Mohamed Salah named BBC African Footballer of the Year 2018

Egypt and Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah is voted the BBC African Footballer of the Year 2018.

14-12-2018

The 100 best female footballers in the world 2018

Seventy-two judges from 30 countries have had their say and here is our top 100 of the best players in the world. In association with The Offside Rule Suzanne Wrack meets our No 1, Pernille HarderInterview: Ballon d’Or winner Ada Hegerberg Continue reading...

14-12-2018

Copa Sudamericana 2018: Atletico Paranaense beat Junior to win Copa Sudamericana

Watch highlights from Atletico Paranaense's victory over Junior FC on penalties to win the Copa Sudamericana trophy in Brazil.

14-12-2018

NFL This Week: Could Amari Cooper send the Dallas Cowboys to the Super Bowl?

After spending a first-round draft pick trading for wide receiver Amari Cooper, have the Dallas Cowboys found the missing piece to their team?

14-12-2018

How the Seahawks dismantled the Legion of Boom and still thrived

Many thought Seattle were set for a spell in the wilderness after breaking up their great defense. But they are on course for this year’s playoffsThe Seahawks are this year’s surprise outfit. It feels like a long, long time since Seattle went through the will-they-won’t-they Earl Thomas dating game; since John Schneider and Pete Carroll detonated the Legion of Boom era and kicked Richard Sherman and Michael Bennett to the curb; since Cliff Avril and Kam Chancellor were forced to retire; since Thomas flipped off his own sideline in an act of understandable insubordination. Seattle entered the season with few expectations. Vegas odds placed their chances at a Super Bowl a hair ahead of the Browns, and any Seahawks discussion elicited a shrug. Unless, of course, you wanted to talk about the glory days and how different (read: boring) this year was going to be. Continue reading...

14-12-2018

F1: Quality of racing could improve by 20% in 2019, says Ross Brawn

Ross Brawn, Formula 1's head of motorsport, says various car changes in 2019 could result in a 20% improvement in the quality of racing.

14-12-2018

Anastasia Dobromyslova: ‘Being a girl, I’ve had to fight for my spot in darts’

Ellesmere Port-based Russian is one of two women who have qualified for the PDC event at Alexandra Palace from ThursdayAnastasia Dobromyslova smiles as she remembers the first time she played darts, as a 12-year‑old in her home city of Tver, just over 100 miles from Moscow, and realised she had an unerring knack for hitting trebles and doubles – and beating the older boys at her youth club. “I wasn’t very well liked,” she laughs. “I think that’s what toughened me up, because I’ve always had to be amongst the boys. Being a girl I have had to fight for my spot.”Not a great deal has changed in the intervening two decades. But having qualified for one of two new women’s spots at this year’s expanded PDC World Championship, which begins at Alexandra Palace on Thursday, the 34-year-old Dobromyslova intends to make the most of her opportunity. “You don’t realise how many emotions I have,” she says. “I’m excited, I’m nervous and I know playing in front of thousands of people will be challenging. But with a bit of luck, who knows what could happen?” Continue reading...

14-12-2018

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

This week's sport on the BBC includes the final round of matches in the group stages of the Champions League, European rugby union and the Sports Personality of the Year Awards.

14-12-2018

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...

14-12-2018

Martin Dubravka chooses his Newcastle United band-mates

Newcastle United goalkeeper Martin Dubravka grew up attending music school, but which of his teammates would he choose to form a team band?

14-12-2018

Pete Shelley's Tour de force, Miami's Miracle and Premier Passions | Classic YouTube

This week’s roundup also features Paul Sherwen, NHL deflections and Dean Jones’s very bad idea1) It wasn’t always widely known, but Buzzcocks’ brilliant Pete Shelley, who died this past week, wrote the music for the iconic Channel 4 Tour de France theme, itself taken from within 1984 track Give It To Me. Another sad passing this week was Paul Sherwen. It’s well worth a listen to the Cycling Podcast’s tribute, while Sherwen recalls how he met his broadcasting partner Phil Liggett.2) The Miami Miracle! Obviously there’s already a Tecmo Super Bowl version out there. Gronk’s still stumbling. More laterals: here’s the Music City Miracle, which always features highly among some of the NFL’s most famous. There are more in college football, including … Miami (!) v Duke, Trinity v Millsaps and the classic: Cal v Stanford. Watch out for that band! More on The Play. Continue reading...

14-12-2018

Phil Neville: 'To be told I knew nothing was incredibly disrespectful'

The 41-year-old reflects on a year in charge of England Women and how he plans to lead them to World Cup glory next summer“Flown by. Absolutely flown by,” Phil Neville says as he reflects on his time in charge of the England women’s team. It has been almost a year and, as is the case with any job, there have been highs and lows, both of which Neville is willing and able to speak about on a clear winter’s afternoon at the national team’s base at St George’s Park.Pride and ambition radiate from the former Manchester United defender and no more so than when conversation turns to next summer’s World Cup in France. England qualified for the tournament with victory over Wales in August and, following last Saturday’s draw, have been placed in the same group as Scotland, Argentina and Japan. It starts on 7 June and for the manager the target is clear: to get to the final in Lyon a month later and win the competition for the first time. Continue reading...

14-12-2018

The Spin | Big Bash’s flipping bats recall stories of cunning ploys with tossed coins

When you look closely at the ritual, it begins to seem odd that cricket lets blind luck and ‘dynamical bias’ play such a large partWhen he was 14, Persi Diaconis packed a fresh deck of cards and a spare pair of socks into a knapsack and ran away from home to become a magician’s assistant. He spent the next few years as an apprentice with Dai Vernon, whose sleight of hand was so smart, so sharp, he even beat Harry Houdini, who famously claimed he could pick any magic trick on the third go, until Vernon fooled him seven times in a row.They used to call Vernon “the Professor”, and now they do Diaconis, too. Because that is what he is. The Mary V Sunseri professor of statistics and mathematics, to be exact, at Stanford, where he has been continuing his lifelong study of chance and probability. Continue reading...

14-12-2018

The Fiver | How best to avoid a hiding with a team he clearly thinks isn’t up to the job

Sign up now! Sign up now! Sign up now? Sign up now!The Fiver would give several pennies for the thoughts of José Mourinho as he sits in the suite he has called home for the past two-and-a-half years at the Lowry Hotel. With the thrill of frightening staff by dressing as a zombie using his shower curtain, snaffling complimentary biscuits and tungsten-tipped screws long gone and being able to take apart and reassemble his Corby Trouser Press quicker than a blindfolded soldier field-stripping an AK47 assault rifle, the Manchester United manager has plenty of time to dwell on the vicissitudes of life, not least how best to avoid a hiding against Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday with a team he clearly thinks isn’t up to the job. Continue reading...

14-12-2018

Canelo Álvarez awaits in Rocky Fielding's unlikely shot at glory

Few will give the 31-year-old Liverpudlian a chance on Saturday when he climbs through the ropes at Madison Square Garden to face Canelo ÁlvarezWhen Saúl “Canelo” Álvarez announced the first opponent of his blockbuster 11-fight, $365m contract with upstart streaming service DAZN, the collective reaction from the general public was unanimous: Who?Few beyond dedicated boxing fans were familiar with Rocky Fielding, the lesser of the two super middleweight champions recognized by the World Boxing Association, the sanctioning body that hands out belts seemingly at will and has done more to cheapen the currency of a world title than any one factor (and it is a high bar). Continue reading...

14-12-2018

Liverpool 'have to be angry' against Manchester United, says Klopp – video

The Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has said that his side will be angry ahead of their game with Manchester United on Sunday, adding that ‘we fight for our points’. When asked about his counterpart José Mourinho Klopp praised what he called ‘one of the most successful managers in the world’ Continue reading...

14-12-2018

Ashley Giles replaces Andrew Strauss as managing director of England men's cricket

Former England spinner Ashley Giles replaces Andrew Strauss as managing director of England men's cricket.

14-12-2018