Messi & Ronaldo then ... ? Vote for your third-best player in the world

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have won the past 10 men's Ballon d'Or awards - but who did you decide is the third-best player in the world?



The British hammer thrower with a metal hip eyeing medal at Tokyo Olympics

Two-time Commonwealth gold medallist Mark Dry could not walk without pain. Now, after having his hip resurfaced, he is targeting Olympic glory.



Lewis Hamilton hails Formula One ‘Godfather’ Juan Manuel Fangio

• Hamilton is on the verge of matching Fangio’s five world titles• The British driver can clinch the championship in TexasLewis Hamilton says Juan Manuel Fangio is the Formula One “Godfather” as he stands on the verge of history by matching the Argentinian’s championship haul.Hamilton needs to outscore Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel by only eight points in Austin, Texas to clinch his fifth world drivers’ championship with three rounds to spare. Continue reading...



NBA 2018-19 predictions: Greek Freak to peak and Warriors to three-peat

How will LeBron James get on in California? Is Russell Westbrook in decline? Can anyone stop Golden State? Our writers have their sayGiannis Antetokounmpo in Mike Budenholzer’s offense. Milwaukee’s new coach will install a system that complements everything the Greek Freak does well – which is practically everything – and mask his one flaw: perimeter shooting. If it works, Antetokounmpo’s surges up the court will resemble an alien attack rather than a basketball offense. OC Continue reading...



Just when England rugby needs clarity the waters have been muddied | Robert Kitson

Eddie Jones was at his complicated best as he shared the thinking behind his 36-man squad for the autumn internationalsThe big problem with coaching England, believes Eddie Jones, is the media. In a nutshell they ask too many questions. “Anywhere else you do the press conference for about five minutes and then you are done. Here it is two hours of non-stop questioning.” It partially explains, apparently, why he is now naming co-captains who can take turns feeding the daily news beast.Nice try, Eddie, but what a load of old cobblers. Continue reading...



Hart has nothing to prove on Man City return - Dyche

Joe Hart "has nothing to prove" when he returns to Manchester City as an opponent for the first time on Saturday, says Burnley boss Sean Dyche.



Youth Olympics: 'I'm over the moon' - Great Britain's Karol Itauma wins second boxing gold

Karol Itauma says he is "over the moon" after winning Great Britain's second gold medal at the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires.



Sport on the BBC: Best of this week's TV & radio coverage

This week's sport on the BBC includes the United States Grand Prix, the NFL International Series and Premier League action, including Chelsea v Man Utd.



Youth Olympic Games 2018: Caroline Dubois and Karol Itauma win boxing golds

Great Britain end the Youth Olympic Games with three gold medals after Caroline Dubois and Karol Itauma win boxing titles on the final day in Buenos Aires.



England stun Spain, no Khan do and Gibraltar's rocks – Football Weekly Extra

Max Rushden, Barry Glendenning, John Ashdown and Hayley McQueen discuss the Nations League, Wembley, José Mourinho’s latest Chelsea return – and how to do a fitba cornerJoin the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and email.Max Rushden is joined by Barry Glendenning, John Ashdown and Hayley McQueen to run through all the biggest talking points from the Nations League, including England’s stunning first-half performance in Seville, which led to a 3-2 victory. Attention also has to be given to the behaviour of some away fans in the city. Continue reading...



Grand Pardubice Steeplechase: the world's toughest horse race – a photo essay

Photographer Tom Jenkins travelled to Pardubice in the Czech Republic to document the 128th Velka Pardubicka Steeplechase (the Czech Grand National) – the world’s oldest and most difficult cross-country horse raceThe 128th Velka Pardubicka Steeplechase or Grand Pardubice Steeplechase (the Czech Grand National) was first run on 4 November 1874, when 14 runners started the race. The winner, Fantom, ridden by Englishman George Sayers received 11,700 florins for his owner Count von Cramm. The race has been held every year since on the second Sunday in October – except during the two world wars and the 1968 Russian invasion, and it has been abandoned twice due to frost and snow. Continue reading...



Harry Maguire: Leicester defender remains focused and 'ambitious'

England defender Harry Maguire says he wants to win trophies and play in the Champions League, but owes Leicester City for giving him a platform.



Man Utd will thrive again, says Shaw after agreeing new deal

Manchester United left-back Luke Shaw says the club will return to form after he agreed a new five-year deal.



Raheem Sterling and England show value of fearlessness in Spain | Eni Aluko

The Manchester City forward looked almost carefree in Spain and Gareth Southgate’s team need to keep this upEngland delivered an impressive display against Spain on Monday and it was kickstarted by a fine opening goal from Raheem Sterling. I was delighted for him. Few, if any, players have had to put up with as much negative energy from the media in recent years as Sterling and this was his way of showing that despite it all he still has what it takes to score goals for England.A huge part of Sterling’s burden in an England shirt has been dealing with all the critics. That is part of being a professional footballer but the scrutiny on Sterling has gone too far. I’d now like to see those who have criticised Sterling about irrelevant things such as his tattoo and his Poundland purchases give him the praise that is due from a purely footballing point of view. Continue reading...



Nadal and Djokovic need to break silence over Saudi exhibition | Kevin Mitchell

The two players appear to have remained deaf to growing clamour over seeming endorsement of Saudi Arabia amid outrage over disappearance of Jamal KhashoggiRafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, men of conscience and integrity, continue to risk their good name by accepting an invitation to play in a meaningless exhibition in Saudi Arabia, a regime under critical scrutiny for the disappearance of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi.The kidnap-and-murder story has led news bulletins around the world – alongside Saudi Arabia’s involvement in the conflict that has contributed to the famine engulfing Yemen – yet efforts this week by the Guardian to elicit a response from either player over playing in Jeddah on 22 December have proved fruitless. Continue reading...



The 100 best footballers in the world 2017

Our panel of 169 experts from 63 nations compile a list of the greatest male players in 2017. Click on an individual to read more about their year.• Messi edges Ronaldo to No1 | The data behind our 100 | Watch: our top 10• Meet our panel of judges for 2017 | 2016 edition | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 Continue reading...



Thierry Henry forgets about translator during first Monaco press conference – video

Thierry Henry says Pep Guardiola will provide the 'reference' for him as he begins his managerial career at Monaco. The France and Arsenal legend starts his 'dream job' with a trip to Strasbourg in Ligue 1 on Saturday.'This club will always have a big place in my heart,' Henry told reporters on Wednesday. But he did also commit a slight faux pas. He took around four minutes to answer two separate questions in English – forgetting that what he said would need to be translated into French for the mediaThierry Henry checks in at Monaco and aims to emulate Guardiola’s approach Continue reading...