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Can Chelsea still challenge for the Premier League title despite their latest setback?

POSTED ON January 7th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

Chelsea FC seemed to have been having a better time of things recently in the Premier League than earlier in the season before their defeat to QPR this week.

They were third in the table with 38 points following Sunday’s 1-2 win over Everton, but are now fourth with 38 points. Chelsea had won four Premier League games in a row prior to the loss.

However despite this setback, could they still possibly challenge for the Premier League title?

Chelsea had seemed to be improving. Despite the upset of Chelsea fans over the sacking of Roberto Di Matteo and appointment of Rafa Benítez, their interim manager seems to have had a positive effect.

Roberto Di Matteo had won just one game in a run of eight. Could the managerial change help Chelsea have more of a chance to win the Premier League season? Chelsea seem to have benefited from Rafa Benítez changing their set-up. Roberto Di Matteo had the team playing a narrow 4-2-3-1, which meant Eden Hazard, Oscar and Juan Mata were crowding Fernando Torres’ area.

However, it seems that Rafa Benítez has been playing Eden Hazard, Victor Moses and Oscar in wider positions. The statistics seem to give evidence that this new set-up may be working despite the match on Wednesday.

Has this change also improved Fernando Torres?

The £50 million signing notoriously struggled with goal scoring after he joined Chelsea. He scored just one Premier League goal in his first season with Chelsea, and just six Premier League goals last season.

However, so far this season, he has scored seven Premier League goals.

I wrote a piece after the appointment of Rafa Benítez focusing around whether he could bring the best out if Fernando Torres. While things are still not going perfectly for Fernando Torres, he did not give his best performance ever against QPR, he does seem to have improved since the arrival of Rafa Benítez. They could also benefit from their signing of Demba Ba from Newcastle, who has scored 13 goals so far this season.

So, a sign that Chelsea could still challenge for the Premier League title despite their latest setback is that Chelsea’s goal scoring potential seems to be improving, one factor being Juan Mata scoring many goals.

Another reason why Chelsea could still challenge for the Premier League title is that they have a game in hand. However, they are 14 points behind Manchester United, is it too much of a difference in points to make up?

Furthermore, they face some potentially daunting fixtures towards the end of the campaign, including the current Premier League leaders Manchester United, and other teams including Tottenham, Swansea and Liverpool. However, we do not know what position they will be in by then for certain.

Chelsea have been having good Premier League results, despite the loss on Wednesday. They are in contention for the Premier League title. However, can they really manage to get higher up the Premier League table after the defeat to QPR?

Desktop PCs: dying breed or affordable temptation?

POSTED ON November 26th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

One wonderful thing about computers today is that they’ve developed to a point where consumers can pick and choose, not only among a variety of different machines, but also on a spectrum of prices.

Users who can’t afford the most high-end technology, for example, can pick machines that are affordably priced without compromising on quality. This is especially good news for students and young professionals. For those interested in basic gaming and design, it’s easy to find a low-end desktop PC to fit the bill. But the low-end PC is popular, not only among the young. A recent report from low-end gaming platform Steam showed that an increased number of people are using the software of less powerful machines.

One reason for this use of low-end PCs in a world of iPads and other hi-tech tablet computers is their affordability; in fact, younger and younger users now have access to gaming PCs that they can afford with their pocket money. Although the highest and most potent specs are still reserved for those with the cash to invest in them, even low-end PCs use the most common specs and functionalities in the market. Using the latest-generation technology, the biggest difference between low-end and high-end desktop PCs is speed.

In fact, most people who are in the market for a reasonably powerful desktop PC would opt for lower-end pricing, and they would not be wrong to do this. In addition to light gaming for the young generation, these PCs also handle internet surfing, email, word processing, record keeping, and even movies admirably enough.

Younger buyers can invest in low-end PCs that are sufficiently capable in terms of everyday functionality, including built-in connectivity, preloaded photo and video applications, DVD and CD writing capability, excellent sound and data storage.

The considerably higher price for greater performance speeds is simply not necessary, in most cases, for home use. Although businesses prefer more powerful and faster machines, the home PC user will be able to economically get away with a low-end model.

Computers have truly become a marvel of our society, with their increasing capabilities and speed; in the future, however, we have yet to see how the desktop PC will evolve.

London Bridge and Kings Cross: two great London office bases

POSTED ON November 19th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

Britain’s fast-growing media, tech and telecoms industries are set to spark big increases in demand for office space in London over the next two years, says a study by BNP Paribas.

So if you’re looking for a business base in the British capital, you’ll need to choose your area carefully.

You may not have considered London Bridge, a vibrant central district.  It’s one of the city’s oldest neighbourhoods, with myriad connections to the events that have formed London’s history.

The area, originally called the Pool of London, stretches from London Bridge itself to just past Tower Bridge, and offers you and your clients and colleagues an array of sights and experiences.

The area is also very well-connected. London Bridge Station is a major transport hub with mainline trains running across the south east. There are also overland links with Kings Cross and Blackfriars Stations and to the north.

The Docklands Light Railway also runs from the area, as do four London Underground lines.

The bus station is another major terminus, with services from all directions.

And there’s a local bike park and cycle lanes. Prefer to walk? The Thames Path and the Jubilee Walkway run through the area.

London Bridge is a business hub, and home to one of London’s 25 ‘Business Improvement Districts’. The area hosts a diverse range of enterprises, from international professional service firms to independent traders.

The neighbourhood was once known as London’s Larder thanks to all the food stored in warehouses here. Today you’ll find a range of eateries and dining opportunities for every pocket and taste, whether you’re entertaining clients or socialising with colleagues.

Try the gastropubs, cafes and smart bards of Bermondsey Street, the converted warehouses of Butlers Wharf now housing restaurants, the varied cuisines of Tooley Street or the waterside retreat of St Katharine’s Docks.

And with city landmarks like the Tower, London Dungeon, HMS Belfast and the Design Museum nearby, not to mention major attractions like the Tate Modern and the Globe Theatre within walking distance, there’s so much to enjoy in this part of London. Learn more about office space to let in London Bridge today.

Alternatively, Kings Cross, an area on the northern edge of central London, has undergone extensive regeneration since the mid-1990s. That process continues with projects like Kings Cross Central in the district’s north, one of the largest construction projects in Greater London in the first quarter of this century.

For the past five years, Kings Cross has been the terminus for the Eurostar rail link at St Pancras International, providing links to mainland Europe. London Kings Cross train station, opened 160 years ago, has suburban services, fast links to Peterborough and Cambridge, Leeds, Newcastle and Edinburgh. There are also extensive underground and bus links.

With Google signing up this year to have its UK base locally, office space in Kings Cross is in strong demand and there is a lot of business activity in the area.

And with nearby attractions ranging from the British Library to Camden Town Hall and the London Canal Museum, it’s not hard to see why. In fact, over the last decade, the hotels, residential accommodation, restaurants and other venues which have sprung up in the area have made it a cultural hub.

 

Pregnancy and you

POSTED ON November 12th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

There comes a time in most people’s lives when the idea of having a child is a very realistic and exciting possibility. There are some things to think about if you and your partner decide that now is the time for you to extend your family.

Symptoms of pregnancy

If you’re trying to have a baby, you’ll need to be aware of some of the signs of pregnancy. These include missed periods, swollen breasts and sickness. However, there are other symptoms that are commonly felt on a day to day basis.

Some examples of these are fatigue, tiredness and various aches and pains. Aching in the lower back is one symptom that occurs fairly frequently and early on, not long after conception. Sometimes, a dull ache can continue throughout your pregnancy. The sudden surge of hormones that your body experiences at this time can sometimes give rise to headaches as well.

Once you reach your second month of pregnancy, you may find yourself needing to urinate a lot more frequently than usual. The skin around your nipples may darken and you may suddenly become unusually partial to certain foods, or develop aversions to others which you had previously found quite enjoyable. Pickled goods are commonly foods that pregnant women often report a sudden penchant for.

What to do if you think you might be pregnant

 One thing that’s really important to think about when contemplating having a child is the situation you’re in and what your lifestyle is like at the moment. Are you financially stable enough to be able to welcome another life into your family? Do you have enough time to give a child the care and attention it requires, and if not, can you give up enough of what you are doing in order to make time?

 

As well as practicalities such as these, you’ll need to find out whether you are indeed pregnant. Initially, most people test for pregnancy at home with a home pregnancy test, usually after experiencing some of the symptoms above. These tests are relatively cheap, very convenient and easy to get hold of at most chemists and supermarkets. They yield pretty accurate results most of the time; you can always take two or three if you are unsure.

 

A positive test should always be followed up by a trip to the doctor for further checks. You’ll also be able to ask for advice from your GP about how best to ensure the health of your growing baby.

Artificial grass that’s a cut above the rest

POSTED ON November 6th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

The grass on the other side of the fence doesn’t always have to be greener – indeed if you go to Evergreens UK, in addition to the traditional green variety, you can take your pick from blue, red, black or even pink artificial grass.

As the country’s largest artificial grass company, Evergreens are leaders in their field: a highly regarded, independent family synthetic turf supplier whose roots – metaphorically speaking – go back over 25 years.

Quality is the watchword at Evergreens, and the company have built their excellent reputation on the basis of working exclusively with reliable yarn suppliers who share their sound ethical beliefs. At the same time, Evergreens consistently deliver an unrivalled level of customer service whilst offering outstanding value for money to their customers, many of them long-standing, in the UK and beyond.

Innovation lies behind the pioneering surfacing and landscaping company’s impeccable track record. For over two decades they’ve been continuously developing and introducing new artificial turf products throughout Europe.

During this time, the company have delivered thousands of projects within budget and on time, at premises ranging from sports stadiums to front gardens, from exhibition halls to bowling clubs, and from playgrounds to putting greens.

To anyone outside the trade, the vast array of artificial grass products on offer these days could appear frankly overwhelming. You could certainly be forgiven for not being able to distinguish your ‘Lazy Turf’ from your ‘Springfield Curl’ or your ‘Fresh’ from your ‘Wonder Yarn’! Fortunately, that’s where the ever-friendly, ever-professional Evergreens UK team comes in. They know their artificial grass products inside out, and will be able to recommend the most effective options for your project, however large or small it may be.

So whether you’re an engineering company looking for an experienced artificial surfacing partner for a landscaping project, the director of sports facility sourcing a new five-a-side pitch, or a householder who’s simply tired of trying to make hay from the fast-growing grass in your garden each summer, Evergreens will be able to suggest a practical, affordable synthetic solution.

One of the company’s best-known brands of artificial turf is the popular LazyLawn.  Their nationwide installation network comprises trained technical licensees who are authorised to install the product – meaning there’s very likely a knowledgeable installation expert not far from you. And just as Evergreens do, these local installers believe that customer service is paramount, providing a reliable, professional and safe service, which is backed by Evergreens at all times.

Another service for which Evergreens are renowned for is supplying the events and exhibition industry with synthetic surfaces, carpet and vinyl flooring. The company’s two state-of-the-art CAD cutting tables allow them to incorporate their client’s logos, or indeed any other designs, within the desired flooring or matting. This means that companies attending events can personalise their stand or venue in a unique way, whilst reinforcing their brand message.

All products and services produced and delivered by Evergreens are covered by genuine guarantees, affording customers ultimate peace of mind. Moreover, in these days of economic belt-tightening, the good news is that there are finance options which make it possible to spread the cost of a LazyLawn installation over a period of time.

So with top-class products, experienced and knowledgeable sales staff, trained installers nationwide and even finance options to help with budgeting, it’s safe to say that Evergreens have got the artificial surface business well covered.

Take better pictures with iPhone 5

POSTED ON October 30th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

Ever since mobile phones and smartphones developed increasingly sophisticated camera functionality, there’s been a tussle between people preferring to use their phone to take photographs or a standalone digital camera. While using a smartphone to take photos is undoubtedly convenient, not all phones on the marketplace are able to take high quality pictures with bright colours and without blurring or pixilation, and so many people still hold on to their trusted digital cameras to ensure that they’re able to capture high quality images for special occasions such as birthdays and graduation ceremonies.

The release of Apple’s latest smartphone, iPhone5, marks a new chapter in the development of camera functionality in the smartphone marketplace. So, what is it exactly that makes iPhone 5 a cut above the rest in terms of its camera offering? Well, for a start, the 8 megapixel camera will pretty much match any stand-alone digital camera in the market in terms of pixilation, providing you with clear and bright images every time. Available to purchase at Carphone Warehouse, iPhone 5 also has improved HDR capabilities. HDR stands for High Dynamic Range imaging, and the improved HDR of iPhone 5 means that the camera can shoot multiple exposures at the same time and combine them to create one shot that is vibrant and colourful while still remaining natural looking. The improved HRD capabilities of iPhone 5 are a huge upgrade from Apple’s previous models and work particularly well for landscape and cityscape scenes.

It has also been noted by early adopters of Apple’s latest iPhone model that the phone takes sharper pictures than ever before. While earlier models may take blurry photos at a distance, the software upgrade of iPhone 5 camera means that its users can take crystal clear photos every time.

It is not only the software of the camera that makes iPhone 5 a cut above the rest, but the capacity for editing photos on the phone itself. You can use the phone’s touch screen interface to crop photos, remove red eye and enhance colours as you see fit – all from iPhone5’s own interface, and without needing to download any specialist software to a computer.  With such improvements in smartphone camera technology, it’s no wonder that sales of digital cameras are falling year by year, down by almost a third in the last five years according to The Telegraph.

Are you ready to discard your digital camera and use your smartphone to take photos?

How to bag the best graduate jobs

POSTED ON October 19th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

Securing a place on a graduate trainee programme or a graduate role in a big company is nowadays almost as competitive a battleground as the Olympic Stadium. There simply aren’t enough roles open in the most desired companies to go around. So how can you make sure that you nudge ahead of the pack? Two words matter when it comes to bagging a top graduate job – forward planning. If you’re about to enter your final year at university, or are searching for a role after a summer job has ended, read on for our top tips to landing a top graduate role.

 GET INVOLVED: Companies like to hire well-rounded people and with competition for jobs fierce, it’s often the person who fits in best with the company culture who is offered the job.  Having held a position in a student organisation or been a regular participant in a group sport or activity is a good indication of your ability to get on with other people. Join up and get involved!

NETWORK: The deeper the relationships with your professional contacts run, the better your network will be. Forget superficial relationships and focus on the people who you have time for and who have time for you.  Reach out to one or two relevant alumni in your desired industry and ask for their advice.  Start building your network before you need it.

BE FLEXIBLE: Don’t be so determined to work for one particular company or industry that you miss out on other, possibly better opportunities that come along.  If you’re determined to work for Goldman Sachs, yet have had every application returned with a reject note, it’s time for a new approach. Keep your search broad and stay open-minded.  Have a look on a site like Jobsite to see the range of jobs available.

HAVE A USP: Who will notice you if you’re simply another graduate? Identify your brand before you apply for jobs. What makes you distinctive? Are you energetic and passionate? Do you have experience of growing up in different countries around the world? Let your personality come through your CV in one subtle but distinct way.

INTERN: Almost a third of jobs go to graduates who have done an internship or work experience placement in the company. It’s still one of the best ways in. Graduate schemes for big companies or institutions open to applications early – sometimes up to 10 months prior to the end of term. If there is a particular company that interests you, get on their careers website today to find out the opening and closing dates for their programme.

OPEN UP: Talk to your career advisor at college or university and enrol for every career fair that is relevant and within reach. Every university has relationships with local companies and industries and often get special access to graduate jobs and placement schemes. Take advantage of this great, and free, career advice.

WORK OUT: Before the interview date, practise your interview skills with an older, experienced person. This might be a parent or relative, or could be your alumni advisor or career advisor. Ask them to grill you and put you through your paces. The experience will help to focus your thinking, make you aware of your strengths and weaknesses and dissipate any nerves you might have before the main event.

Eye wonder… The benefits of laser eye surgery

POSTED ON October 9th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

Even if you’re lucky enough to have enjoyed perfect eyesight throughout your life, sight deterioration is a natural part of growing older. Happily, though, these days there are many easily-accessible remedies to correct it. The same goes for those of us with less than 20:20 vision due to assorted visual impairments – we can choose to wear glasses or contact lenses, or perhaps undergo laser eye surgery for permanent sight correction, alleviating the inconvenience of carrying around cases and cloths, or having to insert and remove fiddly lenses.

More than 100,000 people a year in the UK now opt for surgery, with around 85% of those over 18 already wearing glasses and lenses proving suitable candidates.

But is eye surgery appropriate for you? And if so, just what is involved? Where can you go for information on the host of questions you will undoubtedly want answered, such as how much does it cost, how long is the recovery process, and – of crucial importance to most people when they’re considering surgery – does it hurt?

Click on laser eye surgery review for extensive information about every aspect involved with the process: from how to choose a clinic, along with a step-by-step run down of what to expect during the actual procedure – including what it actually feels like – to links to external forums, where past patients discuss their own personal experiences. There’s also an interactive comparison of prices in your area – for in the same way as if you were buying say, a new computer, or considering cosmetic surgery, it pays to shop around. Not only do you want to be reassured on quality, nobody likes paying over the odds for a product they can get for a better price somewhere else. Similarly, if you’re unsure about the requisite level of competency offered, the site fills you in on the appropriate qualifications and affiliations a surgeon should display after their name, and recommends questions to ask about what you should expect from aftercare.

Perhaps the most surprising thing to learn about laser eye surgery is that the vast majority of patients state it’s almost totally pain-free. In addition, it is one of the safest elective surgical procedures around – not the mention one of the quickest, with the procedure lasting a matter of minutes. First offered to the public in the 1980s, both the technology and techniques have evolved drastically over the years, with laser eye surgery clinics and centres increasing in numbers and popularity. This makes the ability to choose the right practitioner even more imperative should you be considering such treatment for yourself.

So if you’re unhappy having to replace your glasses every year or two, or feel slightly queasy at the thought of wearing contact lenses, you might want to check out whether a surgical procedure is the way to go.

 

Check out eyesurgerycompare.co.uk. It could be that seeing is believing…

Moving house? Only one rule – plan, plan, plan

POSTED ON October 8th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

Perhaps you’ve been offered a fantastic new job in another city. Or you’re upgrading to a larger house with your expanding family. The reasons for moving home are often positive, but the event itself is frequently stressful. While you can expect some frenetic activity, moving home doesn’t need to be chaotic or nerve-wracking. Follow these rules to minimise the trauma:

Declutter

When it comes to packing, use moving house as an opportunity to sort out your possessions. Go through your wardrobe and remove anything that you haven’t worn for the past year – throw it out or donate it to a charity. Be brutal, not sentimental, and throw out old magazines, catalogues, books and old bills, receipts and contracts. If your furniture is worth less than it will cost to move it, throw it away or donate it to a charity. Buy a moving pack online – which will include boxes in a variety of sizes, as well as items like bubble wrap and sticky tape – and have it delivered to your door.

Organise your own removal

You can arrange your own removal just by hiring a man with a van. This is a good solution if you only have a few belongings. Make sure the driver has a good idea of how many bags and boxes you have so they only have to make one journey. Most importantly, protect yourself and your belongings by getting a recommendation for a man with van from somebody you know. Also, check that parking is available outside or close to the house you are moving from. It might be necessary to buy a parking ticket so check that out in advance.

Professional removal companies

Anybody with two bedrooms or more should consider calling in the professionals to help them move house. You can either pay a company to pack all your belongings for you – expensive but a great service if you work long hours and don’t have time to pack yourself – or buy removal boxes, pack yourself and get the experts to load and unload the boxes for you. Removal companies should be booked at least two weeks before you plan to move. To get the best deal for the service, shop around. You can use the comparison service at The House Removals Company website to get quotes from different companies.

Let the company know how much furniture you have, as well as roughly how many boxes and bags you will be moving. Instruct them on the time you want the team to arrive and give clear directions to your new property. Finally, check all your furniture will fit through the doors. If it doesn’t, find a solution before the removal company arrives or you’ll end up wasting lots of time trying to resolve the problem.

Above all, stay calm. Although moving house is considered one of the most stressful events of our lives, it’s also one of the most exciting. If your temper starts to fray, picture yourself in your beautiful new house and remember that you are tolerating just a few stressful days in exchange for years of bliss in your new pad.

 

Tips for playing online bingo

POSTED ON September 27th  - POSTED IN Advertorials

With many of us strapped for time in this increasingly busy world we live in, it’s no wonder we’re going online for activities like shopping and paying bills which once involved leaving the house. Bingo is no exception. If you’re new to the world of online bingo, while you’ll love all the fun and friendship that’s on offer, you may also find that there’s quite a lot take on board initially.

Thankfully, help is at hand with these top tips:

  • Choose your game carefully: Decide what you want from your online bingo experience before you get started. If you’re mainly aiming for frequent wins so you can continue playing, quieter gaming rooms often reduce competition and boost your chances, though the prize money may be lower. For that single big win, busier rooms with bigger jackpots could be your best bet.
  • Choose your site carefully, too: With so many bingo sites to choose from these days, it’s more important than ever to pick the one that’s right for you. Before committing, do some research by reading user reviews on a respected, independent website like Bingoport. Check out wagering requirements and bonus structures before you give up any of your hard-earned cash. You may want to try out a few sites before sticking with one or two.
  • Purchase bingo tickets sensibly: When you first enter your bingo room, see who else is online and make your ticket purchases accordingly. If your eye is on a jackpot in a busier room, you may want to increase your chances by buying more tickets.
  • Be sensible: When it comes to online bingo, fun is of course the name of the game, and it’s essential that you enjoy playing. But, equally, it’s also important that you bet sensibly. Set yourself a limit on how much you are prepared to spend, and stick to it. Equally, show grace when your fellow players win – just as you would want them to celebrate your own success.
  • Understand bonuses: New customers are often attracted to online bingo sites with bonuses as well as free games. A No Deposit Bingo Bonus offers you bonus cash but you won’t have to pay anything upfront. A Bingo Deposit Bonus asks you for a deposit but increases the amount to give you the bonus. Do your homework to bag the best deals.
  • Be a bingo freebie: At least initially, you may want to play for free, and many sites let you do this. Experience the game without spending a penny and get a feel for how it all works without risking any of your hard-earned cash. (For cash prizes, however, you’ll need to go for a paying game.)
  • Join communities: Traditional bingo halls are sociable places, and online bingo has retained that interaction between players. Discuss your successes and share tips. Your fellow bingo fans may also tell you where the best deals are to be found. The community can be a deal-breaker when it comes to choosing a site. Moderators make sure chat is fun, friendly and safe.

If you’re new to the game, make a beeline for Bingoport, Britain and Europe’s leading online bingo portal and one-stop-shop resource for everything related to the game.

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