This season has been one to forget for reigning Premier League champions Chelsea, who are currently fifth-place in the table. Sunday’s visit of fourth-place Tottenham to Stamford Bridge could prove pivotal in the Blues attempts at sealing a Champions League spot.
The Blues have a deficit of five points to the visitors in the race for a top-four finish in the English top-flight. Anything other than a win would make leapfrogging Mauricio Pochettino’s side very difficult.
History on Chelsea’s side
The recent history of this fixture is heavily on the side of the team from south west London. The Blues have something of a hoodoo against Tottenham at Stamford Bridge in the last two decades, as Spurs have failed to record a win at Chelsea in the Premier League era, a massive 22 games in all competitions without a win.
The home side has also scored at least two goals in their last seven meetings with Spurs at Stamford Bridge. In truth, Stamford Bridge has been a graveyard for Tottenham’s hopes and dreams in recent years.
Home and away
This clash pits a team with a strong home record against a team who are dangerous on their travels. Winning eight of their last ten league games on home soil, Chelsea are the definition of a team that enjoys home comforts. The Blues have also managed six clean sheets in their last nine league outings in the top-flight.
Their home games have also produced good value for money when it comes to goals scored, as there have been over 2.5 goals scored in the four of the last five games on home soil at Stamford Bridge.
Spurs went through a difficult from October to December when the north London side lost four of their five away games in the Premier League. However, since the last week of December, Spurs are unbeaten in six league games on their travels in the league, claiming four wins in the process. A key to that run has been their attacking threat, as they have scored two or more goals in four of those six unbeaten games.
This game should prove pivotal in the race for top-four places this season. The pair has been in around the top-four spots in the Premier League for the last few seasons.
This could be a tight encounter, as the two teams are pretty even in terms of quality. The Blues are slight favourites to win this clash, but it is unlikely to be an easy win that is for sure.
There are some major factors that may determine the result of this clash. One of those is the absence of Tottenham’s Harry Kane.
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino was very guarded about when the England striker could return from an ankle injury. However, the Argentinian boss has stated that the 24-year-old could return to the squad. It seems unlikely that the striker will return to the starting line-up.
Chelsea’s first-choice goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois could also miss out due to injury, so back-up ‘keeper Willy Caballero could play in goal for the Blues. Antonio Conte also must choose between Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata for the lone striker role.
Adding everything up, history, statistics and line-ups, I have to say that the draw looks like a very likely outcome in this vital London derby.
Who will come out on top in this vital clash?
Tron (TRX) officially launched its main chain test network today, marking a big step forward in its aim to create an infrastructure to truly decentralize the internet. Over the past few weeks, the price of Tron token has almost doubled to $0.05. Tron also became one of the top ten coins on the basis of market capitalization, pushing back Monero and Dash.
However, it was unable to stay in the list of top ten cryptocoins due to an increase in profit booking, following rally in the past few days. In this article, let us look at the reasons for the recent rally and why the Tron community is very much excited about the testnet launch.
The launch of testnet was tweeted by Justin Sun, the founder of Tron network.
Recently, the Tron team successfully tested the transfer function, which allows transmitting content from one point to another through the Tron network, without any hurdles. It will enable Tron to grab a considerable market share in the entertainment industry as content creators would be encouraged to use it for getting rewarded without any hassles. Tron’s network simplifies the process of buying/selling content, while providing security to both creator and user.
— Justin Sun (@justinsuntron) March 31, 2018
Even the most talked about applications sometimes have bugs, which are misused by hackers or nefarious people. Tron has a dedicated team to identify and remove bugs in the network. The also have a successful track record of debugging the block generation system to ensure that nodes perform as expected.
The team is also working to speed up transactions within the network by implementing changes in the fork logic. Notably, Tron is already one of the fastest blockchain projects.
Using the testnet facility, developers can create and deploy smart contracts in an environment that is arguably better than Ethereum. As testnet is similar to mainnet, the success of testnet will be applauded by the market and the value of the token will begin rising in the days leading to the launch of the mainnet, which has now been prepended to May, instead of July. Furthermore, Tron is highly scalable and will have the lowest transaction fees, compared to similar platforms in the market.
Tron (TRX) is also expected to perform a coin burn today or in the days to come. As coin burns significantly reduce the supply of coins, it will generally have a positive impact on the price. Finally, the article will not be complete without mentioning about the marketing capabilities of Justin Sun, the founder of Tron. He has already made sure that Tron’s popularity reaches sky high by advertising on Nasdaq screen at Times Square.
Is this the advertisement of TRON, it was listed on Nasdaq, and the testnet. pic.twitter.com/4gMQM8mjIs
— Andy_lucky (@Andy1037470697) March 30, 2018
So, Tron community will be anxiously watching for a breakout in the days to come.
The Bank of England has set out its vision for a renewed Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) service that will deliver a materially stronger, more resilient, flexible and innovative sterling settlement system for the United Kingdom to respond to the rapidly changing payments landscape. In this regard, the bank is conducting a proof of concept test to validate the use of blockchain in RTGS.
The RTGS blueprint, published in May 2017, stated that the renewed service will offer a diverse and flexible range of settlement models, to enable existing and emerging payment infrastructures to access central bank money.
The Bank is undertaking a Proof of Concept (PoC) to understand how a renewed RTGS service could be capable of supporting settlement in systems operating on innovative payment technologies, such as those built on DLT (Distributed Ledger Technology) or blockchain technology.
The Bank is partnering with a range of firms developing payment arrangements using innovative technologies: Baton Systems, Clearmatics Technologies Ltd, R3 and Token. These firms are engaging with the PoC in a range of ways.
The inclusion of multiple firms in the PoC will give broader insight into the range of functionality the Bank might need to offer to support this sector. Participants in the PoC have access to a cloud-based system developed by the Bank which replicates a version of the prefunded net settlement arrangement a renewed RTGS service will offer to the major UK retail payment systems. The PoC is exploring whether innovative settlement systems are able to interface with that functionality and identifying ways in which the renewed RTGS service functionality could be expanded.
The Bank expects to publish a summary of findings from the PoC later in 2018. This will set out any enhancements to the settlement functionality offered in the renewed RTGS service to accommodate payment systems using innovative technologies. It will also set out any further work that needs to be undertaken in order to identify ways in which the renewed RTGS service functionality could be expanded.
Notably, in its recent announcement, the BOE has stated that it would not straightaway move to the blockchain technology due to the immaturity of the system.
“Although the Bank has concluded that Distributed LedgerTechnology (DLT) is not yet sufficiently mature to provide the core for the next generation of RTGS, it places a high priority on ensuring that the new service is capable of interfacing with DLT as and when it is developed in the wider sterling markets.”
When Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez tested positive earlier this month for ‘Clenbuterol’, boxing fans were shocked and disappointed as they knew that the re-match between Gennady “GGG” Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez scheduled for May 5 in Las Vegas, Nevada literally hung on a thread.
Canelo was found to have used Clenbuterol which is a banned performance enhancing drug that athletes use to build lean muscle mass and cut fat. The Mexico superstar denied PED charges and claimed that the drug entered his system through contaminated meat which is common in Mexico.
His team remained confident that the issue would be cleared and the fight would proceed as per schedule. Now, the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) has filed a formal complaint against Canelo for breaching anti-doping procedures. NSAC had earlier issued a temporary suspension and set a hearing for April 10.
That hearing has now been pushed back to April 18 after the official NSAC filing. If found guilty Canelo Alvarez could face a ban for a minimum of 9 months and up to 24 months. This is the first time that Alvarez has tested positive for a banned substance and the NSAC has tended to follow a policy of issuing a 12 month suspension for first time offenders.
The NSAC filing has just about cancelled the May 5 bout and it looks like boxing fans will once again have to wait to see two of the biggest superstars in boxing settle square off after their first fight ended in a draw.
NSAC Commission Not Buying Contaminated Meat Excuse
GGG had earlier lashed out at Canelo Alvarez and his team for putting their fight in jeopardy and using banned substances. GGG labelled Alvarez a cheat and said that the fighter deliberately used PED’s and this is not the first time that he has taken PED’s. NSAC executive director Robert Bennett is also not buying the contaminated meat argument.
In a statement, Bennett said
Alvarez’s utilization, ingestion and/or consumption of Clenbuterol, whether intentional or not, constitutes an anti-doping violation. By allowing Clenbuterol to enter his system, Alvarez engaged in conduct that reflected discredit to unarmed combat and he is guilty of foul or unsportsmanlike conduct that was detrimental to a contest
Since the fate of Canelo Alvarez will be determined only by April 18, there will be a slim chance that GGG’s promoters will be able to find a replacement fighter on such short notice.
The Phil Ivey edge sorting controversy has been in the news for the last few years and has once again made the headlines. This time around the Phil Ivey edge sorting controversy was drudged up again in the media after U.S. District Court Judge Noel Hillman dropped five out of the six counts that Marina District Development Corp, the parent company of the Borgata Casino brought against Gemaco.
Those who are not familiar with the Phil Ivey edge sorting case will have to go back to 2012 when Ivey and his playing partner Cheung Yin Sun played baccarat and craps which resulted in them winning close to $10 million.
Reports would later surface that Ivey and Cheung used edge-sorting to take advantage of a defect in the cards that were dealt.
Gemaco Playing Cards supplied that defective set of cards and the Borgata’s parent company decided to file a lawsuit against Ivey, Cheung and Gemaco. Judge Hillman had earlier made a decision which forced Ivey and Cheung to return all their winnings to Borgata as edge-sorting is an illegal card counting technique.
There was no ruling on Gemaco at that point of time. Now, Judge Hillman has finally settled the case and absolved Gemaco of all allegations except one. The only claim that Gemaco will have to settle is to replace the defective cards which is the equivalent of paying a little over $25.
Judge Holds Players Accountable Rather Than Defective Cards
The Borgata had brought charges against Gemaco on the basis of negligence but the 27 page ruling from Judge Hillman cleared the company and put the emphasis on the two players. Borgata will most likely move past the final charge which can only fetch them $26.88.
In his ruling, Judge Hillman said
Thus, it is not Gemaco’s cards that were the ‘but for’ cause of Borgata’s losses, but rather all the subsequent required elements requested by Ivey and agreed to by Borgata, each a required and integral part, which together caused Borgata’s losses. It is true that the scheme would not have worked without asymmetrical cards. They were necessary for the scheme. But they were equally insufficient.
Phil Ivey has continued to maintain that he is innocent and never cheated but only took advantage of loopholes to beat the house at its own game.
The Premier League returns to this weekend after a two-week international break. We are now at the business end of the campaign with still so much left to be decided. Here is what is happening in the English top-flight this weekend:
Everton v Manchester City (5:30 PM)
On Saturday evening, Premier League leaders Manchester City could move to within one win of securing the title when they travel to Goodison Park to face Everton.
Everton has all but secured their Premier League status after recording a 2-1 win at Stoke last time out to reach the 40-point mark. The Toffees have now won consecutive games in the English top-flight. Sam Allardyce’s team have a reasonably strong home record, having won six of their last nine games at Goodison Park in the top-flight, including their last three.
Manchester City has been the dominant force in English football and are currently 16 points clear of second-place Manchester United, who they face next weekend.
A win in this game and a victory at Old Trafford would be enough for Pep Guardiola’s side to clinch the title. City heads into this game on the back of four straight wins in the league so will be confident of victory.
However, Guardiola has faced Everton on three occasions and failed to beat the Toffees during his career as Citizens boss. City has also won just one of their last six encounters with the men from Merseyside. They will be desperate to make it two wins from seven meetings.
Chelsea v Tottenham (4 PM)
This clash could be massive in the race to secure a top-four finish, as the home side are playing catch-up to the visitors for fourth spot.
Chelsea has endured a difficult second season under Italian boss Antonio Conte after winning the title last season. The Blues are currently fifth in the table, five points behind the visitors in the table. A victory for Conte’s side would put them right back into contention for a return to the Champions League spots.
A Blues victory is anything but a foregone conclusion, as the reigning champions have lost four of their last six top-flight games. However, history is on their side, as Spurs have never won at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League.
Tottenham will head into this game in confident mood after recording four straight wins in the Premier League. Pochettino’s side are also unbeaten in 12 top-flight outings.
Spurs are also six matches unbeaten on the road following a five-game winless run on their travels in the league.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side could even have the boost of striker Harry Kane returning to the squad after injury. The England international seems highly unlikely to start the game, though.
The team from north London will head into this game as slight underdogs, despite being above the Blues in the table.
Other Premier League games this weekend: 3 PM kick-offs unless stated
Crystal Palace v Liverpool (12:30 PM)
Brighton v Leicester
West Ham v Southampton
Manchester United v Swansea
Newcastle v Huddersfield
Watford v Bournemouth
West Brom v Burnley
Arsenal v Stoke (1:30 PM)
Where will the big Premier League results be this weekend?
London-based Coinfirm, a blockchain compay, has entered into an agreement with PKO Bank Polski (or PKO BP), a Polish bank, to provide a proprietary blockchain-based document verification platform named “Trudatum.” The project is a real-world use case of a Trudatum, a blockchain based software, which enables storing data permanently and in an immutable fashion.
The Trudatum software enables PKO BP to create and store millions of documents ever year, making the bank a leader in global blockchain technology adoption. The successful implementation also clearly doubts, if any, about the ability of blockchain technology to comply with safety and regulatory requirements of banking sector.
PKO BP, the largest bank in Central and Eastern Europe, has been running a pilot project with Trudatum for the past one year. The pilot project began as a result of the “Let’s Fintech” accelerator program. Coinfirm, in the meanwhile, has been running pilot projects with clients across Western Europe, the US and Japan.
Following the agreement, Trudatum will be integrated with PKO’s current systems. Furthermore, Trudatum will enable verifying the veracity of bank documents. Every document recorded in the blockchain will be allocated an irreversible hash (abbreviation) signed with the bank’s private key. This will enable a client to verify the file remotely and decide whether the documents are true or tampered.
Furthermore, the bank can now perform efficient supervision of transaction history and data verification, resulting in cost and time savings. Trudatum also permits cryptographic security for digital signatures. This means, digital data, including files and documents, can be handled with confidence.
Jakub Fijołek, CTO and co-founder of Coinfirm, said
“The impact of our technology can be described pretty simply: it fills the gap between innovation and the need for security which lies at the foundations of every serious global organisation. Implementation of Trudatum by one of the largest financial companies in Central and Eastern Europe brings huge satisfaction to us, and is a milestone for the market.
“Coinfirm is just two years old, but we are already providing bank-grade compliance to blockchain and crypto companies around the world. We make it possible for firms to use blockchain technology without having to worry about security or navigating evolving regulations.”
Paweł Kuskowski, CEO and Co-Founder of Coinfirm, added
“Polish banks, who are already very innovative, continue to push the boundaries and pioneer applications of new technologies such as blockchain. This partnership, with one of the biggest financial institutions in Europe, is a gamechanger for the global market. We’re sure that, in the coming years, financial institutions all over the world will be looking up to PKO BP and learning how to successfully apply blockchain. First, it demonstrates that big players are ready for blockchain implementations, and that there are a number of very significant use cases which are adding huge value not only to the bank, but also to its customers. Second, it overturns the myth of banks’ restraint with regard to blockchain innovations.
“Polish institutions have moved deftly when it comes to testing, and now implementing, blockchain solutions that provide greater efficiency and security. Financial innovation hubs like London run the risk of being left behind when it comes to crypto.”
Grzegorz Pawlicki, Director of PKO Bank Polski’s Innovation Bureau, says
“Blockchain technology can revolutionise the financial industry, which is why we pay so much attention to it. We want to understand it well and use it as widely as possible. Blockchain meets the key requirements for durable media, guaranteeing confidentiality and integrity of the documents delivered to clients, which additionally increases the attractiveness of this technology for the banks.”
The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has published a cautionary note about Olsson Capital, a Bulgarian firm that has been offering CFDs – a derivative product – in cryptocurrencies, Forex, stocks, commodities, and indices, without authorization from the regulator.
The website of Olsson Capital indicates that it operates from Bulgaria, but has provided a UK contact number for assistance. The notice, which was published on March 28, 2018, alleges that the company is targeting people in the UK.
According to the FCA
“We believe this firm has been providing financial services or products in the UK without our authorisation. Find out why to be especially wary of dealing with this unauthorised firm and how to protect yourself from scammers.”
Earlier this week, the European Securities and Markets Authority’s agreed to prohibit binary options and restrict CFDs to protect retail investors. ESMA, along with National Competent Authorities (NCAs), concluded that there exists a significant investor protection concern in relation to CFDs and binary options offered to retail investors.
The agreed measures include:
1. Binary Options – a prohibition on the marketing, distribution or sale of binary options to retail investors; and
2. Contracts for Differences
a.Leverage limits on the opening of a position by a retail client from 30:1 to 2:1, which vary according to the volatility of the underlying:
• 30:1 for major currency pairs;
• 20:1 for non-major currency pairs, gold and major indices;
• 10:1 for commodities other than gold and non-major equity indices;
• 5:1 for individual equities and other reference values;
• 2:1 for cryptocurrencies;
b. A margin close-out rule on a per account basis. This will standardize the percentage of margin (at 50% of minimum required margin) at which providers are required to close out one or more retail client’s open CFDs;
c. Negative balance protection on a per account basis. This will provide an overall guaranteed limit on retail client losses;
d. A restriction on the incentives offered to trade CFDs; and
e. A standardized risk warning, including the percentage of losses on a CFD provider’s retail investor accounts.
In accordance with MiFIR (Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation), ESMA can only introduce temporary intervention measures on a three monthly basis. Before the end of the three months, ESMA will consider the need to extend the intervention measures for a further three months.
ESMA intends to adopt these measures in the official languages of the EU in the coming weeks, following which ESMA will publish an official notice on its website. The measures will then be published in the Official Journal of the EU (OJ) and will start to apply one month, for binary options, and two months, for CFDs, after their publication in the OJ.
Trinity is the long-awaited user-friendly IOTA wallet that has been in development for the last few months. The development team was aided by members of the community, who raised the mobile wallet to new heights, and who began working on the desktop implementation.
The team has released the mobile wallet to testers yesterday, 6 days ahead of schedule.
Additionally, the Trinity developer team has opened a limited entry program for 100 new desktop alpha testers. This application process will close after the first 200 applications, and the most suitable 100 testers will be contacted to join the program. One of the unverified alpha testers has posted positive feedback about the desktop wallet on Reddit.
It is one of the latest innovations in wallet applications, released by a developer named Charlie Varley. The wallet was earlier known as UCL wallet (UCL stands for University College London where Varley studied). Later it was branded as the Trinity wallet. The wallet was initially developed as an alternative to the existing IOTA wallets – IOTA’s own official desktop wallet and a third party android wallet -available in the crypto market.
Varley’s project started as a one man project. Later, spotting the potential of the cross-platform application for mobile devices acting as an alternative to IOTA wallet, many of the IOTA community’s developers joined hands with Varley to take the project forward. That resulted in the addition of several new features to the Trinity wallet, while speeding up the wallet development process. Following this, IOTA Foundation, the Germany-based organization that is behind the IOTA project took interest in the project and included the innovative wallet technology in their ecosystem.
Furthermore, IOTA Foundation also hired Varley and his team. By January, the Trinity project came under IOTA Foundation. An official alpha test on iOS and Android, involving nearly 250 users began in the same month. At that time it was guaranteed that Trinity will remain open-source, similar to official desktop wallet.
— IOTA (@iotatoken) March 29, 2018
Trinity wallet developers have announced that the audit process has begun, led by accessec GmbH. This audit will be thorough, examining all features of the app and its dependencies. In consultation with accesec, the developers have estimated that this process will take 6–7 weeks. The audit period may be completed earlier or extended further, if necessary.
When the audit gets completed, the project will move to a public beta test where everyone can try out the mobile wallet via the official app stores, without any special invitation. At this time, the developers will also release the full audit report and the complete source code for public review.
The developers are in touch with app stores to establish official IOTA Foundation accounts, under which the Trinity wallet will be published officially. This will further increase user confidence in the wallet.
The developers expect rapid progression to beta testing, given the cross-platform approach adopted. The developers insist that security audit will be performed prior to beta and full releases.
This was a feedback posted on Reddit by an IOTA community member who has claimed to be one among the alpha testers.
“Desktop wallet looks great and runs super smooth so far, matches the mobile edition perfectly. Auto re-attaches, password encypt, even auto log out if inactive on desktop, multiple wallet seed support, QR code, 2FA, and the mobile even has facial recognition. Can send auto calculated fiat amounts and has tons of languages already. Surprised the desktop version is already so far along to match the mobile now. Good job Trinity team!”
The beta release is expected to carry the following features:
– Statefulness — the wallet will maintain a record of your transaction history -and balances, thereby vastly improving loading time.
– Seed storage — the wallet will securely encrypt your seed.
– Seed generation.
– Multi-seed support — multiple seeds can be added and managed by one app.
– Snapshot transition — the wallet will handle snapshots. No more 0 balance post snapshot.
– Ability to print a paper wallet.
– Price graph.
– Address QR scanning.
– Support for many languages.
– Standard and expert mode — additional features and information displayed to more experienced users.
– Local and remote POW.
– Theme selection — choice of 8 themes.
– Fiat conversion across a range of currencies.
– Automatic fiat conversion on send — ability to send as fiat or iota value.
– Two factor authentication — TOTP for use in apps like Authy and Google Authenticator.
MMA fans have gone used to turning on their televisions on Saturday night and tuning into UFC. However the last three weeks the UFC has not hosted any events as the organization prepares to host UFC 223 which is scheduled to take place on Saturday night, April 7 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
The UFC will start to heavily promote its UFC 223 pay-per-view from next week with press conferences, media appearances, open work-outs and its popular YouTube Embedded series. MMA fight fans love all of this as it helps them to get to know the fighters better, the history behind their rivalry and help them make better decisions when it comes to betting odds.
The Main Event at UFC 223 is what millions of fans want to see as UFC lightweight interim champion Tony Ferguson will fight Khabib Nurmagomedov. This fight was scheduled to take place in 2015, 2016 and 2017 and it never happened because Khabib pulled out twice and Ferguson once due to different injuries.
This time around both of them are confident of making it to the Octagon where they will fight for the UFC lightweight championship. UFC Superstar Conor McGregor is still the official lightweight champion but since he has not defended the belt, the UFC has decided to award the belt to the winner of the Ferguson vs. Nurmagomedov.
UFC – Ultimate Fighting Championship
Conor McGregor Expected To Be At UFC 223
There are rumours going around that Conor McGregor will be present at UFC 223. One reason for this is because his close friend and training partner Artem Lobov is scheduled to fight on the undercard against Alex Caceres. Lobov had earlier stated that although McGregor has a very busy schedule, he would not be surprised if he showed up in Brooklyn.
UFC President Dana White expects McGregor to return to the Octagon in August or September and stated that he wants him to fight the winner of Ferguson vs. Nurmagomedov. UFC 223 is packed with a number of exciting fights including the co-main event which will see former UFC strawweight queen Joanna Jedrzejczyk look to reclaim her belt from current champion Rose Namajunas. Also on the main card are fights between Anthony Pettis vs. Michael Chiesa and Paul Felder vs. Al Iaquinta.