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  1. Mario Balotelli charged by FA over Instagram post
  2. Hull City face Uefa Financial Fair Play investigation
  3. Louis van Gaal dismisses January transfer spending reports
  4. Snooker UK Championship quarter-finals: Ronnie O'Sullivan 6-4 Anthony McGill, Stuart Bingham 6-5 Graeme Dott
  5. Ireland to bid for 2023 Rugby World Cup
  6. GET INVOLVED: Share your FA Cup fever with #getcarriedaway

Live Reporting

By Elizabeth Hudson and Adam Williams

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good evening

That's all from the Sportsday team for today. Thanks for being with us.

Whatever you're up to, hope you have a very enjoyable weekend.

Why not kick it off from 19:00 in the company of Tom Rostance and co?

They'll have full match coverage of

Hartlepool v Blyth Spartans in the FA Cup second round.

Monkey business

Dan Walker

BBC Sport

Hangus the monkey with the FA Cup

It's here & so is Hangus the

@Official_HUFC mascot #FACupCoverage of Hartlepool v Blyth Spartans beings at 19:30 on BBC Two.

Championship preview

Fulham v Watford (Friday, 19:45 GMT)

As well as the start of the FA Cup second round, there's also

one match in the Championship this evening.

Watford make the short trip around the outskirts of London to face Fulham at Craven Cottage.

It's their first meeting since a goalless draw at Craven Cottage in the Premier League on New Year's Day 2007.

A win would see Watford climb back into the top six.

Hatters hopeful of swift Benson return


Luton Town boss John Still believes striker Paul Benson could be back from his broken leg in six weeks.

The 35-year-old suffered the injury after scoring in last Saturday's 3-0 win over Mansfield.

"Any fracture or break is disappointing. But if he had to have a fracture, it's in the right place," Still told

BBC Three Counties Radio. "If all went well with him, I think we're looking at six weeks."

Premier League Preview


Alan Pardew
Adam Williams-Online

Get the low down on all of this weekend's Premier League action in

our preview video.

Hear from the managers ahead of the big games, including Newcastle boss Alan Pardew who says his players must "threaten" Chelsea in what he thinks will be a "cracking game" at St James' Park.


John Crowther's hoping some superstitious undergarments will give Blyth Spartans an edge against Hartlepool this evening.

Earlier, he

tweeted this picture:

Lucky Blyth Spartans pants

@Blyth_Spartans lucky Spartans pants at the ready! #getcarriedaway #howayblyth #FACup

The Magic Numbers

FA Cup

FA Cup third-round draw

We may not have even seen a ball kicked in anger in the second round of the FA Cup yet, but here are those

all-important numbers to look out for in Monday's third round draw.

The draw, which sees Premier League and Championship clubs enter, will be

televised on BBC Two from 19:00 GMT from The Deep Aquarium in Hull.


More evidence here that Blyth Spartans fans are getting into the cup spirit ahead of their tie at Hartlepool this evening.

Glen Maxwell

tweeted this picture:

Elton John is a Blyth fan

Elton John's a Spartan! #HowayBlyth #FACup #GetCarriedAway

Henderson targets Kempton return for Sprinter Sacre

Horse Racing

Sprinter Sacre
Getty Images

Sprinter Sacre could return to action in the Desert Orchid Chase at Kempton on 27 December.

Trainer Nicky Henderson was forced to abandon plans to run the superstar in this weekend's Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown this weekend due to the likely soft ground after he admitted such a test may come too soon in his rehabilitation.

The horse has been out of action after pulling up in last year's Kempton race with what was subsequently diagnosed to be a heart problem.


Blyth Spartans fan Tom Crane has had cup fever at work today ahead of their televised cup tie with Hartlepool, earlier he

tweeted this picture:

Tommy Blyth fan at work

@Blyth_Spartans getting psyched up for tonight's game in the office...

Latest gossip


Barcelona defender Martin Montoya
Getty Images

The Daily Mirror reports Liverpool transfer target Martin Montoya is "100% set to leave Barcelona over the winter", according to his agent.

The Spanish defender, 23, is struggling for game time at the Nou Camp and could act as a replacement for full-back Glenn Johnson.

McCarthy pleased with Mings interest


Ipswich Town defender Tyrone Mings
Getty Images

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy says

he is pleased Arsenal are keeping tabs on defender Tyrone Mings.

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger confirmed this week that the 21-year-old, who cost Town just £10,000,

"is one of the young players we follow".

"I'm glad that they are looking at him. It's great that," McCarthy told

BBC Radio Suffolk.

"I hope Chelsea are looking at Christophe Berra and Man United are looking at David McGoldrick, because if that's the case, it means we've got good players."

O'Connor wins silver


Siobhan-Marie O'Connor
Getty Images

Britain's Siobhan-Marie O'Connor has won silver in the 100m individual medley final at the World Short Course Swimming Championship in Doha.

O'Connor finished in 57.83 seconds behind Hungary's Katinka Hosszu who won in a new world record time of 56.70 for her third gold medal of the competition.


Ahead of the tie this evening, Blyth Spartans have

tweeted this picture:

Blyth Spartans team bus

The players arrive for the pre-match meal at

@Ramside_Hall #getcarriedaway

Footballers face School report test


Ahead of tonight's FA Cup tie between Hartlepool and Blyth Spartans, which will be

live on BBC2 from 19:30 GMT, BBC School Report has been speaking to some of the players.


Jonathan Franks and
Jordan Watson of Blyth Spartans both gave School Reporters their views on the game and how they hope to progress to the next round.

FA to investigate fresh Whelan comments


Wigan Athletic chairman Dave Whelan
Getty Images

The FA says it is looking into

fresh comments made by Wigan chairman Dave Whelan about Chinese people.

Whelan, 78,

told the Jewish Telegraph he used to refer to a local Chinese restaurant as "chingalings".

He is already under investigation by the FA over remarks about Jewish and Chinese people in an interview where he was trying to defend the appointment of Malky Mackay as the club's new manager.

Whelan has been given until 12 December to respond to that charge.

Donald faces different challenges in South Africa


Luke Donald
Getty Images

Former world number one Luke Donald had to dodge a charging baboon before taking the halfway lead at

the Nedbank Challenge in South Africa.

Donald, who leads by two shots from Ross Fisher, had nine birdies but missed the course record by one shot but as he prepared to hit an iron shot at the 13th, a baboon stormed the fairway and headed directly for him.

The Ryder Cup player, who is looking for his first European Tour win since the 2012 BMW PGA Championship, moved away from the ball and allowed the animal to pass safely before composing himself to hit a good shot onto the green and sinking his putt for birdie.

Bingham edges out Dott


Stuart Bingham has won the deciding frame of his

UK Championship quarter-final against Graeme Dott in York.

Earlier, Ronnie O'Sullivan beat Anthony McGill 6-4.

Later this evening, the remaining quarter-finals see Marco Fu play Stephen Maguire and Mark Davis face Judd Trump.

Pursuit teams on track for medals

Track Cycling

Great Britain's women's team pursuit team

The Great Britain women's team pursuit team have qualified fastest for tonight's semi-finals at the Track World Cup in London where they will face the USA.

Laura Trott, Joanna Rowsell, Elinor Barker and Katie Archibald finished in four minutes 23.406 seconds with the second semi-final featuring Australia and Canada.

The men's team pursuit team will also be in action against Denmark in their semi-final but the men's and women's team sprint squads are out of the running for medals.

There will be commentary on BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra and via

the BBC Sport website from 19:00.

Johnson to miss festive period after ban

Horse Racing

Richard Johnson

Leading jump jockey Richard Johnson will miss the busy Christmas period after being given a 12-day ban for taking the wrong course at Exeter on Friday.

Johnson, 37, who had seven winners at last month's Cheltenham meeting, was on board the Martin Keighley-trained Benbane Head who was pulled up after taking the wrong course after jumping the seventh fence in the four-mile contest.

Among the races he will miss is the King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day where he would have been likely to ride fourth favourite Menorah for trainer Philip Hobbs.

Tottenham team news

Tottenham v Crystal Palace (Saturday, 15:00 GMT)

Tottenham defender Danny Rose

Tottenham defender Danny Rose could make a return to Mauricio Pochettino's side.

Rose has recovered from a rib injury and could replace Ben Davies at left-back, but Vlad Chiriches and Kyle Naughton are both doubtful with knocks.

Emmanuel Adebayor is still recovering from a virus and is not considered ready while Kyle Walker is expected to play for the club's under-21 team after returning from an abdominal injury.

Provisional squad: Lloris, Vorm, Dier, Chiriches, Naughton, Vertonghen, Fazio, Kaboul, Rose, Davies, Bentaleb, Mason, Capoue, Dembele, Paulinho, Lennon, Lamela, Chadli, Eriksen, Soldado, Kane.

Manchester United team news

Southampton v Man United (Monday, 20:00 GMT)

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney
Getty Images

Wayne Rooney will be fit to face Southampton on Monday, Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has confirmed.

Captain Rooney had a scan on Thursday to examine a possible knee problem but has been given the all-clear. However record signing Angel Di Maria will not be ready to return from his hamstring injury in time for the trip to the south coast.

Luke Shaw (ankle), Jonny Evans (ankle), Rafael (groin), Daley Blind (knee) and Phil Jones (calf) are all expected to miss out.

Provisional squad: De Gea, Lindegaard, Amos, Vermijl, Rojo, Smalling, Blackett, Thorpe, McNair, Pereira, Fletcher, Valencia, Lingard, Fellaini, Anderson, Carrick, Young, Herrera, Mata, Januzaj, Falcao, Rooney, Van Persie, W Keane.

Manchester United news conference

Southampton v Man United (Monday, 20:00 GMT)

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal
Getty Images

Louis van Gaal on the success Southampton have enjoyed despite a summer of departures: "Do you know how many players we lost?

"We have lost more players, but Ronald Koeman is a very good coach and I know that he can do it.

"It's also surprising a club like Southampton is in that position now but that's down to the coach, players and staff."

O'Sullivan wins again in York


Ronnie O'Sullivan has celebrated his birthday by doing what he does best, winning snooker matches.

O'Sullivan, who turned 39 on Friday, has beaten Scotland's Anthony McGill 6-4 to reach the semi-finals of the UK Championship in York.

Manchester United news conference

Southampton v Man United (Monday, 20:00 GMT)

Louis van Gaal on facing his fellow Dutchman Ronald Koeman on the touchline on Monday: "My relationship with Ronald Koeman doesn't have to be described, that's private.

"We play against Southampton and we should talk about the team rather than the coach.

"After the game, we can reflect on the relationship I have."

Manchester United news conference

Southampton v Man United (Monday, 20:00 GMT)

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal on reports he is going to spend big in January on new players: "I think it is disgusting always writing about numbers.

"I don't think that Ed Woodward or I have said anything about it.

"It's disrespectful to my players and I don't like talking about it.

"I have to work with the selection I have."

Sampdoria coach Mihajlovic given two-match ban


Sinisa Mihajlovic

Stepping away from Old Trafford briefly and over to Italy where Sampdoria coach Sinisa Mihajlovic has been suspended for two matches following his actions at the end of an Italian Cup game on Wednesday.

Mihajlovic was sent off minutes from the end of Wednesday's 2-0 win over Brescia and has been punished for 'using a disrespectful expression toward the fourth official' and 'throwing the contents of a bottle of water at him, thus assuming an intimidating attitude.'

He will miss the next match against Inter Milan and would also be banned if Sampdoria progresses to the quarter-finals against either Napoli or Udinese.

Manchester United news conference

Southampton v Man United (Monday, 20:00 GMT)

Manchester United dfender Jonny Evans in training
Getty Images

Louis van Gaal also tells MUTV that defender Jonny Evans is ready to return to first team action while fellow defender Phil Jones is getting closer to a comeback.

O'Sullivan and Dott edge closer


A quick update from the UK Championship snooker at the York Barbican.

Ronnie O'Sullivan and Graeme Dott are

both a frame each away from reaching the semi-finals.

O'Sullivan leads Anthony McGill 5-3 in the best of 11 frames contest while Dott has the same scoreline in his match with Stuart Bingham.

Follow the action here.

Hull face Uefa investigation


More on the news that Hull, who played in the Europa League qualifying rounds, are under investigation by Uefa for possible breaches of finanacial fair play (FFP) rules.

The club is among several who have had formal investigations into their finances opened by UEFA's club financial control body (CFCB). The clubs involved will have to submit further information to the CFCB but face no immediate sanctions.

In September, Liverpool were one of seven clubs

who had investigations for possible breaches opened against them.

Uefa's rules dictate that losses must be restricted to £35.4m over a two-year window.

Manchester United news conference

Southampton v Man United (Monday, 20:00 GMT)

Louis van Gaal has told MUTV that striker and captain Wayne Rooney is fit to face Southampton but winger Angel Di Maria misses out.

More to come soon.

Manchester United news conference

Southampton v Man United (Monday, 20:00 GMT)

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal is speaking to reporters at the club's Carrington training ground.

We'll have some injury news from the club shortly.

Hull face Uefa investigation


Hull are under investigation by Uefa for possible breaches of financial fair play (FFP) rules, the governing body has announced.

Leicester team news

Aston Villa v Leicester (Sunday, 16:00 GMT)

Lee Mason shows a red card to Wes Morgan

Leicester captain Wes Morgan is suspended for Sunday's Premier League match at Aston Villa after being sent off against Liverpool.

David Nugent is a doubt with illness which has affected some of the squad but manager Nigel Pearson, who did not name others who were laid low, hopes any bug would have cleared by Sunday.

Provisional squad: Schmeichel, Hamer, Moore, De Laet, Konchesky, Wasilewski, Drinkwater, James, King, Cambiasso, Albrighton, Mahrez, Knockaert, Vardy, Ulloa, Nugent, Schlupp, Wood, Powell.

More on Balotelli charge


Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli

Balotelli, 24, is

alleged to have breached the FA's rules in that his Instagram posting on Monday was abusive and/or insulting and/or improper.

The post - which the player subsequently deleted and apologised for - appeared to contain anti-Semitic and racist references.

Balotelli has until 18:00 GMT on 15 December to respond to the charge.

BreakingBalotelli charged by FA


Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli has been charged by the Football Association following a controversial post on his Instagram page.

A club spokesman said: "We acknowledge the FA's decision and the player will work through the process to answer the charge.

"While that process is on-going the club will not be making any further comment."

Poyet believes players can recover from City loss

Liverpool v Sunderland (Saturday, 15:00 GMT)

Gus Poyet

Sunderland boss Gus Poyet has backed his players to bounce back from their

loss to Manchester City when they face Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday.

"I don't think we need to repair anything but the idea is to keep believing," said Poyet, whose side battled to a scoreless draw against Chelsea last weekend. "I think it was more of a dream that we were in a position not to lose any of these three games in a row.

"We need to be brave - that's the word we're going to use the most this weekend. We are going in there willing to play and make it difficult in both ways, offensive and defensive."

Chelsea team news

Newcastle v Chelsea (Saturday, 12:45 GMT)

Chelsea striker Diego Costa

Diego Costa will start for Chelsea after suspension.

The Spain hitman will return for the Blues at St James' Park even though both Didier Drogba and Loic Remy both found the net in Wednesday's 3-0 win over Tottenham.

Gary Cahill is fit to face the Magpies despite picking up a head knock against Spurs, with Ramires and John Obi Mikel competing to replace the suspended Nemanja Matic.

Provisional squad: Courtois, Cech, Ivanovic, Luis, Fabregas, Zouma, Ramires, Oscar, Hazard, Costa, Mikel, Shurrle, Remy, Drogba, Willian, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta, Schwarzer.

Chelsea news conference

Newcastle v Chelsea (Saturday, 12:45 GMT)

Didier Drogba

Here's Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, asked in his Friday news conference about the possibility of striker Didier Drogba staying on at Stamford Bridge as a coach once he finishes playing: "I don't know his qualities as a coach because I never saw him coach. So for me, that's a new story.

"My story, my personal story, is that he's still a very good player, and if he wants my advice in the future, I think he should stop when he wants, when he chooses. Not be waiting for me to decide, or the club to decide. We love him. We want him. He's a great player, he should stop when he wants.

"After that, I know that Mr Abramovich would be very happy to keep him at the club in any area where we feel and he feels that he can be useful and happy. But that will happen after he makes the decision to stop his career, which I don't think is tomorrow."

UK Championship latest


A quick update from the quarter-finals of the UK Championship in York.

It's three frames each between Anthony McGill and Ronnie O'Sullivan while Graeme Dott has moved into a 4-2 lead against Stuart Bingham.

Follow all

the latest here.