Connect with us


Cody Gakpo on course for Euro 2024 Golden Boot



The 2024 European Championships in Germany has been a spectacular footballing event, with the biggest and best teams from across the continent doing battle in some spectacular contests.

Whilst the likes of holders Italy and highly fancied Belgium have already been eliminated and pre-tournament favourites England and France requiring plenty of luck to sneak through to the quarter finals, it has been a tournament packed with drama.

With the tournament having reached the quarter final stage, there are plenty of sides in the hunt for Euro 2024 glory with many football betting sites and there are plenty of options out there for punters and bookmakers alike, with some superb sports betting bonus offers on the market for Euro 2024 currently.

Another side that have been through the mill at the tournament is the Netherlands, a team that were seen as one of the dark horses in the competition from the outset and despite some tetchy moments, they have progressed to the last 8.

An opening last gasp win over Poland was backed up by a turgid draw with France and a pain-staking loss to Austria, results that left the Dutch finishing 3rd in Group D and with plenty of work to do if they are to go all the way at Euro 2024.

Next up was a potentially tricky tie against Romania, a game that the Dutch comfortably prevailed from and the goal threat of Liverpool forward Cody Gakpo, a man who always steps up for his country and who finds himself in the conversation for the Euro 2024 Golden Boot.

Glorious Gakpo

The impact Cody Gakpo has had on this Dutch side at Euro 2024 has been huge, with plenty of reds fans hugely enthralled by the performances he has been putting in for Holland at this tournament.

Playing on the left and cutting in on his right foot is a new role for Gakpo under Ronald Koeman for the Dutch national team but it maybe something incoming Liverpool manager Arne Slot looks to employ, as he seeks to get the best out of a player that has yet to develop a sense of consistency at Anfield.

Cody Gakpo has been the talisman for the Netherlands so far at Euro 2024, scoring the opening goal against Poland, before backing that up with further goals against Austria in the group stages and against Romania in the last 16.

3 goals in 4 games has propelled him firmly into Golden Boot contention and how Liverpool would love to have a fully fit and confident Gakpo this summer, before he returns to Anfield for a big season ahead in 2024/25.

Dutch Dream

The Netherlands last won a major tournament back in 1988 and their long wait for silverware is only three games away at Euro 2024.

Next up for Koeman, Gakpo and co. is a tricky looking tie against Turkiye, one of the best supported sides in the tournament and if they win that, the likes of England or Switzerland will be waiting for them in the semi-finals.

Despite the collective opinion that the Netherlands haven’t hit anywhere near top gear in Euro 2024, they have progressed through to the quarter finals relatively seamlessly and they will believe that if their performances improve, they could have the tools to go all the way and end their 36 year wait for a major tournament victory.

Golden Boot glory

With each of the sides left in the competition all having played 4 games each, the goal tallies across the competition from some players have been hugely impressive. 

Cody Gakpo is joined at the top of the tree by German wonderkid Jamal Musiala, a player that has set the tournament alight thus far and who will be looking to propel his home nation to glory here at Euro 2024.

Elsewhere, big names such as Harry Kane, Jude Bellingham and Kai Havertz have all netted twice in the tournament and with their presence in the Golden Boot race noted, it could be an epic battle for individual honours here in Germany.

If the Netherlands are to go all the way however, it would be a huge achievement for Cody Gakpo and his Liverpool team mates Virgil van Dijk and Ryan Gravenberch, who will be buoyed when they return to club life ahead of next season.


England’s Euro 2024 semi-final victory captivates millions



ENGLAND’S Euro 2024 semi-final victory over the Netherlands garnered a peak audience of 20.3 million on ITV, cementing its status as the most-watched television programme of the year. Broadcasters are now hopeful that Sunday night’s final against Spain will attract over 30 million viewers, surpassing the numbers that tuned in for England’s Euro 2020 final defeat.

The overnight viewing figures, provided by ratings agency Digital-i, do not account for the millions who streamed the match on ITVX or watched in public venues. The coverage of Euro 2024 in the UK is split between the BBC and ITV, with the channels alternating first choices for matches in each round. ITV executives celebrated Jordan Pickford’s crucial penalty save against Switzerland, which secured another high-profile England match and delivered a substantial advertising boost to the channel.

Both the BBC and ITV will broadcast the final, with approximately a fifth of viewers typically opting for ITV over the BBC. Euro 2024 has demonstrated the enduring appeal of live sports broadcasting, which continues to draw massive audiences, particularly when the events are free to watch. Even matches not involving home nations have attracted significant viewership, with the Spain v France semi-final on BBC One peaking at 11 million viewers.

The Euros are part of the UK’s “crown jewel” sporting events, which include the football World Cup, Wimbledon, and the Olympics, all mandated by law to be shown on free-to-air channels. In contrast, other sports have opted for the higher revenue available from pay TV channels, resulting in substantially lower audiences for international matches. The England and Wales cricket board successfully lobbied in the 2000s to keep England test matches off the free-to-air list. Consequently, Jimmy Anderson’s farewell match against the West Indies at Lords, broadcast behind a paywall on Sky, attracted a peak audience of only about 700,000 viewers.

Continue Reading


Welsh Snooker star Michael White jailed for assaulting partner



A WELSH snooker star has been jailed after assaulting his then-partner. Michael White, 33, of Penshannel, Neath Abbey, assaulted the woman, causing actual bodily harm, on two separate occasions. The first incident occurred on February 12, 2022, and the second on December 10, 2022.

White pleaded guilty to the charges. A further charge of intentional strangulation on December 10 was directed to lie on file. White, whose snooker world ranking peaked at 15 in 2016, was sentenced at Swansea Crown Court on Thursday, July 11, 2024.

He received a total jail term of 36 months – 19 months for the first incident and a consecutive 17 months for the second. The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association has announced that White has been removed from the world ranking list and the World Snooker Tour with immediate effect.

Continue Reading


Culture secretary vows push to keep free-to-air Six Nations games



WALES’ culture secretary vowed to make the case for keeping Wales’ Six Nations games on free-to-air TV to her Labour colleagues in the new UK Government.

Lesley Griffiths told the Senedd she will be seeking a meeting with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) to discuss the issue.

Ms Griffiths said: “Making the Six Nations free-to-air ensures that everyone, regardless of their financial situation, can feel part of this shared experience.

“This inclusivity strengthens community bonds and fosters a sense of belonging.”

Responding to a debate on a Senedd culture committee report on broadcasting rights, the culture secretary said she would write to the UK Government by the end of this week.

Delyth Jewell chairs the culture committee, which held an inquiry on whether Wales’ matches should be added to Ofcom’s list of events that must be shown on terrestrial TV.

The Plaid Cymru politician said: “A perfect storm of market dynamics in broadcasting live sport has seen more and more events go behind a paywall.

“Public service broadcasters are facing significant budgetary constraints, be this from long-term cuts to the licence fee, or a downturn in the advertising market on broadcast television. Increasing production costs are compounding both these factors.

“The advent of global streaming services also means that the value of sports broadcasting rights has increased.”

The Welsh Rugby Union told the inquiry that moving matches to the protected list could have a devastating medium- and long-term impact on the whole game in Wales.

Media rights account for £20m of the WRU’s £90m total revenue, with the union calling for open competition to maximise income for the game.

Carolyn Thomas, the Labour MS for North Wales, recognised this tension but warned: “There is a real risk here that avoiding action will leave us dropping the ball. We must ensure future generations can connect with the game without having to shell out for the privilege.”

She added: “Let’s hope, with the new UK Labour Government, we will be in a safe pair of hands and we get protected, free-to-air Six Nations coverage over the line.”

Heledd Fychan called for matches to be broadcast on S4C, rather than having a Welsh viewing option on platforms such as Amazon Prime.

The Plaid Cymru MS, who represents South Wales Central, pointed out that Rhondda MP Chris Bryant has been appointed a junior DCMS minister as she urged Labour to act.

Samuel Kurtz raised concerns about the 8% interest rate the WRU is paying on an £18m coronavirus business interruption loan scheme from the Welsh Government.

Pointing out that the rate was fixed at 2% for English premiership sides, the Tory MS said: “I think that’s a financial constraint that’s hurting our professional clubs here in Wales.”

Caerphilly MS Hefin David joked that he has a lot in common with former PM Rishi Sunak – “as my dad wouldn’t let us have Sky either, and we had to listen to it on the radio”.

He called for a ‘Plan B’ for the hospitality industry if rugby goes behind a paywall, including a contractual clause to give small pubs and clubs a reduced pay-to-view subscription.

Dr David said he watches Wales matches at Gilfach workmen’s club, which pays £514 a month for Sky, as he raised concerns about venues having to buy multiple subscriptions..

“Well, Gilfach workies simply can’t afford that,” he said.

Alun Davies, a fellow Labour backbencher, said: “We need to address the real crisis in Welsh rugby and that is ensuring that the game exists for future generations, and I believe that exposure to the Six Nations championship is fundamental to that.”

The Blaenau Gwent MS raised the example of Glamorgan cricket.

He said: “It does raise fears within me that the more we take the game away from the screens, the more we take it away from our communities and from the people who enjoy watching the game, and the less it becomes our national sport.”

The culture committee’s inquiry was sparked after John Whittingdale, a Conservative former culture minister, left the door open last autumn while giving evidence.

Sir John told the meeting: “We’ve always said that if the Welsh Parliament argued very strongly that, for the good of sport in Wales, we needed to look again at the listed events, we would look at it, certainly. So, it’s not closed.’

Continue Reading

Community4 hours ago

Sumatran tiger cub named Zaza is first ever born in a Welsh zoo

MANOR WILDLIFE PARK said this week that it is thrilled to announce the birth of a Sumatran tiger cub, named...

Community4 hours ago

Neyland Carnival 2024: A resounding success

THIS year’s carnival dazzled spectators and participants alike today, marking one of the most memorable events in recent years. Thousands...

News1 day ago

Swimmers warned off west Wales beaches following pollution incident

SWIMMERS have been advised to avoid two popular beaches in west Wales following a pollution incident. On Friday (Jul 12)...

Politics2 days ago

King Charles III addresses Senedd to mark 25th anniversary of Welsh devolution

KING CHARLES III addressed the Welsh Parliament on a visit to celebrate 25 years since the then-National Assembly for Wales...

News3 days ago

Several injured in Oakwood Theme Park ride incident

A ROUTINE day at Oakwood Theme Park took a horrifying turn yesterday when the park’s ‘Bounce’ ride malfunctioned, resulting in...

Politics4 days ago

Tufnell promises to make sure Pembrokeshire is at the heart of government policy

MID AND SOUTH Pembrokeshire’s new Labour MP has travelled to London for his first day representing the constituency after his...

Crime5 days ago

Milford man admits 23 sexual offences against children

A MILFORD HAVEN man has appeared before a District Judge accused of committing 23 sexual offences against four girls under...

News6 days ago

Cabinet recommended to approve Pembrokeshire hosting Eisteddfod 2026

PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL Cabinet Members are being recommended to approve an offer to host the National Eisteddfod in 2026. As...

Community6 days ago

Milford Haven Carnival 2024: Round Table praised for ‘best parade in years’

MILFORD HAVEN was a hub of excitement and celebration on Saturday, July 6, as the annual carnival returned to the...

News1 week ago

The National Eisteddfod 2026 could be held in Pembrokeshire

THE National Eisteddfod 2026 could be held on the outskirts of Cardigan, just inside Pembrokeshire if Pembrokeshire County Council formalise...

Popular This Week