16-12-2018 What is the smallest football ground a European champion has lost at? | The Knowledge

Plus: the longest delay for any new stadium in history and the worst goal difference you can get away with and still qualify in the Champions League. Mail us or tweet @TheKnowledge_GU“Real Madrid recently lost 3-0 to Eibar in a stadium that holds just 7,000 people,” begins Robin Tucker. “That got me thinking: have any former European champions lost a competitive match in a smaller stadium? This would be only counting results after their first European success, so games such as Liverpool’s 1959 defeat to Worcester City would not count.”A fine question, but it’s not even the smallest stadium a former European champion has lost in this season. The 1986 winners Steaua Bucharest, now snappily known as FCSB, have suffered plenty of turmoil recently, including a defeat earlier this month to Sepsi OSK. That was in front of an estimated 2,500 at the 5,200-capacity Stadionul Municipal. Continue reading...

16-12-2018 Advent calendar 2018: Kevin Anderson wins second-longest match in Wimbledon history

Kevin Anderson finally wins the second-longest match in Wimbledon history against American John Isner, after six hours and 36 minutes.

16-12-2018 World sport: 10 photos we liked this week - 22-28 October

A selection of the most striking sports photographs from around the world this week.

16-12-2018 Formula E: Watch highlights of opening race of season in Saudi Arabia

BMW Andretti driver Antonio Felix Da Costa holds off reigning champion Jean-Eric Vergne to win the opening race of the Formula E season in Saudi Arabia.

16-12-2018 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...

16-12-2018 The ugly spectre of racism in football on the rise across Europe

The abuse of Raheem Sterling and antisemitic chanting by Chelsea fans are indicative of a wider picture of unacceptable intolerance, as our continent-wide survey revealsBelgium continues to have significant problems with racism, not confined to football. In February, the Charleroi defender Francis N’Ganga was abused at Club Brugge, and the Standard Liège winger Paul-José M’Poku complained of abuse in successive games at Lokeren and Brugge the same week. “This is unacceptable,” the Belgian FA chairman, Gérard Linard, said. “We are going to sit down with the Pro League to find solutions that work for everyone and tackle the real problem.” In May, 29 people were arrested after fighting broke out following a derby between Antwerp and Beerschot-Wilrijk that featured racist and antisemitic banners and chants, and last month several Standard Liège players, including M’Poku, were racially abused by fans of Kortrijk, the club escaping sanction on a technicality. In September, the Mechelen assistant coach, Frederik Vanderbiest, was banned for three matches and fined €1,500 for racially abusing the Union assistant coach, Abder Ramdane, during a First Division B match. Simon Burnton Continue reading...

16-12-2018 Watford hold on for nervy home win after Cardiff’s frenetic fightback

This was a good win for Watford. Such was the harum-scarum nature of the closing stages, however, that a moment’s reflection was needed in order to be sure. After dominating possession and storming to a 3-0 lead with some sumptuous goals, they almost threw it away in the last 10 minutes. The final moments saw the hosts clinging on to the result, keeping the ball by the corner flag.The time-wasting made Neil Warnock chuckle afterwards and once again his Cardiff side had rattled loftier opponents. Junior Hoilett and Bobby Reid both scored in the last 10 minutes to make the result close but even the Cardiff manager had to admit it was closer than it should have been. “We thought we would try and contain them and then have a go in the last half-hour,” he said. “But you don’t legislate for losing two or three goals by that point.” Continue reading...

16-12-2018 European roundup: Real win amid boos, while Ronaldo seals derby for Juventus

• Real Madrid fans unhappy despite 1-0 win over Rayo Vallecano• Cristiano Ronaldo penalty seals derby victory against TorinoReal Madrid edged a 1-0 win over minnows Rayo Vallecano, earning a third consecutive La Liga victory and rising to third in the table, but they again failed to sparkle and had to endure booing from their unhappy supporters.Karim Benzema beat a poorly constructed offside trap to score the only goal of the game in the 13th minute. The win put Santiago Solari’s side on 29 points, one clear of fourth-placed Sevilla who host Girona on Sunday and two behind leaders Barcelona and Atlético Madrid. Continue reading...

16-12-2018 British yachtswoman eager to race again after capsizing in storm

Susie Goodall, the only woman in the Golden Globe Race, is unfazed despite being rescued in the Southern OceanA British yachtswoman, who was rescued after her boat capsized during a solo, round-the-world race, has said she would do it again “in a heartbeat”.Susie Goodall’s comments were made after arriving on dry land in Chile, in the southern city of Punta Arenas on Friday, where she was met by her mother and brother. The family smiled and hugged before they joined her in an ambulance for a medical check-up in the port city. Continue reading...

16-12-2018 Gareth Farrelly: ‘It was a toxic, bullying culture for young players at Aston Villa’

Midfielder turned lawyer claims coach Kevin MacDonald left a ‘dark shadow’ over players at Villa and says it drove him to suicidal thoughts“It was a culture of verbal and physical bullying, but there were no checks and balances; he operated with impunity … It was like a dark shadow came over.”Gareth Farrelly, now 43 and a qualified lawyer, with a Premier League and international career behind him, is recalling the bullying he says he endured as a young player at Aston Villa in the 1990s from the coach Kevin MacDonald. It was a “relentlessly negative” regime under him. Continue reading...

16-12-2018 Watford 3-2 Cardiff: Warnock describes referee as 'Sunday trainee'

Cardiff manager Neil Warnock describes referee Andy Madley as a "Sunday trainee" after his side's 3-2 defeat against Watford at Vicarage Road.

16-12-2018 Australia build lead despite imperious Virat Kohli century in second Test

Australia 326 & 132-4 (48 overs); India 283Australia lead by 175 runs at stumps on day threeOne thing that Virat Kohli does is makes you feel you’ve witnessed a classic.Not all innings are created equal. Cheteshwar Pujara in Adelaide and Kohli in Perth each made 123. Each faced a similar number of balls. Pujara’s was a perfect display of pacing and patience. Kohli’s felt special in a way all its own. Continue reading...

16-12-2018 'Rugby's like a chessboard with 120kg pieces' - how virtual reality could transform training

Painstaking research, virtual reality and holding the tackle bags in training... an insight into how a top rugby analyst operates.

16-12-2018 Lisa Ashton goes to the oche and the nuns go wild at the PDC World Darts

Ashton took the opening leg in style but her first visit to Alexandra Palace ended in defeatBy 6pm the fairground outside Ally Pally is just beginning to wind down, the ferris wheel has stopped going, the merry-go-round is slowing and there is a sign outside the grotto promising that Santa will be back again tomorrow. So, at that time of night, it’s little kids this way and big kids that, up the hill and on beyond the fair to the Great Hall for the opening night of the PDC World Championship. For a lot of people the trip is a winter tradition now, a little less solemn than the carol service at St Paul’s, a little less sobering than swimming in the Serpentine on Christmas morning.The Championship has junked one of its own old rituals. The walk-on girls are gone. The PDC chairman, Barry Hearn, says he was forced into it by the TV companies. “It’s out of my control,” he said. “We’re living in changing times – the PC brigade, the liberal brigade are out in strength.” Continue reading...

16-12-2018 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...

16-12-2018 Mollie and Rosie Kmita: the twins 'breaking the mould' for women in football – video

Twitter UK has launched a new #WomenInFootball campaign with sisters Rosie and Mollie Kmita telling the story of how they ‘broke the mould’ to earn respect in their sport. Rosie, a professional footballer at West Ham, and Mollie who plays for Gillingham, believe ‘women’s football is going in the right direction’ and hope to inspire the next generation of female players. You can watch all four films in the series here.The 100 best female footballers in the world 2018 Continue reading...

16-12-2018 World Taekwondo Grand Slam: Bianca Walkden & Lauren Williams win gold for GB

Bianca Walkden and Lauren Williams both win gold for Great Britain at the World Taekwondo Grand Slam finals in China.