Coronavirus

Manchester City legend Kun Aguero to play backup role at Barcelona

Manchester City legend Sergio Aguero will play a backup role at Barcelona next term. The striker spent 11 trophy-laden years in Manchester, winning the Premier League five times and the FA Cup once. He is fourth in the all-time Premier League goalscoring charts with 184 strikes in 275 appearances. The ‘perfect’ combined England and Italy Euro 2020 XI Despite his incredible record, Barca have warned Aguero that he could spend a significant amount of time on the bench next season. That’s according to Spanish outlet AS (via Daily Mail), who claim that the Argentinian has already accepted the role. Barca are worried about Aguero’s fitness after he was limited to 12 top flight appearances in 2020/21. He suffered with a knee injury at the start of the campaign, a hamstring problem in November an...

Nigeria records 186 new coronavirus cases

The Nigeria Centre for Diseases Control (NCDC) has registered 186 new cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) infections from three states. The NCDC said this on its official website on Saturday morning. Newsmen report that the figure represents an increase from the 146 cases recorded on Thursday and 110 cases posted on Wednesday. It said 186 additional cases were reported from three states as of July 9. The agency noted that Lagos had the highest number of cases, which was 175, while Rivers recorded eight and Gombe had three cases. According to NCDC, compilation of the newly infected cases showed that the country now has a total of 168,442 confirmed cases. The NCDC highlighted that the total of discharged cases stood at 164,323. The agency said it also discharged eight more people from isolation ...

Inside Track: How the Music Business Is Preparing to Return to the Office

Katovsky explains that BMG tested its return-to-work plan at its offices in Sydney, Australia, where COVID infection rates were low until recently. After surveying its global staff, Katovsky says that moving forward, the majority of BMG’s employees will be permitted to work from home two days per week. “We’re eager and excited to get back into the office, but we’re also pragmatic about that, and accept that we’ll have to make changes along the way,” he says. Meanwhile, a source says Sony Music has told its employees that, moving forward, the company plans to support more flexibility regarding working from home, and Triple 8 Management founder George Couri says the company’s employees, who are based in Nashville and Austin, Texas will have the option to work at home for part of the week. “A...

German football gets green light for fan return next season

Bundesliga clubs and other German sports venues will be allowed to welcome up to 25,000 spectators from next month, the city of Berlin said on Tuesday after a meeting of officials from Germany’s 16 states. Most matches in Germany’s top football league were played behind closed doors last season because of the Covid-19 virus. The new Bundesliga season starts on August 13 and with infection rates having fallen sharply, sports stadiums could be at 50 percent capacity, with the total number per match or event capped at 25,000. The only exception is reigning Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich, where up to 20,000 fans will be allowed into home games at the 75,000-capacity Allianz Arena because officials in Bavaria are allowing only 35 percent of capacity. The new rules apply until September 11 a...

Morrissey Describes Pandemic as “Con-vid”, Likens Government Restrictions to Slavery

Morrissey’s big mouth has struck again: In a new interview conducted by his nephew Sam Esty Rayner, the outspoken singer referred to the pandemic as “Con-vid” and compared government-imposed restrictions as akin to slavery. His comments came as part of a lengthy interview designed to promote his upcoming album, Bonfire of Teenagers. But Morrissey and Rayner dedicated much of the interview to lamenting about the state of Britain during the pandemic. “The bigger problem is that nobody can any longer agree with anyone else, and this is the main outcome of Con-vid,” Morrissey commented. “It has brought the worst out in people, and we weren’t ever in this together. We are deprived of seeing and hearing other people, and above all, you want to be with others who see and hear what you see and hea...

Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia suspends UAE flights

Saudi Arabia has suspended flights to three countries, including the neighbouring United Arab Emirates, to protect against a coronavirus variant, the interior ministry said Saturday. The move comes seven weeks after the oil-rich kingdom permitted fully immunised citizens to travel abroad, after a ban on foreign trips that lasted more than a year. The UAE, and especially Dubai, is a key leisure destination for Saudis. Flights to and from the UAE, alongside those to Ethiopia and Vietnam, will be suspended from Sunday, an interior ministry official said, quoted by the state news agency SPA. Saudi citizens and residents returning from these countries will be required to quarantine for 14 days, it added. Citizens would be banned “from travelling directly or indirectly, without obtaining prior p...

SBA Has Delivered $1 Billion in Shuttered Venue Grants

The SBA’s grant website states that roughly 27% of the more than 14,600 applications are currently under review, with another 21% awaiting consideration. About 1,600 applicants will be receiving a notice to fix technical corrections from the SBA as well. According to an SVOG stakeholder, these are entities that meet the criteria for approval, but something in their application needs to be fixed. The SBA is working on a process to send emails to those that need technical corrections and show them on the portal how to address them. Also in the works is an appeals process for those who have been denied but believe they are still eligible for the grant. While details of the process are still being worked out, it is estimated that businesses will have around two weeks t...

Tanzania to spend $470 million on vaccines, coronavirus-damaged economy

Tanzania will spend $470 million buying vaccines and supporting economic sectors hit hard by the coronavirus, President Samia Suluhu Hassan said on Monday. Since Hassan took office after the death of then-president John Magufuli in March, the government has changed tack from playing down the pandemic to calling for social distancing and emphasising mask wearing in public. Issuing the first data on infections since May 2020, Hassan said there were more than 100 Covid-19 patients in Tanzania as of last Saturday, with 70 of them being provided oxygen. Half of the cash will be spent on vaccines, protective gear and other medical equipment, Hassan said, with the rest going to stimulate sectors that are reeling from the crisis. She did not give details about the sectors but tourism, one of the t...

Event Designer Bobby Garza In Austin, In a Pandemic: Cash-Poor Venues Have Decisions to Make

When the concert business shut down in March 2020, Bobby Garza abruptly shifted from putting on live events to tearing them down — his company, Austin-based Forefront Networks, had to cancel the California food-and-music festival Yountville Live later that month. In early April, his life changed even more dramatically: Forefront furloughed 30 percent of its staff, including him. As part of Billboard‘s efforts to best cover the coronavirus pandemic and its impacts on the music industry, we will be speaking with Garza, a 44-year-old former Forefront creative team leader who used to be general manager of festival producer Transmission Events, every other week to chronicle his experience throughout the crisis. As of early January, he is now vice president of programs and community ...

Malawi runs out of coronavirus vaccines as second jabs due

Delays in coronavirus vaccine shipments to Malawi have caused health facilities to run out of doses as hundreds are due to receive a second shot, the health minister said Saturday. The southern African country has so far received 300 000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine from the United Nations, 102 000 from the African Union and 50 000 donated by India. Inoculations started in April and the country was expecting a second UN shipment of 900 000 by the end of May, four weeks before the first vaccinated Malawians would be due a second dose. But Health Minister Khumbize Kandodo said that batch had been delayed by a recent surge in coronavirus cases in India, the world’s main AstraZeneca supplier, which forced the country to temporarily halt major vaccine exports to meet local demand. “The situ...

French, German leaders urge EU coordination on reopening borders

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron called on Friday for European Union countries to coordinate their COVID-19 border reopening policies and guard against new variants of the virus. Macron said EU countries must be careful not to allow new variants to spread, adding that the EU was watching developments in Britain, which has seen a steep rise in the weekly reported cases of the Delta variant. “Some countries have reopened their borders earlier for tourist industry reasons, but we must be careful not to re-import new variants,” he told a joint news conference with Merkel before a working dinner at the chancellery in Berlin. Merkel added: “We can’t act as if the coronavirus is over.” “Caution is still necessary so that we have a summer of many freedoms, if no...