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Updated: 20 min 43 sec ago

Socceroos rise to 43rd in latest Fifa world rankings

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 21:13
  • Ange Postecoglou’s side move up seven places after Syria win
  • Ranking means Australia could be seeded at tournament in Russia

Australia’s progress to the brink of the World Cup finals has been recognised by Fifa with a rise up the world rankings to 43rd following the Socceroos’ Asian playoff win last week.

Ange Postecoglou’s side beat Syria, ranked 77, over two legs to set up a final qualifying playoff with Honduras in November and lay the platform for an unprecedented third seeding at the 2018 tournament – should Australia reach Russia.

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Bernard Tomic slumps in qualifying for ATP event in Antwerp

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 18:53
  • Former world No17 loses in straight sets to Aldin Šetkić
  • Risks missing out on automatic qualification for Australian Open

Bernard Tomic’s forgettable tennis season has continued, with the 24-year-old losing in the final round of qualifying for the Antwerp ATP 250 event.

Tomic, currently the world No144, lost 6-7 (3-7), 5-7 to 29-year-old Aldin Šetkić of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

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Anthony Joshua to fight Carlos Takam after Kubrat Pulev is forced to withdraw

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 17:48
• Bulgarian challenger suffers shoulder injury in training
• Joshua will now face France’s Takam on 28 October

Carlos Takam has replaced Kubrat Pulev as the challenger to world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua on 28 October after a shoulder injury forced the Bulgarian to withdraw.

Pulev had been the mandatory challenger to the IBF and WBA champion but the 36-year-old Bulgarian will miss out on the world title fight in Cardiff after hurting his shoulder while sparring.

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Aaron Rodgers to miss 'significant' time after collarbone surgery

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 17:32
  • Green Bay quarterback broke collarbone on Sunday afternoon
  • Packers admit star’s season may well be over

Aaron Rodgers will undergo surgery after breaking his collarbone on Sunday, the Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy says.

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FA inquiry leader receives counselling after hearing victims’ accounts of abuse

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 17:30
• Clive Sheldon QC has taken up the FA’s offer of support
• Independent inquiry has already met 15 survivors

The details relayed by child sex abuse victims to the Football Association’s independent inquiry are so harrowing that the barrister leading the investigation has begun seeing a counsellor to look after his own mental health.

Clive Sheldon QC and some members of his team have taken up the offer of psychological help, paid for by the FA, as part of the inquiry into abuse suffered by players from the 1970s to 2005. The inquiry, which began last December following allegations first made by Andy Woodward to the Guardian, has now met 15 survivors and will likely hear from a further 20 to 30 victims.

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Leicester’s Riyad Mahrez rediscovers ruthless streak to peg back West Brom

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 17:00

Riyad Mahrez repaid the faith of his manager, Craig Shakespeare, with a late equaliser to deny West Brom victory as Leicester avoided the ignominy of three successive home defeats by the skin of their teeth. Trailing to Nacer Chadli’s free-kick in the 63rd minute and with his side marooned in the relegation zone, the Leicester manager’s decision to recall the player who did so much to inspire the famous title-winning season was eventually vindicated by a brilliant solo finish 10 minutes from time. Leicester have now not won in in six Premier League matches and are still two points from safety, although at least the way they finished this match will give Shakespeare something to build on.

With only the victory over Brighton back in August to show from their three previous Premier League fixtures here so far this season, the pressure was more on Leicester to emerge with something from this given their lowly position in the table before kick-off. Shakespeare responded by making three changes to the side that drew 0-0 at Bournemouth before the international break, with Jamie Vardy back after a groin injury and Mahrez restored to the starting lineup despite some indifferent displays since his failed attempt engineer a move away in the summer.

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Warren Gatland hits back at sniping from his Lions flanker Sean O’Brien

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 17:00
• Ireland forward had claimed a whitewash of the All Blacks was feasible
• Wales coach rules out third spell in charge of Lions on 2021 tour

Warren Gatland said he was hurt by Sean O’Brien’s public criticism of the coaching on the summer British & Irish Lions tour to New Zealand and revealed he would not be seeking the head coach’s position for a third successive trip in 2021 because there were times this year when he “hated” aspects of the job.

Gatland was speaking for the first time since O’Brien made his remarks in a radio interview a month ago. The Ireland flanker, who started all three Tests, claimed a more attacking gameplan from the start would have delivered a 3-0 series whitewash, that the backs coach, Rob Howley, struggled to get his message across and that in future the Lions should have the best coaches.

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Harry Kane can be one-club man like Roma legend Totti, says Pochettino

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 15:26
• Spurs manager says Kane was very emotional watching Totti’s final game
• Pochettino discusses his own future before Real Madrid match

Mauricio Pochettino has revealed that Harry Kane was caught up in the emotion that surrounded Francesco Totti’s final game for Roma and the Tottenham Hotspur manager expressed hope that his striker could also prove to be a one-club man.

Related: Harry Kane threatens to transcend Tottenham as Ronaldo showdown looms | David Hytner

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Leicester City v West Brom: Premier League – live!

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 14:47

7.47pm BST

So Shakespeare plays a 4-4-2 with Vardy and Iheanacho up front together. He says the onus is with his side to be attacking, but to watch for West Brom counterattacks.

Pulis appears to be playing 4-3-3 and Chadli seems fit to start. Pulis says he has been desperate to get him in the team and is hoping he’ll work well with Gibbs up the right.

7.41pm BST

Leicester City: Schmeichel, Simpson, Maguire, Morgan, Fuchs, Ndidi, Iborra, Mahrez, Albrighton, Iheanacho, Vardy.
Subs: Chilwell, Gray, King, Hamer, Amartey, Slimani, Okazaki.

West Brom: Myhill, Dawson, Hegazi, Evans, Gibbs, Livermore, Krychowiak, Barry, Chadli, Rodriguez, Rondon.
Subs: Nyom, Yacob, Phillips, Brunt, McClean, McAuley, Palmer.

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Frankie Dettori: the Turf’s 46-year-old comeback kid predicts more big-race success | Frankie Dettori

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 14:43
Jockey who has won a Derby, a King George and two Arcs since almost quitting aims to ride until past 50 – and has a special target at Ascot’s Champions Day

From the security of a hugely successful 2017, Frankie Dettori reflects on the desperate days of 2013, when it seemed as though his storied career had only a few pages left to run and not very exciting ones, at that. “I was weeks away from actually retiring,” he said on Monday, chatting happily on his way to a quiet afternoon at Yarmouth, where he would win the big race with his only ride of the day.

Three minutes’ work, another useful chunk of prize money in the bank and the Italian was able to make the short journey back to his Newmarket home, doubtless reflecting all the way on the pleasures of being back at the top of the racing world, looking forward to some fine Champions Day rides at Ascot this Saturday. But there was a point, four years ago, when such good times seemed gone for ever.

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Will Colin Kaepernick's lawsuit win him a place back in the NFL?

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 14:26

The former 49ers quarterback has accused NFL team owners of colluding to keep him out of the league. But how likely is he to win his case?

Colin Kaepernick has filed a grievance under the NFL’s Collective Bargaining Agreement, a further escalation in his tense relationship with the league that began with his refusal to stand for the playing of the national anthem in protest of the treatment of racial injustice in the United States.

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Dejan Lovren accuses Romelu Lukaku of deliberately kicking him in the face

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 13:59
• Liverpool defender says Manchester United player ‘could move away’
• FA backs referee in deciding Lukaku should not face any action

Dejan Lovren has made the startling claim that Romelu Lukaku deliberately kicked him in the face during Liverpool’s goalless draw against Manchester United.

The Croatia international made the accusation in Slovenia, where Liverpool are preparing for Tuesday’s Champions League tie against Maribor, after it was confirmed Lukaku will face no action over a seemingly accidental collision between the pair on Saturday.

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FA Cup first-round draw – live!

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 13:40

5.54pm BST

1 Accrington Stanley, 2 AFC Wimbledon, 3 Barnet, 4 Blackburn Rovers, 5 Blackpool, 6 Bradford City, 7 Bristol Rovers, 8 Bury, 9 Cambridge United, 10 Carlisle United, 11 Charlton Athletic, 12 Cheltenham Town, 13 Chesterfield, 14 Colchester United, 15 Coventry City, 16 Crawley Town, 17 Crewe Alexandra, 18 Doncaster Rovers, 19 Exeter City, 20 Fleetwood Town, 21 Forest Green Rovers, 22 Gillingham, 23 Grimsby Town, 24 Lincoln City, 25 Luton Town, 26 Mansfield Town, 27 Milton Keynes Dons, 28 Morecambe, 29 Newport County, 30 Northampton Town, 31 Notts County, 32 Oldham Athletic, 33 Oxford United, 34 Peterborough United, 35 Plymouth Argyle, 36 Port Vale, 37 Portsmouth, 38 Rochdale, 39 Rotherham United, 40 Scunthorpe United, 41 Shrewsbury Town, 42 Southend United, 43 Stevenage, 44 Swindon Town, 45 Walsall, 46 Wigan Athletic, 47 Wycombe Wanderers, 48 Yeovil Town, 49 Tranmere Rovers, 50 Solihull Moors or Ossett Town, 51 Hartlepool United, 52 Shaw Lane, 53 Chorley or Boston United, 54 AFC Telford United, 55 Gainsborough Trinity, 56 Nantwich Town or Kettering Town, 57 Gateshead, 58 Guiseley, 59 AFC Fylde, 60 Kidderminster Harriers, 61 Hyde United, 62 Macclesfield Town, 63 Brackley Town or Billericay Town, 64 Dagenham & Redbridge or Leyton Orient, 65 Hereford, 66 Aldershot Town, 67 Bath City or Chelmsford City, 68 Oxford City, 69 Maidenhead United, 70 Heybridge Swifts, 71 Woking or Concord Rangers, 72 Truro City, 73 Dover Athletic or Bromley, 74 Slough Town, 75 Dartford, 76 Boreham Wood, 77 Maidstone United or Enfield Town, 78 Leatherhead, 79 Sutton United, 80 East Thurrock United or Ebbsfleet United.

10.34am BST

There are 80 balls in the bag and 90 teams represented. There are three teams from the eighth tier of the football pyramid in there and, in the shape of Truro City, there is the first Cornish side to reach the Cup since 1969. It’s the FA Cup first-round draw!

Clubs from the English Football League join the draw for the first time today, meaning the chance of a good giant-killing or two when the ties are played on the weekend of 3-6 November and each winning club gets £18,000 to put towards a few tins of paint for the old stands etc.

Related: Dean Saunders and Brian Clough – a story that went viral but doesn’t finish there | Daniel Taylor

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Extraordinary response to Aluko allegations puts Greg Clarke in firing line | Daniel Taylor

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 13:31
The curt, dismissive, almost implausible response sent by the FA chairman on receiving an email detailing Eni Aluko’s allegations against Mark Sampson means his appearance in front of MPs may be his final act in the job

“I’ve no idea why you are sending me this. Perhaps you could enlighten me?”

It’s not the response that would ordinarily be expected from the leader of an organisation that purports to take the fight against racism seriously and had just been sent a six-page document claiming that a cover-up involving a racial allegation had taken place within his own structure.

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Wallabies' rugby league converts out to prove they are a risk worth taking | Bret Harris

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 13:00

As the great league experiment of the early 2000s showed, there can be rewards amid the risks with players from the 13-a-side code

Could the Wallabies be on the cusp of a rugby league-led recovery? Should Karmichael Hunt be selected alongside Israel Folau and Marika Koroibete for the third Bledisloe Cup Test against the All Blacks in Brisbane on Saturday night, it will be the first time three high profile rugby league converts have played together for the Wallabies since Wendell Sailor, Lote Tuqiri and Mat Rogers.

And it would not be a coincidence. Like former Wallabies coach Eddie Jones, who recruited Sailor, Tuqiri and Rogers, current Australia coach Michael Cheika is fascinated with rugby league. Cheika loves watching the game and incorporating NRL team plays into the Wallabies’ attack. He would be itching to get Folau, Koroibete and Hunt onto the field at the same time.

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Newcastle United put up for sale as Mike Ashley seeks swift exit

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 12:34
• Ashley instructs club officials to issue statement clarifying intentions
• Option of staggered payments also being offered to potential suitors

Mike Ashley has confirmed that he is actively attempting to sell Newcastle United. Although the Sports Direct owner has been open to offers for the club since the turn of this year, Ashley has now instructed St James’ Park officials to issue a formal statement clarifying his intentions for a swift exit.

Justin Barnes, a lawyer and long-time Ashley associate, has been involved with Newcastle throughout 2017, with his role primarily involving identifying a buyer. It is understood non-disclosure agreements have been signed with more than one party – with interest believed to have come from China – but no formal offer has yet been made or accepted.

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Harry Kane is a 'complete player', says Real Madrid's Zinedine Zidane – video

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 12:09

Zinedine Zidane has hailed Harry Kane as a complete footballer before Real Madrid’s Champions League match against Tottenham at the Bernabéu. Kane is in superb form, having scored 15 goals in his last 11 games for club and country

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The Fiver | Like a stag-do on a trolley dash at Sergio Georgini’s

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 11:44

In today’s Fiver: lookalikes, Roberto Mancini and fish being hurled at fans

It’s been two seasons since Pep Guardiola arrived in Manchester with a penchant for dressing his entire squad and staff in exactly the same clothes as him, thus making their arrival at grounds look like a stag do on a trolley dash at Sergio Georgini’s. In fact, he’s got so far under David Silva’s skin that the midfielder has taken a razor to his head and had a bit of a go at a beard, in what appears to be an attempt at getting himself work as a Pep lookalike at Fake Faces, “the UK’s leading lookalikes agency” (instant quotes available, though it may have been a while since ‘David Beckham’ or ‘Juan Seba Verón’ had many enquiries).

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From Zaha to Mourinho: the Premier League happiness index – Football Weekly

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 11:33

Max Rushden and co on the upsets at Palace and Watford, Ronald Koeman’s embarrassment of riches, Andy Carroll’s thinking and naked Norwegians

Rate, review, share on Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud, Audioboom, Mixcloud, Acast and Stitcher, and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and email.

Max Rushden is joined by returning Irishman Barry Glendenning, fake Irishman Lars Sivertsen and the returning Englishman Dominic Fifield to review all of the weekend’s big action.

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Revealed: the 14-word email that puts FA’s Greg Clarke under fresh scrutiny

Mon, 10/16/2017 - 11:05
• Chairman issued curt reply to PFA’s Aluko document in Mark Sampson case
• ‘I’ve no idea why you are sending me this. Perhaps you could enlighten me?’

Greg Clarke’s position as chairman of the Football Association is likely to come under severe scrutiny after new revelations about his handling of the alleged‑racism scandal and cover-up that has led to his organisation being summoned to a parliamentary inquiry to explain the Mark Sampson affair.

Two weeks after Clarke publicly praised Eni Aluko for reporting alleged racism within the England Women’s set-up, the Guardian can reveal his 14-word reply after initially being told of allegations that the FA had put together an internal inquiry that was “not a genuine search for the truth” and “designed to close down the complaint and absolve Mark Sampson”.

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