23-02-2019 Weakened Scotland bidding to expose self-belief of unpredictable France

Despite missing a cluster of key players Scotland believe they can win in Paris for the first time since 1999Having failed to win in Paris so far this century, Scotland will attempt to end that trend on Saturday with something akin to a second-string side. Of the team’s key quartet, only the captain, Greig Laidlaw, is in the squad, Finn Russell having joined Stuart Hogg and Willem Nel on the injury list this week.Factor in other absentees such as Huw Jones,, Ryan Wilson and Hamish Watson, and it may seem that this game is France’s to lose. But that also appeared to be the case at half-time in their last home game, before they went on to surrender a 16-0 lead to Wales. Given such an ignominious collapse was followed by a heavy defeat at Twickenham, it is evident self-belief is in short supply in the French ranks, as Jacques Brunel implied when asked if, by naming his team two days early, he were not giving the Scots an advantage. “After seeing our performance against England, Scotland must be pretty confident anyway,” the head coach said. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Cardiff 1-5 Watford: Neil Warnock laments 'bizarre' penalty call

Cardiff boss Neil Warnock feels the "bizarre" first-half decision not to award his side a penalty affected his players in the second half where they went on to lose 5-1 to Watford.

23-02-2019 Who is the greatest F1 driver ever?

After Lewis Hamilton won his fifth world title on Sunday, BBC Sport is asking you just who is the greatest F1 driver ever?

23-02-2019 The NFL's Kaepernick settlement should just be the start of making amends | Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Hopefully the league can now support the values of the US constitution rather than pandering to those who mistake parochialism for patriotismIn one of my favorite sports movies, Vision Quest, the varsity wrestling coach tells his students they can challenge the best wrestler in any weight class if they want to take his place.“Fairest thing in the world,” he smugly tells them. As soon as one kid raises his hand to make that challenge, the coach quickly dismisses the team, pulls him aside, and says: “You’re out of your mind!” Continue reading...

23-02-2019 '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.

23-02-2019 Wales will not afford England a free ride to potential grand slam | Robert Kitson

After a dominant start to the competition England can expect to face a major examination against Warren Gatland’s teamThe toll booths were removed from the Severn Bridge two months ago but granting a free ride to English rugby teams in Cardiff will never catch on. It explains why the Six Nations retains its passion and lustre, in defiance of societal changes and Britain’s shifting political sands. The desire to make England pay for the perceived crime of being English is always strongest on days like this, regardless of the championship table. Related: Eddie Jones finds a back-row trio who are singing from same song sheet | Andy Bull Continue reading...

23-02-2019 'I won five Champions Leagues and these guys zero': Ronaldo taunts Atlético despite defeat – video

Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to Madrid was an unhappy one with his Juventus side losing 2-0 to Atlético in the Champions League. Ronaldo received plenty of abuse from the home fans and reacted in the mixed zone after the match displaying five fingers to the media, one for each Champions League title he has won. Giménez and Godín put Atlético Madrid in charge against Juventus Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Champions League, angry Ronaldo and a Row 32 penalty – Football Weekly Extra

Max Rushden, Barry Glendenning, Jonathan Wilson and Nick Miller discuss everything looking like handball in slow-motion, goalless draws, Cristiano Ronaldo reacting like Ronaldo reacts to a defeat, the penalty which made it to Row 32 and P!nkJoin the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and email.We look back at the last couple of days of football, starting with Manchester City’s 3-2 win over Schalke, having come back from a goal and a man down to take an advantage into the second leg. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Chris Eubank Jr: ‘Nothing can match the feeling of having your hand raised after a fight’

Brighton super-middleweight has one last chance to show that he can live with a top operator on Saturday when he takes on James DeGale in a bout which will leave the loser with nowhere to go“This is the biggest and most important fight of my career,” Chris Eubank Jr says quietly, rocking gently on a plastic chair in a tiny office tucked away in his gym on Hove seafront. He nods intently as he considers his battle against James DeGale at the O2 in London on Saturday night. “It’s definitely the one where I have the most to lose. A loss would leave me in no man’s land. DeGale is in exactly the same position. We both cannot afford defeat. We’re both on the edge and someone’s going to fall.”I have asked just one opening question and Eubank has cut to the heart. He and DeGale are preparing for a bout which will surely leave the loser facing the end of his career. Of course this is boxing and so a controversial decision or a narrow defeat might persuade the defeated fighter that one last shot at redemption is possible. But both men recognise their future, and long-term reputations, could be decided this weekend. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 West Ham United 3-1 Fulham: Controversial Hernandez goal helps hosts to victory

Javier Hernandez's controversial goal with his arm contributes to Fulham's 18th Premier League defeat of the season as West Ham fight back from behind to win at London Stadium.

23-02-2019 Chelsea’s transfer ban forces club to make major decisions on recruitment | Dominic Fifield

Chelsea could reconsider contract policy or, at long last, lean more heavily on academy graduates and give youth its chanceChelsea had been braced for Fifa sanction for some time and swiftly announced they would appeal against the two-window transfer embargo imposed by world football’s governing body. The case will go to the Fifa appeals committee and, if necessary, the court of arbitration for sport and could drag on for a considerable time, with the enforcement of Fifa’s ban almost certainly stayed pending the appeals process. That buys the club time.They can then target how best to proceed in the market and, indeed, with a long-term squad-building policy. Chelsea have a number of players out of contract this summer – including David Luiz, Gary Cahill and Olivier Giroud, albeit they have the option to extend the Frenchman’s deal by 12 months – and, just as significantly, plenty more in 2020. Deals with Willian and Pedro, both in their 30s, are up next year, along with those for Callum Hudson-Odoi and, of course, Eden Hazard. The Belgian may be beyond persuasion to stay, with his heart apparently set on Real Madrid. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Dundee 2-4 Hibernian: Visitors hold on in six-goal thriller

Paul Heckingbottom makes it two wins from two as Hibernian boss as his side moves into the Premiership top six with victory over Dundee.

23-02-2019 Man Utd v Liverpool: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer scores FA Cup winner at Old Trafford in 1999

Watch Ole Gunnar Solskjaer score the winning goal for Manchester United against Liverpool in their FA Cup fourth round match in 1999.

23-02-2019 The Fiver | Sentencing Chelsea to a short period of mild inconvenience

Sign up now! Sign up now! Sign up now? Sign up now!“The protection of minors,” Fifa wrote in a statement issued today regarding Chelsea’s apparently repeated and flagrant flaunting of regulations concerning the international transfer and registration of players under the age of 18, “is a key element in Fifa’s regulatory framework relating to the transfer of players and effective enforcement of these rules is paramount.” Continue reading...

23-02-2019 EFL warns Coventry City they risk expulsion over home venue uncertainty

• Coventry given deadline of 5 March to provide an update• Club say they ‘want to do a deal’ to stay at Ricoh ArenaOne hundred years after joining the Football League, Coventry City have been warned they may face expulsion from it if they do not confirm where they plan to host matches next season.The club’s tenancy at the Ricoh Arena runs out this summer and no end is in sight to their long-running dispute over rent and other issues with the stadium’s owners, the Premiership rugby club Wasps, and Coventry city council, the freeholder. The EFL says the uncertainty cannot be tolerated much longer. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Klopp: Solskjær has made Manchester United a threat again – video

Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp says Ole Gunnar Solskjær has brought 'all the things Sir Alex Ferguson stood for' back to Manchester United, ahead of their Premier League clash at Old Trafford on Sunday.Klopp has ‘no doubt’ Solskjær will be given permanent Manchester United job Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Solskjær says beating Liverpool would be ‘worthy of United’s history’

• United have lost only one of caretaker’s 13 games in charge• Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard could return on SundayOle Gunnar Solskjær believes if Manchester United beat Liverpool at Old Trafford on Sunday it will be another step towards making his side one “worthy of club history”.The interim-manager has won 11 of his 13 games in charge, losing just once, to Paris Saint-Germain in last week’s Champions League last-16 first leg. Three of those victories were at Tottenham, Arsenal and Chelsea, moreover. Continue reading...

23-02-2019 Cardiff 1-5 Watford: Javi Gracia proud of 'outstanding' Hornets display

Watford boss Javi Gracia says he is proud of all his players after an "outstanding" performance which saw his side dominate Cardiff to win 5-1 at the Cardiff City Stadium.

23-02-2019 Super League Triathlon: World Champion Vicky Holland - 'It is brutal'

World Triathlon Series Champion Vicky Holland discusses the Super League Triathlon format with BBC's Louise Minchin ahead of Saturday's eliminator races in Singapore.