European Football Stars Find Oasis in Bahrain Amid Saudi Shift

 - International - Aug 19 2023 SHARE ON:

The tides of international football are shifting, and Saudi Arabia stands as a focal point of this transformation. The Saudi Pro League has sent shockwaves through the world of football, attracting an array of high-profile European players with its hefty contracts and lavish fees. With iconic figures like Cristiano Ronaldo and Steven Gerrard leading the charge, Saudi clubs have secured some of the sport’s biggest names, seemingly poised to emerge as a major player on the global football stage. However, amidst this influx of talent, a surprising trend has emerged – many players are opting to call Bahrain, Saudi’s neighbour, home.

The mega deals are painting Saudi Arabia as a footballing Mecca, capturing the attention of fans and analysts worldwide. Headlined by Cristiano Ronaldo’s groundbreaking £173-million-a-year contract with Al Nassr, the league has witnessed a star-studded parade of talent. Names like Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kante, Ruben Neves, Kalidou Koulibaly, and Roberto Firmino have joined the ranks, turning the once-marginalised Saudi Pro League into a hotbed of action.

While the limelight has been captured by these jaw-dropping signings, an intriguing subplot is unfolding behind the scenes. It appears that not all players, despite signing lucrative deals, are entirely sold on the idea of making Saudi Arabia their permanent residence. A growing number of footballers and their families are opting to settle in Bahrain, a neighbouring nation with a significantly different lifestyle.

For many devout Muslim players, the shift to Saudi Arabia might not be a significant adjustment. However, the allure of Bahrain, with its more liberal lifestyle and relaxed regulations, is proving to be an enticing prospect. Unlike Saudi Arabia, Bahrain permits the consumption of alcohol and boasts a thriving nightlife. Luxurious bars, licensed restaurants, and upscale off-licences, such as ‘CUT,’ a Michelin-starred restaurant by Wolfgang Puck, offer a vibrant scene for players and their families to unwind.

Beyond the entertainment scene, Bahrain provides a wealth of amenities and attractions that appeal to the footballers’ discerning tastes. Shopping havens like the Bahrain World Trade Centre, Seef Mall, and Avenues cater to their lifestyle needs with a plethora of renowned brands. Popular residential areas like Amwaj Islands and East Riffa offer a comfortable and modern living environment, while the capital city of Manama is a mere stone’s throw away from Dammam, where Gerrard’s Al Ettifaq team is based.


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Mosta Scout Group’s Floating Raft Adventure Revived

 - Events - Aug 19 2023 SHARE ON:

In a triumphant return to adventure, a group of intrepid Scouts has rekindled the spirit of exploration as they set sail on a floating raft in the scenic bay of Xemxija.

After a gruelling nine-hour construction marathon, these 15- to 18-year-olds from the Mosta Scout Group have resurrected their annual maritime tradition, signalling a joyful end to a COVID-19 induced hiatus that had lasted since 2019.

With a spirit of camaraderie and an unquenchable thirst for adventure, these young scouts embarked on a remarkable journey. Their nautical escapade, once a cherished ritual, had been suspended due to the pandemic’s disruptive force and unfavourable weather conditions the previous year. However, the Scouts demonstrated their unwavering dedication by tackling the challenge head-on.

Armed with ropes, wood, tanks, and marine plywood, the Scouts embarked on the arduous process of assembling their floating haven. The culmination of their efforts saw the raft set sail around 4pm.

With the guidance of their Scout leader, Sean Bartolo, the group not only constructed a raft but also embarked on a journey of resilience and camaraderie. Bartolo proudly shared that the Scouts enjoyed a serene slumber on their buoyant abode as it gently rocked on the tranquil bay.

The floating camp is no stranger to adversity and evolution. Starting as a single raft in 2014, the concept gradually evolved into a double raft in 2015, only to face the challenges posed by tempestuous weather. Yet, this year, the determined Scouts have triumphed over setbacks and unforeseen circumstances, ushering in a new era of maritime exploration for the Mosta Scout Group.

Throughout the year, these scouts hone their skills, mastering knots and lashes that prove invaluable during their four-day escapade. The Mosta Scout Group, known for their affinity for the extraordinary, has previously embarked on peculiar undertakings like an abseiling marathon off Malta’s tallest bridge in 2013. And who could forget their annual superhero-themed abseil down the walls of Mater Dei in December?


Spilling The Wine: 5 Myths & Health Secrets

 - Health & Fitness - Aug 19 2023 SHARE ON:

The hidden stories behind those tantalising tales of reds, whites, and rosés working wonders for your well-being. Separating the facts from the fiction in the world of wine and its supposed health perks!

Myth 1: “A Glass a Day Keeps the Doctor Away!”

Hold your corkscrews, folks! While we’ve all heard that a daily glass of wine can be a ticket to good health, experts say otherwise. Sure, a moderate intake might have certain antioxidants and compounds, but that doesn’t give you a free pass to guzzle guilt-free. Overindulgence can lead to a plethora of problems, from liver issues to weight gain. So, remember, moderation is key!

Myth 2: “Red Wine is the Elixir of Longevity!”

Raise a glass to disappointment, as the fountain of youth isn’t found at the bottom of your Merlot. While red wine does contain resveratrol, a compound linked to heart health, don’t think it’s a shortcut to immortality. Other lifestyle factors, like a balanced diet and regular exercise, play a more significant role in your longevity. Sorry, wine lovers, but you can’t sip your way to eternal life.

Myth 3: “Wine Flushes Out Toxins!”

Hold up – wine as a detox elixir? Not so fast! This claim is nothing but a hangover waiting to happen. The liver, your body’s natural detoxifier, handles its job without needing a chardonnay assist. Drinking wine won’t magically cleanse your system; it’ll just add extra calories and, you guessed it, potential health risks!

Myth 4: “Wine Melts Away Pounds!”

Dreaming of shedding pounds with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc? Don’t bank on it. While studies suggest certain compounds in wine could have minimal effects on fat metabolism, the caloric content and the potential for increased appetite can easily undo any so-called “weight loss magic.” Ditch the wine diet – it’s a fad that’ll leave you feeling flat.

Myth 5: “A Glass Before Bed Promotes Better Sleep!”

Here’s a myth that’s been sipped around for years – that a nightcap can lull you into dreamland. But be warned: alcohol can actually disrupt your sleep patterns. That pre-slumber sip might knock you out initially, but you’re more likely to wake up in the middle of the night and experience poor sleep quality. Opt for a cup of herbal tea instead!

While a glass of vino can certainly add a touch of sophistication to your evenings, remember that moderation is key, and the health benefits might not be as magical as they seem.


The Loneliest Orca’ On The Planet Has Passed Away After 53 Years Of Captivity

 - International - Aug 19 2023 SHARE ON:

The world has bid farewell to a marine giant whose life was fraught with solitude and controversy.

Lolita, affectionately known as Tokitae, has passed away at the Miami Seaquarium, ending a tragic chapter that spanned 53 long years of captivity.

As news of her sudden illness and subsequent passing spread, a somber realisation washed over the hearts of activists, conservationists, and animal lovers alike – the loneliest orca on the planet had taken her final swim.

Captured in 1970 at just four years old, she was torn away from her pod and natural habitat in the Pacific Northwest.

As the star of controversial shows that drew millions of visitors, Lolita showcased a range of flips, jumps, and tricks. Over the years, her cramped tank at the Miami Seaquarium, which fell far short of the expansive ocean realm she was meant to inhabit, became a symbol of the dark side of the entertainment industry.

In the face of mounting criticism and campaigns for her release, Lolita’s fate was poised for a potential turnaround. Activists were meticulously crafting a plan to repatriate her to her native waters, where she could reunite with her long-lost pod and live out her twilight years in the vast expanse of her ocean home

The promise of her homecoming was on the horizon, yet, fate had other plans.


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