St Johnsbury hospital leverages energy efficiency as prescription for saving $47,000

first_imgNortheastern Vermont Regional Hospital,At Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital (NVRH), energy efficiency supports NVRH’s mission to provide high quality healthcare services that are focused on community needs at the lowest cost consistent with excellent care. To increase savings and comfort for both patients and staff, NVRH and its team of design engineers collaborated with Efficiency Vermont on its latest project, a large-scale expansion and renovation that enhances 33,000 square feet of the facility.Located in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, NVRH is a community, nonprofit, acute care, and critical access hospital. NVRH has long recognized the role energy efficiency can play in helping achieve the patient care mission.‘It was really a no-brainer to upgrade our older, energy-inefficient equipment and lighting to newer, more efficient options,’ said Richard Degreenia, director of plant operations at NVRH. ‘We’re cutting energy costs so we’re better able to serve our community ‘ the patients who come here every day for the best medical care.’NVRH undertook its expansion to improve accessibility and workflow and also to create additional space for treatment rooms, including the hospital’s X-ray area and day-surgery unit. Expanded office space, nurses’ stations and waiting rooms are also now part of the hospital’s enhanced space.  Expansion typically means consuming more energy, but NVRH was able to make significant expansions without increasing energy costs. Working together, NVRH and Efficiency Vermont identified cost-effective energy solutions that would not only benefit the hospital financially, but also improve comfort for employees and patients. Adding a more efficient lighting design and upgrading the hospital heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system were at the crux of the work.All told, the lighting and HVAC measures help NVRH save 431,000 kWh annually, which translates to an estimated cost savings of more than $47,000.HVAC upgrades significantly contributed to those savings numbers. NVRH switched from using a constant-volume air system to a variable-air volume system, also called a VAV system. A VAV system offers two primary advantages: the fan capacity control allows the hospital to control fan speed, reducing energy consumed by fans, which can be a substantial part of the total cooling energy requirements of a building. Another advantage is more efficient temperature control.NVRH engages in ‘daylight harvesting,’ using sensors and controls to keep lights off when the natural illumination from skylights will provide sufficient light levels. NVRH also installed lighting monitors in public spaces, like lobbies. The monitors lower light levels in the absence of activity ‘ for example, when someone leaves a room, or area. This energy-smart approach to lighting was achieved by thinking about energy efficiency and incorporating ideas early on in the design process.”When a design team brings in Efficiency Vermont from the start, we’re able to work together to find the greatest energy savings at the lowest possible cost to the building owner,” said Sheryl Graves, energy consultant at Efficiency Vermont. “That’s because the planning stage is the most cost-effective time to incorporate efficiency. It’s a great feeling to support the design team’s vision for a building that will mean significantly lower overhead for the owners for years to come.”NVRH has worked with Efficiency Vermont since the organization’s inception in 2000, joining several Vermont hospitals that have taken the initiative to install energy-saving measures in partnership with the energy efficiency utility.After nearly a decade of energy efficiency work, NVRH’s Degreenia still has more projects on his mind, including a potential LED installation for the hospital building and parking lot lighting. Degreenia and his team have realized that continuous energy-efficient improvements provide a mechanism not only to achieve business goals, but to serve the patients and employees who come to NVRH every day.Efficiency Vermont was created by the Vermont Legislature and the Vermont Public Service Board to help all Vermonters reduce energy costs, strengthen the economy, and protect Vermont’s environment. Efficiency Vermont is currently operated by Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC), an independent organization under contract to the Vermont Public Service Board. VEIC is a Vermont-based nonprofit organization founded in 1986. For more information, contact Efficiency Vermont at 888-921-5990 or visit www.efficiencyvermont.com(link is external).last_img read more

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Terror on Brown Mountain

first_imgAudio interview with Brown Mountain Lights witness: Sometime around 7pm Thursday of last week I found myself sitting on the beat down bed of a dive hotel located in Boone, North Carolina. I was loading cameras into their bags and organizing some things I had just pulled out of the Blue Ridge Outdoors Subaru road-vehicle, which we use at the magazine for such adventures, and wondering why I had decided to go on a UFO hunt in the middle of the night all by myself. Of course, the sun was beginning to drop down behind the mountains and it’s always that initial shock of night that jolts the human psyche while mentally gearing up for any sort of outdoor adventure – especially venturing off into the woods in search of natural phenomenons all by your lonesome.I could get abducted, I thought to myself, and at the very least I’d go down as a legend. “Travel Writer Disappears at Brown Mountain on First Assignment” the headlines would read. But those thoughts had to be suppressed in order to get on with business, so loading the equipment up became first priority and I quickly made for the door.Now, just for a little backstory for those who haven’t heard: small glowing apparitions have been sighted from numerous viewpoints surrounding Brown Mountain for centuries. Some sources have even claimed the Native Americans had seen them even before land surveyors reportedly did in the 1700s. Scientists have tried to explain them, but no theory has ever been provided with proof. Native American spirits? Swamp gas? Mineral electricity produced by geological activity? People are still investigating them as I write. Nobody knows for sure, but I knew one thing: I wanted to get a look and see for myself what all the fuss was about.As I stepped out the back door of the hotel to hit the road and make tracks towards the backwoods, lightning flashed, followed by a comforting roll of thunder, followed by a few more flashes, intensifying in brightness and quantity as seconds passed. Great…Driving up the long, rugged road to Wiseman’s View Overlook the rain sputtered to a mellow drizzle and fog began to creep out of the woods. The drive was slow going and about as creepy as one could ask for on an October night, but the haunting vibe of the drive had livened my senses, as any dose of fear usually does, and I actually felt quite thrilled to be where I was at that very moment despite not being able to see anything and having no idea where I was in the middle of the woods…About 15 minutes later I had made it to the top and was surprised to see headlights behind me. Grateful or scared – I’m not really sure which it was – but definitely surprised, I pulled over thinking I could get a little window chat going and possibly a hiking partner. I rolled the window down just to watch the truck pass hurredly by. No dice. I reluctantly followed and met them in the parking lot.“What you want, bud,” the Southern drawl irritatedly came through the one-inch-cracked window as I stood outside the truck in the parking lot probably looking just like the exact psycho I feared running into myself. The guy clearly wanted nothing to do with me, which became more apparent when I realized there was a female in the car–one he was likely hoping to be spending some alone time with up there. Clicking on my trusty headlamp, I moved on and headed to the trail, partnerless.Let it be said that the trail to Wiseman’s View Overlook is not long. It’s quite short, in fact. But for a midwesterner on a stormy, foggy October night hiking in the pitch black, the eerie silence intermittently breached by strange noises that were definitely (probably not) bears hunting me down was enough to put me on edge. About five miles in (probably 50 yards) I reluctantly turned back.The midnight lovers were still in their car and in a last ditch effort to save this mission from failure, I bravely approached the vehicle once more to seek out hiking pals. In retrospect, this was a dumb idea. Retrospect hit me after five seconds of awkwardly lingering in the dark next to the truck as I called out to the vehicle’s passengers and they silently ignored me. Righty-o. Abort mission.Frustratedly driving back out on the main road foreign bends in highway and strange buildings I didn’t recognize began to catch my attention. Wrong turn. Faaaantastic. This night couldn’t seem to go my way. Suddenly I see it! Brown Mountain Overlook. I knew exactly where I was, I had read about this spot–it was the other lookout point! I abrubtly swerved into the overlook parking lot and felt joyously rejuvenated realizing the mission was not doomed.Not only was I where I wanted to be, I was greeted by proof that not all North Carolina guys are so bad as a younger guy approached me – I think his name was Zimmer – and began telling me about the lights.“Oh yeah, you’re in the right place, bud,” Zimmer said. He’d been coming here most of his life, mostly to hang out with his brother and friends and to hike the areas fantastic trails and riversides, but knew all too well that the lights existed. “You keep watching those hills and they’ll show up right on the side of that mountain right there,” as he pointed into the darkness.Zimmer and his pals hung out for a bit and eventually took off,  warning me to be careful up in those woods at night.Enter Cindy, a grandmother and strong believer in the lights who frequents the viewpoint hoping to catch a third sight of them. Cindy had brought up two of her grandchildren this particular night, planning to hang around for a couple hours as the kids ran around the hillside whispering of possible sightings and whatever else adolescent girls whisper about.The view from the Brown Mountain Overlook on Hwy 181The view from the Brown Mountain Overlook on Hwy 181.“The first time was about twenty years ago, and it was just over this range here to the left side of the Brown Mountain Overlook, there were red lights that were rising from somewhere near that peak–or just over the other side of that peak–and I thought they were airplanes. But they would rise and stop up not too far above the range and then start coming towards the direction of where we were parked, and then they would disappear,” she said as cricket chirps echoed through the blackness of the canyon.Cindy’s advice: Patience is key.The full moon would peek through the clouds every now and then reflecting off of spooky fog patches down in the valley creating ghostly hazes far below. Cindy was excited to be there again staring over that bluff hoping to catch another glimpse of the legendary glowing orbs that every-so-often present themselves to patient viewers, and I was excited to have a few friendly people around as we all stood loyaly watching through the night. As time passed the rain returned, the air turned brisk, the wind began to bellow, and everybody’s patience wore thin. Skunked.As it turned out, the experience was worth the trouble despite the lack of a triumphant ending. Standing there on the edge, headlights swept passed me as Cindy and her children fled the coming rain and I was left standing alone in the dark once again. “Be careful if you’re going to stay alone,” she had told me while pulling away. But my own fear had subsided long ago, as it usually does when the thrill of adventure begins to peak and fear converts to fun, which, in turn, becomes reward. The lights hadn’t shown that night, but as I walked back to the car at the witching hour, I knew the night was a success. And not only was it a success, I’d never forget it.last_img read more

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Clips of the Week: Creeking in WNC, Singing in SNP, and Biting It at the TDF

first_imgOur favorite web videos from around the internets for the week that was:1. Taking It to the CreekWith the amount of precipitation the Southeast has gotten this spring and summer, the creekboating has been amaze-balls. Check out this boof montage footage from western North Carolina and East Tennessee.2. Sweet Mountain JamThis submission from BRO reader Kara Murphy is a original song set over some great shots from Virginia, including Grayson Highlands, McAfee Knob, Peaks of Otter, Shenandoah National Park and more.3. Something Dirty From the TourHere is something dirty from the Tour de France, and it’s not riders doping. Possibly NSFW language at the end, but not really sure because they are speaking English, like, the Great Britain version.last_img

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Cuomo Challenger Astorino Seizes on Corruption Panel Report

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Republican gubernatorial challenger Rob Astorino, who has struggled mightily to chip away at Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s massive lead in the polls, may have finally found a chink in the governor’s armor—the governor’s own public corruption investigatory panel tasked with cleaning up Albany.An explosive new report published in The New York Times Wednesday details how Cuomo’s close associates intervened whenever the panel of prosecutors—known as the Moreland Commission—began focusing on groups politically linked to Cuomo, even to the point of demanding that subpoenas be withdrawn.The Times detailed the actions of Lawrence Schwartz, one of Cuomo’s senior aides, and Regina Calcaterra, the commission’s executive director and a former Suffolk County chief deputy county executive under Steve Bellone.The commissioners believed, according to the Times, that Calcaterra was updating the governor’s office in real-time during their meetings, and was directly involved in quashing subpoenas.Her meddling apparently became so intrusive that Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice, one of the co-chairs, wanted Calcaterra replaced, the Times reported. Rice stepped down after announcing her bid for Congress.Astorino, the Westchester County Executive, is using the report as a lifeline to keep his struggling campaign above water. He wasted no time attacking Cuomo in a conference call with reporters. He accused the governor of breaking the law and went so far as calling him the “most corrupt governor in history.”When asked what laws he believes Cuomo actually violated, Astorino responded: “obstruction of justice.” Pressed further for specific charges, he didn’t elaborate.“This is obviously very serious,” Astorino said over the phone from Aspen, where he’d just flown in for the Republican Governors Association’s executive meeting, armed with a copy of the Times he brought with him.“It’s likely, a strong likelihood, that it will result in criminal charges,” he said. “Andrew Cuomo has a lot of questions to answer.“The people of New York, I think, are absolutely tired of scandal and corruption in Albany,” he added. “It’s galling that a man who rode in promising to be the White Knight is actually knee-deep in scandal right now.”Astorino fired off several questions aimed at the governor, including: Who gave Regina Calcaterra the authority to interfere with the subpoenas and investigations? Who in the Cuomo administration has been subpoenaed? How many subpoenas were squashed by the governor’s office?Astorino also challenged Cuomo to release all emails and BlackBerry messages related to the Moreland Commission’s investigation.His heated rebuke of Cuomo comes only two days after a Siena College poll had him trailing the governor by 37 points.Astorino’s problem? Many voters simply don’t know who he is, according to pollsters.“Astorino has failed to become significantly more known to voters or to put a dent in the Cuomo armor in the last six months,” Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg said when the poll was released. “He has much to do and not much time to do it in.”It may not be for a lack of trying, however.Astorino has criticized Cuomo’s response to Superstorm Sandy, noting that thousands of Sandy victims still aren’t in their homes, and for using federal Sandy relief money to fund state tourism advertisements in hurricane-devastated areas.Gov. Andrew Cuomo giving a speech in Huntington. (Spencer Rumsey/Long Island Press)He said that Cuomo’s lead in the polls is “based on a big lie.”There’s also the issue of money, or lack thereof in Astorino’s war chest. According to the latest filings, Cuomo had $35 million on hand; Astorino, $2.4 million.Cuomo has not publicly addressed the Times’ report or issued any statements. But his office did release a press release Wednesday announcing $175 million for localities to pay for post-Sandy storm repairs, $145 million of which is going to Nassau and Suffolk counties.Astorino called on Cuomo to address the public, saying the governor should come clean about “what he knew, what he ordered, what he approved.”He also urged the U.S. Attorney in Manhattan, Preet Bharara, to continue his investigation into the commission.Bharara “needs to do his job efficiently and he also needs to do it expeditiously,” Astorino said, preferably before Election Day “so the public can feel they can make an honest evaluation of the candidates.”In a 13-page response to the Times, the governor’s office defended Cuomo’s actions.“A commission appointed by and staffed by the executive cannot investigate the executive,” his office reportedly said. “It is a pure conflict of interest and would not pass the laugh test.”But, the Times reported, “The governor’s office interfered with the commission when it was looking into groups that were politically close to him. In fact, the commission never tried to investigate his administration.”The commission, which was formed July 2, 2013, was unceremoniously disbanded last March—10 months sooner than expected when Cuomo announced its formation.last_img read more

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Mysterious Drone Company Mum On Riverhead Factory Plans

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A secretive aerospace company planning to launch solar-powered drone factory on eastern Long Island has sparked rumors that Facebook may have contracted the firm to beam Internet service to Third World nations.Luminati Aerospace, which last month bought a 16-acre plot for $3 million from the recently closed Skydive Long Island, is requesting permission from the Town of Riverhead to fly its next-generation drones from a limited-use runway at the Enterprise Park in Calverton known as EPCAL—but remains tight-lipped about the unmanned aircraft it plans to manufacture.“There’s a confidential nature to our contract and I have to respect the wishes of our client,” Daniel Preston, CEO and chief technology officer for Luminati, told the Riverhead town board Thursday. When reporters pressed him for more information after the meeting, he said the company “is not at liberty to discuss” details or reveal their client other than to say they’re commercial and not military.Facebook did not respond to a request to confirm or deny whether they hired Luminati, but the social media company has reportedly been developing similar large solar-powered drones—circling the planet at 60,000 to 90,000 feet, above commercial aircraft traffic—to expand Internet service to vast unconnected parts of the world. Google, which reportedly has a similar plan using balloons, did not respond, either.Despite the limited information available—even Luminati’s website is only one page with no links or contact information, just a photo of an antique astrology-style sketch of the sun—officials spoke highly of the company, which derives its name from the ancient secret society The Illuminati.“It’s so exciting to think that once again we may be on the forefront of aviation,” Riverhead Town Supervisor Sean Walter said, referring to Grumman’s storied history at the site and the many firsts in flight that earned LI the nickname, The Cradle of Aviation. “This is the biggest thing that’s happening on Long Island right now.”Preston echoed the sentiment. Although there is little known about the project, what is clear is that the plan is only in its infancy. Should the town board approve Luminati’s request to use one of two runways at the industrial park, the company also plans to ask for permission to expand a building at the site to fit manufacturing equipment too large for the current facility.Preston noted that the electric-powered drones neither burn fuel nor have the same deafening roar as standard aircraft, so the impact on neighbors and the environment should be minimal.“By aviation standards, or by any standards…we are very quiet operation and very green in nature,” he said.If approved, it would take an estimated six months to build the plant. In the meantime, Preston said the company’s leadership is moving to Riverhead and accepting applications for about 40 designers, machinists and other workers. Walter said he hopes to approve the runway agreement by Nov. 4.The news came shortly after Suffolk County lawmakers passed the first legislation on LI regulating small consumer drones, with other local municipalities and the Federal Aviation Administration considering similar regulations. Small drone sightings reported to local authorities saw a fivefold increase so far this year over all of last year on LI, the Press exclusively reported last month.A public hearing on the runway agreement proposal will be held 7 p.m. Tues., Oct. 20 at Riverhead Town Hall, 200 Howell Rd., Riverhead.last_img read more

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BIMCO Names New Secretary General & CEO

first_imgThe world’s largest shipping association BIMCO has appointed David Loosley as its new Secretary-General & CEO with effect from June 2020. Mr. Loosley joins from the Institute of Marine Engineering Science & Technology (IMarEST), which he has led for the last eight years.Angus Frew, BIMCO’s current Secretary General & CEO, had previously announced that he will be stepping down in the summer of 2020 after leading the organization for seven years as he wishes to spend more time in the UK and less time working. “We are delighted to have found a successor who can continue to build on the excellent work carried out by Angus Frew in positioning BIMCO as the world’s largest international shipping association. David has outstanding communication skills and is a proven leader of an international shipping-related business,” BIMCO President, Sadan Kaptanoglu said announcing his appointment.Prior to joining IMarEST, Mr. Loosley ran operations at the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office (UKHO) where he was responsible for the transition from analogue to digital navigational products, and chaired the Digital Geospatial Information Working Group (DGWIG) to help drive global standardization. He has also served at sea for 10 years in the UK Royal Navy.“I am very excited to be joining BIMCO at this critical time for the industry where a volatile market, new technology, and increasing environmental regulation are all having a significant impact. I look forward to working with the Board of Directors to build on the work of my predecessor and to ensure that BIMCO maintains its relevance and leadership position, continuing to provide practical solutions and expert advice to its members and the wider maritime community,” Loosley said.last_img read more

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Total Taps Worley for North Plate FEED in Gulf of Mexico

first_imgWorley has been awarded the front-end engineering design (FEED) contract for Total USA’s North Platte field development in the Gulf of Mexico.Located approximately 275 kilometers off the coast of Louisiana, the North Platte field development includes a semi-submersible floating production unit (FPU) in water over 1,300 meters deep.The project brings together Worley’s recently acquired capability for the floating production unit topside design with Intecsea experience for the design of the hull, mooring and subsea pipelines.Having completed the pre-FEED phase in August 2019, this award extends Worley’s involvement in Total’s deepwater Gulf of Mexico project.“We are delighted to continue supporting Total’s return to Gulf of Mexico operations through the North Platte development,” said Karen Sobel, Group president for Major Projects and Integrated Solutions at Worley. “This project provides Worley with an opportunity to bring together our complimentary capability in both topside and hull design to offer complete, capital efficient and lightweight deep-water solutions. It’s an exciting prospect for our customers and our business.”The FEED component of the project is being led by Worley’s Houston office with support from its Hyderabad office in India.The North Platte Development forms part of Total’s reentry, as an operator, into Gulf of Mexico operations with oil production expected to average 75,000 barrels per day at plateau level.Total expects to make its final investment decision in 2021.last_img read more

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Carolyn Sue Reynolds

first_imgCarolyn Sue Reynolds, of Harrison, was born on July 27, 1939 in West Harrison, the daughter of George and Rosie Boggs.  She married Ronald G. Reynolds on August 31, 1973 in Cincinnati, Ohio and he preceded her in death on May 6, 1990.  Carolyn retired from Campbell-Hausfeld in Harrison.  She enjoyed her church family at New Vision Church in Harrison, where she was a member.  Carolyn liked to garden, and was fond of attending and participating in Native-American festivals.  She especially adored spending time with her family.  On Saturday, May 27, 2017, at the age of 77, Carolyn passed away at Arbor Grove Village in Greensburg. Those surviving who will cherish Carolyn’s memory include her children, Allen Boggs of Effingham, IL, Vicky Lynn (Randy) Arteburn of Mason, IL, Anthony (Missy) Boggs of Cape Coral, FL, and Eugene (Dionne) Gehrum of Rising Sun; brothers, Merle (Lois) Boggs of West Harrison, McKinley (Verdi) Boggs of Covington, KY, and a sister, Virginia Hamlin of Batavia, OH; 5 grandchildren; 7 great-grandchildren, and several nieces and nephews.  Besides her parents and her husband, she was preceded in death by a brother, George Boggs, Jr., a sister, Rosemary Jones, and a brother-in-law, Jackson Hamlin. Memorial contributions may be directed to the family.  To sign the online guestbook or leave a personal condolence, please visit www.cookrosenberger.com.  The staff of Cook Rosenberger Funeral Home is honored to care for the family of Carolyn Reynolds.center_img Visitation is Monday, June 5, 2017 from 10 a.m. until time of service at 11 a.m. at Cook Rosenberger Funeral Home, 929 Main Street, Brookville.  Pastor Tom Gillespie will officiate the service at the funeral home and burial will follow in Maple Grove Cemetery.last_img read more

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Alderweireld making waves again

first_imgToby Alderweireld helped Atletico Madrid shock the football world last season – success he can follow by helping Southampton create similar ripples this term. The Belgium defender was a part of the Atleti side that last term so impressively broke Barcelona and Real Madrid’s stranglehold on Spanish football. Alderweireld helped Diego Simeone’s side to a first Primera Division crown since 1996 and came off the bench in the Champions League final, where rivals Real Madrid cruelly denied the Atletico a famous double. Reaching the Lisbon finale was impressive enough, though, and the kind of success inspiring the 25-year-old to succeed at Southampton five months on. Alderweireld moved to St Mary’s in search of first-team football on a season-long loan, with a view to a £6.3million permanent deal – a surprising deadline-day move which is so far paying dividends. “I played games and I was happy there [at Atletico], but I wanted to play more for at least one season,” he said. “Southampton came, I talked to Ronald Koeman and he asked if I could play here and I said ‘yeah, yeah, why not? No problem’. “They brought a lot of footballers for the way we want to play and I like that. “He looked at a lot of games in Spain and said ‘yeah, you played one third of the games, so you can stay there and hope for your chance or come here and show your qualities’. “I really wanted to play again a lot more and to show my qualities to the world.” Alderweireld is certainly doing that so far, having played an integral role in Southampton’s fine start to the campaign. Press Association This was supposed to be a season of doom and gloom at St Mary’s given the well-documented talent drain, yet they start November second in the Barclays Premier League with the best defensive record in English football. “I did not expect us to be as good as we are, of course,” he said after Saturday’s 1-0 win against Stoke. “But I expected to come into a very good team, who like to play football and get good results. “Like now, we’re working very hard and doing good. “We feel when someone is going, someone has to stay. There’s a good feeling about us so it helps.” Few expect Saints to remain in such a lofty position come the end of the season, but many commentators said similar things about Atletico last season. “That is why Saturday was a very good win,” Alderweireld said when that was put to him. “The expectations are rising. “Everybody, especially at home, think we’re going to win maybe easily against a good opponent like Stoke City. “It is very difficult to achieve that and that’s why we worked very hard. “We played good in the first half and in the second half we worked very hard to get the three points. That makes me very satisfied.” last_img read more

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