Mauricio Pochettino: sometimes it is better not to sign players in January

• Manager would not be disappointed if Spurs made no signings• ‘It takes time for players to fit in with the team’Mauricio Pochettino has said he would not be disappointed if Tottenham failed to strengthen their squad in January because he is mindful of the integration difficulties that mid-season signings face.The manager took Lucas Moura from Paris Saint-Germain last January in a £25m deal and the winger needed time to come to terms with what was demanded of him. Pochettino started Lucas in only five matches in all competitions over the second half of last season but this time out he has been a regular who has contributed significantly. Continue reading...

15-12-2018



Adetomiwa Edun: The man who plays Fifa's Alex Hunter

Adetomiwa Edun is the actor who plays Alex Hunter, the young star of the Fifa video game franchise. What is it like being the face of the world's best known fictional footballer?

15-12-2018



Talking Horses: Frodon can bag Gold Cup prize on big day at Cheltenham

The selection rarely runs a bad race at the track and could well have the class to carry top weight to victoryThe BetVictor Gold Cup at Cheltenham in November is often the best guide to the big handicap chase at the December meeting, even if the former is staged on the old course at the home of jumps racing while the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup is on the new.It is the placed horses and the unlucky ones that tend to come to the fore a month later, however, and the top-class Exotic Dancer, who was twice placed in the Gold Cup, was the last to complete the double in 2006. That does not bode well for Baron Alco, who enjoyed an easy time of it in front in the BetVictor this season and is 6lb higher in the official ratings. Continue reading...

15-12-2018



From the Tavern to the Palace: the decade since darts went large – video

It’s now more than a decade since the PDC world championship moved from the Circus Tavern in Purfleet to London’s Alexandra Palace and the game of darts has grown beyond all expectations. We talked to a number of the figures behind the growth of the game both in front and behind the cameras Continue reading...

15-12-2018



Vote for your World Sport Star of the Year 2018

Vote now to help decide the winner of the BBC's World Sport Star of the Year award.

15-12-2018



Talking Horses: Jockeys take issue with BHA review into fatalities

As racing professionals gathered at the track at the centre of the review, a number criticised some of the recommendationsTensions within the racing industry began to surface on Friday in response to the bulky review into equine fatalities published this week by the sport’s ruling body. As racing professionals gathered at the track at the centre of the review, several were minded to criticise some of the recommendations and the manner in which the review was carried out, though most fought shy of doing so on the record.But the body which represents the interests of jockeys acknowledged, when asked, that it was not entirely happy about the document sent out on Wednesday by the British Horseracing Authority. “It was important that decisions were evidence based,” said Paul Struthers, chief executive of the Professional Jockeys Association, “and it is unfortunate that, when it comes to some of the recommendations impacting our members, the BHA has chosen to ignore this evidence. Continue reading...

15-12-2018



Football should not carry the can for society’s ills – but can help to remedy them | Barney Ronay

Raheem Sterling kickstarted a welcome debate on racism this week and while the game should not shoulder all the blame perhaps everyone in football has learned somethingTo be fair to the more risque element of Chelsea’s matchday support, they have been very thorough this week in representing the full political spectrum. On the one hand an ad hoc hostile environment for Anglo-Jamaican British citizens. On the other a little throwaway antisemitism on Thursday night in Hungary. This is exemplary political balance and frankly the BBC for one could learn a great deal from it.All that remains to complete the circle is for Sterling’s alleged Stamford Bridge abuser to resign from the East Stand and then turn up six months later as an outside Windrush Ticket bet for the next Conservative prime minister. And for Jeremy Corbyn to condemn, with a sad sigh, not specifically these Yid chants but “all kinds of offensive football chanting everywhere”. Continue reading...

15-12-2018



NRL urged to ban for life players convicted of sexual assault and domestic violence

Gender adviser Catharine Lumby calls for ‘extremely tough’ approach after string of recent chargesNRL players convicted of serious offences such as sexual assault should be banned for life, the league’s gender advisor and a former team captain says.Former Canberra Raiders captain Alan Tongue also believes the NRL should consider decreasing the salary cap for players in response to a spate of recent alleged sexual assault and domestic violence incidents. Continue reading...

15-12-2018



Aston Villa remove Kevin MacDonald from coaching after new bullying claims

• Gareth Farrelly alleges he and others were targeted in 1990s• Villa launch independent investigation and report claims to FAAston Villa have suspended their long-serving youth coach Kevin MacDonald from working with players, after a former graduate of the club, Gareth Farrelly, came forward to tell the Guardian about his claims of relentless bullying from MacDonald in the mid-1990s.Farrelly accused the coach of “incredibly aggressive, constant verbal and physical bullying” and said it “took me to a place at 20 that nobody should have to go to. And I wouldn’t wish it on anybody.” Continue reading...

15-12-2018



Formula E gears up: new batteries, Felipe Massa and ‘Mario Kart’ boosts | Giles Richards

There are new names, street circuits and a new ‘attack mode’ but batteries that last an entire race may be the key innovationFormula E has always enjoyed grand city centre destinations as a central tenet of the all-electric series. Beginning its fifth season on Saturday, however, there is a sense that it is in a position to deliver the drama such grand stages demand, now boasting technology, drivers and manufacturers coming together with greater coherence and credibility than ever.The new season opens in Riyadh, the first of 13 races held across 12 meetings. There will be no race in the UK, which has not held FE since its last appearance in London’s Battersea Park in the second season, but other cities including New York, Paris, Rome, Hong Kong, Berlin and Monaco will all play host to the series that held its first round in 2014. Four years on the racing has fundamentally changed for the better. Continue reading...

15-12-2018