In what will be his first hit-out of the year, Luke has made it clear he wants big minutes on the park in Palmerston North and won’t be heading to the bench without a fight.”I’m going to tell the trainers to go away if they come to get me,” Luke declared this week.”But I want to be effective too, so obviously if I am not then ‘Mooks’ (coach Stephen Kearney) will send the message out and bring me off.”Despite entering his 11th season in the NRL Telstra Premiership, Luke, who turns 30 in May, said he had a genuine desire to be an 80-minute hooker this season.It comes after a 2016 campaign which saw the 208-game veteran battle through niggling calf and knee injuries, as well as a sluggish start to the season caused by off-season weight gain.”Most definitely [I want to play 80 minutes this year], but I have got great hookers behind me biting at my heels and that is what’s making this a competitive group,” he said.”I feel better [than last year], it was everything you know, it wasn’t just the calf, it was my weight, the knees trying to hold up the fat weight.”Everything has come good… [I’ve lost] about four kilos, that’s where I was before I came [to the Warriors], I am pretty happy and the staff are happy too.”Everything is going well so far, obviously I have to try and perform on the field, that’s where it counts.”Coach Stephen Kearney said he expected to leave his key players on the park for the majority of the match against the Gold Coast in preparation for the Round 1, and welcomed the return of both Luke and former captain Simon Mannering to the line-up this weekend.”We have Round 1 in our sights and focus, so for me it will be pretty much close to the game with interchanges and playing times,” Kearney said.”With Simon you just know that regardless of situation he will deliver.”Issac had a slight calf strain so he was rested last week. It will be good to get a few experienced guys out there.”There were some parts of the game last week (a 30-18 loss to the Storm) that looked like the way we have trained all pre-season, which was pleasing, but it’s about improving that again.”
As is already known, Madrid began the works of the Bernabéu in the summer, for which it requested a year ago a bank loan of 575 million euros with a fixed interest of 2.5% and without the need to present property guarantees, given that until on July 30, 2023 (with the work already finished) you will not have to start paying for Madrid. Its first installment will be 29.5 million euros per year, and so on until 2049. The term initially set to finish the works is August 2022, after which there are four months left to complete the exterior urbanization of the stadium (there will be a garden for public use where the old Corner of the Bernabéu used to be).Among the novelties that the Bernabéu will present when it is finished is an electronic scoreboard with the latest cutting-edge technology that will occupy the entire diameter of the field as well as the placement of numerous locations for people with disabilities. The stands on the east side will also be expanded. The VIP area will also be renovated and modernized with the implementation of 2,100 new seats.FCC already made the WandaFCC won the auction to take over the works of the Bernabéu for its experience in soccer stadiums, with proven success. This is the construction company that made the Wanda Metropolitano, praised by UEFA in the last evaluation of its facilities. FCC was also in charge of building the Allianz Arena, Bayern’s brand-new current stadium that supplied the old Munich Olympian, as well as the Warsaw and Gdansk National stadiums, which attracted attention at the 2012 European Championship. Despite the fact that work activity has slowed down considerably in our country as a result of the declaration of the state of alarm due to the coronavirus, the works of the Bernabéu are continuing as yesterday the few people who were able to approach by the outskirts of the Coliseum of the Paseo de La Castellana. The reason is simple, as a source from the white club explained to AS yesterday: “The works in Spain have not been closed.” Logically, the club has instructed FCC, the construction company that is carrying out the ambitious remodeling of the stadium, to respect the safety protocols in order to mitigate as much as possible the risks of contagion.At this time, the works of the Bernabéu are at a strategically important moment, given that the four giant cranes, 90 meters high each, located at the four cardinal points of the stadium, are completing the dismantling of the current visor, apart from remove the B and C towers that face the main facade. In this way, the ground is prepared to build and place the final retractable cover, which It will allow the Bernabéu to be fully covered at the end of the works on rainy days or excessive heat. Given that a game has not been played in the white feud since March 1 (due to the Classic) and as a result of the momentary suspension of competitions, FCC and Madrid agree to take advantage of the obligatory stoppage to ensure that everything goes to a higher rate to shorten deadlines if necessary.