your spirit, your feeling.”

Later he said: “There’s more information comes out every day that older people are dying as a result of taking the shot.” He also claimed that a pregnant woman had a miscarriage within hours of being vaccinated.

Kitoko claimed: “The vaccine is not working at all.”

The station must now broadcast a summary of the Ofcom ruling that these were “materially misleading and potentially harmful statements”, while the regulator considers additional sanctions.

It ruled: “We were very concerned that broadcasting materially misleading claims about vaccines which exaggerate the evidence for and scale of risks of vaccination, could not only cause potential harm to individual viewers but also potentially contribute to wider societal harms.”

You can read the full adjudication here.

A Charity Commission report from November 2019 concluded that there had been “serious misconduct and/or mismanagement” at Christ Embassy. The Commission intended to remove two of the trustees, but they resigned before the process was completed.

The report shows particular concern over the potential conflict of interest caused by the fact that a trustee at Christ Embassy had also been the sole shareholder at Loveworld since its incorporation, and the charity poured significant funds – £1.2million over one two-year period –  into Loveworld.

The Commission report concluded: “Following the appointment of a new Board of Trustees on 12 April 2016, significant progress has been made to address the governance and improve oversight and control.”

This latest scandal over the Loveworld suggests that it might be time for another look at the charitable status of Christ Embassy.

More generally, it’s worth asking whether promoting religion should, by itself, be grounds for allowing an organisation to become a registered charity, or whether some concrete evidence of doing some good in society should be shown.



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Liberal MPs pour cold water on inquiry backed by Frydenberg into bank lending for coal projects | Australian politics


The “modern” Liberals Andrew Bragg and Tim Wilson have brushed off calls from within the government for a fresh inquiry into banks’ decisions to stop lending to coal companies.

On Wednesday the treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, signed up to a plan put forward by the Liberal National MP George Christensen to launch an inquiry through the trade and investment growth committee to query how climate change is impacting banks’ lending decisions.

The move comes as 29% of ANZ shareholders approved a resolution for the bank to “to reduce exposure to fossil fuels in line with the Paris Agreement’s climate change goals”.

All four major banks have signalled they will align their portfolios to a target of net zero emissions by 2050, with most aiming to cease lending to thermal coal companies by 2030.

The moves have prompted a furious backlash from Nationals MPs who want a new coal-fired power station in north Queensland, with some even calling to boycott banks including ANZ.

Christensen, who has denied the link between climate change and the severity of natural disasters, wants the committee he chairs to set up an inquiry to grill financial regulators – the Australian Securities and Investments Commission and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority – and banks over plans to pull back on lending or insuring mining projects because of climate change.

Frydenberg reportedly told the Sydney Morning Herald: “It is only appropriate that the parliament be able to examine trends in banking, insurance and superannuation investment practices and how they may affect our resources sector and the regions in which they are based.”

Wilson, who chairs the house economics committee, told Guardian Australia that his committee “explores the legitimate issues of climate and sovereign risk … frequently during our hearings with the banks and regulators”.

“It might be wise to review the house economics transcripts first before starting a new inquiry, but that is a matter for the trade and investment committee,” he said.

Bragg, a senator from New South Wales, told Sky News that environmental, social and governance risk is “a very legitimate measurement and framework for financial institutions to measure long-term risk, including the risk of climate change”.

“That is something we have been supporting as a government,” he said. “Ultimately, though, the judgment banks and financial institutions make on lending is a matter for those institutions.

“Environmental risk is no different from any other sort of risk – it’s an economic risk.”

As the Coalition continues to balance its inner-city liberal constituency with regional voters who are more supportive of fossil fuel industries, Labor has also faced internal struggles about whether it should back a gas-led recovery.

The shadow treasurer, Jim Chalmers, told reporters in Logan that central banks, regulators and financial institutions had done “important work” on “how we manage the financial and investor risk associated with climate change”.

Chalmers said Nationals, including the resources minister, Keith Pitt, and Christensen, lived in an “alternate universe” and disputed the importance of tackling climate change.

“I think it speaks volumes about this treasurer that he places a higher premium on placating the George Christensens of this world rather than engaging properly and rationally in the important work that’s going on to make sure that we can manage financial and investor risk associated with climate change.

“We want to see this inquiry based on facts, not based on conspiracy theories.”

At the ANZ annual general meeting on Wednesday, 29% of investors representing nearly $19bn of investment backed a resolution demanding less exposure to fossil fuels. The number is almost double the 15% achieved for a similar resolution last year.

Despite the Nationals’ anger at banks, environmental activists at Market Forces have accused the big four of taking too long to wind up coal loans and inconsistent efforts subjecting oil and gas to similar scrutiny.

NAB and Westpac are reviewing their approach to funding oil and gas, a move Market Forces wants replicated at ANZ and the Commonwealth Bank.

The Reserve Bank of Australia has said climate change poses a rise to financial stability and has joined central banks in warning that global GDP could fall 25% below the expected level by 2100 if the world does not act to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions.

Apra announced in February it would undertake a climate change financial risk vulnerability assessment of the major banks in 2021.

It estimates that Australia will need to spend about $3.5bn a year to limit damage from climate-related natural disasters, with the cost of responding to them after the fact is likely to be 11 times greater.



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Shoot 360, A Training Facility Backed By NBA Players, Opens In Atlanta


Shoot 360 has now arrived in the metro-Atlanta area behind investments from NBA players such as Derrick Favors and Trae Young.

The new Atlanta facility consists of a 19,000-square-foot building with six shooting cages and six skill cages, as well as a basketball court with Trae Young’s logo. There is a computerized basketball hoop in each shooting cage that allows shooters to see the statistics behind each of their specific shots and allows them to play games. The skill cages enable players to play passing and dribbling games that are all done through a massive computerized screen.

“Shoot 360’s ability to integrate technology for interactive training and challenges, as well as detailed live feedback, is extremely unique and is every kid’s dream. That coupled with the court space for classes and training with an amazing staff makes for a really special recipe,” part-owner Jeremiah Boswell said.

There are hopes to expand to several locations across Atlanta, but right now, this first location opened up in Alpharetta, Georgia, this past week.

“Having Trae Young and Derrick Favors involved in Shoot 360 Atlanta demonstrates the significance and impact the facility will have on the basketball community,” Boswell said.

Other locations around the country involve NBA players such as Jamal Crawford, Zaza Pachulia and Thad Young. Fred Jones, a former Indiana Pacers player, owns one in Indianapolis and was recently in Atlanta helping the new facility with their opening.

“Playing basketball my whole life made me feel like every gym was the same,” Jones said. “Until the day I walked into Shoot 360. It opened my eyes to the future of basketball training.”

Being in the massive facility gives a feel of what the future of youth basketball could become. Kids, or even pros, who sign up for the monthly membership can come to the gym every day and use the unique training features by signing up daily on an app. There is no telling how much better a player could become by using these new ways to train.

“I told pros like Jamal Crawford and Thad Young that they need to come see the facility,” Jones said of the past. “Their kids came to the facility first, and that same day I got a call from them asking how to get involved.”



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US Supreme Court rejects Texas lawsuit backed by Donald Trump to overturn his election loss



The US Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a bid by Texas to overturn the results of the presidential election, which Republican Donald Trump lost to Democrat Joe Biden, in a fresh setback for the president.

The longshot suit lodged late Tuesday against four states key in the 3 November vote – Michigan, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin – challenged Mr Biden’s victory in each of the four.

But the Supreme Court justices said Texas – which voted for Mr Trump – “has not demonstrated a judicially cognisable interest in the manner in which another State conducts its elections.”

The suit had been seen as audacious and barely legally sound, given that no one state has any legal right to interfere in another’s voting processes. Even so, it was backed by 106 Republican lawmakers and 17 state attorneys general.

Texas alleged that the results in the other four states were “unconstitutional” because of their heavy use of “fraud-prone” mail-in votes during the coronavirus pandemic.

It offered no proof of significant fraud, and it didn’t challenge the use of mailed ballots in states Mr Trump won.

The suit cited numerous alleged examples of potential fraud already repeatedly rejected by courts in dozens of Trump campaign cases.

Minutes before the ruling came down Mr Trump released a new TV ad again falsely claiming that the election was stolen, calling it an “outrage” and telling supporters to contact their legislators.

Earlier Friday he urged the Supreme Court to show “great Wisdom and Courage” in a tweet that claimed that the “American People” needed the Texas lawsuit to win.

He also retweeted a conspiracy theory about voter fraud declaring that “Joe Biden will not set foot in that White House.”



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Sydney Sixers star James Vince has backed the BBL’s new Power Surge rule as a game-changer


Sydney Sixers’ English international James Vince has backed the BBL’s new Power Surge rule as a game-changer even though his Sixers failed to capitalise on the innovation in their opening loss to Hobart on Thursday.

The Power Surge, a two-over power play moved into the second half of the innings, was unveiled during the Sixers’ clash against the Hurricanes.

Hobart capitalised on the rule with 19 runs off the 15th over of their innings.

The big hitting changed the momentum of the game given the Hurricanes were 4/96 after 14 overs before they unleashed four fours in the first five balls.

The Sixers then failed to score big during their Power Surge, with Hobart snaring the vital wickets of Vince and Jack Edwards.

Despite this, the Sixers’ star Englishman, who has played in five different countries, believes the Power Surge is a winner for the BBL.

“I think it makes it interesting and it adds another dimension,” said Vince, who was the Sixers‘ top scorer in the defending champion’s 16-run loss to the Hobart.

“I don’t know how much the bowlers who have to bowl for two overs will enjoy it, but I guess it is an opportunity and adds a bit more excitement.

“It is interesting. I guess we will try and learn each game and try and find something that works for us as a team.

“The Power Surge when we took it from a batting point of view maybe changed the momentum a little bit.

“I thought their (Hobart’s) guys bowled two good overs, and it gave them a bit of a lift.

“They took out the wickets of me and Edwards, which kind of got them back into the game.

“But I don’t necessarily think there is a right or a wrong, you just have to see how it plays out.

“But when I was batting, there was definitely a bit more going on in my head and trying to think about the Power Surge and keeping the 10-over bonus point in the back of my mind as well.”

The Sixers failed to beat Hobart, but the franchise put in an early nomination for highlight of the season with Jordan Silk’s freakish full-length reach over the boundary to save a certain six during the final ball of Hobart’s Power Surge.

Vince was blown away watching on as Silk defied the laws of gravity.

“I sort of sat there in awe a bit,” he said.

“It was the best bit of fielding I’ve seen at a game live.

“He is capable of doing stuff like that, but that is probably right on the limit of what is possible.

“He is always saving runs in the field, but that was next level.”

The Sixers know they were in a strong position to beat Hobart in the season opener after taking both Hurricanes openers in the first seven balls of the game.

Hobart recovered to 8/178 on the back of Tim David’s 58 runs in just 33 balls before the Sixers fell away late.

The reigning champions are bitterly disappointed with the result, but Vince knows his teammates can’t afford to dwell for too long.

The Sixers play the Melbourne Renegades Blundstone Arena in Hobart on Sunday from 7.15pm.

“The game come pretty thick and fast, so you get a chance to bounce back quickly on Sunday,” he said.

“Hopefully, we get our first win on the board.”



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Jose Mourinho backed for “one last hurrah” after Liverpool and Man City woes


Tottenham have been tipped to break Liverpool and Manchester City’s domestic dominance by winning the Premier League this season.

Jose Mourinho’s side sit in fifth position in the table and are unbeaten since the first game of the season.

Liverpool are looking to retain the title they won last year, while Pep Guardiola is hoping to see his City side be top dogs in England again.

However, if the Reds are to win the league again this season they will have to do so without inspirational defender Virgil van Dijk.



Virgil van Dijk will miss the remainder of the season with an ACL injury



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The Netherlands international has been ruled out for the season with an anterior cruciate ligament injury, a blow that former Liverpool midfielder Dietmar Hamann believes could be pivotal.

“It will have a huge effect on the title race,” Hamann said on van Dijk’s injury.

“When you lose Van Dijk, he is the best centre-back in the world at the moment.

“What the guy has done since he came to the club – he galvanised them and changed them from one of the most vulnerable defensively to one of the best.



Dietmar Hamann believes Manchester City have peaked under Pep Guardiola

“It also affects your team going forward, because if Van Dijk is not in the team they’re probably a bit more cautious. He’s clearly a big loss.”

Hamann also doesn’t think Man City will be able to regain their title, with the German believing they have “peaked” under Guardiola.

“City haven’t got any strikers at the moment, I think they’ve peaked under Guardiola,” Hamann said. “I don’t see them winning the Premier League or the Champions League in the next few years.

“I think a manager like Guardiola can’t be at a club for more than four or five years. He’s done that at Man City and if you see the players they bring in, there is no continuity and I don’t see them improving enough with the money they’ve spent.”

Who will win the Premier League title this season? Have your say here.



Mourinho could win Tottenham’s first title since 1961

And Hamann is backing Spurs to make the most of his former clubs’ issues, with Mourinho in place to win a fourth title.

He added: “The team I really like at the moment is Spurs.

“I watched them on Monday [in the 1-0 win at Burnley ] and they are a very organised team

“If they are in the mix come March, April, I think Mourinho may have one last hurrah in him.”

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