Friday's sport as it happened

All the build-up ahead of the weekend's Premier League action, Robbie Fowler Q&A and more

21 September 2012 Last updated at 19:09

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As it happened

    BBC Radio 5 live, BBC Radio 5 live

    That's all from Sportsday Live for today. Just to let you know that 5 live Sport is under way with Colin Murray, who is with you through until 2200 BST.

    And if you live in the UK, you can watch live coverage of the RaboDirect Pro12 rugby union match between Scarlets and Ospreys on the BBC Sport website, courtesy of our colleagues at Scrum V. We'll see you here for Sportsday Live at 0800 BST.

  2. 1857: 

    Lewis Hamilton expects a close three-way fight for pole position between McLaren, Red Bull and Ferrari at tomorrow's Singapore Grand Prix qualifying session.

    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel was fastest in practice, ahead of McLaren's Jenson Button and Ferrari's Fernando Alonso, with Hamilton fifth.

    "Jenson's very fast, Fernando also and Sebastian's incredibly quick. We just need to keep working," says McLaren driver Hamilton.


    Former England captain Michael Vaughan's reaction on Twitter to the World Twenty20 victory over Afghanistan in Colombo:

    "Great start for England today.. Well done skipper Stuart Broad... I presume you are doing karaoke in the Hilton Colombo..."

  4. 1846: 

    Luke Wright fell just one run short of becoming the first England batsman to score a century in a Twenty20 international - but was happy with his 99 against Afghanistan in Colombo.

    "It was a bit of a special evening. It's something that I've wanted to do," he says. "I was desperate to get back in and try to win games for England."


    England bowler Jade Dernbach has tweeted his response to the 116-run win over Afghanistan at the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka:

    "Potential tricky fixture overcome. Awesome innings from Luke Wright. Boys are pumped and ready to push on."

  6. 1833: 

    Ipswich have signed defender Danny Higginbotham on a one-month loan from Stoke.

    Higginbotham, 33, has agreed the deal in time to play in tomorrow's Championship match against Charlton at Portman Road.

  7. 1830: 

    If you refresh your browser, you can watch Sportsday, our round-up of all the day's top sports stories.

  8. 1823: 

    News just in from Buenos Aires. Argentinian football great Diego Maradona is to become a father for the fifth time at the age of 51.

    His partner Veronica Ojeda has confirmed the news to an Argentinian entertainment website.

  9. 1817: 

    Now Stuart Broad, England's Twenty20 captain: "It was awesome. We batted with maturity. Luke Wright's inning was outstanding and the guys struck the ball powerfully and excitingly towards the end.

    "We're delighted with that performance and it was a great way to start the tournament. Hopefully we can kick on from here."

  10. 1815: 

    Afghanistan's cricket team captain Norooz Mangal after losing by 116 runs to England: "We have enjoyed the tournament. England played as champions. We couldn't cope with the pressure and lapses in the field cost us the game. But we have learned a lot and I would like to give credit to the England bowlers and batters."

  11. 1813: 

    Midlands amateur side Coventry Bears are earmarked for a place in rugby league's semi-professional ranks.

    The Rugby Football League is in talks with the club, who only came into being 14 years ago, about being admitted to a restructured Championship One in 2014.

    Coventry had been considered for entry in 2013 alongside Hemel Stags, University of Gloucestershire All Golds and latest new boys Oxford.

    But they have now been given another 12 months to prepare for the move.

  12. 1809: 

    New Coventry City manager Mark Robins makes his first three signings for the struggling League One club.

    Midfielders Conor Henderson and Franck Moussa and left-back Jamie Reckord have all been signed in time for Robins' first home game in charge, against Carlisle United on Saturday.

    Arsenal's Henderson, 21, and Wolves' Reckord, 20, have both joined on three-month loan deals.

    Free agent Moussa, 23, signs a short-term deal after two years at Leicester.


    Everton's John Heitinga tweets: "Just landed with Everton in Wales! Now feet up and preparing for tomorrow's game against Swansea. Come on you Blues..."

  14. 1801: 

    Afghanistan are all out for 80, falling 116 runs short of England's total. The World Twenty20 champions start their defence with a win. Luke Wright stars with an impressive 99 not out.

    Catch all the reaction via BBC Sport's live text commentary.

  15. 1800: 

    Europe's Ryder Cup star Ian Poulter says he is driven during the competiton by passion and pride.

    "It's the most amazing energy, electricity and adrenalin rush you've ever had," he insisted.

    "You're so proud to be there. You are representing Europe, you're excited, nervous - there's every emotion running through your veins."

    The 2012 Ryder Cup tees off in Medinah, Chicago, on Friday 28 September.

  16. 1754: 

    Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson is worried his side might not be able to perform in Sunday's match with Liverpool as a result of the focus on fans' behaviour.

    "Human nature can mean that the players... could be so flat, even in the dressing room before the game," he said.

  17. 1750: 

    Sebastian Vettel goes fastest for Red Bull in second practice at Singapore's Marina Bay street circuit.

    You can watch highlights from the latest practise on the BBC Sport website.

  18. 1744: 

    The 50 is up for Afghanistan. They find themselves 51-8 after 14 overs, chasing England's score of 196.

    Keep across the very latest via the BBC Sport live text commentary.

  20. 1737: 

    Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo refuses to be drawn on how much time off John Terry will be given during his Football Association hearing into allegations he directed a racist slur at QPR defender Anton Ferdinand.

    It is understood Terry's personal hearing is set to begin on Monday. He denies the charge.

  21. 1731: 

    Judd Trump says he is relieved to come through the Shanghai Masters quarter-final against Graeme Dott: "I was very nervous and I would have been disappointed to throw the match away."

    "I haven't played Mark Williams [Trump's last four opponent] for a few years and we've never met on the big stage before.

    "We will both play our natural games and go for our shots. It will be tough but I fancy my chances."

    Phil McNulty, BBC Sport's chief football writerFOOTBALL

    "Sir Alex Ferguson has been very public in standing alongside Liverpool and the Hillsborough families. Here is his letter:"

  23. 1724: 

    Judd Trump sees off a spirited fightback from Graeme Dott to seal a place in the semi-finals of the Shanghai Masters.

    The 23-year-old sped into a 4-1 lead, but Dott won three in a row, levelling with a 108 clearance, before Trump took the decider with a century of his own.

    Facing Trump in the last four is former world champion Mark Williams, who overcame Joe Perry 5-4.

    Two more former world champions, John Higgins and Shaun Murphy, complete the semi-final line-up.

  24. 1720: 

    Southampton defender Maya Yoshida says he is enjoying life in the Premier League despite making his debut during the club's 6-1 defeat to Arsenal last weekend.

    "Life is very nice here," said the 24-year-old. "You live by the sea and the food is not so bad. I've not tried fish and chips yet but I think I will do it."

  25. 1710: 

    Uefa open disciplinary proceedings against Lazio for the improper conduct (racist behaviour) of the club's supporters during the Europa League group stage match on Thursday between Tottenham and the Italian side.

    The Uefa Control and Disciplinary Body will deal with the case on 18 October.

  26. 1708: 

    Great Britain avoid top seeds Russia but will face last year's bronze medallists France in the 2013 EuroBasket Women.

    Britain, who finished without a win at this summer's Olympic Games, will also face Serbia and Latvia in Group C.

    Reigning European champions Russia have been drawn against Spain, Italy and Sweden in Group B.

    The competition will be held from June 15-30 in France.

  27. 1704: 

    England's Twenty20 captain Stuart Broad takes a caught-and-bowled as the World T20 champions reduce opponents Afghanistan to 17-3 after four overs.

    Follow all the latest twists and turns via the BBC Sport live text commentary.

  28. 1659: 

    McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh insists it is normal that the team are at odds with driver Lewis Hamilton over his wage demands as they try to secure him to a new contract.

    He says: "I am sure he will want more money and I am sure we will want to pay less - that is how the business normally works."


    You have been reacting on Twitter to Swansea boss Michael Laudrup's suggestion that there is nothing wrong with teams offering other sides financial incentives to win matches.

    Mike Stead on Twitter: "Surely footballers are already paid to win... I believe it's called "their wage"?"

    Join in the debate at #bbcsportsday

  30. 1650: 

    London Broncos complete the signing of Huddersfield Giants hooker Tommy Lee on a two-year contract.

    Broncos coach Tony Rea says: "Tommy comes to us at an ideal time for both the player and the club. His development as a hooker will be reaching its optimum.

    "His style of play will complement the way the team plays. Tommy represents an ambitious player who looks forward to taking on and conquering the challenges and opportunities in front of him."

  31. 1644: 

    Roberto Di Matteo confirms that Roman Abramovich visited the club's Cobham training ground following the Champions League draw with Juventus .

    But the Chelsea manager insists it is nothing new following reports that the club's owner had spoken to players and coaching staff on Thursday.

    "He comes quite often to be honest. He likes to be involved and comes down whenever he can," said Di Matteo.

  32. 1635: 

    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel heads McLaren's Jenson Button in practice at the Singapore Grand Prix.

    Vettel was 0.311 seconds faster than Button, with Ferrari's Fernando Alonso third from Red Bull's Mark Webber.

    McLaren's Lewis Hamilton, who closely matched Vettel throughout the day, was fifth fastest after running wide at the final corner on his fastest lap.

  33. 1630: 

    England hit 196-5 against Afghanistan in the first game of their World Twenty20 title defence, and will now bowl. Follow live text updates on the BBC Sport website.

  34. 1626: 

    Continued: "It cannot and should never be based on personal hatred. Just ten days ago, we heard the terrible, damning truth about the deaths of 96 fans who went to watch their team try and reach the FA Cup final and never came back.

    "What happened to them should wake the conscience of everyone connected with the game.

    "Our great club stands with our great neighbours Liverpool today to remember that loss and pay tribute to their campaign for justice. I know I can count on you to stand with us in the best traditions of the best fans in the game.

    "Yours sincerely, Sir Alex Ferguson."

  35. 1626: 

    Manchester United supporters going to Sunday's match against Liverpool at Anfield will be presented with a letter written by manager Sir Alex Ferguson as they pass through the turnstiles warning them about their behaviour.

    It reads: "The great support you gave the team here last season has seen our allocation back up to near-full levels. I want you to continue that progress today.

    "But today is about much more than not blocking gangways. Today is about thinking hard about what makes United the best club in the world.

    "Our rivalry with Liverpool is based on a determination to come out on top - a wish to see us crowned the best against a team that held that honour for so long.

  36. 1616: 

    UEFA confirm that all match official reports from Tottenham v Lazio have now been received and are being reviewed.

    Still possible that they may say something on the alleged racial abuse by Lazio fans on Friday afternoon, but likelihood is now it will be early next week.

  37. 1611: 

    Norwich manager Chris Hughton insists he harbours no bitterness towards Newcastle owner Mike Ashley and the club's board as he prepares to face his former side.

    He says: "From the day I left there it was a conscious decision that I was only going to look forward and I think through any experience, good or bad, you have to grow from that.

  38. 1556: 

    Robbie Savage is answering the best of your tweets in 'Savage Says'.

    This week's topics include Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart's fiery comments after his team's dramatic loss at Real Madrid, the controversy surrounding pre-match handshakes, and Arsenal's chances of winning the Premier League title.

    You can send your questions to Robbie each week via Twitter by using #savagesays

    Available to UK users only.

  39. 1551: 

    British heavyweight Tyson Fury challenges David Haye on Twitter to a fight. He tweets: "Mr Haye, while waiting for Vitali, why not fight me and try boost your WBC ranking? December 1 is ready?????"

  40. 1543: 

    England are currently 74-2 from 10 overs against Afghanistan in the first game of their World Twenty20 title defence. Follow live text updates on the BBC Sport website.

  41. 1537: 

    Tributes will be paid throughout the Premiership this weekend to Ulster after he died in an accident on his family farm.

    A minute's silence will be observed before all six Premiership games, with Sale also paying respect to Greater Manchester Police officers Nicola Hughes and Fiona Bone in their match against London Welsh on Friday night.


    You have been reacting on Twitter to Swansea boss Michael Laudrup's suggestion that there is nothing wrong with teams offering other sides financial incentives to win matches.

    Scott Perry on Twitter: "I don't see how being paid to win is a bad thing. You could never guarantee a win, regardless of cash! You can only fix a loss."

    Join in the debate at #bbcsportsday

  43. 1524: 

    BBC Radio 5 live's Simon Brotherton sees Lucy Garner win the junior women's road race at the World Championships in the Netherlands.

    He says on Twitter: "Lucy Garner won the sprint by a Cav sized margin after being brilliantly led out by Elinor Barker. No one else will have been in the photo."

  44. 1519: 

    Celtic manager Neil Lennon says the Champions League has filled the void at the club felt in the absence of Old Firm rivals Rangers from the Scottish Premier League this season.

    "At the minute, in terms of finances we will miss the four Old Firm games but it is not a huge loss from a footballing sense because obviously the European games will make up for that," he said.

  45. 1509: 

    The top six are currently covered by a second in second practice for the Singapore Grand Prix, with Lewis Hamilton leading Sebastian Vettel, Jenson Button, Pastor Maldonado, Mark Webber and Fernando Alonso. You can follow all the action on the live text service on the BBC Sport website.

  46. 1505: 

    West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce is confident his side's home record will see them past Sunderland on Saturday.

    "We have delivered two very important home wins and, coupled with the back end of last season, we have won six home games in a row and only conceded one goal," he said.

    "We want to continue that against a very strong Sunderland side who have gone away to Arsenal and Swansea and come away with points. It will be very difficult for us."

  47. 1458: 

    England will begin the defence of their World Twenty20 title at against Afghanistan in a few moments. Follow live text updates on the BBC Sport website.

  48. 1450: 

    Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says there were probably times when midfielder Jack Wilshere doubted whether he would ever play again during his long-term spell out injured.

    "When you are so young and out for 14 months that is a good test for your mental strength," said Wenger.

    "Jack had ups and downs, and many downs because he had a few setbacks, but he dealt with it very well, especially in the last three months he was highly focused every day."

  49. 1448: 

    BBC Radio 5 live's Simon Brotherton is watching the junior women's road race at the World Championships in the Netherlands.

    He says on Twitter: "Business end of the race now. At the bell, it's starting to split up and both Lucy Garner and Elinor Barker are in front group of 27."


    You have been reacting on Twitter to Swansea boss Michael Laudrup's suggestion that there is nothing wrong with teams offering other sides financial incentives to win matches.

    Daniel John on Twitter: "People moaning about losing respect for Laudrup, he's just calling it as he see's it. He doesn't condone it, just knows it's happening."

    Join in the debate at #bbcsportsday

  51. 1441: 

    British cyclist Nicole Cooke says the GB women's team will miss having Lizzie Armitstead in their side for the world championships road race in the Netherlands on Saturday.

    Watch live on Saturday 22 September on the Red Button and BBC Sport website, 13:20-17:00 and BBC One, 15:30-16:30 with coverage throughout the day on BBC Radio 5 Live.

  52. 1433: 

    England begin the defence of their World Twenty20 title at 15:00 BST against Afghanistan. Captain Stuart Broad loses the toss, and Afghanistan decide to bowl. You can follow live text updates on the BBC Sport website.

  53. 1428: 

    The second practice for the Singapore Grand Prix starts at 14:30 BST. You can follow all the action on the live text service on the BBC Sport website.

  54. 1418: 

    Brendon McCullum hit the highest score in Twenty20 international history as New Zealand beat Bangladesh by 59 runs at the World Twenty20 in Pallekele.

  55. 1415: 

    Britain's former 100m backstroke world champion Gemma Spofforth on her retirement.

    "I would love to thank everyone who has made this journey possible, specifically the unconditional support and love my dad [Mark] has given me over these years," said Spofforth.

    "The patience my brother [Peter] has shown with his world-travelling sister. And the fantastic coaching I have received from each and every one of my coaches."

  56. 1411: 

    Laura Robson making her the first British woman to reach a WTA final since Jo Durie at Newport, USA, 22 years ago.

    "1990 is a long time ago, it's about time it got broken," Durie told BBC Sport. "I don't think I need to give her any advice for the final, she's on a roll at the moment.

    "She's just got to enjoy the moment and battle hard, that's all you can do out there. A lot more hard work will come on the practice courts. I wish her very good luck."

  57. 1404: 

    British swimmer Gemma Spofforth has announced her retirement at the age of 24.

    The Shoreham-by-Sea 2009 world champion is the world record holder in the 100m backstroke.

  58. 1356: 

    That's it for the Robbie Fowler Q&A folks, thanks for all of your contributions.

  59. 1354: 

    Are you on Twitter, do you see the point?

    "Of course. My Twitter name is @robbie9fowler and I enjoy using it.

    "There are a few people who give a little bit of stick, and I give a bit back. But it's good for people in the public eye to get opinions across and to speak to the fans. You certainly need to have thick skin for it!"

  60. 1350: 

    West Brom boss Steve Clarke says last week's defeat by Fulham has not set them back after a strong opening to the campaign.

    Albion will look to get back on track when they host Reading tomorrow.

    "We had a really good start to the season," said Clarke. "Then we lost at Fulham - which a lot of teams do - and didn't quite reach the standard that we expected to reach. But it's just a defeat, it's part and parcel of football and we'll move on to the next game."

  61. 1347: 

    BBC Radio 5 live's Simon Brotherton is watching the junior women's road race at the World Championships in the Netherlands.

    He says on Twitter: "All 5 GB riders in lead group of 61 at end of 1st lap of 5 in Jnr Women's RR with def champ Lucy Garner prominent."

  62. 1343: 

    Laura Robson beats Romanian third seed Sorana Cirstea 6-4 6-2 to reach her first WTA singles final in Guangzhou, China.

    Robson is the first Briton to make a WTA singles final since Jo Durie in 1990, and will try to match Sara Gomer's 1988 victory in Aptos, California, when she plays Chinese Taipei's Su-Wei Hsieh on Saturday.

  63. 1337: 

    Do you still have your white suit from the 1996 FA Cup final against Manchester United?

    "Yes. I've still got it and I'm going to loan it to the National Football Museum in Manchester for an exhibition they're doing on fashion in football."


    You have been reacting on Twitter to Swansea boss Michael Laudrup's suggestion that there is nothing wrong with teams offering other sides financial incentives to win matches.

    Gary Gash on Twitter: "A ridiculous suggestion. Teams could hold others to ransom by threatening not to field their strongest team unless they're paid."

    Hits Patel on Twitter: "Happens in Spain all the time, they don't offer money to teams to lose... It's not match fixing!"

    Crip Cooke on Twitter: "Laudrup is entitled to his opinion regarding a financial incentive to win games. Serie A would welcome him with open arms."

    Join in the debate at #bbcsportsday

  65. 1326: 

    Bolton Wanderers sign full-back Stephen Warnock on a three-month loan deal from Aston Villa.

  66. 1323: 
    WORLD T20

    Bangladesh's thin hopes of staging an upset against New Zealand are getting slimmer. Chasing 192 they are 47-4 with nine overs gone.

    BBC Sport's live text commentary will keep you up to date.

  67. 1319: 

    Which sporting icons would you invite to dinner?

    "I'm quite into golf and horse racing so Tony McCoy would be great, he's a good guy. I love Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy as well. That wouldn't be a bad little table."

  68. 1316: 

    Hugo Rodallega could face a frosty reception from Wigan fans tomorrow when he returns to the DW Stadium for the first time since leaving for Fulham in the summer.

    Whatever welcome he receives, Wigan boss Roberto Martinez believes the striker will have fond memories of the club.

    "We know Hugo really well," said the Spaniard. "It's one of those situations where I'm sure when Hugo retires everyone will have incredible memories of his past at Wigan Athletic and I'm sure he'll have a really soft spot for his time at Wigan."

  69. 1308: 

    Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert brands reports that Southampton manager Nigel Adkins is close to losing his job as "ridiculous".

    The two sides face each other tomorrow with the Saints searching for their first points of the season.

    "It's getting a bit silly now," Lambert said. "With what he's done for them, and when it's only four games into the season, I think it's a bit ridiculous."


    What's your biggest regret in football?

    "It would have to be failing to win the Barclays Premier League. Every player wants to do that.

    "The Premier League is the pinnacle of club football and to actually win that would be a tremendous honour. Sadly I've not done it before and I'm never going to do it now as a player, but I've still got a chance as a manager.

    "Not winning it as a player was a killer for me. You're always judged on what you do in the league, what you win, and unfortunately I haven't done that."

  71. 1300: 

    BBC Manchester's Bill Rice at Manchester United's training ground:

    "Alex Ferguson says Wayne Rooney won't be ready for Manchester United's game at Liverpool on Sunday, but the striker could be back next week after a return to training."

  72. 1256: 

    Laura Robson takes the first set 6-4 in her semi-final against Romania's Sorana Cirstea, as she aims to become Britain's first WTA singles finalist for 22 years.

    Follow the live score on the tournament's website.

  73. 1247: 

    What was the highlight of your career?

    "As a footballer you're always happy when you're winning trophies. So the 2000-01 season, when Liverpool ended up winning five trophies and qualifying for the Champions League, was my highlight. I also enjoyed scoring the quickest hat-trick in Premier League history against Arsenal in 1994.

    And the low point?

    "That has to be the 1996 FA Cup final. It's never nice being beaten by Manchester United, but to lose to them in the Cup final is the worst feeling."

  74. 1244: 

    Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson confirms that winger Ashley Young has been ruled out for two to three weeks with a "bruised cartilage".

  75. 1240: 

    First practice finishes at the Singapore Grand Prix, where Sebastian Vettel is quickest ahead of Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button.

    Get the full run down in our live text commentary and check back later for the second session, which starts in just under two hours' time.

  76. 1236: 

    Not content with his earlier achievement (see 1226), Brendon McCullum has hit the highest ever total in an international Twenty20.

    He smashed his way to 123 from 58 balls and New Zealand have set the Kiwis a mammoth 192 from their 20 overs.


    Portsmouth manager Michael Appleton says interested suitors of the club should act on their interest after news of a fifth bidder emerged this week.

    "It's one thing putting a bid in for a football club, but there is another thing actually putting your money in," Appleton tells BBC Radio Solent.


    You have been reacting on Twitter to Swansea boss Michael Laudrup's suggestion that there is nothing wrong with teams offering other sides financial incentives to win matches.

    Jamie Hardesty on Twitter: "I hugely respect Laudrup but he's talking nonsense about match fixing. I understand his view but it's not good for football."

    Leslie Odai-Lennon on Twitter: "Laudrup's words disgust me. Almost losing respect for someone I see honourable."

    Matt Webster on Twitter: "I don't like Laudrups suggestion. but if both teams were payed by other clubs to win surely it cancels itself out anyway?"

    Join in the debate at #bbcsportsday

  79. 1227: 

    Who was your toughest opponent?

    "I've been fortunate enough to do well against most teams and most defenders. But the toughest would probably be the Manchester United pairing of Steve Bruce and Gary Pallister.

    "I managed to score against them, but they were fantastic players and whenever you faced them you knew you were in a game."

  80. 1226: 

    Brendon McCullum has become the first man to score two international Twenty20 hundreds. And he's still at it. New Zealand are on the rampage.

  81. 1221: 

    New Zealand are ticking along very nicely against Bangladesh in the World Twenty20. Brendon McCullum's having a bit of fun in particular, hitting 92 off 48 balls.

    The Kiwis are 158-2 and still have two overs remaining. Our live text commentary is here.

  82. 1216: 

    Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo? And why?

    "That's impossible, like having a choice between food and water. They're both special players in their own ways.

    "They're very differentt and I love them equally for those differences. Messi is incredible but I feel a little bit sorry for Ronaldo because he would have walked away with every individual accolade if Messi wasn't so good."

  83. 1214: 

    Laura Robson is under way in her WTA semi-final in Guangzhou, China.

    The 18-year-old is up against Romania's Sorana Cirstea, the word number 30, as she aims to become the first British woman to reach a WTA final since Jo Durie in 1990.

    Follow the latest score here (external website)

  84. 1210: 

    Double Olympic gold medallist Mo Farah goes up against BBC Sport's football expert Mark Lawrenson in this week's Premier League predictions.

    Does Mo back his beloved Arsenal to win at Manchester City? And which one of the pair reckons Southampton will get their first victory of the season when they host Villa?

  85. 1159: 

    Who was the best player you played with?

    "I've played with many, many great players. Paul Gascoigne was fantastic and I could sit here all day and talk about Liverpool players - John Barnes, Ian Rush, Jan Molby, Ronnie Whelan and Steven Gerrard, who is an unbelievable player.

    "He would probably be my number two. The best player I've ever played with is Steve McManaman. He was unreal."

  86. 1156: 

    Speaking of F1, there's the small matter of the Singapore Grand Prix this weekend.

    First practice is in full flow, with Mercedes' Nico Rosberg setting the pace ahead of McLaren's Jenson Button.

    BBC Sport's Lawrence Barretto will tell you more over on our live text commentary.

  87. 1153: 

    Caterham have appointed Cyril Abiteboul as their new CEO.

    Abiteboul is currently the deputy managing director of Renault Sport Formula One, who provide engines for Caterham, Lotus and Red Bull.

    He will juggle both jobs until January and will then join Malaysian-owned Caterham full-time.

  88. 1148: 

    Hearts are fined £4,000 by Uefa after supporters spilled out of the stand when they took the lead against Liverpool at Anfield in last month's Europa League qualifier.

    The sides drew the second-leg tie 1-1, David Templeton scoring the Hearts goal, but the Reds went through 2-1 on aggregate.

  89. 1136: 

    Apart from you in your prime, what do Liverpool need to get back to their former glories?

    "There are some very, very good players there but a lot of confidence is needed. The manager certainly says the right things - and he's doing the right things.

    "The squad is very threadbare so we do need some investment in terms of players, making the squad a little bit better and providing more competition because if you've got competition it can make the existing players up their performances.

    "Liverpool's game is not bad. Goalscoring has been a bit of a problem, but I'm sure with the job Brendan is doing and will continue to do, they've got the right manager to improve their fortunes."

  90. 1133: 

    Bath chief executive Nick Blofeld admits he was surprised by Olly Barkley's decision to join Top 14 side Racing Metro.

    "It was quite a bolt out of the blue," Blofeld told BBC Radio Bristol. "We only became aware of it a few days ago.

  91. 1129: 
    Twenty20 CRICKET

    New Zealand are 33-1 in the sixth over of their Twenty20 World Cup group match against Bangladesh, who won the toss and put the Kiwis in.

    Keep across it with BBC Sport's Stephan Shemilt on our live text.

  92. 1124: 

    Would you become a manager?

    "Yes I would. I've already started the journey - I was player/manager at Muangthong United in Thailand last season. You can't play football for ever and the next step for me is coaching and managing.

    "I do love the game, so to stay involved in coaching and managing is something I want to do. You know you're not going to come straight in and manage at Premier League level, but that certainly is the aim. I've finished my B Licence and I'm definitely going to do the rest of them."

  93. 1117: 

    What do you do now that you aren't playing?

    "The property thing is going well and I'm also doing some television work but, to be honest, I have not officially retired. I'm not going to come out and say I'm desperate for a club and I do know I'm not going to play in the Barclays Premier League again, but I can still play. I'm still fit enough."

  94. 1115: 

    Thanks for your questions for Robbie Fowler. The former Liverpool, Manchester City and Leeds striker has answered some of them and we'll start to put them up here shortly.


    You have been reacting on Twitter to Swansea boss Michael Laudrup's suggestion that there is nothing wrong with teams offering other sides financial incentives to win matches.

    Peter Hardman on Twitter: "Downside of Laudrup's suggestion is teams trying to negotiate bigger "suitcases" by threatening not to try. It would happen."

    Peanut on Twitter: "Laudrup's words disgust me, calls everything from sporting ethics to respect into question. Disrepute charge appropriate?"

    Adam Hayes on Twitter: "Laudrup comments just reflect how close game is to imploding! If he accepts teams offer £ to win-not long until £ to lose!"

    You can join the debate on #bbcsportsday

  96. 1052: 

    Bangladesh win the toss and opt to field in the day's opening World Twenty20 game. Mushfiqur Rahim's men face New Zealand in the first match in a Group D that is completed by Pakistan.

    Live text commentary of the action from Pallekele is available on the BBC Sport website, with England's opening match of the tournament against Afghanistan to follow at 1500 BST.

  97. 1045: 

    International Cycling Union (UCI) president Pat McQuaid denies allegations that his organisation ever hid a positive test from American Lance Armstrong or warned him prior to doping test.

    He said that the UCI "has never hidden a positive sample, not just of Lance Armstrong, but of any other athlete".


    Jay on Twitter: "Nothing wrong with awarding cash to another team to motivate them to win. It's naive to think that cash won't motivate players."

    Nick Young on Twitter: "Clubs are already financially incentivised to finish as high as they can so what difference does Laudrup's suggestion make?"

    Andrew Harvey on Twitter: "It would be very naive to suggest that footballers aren't motivated by their bank balance, the sad state of the modern game."

    You can have your say on Michael Laudrup's comments on clubs offering cash to reward other teams for victories on #bbcsportsday.

  99. 1032: 

    BBC Manchester's Bill Rice at Manchester City's training ground: "Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini says he has no problem with Joe Hart or Mario Balotelli ahead of Sunday's game with Arsenal.

    "The manager reacted angrily to the goalkeeper's comments about the manner of their defeat at Real Madrid on Tuesday, but now says he has no issue with England's number one.

    "Mancini also denied Balotelli was left out because of a row between the two, calling reports of a bust up "totally false".

    "The Italian also confirmed Sergio Aguero is fit for Sunday's game, but Samir Nasri is set to miss out because of a hamstring injury."

  100. 1028: 

    Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert says that his players' relationship with the fans is more important than with him.

    "Managers get too much attention," said Lambert.

    "The key to a successful club is the relationship between fans and players. You have to get your stadium rocking, if you do that you've got a chance'."


    Is Michael Laudrup right to say teams should be able to offer other sides cash rewards for winning matches?

    Would the offer of financial reward keep teams 'honest' in end-of-season matches that may be less competitve otherwise? Or does introducing money into the game raise the spectre of match-fixing regardless?

    Does it make a difference if the money goes to the players involved or their club? And are footballers really motivated by the size of their bank balance when they are out on the pitch?

    Send us your thoughts on #bbcsportsday.

  102. 1013: 

    Swansea manager Michael Laudrup says he sees nothing wrong with teams offering other sides cash rewards for winning matches where a victory would be to their mutual benefit.

    The practice occurs in Spanish football where such payments are known as "suitcases".

    "If Swansea play the last game against a team and a third team pays Swansea to win the game, I really don't see anything bad about that," said Laudrup.

    "It's just a bonus. For me, match-fixing is somebody pays someone to lose a game."

  103. 1004: 

    Former Liverpool, Leeds and Manchester City striker Robbie Fowler's answers to your questions will appear on this page from 1100 BST. Thanks to all those who submitted questions via #bbcsportsday.

  104. 1000: 

    Great Britain's Lucy Garner faces a tough task to retain her junior road race word title in south Limberg later today.

    "It's a lot different to the course last year, it's hillier, which probably isn't my best but I'll give it my best shot," said Garner.

    "I'm just trying to not put too much pressure on myself, I want to do well."

    The 65km race begins at 1500 BST.

  105. 0954: 

    Former world champions John Higgins and Mark Williams are both within one frame of victory in their respective quarter-finals at the Shanghai Masters. Higgins leads Ali Carter 4-2 while Mark Williams is 4-3 ahead against Joe Perry.

    Stuart Bingham takes on Shaun Murphy and Graeme Dott plays Judd Trump in the tournament's other last-eight matches.

  106. 0946: 

    Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger insists that striker Olivier Giroud, signed from Montpellier for £12m in the summer, will be a success at the club.

    The 25-year-old is yet to score for the Gunners and was on the bench for their last league game against Southampton.

    "I'm very happy with his attitude and his commitment. I'm absolutely convinced he will be successful," said Wenger.

  107. 0935: 

    Robbie Fowler tells BBC Radio 5 live that Brendan Rodgers is the right man for the Liverpool manager's job. Rodgers took the reigns at Anfield in the summer after Kenny Dalglish was sacked by the club.

    "With the players he has at his disposal he's doing all right. As long as everyone gives him time and has patience, that's what everyone at the club needs," said Fowler.

    "It needs a little bit of stability and I reckon he is the man Liverpool need."

  108. 0929: 

    Former Liverpool striker Robbie Fowler believes that Liverpool's Luis Suarez and Manchester United's Patrice Evra should be at the heart of ensuring that the teams' meeting on Sunday passes off without tasteless chanting from either set of fans.

    Suarez was banned for eight matches last season after racially abusing Evra and then refused to shake hands with the Frenchman before the teams' match in February.

    "The Suarez-Evra incident overshadowed a lot of stuff last year," Fowler told BBC Radio 5 live

    "It would be nice for Luis Suarez to put some flowers towards the Manchester United end regarding Munich, and maybe for Patrice Evra to lay some flowers at the Kop end.

    "The two clubs do have a rivalry, but some things are far more important than football and this is one of them."

  109. 0916: 

    West Ham's on-loan striker Andy Carroll will not recover from a hamstring injury in time to play in Saturday's meeting with Sunderland.

    The 23-year-old has returned to light training despite fears that he would be ruled out for six weeks when he first sustained the injury.

  110. 0909: 

    Norwegian Gabriel Rasch signs for Team Sky for the 2013 season. The 36-year-old, who has appeared in five Grand Tours, rode for FDJ-BigMat last season.

  111. 0900: 

    Uefa is waiting for the match report from last night's Europa League game between Tottenham and Lazio at White Hart Lane following the reports of racial abuse of Spurs forward Jermain Defoe from the away support.

    Disciplinary proceedings against the Italian club could begin as early as this afternoon if European football's governing body decides there is a case to answer.

  112. 0853: 

    Four-time world champion John Higgins takes a 3-1 lead over Ali Carter in the quarter-finals of the Shanghai Masters in China. In the session's other last-eight meeting, Mark Williams is level at 4-4 with Joe Perry.

  113. 0845: 

    Former Liverpool striker Robbie Fowler will be sitting down for a question and answer session with Sportsday Live later this morning.

    If you want to get his opinion on the current situation at Anfield, the atmosphere surrounding this weekend's match between Liverpool and Manchester United or the truth behind some of the episodes from his long playing career.

    You can send in your questions on #bbcsportsday.

  114. 0836: 

    Kevin Pietersen hopes that, following his apology to former captain Andrew Strauss, he will be included in the England squad to tour New Zealand in February.

    In a Twitter conversation with New Zealand rugby union star Dan Carter, Pietersen said that he hoped that the issue was "sorted & I'm on the NZ tour in Feb."

    Carter told Pietersen that he was "a much better cricketer than commentator" in reference to the batsman's recent punditry at the World Twenty20.

  115. 0826: 

    Formula 1 championship leader Fernando Alonso is aiming to match Ayrton Senna's career haul of three world titles after equalling the Brazilian legend's number of podium finishes.

    Alonso finished third two weeks ago in Italy to claim his 80th podium spot, putting him level with Senna.

    "When you equal some numbers of Ayrton Senna it's always quite a big thing, especially for me," he said.

  116. 0818: 

    Australia's run of injuries continues with fly-half Quade Cooper's presence on the Wallabies' autumn tour of the northern hemisphere in doubt after his knee surgery was delayed for at least a week.

    Cooper was due to undergo arthroscopic surgery on Friday to remove a small chip of cartilage from the knee he injured during last year's Rugby World Cup.

    Australia have lost David Pocock, James Horwill and Will Genia to injuries.

  117. 0808: 

    Former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba says he is really happy at new club Shanghai Shenhua.

    The 34-year-old has scored five goals in seven games so far for the Chinese side and is adamant that he will see out his two-and-half-year contract.

    "I just arrived like two months ago so I'm really happy. I am, I'm really happy here so I have no reasons to leave. I don't want to leave here," he told BBC Sport.

    You can watch the full interview with Didier Drogba on Football Focus on Saturday at 1215 BST on BBC One.

  118. 0800: 

    Good morning. We begin Friday's Sportsday Live with three of the top stories from today's gossip column.

    Italy centre-back Angelo Ogbonna, 24, interests Sir Alex Ferguson, but Torino have told Manchester United any offer of less than £16m will be rejected. (The Sun)

    Manchester United are targeting Valencia's Algerian midfielder Sofiane Feghouli, 22, as they seek a long-term replacement for veteran Paul Scholes. (Metro)

    Wigan boss Roberto Martinez still wants Crystal Palace's England Under-21 winger Wilfried Zaha, 19, but is put off by the £6m asking price. (Daily Mirror)

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