APN podcast: Unpaid wages and football disappointments

This week's podcast looks at whether security guards left behind by Finland in Afghanistan can expect their wages any time soon. 

Photo of person cycling in snowy weather on city street, featuring the All Points North podcast logo. Image: Mihalis Koulompis / Yle

When Finland withdrew staff from its embassy in Afghanistan, some of those who worked there were left behind.

They were due salary for a fortnight's work in August, but that still hasn't been paid. With the economic situation in Afghanistan deteriorating, this week's APN podcast tried to discover if they might get their money soon.

We also asked Rose Wangui from the Finnish Cyclists' Federation why it's good to cycle in winter, discussed the current Covid situation and asked whether it's possible to look stylish and stay warm in the Finnish winter.

You can listen to the full podcast using the embedded player here, via Yle Areena, Spotify (siirryt toiseen palveluun), Apple Podcasts (siirryt toiseen palveluun) or on your usual podcast player using the RSS feed.

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This week saw the culmination of Finland's campaign to qualify for the men's World Cup in Qatar. They just fell short at the last, but given the ethical issues around the tournament (siirryt toiseen palveluun) that might be considered a blessing in disguise.

We asked Rich Nelson from the Finnish Football Show what he made of the big match against France this week, which Finland lost 2-0 after goals from Karim Benzema and Kyllian Mbappé.

"They did quite well to handle France for an hour or so, and then the quality told," said Nelson. "It's good that Finland could go toe to toe with a team like France, they looked really good."

Media reports suggested that the facilities at the freshly renovated stadium did not stand up to the stress test of a capacity crowd. Toilets were over capacity and difficult to find, while it also took a long time to enter the stadium.

Overall, Nelson wasn't impressed.

"To the end user, the average Joe, it looks like a lick of paint a roof and some new kiosks," said Nelson. "Having seen the behind the scenes videos I can see they've spent money elsewhere, in the VIP areas, sporting bits and bobs and restaurants and stuff."

"But for the average football match goer they're not going to get any benefit from that. I think it's a shame that so much time and money were wasted. I think it was closed for five years and we go there and it was exactly the same as last time but the paint was new and we still had to queue 15-20 minutes to use the toilet."

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This week's show was presented by Egan Richardson and Veronica Kontopoulou. It was produced by Mark B. Odom. The audio engineer was Panu Willman.

If you have any questions or would like to share your thoughts, just contact us via WhatsApp on +358 44 421 0909, on our Facebook or Twitter accounts, or at yle.news@yle.fi and allpointsnorth@yle.fi.