Premier League games to be shown live on TV at 3pm if season resumes after long-standing blackout lifted – The Sun

BROADCASTERS will be able to show Premier League games live at 3pm on Saturdays for the rest of the season – after Uefa removed a ban.

The likes of Sky and BT will now televise the previously banned weekend matches when the season resumes, possibly in July.

Clubs have always fought hard for the Saturday blackout because they feared it would hit attendances.

But with matches more than likely to go ahead behind closed doors, there was no bar restricting Uefa from lifting the ban.

With the Premier League set to lose £750million in TV money if the season is cancelled, it seems clear that this campaign will be concluded one way or another.

Scotland have also seen their ban lifted, meaning the likes of Celtic and Rangers can show their games at 3pm.

Many fans hope that by July, the coronavirus lockdown will have ended so matches can be seen in pubs, providing a huge boost to that struggling industry.

A Uefa statement read: “Taking into account the current exceptional circumstances, Uefa has lifted the ‘blocked hours’ protection granted to the Uefa Member Associations for England and Scotland for the remainder of the 2019/20 football season, following requests from the relevant National Associations as a result of measures taken in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Meanwhile, the Premier League has admitted it will only start playing games again when completely safe to do so.

The Premier League tweeted: "The Premier League’s overriding priority is to aid the health and wellbeing of the nation and our communities. The 2019/20 season will only return when it is safe and appropriate to do so."

The Premier League and EFL have both put off bringing football back in May, as originally planned.

But due to the financial implications and the likelihood that Uefa would expel any clubs whose leagues have cancelled their seasons from competing in next seasons Champions League and Europa League, football chiefs will now press ahead with getting games played in July.


There could even be a World Cup finals style intensive programme to get all the games played.

That would still be a mammoth task as around 180 matches need to be played in the Premier League alone.

It would surely take at least nine weeks to get all those game concluded and finish the campaign.

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World News

Coronavirus can be transmitted between CATS, study in China finds

Coronavirus can be transmitted between CATS, study finds, after pet was found to be infected in Belgium

  • The study involved infecting a small number of cats with the coronavirus
  • These cats were then placed near virus-free cats, which then caught the virus
  • Discovery comes a week after the first reported case of a cat with coronavirus
  • Case last week was called ‘isolated’ showing how quickly knowledge is changing
  • No evidence has been found that animals can spread the virus to humans

Cats are capable of transmitting the coronavirus, a study has confirmed, days after a Belgium woman passed the disease on to her pet.

The study, undertaken by researches at the Harbin Veterinary Research Institute in China, concluded that cats are highly vulnerable to the virus.

The lab discovered that the animals can transmit the disease to other cats through respiratory droplets after it undertook experiments on a small number of them.

Cats are capable of transmitting the coronavirus between themselves, a study in China has found. Picture: A cat relaxes outside Moscow apartments being disinfected

The news comes a week after a case in which a Belgium woman was found to have passed on the coronavirus to her pet cat. Vets found the infection on her pet a week after the woman had come down with the illness.

At the time, Belgium virologist Steven van Gucht said it was an ‘isolated incident’, showing how quickly scientists are developing their knowledge of the new strain of coronavirus that was only discovered in Wuhan, China in December.

The study is yet to be peer-reviewed, the process in which studies are evaluated to determine their credibility, although experts have said the findings are legitimate and credible.

The study was done by administering a few cats with a high dosage of the disease. Cats which weren’t infected were then placed in adjacent cages to those which were. 

They weren’t able to touch, but were close enough that they also caught the disease, leading to the conclusion that it can spread between the animals through repository droplets. This process was repeated with another group.

The findings did not prove that the disease can be spread from cats to humans, virologists and infectious disease experts told The Guardian but they did warn that people with cats should be extra cautious, and remember the importance of washing their hands.

‘Surveillance for Sars-CoV-2 in cats should be considered as an adjunct to elimination of of Covid-19 in humans,’ the study concluded.

Prof Eric Fèvre, chair of veterinary infectious diseases at the University of Liverpool, said: ‘People should take usual precautions of hand washing when handling their pets, and avoid overly intimate contact, especially if sick with Covid. 

‘It is important to add that this says nothing about how the virus coming out of a cat may or may not be infectious to humans.’ 

While there is no proof that cats can spread the disease back to humans, pet owners have been advised to take extra precautions when petting their furry friends, and taking extra care when washing their hands (stock image)

Yvonne Chow Hau Yee, pictured, was the owner of a dog who died after contracting coronavirus in Hong Kong

Just last week, the first reported case of a cat catching the coronavirus was found when a woman, from the Belgium city of Liege in the French speaking part of the country, passed the disease on to her pet.

At the time, public statements coming out of Belgium from health officials were saying that this was an unusual incident. 

‘The cat lived with her owner, who started showing symptoms of the virus a week before the cat did,’ van Gucht said. 

‘We want to stress that this is an isolated case. Additionally, in this case, we are talking about a human-to-animal transmission, not the other way around.

‘There are no indications that this is common. The risk of animal-to-human transmission, is very small.’ 

Before the cat in Belgium, two dogs in Hong Kong were reportedly found to have caught the virus, however the study in china found that dogs, chickens, pigs and ducks were less likely than cats to catch the infection.

Yesterday, the global confirmed cases of the coronavirus reached 1 million, with over 52,000 deaths. The cases have  doubled in the last week.

On 2 April, the global number of confirmed coronavirus cases exceed 1 million, with over 52,000 deaths

Coronavirus cases across the world have doubled in a week

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Should face masks be worn in public?

As coronavirus continues, ‘masks for all’ movement grows

#Masks4All founder and University of San Francisco research scientist Jeremy Howard argues everyone should wear masks when they go out.

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The World Health Organization and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have said that face masks should be reserved for health care workers, the sick and people caring for them. However, now more health officials are considering if the public should be wearing them too.

As of Thursday, there were more than 237,000 coronavirus cases in the U.S., and more than 5,718 deaths. And as the number rises, doctors and health officials are considering expanding guidelines surrounding the usage of face masks.

The White House, with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is expected to announce a new policy, that would advise Americans to wear cloth masks in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID, 19, according to a federal official familiar with the policy, as first reported by Statnews.

More Americans are making their own face masks amid shortages. (AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky)

While masks are not considered an effective form for preventing someone from contracting COVID-19, wearing one may potentially prevent asymptomatic patients from spreading the virus. Americans have started making at-home versions of masks using fabric or bandanas to help prevent the spread of the disease with the ongoing shortage of medical masks, including N95 respirators and loose-fitting surgical masks.


Here’s where major health officials, agencies and leaders stand on whether or not the public should wear face masks:

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The CDC says on its website: “If you are sick you should wear a facemask, if available when you are around other people (including before you enter a healthcare provider’s office). If you are caring for others: If the person who is sick is not able to wear a facemask (for example, because it causes trouble breathing), then as their caregiver, you should wear a facemask when in the same room with them. During a public health emergency, facemasks may be reserved for healthcare workers. You may need to improvise a facemask using a scarf or bandana.”

The World Health Organization

The organization says on its website: “If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with the suspected 2019-nCoV infection.”

WHO advises wearing a mask if you are coughing or sneezing and says: “Masks are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water. If you wear a mask, then you must know how to use it and dispose of it properly.”

Former commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Scott Gottlieb, the former commissioner of the FDA, co-wrote a report saying “everyone, including people without symptoms, should be encouraged to wear nonmedical fabric face masks while in public.”

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said on Tuesday that the White House Coronavirus Task Force is actively discussing the potential to expand guidance on face masks, though health care workers are still the priority amid the ongoing shortage of personal protective equipment.

United States Surgeon General Jerome Adams 

Surgeon General Jerome Adams initially advised against the general public wearing face masks stating that they are "not effective in preventing the general public from catching coronavirus." However, on Wednesday he asked the CDC to reconsider.

The Trump Administration

President Trump on Wednesday, when asked if people should be wearing face masks, said it wouldn't hurt, and that a scarf would be suitable if wearing them en masse took away from the supply needed by health care workers.

Social Media

The campaign #Masks4All on social media, started by the University of San Francisco research scientist Jeremy Howard, and a member of the World Economic Forum's Global AI Council, encourages people to make their own face masks at home so that medical workers have access to personal protective equipment.


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Beauty and Fashion

I Could Never Get Curls to Hold Until I Tried This Indie Brand's Texturizing Hairspray

When I say my hair is stubborn, I mean it really has a life of its own. One time, when I tried to get ombré done to my otherwise completely untouched, unprocessed hair, it took five hours to get any sort of color to stick to just the ends (hence why I’ve never colored it again). When it comes to heat styling, I have the worst luck with getting my hairstyle to hold for more than a day; that’s with picture-perfect conditions — no humidity, no rain, and sleeping in a satin head wrap to try to preserve its look overnight. My curls drop every time.

I would also say I’m picky when it comes to how my hair products feel. Theoretically I could probably get my waves to last a little bit longer if I wanted to load up on the hairspray, but I despise the stiff, knotty mess it creates.

Hairstylists have told me this is because my hair is super fine and healthy (punished for having good hair habits?). But needless to say, when a product promises to hold my style in place, I’m more than game to try it because, well, I’m desperate. Enter: Eva NYC Shapeshifter Texturizing Hairspray ($12).

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Love Island’s Malin Andersson uses incredible £2 hair mask to combat psoriasis

Even glamorous TV stars can suffer problems with their skin. Malin Andersson has bravely revealed she’s struggled with psoriasis on her scalp since she was 22, and notes stress as a main factor.

Malin, now 26, has clearly learned a thing or two about keeping the flakes at bay. And one healthy scalp essential she’s just shared with her fans is Palmer's Coconut Oil Deep Conditioning Protein Pack, £2.09 here.

  • Stacey Solomon shares ‘mum-approved’ 3-step beauty regime featuring £8.95 essential

In a video posted to her Instagram Stories, the Love Islander can be seen looking relaxed in a matching loungewear set while her mask-coated hair is pulled back in a low bun.

“Palmer’s coconut hair mask is in – combat this psoriasis,” she captioned the short video.

The mask contains raw and natural ingredients like coconut and monoi oils, and is meant to be a weekly intensive treatment to repair dry, damaged lengths. However, coconut oil is often hailed as a hero ingredient by some psoriasis sufferers, as not only does it moisturise the area, it also helps loosen the thick clumps of dandruff so they get lifted off the scalp and skin.

In her OK! Mental health column this week, Malin says her psoriasis battle started with “uncomfortable itchiness” in her ears and scalp, and later turned into “thick and clumpy” looking dandruff – that often caused people to stare.

When she notices it appearing on her scalp, she now uses it as a warning sign to tell her to slow down and take care of herself.

What is psoriasis?

*It’s caused by an overproduction of skin cells

“Skin cells are normally made and replaced every three to four weeks, but in psoriasis this process only takes about three to seven days,” says GP Dr Roger Henderson. “The resulting build-up of skin cells is what creates the patches associated with psoriasis.”

*It’s not contagious

“A common misconception is that psoriasis is contagious. Although symptoms show up on the skin, it is thought that psoriasis involves an immune response, possibly caused by both genetic and environmental triggers,” Dr Henderson says.

*Anyone can be affected

“Psoriasis can affect men and women equally and can start at any age. However, it most often develops in adults under 35 years old,” adds Dr Henderson.

*There are a whole range of common triggers

“Well known psoriasis triggers include smoking, alcohol, skin trauma, hormonal changes and obesity. Psoriasis can be exacerbated by cold weather and stress,” says Dr Henderson.

*Moisturising can help to keep symptoms under control

“Unfortunately, there’s no known lasting cure for psoriasis but stress management and a good, consistent skincare routine can help to keep your symptoms under control and reduce itching and scaling. For skin, I’d recommend using Diomed Dry Skin Emollient, £7 here , generously and regularly,’ Dr Henderson advises.

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World News

Dog lover lucky to be alive after scratch from pet turns into sepsis

Dog lover, 50, is lucky to be alive after a scratch from his excitable pet Penny turns into sepsis that nearly costs him his arm

  • Jon Lewthwaite, 50, developed sepsis after dog Penny left a scratch on his arm The father-of-seven nearly lost his arm because of the infection it had caused
  • The Scottish IT manager, who lives with his family in Swindon, underwent five operations on his arm including emergency surgery after kidney problems
  • He says he forgives ‘best friend’ Penny the Cavachon and gave her a ‘cuddle’ when he returned from hospital 

A father-of-seven nearly lost his arm after his dog scratched him and caused a potentially deadly sepsis infection.

Jon Lewthwaite, 50, was playing with his children and their dog, three-year-old Penny, when she left a small scratch on his arm.

The scratch nearly cost him his life, with doctors performing emergency surgery on his infected arm within days of the cut.

Jon, an IT manager, originally from Thurso, Scotland, and now living in Swindon, decided to have his arm looked at after it began to swell. 

Jon Lewthwaite, 50, was told he is lucky to be alive after a scratch from his dog Penny turned into a serious case of sepsis

The IT manager, living in Swindon, was in hospital for three weeks and had five operations

He was urgently admitted to hospital and began losing function in his kidneys as the pain in his arm became agonising.

He is now regaining the use of or his arm after three weeks in hospital and five operations, but says he and Cavachon Penny are still best friends.

He said: ‘One day my dog Penny got too excited, jumped up to hug me, I put my arm around her to scoop her and her paw scratched me on the left arm.

‘I thought nothing of it, it’s a little dog scratch, it happens, so I carried on.

‘The next day I realised my arm started to swell and after speaking to my partner we decided to get it checked out.

‘We were at the hospital, discussing dinner plans, we weren’t expecting what was going to happen. When the doctors told me it was caused by a scratch I couldn’t believe it.

‘It’s easy enough to accept there was an infection but realising it was making me sick was something we couldn’t see coming.

‘It was a bit of a shock and my other half was incredibly worried.

‘It wasn’t until after I got discharged I had time to think about it and thought “what just happened”.

‘Best friend’ Penny (pictured, right) has been forgiven by her owner for the scratch and he revealed that he gave his Cavachon a ‘cuddle’ once he was discharged from hospital

‘Penny was definitely missing me and the first thing she did when I got home was jump up for a cuddle. We are best friends.

‘Of course I forgave her. It wasn’t a deliberate act on her part, we still love cuddling together in the couch.’

The father-of-seven went to Accident and Emergency when the swelling in his arm became concerning and while waiting to be seen his temperature jumped.

He was quickly admitted after tests showed his kidney function was starting to fail, which is a clear sign of sepsis.

‘My resting heart rate was 125 and my temperature 38.3,’ he said. ‘I had a very badly swollen arm that began to hurt.

‘I was in agony, I felt like someone was trying to stomp on my arm – my symptoms were getting worse very quickly.’

The swelling in his arm began to cut off his blood supply and he was diagnosed with compartment syndrome, which is common in athletes.

Surgeons at the Royal United Hospital, Bath, cleared the infection by opening up his arm and leaving the wound open.

Lewthwaite had two skin grafts on the arm and two more surgeries before returning home

He underwent two partial-thickness skin grafts and two further surgeries before being discharged.

He said: ‘There was a large infection that had gone beyond the skin, to some of the muscle. They had to wash it all out and leave it open.

‘Although it’s pretty much healed, I still got a problem with the tendon, and still learning how to use it.

‘It will come back but it will take months – I can’t use it for anything right now.

‘It was fortunate that the time I went to A&E they were able to see me so quickly, identify the infection and immediately give me antibiotics.’

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TV and Movies

How Many Avengers Will Be in the MCU's 'Deadpool 3': Who Is Joining Ryan Reynolds' Merc With a Mouth?

Ryan Reynold’s Merc with a Mouth received two R-Rated installments under Fox prior to the Fox/Disney merger, which placed the X-Men, Deadpool, and the Fantastic Four in Kevin Feige’s hands. So, what’s going to happen now that Deadpool is part of the ever-expanding Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU)?

Multiple questions have surfaced surrounding Deadpool: will he still be as brash and as brazen as he was in the prior two installments? Will his comedy still lean in the “for mature audiences only” direction? Or, will the character to be sanitized to fit with Disney’s family-friendly films? And, if Deadpool teams up with existing Avengers, who will he team up with? Which characters could work alongside Deadpool, without changing their ways or detracting from Deadpool’s unique (to say the least) appeal? 

Recent rumors suggest that Marvel Studios may be planning to bring a handful of Avengers into Deadpool’s first installment as part of the MCU. And, the choices should mesh narratively (and in terms of the presumable character dynamics). So, let’s dive in. 

Insider reports suggest that 3 Avengers may appear in ‘Deadpool 3’

According to We Got This Covered (WGTC), Marvel Studios may bring a few Avengers into Deadpool 3 to ease the character’s transition into the landscape. Relying on the same sources who suggested Marvel had plans to bring Daredevil into the MCU prior to Daniel RPK’s corroboration, WGTC reported that three Avengers are on the studio’s radar. 

Allegedly, the studio would likely to include or or more of the following existing heroes: Spider-Man, Nick Fury, and/or Sam Wilson’s Captain America. So, why do these interactions seem more appropriate than others; it comes down to fan service, compatible dynamics, and the history surrounding the source material.

Why Spider-Man, Nick Fury, and Sam Wilson for ‘Deadpool 3?’

As for Spider-Man, it goes without saying that the Merc with a Mouth’s suit was inspired by the web-slinger’s, and the two boast quite the complex history — often fighting against one another, but coming to save each other when push comes to shove. 

With the Merc’s tendency to break the fourth wall, the number of jokes available about the physical similarities (yet personality discrepancies) between Deadpool and Spidey are endless; one’s your friendly neighborhood hero who is out to do what is best, while the other is a bit of a self-serving antihero. 

As for Nick Fury, who better to introduce a new hero to the team? Who better to see if Deadpool has the potential to fight alongside the Avengers? Who better to feel out the Merc than the man who assembled the OG team? 

And while Sam Wilson’s Falcon may seem out of place, he can easily be the guy assigned to keep the Merc on track — to keep his motives aligned with the good of all humankind. So, here’s to hoping all three avengers receive a moment in the spotlight in Deadpool’s next outing. 

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World News

Pregnant inmates could be released from jails amid coronavirus

Pregnant inmates could be released from jails to protect their unborn babies from coronavirus as cases in prisons surge to 65

  • The announcement has come following mounting pressure from campaigners 
  • As of 5pm on Monday, 65 inmates had tested positive for the virus in 23 prisons
  • First death – convicted paedophile Edwin Hillier, was confirmed on March 22 
  • Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

Prison governors will be able to grant release on temporary licence to women who are expecting behind bars as long as they do not pose a high risk of harm to the public.

Decisions will be made subject to them passing risk assessments and once suitable accommodation is found. 

Mothers who are behind bars with their children who pass the same checks can also be released.

The announcement follows mounting pressure from campaigners urging Justice Secretary Robert Buckland to release prisoners in England and Wales during the pandemic.

As of 5pm on Monday, 65 inmates had tested positive for coronavirus in 23 different prisons.

On Tuesday the Ministry of Justice confirmed that visitors would no longer be allowed to enter the establishments in an effort to keep staff, inmates and families safe

Justice Secretary Robert Buckland leaves the Cabinet Office, London, following a meeting of the Government’s emergency committee Cobra to discuss coronavirus earlier this month

The first death – convicted paedophile Edwin Hillier, who was serving his sentence at HMP Littlehey in Cambridgeshire – was confirmed on March 22.

Pregnant women are considered by the Government as being in the ‘at risk’ category of those who could be in most danger if they contract the virus, alongside people with underlying health conditions or those aged 70 and over.

There are currently 35 pregnant prisoners and 34 inmates in mother and baby units across 12 women prisons in England.

The inmates in question are considered ‘low risk’ to the public but will be subject to licence conditions like a requirement to stay at home and wear an electronic tag where appropriate.

‘They can be immediately recalled to prison for breaching these conditions or committing further offences’, the MoJ added.

The news comes as Northern Ireland signalled it would let out more than 10% of those behind bars and emergency powers allowing ministers to release prisoners from jail early were being considered in Scotland.

Jails in England and Wales were put on immediate lockdown last week with all visits cancelled.

And transfers for inmates between prisons are now only being allowed in ‘exceptional cases’.

Edwin Hillier (left), 84, from Hertfordshire, was one of the country’s oldest inmates at HMP Prison Littlehey (right) in Cambridgeshire. He was the first UK prisoner to die of coronavirus

Minister are also considering plans to turn some military barracks into temporary prisons in a bid to ease overcrowding in jails but no decisions have yet been made, the PA news agency understands.

Staff numbers in prisons are already stretched, with some 3,500 employees – representing about a tenth of the workforce – currently in self-isolation due to Covid-19.

Some 14 prison staff have tested positive in eight prisons, as well as four prison escort and custody services staff.

Mr Buckland said: ‘We have already taken extraordinary measures to protect prisoners and the public over the last few weeks, but it’s clear now that we must temporarily release pregnant women and those with small babies with them inside prison.

‘Governors can now temporarily release pregnant prisoners so that they can stay at home and reduce social contact like all other expectant mothers have been advised to do.’

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Mourinho MUST be given full season in charge to turn Tottenham around despite calls for boss to be sacked, says Berbatov – The Sun

JOSE MOURINHO must be given a full season in charge to turn Tottenham around despite calls for him to be sacked, Dimitar Berbatov has urged.

The Spurs boss is already under huge pressure from fans and pundits after being knocked out of all cup competitions this season.

He also faces a battle to get the North Londoners into the Champions League spots, currently lying down in eighth place.

But Berbatov believes Mourinho – who has been in charge for just four-months – must be handed more time to get his ideas across.

He also reckons the forced Premier League break due to the coronavirus outbreak will give time to change his tactics and get stars back from injury, such as Harry Kane.

The ex-Tottenham star – a Betfair Ambassador – said: “Mourinho definitely deserves a full season in charge.

“He’s been at Tottenham for less than four months and in that time his team has been hit with injuries to key players.

“They were poor against Leipzig, completely outplayed, but are people seriously saying he should be sacked?

“There’s no need to panic. It’s going to be a long journey for Spurs under him.

“The suspension of the Premier League means Mourinho has time to think over strategies and give players time to get back from injury.

“He’s going through a difficult period but that can change with a single result. In the end it depends on the players.

“It doesn’t matter how loud you yell on the touchline, sometimes nobody can hear you on the pitch.”

Berbatov also believes it could be time for Spurs captain Kane to rule with his head rather than his heart and quit Spurs.

The England captain, 26, has not won a trophy at Tottenham since breaking through from their academy ten-years-ago.

And the Bulgarian reckons it could be time for him to make a similar move he did when quitting White Hart Lane for Manchester United in 2008.

He said: “If you’re at a club where you haven’t won anything then you have to decide whether the most important thing is to help them succeed.

“Or you have to decide to go somewhere you are more likely to win medals.

“For Kane it’s very difficult because he’s a Spurs fan. There’s speculation that Kane might benefit from a change of club.

“As somebody who made a big move, I can tell that only the player knows what his priorities are.”

Meanwhile, Berbatov thinks United have benefited from giving Ole Gunnar Solskjaer time to turn around the club.

And he also picked out January signing Bruno Fernandes, along with Harry Maguire who have impressed him the most.

He added: “Ole is benefitting from being given time to experiment and develop young players and the club are starting to reap the rewards.

“They are on a great run. I’ve talked about the impact of Fernandes but United have kept nine clean sheets in their 11-game unbeaten run.

“They’re defending well. Maguire has really risen to the responsibility since he was made club captain.

“I expect Fernandes to do well but I’ve been really impressed by how quickly he’s integrated into the team.

“His teammates are looking for him with the ball because they know he can create magic.

“The signs are very promising for United with him in the side.”

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World News

Farmer 'may be first in world to be killed by UFO' after contracting mysterious illness following 'close encounter'

A FARMER may have become the first person in the world to be killed by a UFO, according to astonishing claims made in a new book.

Brazilian Luis Barroso Fernandes died from a mysterious illness after he claimed he was "zapped" by "small aliens" he said came out of a strange "disc".

Brit investigator Philip Mantle now believes Brazilian Luis Barroso Fernandes may be the first person to die following a close encounter with a UFO – and has published the bizarre claims for the first time in a new book.

Luis says he heard a strange buzzing sound and spotted the object in the sky a few kilometers outside the city of Quixadá, according to the book.

He later claimed that the disc landed 30 meters away from him and two small alien beings emerged, one holding some sort of "flashlight".
He said the "unknown entity" then zapped him and his donkey in the face, apparently leaving them both paralysed.

When he woke up he says he was several meters away, he felt dizzy, was trembling, had burn marks on his face, trouble breathing and an intense headache.

A cowboy found the shaken farmer and took him home to his wife who called in top doctors, who apparently could not diagnose his mysterious condition.

He was examined by Dr Antônio Moreira Magalhães, who listened to Fernandes's account and, although he did not believe in flying saucers at the time, did concede that something very serious happened to the farmer.

The doctor recorded all the information in the medical records and prescribed an anti-allergy drug, a tranquilizer and absolute rest for Luis following the alleged incident in 1973.

But Fernandes continued to feel ill, with severe pain throughout his body, burning eyes and the left side of his body was still red.

According to the book, a few days after the encounter his hair turned grey and he had lapses of memory.

Those around him claimed he was perfectly fit before the alleged incident but then his health rapidly deteriorated, and he began to regress mentally until he was like a child.

His relatives even took him to a psychiatric hospital in Fortaleza, in the São Geraldo neighborhood, where he was examined by 16 doctors – all of whom also failed to make an accurate diagnosis, the book claims.

Dr. Magalhães also began to follow the health of Fernandes and was able to verify his worsening medical condition and mental capacity.

Before his death in April 1993, Fernandes could only mutter the words: "Mom", "give" and "fear."

Two students, military personnel and a local radio broadcaster also reported seeing the UFO over the city on the same date.

Philip Mantle, a former director of investigations for the British UFO Research Association, has published the account in a new book UFO Contacts in Brazil.

He told The Sun: "Many people claim to have come into direct contact with a UFO and some even claim that it has hurt them as a result.

"A bruise here, a small cut there, but Luis Barroso Fernandes may be the first person ever killed after his encounter with a UFO."

The book author Thiago Luiz Ticchetti added: "Contact with a UFO is not common at all but when the UFO in question shoots a beam of light at you, a light that hits you full in the face is extremely rare.

"This is what happened to Luis Barroso Fernandes.

"The illnesses that followed his immediately after this encounter is bizarre to say the least and went undiagnosed by a number of different doctors.

"Did the beam of light that hit him cause these illnesses and eventually his death? We will probably never know but this is one of the most bizarre and rarest such close encounters on record, of that there is no doubt."

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