The Wisconsin men’s soccer team wrapped up its spring season this past Sunday with the annual alumni match at the McClimon Soccer Complex. The spring season, which consisted of 12 matches — including a four-match spring break trip to Miami, provided the coaches and the entire squad with a chance to observe the progress made since last fall, and to evaluate the areas of improvement needed for next fall. “[The spring season] went really well,” goalkeeper Jake Settle said. “We didn’t lose to a college team — which is a big deal, and we got a bunch of shutouts, which was good because we had only one all last fall. We lost a lot of firepower up top, but I think this spring we’ve been getting it back with some other players.”One of the tallest hurdles the Badgers will face next season will be replacing the finishing abilities and goal-scoring of graduates Nick Van Sicklen and Jed Hohlbein.“When you graduate 75 percent of your scoring, you kind of wonder where [the scoring] is going to come from,” assistant coach Nick Pasquarello said. “This spring, a lot of guys have really stepped it up. With the addition of Victor (Diaz), since he wasn’t in the equation (last fall), I think he is going to provide a lot for us up top. Reid Johnson has also done a good job of scoring some goals for us this year, as has Matt Jelacic and Eric Ortega — those are the guys we’re going to rely on to replace some that scoring that we lost through graduation.” In addition to filling the spots at the forward position, Pasquarello is also concerned about the vital gap in the midfield left by 2004 tri-captain Noah Goerlitz. Goerlitz earned second team all-Big Ten honors at defensive midfielder behind Indiana’s Danny O’Rourke, the national player of the year.“It’s very difficult to replace a guy like Noah Goerlitz,” Pasquarello said. “He came and gave it every day … he played through injury, he played through adversity, and he’s just a guy that you’d just love to coach for the rest of your life. He was an honest, hardworking player — probably one of the better defensive midfielders that we’ve had come through in a long time. Right now, we’re looking at a couple of guys to fill that role, and we’re going to have a little bit of a competition, so hopefully that competition will bring out the best in the guys.”The departure of goalkeeper Eric Hanson has also opened the door for junior Jake Settle and sophomore Mike Hood, as both will look to fill the vacant spot in net.Next fall, the current squad will welcome the arrival of forwards Eric Conklin (Rockford, Ill.) and Sam Van De Laarschot (Eden Prairie, Minn.), midfielders Scott Lorenz (Barrington, Ill.) and Kenny Dix (Atlanta, Ga.), defenders Zack Lambo (Crystal Lake, Ill.) and Andy Miller (Barrington, Ill.) and goalkeeper Byron Neal (Cincinnati, Ohio). Neal will also compete for the starting job in goal.“In terms of our recruiting class — the seven guys we have coming in next fall — we’re extremely excited,” Pasquarello said. “We are still going to be a pretty young team without any seniors, but we’re never going to let our inexperience be used as an excuse. We’re very comfortable with, and confident in the players we have and the young men we have coming in next year.”The Badgers’ depth could be boosted by the addition of walk-ons as well, as several try-out players practiced with the team during the spring.“As for the walk-ons we had this spring, we’re still going to wait and see on one or two of them — whether or not we’re going to keep them for the fall,” Pasquarello said. “We’re very pleased with the performance that [the walk-ons] gave this spring, and they kept the level of play very high for us … they kept our players honest by challenging them day in and day out.”Filling the holes left by departing seniors will not be the only difficult task faced by the squad, as a challenging and demanding schedule also awaits the team next fall. In addition to the usual tough Big Ten schedule, which features opponents such as defending NCAA champion Indiana, Wisconsin travels to three separate non-conference tournaments.“The main thing that jumps out at us about next fall is just going to be the increase in our strength of schedule,” Pasquarello said. “The Big Ten was the No. 1 ranked conference in the country last season. When you mix that with some of the non-conference opponents that we have in terms of Portland, Washington, Drake, and UNLV — who are coming to our opening tournament — and then playing Oakland and Fairleigh Dickinson, it’s going to be a very competitive and difficult schedule.”Though the team’s fall fixtures may appear intimidating, Pasquarello does not feel threatened, and believes each player will come in next season prepared for hard work and ready for the action. Despite the loss of four standout seniors, Wisconsin returns a young and balanced team that will be looking to build on last season, a year that saw the Badgers upset top-25 teams Tulsa and Penn State. “We’re expecting to have 24 or 25 guys on our roster,” Pasquarello said. “We’re also expecting most of them to produce for us at any given time and to compete for playing time right away.”
Submit Share Related Articles CEOs of Sweden’s leading igaming operators have warned health minister Ardalan Shekarabi not to ‘torpedo his own gambling regulations’, emphasising that further restrictions on the sector will result in an increase of punters betting via unlicensed operators.As health minister overseeing Sweden’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, Shekarabi has ordered Swedish parliament to adopt a series of temporary online gambling restrictions, protecting national citizens.In an open letter, the CEOs warned the Minister about the increasingly low channelisation on the Swedish gambling market.The letter said: “On January 1, 2019, new gambling regulations were introduced in Sweden. Minister for Public Administration Ardalan Shekarabi spearheaded the reform, with cooperation from the opposition, resulting in broad support in the Swedish Parliament.“The overall mantra was that the state should regain control of the gambling market after decades of gambling moving to companies that operated in Sweden without a license. Parliament’s preferred method of effective gambling market control is what is known as channelling.“As expected, this resulted in a crossroads where companies, with the aim of maintaining a long-term business model, welcomed more insight into operations and greater control over players’ behaviour in exchange for a well-functioning and sustainable gaming market.”The letter has since been signed by 12 CEOs, including: Pontus Lindwall, CEO of Betsson AB; Henrik Tjärnström, CEO, Kindred Group; Gustaf Hagman, Group CEO, LeoVegas; Therese Hillman, CEO, NetEnt AB; Ulrik Bengtsson, Group CEO, William Hill; Lahcene Merzoug, CEO, ComeOn Group; Henric Andersson,CEO, Suprnation; Tomas Bäckman,CEO, Hero Gaming; Alexander Stevendahl,CEO, Videoslots Ltd; Daniel Lindberg,CEO, Quickspin; Shelly Suter-Hadad, CEO, Casumo and Anthony Werkman, CEO, Betway.CEOs urged Shekarabi to ‘change strategy and protect the Swedish licensing system’, emphasising that a high rate of channelisation into the licensing system is necessary for effective player protection.Furthermore, the licensed operators highlighted their tax contributions to the Swedish economy, reinforcing the idea that a fall in betting levels via licensed operators will result in a fall in taxes.The letter continued: “We must remember that it is the customers who choose where the best product is. In a digital world, that power does not lie with the state, or with us as corporations for that matter.“We operate in a digital world and have direct access to all the relevant data needed to evaluate what measures can help strengthen our players’ safety and security while still providing attractive offers and products. The sad thing is that the government, with Ardalan Shekarabi at the forefront, does not want to talk to us about how we can work together and, with help from the insights we possess, develop a well-functioning Swedish gambling market.“This became especially clear when the Minister, on April 23, proposed new emergency restrictions, proclaiming that, “The Government sees major risks in the gambling sector right now.” But the overall gambling industry (private and state) doesn’t see the same pattern at all. Instead, we see how gambling has diminished compared to what it looked like before the covid-19 crisis struck.“Every company, regardless of industry, wants to be where the customers are. If the customers leave, the companies will follow suit. The Swedish gambling market not only provides safety and security to players but also contributes billions annually in much-needed tax revenue and investment in sports. By slowly eroding the Swedish gaming market month by month, the government risks bringing about major cuts in security, tax revenue, and societal investment.“We can only be left to wonder why Ardalan Shekarabi wants to torpedo his own gambling regulations.”Commenting on the letter, Secretary-General for Swedish trade association Branschföreningen för Onlinespel (BOS) Gustaf Hoffstedt, said: “My estimation is that the twelve gambling CEOs represent approximately half of the Swedish online gambling market.“It is crucial for the success of the licensing system and the safeguarding of customer protection that Mr Shekarabi withdraws his additional measures towards the locally licensed operators.“The licensing system is fragile and can’t endure further attacks from the Minister. He must do the opposite and safeguard the licensing system in the name of consumer protection.“From our perspective as a trade body for the industry we now open up and invite all CEOs for gambling companies to sign the petition, being a member of us or not. Our only demand is that the company stands by the petition and if it is a B2C company that it holds a Swedish gambling license.” StumbleUpon Share Björn Nilsson: How Triggy is delivering digestible data through pre-set triggers August 28, 2020 SBC Magazine Issue 10: Kaizen Gaming rebrand and focus for William Hill CEO August 25, 2020 Kambi takes full control of LeoVegas sportsbook portfolio August 26, 2020
Agbesi Nutsi, Camp Commandant of Ghana Village in Brazil during the 2014 World Cup has called for the disbandment of the various supporters union in the country.According to Nutsu, all the splinter groups must be disbanded and re-organised under one umbrella to ensure effective organisation.Testifying before the Justice Senyo Dzamefe Commission, Monday, Nutsu said organising the supporters under one umbrella will help in developing appropriate budget for their organisation.This he said will help in strategizing fund raising strategies to help in organising them for international competitions.He however disagreed with assertions that, supporters should not be organised for competitions adding, they are very important to the progress of the team.He said there must be efforts to distinguish between holiday makers and supporters since, most of the challenges encountered in Brasil were from holiday makers who found their way into the camp due to protocol arrangements. Nutsu, however denied allegations that he received per diem worth $25,000 during his stay at Brazil, saying “if I had received such an amount of money, my life style will change”.“My Lord, I did not receive anything for the work I did in Brazil. It was a sacrificial job for mother Ghana. I had free accommodation, food and travelled to Brazil for free.“That was enough for me since it has boosted my credentials because I went there to work for mother Ghana.“My Lord $25, 000 will do a lot of things in my life. If I had that money I will not be like this.” Nutsu told the commission.