LONDON (AP): Leicester winger Riyad Mahrez became the first African to be named English football’s player of the year yesterday, straight after the Algerian helped his team close in on the Premier League title. Mahrez was flown by helicopter to the Professional Footballers’ Association ceremony in London after scoring his 17th goal of Leicester’s astonishing title charge as the leaders beat Swansea 4-0 at the King Power Stadium in central England. Mahrez was on a six-man shortlist including Leicester teammates Jamie Vardy and N’Golo Kante for the vote of their fellow professionals in English football. “I’m very grateful to receive this award,” Mahrez said. “It’s extra special because if the players vote for me, it’s because they’ve seen I’ve been great this year, so I’m happy. But it’s more team things. Without my teammates, I wouldn’t get this award.” The 25-year-old Mahrez is only the second winner of the PFA award from outside England. Uruguay striker Luis Suarez won it in 2014 while playing for Liverpool. Unlike Suarez, Mahrez was an unknown when he moved to England two years ago, joining Leicester from second tier French side Le Havre for less than 500,000 pounds. The transfer now seems one of the best bargains ever in English football, where the record fee is the 59.7 million pounds that Manchester United paid for Angel Di Maria in 2014 before selling the winger the following year. Mahrez has provided inventiveness and flair to Leicester’s attacking play, contributing not only goals but also 11 assists to help transform a team that fought for Premier League survival last season. Now a guaranteed starter, Mahrez was an unused substitute this weekend a year ago when Leicester beat Burnley to finally escape the relegation zone. Leicester started the season as a 5,000-1 title outsider but is now set to become English football’s first maiden championship winner since Nottingham Forest in 1978. “The secret has been team spirit,” Mahrez said. “We work so hard for each other. We are like brothers, it’s everywhere on the pitch. That’s our strength.”
West Ham goalkeeper Robert Green is set to join QPR after agreeing a £50,000-a-week deal, The Daily Mail report.The England international, 32, will soon be a free agent after West Ham refused to meet his pay demands.It is claimed that Rangers opted for Green after briefly considering Tottenham keeper Heurelho Gomes.Meanwhile, the Daily Mirror say Brendan Rodgers is trying to persuade Salomon Kalou to snub Schalke and sign for Liverpool now he’s left Chelsea.Rodgers, who recently took over as manager at Anfield, knows Kalou well from his time on the Blues’ coaching staff.This page is regularly updated. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebook
Chris Briley and Phil Kaplan are architects in southern Maine. They are smart, talented, funny, and they are go-getters. Chris and Phil began podcasting a couple of years ago on iTunes. One of our contributing editors, Scott Gibson, pointed them out to us, and we asked them to podcast on GBA.Yes, at first we were skeptical about a couple of architects talking about building science, but these guys get it. They also have great guests, pick timely topics, and are excellent cocktail-mixers. And for that, GBA is pleased to announce their addition to the masthead as contributing editors.Allison Bailes is a blogger with a PhD. His experience as a high school teacher and university physics professor serve him well in describing building science issues to regular folks like me. But writing 300+ articles in two years for his Energy Vanguard blog is not his day job — being an Energy Vanguard is. Allison is a building science trainer, speaker, writer, and consultant. His company, Energy Vanguard designs mechanical systems and is a HERS proivider.Allison, located in Decatur, Georgia, joins two others on the climate zone 3 section of the masthead — Michael Chandler (a builder) and the inimitable Carl Seville (a former remodeler, current consultant, and curmudgeon). We are very happy to finally have an HVAC guy on our team.As I told Chris, Phil, and Allison, most of what being on the masthead means is that you promise to answer the phone if you see us on caller ID. But really it means being incessant in your enthusiasm for promoting better design, remodeling, and building.You can listen to all three of them chat on Chris and Phil’s _Green Architects’ Lounge_ podcast , where Allison broke the news to Chris and Phil that had been ‘made.’Please welcome these guys to the GBA Team.