nnavaro’s first game as coach of China ended in a 1-0 loss

Winning the opening match of the China Cup proved to be a mission impossible for the host natio

nal team, which fell 1-0 to Thailand on Thursday night in Nanning, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region.

While spectators at the sold-out 60,000-seat Guangxi Sports Center loudly vented their an

ger as the home squad left the pitch, within minutes hundreds of millions of netizens expressed their dis

appointment online, making the loss one of the hottest topics trending on Chinese social media.

By Friday morning, related topics had been viewed more

than 100 million times on Weibo, generating waves of criticism from fans and media.

“Team China was suppressed by the Thailand squad throu

ghout the whole match,” said Han Qiaosheng, a well-known sports commentator and TV anchor.

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“If Thailand had not missed several good opportunities, the

Chinese squad would be in an even more embarrassing position.

“Chinese soccer is no longer among the best in Asia … for a long time now, we have been in th

e second tier. Although we call our league the Chinese Super League, the word ‘super’ only exists in the name.”

Retired Chinese international Li Yi, who helped Shenzhen win the 2004 CSL title, also expressed his concern online.

“The current Thailand national team players are all in their prim

e, and they will be strong opponents for Team China for the next few years,” said Li.

“Now the old generation of Chinese players is retiring, but the young guns still cannot sho

ulder the responsibility. The qualifying games for the next World Cup are coming. We must try harder!”

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Before the start of the China Cup, Cannavaro said that fans

and media need to focus on long term development of Chinese soccer instead of what happens at the tournament.

Cannavaro said he sought out the opinion of Lippi, who now serves as an adviser, including player selection.

“The China Cup players are all those who had good performances in the previous rounds of the CSL, along with young players,” said Cannavaro.

“What we need is a sustainable system that will allow the best

coaches all around the world to work here in the future. It’s not a short-term play. It will take time.”

“It’s like building a house-the first job is to build a solid foundation,” he said

“Based on that, we can have success. Compared to Japan and South Korea, their plans started decades ago.

“They are 20 to 25 years ahead of China in terms of their soccer development.”

Another factor was that Cannavaro did not recall China’s best striker, Wu Lei, who is now playing for Espanyol in La Liga.

Other experienced veterans, such as captain Zheng Zhi, were passed over in order to make way for younger players.

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Vietnamese truck enters China via the Second Beilun River

The bridge will greatly alleviate traffic burden on the First Beilun River Bridge three kilomet

ers away, which was previously the only means of shipping personnel and cargo to or from Dongxing Checkpoint.

Statistics from immigration authorities show that 12.19 million people and 47,056 vehicles passed over the old bridge in 2018, far beyond its maximum capacity.

The new bridge is now designated for freight vehicles, while the First Be

ilun River Bridge is reserved for personnel. This could save 30 minutes or more in custo

ms clearance time for each consignment, according to Huang Xiong, deputy chief of Dongxing Customs.

1.jpgIn early 2015, the Barack Obama administration tried desperately to block the United King

dom and several other European countries from joining the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank by ac

cusing, without any basis, the then newly established bank of possible low environmental and governance standards.

The real reason, according to former US treasury secretary Larry Summers, was that the Obama adm

inistration could not secure any funding from the Republican-controlled Congress to join the AIIB. And to s

ave itself from embarrassment, the US administration tried to prevent European countries from joining the bank.

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Many banks have set up new offices in Germany, France,

  ther EU countries to safeguard their regional business after Brexit. Financial services companies also have to move substantial asset

s there to satisfy EU regulators. Assets worth at least £1 trillion ($1.3 trillion) are leaving the country, according to consultancy EY.

  Sony (SNE) and Panasonic (PCRFF) are both moving their European headquarters to the Netherlands.

  Manufacturing comapanies, which need their supply chains to function seamlessly, have also made changes. Nissa

n (NSANF) has scrapped plans to build a new model in the United Kingdom, citing uncertainty over Brexit. Ger

man engineering group Schaeffler (SCFLF) is shutting two of its three factories in Britain for the same reason.

  The biggest risk

  The most dangerous scenario — a disorderly Brexit — could still come to pass.

  EU leaders on Thursday granted the United Kingdom a short delay to Brexit, but the

country could still crash out of the bloc unless UK lawmakers agree a path forward.

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Identity of ‘Shanghai vagrant’ confirmed by employer

The identity of a Shanghai vagrant, who has become an overnight online celebrity after videos of him explaining Chinese classics to passers-by went viral on Chin

ese social media, has been confirmed by his employer, the auditing office of Shanghai’s Xuhui district government.

The office said the vagrant called Shen Wei became one of its employees in 1986 but

has been on sick leave since 1993, during which he has been paid with a basic salary.

For the past seven years, Shen, usually in rags and tangled long hair, has lived near the metro st

ation of Yanggao South Station and collected garbage every day. He began to get online attention over the past few

days when videos taken by passers-by, and then online broadcasters, show his eloquence, resourceful knowledge of Chinese classics and “wor

ds of wisdom” as he advises onlookers to spend more time on reading rather than taking videos of him.

He spends most of his spare time reading books, mostly Chinese classics which he has bought wit

h the money he earns from garbage collecting. He refuses to receive help and told the Red Star News reporter that he has around 10

0,000 yuan ($14,991) in his bank account. The money comes from his 2,000 yuan monthly salary and his father’s savings.

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Liu Gang, the founder of PayNews.net, a Hangzhou-based

online news service focusing on China’s mobile payment industry, said to Securities Daily he

expects the run-up of cashless payments will maintain for three to five years until it takes up as much sha

re of consumption as possible, as consumers incrementally wade farther into cashless payments.

Data from PBOC revealed banking financial institutions in 2018 conducted 220.31 billion deals in non-cash paym

ents involving 3,768.67 trillion yuan, a rise of 36.94 percent and 0.23 percent year-on-year respectively.

In the same period non-banking payment institutions, mainly referring to third-party online payment service providers, had 530.61 b

illion deals, surging 85.05 percent, and the transaction volume was 208.07 trillion yuan, up 45.23 percent fro

m the previous year. Mobile payment platforms Alipay and WeChat Pay occupy over 90 percent of market share.

By the end of 2018, a total of 424 commercial banks and 115 payment institutio

ns were connected to a unified clearing platform set up by the Payment and Clearing Association of China, PBOC said.

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As swine fever threat falls, most quarantines liftedrantines in

China has lifted pig quarantines in most of the areas where outbreaks of African swine fever have bee

n found, signaling a steady slowdown in the spread of the virus, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said on Tuesday.

Since the first outbreak of the deadly pig disease was discovered in Au

gust in Northeast China’s Liaoning province, 113 cases in 28 provincial-level regions have be

en confirmed by the ministry. Restrictions on the transport of pigs in 105 of those cases have been lifted.

The ministry has imposed strict quarantine measures in affecte

d areas and ramped up supervision of pig farms, transport businesses and the pork proc

essing industry after the onset of the highly contagious viral disease. Humans are not affected.

Yu Kangzhen, vice-minister of agriculture and rural affairs, said the spread of the virus has

slowed because of measures imposed by the authorities, but added that it’s difficult to wipe out the disease in the short term.

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Some have said the killings robbed New Zealand of its i

innocence. But that is probably being too simplistic as we live in a complex world.

Indeed, New Zealand is about as far away as you can get from the violence we see alm

ost daily in other war-torn places. That is not to say New Zealand has been immune to violence.

The quiet seaside town of Aramoana, near Dunedin, saw 13 people gunned down in No

vember 1990 when a local resident went berserk after an argument with his next-door neighbor. Five years lat

er, in April 1995, across the Tasman Sea in Australia, there was the Port Arthur massacre on the island state of Tas

mania where 35 people were killed by a lone gunman. That was an act of pure evil rather than of hate or race.

Both acts of violence saw changes to gun laws. In Australia’s case, it w

as a radical overhaul. New Zealand will change its gun laws in 10 days, said Ardern on Monday. In N

ew Zealand, it is estimated 250,000 gun-owners own about 1.5 million firearms and the laws governing guns are weak and exploited.

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We were crying when we heard the news. That’s why we

got on the first flight,” said Gulshad Ali from Auckland, New Zeal

and. “We just came here to support the family and friends and people who’ve been affected.”

Ali said she didn’t know the Mustafas but extended her sympathies to them.

Calls of Allahu Akbar could be heard in surrounding streets as guests were led through Islamic prayers.Mourners attend a fu

neral for victims of the twin mosque attacks at the Memorial Park cemetery in Christchurch on March 20, 2019.

Mourners then emerged from the tent, carrying open wooden bo

xes on their shoulders to the burial site where 50 graves have been dug.

Guests consider it a mark of respect to throw dirt on the graves of the dead to help send them to the next life.

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GiottoPress by Enrique Chavez