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Formula One chiefs announce testing dates and big changes ahead of the highly-anticipated 2022 season… with Thursday media sessions SCRAPPED in favour of three-day weekends ahead of a bumper 23-race calendar 

  • The Formula One season will get underway in Bahrain from March 10-12
  • There are 23 races scheduled on the calendar for the upcoming 2022 season
  • The four-day race weekends will now be cut down to three days in 2022 


Formula One will condense its race weekends from four days into three for the 2022 season as part of a new look setup which will condense 23 races into its calendar.

Drivers will now carry out their media duties on the Friday morning instead of Thursday, with practice taking place later on Friday.

Saturday will remain qualifying day and Sunday will stay as the race day.

Max Verstappen of Red Bull heads into the upcoming 2022 season as defending champion

Max Verstappen of Red Bull heads into the upcoming 2022 season as defending champion

The news regulations state media activities will be for a ‘maximum duration of two hours, finishing no later than one hour and 30 minutes prior to the start of P1’.

All three practice sessions remain an hour long. 

The changes come alongside announcement that pre-season testing in Barcelona will run from February 23-25 and a second test will be held in Bahrain from March 10-12.

Bahrain will also host the first race of the season the following weekend. It ends on 20 November at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. 

Max Verstappen of Red Bull heads into the season as defending champion, wrestling the title off Lewis Hamilton in a dramatic final race of the season in Abu Dhabi in December. 

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The arrival of self-driving cars on our roads has come a step closer following new recommendations for legal reforms, making manufacturers and software developers – rather than human drivers – liable if a vehicle crashes.

The Law Commission today published a report calling for a new ‘Automated Vehicles Act’, which will regulate vehicles that can drive themselves and make clear who could face prosecution if a self-driving car drives dangerously or causes an accident. 

The Automated Vehicle Act would aim to resolve the biggest grey area concerning the introduction of self-driving technology on our roads, which is who is deemed liable when something goes wrong. 

Safety experts described the report as a ‘crucial first step’ that could see self-driving cars used on our roads in the next 12 months if recommendations are approved by parliament.

Is this a sign that self-driving cars are taking a step closer? The Law Commission today published recommendations stating that a motorist should NOT be held liable if a vehicle crashes when a self-driving system is active

Is this a sign that self-driving cars are taking a step closer? The Law Commission today published recommendations stating that a motorist should NOT be held liable if a vehicle crashes when a self-driving system is active

The Law Commissions’ proposal published today, outlines that when a self-driving system is active, a human in the driver’s seat would legally become a ‘user-in-charge’ – and would avoid prosecution if the vehicle drives itself dangerously or causes a crash.

This would mean immunity from a wide range of offences, such as exceeding speed limits and running red lights when the self-driving feature is in operation. 

Instead, the company or body that obtained the authorisation for the technology’s use would become an ‘Authorised Self-Driving Entity’ (ADSE) and be held responsible for the car’s actions in the eyes of the law.

The ASDE would be required to work with a regulatory body, in order to avoid repeat occurrences by providing data to understand who was at fault and where liability lies following a collision. 

The ADSE could also face sanctions if regulators deem necessary. 

A user-in-charge would still be required to retain some duties, such as holding a driving licence, having insurance and ensuring occupants are wearing seatbelts. And they will have to remain within the drink-drive limit. 

The report recommends that when a self-driving system is active a human in the driver's seat would legally become a 'user-in-charge' - and would avoid prosecution if the vehicle drives itself dangerously or causes a crash

The report recommends that when a self-driving system is active a human in the driver’s seat would legally become a ‘user-in-charge’ – and would avoid prosecution if the vehicle drives itself dangerously or causes a crash

The Law Commissions said there should be additional requirements for vehicles authorised to drive themselves without there being a human in the driver's seat at all where in this case all human occupants become 'passengers' and are void of liability

The Law Commissions said there should be additional requirements for vehicles authorised to drive themselves without there being a human in the driver’s seat at all where in this case all human occupants become ‘passengers’ and are void of liability

Crucially, the Law Commission adds that manufacturers will need to market technology appropriately, ensuring there is a clear distinction between ‘assisted-driving’ features, requiring a human to be engaged at all times – such as adaptive cruise control – and those systems that allow for self driving.

It says this clear distinction ‘would help to minimise the risk of collisions caused by members of the public thinking that they do not need to pay attention to the road while a driver assistance feature is in operation’.

‘A vehicle should only be authorised as self-driving if it is safe even if an individual is not monitoring the driving environment, the vehicle or the way that it drives,’ the report adds. 

It comes after a ruling in a German court found that Tesla’s use of the term ‘Autopilot’ to describe its cars’ autonomous driving capabilities was ‘misleading for consumers’.

The Law Commission also called for additional requirements for vehicles authorised to drive themselves without there being a human in the driver’s seat at all. 

Occupants in this scenario would be considered ‘passengers’ without a user-in-charge and the licensed operator would become responsible for overseeing the safety of the entire journey. 

There would also be requirements for passenger services to be accessible, especially to older and disabled people.

Commenting on the report, Public Law Commissioner Nicholas Paines QC, said: ‘We have an unprecedented opportunity to promote public acceptance of automated vehicles with our recommendations on safety assurance and clarify legal liability.’ 

Transport Minister Trudy Harrison added: ‘The development of self-driving vehicles in the UK has the potential to revolutionise travel, making every day journeys safer, easier and greener.

‘This Government has been encouraging development and deployment of these technologies to understand their benefits. However, we must ensure we have the right regulations in place, based upon safety and accountability, in order to build public confidence.

‘That’s why the Department funded this independent report and I look forward to fully considering the recommendations and responding in due course.’

Commenting on the report, Edmund King, AA president, said it is vitally important that drivers are not encouraged to take their hands off the wheel until self-driving systems are regulated and fail-safe. 

‘The Law Commission is right to distinguish between driver-assistance features and self-driving and to ensure driver assistance features aren’t marketed as self-driving,’ he said.

‘What is less clear is when such technologies can be used on the road. 

‘The Department of Transport has already missed its 2021 ambitions to get trails of fully driverless cars on the roads although there is now a trail underway in Milton Keynes which we will watch with interest.

‘Meanwhile, there still remains a large level of scepticism amongst the driving public who are unconvinced that fully autonomous cars can co-exist alongside human drivers.’

Matthew Avery, chief research strategy officer at Thatcham Research, an organisation which was part of the consultation for the Law Commissions’ report, said the safe introduction of self-driving systems is ‘fraught with risk’ but legal reforms put forward by the commission would be ‘a significant step’ to bring clarity for industry and consumers regarding who is liable if collisions occur.

‘In the next 12 months, we’re likely to see the first iterations of self-driving features on cars in the UK,’ he said.

This includes the use of Automated Lane Keeping Systems – or ALKS – on Britain’s motorways at speeds up to 37mph, which was first announced by MPs back in August 2020.

ALKS can steer a car by itself and allow drivers to take their hands off the wheel entirely. Such systems are already available in some of the latest cars on the market, including the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

Mr Avery added: ‘It’s significant that the Law Commission report highlights the driver’s legal obligations and how they must understand that their vehicle is not yet fully self-driving: it has self-driving features that, in the near future, will be limited to motorway use at low speeds.’

The Government first revealed plans to allow for Automated Lane Keeping Systems to be used on motorways back in August 2020

The Government first revealed plans to allow for Automated Lane Keeping Systems to be used on motorways back in August 2020 

Drivers of cars fitted with 'Automated Lane Keeping Systems' (ALKS) are expected to be legally allowed to use them on motorways and take their hands off the wheel, though there still remains questions over who would be liable if these vehicles were involved in accidents

Drivers of cars fitted with ‘Automated Lane Keeping Systems’ (ALKS) are expected to be legally allowed to use them on motorways and take their hands off the wheel, though there still remains questions over who would be liable if these vehicles were involved in accidents 

He went on to explain that the Law Commission’s recommendation is that a user-in-charge will need to be ready to take back control from a self-driving system at any time – and won’t be permitted to sleep or use their mobile phone – when the features are enabled. 

And if any sort of monitoring is required – in extreme weather conditions, for example – it should not be considered autonomous and current driving rules should apply.

The transition to the safe introduction of automation with self-driving capabilities is fraught with risk as we enter the early stages of adoption

Matthew Avery, Thatcham Research 

‘It is critical that early adopters understand these limitations and their legal obligations,’ Mr Avery warned.  

Jim Holder, editorial director at consumer motoring magazine What Car?, said the arrival of an Automated Vehicles Act would be a ‘crucial first step’ in a line of many legal questions autonomous vehicles must navigate and answer in the future. 

‘By placing responsibility of the vehicle with manufacturers and software developers when in ‘self-driving’ mode, the legislation will act as a significant incentive for manufacturers to ensure any product they introduce is safe and trustworthy,’ he said. 

‘Already, current driver-assistance features on new cars have come under legal scrutiny based on potentially misleading buyers with their capabilities. 

‘As manufacturers continue to develop autonomous technology, it’s imperative the legislation keeps up.’ 

Today’s report will been laid before Parliament and the Scottish Parliament. 

It will be for the UK, Scottish and Welsh Governments to decide whether to accept the Commissions’ recommendations and introduce legislation to bring them into effect. 

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Gary Neville knew Wayne Rooney and Ruud van Nistelrooy were ‘certainties’ to be successful at Man United as soon as they signed… as the Sky pundit reveals he was left in awe of the Dutchman’s shooting ability in his first training session

  • Gary Neville knew Rooney and Van Nistelrooy would shine at Manchester United
  • He says they were the only players he was ‘certain’ would be stars for the club
  • Van Nistelrooy scored 150 goals in 219 games for United during his five-year stay
  • Rooney left United as the club’s all-time record goalscorer after years of goals


Gary Neville has revealed he knew Wayne Rooney and Ruud van Nistelrooy were ‘certainties’ to be successful at Manchester United as soon as they completed their moves to Old Trafford.

Neville chalked up nearly 600 appearances for the Red Devils in a glittering career that saw him win eight Premier League titles and the Champions League twice.

He saw plenty of players come in and out of Old Trafford during his 20-year association with the club but has recalled knowing that both Rooney and Van Nistelrooy would be instant hits.

Gary Neville knew Wayne Rooney and Ruud van Nistelrooy were 'certainties' to be successful at Manchester United

Gary Neville knew Wayne Rooney and Ruud van Nistelrooy were ‘certainties’ to be successful at Manchester United

The Sky pundit chalked up nearly 600 appearances for the Red Devils in a glittering career

The Sky pundit chalked up nearly 600 appearances for the Red Devils in a glittering career

Dutch striker Van Nistelrooy joined United in 2001 for a British record transfer fee at the time of £19million from PSV Eindhoven while Rooney signed from Everton for £27m in 2004. 

Neville revealed it took just one training session for Van Nistelrooy to convince him of his ability, while he already knew Rooney would be a success before he joined.

The Sky Sports pundit said: ‘There were two certainties. 

‘The one who I already knew was Wayne Rooney. It wasn’t even a risk, you just knew he would be absolutely unbelievable.

‘Even though we had to wait for him to make his debut because he was injured, I never thought it would be a risk.

Van Nistelrooy joined United in 2001 for a British record transfer fee at the time of £19million

Van Nistelrooy joined United in 2001 for a British record transfer fee at the time of £19million

‘The other one I didn’t know but we spent a lot of money on him and it was Ruud van Nistelrooy.

‘The first time I watched him in training, he did a shooting session and hit one and I went, “woah, you can’t kick a ball like that”. Sometimes you see things in training and just think to yourself, “that’s a proper player”.

‘That was Ruud. He was the one who I didn’t know beforehand that I looked at straightaway in training and thought he was unbelievable.

‘The other one was Wayne Rooney and it was mesmerising to think what he would do for us.’ 

Van Nistelrooy scored a sublime 150 goals in 219 appearances for United over his five-year stay at Old Trafford. 

Rooney ended his United career in 2017 as the club's record goal scorer with 253 in 559 games

Rooney ended his United career in 2017 as the club’s record goal scorer with 253 in 559 games

During that time he won all four domestic cup competitions before leaving for Real Madrid in 2006.

Rooney, meanwhile, finished his United career in 2017 as the club’s record goal scorer thanks to his record of 253 goals in 559 appearances.

Neville has previously called the Derby manager the ‘best centre forward I ever saw at United’.

He said: ‘For me he was the best centre-forward I ever saw at Manchester United and ever played with.

‘I have him number one, up front, Cristiano Ronaldo alongside him in every single of the best United teams that I played alongside.

‘That’s the highest compliment I can pay him, because I played with Cantona, Hughes, Yorke, Cole, Sheringham, Solskjaer, Berbatov, Tevez, great strikers from all over the world, not just in England. But Rooney would be my number one.’

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Senegal ‘put result ahead of player safety’, claims brain injury group after Sadio Mane was allowed to play on despite being KNOCKED OUT following a ‘sickening’ clash of heads in AFCON last-16 win over Cape Verde

  • Sadio Mane suffered a serious head injury in Senegal’s win over Cape Verde
  • The Liverpool and Senegal star clashed heads with Vozinha in the AFCON clash
  • Mane carried on playing despite his collision and scored ten minutes later
  • But the Liverpool star was eventually forced off after complaining about his blow
  • Headway CEO Luke Grigg hit out at Senegal and AFCON for risking Mane’s safety


Senegal have been accused of ‘putting results ahead of safety’ after Sadio Mane was forced off with a head injury in their Africa Cup of Nations last-16 win over Cape Verde.

The Liverpool forward received treatment after a collision with goalkeeper Vozinha, who was taken off on a stretcher after being shown a red card, and played on despite appearing to be initially knocked out.

But after scoring the opening goal 10 minutes later, the 29-year-old lay down on the pitch holding his head and had to be helped off and eventually substituted.

Senegal have been accused of putting their results ahead of Sadio Mane's safety after the Liverpool winger's head injury against Cape Verde

Senegal have been accused of putting their results ahead of Sadio Mane’s safety after the Liverpool winger’s head injury against Cape Verde

Mane clashed heads with Cape Verde goalkeeper Vozinha and appeared to be knocked out

Mane clashed heads with Cape Verde goalkeeper Vozinha and appeared to be knocked out

Headway deputy chief executive Luke Griggs said Mane’s team and the tournament organisers’ protocols – concussion substitutes are not permitted at AFCON – had put the player at risk.

‘On the face of it, this seems to be yet another example of football putting results ahead of player safety,’ he said.

‘This was a sickening collision that clearly left both players in enough distress for a concussion to have surely been considered a possibility at the very least.

‘At that point, the principle of ‘if in doubt, sit it out’ should have resulted in Mane being substituted without another ball being kicked.

Mane (left) played on and scored ten minutes later, a move deemed 'dangerous' by Headway

Mane (left) played on and scored ten minutes later, a move deemed ‘dangerous’ by Headway

But Mane (third right) went down again after the collision and had to be taken to hospital

But Mane (third right) went down again after the collision and had to be taken to hospital

‘The image of the player collapsing on the ground and having to be helped from the pitch after scoring his goal should tell you everything you need to know about the impact and the effect it had had on his brain.

‘Yet again, the desire to win is seen as being worth serious risks to players’ health. It is simply shocking that this continues to happen.

‘This is now a real test of leadership for the Confederation of African Football and world governing body FIFA – particularly if Senegal declare Mane fit for Sunday’s quarter-final.

Mane was in good spirits with Vozinha in hospital and was discharged later on Tuesday night

Mane was in good spirits with Vozinha in hospital and was discharged later on Tuesday night

‘If football wants to be taken seriously when it comes to concussion, it simply must take action to enforce and strengthen its protocols.’

A couple of hours after the match, Mane and Vozinha were pictured together smiling and giving the thumbs up from hospital, with the Liverpool forward writing: ‘Everything is fine, thank you all for the messages.’

Mane was later discharged and rejoined his team-mates at their hotel. 

On the injury and subsequent trip to hospital, Senegal manager Aliou Cisse told a press conference: ‘He felt faint, his head was spinning and he had to go there.’

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Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang ‘is LEFT OUT of Arsenal’s mid-season trip to Dubai’ (even though no-contract Jack Wilshere is going!), as they try to offload ex-captain and tell him to train alone in London

  • Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang has been exiled by Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta
  • The Gunners are looking to get rid of the striker in the January transfer window
  • Aubameyang is reportedly uninterested in moving to Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia  


Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has reportedly been left in London while the club head to Dubai for a mid-season training camp. 

According to The Telegraph, Aubameyang has been told to train his own even though Jack Wilshere, who is not even contracted to Arsenal but has been training with them, is included on the trip.

Arsenal are looking to offload the striker, who is on £350,000-a-week, before the end of the transfer window but The Telegraph adds Aubameyang has no interest in heading to Saudi Arabai, where there is interest from Al-Nassr.

Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is not involved in the club's Dubai training camp

Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is not involved in the club’s Dubai training camp

Aubameyang has been exiled by Mikel Arteta after returning late from a trip to France

Aubameyang has been exiled by Mikel Arteta after returning late from a trip to France

For Arsenal, that move would make the most sense financially as Al-Nassr are prepared to pay all of his wages.

But with Aubameyang not prepared to move there, Arsenal may have to entertain offers from Europe where less of his wage will be covered.

Manager Mikel Arteta dropped Aubameyang and stripped him of the Arsenal captaincy after he returned late from a trip to France to visit his mother in December.

The Gunners appear to be missing Aubameyang, having scored just one goal in their last five games and have been linked with moves for other forwards in the January window.

Arsenal are looking to offload Aubameyang and his £350,000-a-week wages in January

Arsenal are looking to offload Aubameyang and his £350,000-a-week wages in January

They held a serious interest in Fiorentina’s Dusan Vlahovic but he looks set to join Juventus in a £62m move.

Arteta and Arsenal also hold interest in Everton striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin. 

The Gunners are sixth in the Premier League table, two points off fourth-place Manchester United with a game in hand on Ralf Rangnick’s outfit.

They are next in action on February 10, away to Wolves. 

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Jesse Lingard’s move to Newcastle is in danger of collapse, despite Ralf Rangnick giving the deal his blessing… as Manchester United hold firm in their demand for loan fee and substantial survival bonus

  • Jesse Lingard’s proposed loan move to Newcastle United is on brink of collapse 
  • The England international had been given Ralf Rangnick’s blessing to move 
  • However, Manchester United are asking for a package worth £15m for the deal 


Jesse Lingard’s move from Manchester United to Newcastle is in danger of collapsing after the two clubs failed to agree terms.

Lingard was given the green light to spend the remaining five months of his United contract on loan at St James’ Park following talks with interim boss Ralf Rangnick on Tuesday.

However, Newcastle are reluctant to pay a loan fee and substantial bonus if they win their battle to stay in the Premier League, as well as footing Lingard’s £100,000-a-week wages. It’s understood the entire package could cost the club’s Saudi owners in excess of £15million.

Jesse Lingard's move to Newcastle United is in danger of collapse during the January window

Jesse Lingard’s move to Newcastle United is in danger of collapse during the January window

United have already rejected offers from Tottenham and West Ham because they are rivals for a top-four place, and now have six days to revive talks with Newcastle or find an alternative option.

Everton have also expressed an interest but there has been friction between the Glazer family and Farhad Moshiri in the past after United pulled the plug on moves for Sergio Romero and Van de Beek.

Now Lingard could be left in limbo until the end of the season when he will end a 21-year association with United and leave Old Trafford as a free agent.

The 29-year-old England international has played a bit-part role again this season, starting just two games under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Rangnick, and is desperate to reclaim a place in Gareth Southgate’s squad ahead of this year’s World Cup.

Newcastle boss Eddie Howe is desperate to add some fresh faces to his squad in the window

Newcastle boss Eddie Howe is desperate to add some fresh faces to his squad in the window

Lingard still wants to join Newcastle, having revived his fortunes with a successful loan spell at West Ham last year, but is becoming increasingly frustrated with United’s stance.

Meanwhile, Crystal Palace are interested in signing Van de Beek, another of United’s peripheral players, on a short-term basis.

Having blocked the Dutchman’s proposed loan move to Everton last summer, United may be more open to offers now with Valencia said to be another option.

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Southampton ‘are NOT planning a bid to sign’ impressive on-loan Chelsea striker Armando Broja permanently this month… as West Ham also eye a deal for the Albanian

  • Southampton not planning to sign Armando Broja permanently this month
  • The 20-year-old has netted seven times in 21 outings for the Saints this season 
  • West Ham are reportedly interested in signing the Albanian international striker 


Southampton are not planning a bid to make Armando Broja’s loan move permanent, despite initial reports of a £25m deal in place for the Chelsea striker. 

The Albanian international has been in fine form for the Saints, scoring seven goals in 21 outings since joining on loan last summer.

There is however no plans to make his move permanent in the final days of the January transfer window, despite ongoing interest from Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl, according to talkSPORT.  

Southampton are not planning a bid to make Armando Broja's loan move permanent

Southampton are not planning a bid to make Armando Broja’s loan move permanent 

The Saints were initially planning a £25million bid for the Chelsea striker this month

The Saints were initially planning a £25million bid for the Chelsea striker this month

Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl said of the player’s future earlier this month: ‘We will find the right conversation with the player, the agents, the club. What they want, what Chelsea want.

‘I think we should let the young lad develop his game because this is the most important thing for him to play games. 

‘He likes it here, he enjoys it here, we have a young team and these are all reasons why he develops his game and is getting better.

Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl provided an update on Broja's future earlier this month

Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl provided an update on Broja’s future earlier this month

‘In the end we need to make the best decision for the player, when it’s a win, win, win for everybody, then we will find the right decision for the summer. 

‘As long as he is our player, we will have as much fun with him and make him better.’

West Ham are reportedly interested in the 20-year-old, who has only played four minutes of first-team football for Chelsea, featuring against Everton in the Premier League in March 2020. 

The Hammers are desperately looking to sign a forward to help provide competition and support to Michail Antonio.

It remains to be seen whether Chelsea are even prepared to listen to offers for their academy graduate, as the European champions are said to be weighing up his long-term future at Stamford Bridge.

He only put pen to paper on a new five-year contract last July, meaning Blues officials will be able to command a sizeable transfer fee should they decide to cash in on him.

A number of teams have already enquired about their asking price for Broja, who scored 11 goals in 34 appearances on loan in Holland with Vitesse last season.

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Barcelona star Ansu Fati is ‘set to miss up to THREE months out’ after suffering a hamstring injury in Copa del Rey defeat… as injury-hit teenager opts AGAINST surgery in favour of a ‘conservative recovery plan’

  • Barcelona’s Ansu Fati is facing two to three months out with a hamstring injury
  • The 19-year-old came off injured in the Copa del Rey loss by Athletic Bilbao
  • He is reluctant to have surgery on his latest injury after previous treatment
  • The Catalan club confirmed that Fati will follow a ‘conservative recovery plan’ 
  • Fati has scored five goals in just 10 matches for the Catalan giants this season 


Barcelona star Ansu Fati is set to miss two to three months worth of action after suffering a hamstring injury in the club’s Copa del Rey defeat by Athletic Bilbao.

The 19-year-old has only featured 10 times for Barca so far this season due to struggling with multiple injuries and he has now suffered yet another setback.

Fati hobbled off the pitch in tears in the Catalan giants’ Copa del Rey defeat to Athletic Bilbao and he had to be consoled by manager Xavi and his opposite number, Marcelino.

Barcelona are set to be without star striker Ansu Fati, who has suffered another injury setback

Barcelona are set to be without star striker Ansu Fati, who has suffered another injury setback

The 19-year-old (right) hobbled off in Barca's Copa del Rey defeat to Athletic Bilbao in tears

The 19-year-old (right) hobbled off in Barca’s Copa del Rey defeat to Athletic Bilbao in tears

And now reports in Spain are claiming he won’t be back on the pitch until the end of March at the earliest as he begins his rehabilitation on his hamstring injury. 

According to Sport, the teenager is facing a three-month spell on the sidelines, leaving him with yet another disappointing injury to overcome this season.

It’s already clear that another surgery might be a good idea, something Barca have advised him of.

But Fati has opted against surgery for a fourth time this season and has instead chosen to conduct a ‘conservative recovery plan’, according to the club’s official website.

Fati took to social media earlier this week where he vowed to ‘never give up’ after learning the news of his injury.

He wrote on Twitter: ‘Unfortunately, I am having to live the worst part of football, but I will never give up! Thank you very much for your messages of support and love! NEVER GIVE UP.’ 

Fati (centre) is reportedly not keen on undergoing another surgery after multiple last year

Fati (centre) is reportedly not keen on undergoing another surgery after multiple last year

The La Masia graduate has a ‘terrible memory’ of the meniscus arthroscopy he underwent ‘where many mistakes were made’ as he had to go through the operating room three times last year, reports Barca Universal.

Fati’s first injury came on November, 7, 2020 when he tore the meniscus in his left knee which required multiple bouts of surgery. 

Then on September, 26, 2021, Fati returned only to suffer recurring ailments which stunted his progress.

Despite constant injury setbacks, the youngster has been in excellent form for the Catalans when he has played. 

Fati has three goals in five LaLiga games and five in 10 in all competitions.

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Ronald Araujo ‘REJECTS Barcelona’s opening contract offer’ as his Nou Camp future remains uncertain… with ‘Chelsea and Man United both interested in bringing the Uruguayan defender to the Premier League’

  • Ronald Araujo has reportedly rejected Barcelona’s opening contract offer
  • It’s claimed Chelsea and Manchester United are preparing to take advantage
  • Araujo, 22, has become Xavi’s top choice to partner Gerard Pique at centre back
  • But he wants a new deal that reflects his performances and role in the team 


Ronald Araujo has reportedly rejected Barcelona’s opening contract offer as Chelsea and Manchester United prepare to take advantage.

Araujo, 22, has developed into one of Barcelona’s top defenders since earning a promotion from the club’s B team in 2019, overtaking Clement Lenglet and Samuel Umtiti to become Xavi’s top choice to partner Gerard Pique.

However, the Uruguayan’s future is unclear with his contract expiring in the summer of 2023 and both parties no closer to agreeing terms on a new deal. 

Defender Ronald Araujo has reportedly rejected Barcelona's opening offer of a new contract

Defender Ronald Araujo has reportedly rejected Barcelona’s opening offer of a new contract

Xavi wants to keep the 22-year-old but Araujo wants a contract reflecting his recent displays

Xavi wants to keep the 22-year-old but Araujo wants a contract reflecting his recent displays

According to Spanish newspaper Marca, Araujo has turned down Barcelona’s opening offer after talks between the club and his agent last week.

It’s claimed that although the offer was quickly rejected, talks were ‘amicable’ and more negotiations are expected in the coming months.

But news of Araujo’s uncertainty over his future at the Nou Camp has given Premier League sides Chelsea and United hope of tempting him to England.

Chelsea could be in desperate need of defenders this summer with Antonio Rudiger, Andreas Christensen and Cesar Azpilicueta all out of contract at the end of the season.

United, meanwhile, are still looking for ways to tighten up their defence after the poor form of Harry Maguire and the underwhelming performances of Raphael Varane since he arrived from Real Madrid.

Chelsea could be in desperate need of new defenders this summer

Ralf Rangnick is said to be keen on a move for Araujo with United's defence still leaking goals

Thomas Tuchel (left) and Ralf Rangnick (right) both want to bring Araujo to the Premier League

Araujo has developed into a key player for Barcelona but his contract expires next summer

Araujo has developed into a key player for Barcelona but his contract expires next summer

There is still a strong possibility that Araujo stays put at Barcelona, however. It’s thought that sporting director Mateu Alemany has made his new contract a ‘priority’.

Given Barcelona’s financial woes and need to spend funds in other areas of Xavi’s squad, tying down Araujo seems like an obvious necessity given his age and ability.

It’s thought the player wants to commit his future to Barcelona but will only do so if he is offered a contract that reflects his recent displays. 

Real Madrid have also shown interest in Araujo but, as Sportsmail reported earlier this week, the Spanish rivals have ‘agreed an unwritten rule’ to stop speaking to each other’s players under contract. 

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England captain Owen Farrell is ruled out of the entire Six Nations, Eddie Jones confirms, with fly-half set for surgery after picking up a ‘freak’ injury while training with Saracens in major blow ahead of the tournament


England have been dealt a major Six Nations blow with Eddie Jones revealing captain Owen Farrell has been ruled out of the entire tournament.

At the tournament launch this morning, Jones confirmed that his skipper picked up an injury while training with Saracens – and the issue will require surgery.

Farrell was set to make his return for his club against London Irish at the weekend in the European Challenge Cup, but then suffered a new right ankle problem.  

The setback meant that the star’s availability for the Six Nations was plunged into uncertainty, and Jones has said that he will be absent for all five matches.

He has not stepped onto the field since sustaining another ankle injury during the victory over Australia at Twickenham back in November. 

‘Massive blow for him personally, but it’s a chance for people to step up,’ Jones said. 

George Ford was drafted into group training in Brighton on Monday.

Ford has been widely heralded as one of the most in-form No 10s in the country this season, but was not chosen by Jones for the autumn Tests. 

With Test centurion Farrell now out, Ford has been handed a chance to revive his international career, as was reported by Sportsmail at the weekend.

Marcus Smith and the uncapped Orlando Bailey were selected as the other fly-half options in Jones’ initial squad this month, meanwhile. 

 

Smith will be first choice at 10, although Jones has been forced into a drastic rethink on his options in midfield, with Farrell nailed on to start the opener against Scotland.

Farrell’s injury follows on from Jonny May’s own fitness issues, while prop Joe Marler has pulled out of the group after testing positive for Covid-19. 

May is facing a race against time to battle back from a knee problem, and will visit a specialist to determine the extent of the injury. 

He is braced to miss the first two rounds of the Six Nations, however. 

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