Today’s fashion industry is best summarised as: “Go fast or go home.” This is true for shoppers, designers and workers. The rise of huge retailers, from HM and Zara (credited with authoring fashion that was truly fast) through to Primark (famously low cost), threw out the rulebook. Fast fashion condenses the 101 processes of making a garment into six to eight weeks. Instead of the old rhythm – spring/summer, autumn/winter – a fast-fashion brand can introduce two mini-seasons a week. A piece of fast fashion will last five weeks in the average wardrobe.

Older generations can be baffled (though we buy in, too), but the kids are all right with the concept. It’s all they know and, as we slide towards a low-wage economy, fast fashion often bankrolls their style aspirations.

A year ago, the Rana Plaza catastrophe revealed the truth – 1,133 people, mainly young female garment workers, were killed and 2,500 injured when the factory in Bangladesh collapsed. In a new Guardian Shorts ebook I unpick the context of the disaster with co-author Jason Burke. It was a perfect storm of relentless pressure, loss of control and indifference to the reality affecting those in the supply chain who take all the risk and none of the profits. Change has to happen, but fast fashion isn’t going anywhere. Aditya Chakrabortty calls fashion “hyper capitalist” – and despite Rana Plaza, investors are still tumbling over themselves to get involved.

The boycott is out of fashion; even labour rights organisations warn against it hurting those we want to help. Four million people, 70% young women, work in Bangladesh’s ready-made garment (RMG) industry.

What to do when guilt won’t wash? For the global Fashion Revolution Day on 24 April (see Green Crush, below), fashionrevolution.org asks: “Who made your clothes?” It’s a starting point, and will reconnect your daughters with how their clothes are made. They’ll become part of the movement telling the big brands, under major scrutiny and pressure to reform, that they care.

Traid.org.uk demystifies garment production and offers other ways of getting a fashion hit, by customising and outsourcing. It also runs sewing classes for teens. If you really want to understand fashion, make some.

We Are What We Wear: How Fast Fashion Caused the Collapse of Rana Plaza is available from Guardian Shorts (£1.99)

Green crush

The first anniversary of the Rana Plaza disaster on 24 April will be Fashion Revolution Day. It’s the brainchild of Carry Somers, a Derbyshire-based hat designer and fairtrade pioneer. “Rana Plaza can be the catalyst to reconnect fashion lovers with the people who made their clothes and bring about real change,” she says. Events will be held worldwide and in the UK, from knit-ins and debates to catwalks. A London highlight will be an exhibition (right) by photographer Trevor Leighton at the Westfield Stratford City pop-up shop Designer Jumble. Baroness Lola Young of Hornsey, who set up the All Parliamentary group on ethics and sustainability in fashion, says: “Fashion Revolution Day will be one of the few truly global campaigns this century.” Join in.

Greenspeak: mass balance cotton {ma:s bælens kot’n} noun

New rules allow fairtrade cotton to be mixed with conventional in the supply chain. A clever way to give West African farmers more access to the market, or another way to favour a rapacious marketplace?

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English Heritage has rebutted claims by Boris Johnson that the organisation backed almost all of the 200-plus new towers planned for London.

Responding to the launch of the London Skyline campaign in the Observer earlier this month, a spokesman for the mayor said: “Virtually every one of these towers has the active support of local elected representatives plus English Heritage.” But Nigel Barker, EH’s planning and conservation director in London, said this was “an overstatement”, adding that “there are not many we’ve actively supported”.

Barker cited a dozen proposed towers, mostly along the river Thames, which EH had opposed and said that Johnson was “at odds with the facts. He just chooses to ignore them.” He also challenges the mayor’s claim, in the Evening Standard, that towers approved by him “will not conflict with the views of great London buildings such as the Palace of Westminster or the Tower of London or St Paul’s”.

“That’s certainly not correct,” said Barker, citing the proposed Elizabeth House development in Waterloo, which would be built on the Westminster World Heritage Site. He said the communities secretary, Eric Pickles, “was advised that it would have an adverse effect by Unesco, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, the Royal Parks, English Heritage, the 20th Century Society and his own civil servants”.

Johnson argues that tall buildings are necessary to address London’s housing shortage, that they will help pay for affordable housing, and are only located in areas with good public transport. According to Barker: “Tall buildings may play a role [in meeting housing needs], but we haven’t seen hard evidence that they will be beneficial. We need to see a lot more information to justify them.”

He also questioned the mayor’s support for the towers proposed for Convoys Wharf, on the south side of the Thames, which he criticised for its “relatively poor accessibility” and for providing only 15% affordable units. The practice of permitting luxury riverside developments, and then taking contributions to be spent on affordable housing elsewhere, will, said Barker, “create segregated housing and undermine the integrity of communities”.

Islington councillor James Murray said Johnson was wrong to claim that local authorities supported his decisions on the proposed towers. The mayor recently overturned Islington’s decision to reject the proposed City Forum towers, designed by Foster and Partners, on the grounds that, as Murray puts it, “it sold us short on affordable housing”. Murray, who is the council’s executive member for housing and development, said: “What really upsets local people is seeing homes going up, being sold overseas, and then standing empty.” This, he argues, is more likely to happen with tall buildings.

Peter Rees, who as chief planner of the City of London approved the Gherkin and the Cheesegrater, told the Architects’ Journal that the wave of residential towers “should engender a deep sense of shame in those who created and approved them”. He added that “residential towers do not achieve high densities and leave unusable space on the sites which they do not fill. Those of us who feel passionate about the form and future of our amazing city are sad to see it being trashed.”

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A mother and her two children have described how they escaped from a safari park lion enclosure after their car burst into flames.

“It could have been in the flamingos or the camels but no, it had to be in the lion enclosure,” Helen Clements told the BBC.

Clements and her nine-year-old son George and 12-year-old daughter Charlie had been visiting Longleat safari park in Wiltshire on Good Friday when they saw

v=aE-cCbFbG8k” title=”"steam coming from their car and assumed it had overheated.

“Then basically, we thought: ‘That’s not steam, that’s actually smoke,’” she told BBC News. “And it was getting thicker and thicker and obviously coming into us, and then obviously we saw flames.”

She sounded her horn – which park staff praised as the right response – and she and her son opened their doors. Park rangers then ran towards them, shouting: “Get back in the car. Do not get out of the car.”

“What do you do?” Clements, from Kingswood, Gloucestershire, asked. “Do

Lions at Longleat. Photograph: Longleat Safari and Adventure/PA

you get out of the car because you’re on fire? They’re telling you to get back in the car.”

George ran out of the car, but Clements called him back, before a ranger pulled up in a vehicle and rescued them. “The rangers were fantastic. They literally came straight away,” Clements said. “Literally as he opened the door we just jumped into his vehicle, and they took us away and got it all sorted out.”

The lions were about 100 yards away at the time, Clements said, although she and her children could not see them because of cars blocking the view.

“I can laugh about it now – it’s only a car and we’re all safe,” said Clements. “You look at the funny side of it now.”

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The best new liquid lipsticks

Posted by MereNews On April - 20 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

They’re not quite lip glosses and they’re not quite lip stains – they’re called things like “paints” and “extraits”, they’re liquid lipsticks and they stay on for almost ever. Best for the bold colours, the shiny wet-look reds and fuchsias, the new liquid lipsticks are a mouth-based power move. They boast intense pigment, easy application and sometimes a bit of sun protection, and tomorrow they’ll be everywhere. Try Hourglass Liquid Lipstick (£23, net-a-porter.com) or Guerlain Rouge L’Extrait (£31.50, houseoffraser.co.uk) – it lasts for hours, and it has its own mirror, which we’ll never not be impressed by.


L’Oréal L’Extraordinaire £.8.99, boots.com Rimmel Apocalips Lacquer £5.49, superdrug.com Giorgio Armani Lip Maestro £25, armanibeauty.co.uk Bourjois Rouge Velvet £9, thisisbeautymart.com

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The Treasury must urgently explain its plans to allow HM Revenue and Customs to sell the personal data of millions of taxpayers to private companies, Labour has said.

The call comes after the Guardian revealed ministers were planning to change the law to allow the sharing of anonymised data with third parties, where there is a public benefit. They are currently examining charging options.

Critics fear the data could include details about income, tax arrangements and payment history and would carry a risk that people could be identified. Even the perception that this could happen might lead to a breakdown in trust between HMRC and taxpayers, the Chartered Institute of Taxation warned.

Shabana Mahmood, the shadow exchequer secretary, has now waded into the debate calling on the Treasury “to explain urgently if such a programme exists and if so what its purpose is”.

“We would be concerned if the government put anything forward that could compromise the privacy of individuals simply complying with their tax obligations,” she said.

The plan, overseen by the Tory exchequer secretary David Gauke, has already provoked a backlash from privacy campaigners and tax professionals. The senior Tory MP David Davis, a former minister and shadow home secretary, branded it “borderline insane” and said the Treasury had come up with no credible justification.

HMRC has not made clear exactly what bits of data it would share and with whom, but it has a wealth of information about people living in Britain. Its director of risk and intelligence said in 2012: “We have more data than the British Library.”

The government currently has strict rules about what can be released outside HMRC, with a near total ban on data sharing unless it is beneficial for the organisation’s internal work. But despite the restrictions, HMRC has quietly launched a pilot programme that has released data about VAT registration for research purposes to three private credit ratings agencies: Experian, Equifax and Dun Bradstreet.

To comply with the law, the private ratings agencies, which determine credit scores for millions of people and businesses, have been contracted to act on behalf of HMRC and are “therefore treated as part of the department” – giving them access to tax data about businesses that would otherwise be confidential.

The government’s plans to change the law to allow the sale of anonymised individual tax data and release of the VAT register were buried in documents as part of the autumn statement and recent budget.

Emma Carr, of Big Brother Watch, said the government should not try to sneak the plans through without a public debate. She said: “The ongoing claims about anonymous data overlook the serious risks to privacy of individual-level data being vulnerable to reidentification.”

During the consultation process officials acknowledged there were “concerns around the dangers of individual identities being disclosed inadvertently” but they believe the data can be appropriately protected.

The Treasury confirmed it was proceeding with plans to legislate to make aggregated and anonymised data more widely available, as set out in an HMRC document that said: “The government has decided to proceed with the proposal to remove the legal restrictions that currently limit HMRC’s ability to share anonymised individual-level data for the purpose of research and analysis and deliver public benefits wider than HMRC’s own functions, but they accept that this must be done only where there are sufficient safeguards in place to protect taxpayer confidentiality.”

An HMRC spokesman said: “HMRC is committed to protecting its customers’ information. We shall be consulting further on implementing the proposals for sharing anonymised data, and would only take forward specific measures where there was a clear public benefit and subject to suitable safeguards.”

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The tentative Geneva deal to resolve the Ukraine crisis is hanging by a thread after as many as five people were killed in a gun battle near the volatile eastern town of Slavyansk early on Sunday.

An Easter truce declared by the authorities in Kiev was rudely shattered after two groups opened fire on each other overnight. Three pro-Russian militants were reported killed, along with two of the assailants, whose identity has not been ascertained. A Reuters cameraman reported that he saw the bodies of two local fighters.

Slavyansk is one of several towns and cities that have been taken over by pro-Russian units of men, whose allegiance is clear but whose provenance remains a mystery. Under a deal signed in Geneva on Thursday by the EU, Russia, Ukraine and the US, the units were supposed to retire, but have thus far shown no signs of desisting. A team of mediators is heading to eastern Ukraine to try to persuade the pro-Russian groups to disband, but appears to be facing an unenviable challenge. Guardian attempts to enter Slavyansk were brusquely repelled by armed men. The situation for non-Russian journalists in eastern Ukraine has become increasingly precarious in recent days.

Separatist militiamen near Slavyansk told Reuters that a convoy of four vehicles had approached their checkpoint at about 2am and opened fire.

Location of Slavyansk

“We had three dead, four wounded,” one of the separatist fighters, called Vladimir, told Reuters at the checkpoint, where there were two burnt-out jeeps.

He said the separatists had returned fire and killed two of the attackers, who he said were members of Right Sector, a group loosely aligned with the government in Kiev. Slavyansk has been controlled by separatists since last weekend. In Kiev, the interior ministry said one person had been killed and three injured in an armed clash. It said police were trying to establish more details of what happened.

Overnight, Orthodox leaders in Kiev and Moscow traded barbs over the Ukraine crisis as politics overshadowed traditional Easter observances.

Patriarch Filaret thundered to the faithful in pro-western Kiev that Russia was an enemy whose “attack” on Ukraine was doomed to failure because it was evil and contrary to God’s will.

In Moscow, the patriarch of the Russian church, Kirill, delivered a prayer for Ukraine in which he called on God in turn to put “an end to the designs of those who want to destroy Holy Russia”.

Kirill said that while Ukraine was “politically” separate, “spiritually and historically” it was at one with Russia, and he prayed that it would benefit from authorities that were “legitimately elected”.

In comments to be broadcast on US television on Sunday, the Ukrainian prime minister, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, lashed out at the Russian president, Vladimir Putin – whom Kiev and Washington accuse of masterminding the insurgency in Ukraine – for having a “dream to restore the Soviet Union”.

Yatsenyuk, speaking to NBC’s Meet the Press, also condemned those who reportedly handed out pamphlets demanding Jews register or be expelled in the east of Ukraine as “bastards” who should be brought to justice.

A poll published on Saturday suggested that the majority of inhabitants in Ukraine’s restive east, while suspicious of Kiev’s authorities, had no desire to be subsumed into the Russian Federation.

The Russian-language Weekly Mirror newspaper said 52.2% of those surveyed for a poll in the separatist hub of Donetsk by Kiev’s Institute for International Sociology were against coming under Russian rule, while 27.5% were in favour.

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Lewis Hamilton‘s dominance of the 2014 Formula One season continued on Sunday when he won the Chinese Grand Prix, his first hat-trick of victories following his triumphs in Malaysia and Bahrain.

It was his third victory out of four this season and the 25th of his career, passing Juan Manuel Fangio and drawing level with Jim Clark and Niki Lauda.

He still trails his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg in the world championship because of his failure to finish the opening race in Australia. The gap, however, is now down to four points.

Rosberg completed his own hat-trick of second places, while third place went to Fernando Alonso with an improved Ferrari performance.

But the most interesting aspect of the race was the battle for the spoils at Red Bull, with Daniel Ricciardo once again proving too fast for his team-mate Sebastian Vettel, the four-time world champion. If this continues for much longer we may have to reassess the German’s greatness.

But for his disqualification from second place in the opening race in his native Australia last month, Ricciardo would now be leading Vettel in the championship. The Australian has beaten him three times out of four in qualifying and consistently outpaced him in racing mode.

However Red Bull’s team principal, Christian Horner, looked a worried man when his two drivers came together on the 25th lap. Vettel did not take kindly to being ordered to move over for the faster Ricciardo for the second time this season.

Vettel wanted to know what tyres Ricciardo was on. He was told: “Primes, but he stopped later than you.” Vettel replied “tough luck.” A little later he did appear to let Ricciardo through, but he certainly made him battle for it.

But the afternoon belonged to Hamilton, who streaked away from pole and beat the pursuing Rosberg by 18.6 seconds at the end. Rosberg’s poor start from fourth on the grid was made worse when he clashed with the Williams of Valtteri Bottas and he dropped back to seventh.

Hamilton, however, could view any mayhem in his rearview mirror. “I can’t believe how amazing the team is,” he said. “I was racing myself. It feels great. I’m so happy. We’re going to keep pushing, keep moving forward.”

Hamilton said he was shown the checkered flag a lap early. “It was very, very strange. But I kept going and it was good to do another lap.”

Rosberg said: “The whole weekend went badly for me and I didn’t have telemetry for the race. But I’m leading the championship.”

With Hamilton racing himself, it was left to Rosberg to make the moves, which he did to go past Nico Hulkenberg and then Felipe Massa before overtaking the Red Bull pair, Ricciardo to go fourth and then Vettel to go third before accounting for Alonso. But Rosberg knows he has Hamilton right on his tail now.

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Liverpool‘s visit to Norwich on Sunday may be an Istanbul-sized psychological obstacle for the title challengers to overcome, if Steven Gerrard‘s analogy is accurate, yet the Premier League leaders do possess a not-so-secret weapon to boost confidence at Carrow Road.

Luis Suárez has scored 11 goals in four games against the Canaries, including four goals at Anfield in December and hat-tricks on his previous two trips to East Anglia. Just one goal on Sunday would take the Premier League’s leading goalscorer to 30 for the season and strengthen an already solid case for the player of the year award.

While few would argue against such an honour, last season’s cannibalistic tendencies notwithstanding, there is just one tiny complication. Should Liverpool extend their glorious winning sequence beyond 10 games and, aided by the efforts of the loaned-out Fabio Borini’s at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, go on to win a first title in 24 years, the sort of leadership displayed by Gerrard against Manchester City last Sunday will inevitably win him a share of the vote.

Liverpool have several convincing candidates and a split vote could see the award go elsewhere. David Ginola in 1999 springs to mind. The then Tottenham player was not exactly an undeserving recipient but that was the year Manchester United won everything in sight. The treble winners were too much of a team for any individual to stand out and Liverpool, with impressive performers all over the pitch this season, may be the same.

“I suppose that’s the sort of headache you would want,” Brendan Rodgers says. “It means you are being successful. Either of Luis and Steven would be a deserving winner but the biggest victory for me as a coach is the improvement in all the players. I don’t mean as a squad, although as a squad we have got better, but as individuals. If we have any success this year it is because of our model, which is about player development. I’m here to facilitate the players being the best they can be, and I’ll drive and push them to improve. We work with each individual player and make a plan for them to be better. The player has to have the responsibility to want to improve, and from that you’ll get performance and excellence. That’s what we sell to the players at Liverpool.”

While that may sound like an excerpt from a coaching manual or PowerPoint presentation, one only has to look at the way Liverpool have climbed the table this season to see there is substance behind the self-help rhetoric. Just about every regular first-team player at the club is playing out of his skin most weeks, not just improving.

Daniel Sturridge has weighed in with the goals as well as Suárez, has made it to the PFA shortlist for player of the year along with Suárez and Gerrard, and is a certainty for Brazil in summer, as is Raheem Sterling, who seems to get more impudently assured with every passing week. Philippe Coutinho will probably end up sitting out the World Cup, which will be a great shame because he is among the most creative and consistently watchable Brazilians playing in this country this season. Jordan Henderson has come on well enough to make his mark with England, too, and managed in a matter of months to make Sir Alex Ferguson’s reservations about his gait look rather silly.

Jon Flanagan has appeared on the scene to make the left-back position his own, helping ensure that the all-important tradition of a sprinkling of scousers in the team is maintained, while Martin Skrtel has surprised practically everyone with important goals to add to reliable defending. The penalty area grappler from Slovakia may look like a typical stopper but he has shown this season he can play with the ball at his feet rather than just returning it to the opposition’s half and, with seven league goals to date, mostly headers from set-piece crosses, he is currently outscoring regular forwards such as Fernando Torres, Shane Long and Juan Mata. “It doesn’t matter who is scoring the goals,” Skrtel said after the City victory. “The most important thing is that we are winning, because that’s what we have to do.”

A win on Sunday would extend the lead to five points after Chelsea, next Sunday’s visitors to Anfield, stumbled so unexpectedly against Sunderland. That came three days after Sunderland surprised City (when Manuel Pellegrini moaned again about the “very clear penalty” his club were denied when the ball hit Skrtel’s arm in the area at Anfield, even though the Liverpool player appeared to be looking the other way and the alleged offence was actually clear only to the television cameras).

Liverpool may have an unexpected cushion before the reunion between José Mourinho and his former protege Rodgers, but the Liverpool manager has kept stressing that he is not looking ahead. “That’s not the next game,” Rodgers says of Chelsea. “Stevie in the huddle after Manchester City encapsulated what I’ve been saying throughout the season. The next game is always the most important. It’s not the most glamorous thing to think about but it allows us to focus on the direct rival and not get carried away. I didn’t see City against Sunderland, I watched Everton and Palace instead. But the message from both games was obvious. You can’t take anything for granted against teams near the bottom of this league. Teams down there are fighting for their lives, players are fighting for their families, their livelihoods. They want to remain Premier League players in the most competitive league in the world. They are not going to lay down and die.”

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First there were cash machines and flushing toilets, then came “glamping” (glamorous camping). Now music festivals, once edgy celebrations of youthful counterculture, have been embraced by the travel industry and are being offered as package holidays.

European music festivals are now a rite of passage for many young people – in the same way that Ibiza was for a generation in the late 80s and early 90s – and with dance music dominating the airwaves for the first time in more than a decade, young crowds are increasingly choosing the Club 18-30-style festival getaway in their search for sun, sea … and loud music.

“The European scene is booming and young people are realising you can go to a festival abroad and get your flights, airport transfers and ticket for around £350 – the same as a trip to Reading or Glastonbury,” said Dermot O’Flynn, director of the Eufest travel company, which is selling twice as much apartment accommodation in Croatia as it did last summer.

According to a recent Festicket survey, 20% of festivalgoers bought everything in one package in 2013, but 95% would like to do so this year. “The industry is very healthy, and package trips are more popular than ever,” said Barri Coen, head of marketing at Festicket. “The trend is towards smaller, boutique festivals, and people are increasingly tieing them in with their summer holiday plans. We’ve seen a huge increase in the number of people booking hotels or apartments.”

Festivals themselves are offering joint ticket packages. Exit in Serbia has combined with Sea Dance festival in Montenegro, and Sziget in Budapest has linked up with B.my.Lake in the Hungarian countryside.

The BBC Radio 1 DJ Pete Tong recently launched his own package trip, All Gone To Sea, a four-day, all-star Caribbean cruise. He told the Observer: “The idea of a cruise has always appealed to me. I love the camaraderie and sense of family that grows out of having a group of like-minded music lovers come together. We’re going to recreate that familial vibe, but with the world’s best DJs, island parties and an amazing boat.”

Daisy Cantalamessa, 27, from Reading, finds booking a package trip far more straightforward than finding her own accommodation. “The festival organisers do everything for you. It’s cheaper, and you don’t have to worry about airport transfers,” she said. “When it comes to proper holidays, I like to do things my way. But in terms of festivals, where your only focus is the music and having fun, why wouldn’t you want to make your journey and stay cheaper and easier?”

Others, however, see festivals as passé, and package trips as just another step in the corporatisation of youth culture. Terry Farley, co-founder of the record label Junior Boy’s Own, whose artists have included Underworld and the Chemical Brothers, thinks dance music festivals have reached saturation point and that most are just outdoor parties with DJs playing off laptops, rather than a festival in the true sense, with bands and a wide variety of music. “Kids are aping the festival way of ‘watching a DJ’ and reacting to his antics and lightshows or special effects, rather than realising it’s themselves who are the stars of the show and the dance floor belongs to them, not some idiot up on a big stage throwing cakes or waving his arms about like a clown,” said Farley.

Bill Brewster, co-author of Last Night a DJ Saved my Life, thinks the wave of dance music festivals has already peaked. “The current dance music craze is nothing new. It happened in 94 and 95 with big names like Frankie Knuckles, Sasha, John Digweed and Todd Terry, but it won’t last for ever. It’s a wave at the moment, and it’s a big wave, but it will die down and things will go back to how they were before. That’s just the cyclical nature of music.”

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Gareth Barry could be making his final Goodison Park appearance for Everton, against Manchester United, on Sunday afternoon. He is not certain whether it will be; nothing has been decided for next season yet and there is still the possibility of extending his loan or making his move to Merseyside permanent, but he knows for sure he will be unable to take part in the last home game of the season, against Manchester City.

“That is going to be really frustrating, especially when there could be so much on it,” the midfielder, last capped by England in May 2012, says. Those who have been debating the rights and wrongs of the loan system recently should try looking at it occasionally from the point of view of the player in the middle.

As a City player, albeit one farmed out to Everton for a season, Barry would like to see Manuel Pellegrini’s side win the league, and believes they still can. As an Everton player, he refuses to believe that Wednesday’s surprise home defeat by Crystal Palace will end up costing them a Champions League place. The midfielder is convinced they will get another chance if they can win all their remaining matches, though doing that would involve taking points off Manchester City.

“I have been thinking about the City game for a few weeks now,” Barry says. “I noticed straight away it was the last home game of the season, so that was disappointing for a start. We could be challenging for the top four, which has been our focus all season, or maybe City could secure the title at Goodison in front of me watching, which would have been interesting, to say the least. I suppose, speaking for both clubs, it is good still to have things to challenge for at this time of the year. It is a sign of a successful season.”

Barry switched clubs on the last day of the summer transfer window despite feeling, and letting Pellegrini know, that he still had a future at City. For Everton, the deal could not have worked out better. Roberto Martínez has just admitted he was happier spending some of the Marouane Fellaini money on Barry and James McCarthy than keeping hold of the Belgian midfielder, who returns to Goodison with David Moyes on Sunday.

Barry, too, has had a better time of it than Etihad team-mates such as James Milner and Joleon Lescott, who have struggled for game time this season. At 33, he wants to be playing rather than watching, and he was pleasantly surprised to find that, even at his advanced age, there were still aspects a new manager could teach him about the game.

“It’s been really good to see how Roberto works,” he says. “He sold the club to me in the first place and since I got here he has been brilliant. I’ve learned so much, stuff about positional options and moving into different parts of the pitch that I had not thought so much about before.

“I’m delighted with the way the season has gone. The atmosphere for big games at Goodison is special and that will help spur us on in the games against United and City. There will be twists and turns, I’m sure, and we are still in with a great chance. Both Everton and City have fantastic sets of fans who really get behind the players. I knew my first game at Everton wasn’t going to be a stroll around the pitch. I knew I had to show I could put a shift in, and once you do that they take to you.”

It is a pity, Barry seems to be suggesting, that managers newly arrived from La Liga cannot do the same. He accepts that the game is about opinions, and different managers will have different views about the same player, but he feels he was ushered out of the Etihad before Pellegrini had seen him often enough to make a proper assessment.

“I presume he had watched a few games before he came and made his mind up on that,” Barry says. “I told him he might be making the wrong decision because I still felt I could compete for a midfield place. You can’t just roll over in these situations, you have to back yourself, but I could see after a few conversations that his mind was made up. I had to move on.

“That hurt a little – any rejection in life hurts – but being able to come and play for Everton meant I could close that chapter quite quickly and forget about it. I think I made the right decision. It has been a fantastic year.”

Article source: http://feeds.theguardian.com/c/34708/f/663828/s/398c2354/sc/12/l/0L0Stheguardian0N0Cfootball0C20A140Capr0C190Ceverton0Egareth0Ebarry0Efinal0Ehome0Egame0Emanchester0Eunited0Ecity/story01.htm

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