Sanchez buoyant at Arsenal, Vidal battling at Bayern ahead of Chilean-flavoured clash



They packed the stands, the scouts and talent-spotters, for Chile’s opening game at the Under 17 World Cup at the weekend. Spies with mandates from the biggest clubs in Europe, looking for the next big star from the narrow, thin nation that runs along the west coast of lower South America.

The logic is sound. Chile are the continent's champions at senior level; Chileans should be at the heart of club football's most enticing tie in Tuesday night's Uefa Champions League programme.

Back in early July, Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez and Bayern Munich's Arturo Vidal enjoyed their finest hour as colleagues, as compatriots. Make that their finest 20 minutes.

The final of the Copa America, which Chile had reached, went to penalties, after 0-0 over two hours of open play against Argentina. Vidal takes penalties expertly, has had years of practice, notably with Juventus. He converted the second of Chile’s spot kicks, for a 2-1 lead, Lionel Messi having scored for Argentina.

Poll: What will be the result of Arsenal v Bayern Munich at Emirates Stadium?

Sanchez, whose finishing, whose shooting power has made him the leading scorer so far this season for Arsenal, was designated to take the fourth penalty for Chile that night.

Argentina had fluffed two spot kicks by then, so Sanchez had the honour of striking the winning goal, in front of a partisan Santiago crowd, and making himself the image of his country’s excellence in its most popular sport, of a nation who had bettered the heavyweights, Brazil and Argentina.

Sanchez and Vidal share certain qualities: Ruggedness, energy, aggression. But they are different sorts of footballer.

Sanchez is the winger-turned-all-round-striker, who likes wearing the No 9, but would balk at being asked to simply act as a goal-hanger.

Vidal is the hammer-and-tongs midfielder who would raise a puzzled eyebrow if you classified him only as an anchorman. Yes, his relish for the saving tackle, the regaining of possession, is evident, but he was also Juventus’s top goalscorer in 2012/13, a title-winning season for the club. Being an ace penalty-taker accounted for some, but not all of those goals.

Vidal, 28, moved from Juve to Bayern in July. Arsenal had been among several clubs interested in recruiting him, having weighed up the benefits of his all-round game against the risk that his patchy record of fitness represented.

In Munich, he has points still to prove. Franz Beckenbauer, Bayern’s honorary president, last month criticised Vidal’s work-rate and claimed “the club don’t need him”.

Other than lifting the Copa America — he was man of the match in the final — Vidal had a testing summer. His performance in the Champions League final, his last match for Juventus, had been mixed, his pugnacity in the early phases of the 3-1 defeat to Barcelona excessive and in danger of earning a red card.

He missed some of Bayern’s pre-season, and was charged with drink-driving in Chile during the Copa.

That cost him some respect from compatriots. Sanchez, though a little frosty with the media, has in the past two years overtaken Vidal as the country’s most admired sporting figurehead. His move to Barcelona from Italy’s Udinese, in 2011, helped raise his profile and his impact at Arsenal, who are seeking their first points of a shaky European campaign against Bayern, has been immense.

“Delightful,” Arsene Wenger called him at the weekend, when Sanchez, 26, scored the third goal in the 3-0 Premier League win against Watford. “He’s what you want to watch if you like football.”

And he is one red-hot Chilean right now. Sanchez has 10 goals in his last six matches, including the three he scored for his country during the recent international break. Bayern know which Arsenal man they have to police most vigilantly. Expect Vidal to spend some time hounding his countryman.

FOLLOW US ON TWITTER @NatSportUAE

COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: OneOrder
Started: March 2022
Founders: Tamer Amer and Karim Maurice
Based: Cairo
Number of staff: 82
Investment stage: Series A

The years Ramadan fell in May

1987

1954

1921

1888

Mercer, the investment consulting arm of US services company Marsh & McLennan, expects its wealth division to at least double its assets under management (AUM) in the Middle East as wealth in the region continues to grow despite economic headwinds, a company official said.

Mercer Wealth, which globally has $160 billion in AUM, plans to boost its AUM in the region to $2-$3bn in the next 2-3 years from the present $1bn, said Yasir AbuShaban, a Dubai-based principal with Mercer Wealth.

Within the next two to three years, we are looking at reaching $2 to $3 billion as a conservative estimate and we do see an opportunity to do so,” said Mr AbuShaban.

Mercer does not directly make investments, but allocates clients’ money they have discretion to, to professional asset managers. They also provide advice to clients.

“We have buying power. We can negotiate on their (client’s) behalf with asset managers to provide them lower fees than they otherwise would have to get on their own,” he added.

Mercer Wealth’s clients include sovereign wealth funds, family offices, and insurance companies among others.

From its office in Dubai, Mercer also looks after Africa, India and Turkey, where they also see opportunity for growth.

Wealth creation in Middle East and Africa (MEA) grew 8.5 per cent to $8.1 trillion last year from $7.5tn in 2015, higher than last year’s global average of 6 per cent and the second-highest growth in a region after Asia-Pacific which grew 9.9 per cent, according to consultancy Boston Consulting Group (BCG). In the region, where wealth grew just 1.9 per cent in 2015 compared with 2014, a pickup in oil prices has helped in wealth generation.

BCG is forecasting MEA wealth will rise to $12tn by 2021, growing at an annual average of 8 per cent.

Drivers of wealth generation in the region will be split evenly between new wealth creation and growth of performance of existing assets, according to BCG.

Another general trend in the region is clients’ looking for a comprehensive approach to investing, according to Mr AbuShaban.

“Institutional investors or some of the families are seeing a slowdown in the available capital they have to invest and in that sense they are looking at optimizing the way they manage their portfolios and making sure they are not investing haphazardly and different parts of their investment are working together,” said Mr AbuShaban.

Some clients also have a higher appetite for risk, given the low interest-rate environment that does not provide enough yield for some institutional investors. These clients are keen to invest in illiquid assets, such as private equity and infrastructure.

“What we have seen is a desire for higher returns in what has been a low-return environment specifically in various fixed income or bonds,” he said.

“In this environment, we have seen a de facto increase in the risk that clients are taking in things like illiquid investments, private equity investments, infrastructure and private debt, those kind of investments were higher illiquidity results in incrementally higher returns.”

The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, one of the largest sovereign wealth funds, said in its 2016 report that has gradually increased its exposure in direct private equity and private credit transactions, mainly in Asian markets and especially in China and India. The authority’s private equity department focused on structured equities owing to “their defensive characteristics.”

Bawaal

Director: Nitesh Tiwari

Stars: Varun Dhawan, Janhvi Kapoor

Rating: 1/5

COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: Nomad Homes
Started: 2020
Founders: Helen Chen, Damien Drap, and Dan Piehler
Based: UAE and Europe
Industry: PropTech
Funds raised so far: $44m
Investors: Acrew Capital, 01 Advisors, HighSage Ventures, Abstract Ventures, Partech, Precursor Ventures, Potluck Ventures, Knollwood and several undisclosed hedge funds

THE SPECS

Engine: 2.4-litre four-cylinder
Power: 210hp
Torque: 320Nm
Price: Starting from Dh89,900
On sale: Now

Sweet Tooth

Creator: Jim Mickle
Starring: Christian Convery, Nonso Anozie, Adeel Akhtar, Stefania LaVie Owen
Rating: 2.5/5

Law 41.9.4 of men’s T20I playing conditions

The fielding side shall be ready to start each over within 60 seconds of the previous over being completed.
An electronic clock will be displayed at the ground that counts down seconds from 60 to zero.
The clock is not required or, if already started, can be cancelled if:
• A new batter comes to the wicket between overs.
• An official drinks interval has been called.
• The umpires have approved the on field treatment of an injury to a batter or fielder.
• The time lost is for any circumstances beyond the control of the fielding side.
• The third umpire starts the clock either when the ball has become dead at the end of the previous over, or a review has been completed.
• The team gets two warnings if they are not ready to start overs after the clock reaches zero.
• On the third and any subsequent occasion in an innings, the bowler’s end umpire awards five runs.

WHAT MACRO FACTORS ARE IMPACTING META TECH MARKETS?

• Looming global slowdown and recession in key economies

• Russia-Ukraine war

• Interest rate hikes and the rising cost of debt servicing

• Oil price volatility

• Persisting inflationary pressures

• Exchange rate fluctuations

• Shortage of labour/skills

• A resurgence of Covid?

Profile box

Company name: baraka
Started: July 2020
Founders: Feras Jalbout and Kunal Taneja
Based: Dubai and Bahrain
Sector: FinTech
Initial investment: $150,000
Current staff: 12
Stage: Pre-seed capital raising of $1 million
Investors: Class 5 Global, FJ Labs, IMO Ventures, The Community Fund, VentureSouq, Fox Ventures, Dr Abdulla Elyas (private investment)

The specs

Engine: 2.0-litre turbo 4-cyl

Transmission: eight-speed auto

Power: 190bhp

Torque: 300Nm

Price: Dh169,900

On sale: now

 


 

ROUTE TO TITLE

Round 1: Beat Leolia Jeanjean 6-1, 6-2
Round 2: Beat Naomi Osaka 7-6, 1-6, 7-5
Round 3: Beat Marie Bouzkova 6-4, 6-2
Round 4: Beat Anastasia Potapova 6-0, 6-0
Quarter-final: Beat Marketa Vondrousova 6-0, 6-2
Semi-final: Beat Coco Gauff 6-2, 6-4
Final: Beat Jasmine Paolini 6-2, 6-2

The specs: 2018 BMW R nineT Scrambler

Price, base / as tested Dh57,000

Engine 1,170cc air/oil-cooled flat twin four-stroke engine

Transmission Six-speed gearbox

Power 110hp) @ 7,750rpm

Torque 116Nm @ 6,000rpm

Fuel economy, combined 5.3L / 100km

The Greatest Royal Rumble card as it stands

50-man Royal Rumble

Universal Championship Brock Lesnar (champion) v Roman Reigns in a steel cage match

Intercontinental Championship Seth Rollins (champion) v The Miz v Finn Balor v Samoa Joe

SmackDown Tag Team Championship The Bludgeon Brothers (champions) v The Usos

Casket match The Undertaker v Chris Jericho

John Cena v Triple H

Matches to be announced

WWE World Heavyweight Championship, Raw Tag Team Championship, United States Championship and the Cruiserweight Championship are all due to be defended

Dengue fever symptoms
  • High fever
  • Intense pain behind your eyes
  • Severe headache
  • Muscle and joint pains
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Swollen glands
  • Rash

If symptoms occur, they usually last for two-seven days

Our legal columnist

Name: Yousef Al Bahar

Advocate at Al Bahar & Associate Advocates and Legal Consultants, established in 1994

Education: Mr Al Bahar was born in 1979 and graduated in 2008 from the Judicial Institute. He took after his father, who was one of the first Emirati lawyers

'The Batman'

Stars:Robert Pattinson

Director:Matt Reeves

Rating: 5/5

Company Profile

Name: Direct Debit System
Started: Sept 2017
Based: UAE with a subsidiary in the UK
Industry: FinTech
Funding: Undisclosed
Investors: Elaine Jones
Number of employees: 8

COMPANY PROFILE

Company: Eco Way
Started: December 2023
Founder: Ivan Kroshnyi
Based: Dubai, UAE
Industry: Electric vehicles
Investors: Bootstrapped with undisclosed funding. Looking to raise funds from outside

Cinco in numbers

Dh3.7 million

The estimated cost of Victoria Swarovski’s gem-encrusted Michael Cinco wedding gown

46

The number, in kilograms, that Swarovski’s wedding gown weighed.

1,000

The hours it took to create Cinco’s vermillion petal gown, as seen in his atelier [note, is the one he’s playing with in the corner of a room]

50

How many looks Cinco has created in a new collection to celebrate Ballet Philippines’ 50th birthday

3,000

The hours needed to create the butterfly gown worn by Aishwarya Rai to the 2018 Cannes Film Festival.

1.1 million

The number of followers that Michael Cinco’s Instagram account has garnered.

EMIRATES'S REVISED A350 DEPLOYMENT SCHEDULE

Edinburgh: November 4 (unchanged)

Bahrain: November 15 (from September 15); second daily service from January 1

Kuwait: November 15 (from September 16)

Mumbai: January 1 (from October 27)

Ahmedabad: January 1 (from October 27)

Colombo: January 2 (from January 1)

Muscat: March 1 (from December 1)

Lyon: March 1 (from December 1)

Bologna: March 1 (from December 1)

Source: Emirates

The specs

Engine: 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8
Power: 620hp from 5,750-7,500rpm
Torque: 760Nm from 3,000-5,750rpm
Transmission: Eight-speed dual-clutch auto
On sale: Now
Price: From Dh1.05 million ($286,000)

Our family matters legal consultant

Name: Dr Hassan Mohsen Elhais

Position: legal consultant with Al Rowaad Advocates and Legal Consultants.

Company profile

Name: Tratok Portal

Founded: 2017

Based: UAE

Sector: Travel & tourism

Size: 36 employees

Funding: Privately funded

Latest
Most Read
Top Videos