1 Louis van Gaal admitted Manchester United were fortunate to escape the Britannia Stadium with their unbeaten run still intact.United have still yet to taste defeat since November after Radamel Falcao cancelled out Ryan Shawcross’ early opener to earn them a point against Stoke, but Van Gaal was less than impressed by his side’s performance as they began 2015 with a whimper.“I think Stoke deserved more the victory, but at the end the draw is good,” said the Dutchman, whose side remain third in the Premier League table.“I cannot say we were the better team today. I have said that many times, but today I cannot say this.“I think Stoke were closer to the victory. They had two major chances and we did not create so much in spite of the time and space.“We had a lot of time and space, we could pass the ball quicker I think, but our crosses were not so good and the last pass of our midfielders were not so good.“We knew before the game it would be a tough game because we had seen already in the home match [when United won 2-1] that it is difficult to beat Stoke City.“They a well-organised team that play with long balls with Crouch and Diouf and Walters, and also today Arnautovic played a very good game.“We knew it would be difficult to defend and you have seen that today.” Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa on Tuesday defended his use of a private corporate jet to fly to Detroit last week for the funeral of civil-rights leader Rosa Parks. “Because of the short notice, the mayor has to use a private plane to fly back there as the city’s representative,” spokeswoman Janelle Erickson said. “It did not violate any city or state laws, and the mayor is reimbursing the company for his fare and that of (Deputy Mayor) Carolyn Webb de Macias.” Villaraigosa was invited to give a eulogy, joining former President Clinton, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and others to pay tribute to Parks. Erickson said the $438 that would have been paid for a commercial flight for Villaraigosa and De Macias will be paid to Ameriquest to cover their air fares. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The money will come from the mayor’s officeholder account, she said. “This was a unique situation, and there wasn’t time to book a commercial flight,” Erickson said. “And it might happen again in the future if the mayor is asked to be somewhere at a moment’s notice.” Erickson said two Los Angeles police officers, who are part of the mayor’s security detail, were also on the flight. Their fares will be covered by the LAPD travel budget, she said. Ameriquest is a financial services firm that contributed to Villaraigosa while he was Assembly speaker and it hired him as a consultant in 2001 and 2002. The company – which is facing lawsuits on allegations of inflating costs to borrowers – recently hired former Assemblyman Mike Roos as a lobbyist to the city. Roos was one of the first city commissioners removed by Villaraigosa after he took office July 1 as part of his campaign pledge to remove lobbyists from city panels. Roos had been serving on the Recreation and Parks Commission. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!