FEATURED - I'd like to think I'm more than Rio's brother, says Anton Ferdinand

HE'S not Rio, they’d say. Sure, he’d graduated from the same academy at West Ham, played in the same commanding centre-half style and made it at professional level. Just by surviving the graveyard of English football’s youth system, he had achieved more than most could ever dream of. If things went his way, the talent was there for him to play for England. Just like his brother. But at every turn, every landmark, came the comparison and the reminder. He wasn’t Rio...
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Baseball in West Ham's London Stadium called off due to coronavirus

BASEBALL'S London Series has become the latest victim of the coronavirus pandemic after Major League Baseball cancelled this summer’s event at West Ham’s London Stadium. The two-game series was scheduled for June 13 and 14 between the Chicago Cubs and St Louis Cardinals but has now been called off to protect players and spectators. The 2020 Major League Baseball season was postponed indefinitely on March 16, 10 days before Opening Day, based on guidance from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)...

Exclusive - Chicago Cubs' Rizzo on winning the World Series and playing in London

THE LONGEST championship drought in the history of North American professional sport met its end deep in the webbing of Anthony Rizzo's right glove. It was gone midnight in Cleveland. The Chicago Cubs and hometown Indians had been back and forth for seven games, culminating in a five-hour, 10-inning, rain-delayed epic that lurched to and fro, with the stomachs of invested spectators following suit. After 108 years of hurt, the Chicago Cubs' Kris Bryant fielded a weakly-hit effort and hurled the final out of the 2016 World Series to first base, where Rizzo clung on to seal the victory. He thrust the ball into the Ohio night, and stuffed it in his back pocket...

Chris Wilder won't let his Sheffield United heroes relax following win

SHEFFIELD UNITED'S hardest task until the end of the season will be to not look down. Not even three years since they left League One behind, the Blades now sit sixth in the Premier League table after this smash-and-grab win at Selhurst Park — sealed by a Vicente Guaita howler on the hour — which vaulted them above Manchester United and Wolves. No Sheffield United side has climbed this high, this late in the season, for 45 years...

Mikel Arteta reveals he wanted to bring Granit Xhaka to Man City

MIKEL ARTETA has revealed he tried to bring Granit Xhaka to Manchester City when he first arrived at the Etihad, only to see Arsenal steal in instead. The Spaniard retired as a player in 2016 to become Pep Guardiola's assistant at City, and high up on his list of transfer targets for the new regime was Xhaka, who swapped Borussia Monchengladbach for north London that summer in a £35million deal. City turned to Ilkay Gundogan to fill their central midfield needs instead, parting with £15m less to sign the German. While Gundogan has been a significant part of two title-winning sides in Manchester, Xhaka has struggled to win admirers in England...

Sheffield United look like they belong in the Euro elite

FOR ALL that the Big Six flirt with break-away leagues and taking themselves off to a closed-shop top table with no room for upstarts, as each week goes by it is a written-off bunch from south Yorkshire who look as though they belong among the cream of the continent. They may publicly recoil at the suggestion — Chris Wilder, much like Nuno at Wolves, called it 'ludicrous' after this latest win — but Sheffield United are favourites for Europe...

Brighton 0-1 Sheffield United: McBurnie fires Blades back into top six

AS THE Premier League season ticks towards halfway, the whispers of a European challenge out of south Yorkshire are becoming roars. This win, as comfortable a 1-0 as a team can wish for on the road in the Premier League, sent Sheffield United fifth in the top flight, one point behind the Champions League places. Many an upstart have found themselves here before, heading into Christmas with dreams of continental football in the new year before wilting when safe of relegation, but performances like these reinforce the view that Chris Wilder is building a serious contender...

Bamford is denied a double, but Leeds man gets back on track at Luton

IT WILL have taken a stern conviction to be the one to tell Patrick Bamford the winning goal was not his. The striker toiled through a goalless September and October - his barren run stretching to 10 games before relief against Blackburn last time out - but with the taste for blood heightened after opening the scoring here at Kenilworth Road, was determined not to let another slip from his grasp. But the scoresheet will read Matty Pearson own goal as the Luton centre-back slid in to deny Bamford turning in Mateusz Klich's 90th-minute cross, despite the Leeds man's protests...

Luton Town 1-2 Leeds United: Patrick Bamford scores late winner

IT WAS near-impossible in the tangle of legs to see who had the decisive touch, but the definitive outcome of a winning goal was all that mattered to Leeds United. Patrick Bamford claimed it, a second for him in the game and third in his last two that put paid to any memory of the 10-match goalless run that went before. Matty Pearson was also a candidate as he slid to try to deny Bamford from a yard out, but after the Luton centre-back had been cruelly denied a goal in the right end 30 minutes earlier, it would only have compounded his misery to assign it to him...

Saracens 38 Glasgow 19: Here we go again

GLASGOW WARRIORS must be sick of the sight of Saracens. Saturday’s defeat was their third to the English champions in a little under two years, each one a crippling blow to European progress. A 38-13 loss away in 2017 ended their Champions Cup hopes at the quarter-final stage, while defeats at Scotstoun and in north London in this season’s campaign leave Glasgow the lowest-ranked side left in the competition. And by virtue of their 38-19 reverse at Allianz Park on Saturday, they must return to this minefield once again to face the two-time kings of Europe in a quarter-final in March. They will travel to London facing fearsome odds.

Saracens 38 Glasgow 19: Chilled to the Maro yet again

IT WAS Maro Itoje’s turn to celebrate in Glasgow faces again. Although more legitimate on this occasion than his antics at Scotstoun in October, this outburst will have stung all the more. The England lock’s try, with 10 minutes remaining in the contest, dragged the game away from Dave Rennie’s side at long last, and with it denied them what could prove to be a crucial losing bonus point. This was a world away from the dour, niggly contest that these two sides played out in October. Five tries inside the opening quarter, a sixth before half-time and two sides going hell for leather on the scoreboard, rather than at each other...

Defoe will give Rangers the edge, says Darren Bent

FOR a player with a CV as decorated as Jermain Defoe's, it is hard to understand the assertion he could still have something to prove. The scoresheet has carried his name 273 times in his 20-year club career, with a further 20 strikes at international level to boot. He sits seventh on the all-time English Premier League goals list, has turned out more than 50 times for his country and is universally revered for his off-the-field connection with Bradley Lowery...
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