Man United pound Newcastle, go to top
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London (dpa) - Christiano Roanldo's first hat-trick for Manchester Utd football club saw the champions overtake Arsenal at the top of the English Premier League Saturday with an imperious 6-0 win over managerless Newcastle Utd at Old Trafford.
The champions took advantage of Arsenal's 1-1 draw with Birmingham and they now lead their rivals on goal difference with both sides on 51 points. Chelsea closed the gap on the leaders to four points points with a 2-0 win at home to Tottenham while Liverpool head the following pack with Everton, Aston Villa and Manchester City all equal on 39 points.
Newcastle started the match at Old Trafford promisingly, playing noticeably more attractive football than under former manager Sam Allardyce. After an even first half, the visitors felt themselves unlucky not to be leading after a Michael Owen goal was wrongly ruled out for offside.
But Manchester Utd started the second half in an altogether different mood. They pounded Newcastle with incessant attacks and took the lead within 5 minutes after Ronaldo's free kick was struck low and hard under the defensive wall. Carlos Tevez doubled the lead after an horrendous mix-up in the Newcastle defence as goalkeeper Shay Given's clearance was struck directly at the Brazilian defender Cacapa.
03:53 Jan 13, 2008
Japan offers to Mekong neighbours
Tokyo (Agencies) - Japan will provide a combined six billion yen (about 2 billion baht) in aid to four nations in the Mekong River region to fund various projects, including highway construction, Kyodo News reported on Saturday.
Foreign Minister Masahiko Komura will pledge the financial assistance to Cambodia, Laos, Burma and Vietnam at a meeting in Tokyo on Wednesday, Kyodo said.
The Tokyo meeting, the first of its kind, brings together Komura's counterparts from those nations plus Thailand, it said.
Among the aid-covered items will be a project to build two highways linking Vietnam, Thailand and Burma that are termed the 'Indochina East-West Economic Corridors,' Kyodo said.
Japan wants to place emphasis on funneling its foreign aid resources into the Mekong region, whose economic development has lagged behind other Southeast Asian regions, it said.
Komura will hold bilateral talks with Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos on Wednesday and with Burma and Thailand on Thursday, it added.
18:58 Jan 12, 2008
PM urges unity among youth
Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont has urged children and youth to practice his motto of "Unity, discipline, be eager to learn and promote virtue" given on Children's Day (Saturday January 12) in their daily lives.
Gen Surayud said while presiding over the opening of Children's Day at the Education Ministry that his motto, if practiced, would bring happiness and success to children.
He also urged parents and guardians of children to look after them so that they could become a strong assets of the country in the future.
A variety of learning activities were held at the Ministry of Education, including events to honour the late princess Galyani Vadhana, elder sister of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, and allowing children to visit the education minister's office. (TNA)
16:43 Jan 12, 2008