Leicester manager Nigel Pearson has offered high praise for the way Esteban Cambiasso has adapted to a relegation fight during his first year in English football. Cambiasso has at club level become the most decorated player in Argentinian history, even winning more honours than Real Madrid legend Alfredo Di Stefano, over an illustrious career spanning 17 years. But the 34-year-old has become entrenched in Leicester’s culture since arriving on a free transfer last summer and even told reporters last month that helping the Foxes secure Barclays Premier League survival would feel like winning another piece of silverware. The former Argentina international, who has previously played for Real Madrid, River Plate and Inter Milan, has been instrumental all season but particularly during the recent run which has brought six wins from the last seven matches and put Pearson’s team three points clear of the relegation zone. “His impact is difficult to quantify but it’s been a very positive one, there’s no doubt about that,” said Pearson following Saturday’s 2-0 victory over Southampton. “If you take away the influence on other players and just look at his own performances, what he brings to the side in terms of his vision and game understanding, then I think he’s been a fantastic addition to our squad. “Also where he takes an awful lot of credit is for someone with the CV he has and the amount of trophies and, if you like, positive situations he’s been in, to embrace a relegation battle in the way he has done I think gives you an indication of his professional outlook on his role within the squad. “I couldn’t give him any higher compliment than to recognise that. “I know that if he was five years younger we wouldn’t have him, or two years younger even. But I’m very pleased he’s with us and that he’s contributed fantastically to the team’s plight and situation. He’s dug in like everyone else has dug in.” Cambiasso is making Leicester wait over a new contract, with his current deal set to expire at the end of the season, as he waits to see how the campaign pans out. But Pearson would love to keep the 2010 Champions League winner. Press Association “Of course I want him to stay but he’s already pointed out that he wants to wait until the end of the season and that’s fine. For sure we’d like to keep him,” said the Foxes boss. Southampton’s defeat at the King Power Stadium came courtesy of another sluggish start and manager Ronald Koeman is becoming concerned by the trend. Both Leicester goals came inside the opening 19 minutes. It followed another slow start at Sunderland last week when Koeman’s men also found themselves behind at the same stage of the match. For most of the season, Southampton appeared capable of challenging for a place in the top four but their form has since tailed off. Defeat to Leicester was a fourth successive away loss and extended Southampton’s overall winless run to four games, all but ending their hopes of catching Liverpool in fifth place, with their campaign in danger of unravelling due to the poor run. Koeman was surprised to see his team make the same mistake for the second straight match and the Dutchman wants it rectified against Aston Villa next time out. He said: “The reason that we lost is because if you start a game like we did then it’s very difficult to change it. “Last week we had a big problem to start on a good level and today again. They [Leicester] had more spirit in the beginning. “They’re a strong team at the moment and full of confidence. It’s a difficult place to come, but we made it more difficult. “Still, there are two games to play. Next week we play at home and we need to finish on a good way for the fans. “We expect to bring our level and to have the belief in ourselves. I think that’s the difference in the last few games.”
Facebook22Tweet0Pin0Submitted by Child Care Action CouncilThe Child Care Action Council will be serving up fun and generosity for their 11th Annual Warm Hearts Luncheon, raising funds for their early learning Family Services program. Community members will come together for kids on Thursday, February 21 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at the Lacey Community Center. Guests will enjoy a soup buffet made by culinary students at South Puget Sound Community College, and listen to speakers discuss the importance of early learning and quality child care.Child Care Action Council provides a full spectrum of services surrounding early education from, training child care providers to meeting families in their homes to give guidance on being their child’s first and best teacher. “Our focus is our earliest learners, ages birth to 5 years old,” said Gary Burris, Executive Director of Child Care Action Council. “We know that 90% of brain development happens in the first five years and having quality early learning experiences are crucial to creating a solid foundation upon which all later learning, behavior, and health depend.”Each year, Child Care Action Council has seen its Warm Hearts fundraiser grow and become a critical piece in raising funds for their Family Services program that supports over 6,000 children in our community. Last year, Child Care Action Council was able to raise over $19,000 and the new goal for this year is $22,000. As grant funding becomes tougher and tougher to secure, this event has been a crucial component to continuing the many free early literacy and math, and family support services throughout Thurston, Mason, and Grays Harbor counties.The Family Service program encompasses a number of early learning services that nurture child development and support children and families so they can thrive. Raising A Reader is Child Care Action Council’s flagship early literacy service that brings new books into homes of 1,300 children through a book rotation program at their child care, Head Start, or ECEAP centers. This program inspires the love of reading and increases daily reading habitats.The Family Services program also funds the four Kaleidoscope Play and Learn groups, a free weekly playgroup for children and their caregivers to learn and develop through play-based activities and parent support; BlockFest that brings an interactive block exhibit to over 1,200 children in our community and promotes early math skills; SafeKids Thurston County that serves over 5,000 children and their families with resources and information on how to prevent childhood injuries in the home, at school, and on the way; and Margie’s Crisis Nursery that finds and pays for temporary child care for families when they are in a crisis situation.The foundation of support for the Family Services program is raised through event sponsorships. Leading that charge for the past four years has been WSECU as title sponsor of the Warm Hearts luncheon. In addition to the WSECU’s title sponsorship, Child Care Action Council is honored to have the following organizations support this year’s Warm Hearts luncheon: Molina Healthcare, Neil Woody McSwain & Company, Olympia Federal Savings, Alaffia, Commencement Bank, FORMA Construction, Kiley Juergens Wealth Management, TwinStar Credit Union, Bron’s Automotive, Graphic Communications, Heritage Bank, HomeStreet Bank, Nicholson & Associates Insurance, GHB Insurance, The Other Guys, Inc., Tammy’s Ceramic Shop, Timberland Bank, Sound Credit Union.If you are interested in supporting early learning opportunities for all children in our community, please join Child Care Action Council for their Warm Hearts luncheon. Reserve your spot today by emailing Child Care Action Council at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 360-786-8907 x112.
WOOLF AWARD TROPHY TO BE PRESENTED AFTER THE 6TH RACE SUNDAY AT SANTA ANITA ARCADIA, Calif. (March 10, 2016)–As America’s first Triple Crown Champion jockey in 37 years, Victor Espinoza helped Thoroughbred racing project a positive image far beyond the confines of the Thoroughbred industry throughout 2015, thus elevating the sport’s exposure and acceptance to a level perhaps not seen since the 1970s. Accordingly, Espinoza, a 43-year-old native of Mexico City, has been selected by a vote of jockeys nationwide as the winner of Santa Anita’s highly coveted 2016 George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award and he will accept the award in a Winner’s Circle ceremony following Sunday’s sixth race.“It’s quite an honor for any rider to be selected by his peers as the winner of such a prestigious award,” said Terry Meyocks, National Manager of the Jockeys’ Guild. “And I would like to congratulate Victor on this great achievement.”In addition to numerous national television appearances through the 2015 Triple Crown and last fall’s Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Espinoza also remained tireless in his efforts on behalf of cancer-stricken youth, donating 10 percent of his winnings to support pediatric cancer research at City of Hope, in nearby Duarte.With the Bob Baffert-trained American Pharoah providing the horsepower, Espinoza gleefully proclaimed himself “The luckiest Mexican on earth,” on national television following their win in the Belmont Stakes June 6.In addition to winning the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont, Espinoza and Santa Anita-based American Pharoah won last year’s Grade II Rebel Stakes, Grade I Arkansas Derby, Grade I Haskell Invitational and, in a performance for the ages, the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic by 6 ½ lengths on Oct. 31–all the while elevating the profile of jockeys nationwide and generating tremendous ratings on a consistent basis.Born on a dairy farm near Mexico City, Espinoza is the 11th of 12 children. A three-time ESPY Award winner, Espinoza has three career Kentucky Derby wins, three Preakness victories, three Breeders’ Cup wins and he’s taken 11 Southern California riding titles.First presented by Santa Anita in 1950, Espinoza is the 67th winner of the Woolf Award, which seeks to honor riders whose careers and personal character earn esteem for the individual and Thoroughbred racing. The remaining four finalists for this year’s award, which can only be won once during a rider’s career, were Joe Bravo, Javier Castellano, Gerard Melancon and Joe Steiner.