Christian Eriksen set to return for Tottenham at West Ham

• Mauricio Pochettino says midfielder will either start or be sub• Manager says he would welcome new signings in JanuaryChristian Eriksen will be available for Tottenham’s visit to West Ham on Saturday, according to Mauricio Pochettino, despite the uncertainty surrounding his abdominal injury.The midfielder has sat out Spurs’ past four matches and there were fears he could face an extended lay-off when the Denmark manager, Åge Hareide, said the problem could become “chronic”. Hareide suggested Denmark’s marquee player had carried the injury for a little while. 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...



Football transfer rumours: Neymar dreaming of Messi reunion at Barça?

Today’s fluff needs something to rely onNeymar is sad and bored and lonely in Paris and is dreaming of a return to Barcelona, says Mundo Deportivo. “Paris is a great city,” it notes, “but its climate is not that of Barcelona, nor is the Parc des Princes the Camp Nou or the Seine the Mediterranean.” The Brazilian continues to shower his former teammates, whom he left so willingly in 2017, with messages concerning a move back to Spain. “Neymar longs for his old club and his old teammates, especially Lionel Messi, as well as his old life in Barcelona and the greatness of his old club,” it writes. These feelings have never been reciprocated, with many at Barcelona still scarred by the betrayal they saw in the Brazilian’s departure. “However, lately this perception has changed,” Mundo Deportivo continues, “and the return of the Brazilian is already being considered as a plausible possibility.”That’s as may be. But several members of the Barcelona team, including Gerard Piqué, Lionel Messi and Samuel Umtiti, appear to think priorities should lie elsewhere and are campaigning for the club to buy Paul Pogba, says the Daily Mail. “Manager Ernesto Valverde is also keen,” it reports. So with the manager, their greatest player and a host of other dressing-room regulars all behind the move, and the club coffers assumed to be bulging with booty, it looks as if the move is bound to happen – except the Mail also reports that profits are down to a meagre £10m, and not everyone is in favour of the deal happening anyway. “Barcelona scouts are split,” it says, “with some believing the club’s slick passing game requires midfielders who take fewer risks on the ball and have greater positional sense.” Continue reading...



Watch: Extreme wakeboarding in Greenland

Watch as Russian wakeboarder Nikita Martyanov decided to take it to the extreme by riding across icebergs on the west coast of Greenland.



Shaun Marsh departs early as Australia face second Test defeat to Pakistan

• Day three: Pakistan 282 & 400-9d; Australia 145 & 47-1• Marsh out early after Australians were set 538 to win In the early evening Abu Dhabi sunlight, in a wash of warm mango colour that lit up the grass and the grandstands of the Sheikh Zayed Stadium, we may just have seen the last of Shaun Marsh’s Test career. Related: Danish Kaneria admits guilt in Mervyn Westfield spot-fixing case after six years Continue reading...



Manchester United defender Luke Shaw signs new five-year deal

• The England left-back has faced criticism from José Mourinho• His career at Old Trafford has been restricted by injuryLuke Shaw has signed a new five-year deal at Manchester United in a development he admitted would have seemed “impossible” not long ago. The 23-year-old has faced public criticism from José Mourinho and has been limited to 50 Premier League appearances at United in nearly four and a half years by a serious injury, form and fitness issues. Continue reading...



Wayne Rooney's stunning free-kick continues DC United's remarkable revival

Team were bottom of Eastern Conference when Rooney arrivedEnglishman has scored 10 goals in 18 apperancesWayne Rooney rolled back the years as his stunning 30-yard free-kick earned DC United a 1-0 home win over Toronto. The former England captain bent a glorious effort over the wall and into the top corner in the 18th minute.Victory strengthened United’s hold on a play-off spot in the Eastern Conference, they are now four points ahead of Montreal Impact for the sixth and final playoff place with two matches remaining. A victory in their next match would seal their place in the postseason, a remarkable achievement given they were at the bottom of the Eastern Conference when Rooney joined the club. Continue reading...



Online aggression skews debate over suspended West Ham youth coach | Jacob Steinberg

Disreputable or an individual’s right? Battle lines on social media have sent the temperature soaring regarding the actions of West Ham’s Mark PhillipsWhen Kick It Out contacted West Ham about the youth coach who went on the Democratic Football Lads Alliance march through central London last Saturday, football’s anti‑discrimination organisation was not trying to stir the pot. Its aim was not to land Mark Phillips in hot water. It had an obligation to act after receiving an anonymous report about Phillips appearing to align himself with an organisation accused of Islamophobia and of having links with far-right groups.Yet the temperature inevitably rose on Twitter as soon as the Guardian broke the story about Phillips on Tuesday morning. For people who see nothing wrong with the Democratic Football Lads Alliance, a group condemned by anti-racist campaigners, it was a case of political correctness gone mad. Because it had acted on an anonymous complaint against the coach of West Ham’s Under-18s, Kick It Out was accused of being snowflakes who wanted to shut down free speech and, even more bizarrely, of being the real fascists. Continue reading...



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.



Bolt 'turns down' contract with Maltese champions Valletta FC

Usain Bolt's agent says the eight-time Olympic champion has turned down a two-year deal from Maltese champions Valletta FC.



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...



Take The Ball, Pass The Ball: trailer for documentary on Barcelona's Guardiola years – video

Lionel Messi, Thierry Henry, Xavi and many other top footballers have shared their reasons as to why they believe Barcelona are the greatest football club in the world. In the documentary, Take The Ball, Pass The Ball, former and current Barça players look back at when Pep Guardiola led the team to 14 trophies in four years from 2008-2012.The all-star cast reveal the tension of the bitter Guardiola-Mourinho rivalry, the importance of Johan Cruyff’s vision and blueprint for success, the emotion of Abidal’s fight back from cancer and how Messi was almost rejected by the club as a teenager.Take the Ball Pass the Ball will be available in OurScreen cinemas from 9th November, then on DVD and Digital Download from 12th November Continue reading...



Hamilton in all-time top five F1 drivers - Alonso

Four-time world champion Lewis Hamilton is one of the five greatest champions in Formula 1 history, says Fernando Alonso.