This is pretty awesome — wish we could get something like it for hoops.Shout out to my boy TS for putting it together.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!
Before: Take the Farm Friends SurveyAfter: Farm Friends Asks: What’s Your Fantasy Meal? Subject lines are more important than you might think. On average, at least 100 emails flood your constituents’ inboxes every single day. That’s a lot of digital noise to shout over, which is why your email subject lines need as much TLC as the content inside. Here’s a simple, four-step makeover to help transform your subject lines from ho-hum to “Oh, wow!” 1. State the ObviousDon’t dance around the point of your email. Talk straight to your recipients about what they’ll find inside. You can be creative and pique curiosity, but for best results, make sure you answer the question, “What’s this email about?” If you make readers think too hard, they may just opt to delete without reading and move on to their next message. For newsletters, highlight the key piece of content you’re sending—a subject line like “Fall 2013 Newsletter” is easy to gloss over in a busy inbox.Before: All the news that’s fit to emailAfter: The Top 10 Women in Science 4. Keep It ShortMake every word count. After you’ve written your subject line, go back and delete words or phrases that don’t add value. Ideally, stick with around 50 characters or less. Some studies have found that the 28- to 39-character range is the sweet spot for maximum open rates.Before: Final reminder to make reservations to attend the Strutting Dog Gala on October 15, 2013!After: Strutting Dog Gala: Last day to RSVP! 3. Avoid the Spam TrapWhy bother with killer content if your subject line gets it caught in the spam filter? Keep your message front and center by avoiding things like cute symbols and special characters—spam filter magnets that attract the wrong kind of attention. Subject lines containing the words help, RE, or FWD are often interpreted as scams.Before: ♥♥♥You will LOVE these PREMIUM GIFTS for your donation!!!♥♥♥After: Cool donor gifts from Heart Healthy Houston! 2. Stand Out from the Crowd In a sea of emails, it helps to be a little different. Add a touch of visual interest with brackets, quotes, a smidge (just a smidge) of all caps, or an exclamation point (just one!). Personalize your subject line with the recipient’s city or state, which typically generate higher open rates than first or last names. Instead of telling people what’s inside, try asking a question that piques their curiosity.Before: SafeSurf loves its volunteersAfter: SafeSurf LOVES its volunteers! Before: Hot dog! Get down and boogie with your beagle!After: Join Long Island Pet Rescue’s Fall Frolic Before: RE: Help a veteran find a homeAfter Homes for Heroes Fall Fundraiser wants you! Revamping your subject lines with these simple tips can make a big difference in your email open rates. You might even see a boost in constituent engagement and giving!Don’t forget:Your email subject lines can show how much you respect your constituents’ busy schedules by telling them exactly what they’ll find inside.It’s okay to add a little visual interest to your subject line, just don’t overdo it and catch the eye of the spam filter instead.Short and sweet is best when it comes to subject lines. Always try to keep them under 50 characters. Before: Books for Kids is Coming to your neighborhoodAfter: Books for Kids is Coming to Newport!
The following post is a summary of Adam Grant’s presentation on his book Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success at the Conference on Volunteering and Service.In Give and Take, Adam Grant’s premise is that there is more to the secret of success than hard work, talent and luck – especially as the world continues to become more hyper-connected. What’s missing is generosity. Givers excel in a collaborative work environment, but can burn out easily if they don’t see the impact of their contributions or don’t learn how to set boundaries. This is especially true for people in helping professions such as nonprofit leadership, cause marketing and social responsibility.Here are Adam’s 4 tips for creating a cultures of successful givers at your organization.1. Get the right people on the bus (a nod to Jim Collins)Weed out the takers and encourage matches to take their cues from the givers. Rewarding giver behavior and helping matchers see the value in reciprocity with a net positive benefit will nudge your culture towards a collaborative, generous workplace.2. Reduce costsThink about the power of 5-minute favors. You don’t have to be Mother Theresa or Gandhi to call yourself a giver. Giver mentality is more about finding efficient ways to make low-cost gestures with high value to the receiver. You’ve heard of micro-volunteering? Think of it as micro-favors. If someone asks you for help and you know you are the best equipped to help and the act will only take you 5 minutes, say yes. Always. If you are not the best equipped to respond, point the person in a new direction to find the help they need.3. Show impactSome givers burn out others are energized by doing favors – why? Givers burn out when they can’t see the value of their impact. Think of ways to have authentic messengers demonstrate the value your staff creates every day. A message from the CEO is nice, but givers are more motivated by a thank you from a program beneficiary or an employee who gave in a personally meaningful way. Showing impact in a tangible way relates to the concept of the ‘identifiable victim’ or ‘singularity effect’ – people are more compassionate when they can relate to one person’s story.4. Encourage help-seekingA whopping 75-90% of helping starts with a request, yet people hesitate to ask for help – especially givers. Givers don’t want to be a burden and often confuse taking and receiving. We need to create work cultures that reward asking for help and make it ok for people to take it. Also, givers to ask for help so other people (namely matchers) have the opportunity to give and so givers know who can benefit from their help and how in the future.Here’s an example of how help-seeking improves results. Appletree Answers, a call center solutions provider, was experiencing 98% staff turnover each year. That’s a huge HR hiring burden to replace your staff every year. The company started internal employee wish program where employees could ask for help fulfilling their dreams and other employees could offer assistance to making those wishes come true. As a result of creating this culture of giving and receiving, staff turnover dropped to 33%.Your organization can create its own Reciprocity Ring. Here’s how.· Invite employees to join the program.· Have everyone participating make a request.· Everyone in the program then tries to help make those requests happen.· Everyone is both a giver and a receiver, so there is no stigma about asking for help.· Everyone gets better understanding of the resources in their network for future giving and receiving. by Kate Olsen, VP of Strategic Projects at Network for Good @Kate4Good
Is your nonprofit website sending the right message to potential donors? Year-end fundraising season will be here before you know it. Now is the time to clear away the cobwebs and roll out the welcome mat for prospective donors, volunteers, and those who may benefit from your work. If you haven’t updated your site in a while, you might give donors the impression that your organization is no longer active.Worried your site may say “move along” instead of “come on in”? Here are the top issues that can scare visitors away from your nonprofit website (and how to fix them).Broken linksThey’re not just aggravating and confusing for your website visitors, broken links can also be a big red flag for search engines like Google. Having internal links that don’t work or that don’t point to real content can affect how your site shows up in search.How to fix it: Most website platforms and content management systems have reporting that will show you the top pages that are returning an error. Taking a close look at your Google Analytics can help as well. Do some internal testing on your website to make sure all of your links are taking visitors where they should. Stale content Do you still have information about your “upcoming event” on your home page even though the “upcoming event” took place several months ago? Is the last post on your nonprofit’s blog from 2012? This is a surefire sign that no one in your organization is actually looking at your website. To your visitors, it says: we gave up.How to fix it: Make it someone’s responsibility to frequently review your website and do regular housekeeping. If you have a news feed or blog that shows up on your home page, make sure you’re adding new content frequently. If you don’t have a plan to add new items, remove these feeds from your pages. Dated designThis one is somewhat subjective, but there are certain hallmarks of an outdated web design: crazy animations, hard to read text (usually light text on dark background, or a veritable rainbow of font colors), randomly-placed images, to name a few. Geocities is dead. It’s time for your nonprofit website to move on to better things.How to fix it: A complete makeover would be nice, but if that’s not in the cards, focus on fixing the most egregious cosmetic issues within your current design and platform. Start with your key pages and branch out from there. Make it easy to read and remove anything that makes your site look like this. No contact informationThe lights may be on, but without obvious and current contact information, is anyone really home? Your contact details give people an easy way to ask questions and find out more, plus openly listing this information on your website is a sign of trust and transparency. How to fix it: Add your physical address, phone number, and a way to email you to the footer of your website. Place clear links to your “Contact Us” page within your site’s global navigation. No clear way to donateThis is the first thing I look for when I am asked to review an organization’s website, and it’s amazing how many nonprofits still don’t have a prominently placed donation button on every page of their website. Without a clear and highly visible way to donate, you’re effectively telling donors: we don’t need your money. How to fix it: Make your donate button big, bold, and above the fold of your website. Make sure your donate button actually says “Donate Now”, “Donate”, or “Give”. Fuzzy language won’t cut it here. Slow to loadOne Mississippi, two Mississippi … by three Mississippi your website better be finished loading, or most visitors will simply leave. It may not be fair, but people are impatient. They have better things to do than to wait for your carousel of images or Flash presentation to load. How to fix it: Start by confirming there are no technical problems with your website’s platform or hosting service. Then, take a hard look at your website’s key pages and see how you can streamline them by removing extraneous images, code, or other files that are bogging down your site. A reputable web developer can also provide suggestions for other improvements that can speed up your site. (Bonus: Decluttering your site will have a positive effect on potential donors, making it easy for them to figure out what it is you do and why they should care.) Not mobile friendlyWhen your nonprofit website is difficult to load (or completely dead) on a mobile device, you may as well not exist for that smartphone user. 56% of US adults are smartphone users, and they’re becoming more and more likely to read your emails and social media outreach on a mobile device. If your links take them to a site that’s non-functional on their phone, you’ve missed out on another opportunity to connect.How to fix it: You don’t need a complete overhaul to make your website more mobile friendly. Focus on a handful of key pages (think: home page, donation page, contact page, any other pages you point to regularly from emails or social media) and improve them with these 8 tips for making your nonprofit website mobile friendly. (Bonus: Most mobile-friendly website tweaks will improve usability overall.)What are your biggest website challenges? Have you made a recent change to your site that’s made a big difference? Chime in with your thoughts in the comments below.
We’ve all heard it before, “Give me your Rolodex, give me 20 names that I can contact.” It can be overwhelming to produce a big list of people who are eager to raise money for your cause. But what if 20 names is 19 too many? What if all you need is just one? This is the idea proposed by philanthropist Jeffrey Walker and fundraising expert Jennifer McCrea in their recent book, The Generosity Network.Reach out.Asking your nonprofit board members for just one person who might be interested in joining your cause will seem more manageable to them and is more likely to generate a thoughtful response. That way, you can meet with someone who is open to starting a relationship with you and—ultimately—your organization.Meet in an intimate setting.Invite your new contact to meet, but beware of asking them to your office! Conference rooms can be beautiful spaces: great for viewing PowerPoints, but actually hosting an intimate first meeting? Forget it! Go to coffee or breakfast so that you can be in a space that is made for conversation. In a coffee shop, sharing your story won’t come across as rehearsed the way it automatically would in a conference room or at someone’s desk. Context is everything.Form a connection.Remember, this first meeting isn’t a sales call; it’s a chance to authentically connect. Be ready to ask what your new contact truly values and consider saying, “For the record, I’m not going to ask you for money today.” If people think you’re just there to extract something from them, they might beworrying about your potential ask. If they’re only half listening, it will be hard to build a relationship of trust and explore a potential partnership. But don’t wait too long to ask for a commitment! It’s important to share what your organization is doing and what you could achieve together.For more ideas on developing a relationship with your donors and how to turn them from one-time customers into lifelong partners, access the archived webinar presentation of Nonprofit 911: Build Your Generosity Network with Jennifer McCrea and Jeff Walker.
These written words can do no justice to the presence, dignity and inspiration of this gentle man, a hero who, as a colleague and friend remarked, through his life has saved countless lives. Another colleague, who sat on my other side during the ceremony, said never in his life had he witnessed such a moving and motivating closing statement. Throughout the speech you could not hear a pin drop. Everyone was riveted. At the end of his speech, he received a long and well deserved standing ovation. Most of us admitted to having tears in our eyes, hard not to because most of us seemed not to have a tissue! After the formal closing by the Minister of Health of Zanzibar, many of the participants, especially the younger ones (the “new blood”) rushed to where Dr. Mahmoud Fathalla was to congratulate him, to shake his hand, and to have their photograph taken with him. We all agreed that this was a reminder of why we get up every day to do the work we do.Learn more about the conference and access the conference presentations at www.gmhc2013.com. Join the conference conversation on Twitter: #GMHC2013Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: We thank and we appreciate.We regret and we apologize.We promise, and yes, we can. We thank and we appreciate.We regret and we apologize.We promise, and yes, we can. Posted on January 24, 2013June 12, 2017By: Karen Beattie, Director of Fistula Care and Associate Vice President of EngenderHealthClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)This post is cross-posted from the EngenderHealth website.Reflections from a lifelong global women’s health advocate on the closing ceremony of the Global Maternal Health ConferenceIt was the end of three days of meetings, and I seriously considered skipping out on the closing plenary session. But – I knew Dr. Mahmoud Fathalla would be speaking and I have learned that one should never miss an opportunity to hear his thoughts. For those uninitiated, Dr. Fathalla is a professor at Assiut University in Egypt, a former head of the reproductive health division at WHO, and the father of the Safe Motherhood initiative. He was also a member of EngenderHealth’s Board of Directors for a long period of time.The Global Maternal Health Conference took place at the Arusha International Conference Center in Arusha, Northern Tanzania. The Center was for many years the home of the international tribunal that judged the actions of those involved in the genocide in Rwanda in 1994. Arusha is also close to the Rift Valley and Olduvai Gorge, for the longest time considered the cradle of humankind, although a spot in South Africa now holds the “cradle of humankind” title. At Laetoli, nearby to Olduvai Gorge, footprints of an early human ancestor were preserved in volcanic ash dating from 3.6 million years ago and were discovered in the 1970s. That brings me to Dr. Fathalla’s speech, entitled “A Message to the Lady of Laetoli.” Dr. Fathalla noted that one of the sets of footprints was deemed to be that of a lady, and because of the way the print was indented into the ash, it was widely held that she was carrying an infant on her left hip. He also noted that this individual or one of her sisters was our collective “mitochondrial mother.”Dr. Fathalla’s message to the Lady of Laetoli: We thank and we appreciate because we know the sacrifices and risks of women through the ages are the reasons we are here today. We know that maternal mortality was extremely high until recently. Where nothing is done to avert maternal mortality, “natural” mortality is around 1,000 to 1,500 per 100,000 live births. Dr. Fathalla cited a PRB 2011 paper that estimated the number of humans ever born was 107 billion and the population in mid-2011 was just under 7 billion. A stunning fact Dr. Fathalla gave is that more women have given up their lives in childbirth, for the survival of our species, than men have ever died in battle. So our very existence is the gift and sacrifice of women.We regret and we apologize and we cannot expect forgiveness. Women had to give up their lives when we did not have the means to prevent their deaths in pregnancy and childbirth. And yet, when we do have the means, we still leave them to die. We should plead guilty when we see that 800 women still die every day. An inconvenient truth is that they die because societies have yet to make the decision that their lives can be saved.We promise we will eradicate maternal mortality, and yes, we can, for several reasons:The work presented by participants at the GMHC Conference 2013 is evidence of the immense body of knowledge and commitment shared across disciplines and throughout all areas of the world. Dr. Fathalla was gratified and comforted by the “new blood” to carry on this work. He showed a picture of Malala, the young girl recently shot down for wanting an education and advocating for education on behalf of her peers. He was gratified that she is recovering and moved by the statements of her classmates that they would not be stopped from getting an education – and “they will win.”He noted the progress the world has made. Between 1990 and 2010, maternal deaths had dropped by 50%, but there still remains work to be done.The message from the representatives of the host country, Tanzania, that maternal health is a national priority and that it had experienced a 25% drop in maternal mortality between 2005 and 2010.The power of women, making their voices heard.He repeated his message to the Lady of Laetoli:
ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on July 1, 2013May 19, 2017Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)An expected 10,000 delegates will soon gather in Cape Town, South Africa for the International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA). The conference, with the theme of Now more than ever: targeting zero, will be held from December 7-11, 2013. The final day to submit an abstract for review is July 5th, 2013.About the conference:Reflecting the conference theme “Now More Than Ever: Targeting Zero” and UNAIDS “Getting to zero” mantra of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths, HIV prevention will be an important feature of this year’s ICASA plenary sessions.Starting at the very beginning of the HIV prevention spectrum, Dr Chewe Luo, Senior Advisor on HIV and AIDS at UNICEF, will present cutting edge strategies for the elimination of Mother-to-Child transmission (MTCT) in Africa. Shifting focus to youth Emmanuel Etim, the young and dynamic Project Co-ordinator of the African Union Youth Volunteer Corps, will in part address the road ahead for African youth to reach zero new HIV infections.Professor Christine Katlama, Head of the AIDS Unit, Department of Infectious Diseases at the renowned Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital in Paris, will look at the long-term complications of living with HIV, including the impact that HIV drug resistance has on prevention efforts.UNFPA’s Senior Advisor on HIV, Ms. Bidia Deperthes, will provide the broadest overview of Africa’s current effective prevention programmes and tools…Read more here.Learn about the five conference tracks.Review the abstract submission guidelines.Take a look at the key conference dates.Stay tuned on Twitter at @icasaconference.Visit the general conference site.The Maternal Health Task Force is currently coordinating a blog series on maternal health, HIV, and AIDS. To view the series, click here.For additional information about maternal health, HIV, and AIDS, visit our topic page.If you are interested in sharing a guest blog post for our series on maternal health, HIV, and AIDS, please contact Kate Mitchell (email@example.com) or Samantha Lattof (firstname.lastname@example.org).Share this:
Posted on December 5, 2014December 3, 2015Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Check out the following opportunities in Maternal HealthJobsResearch Fellow in Qualitative Methods for Impact Evaluation, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Deadline: Thursday, December, 18thResearch Fellow in Epidemiological Methods for Impact Evaluation, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Deadline: Thursday, December, 18thSenior Program Officer, Program Advocacy and Communications for Family Planning, Bill & Melinda Gates FoundationMonitoring and Evaluation Officer, PATH (based in South Africa)Communications Associate, Mobile Alliance for Maternal ActionProject Director for Fistula Care Plus, EngenderHealth ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Urban Health Conference ScholarshipSpecial Call for RMNCH Submissions for 12th International Conference on Urban Health, March 8-12, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Deadline: Friday, January 9th, 2015Scholarships are available for applicants from developing countries whose abstracts are accepted for presentationAreas of special interest include addressing disparities in access to maternal, newborn, and child health services, quality of services, and programs that target youth sexual and reproductive health behaviors to prevent unintended pregnancy. Abstracts that address reproductive, maternal, neonatal and child health (RMNCH) in the urban environment, especially approaches that target poor women and women living in slums are encouraged.Questions? Contact Dr. Selmin Jahan, email@example.comSubmit your abstract at www.icuh2015.orgShare this:
How do you fund your mission?A healthy nonprofit has multiple sources of funding, including individual giving. Depending entirely on grants or public funding is risky, as either could be lost without any control on the part of the nonprofit. A robust fundraising program provides needed financial security, expands your community, and grows awareness for your cause.How do you make sure your fundraising is successful? The best way to get started is to sit down and create a plan.The Number One Indicator of Fundraising SuccessAccording to the Individual Donor Benchmark Report, which studies nonprofits with operating budgets under $2 million, the number one indicator of success is having a written fundraising plan.Nonprofits with a fundraising plan—even if they don’t end up using it—are more likely to be successful. Why? The act of planning—going through last year’s numbers, analyzing results, assessing your financial health and looking for growth areas—gives you a healthy foundation to grow your programs. It keeps you focused, helps you think critically about new fundraising ideas, and ensures your activities support your mission.Want more planning resources? Check out 8 Resources to Help with Fundraising Planning.We know that fundraising planning is important. So, are nonprofits listening?Network for Good recently surveyed 10,000 small to mid-sized nonprofits to learn more about how they depend on fundraising plans, and the results were fascinating, to say the least.Q1: Do you currently have a written, 12-month fundraising plan from which you are managing revenue-generating activities to balance your budget?On the surface, it seems like many nonprofits are already using fundraising plans. But what about those ones who aren’t?Q2: If you don’t have a fundraising plan, what is the leading factor that is hindering your ability to create and implement one?A lack of time is the leading factor preventing nonprofit managers from developing a written fundraising plan, followed by a lack of insights and strategic know-how.Of course, it takes more than just a fundraising plan to ensure success—the plan is just the beginning. Successful fundraising is predicated upon multiple factors: a written plan, an effective strategy and case for support, staff and board consistently implementing tasks, and technology to track and build donor relationships.Unfortunately that’s often a tall order in a small shop. Often understaffed and underfunded, how does a small nonprofit afford the time and strategic help needed to develop a plan and sustain their mission?A New Model for SuccessNetwork for Good has initiated a new strategy to help smaller nonprofits move to more diversified and sustainable fundraising. We have coupled access to a personal fundraising coach with simple, easy-to-use fundraising software to ensure small nonprofits can continue their mission and sustain funding for programs commonly dropped due to lack of funding.In particular, the software and coaching combination was designed to help small and medium-sized nonprofits accomplish everything they need to thrive, including:Engage their boards in fundraising activities.Craft compelling stories to reach donors’ minds and hearts.Plan a successful year-end fundraising campaign.Analyze data to better understand their donors and inform their plan.Sounds great, right? The question is, does this model of software and coaching really work?The short answer is YES.Participating nonprofits raised, on average, 27% more revenue without a net increase to their expenses.What’s a Personal Fundraising Coach?So, you may be familiar with Network for Good’s software: donor management (designed just for small nonprofits) and fully integrated campaign pages. But what about the personal fundraising coach?Participating nonprofits are matched with a fundraising expert who has experience within their cause area and whose expertise matches their unique needs and challenges. Organizations get the help they need when they need it, without the risk of hiring a full time fundraising professional.These individuals provide one-on-one strategic support in everything ranging from creating a 12-month fundraising plan to developing a successful event to crafting an effective appeal. Whatever individual challenges a nonprofit is currently facing, the coach is there to provide strategic guidance.Looking ForwardIn recent years, many small nonprofits have struggled to find ways to create a model for survival, let alone growth. Diversified funding, affordable yet effective tools, and the help of a personal fundraising coach have helped hundreds of nonprofits in the last year to build a more certain and sustainable future.Click here to talk to us. We’ll give you an overview of the software, strategy, and coaching that can help your organization thrive.
VICTORIA – The mayor of Victoria is hailing a court victory allowing the city to enact a bylaw that will prohibit grocery stores from offering or selling plastic bags to shoppers.Lisa Helps says in a news release that the B.C. Supreme Court decision represents an important step in moving away from unsustainable business practices that create high volumes of waste from single-use plastic bags.The Canadian Plastic Bag Association challenged the bylaw, saying it amounts to an environmental regulation that the city does not have the power to enact without provincial approval.Justice Nathan Smith says the bylaw is characterized as a business regulation and even though some councillors may have been motivated by broad concerns for the environment, they were considering ways in which discarded plastic bags impact municipal facilities and services.The bylaw that goes into effect in July calls on businesses to charge customers 15 cents for a paper bag and $1 for a reusable bag, but small paper bags used for items such as bulk foods, meat, bakery goods and plants would still be free.Fees will increase in July 2019 to 25 cents for a paper bag and $2 for a reusable bag.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version said the fees increase in January 2019.
NEW YORK — The latest on developments in financial markets (all times local):9:35 a.m.Stocks are opening lower on Wall Street, led by losses in technology companies and banks.Apple lost 1.7 per cent early Tuesday and Bank of America was down 1.3 per cent.Dollar General sank 5.6 per cent after reporting weak results.The S&P 500 index lost 8 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 2,782.The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 65 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 25,761. The Nasdaq composite gave up 33 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 7,407.Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.95 per cent.The Associated Press
‘We are uncertain of the extensive damages as for more tests will be carried out. He has a very long road ahead of him as well as his family. His Dad Matt is by side and his Mom Ashley is back home caring for his 3 older brothers.’The GoFundMe account goes on to share the money is to help support the family in their time of need, and the long journey they have ahead.The account set up on March, 14th, 2019 is at $8,345 out of its $10,000 goalTo view the GoFundMe account; CLICK HERE FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Young, Matt Jr Beckerton had an incident with accidentally ingesting a chemical solution that has sent him to Children’s Hospital in serious condition.In speaking with Matt Beckerton, he shared “Our family is very happy with our community spirit, all their kind words and support means more than the world to us right now.”According to the GoFundMe account;
Fire officials say there were three pet cats in the residence at the time and all three were safely recovered, two by the occupant and one by the Fire Department.Fire damage was contained to the kitchen area with smoke damage throughout the residence.The Fire Department determined that the home did not have a working smoke alarm.Fire officials are reminding residents to practice safe cooking practices in the kitchen and to ensure that you have working smoke alarms in your home. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Fort St. John Fire Department responded to a small kitchen fire at the Peace Country Mobile Home Park on Tuesday at approximately 11:00 a.m.According to the Fire Department, a female occupant was cooking and fell asleep on the couch. She was awakened by the sound of the fire and was able to get out on her own.She was taken to the hospital by B.C. Ambulance to be checked out for smoke inhalation.
Seoul: Authorities in Seoul have cancelled the permit for a new Japanese embassy building citing construction delays, local officials said Wednesday, with relations between South Korea and Tokyo strained by historical disputes. The neighbours are both democracies, market economies and US allies faced with an increasingly assertive China and the long-running threat of nuclear-armed North Korea. But their own ties have remained icy for years due to bitter rows stemming from Japan’s brutal 1910-45 colonial rule of the Korean peninsula, with forced labour and wartime sex slavery key examples. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from USA statue of a “comfort woman” symbolising the Korean women forced to work in Japanese military brothels mostly during World War II stands across the road from the embassy plot. Since 1992 campaigners have held weekly rallies at the site to demand a “full, heartfelt apology” for wartime sex slavery from Tokyo. The 1,382th such gathering took place Wednesday, with activists surrounding the statue. The previous embassy building was demolished some years ago, with staff moving into offices in the neighbouring high-rises, and the plot is now a patch of bare earth behind a high wall, vines growing through the surrounding barbed wire. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential pollsCity authorities gave permission for a new six-storey building in 2015, the year Seoul and Tokyo signed a controversial deal to settle the wartime sex slavery issue. But construction — which under South Korean law must start within a year of a permit being received — was repeatedly delayed. Japan argues that the “comfort women” statue is against the 2015 bilateral agreement, under which Tokyo offered an apology and a one-billion yen payment. But South Korean President Moon Jae-in said last year that the deal had been signed by his ousted predecessor Park Geun-hye without consulting the Korean victims and disbanded a foundation set up with the Japanese funds. An official at the Jongno Ward Office in Seoul said: “We had a meeting with Japanese officials in February, and they said they will accept the revocation of the permit as they cannot start the construction work due to circumstances in their home country.”
Bengaluru: Sunrisers Hyderabad would look to complete the unfinished business and seal their place in the IPL Play-offs when they clash with laggards Royal Challengers Bangalore, here Saturday. The defeat against Mumbai Indians via Super Over must be hurting but they need to shrug it off and add two points to take their tally to 14, good enough to stay in top-4. Despite their defeat against Mumbai on Thursday night, Hyderabad’s net run rate is +0.653, which is superior to others in contention for the Play-offs. Also Read – We will push hard for Kabaddi”s inclusion in 2024 Olympics: Rijiju Even if Hyderabad lose their last match, they can still reach playoffs if Kolkata Knight Riders and Kings XI Punjab don’t win more than one of their last two matches. In the absence of their batting mainstay David Warner, young Manish Pandey (71 off 47 balls) shouldered the responsibility pretty well in the last match against Mumbai as he pushed the match into the super over after he carted Hardik Pandya for a last-ball six to bring scores level.
TBA4365+51.2 DET4044+10.0 It’s getting more and more crowded on baseball’s bleeding edge. As sabermetrics has expanded to swallow new disciplines and data sets,1The data generated by a single game has gone from mega- to gigabytes, with terabytes sure to follow before long. the number of quantitative analysts in MLB front offices has multiplied to keep up, producing an army of number crunchers, modelers and decision scientists who would have seemed out of place at the ballpark even a decade ago.Because we, too, are statheads at heart, we’ve mined the data and charted the proliferation of these numbers-savvy front-office staffers over time. Yes, there are more of them now than ever, and yes, they’ve had a demonstrable effect on their teams’ fortunes. But contrary to the “Moneyball”-era hand-wringing about battles between scouts and statheads, their rise hasn’t come at the expense of old-school analysis. Rather, the two main points of contention are how much the “Moneyball” mindset has spread from the game’s most frugal teams to the richest ones; and why the front-office hiring boom hasn’t helped its gender diversity.You’re gonna need a bigger budgetTo track the expansion of baseball’s R&D departments, we took three snapshots of MLB staffs by studying cached online directories and team media guides from 2016, 2012 and 2009 — the first year for which media guides are widely available from MLBpressbox.com — and consulting with current and former front-office employees. We limited our sample to full-time employees (sorry, interns and consultants),2Disclosure: One of this article’s authors, Rob Arthur, works as a statistical consultant for the Toronto Blue Jays. and tried to maintain a consistent, fairly strict definition of what constitutes a quant: a “baseball operations” employee who spends a majority of his or her work hours either directing a quantitative department or doing statistical research, data processing or programming to support the team’s analytical efforts.Naturally, our task occasionally required some informed speculation. “Analytics” and “analyst” are slippery terms, particularly because most front-office employees are multitaskers who contribute to more than one department. Many teams are also guarded in how they describe (or don’t describe) their employees’ roles and responsibilities. But even with all those caveats, we’re confident that we’ve arrived at a roughly accurate accounting of MLB’s quant army.And our numbers reveal that baseball’s analytical arms race is proceeding at a pace only slightly slower than Moore’s law. Although the analytical gold rush began before the period we examined, hiring has accelerated at an almost exponential rate over the last few years. In 2009, the first season of our sample — which was several years after “Moneyball” became a best-seller — a total of 44 team employees fit our “quant” definition, and at least a third of teams had yet to assign a single full-time employee primarily to statistical work. By 2012, the number had climbed to 75, and only four teams had no quants. Four years after that, the analyst count has more than doubled again, to 156, and nowadays no team operates without some semblance of an R&D department. 3Only one of those departments — perhaps predictably, the tightfisted Miami Marlins — is still a solo act. MIL3848+26.3 ATL3246+43.8 KCA3647+30.6 SDN3655+52.8 TOR3858+52.6 WAS2847+67.9% ARI4161+48.8 CIN4665+41.3 TEX3849+28.9 NUMBER OF FULL-TIME SCOUTING PERSONNEL MIN3546+31.4 LAD4361+41.9 OAK3840+5.3 CLE4148+17.1 SourceS: MLB, VARIOUS TEAM MEDIA GUIDES SEA6762-7.5 Nor is there any indication that we’re approaching a plateau. A number of teams told us they expected to add more analysts soon; we’re aware of at least 12 open positions across MLB. And because the litany of prerequisite degrees and programming languages seems to grow with each listing, it seems certain that the average analyst also has a more impressive résumé today than in the past.To the statheads went the spoilsThe biggest benefits of buying into objective analysis were probably reaped around the time “Moneyball” was published, when a lot of the low-hanging fruit was still attached to baseball’s most rigid branches. Simple lessons such as “on-base percentage matters more than batting average” still eluded many front offices, and numerous talented analysts whose work would later be exclusive to one team were still posting their insights publicly on message boards or sites such as Baseball Prospectus.Even though some of the initial rewards had already been realized by 2009, there were still significant gains to be made by semi-early adopters. To measure them, we built a model estimating how good a team was before its front-office hires, using the following factors for each team: its winning percentages over the previous three seasons, its payroll and market size and its Baseball America farm-system ranking. Using these variables, we generated an expected winning percentage for each team over the following three seasons, beginning with the two historical years for which we had analyst counts (2009 and 2012).The takeaway: It paid to invest in analytics early. Teams with at least one analyst in 2009 outperformed their expected winning percentage4As predicted by the model. by 44 percentage points over the 2012-14 period, relative to teams who didn’t — an enormous effect, equivalent to more than seven extra wins per season. That might be overstating things a bit — the precise advantage varies depending on how the analysis is structured — but over most permutations of the model we tried,5Including using different thresholds (by number of analysts) to determine a team’s analytical buy-in, and different periods of time upon which to judge a team’s on-field output. the effect was consistently stronger than two wins per season, particularly for the earliest-adopting teams, which got a head start by implementing analytics before 2009.Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that sabermetrics conferred such a first-mover advantage. As a thought experiment, let’s assume the typical modern analytics department contains five people (156 staffers leaguewide, divided by 30 teams). If the two most senior members of the department earn $100,000 a year and the remaining members make half that, the yearly price would come to $350,000. Putting aside overhead costs,6Which, admittedly, can be quite large (i.e., in the millions) for some front offices. But even with multi-million dollar overhead costs, the total price of an analytics department wouldn’t approach most free-agent player contracts of similar value. that outlay still lags behind the MLB’s minimum salary for a single player — chump change in a sport where the average franchise is valued at 10 figures.For such a relatively small expenditure on analysts, even the minimum estimate of two extra wins per year would represent a return roughly 30 times as efficient as spending the same amount on the free-agent market. (It would be like the Chicago Cubs signing outfielder Dexter Fowler not for the $13 million he’s actually making but for what it would take to pay a player who just made his big-league debut.) At that rate, there’s plenty of room for front-office inflation to continue before teams run into diminishing returns.The rich are getting smarterAlthough the big-budget Boston Red Sox were also one of the first teams to demonstrate that an analytics department could help win a World Series,7Boston may have even been the first to win with a dedicated analytics staff, though it’s also worth noting that the Oakland A’s won in 1989 with early sabermetric consulting from Eric Walker. a number of low-payroll, small-market teams — including not only the Moneyball A’s, but also the Rays, Indians, Padres and Pirates — were among the first to form quantitative departments and develop systems to house and display statistical data. It made sense: The more pressing a team’s financial imperative to stretch every dollar and wring out every win, the more likely it was to try a new approach.But that’s no longer true. Although the Rays, who rank 29th in payroll this season, continue to occupy the R&D pole position with a still expanding department of almost 20 statheads — fortunately, Tropicana Field has plenty of quiet, climate-controlled workspace to spare — baseball’s “haves” are no longer have-nots when it comes to statistical expertise. In both 2009 and 2012, teams with low-ranking payrolls tended to employ more analysts. But in 2016, the balance of analytical buy-in shifts toward big spenders, which might explain why the Rays are having a harder time separating their on-field performance from the pack.Not only are wealthy teams capable of outspending competitors for free-agent players, but they’ve also become more willing to outbid them for brains. The sport’s two heaviest hitters by payroll, the Yankees and Dodgers, are also the only teams aside from the Rays whose R&D departments have double-digit head counts.In addition to hiring a large crew of new number crunchers and programmers, the Dodgers have plundered talent from other franchises’ front offices, absorbing not only the former general managers of the Rays (Andrew Friedman), Padres (Josh Byrnes) and Blue Jays (Alex Anthopoulos), but also a former A’s assistant GM, Farhan Zaidi, who joined Oakland as an analyst because “Moneyball” made him want to work in baseball. In particular, LA’s brain trust has devoted its efforts to preserving player health, which Billy Beane has publicly labeled the sport’s most glaring inefficiency. In their quest to curtail injuries, the Dodgers have invested in both computerized systems and human know-how, as well as seeding a sports-oriented startup incubation program.Stats haven’t killed the scouting starIn the factious days after “Moneyball” was published, the book was often characterized as a prophecy of scouting’s coming extinction. That interpretation was mostly off base, but one passage did strongly imply that the competition for front-office positions was a zero-sum game. In a postscript titled “Inside Baseball’s Religious War,” which appeared in later editions, Michael Lewis wrote that “[J.P.] Ricciardi, the new [Blue Jays] GM, had done what every enlightened GM will eventually do: fire a lot of scouts, hire someone comfortable with statistical analysis … and begin to trade for value, ruthlessly.”Lewis’s postscript looks ironic in retrospect, for multiple reasons. The deputy he describes as “someone comfortable with statistical analysis” was Keith Law, who has since become ESPN’s lead prospect analyst and spends much of his time scouting players. Moreover, Ricciardi himself was fired in 2009 and replaced by Anthopoulos, who almost immediately embarked on a scout-hiring spree — and shepherded Toronto to more success than it had ever enjoyed under his predecessor.8Anthopoulos left the Blue Jays for the Dodgers after the 2015 season. Even Beane’s stat-inclined sidekick, Paul DePodesta, later became vice president of player development and scouting for the Mets before switching sports earlier this year. BAL3432-5.9 STL3944+12.8 CHC5160+17.6 NYM5246-11.5 PHI33330.0 CHW3246+43.8 TEAM20092016%CHANGE BOS5971+20.3 NYY4574+64.4 HOU5552-5.5 SFN5956-5.1 COL3644+22.2 ANA3448+41.2 PIT3948+23.1 MIA3843+13.2 Scouting staffs are also on the rise In fact, the recent expansion of analytics staffing doesn’t seem to have squeezed out other kinds of employees. By our count, big-league teams employed 1,246 full-time scouts in the first year of our sample,9Which in most cases dates back to 2009, except for the few teams whose 2009 media guides don’t have accessible scouting sections. In those cases, we used 2010 data. across all levels and specialties — pro, amateur, advance and international. This year’s media guides list 1,539 scouts — an average increase of almost 10 per team. Only five teams employ fewer scouts than they did in 2009, and of those, four were previously among the top five scout employers. No team has downsized by more than six total scouts or 12 percent of its previous force.Although the increased ability to access information remotely may have made some advance and pro scouts redundant — or transferred their responsibilities to new, stay-at-home scouts who prep for opponents using a combination of stats and video — any modest downsizing in those areas has been more than offset by increased amateur and international coverage. For instance, the Rays — who also devote a massive head count to scouting, trailing only the Yankees and Red Sox — assign dedicated scouts to 12 countries outside the U.S., some of which haven’t historically been baseball hotbeds.10Including Curacao, Germany, the Czech Republic and Brazil, where they’re trying to build an academy. No scouting position is permanent, but our survey uncovered scant evidence to back up claims that teams are treating scouts as obsolete relics. If anything, smart teams have learned to treat scouting grades as statistical data that can improve upon purely numbers-based evaluations, making the two perspectives even more tightly intertwined.Given baseball’s burgeoning economy, it’s only logical that additional jobs for statheads haven’t come at scouts’ expense. Ever-rising broadcast rights and franchise valuations have caused revenue to skyrocket, and the profit has to go somewhere besides under owners’ mattresses. As revenue sharing, luxury taxes, and limits on amateur and international spending lower the ceiling on some forms of spending and shrink the payroll gaps between teams, the best option for a cash-flush club is to direct dollars away from the field. Beefing up front-office infrastructure makes acquiring, storing and applying information easier, and it allows teams to get more bang for the bucks they’re allowed to spend.That said, there are still places where analytics hiring has a lot of room to improve. Out of 190 analysts who appeared on our list at least once, only five were female, and only three of those women are still active. Granted, the gender imbalance in baseball ops is actually less lopsided on the R&D side than in scouting, where women are even scarcer. But high-level playing experience is far from a prerequisite in R&D roles, which tells us either that teams are having trouble attracting female applicants or that they’re overlooking the qualified candidates who do apply. As Zaidi, who has since hired one of the three active female analysts, put it last year: “If I’m going to put my geek cap on, it’s a statistical impossibility … that the best candidate for every position in baseball is a middle-aged Caucasian male.”Of course, baseball’s broadcast bubble might eventually burst, reversing the rise in revenue and forcing teams to economize. In that event, some would likely decide that stats, video and tracking systems such as Statcast and Kinetrax make scouting positions expendable, although they would probably also slash the budgets and support for their R&D staffs. Barring that type of catastrophe, though, baseball’s front-office hiring boom is unlikely to slow any time soon, since the rapid ascendance of baseball’s new school hasn’t made many teams think “out with the old.” Instead, teams have learned to synthesize information from multiple sources; even the supposedly sabermetrics-defying Kansas City Royals were aided by a talented analytics department en route to their World Series victory last season. When it comes to the search for front-office smarts, all signs still say “help wanted.”Check out our latest MLB predictions.
Ohio State redshirt senior quarterback J.T. Barrett (16) throws a pass in the second quarter of the 2017 Ohio State- UNLV game on Sep. 23. Ohio State won 54- 21. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorLost among the quarterback controversy at Ohio State has been the extended success of quarterback J.T. Barrett. The fifth-year senior has posted up statistics that rank him among the program’s greatest in history. Here is a look at records he has broken and records he still has yet to set.22 – Ohio State records Barrett currently holds. As he prepares for the fifth game in his final season under center for Ohio State, Barrett holds 22 school records for either single-game, season or career statistics, with a chance to add some more to his resume before the end of the season. Touchdown passes? Barrett with 79 (second is Bobby Hoying with 57). Two-hundred-yard passing games? Barrett with 21, five more than Hoying. Average total offense per game? Barrett at 285 yards (Terrelle Pryor is second at 185.2). And just two weeks ago against Army, Barrett surpassed future NFL Hall-of-Famer and former Purdue quarterback Drew Brees for career touchdowns responsible for among Big Ten quarterbacks with his 107th touchdown. He has since moved to 30th on the all-time list with 112 touchdowns, and trails only Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield (117) among active quarterbacks.Ohio State redshirt senior quarterback J.T. Barrett (16) runs the ball in the first quarter of the 2017 OSU- Army game on Sep. 16. OSU won 38-7. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo Editor22 (again) – passing touchdowns until Barrett holds the Big Ten record. Brees’ record for most career passing touchdowns could be within Barrett’s reach this season. In his four seasons at Purdue, Brees completed 90 touchdown passes. With just 22 fewer than Brees, Barrett could set the record if he averages even just three touchdown passes per game over the remaining eight games in the schedule, plus any more he throws during postseason bowl games.Barrett already leads Ohio State quarterbacks by miles in this area, having thrown 79 over his career, 22 more than Pryor.201 – passing yards left until Barrett owns the program record. Heading into Saturday’s game against Rutgers, Barrett sits just 201 passing yards away from surpassing Art Schlichter for the most career passing yards at 7,547. He is also just three rushing touchdowns shy of passing Schlichter for the most by an Ohio State quarterback, with the record currently set at 35.In terms of the Big Ten quarterback records for passing yards, Barrett still has a ways to go and is unlikely to break that record. With 7,347 career passing yards, Barrett would need 4,445 this season to surpass Drew Brees’ record. The Buckeyes’ three-time captain has yet to post a season with more than 3,000 passing yards.588* – rushing yards left until Barrett holds the record for most rush yards by an Ohio State quarterback. As a dual-threat quarterback, Barrett has provided the Buckeyes with offense not just with his arm, but also with his legs. Over his career, Barrett has piled up 2,639 rushing yards on 534 total attempts. The only quarterback still ahead of Barrett in terms of rushing yards is Braxton Miller, who totalled 3,053 rushing yards in his time spent as a quarterback.The asterisk by this statistic is just to indicate that Miller rushed for 261 yards his final season in Columbus as an H-back and were not accounted into his total of 3053.Ohio State redshirt senior J.T. Barrett (16) runs the ball in the second quarter of the 2017 Ohio State- UNLV game on Sep. 23. Ohio State won 54- 21. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo Editor1.3 – passing efficiency shy of setting Ohio State and Big Ten record. Rate statistics and other non-counting numbers are much more challenging to predict than counting stats. Barrett currently owns a career passing efficiency of 149.8, trailing both the Big Ten and Ohio State record holder Joe Germaine, who sits at 151.0 (minimum of 700 attempts).Over his career, Barrett has only once posted a passer rating of more than 151, and it came in his first season of play. So far this season, he has a rating of 156.8 and has exceeded that 151 mark in all but one of the four games he’s played in so far. It has been an incredibly high passing efficiency mark this season and maintaining this rate could be challenging. But if the three-time captain is able to maintain this rate all season long, he should be able to exceed Germaine.3 – 300-yard passing games shy of setting the Ohio State record. Following up on another record held by Germaine, Barrett has a total of six games in which he has passed for more than 300 yards. Four of Barrett’s 300-plus passing yard games came in his redshirt freshman season. The only other two 300-yard games have come in the season opener last season against Bowling Green and then again in the opener this season against Indiana.For a team that has relied heavily on its running game over the past several seasons, Ohio State might not give Barrett the chance to reach that milestone. Though Barrett has half of his 300-plus yard games against conference opponents, two of those three came in his redshirt freshman season when he was far more invested in the passing game. Three more games is hardly a lofty total to reach, but recent history suggests it could be a challenge for Barrett to set the record.
Ohio State’s Myles Martin wrestles Mitch Bowman in the dual-meet against Iowa on Jan. 21 in the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Managing Editor for DesignIn the first match following the losses of some of the greatest wrestlers to ever come through the program, Kyle Snyder, Nathan Tomasello and Bo Jordan, Ohio State opened the season with a dominant victory over Navy on Saturday. Senior Myles Martin said at media day earlier this week he’s never felt better headed into a season before, and he is looking forward to “literally every single match.” The 184-pounder looked like he meant every word when it was his turn to take the mats, as he was able to get 10 different takedowns and get a technical fall midway through the second period, winning 21-6.Ohio State 157-pound redshirt junior Ke-Shawn Hayes, got things started with a 3-1 come-from-behind victory over Navy’s Connor Prince. Heading into the third period, Hayes elected to start from the bottom position and, in doing so, was able to get a quick escape. He was then able to trip Prince, before getting a takedown and winning the match. Redshirt freshman Kaleb Romero made his Buckeye debut and, like his teammate Hayes, was able to make magic happen in the third. Romero was able to shoot for a double-leg takedown with just eight seconds left to win 3-2 .Senior Te’Shan Campbell used his signature tilt two different times in his match, notching six points, hanging on to a smaller 8-5 lead for a decisive victory. Redshirt sophomore Kevin Snyder was the first Buckeye unable to pull off the victory on Saturday. After a 1-0 start for Navy’s Joshua Roetman, who did a great job of defending Snyder’s takedowns, he was able to catch Snyder in a cradle to cap off the fall at 3:39 for the win.Navy got its second victory of the night in the 125-pound weight class when Jacob Allen defeated Ohio State sophomore Brakan Mead in a decision victory, 5-4. This drew Navy closer, with the total score now 17-9. Ohio State 133-pound junior Luke Pletcher of the Buckeyes started to build off his 2017-18 campaign, grinding out a 7-4 decision to bring Ohio State up 20-9. Ohio State senior and captain Joey McKenna was able to battle hard for a low-scoring 3-2 victory over Navy’s Nicholas Gil. McKenna rode him out for the entirety of the third and final period to achieve a riding point, and receive a 3-2 nod. Ohio State increased their total lead to 23-9 with one match remaining. To wrap the dual up, it was the No. 2 wrestler in the country at 149 pounds, Micah Jordan, battling No. 19, Navy’s Jared Prince. This bout was entirely one-sided, as Jordan came up with a 16-1 tech fall for the victory. Ohio State’s next match will be on Nov. 11 in the Ohio Intercollegiate Open in Cleveland, Ohio.
The Argentinean superstar has always been criticized for his work in the national team since is not the same as the work he does for Barcelona.Football superstar Lionel Messi has always been criticized for his work in the Argentina national team since it’s not the same as the job he does for Spanish La Liga giants Barcelona.And now teammate and former Argentina captain Javier Mascherano has spoken on why he pities those who criticize the Blaugrana footballer.“When Messi is not [with the national team] it’s a problem and when he returns, it is as well,” Mascherano was quoted by Spanish media outlet Marca.“He always behaved as a leader and you can go and ask the people who work at the Argentine FA (AFA) if we did things for the national team or not.”“Messi has endured everything for ten years and the criticism of him is not about his football,” he added.Top 5 players who can actually replace Messi and Ronaldo Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 13, 2019 After Pep Guardiola’s latest defense of Messi and Ronaldo, we need to start talking about the Top 5 players who can replace them.Replacing Messi and…“The criticism comes from the yellow press, as we live in a country where it seems that if you don’t win something, you do not love the national team.”“I see the team doing really well, very strong,” former Messi teammate Sergi Samper added.“I always say that Messi is on another level.”“For me, he is the best player in history,” he concluded.Messi is back to the Argentina national team, after missing the second part of 2018 as he decided not to defend his country’s colours after the 2018 FIFA World Cup fiasco in Russia.He played for Argentina for the first time since the summer of 2018 in the 3-1 defeat against Venezuela, but he was injured for the match against Morocco some days later.