Tag Archives: desire

Ronnie O"Sullivan says snooker return could be car crash TV

It could be car crash television, but I'll still be worth watching! Returning O'Sullivan says appearance at Crucible will be like a reality TV show

By
Matt Mcgeehan, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

17:30 GMT, 15 April 2013

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UPDATED:

18:48 GMT, 15 April 2013

Snooker's biggest star Ronnie O'Sullivan joked that his return for the Betfair World Championship at the Crucible will be like watching Big Brother.

The 37-year-old has taken most of this season off, but is returning for the spring showpiece in Sheffield.

And he said: 'It's like my own reality TV show. It could be car crash, it could be good. You just don't know.

'I’ve never been one for doing Big Brother but this is about as close as it gets to it. It’s definitely exciting for me and everyone looking in.

Making his return: Ronnie O'Sullivan poses during the media launch for the World Championship at The Groucho Club in London on Monday

Making his return: Ronnie O'Sullivan poses during the media launch for the World Championship at The Groucho Club in London on Monday

'If I'm cueing all right and feeling all right, then I should be a match for anyone, but who knows'

The snooker world waits with bated breath to see what kind of form O'Sullivan will be in at the Crucible.

He insists that his desire for success, focus, to lose weight and reconnect with friends encouraged him to return to defend his title.

The 37-year-old Chigwell cueman
confirmed in February that he would defend the title he won 12 months
ago, despite not competing in a tournament since.

'There's a part of me that wants
instant success,' the four-time champion said. 'That would be nice, but
for me it's just about having fun. I felt it was time to have some sort
of focus in my life.

'Running was a massive part of my
life and I found I got that lazy having nothing to do, I had too much
time to even go and run in the end. I started putting weight on.

'I realised that snooker gave me an
opportunity to meet some good people, to travel and that's kind of what I
missed, missing the routine.'

Ready for the big one: World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn and Ronnie O'Sullivan attend the media launch for the World Championship

Ready for the big one: World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn and Ronnie O'Sullivan attend the media launch for the World Championship

O'Sullivan has lost a stone since
deciding to come back by returning to a routine and plans to run during
the 17-day World Championship, which begins on Saturday with his
first-round match against Marcus Campbell.

O'Sullivan believes he has plenty to
offer the game, adding: 'If you look at it statistically I've done
pretty well, but from my own perspective I feel like I've still
underachieved. I'd like to win another world title in my forties. I've
not set myself the goal to win this year's world title because that
would be a bit of a silly goal.

'I'd like to be a world champion when
I'm 40. It gives me a bit of leeway. It's the long game I'm looking at,
rather than just the short-term. This is just the start.'

Winning on his comeback would be an
overwhelming experience, O'Sullivan admitted. 'It would be a fairytale
dream, but last year was my greatest performance,' he said.

'I'd had a good season and it was
expected by pretty much everyone that I was going to win the tournament
before it started. To me that is the ultimate achievement, because
anything other than a win would've been seen as a failure in most
people's eyes.

'This year it's a different ball
game. I've come here with no matches under my belt. It'll just be nice
to be out there playing. I don't have anything to prove to the general
public.'

Champion: O'Sullivan celebrates last year's win in Sheffield

Champion: O'Sullivan celebrates last year's win in Sheffield

O'Sullivan is something of an enigma
and has worked with Dr Steve Peters, the sports psychiatrist who worked
with British Cycling and whom he now regards as a friend. O'Sullivan is
instinctive in his game and his life and his recent practice sessions
with Peter Ebdon were 'by coincidence' in Sheffield.

'Peter was the only decent player for
me to play. I had no choice,' O'Sullivan said. 'That's not being
horrible because I love Peter. And I can handle him better now since
I've been working with Steve Peters. I wish I'd been working with him 20
years ago.'

O'Sullivan was speaking at the Groucho Club in London's Soho alongside world No 1 Mark Selby, who is favourite for the title.

Selby, described as an 'invoicing
operation' by World Snooker chief Barry Hearn, has won the UK
Championship and Masters tournaments this year and is aiming to become
the fourth player – after Steve Davis, Stephen Hendry and Mark Williams –
to win the 'triple crown' in the same season.

The 29-year-old from Leicester said:
'It's a tough tournament to win. There's a lot of great players in it.
It's great to have Ronnie back playing as well, so it's going to be
tough.

'He's one of the most natural players
to ever play our game. If any one player can do it (win after a year
out), Ronnie's the person.'

Julio Cesar: I"m staying in London, even if QPR go down

Cesar: Even if QPR are relegated, I'll be staying in London

By
Declan Warrington

PUBLISHED:

15:41 GMT, 9 April 2013

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UPDATED:

17:11 GMT, 10 April 2013

Julio Cesar has revealed he is determined to remain in London, even if QPR are relegated from the Premier League.

The talented Brazil goalkeeper was a surprise summer signing at Loftus Road and has been one of their rare transfer successes and even rarer consistent performers over the course of a disastrous season.

Such is the likelihood that QPR are to be relegated back to the Championship, Cesar has been reported as being on the verge of a move to AC Milan, whose cross-city rivals Inter he left last summer.

Classy: Julio Cesar used to be considered one of the world's best goalkeepers

Classy: Julio Cesar used to be considered one of the world's best goalkeepers

Stopping short of committing himself to QPR, however, Cesar is adamant he regardless wishes to continue to play in the Premier League and insists he has no intention of undermining his time at Inter by moving to Milan.

'I'm still an Interista in my heart,' he told Corriere della Sport. 'I’m learning a new language in London, the city is beautiful and my family is happy.

'I was certainly not treated well by Inter. I love Italy, but I’ve been won over by the environment here.'

On his knees: But even he cannot save QPR's season from disaster

On his knees: But even he cannot save QPR's season from disaster

Cesar's apparent desire to remain in London significantly limits his options if he is to remain in the Premier League but it is not unthinkable that he will secure a suitable move.

Fulham were in January interested in recruiting a new goalkeeper although Mark Schwarzer's return to form means that stance may have changed, West Ham had attempted but failed to sign Paul Robinson and the Arsenal future of Wojciech Szczesny remains uncertain.

Should Watford gain promotion to the Premier League there is also a chance he could join their growing overseas contingent but the likelihood of each remains to be seen.

Michael Laudrup signs one-year contract extension at Swansea

Danish delight for Swansea as Laudrup signs one-year contract extension

By
Riath Al-samarrai

PUBLISHED:

17:12 GMT, 8 March 2013

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UPDATED:

19:20 GMT, 8 March 2013

t the club.

Michael Laudrup has moved to end speculation about his future by signing a one-year contract extension at Swansea City.

The Dane had been linked with Real Madrid and Chelsea in the wake of Swansea’s remarkable Capital One Cup final triumph against Bradford last month.

But the 48-year-old declared his desire to lead Swansea into Europe after agreeing a deal that will run until June 2015.

All smiles: Michael Laudrup agreed a one-year extension to his current deal at Swansea

All smiles: Michael Laudrup agreed a one-year extension to his current deal at Swansea

He said: ‘We’ve started something this season that I want to continue.

‘I know there has been a lot of
speculation (about my future), but I’ve always said that I am happy here
and I never had any doubts I would stay.

‘I am delighted to sign the new deal
and I’m already really looking forward to next season. I hope there will
be some very exciting things happening with the team and with the club
in Europe.’

The development will go some way to
protecting Swansea financially. Sportsmail understands that Laudrup, 48,
has committed to a hefty clause in the region of 5million, much like
the one Brendan Rodgers agreed to when he signed his extension at the
Liberty Stadium four months before joining Liverpool.

Last night Swansea chairman Huw Jenkins admitted he still fears bigger clubs will come in for his manager.

He told Sportsmail: ‘It’s a fact of
life in football that if you do well people will want your manager or
players and there is no such thing as a cast iron agreement anymore.

‘But this deal shows Michael’s desire
to stay here and it also gives us the extra financial security if
another club does come in.’

Historic: Laudrup guided Swansea to Capital One Cup success this season

Historic: Laudrup guided Swansea to Capital One Cup success this season

Historic: Laudrup guided Swansea to Capital One Cup success this season

Jenkins added: ‘The success we have
had with Michael has been brilliant. I thoroughly enjoy working with him
and long may that continue.

‘This is obviously great news for
everyone connected with the club, from the fans, to the players and the
staff. We are delighted that he has agreed this extension.’

Talks only started last week between
the two parties after Laudrup was initially reluctant to commit his
future to the club beyond stating his desire to lead the club in Europe.

Jenkins said: ‘I think the fact we got it done relatively quickly shows you what Michael thinks about the club.

‘He is enjoying himself and he finds the challenge exciting, which for him is very important.’

Arsenal financial figures show 120m in the bank after 17m six-month profit

Arsenal are sitting on whopping 120m in the bank… so why did they only spend 8.5m on a full back in January as their rivals left them behind

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The club, who are under increased pressure from fans to start competing in the transfer market, also showed that money was made on player sales once again, despite including the extra funds used to improve the contracts of Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott and others.

The news will receive mixed reviews from fans who are growing impatient at the lack of ambition shown in the market.

Show me the money: Arsenal have released their financial figures to show they turned a profit once again

Show me the money: Arsenal have released their financial figures to show they turned a profit once again

Arsenal were off the pace in the battle for fourth when the January transfer window opened, yet they waited until the final hours to strengthen their squad, only then spending a minimal 8.5m on left back Nacho Monreal.

The lack of action came after a summer in which the club sold their captain, Robin van Persie, to Manchester United for 24m.

Arsenal chairman Peter Hill-Wood
said: 'Our ability to compete at the top of the game here and in Europe
is underpinned by our financial performance which gives the club
strength and independence.

'Our desire is to make everyone
connected with Arsenal proud of the club. We know that comes through
winning trophies but also through the way we do things and that will
remain our constant guide.'

The financial report states the that
'profit on sale of player registrations amounted to 42.5m' – down
from 63m in 2011 but still a cause of concern to those fans who
believe Arsenal have not replaced players such as van Persie and before
him Cesc Fabregas by those of similar quality.

Hill-Wood insisted, however, that was not the case.

He added in a statement: 'Let me be
quite clear that our intention is to keep our best players and recruit
new talent to make us stronger.

'Although we were disappointed to see Van Persie leave the club, we have taken steps to secure our best
players going forward and have recently signed Jack Wilshere, Theo
Walcott, Kieran Gibbs, Aaron Ramsey, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Carl
Jenkinson to new long-term contracts.

'During this financial period we also
invested 40.9m in the acquisition of new players, Lukas
Podolski, Santi Cazorla and Olivier Giroud, and the extension of other
player contracts. More recently we added Nacho Monreal to our ranks from
Malaga.'

Solitary buy: Monreal (left) was Arsenal's only purchase in January

Solitary buy: Monreal (left) was Arsenal's only purchase in January

Boost: Arsenal improved the deals of six homegrown players this season, but still turned profit

Boost: Arsenal improved the deals of six homegrown players this season, but still turned profit

Feeling the heat: Arsene Wenger

Feeling the heat: Arsene Wenger

Hill-Wood said that the Premier
League club's agreement to bring in financial fair play-style spending
controls would help Arsenal.

He said: 'These new rules will be good for us, good for the Premier League and good for the game as a whole.

'It is important that we maintain the
quality and level of competition if the game is to continue being a
compelling spectacle and we believe the introduction of tighter
financial regulation will assist all clubs to compete while remaining
financially responsible.'

Arsenal's football turnover dropped
from 113.5m to 106m as a result of four fewer home
fixtures compared to the same period last year.

The report also
confirmed an extended partnership with Emirates which will be worth up
to 150m.

Hill-Wood added: 'The Emirates
partnership is one of the biggest sponsorship deals in the game and is
an endorsement of the commercial approach we are taking.'

The figures are for the half year to the end of November 2012.

Protests: Arsenal fans have grown frustrated with a lack of spending compared with high ticket prices

Protests: Arsenal fans have grown frustrated with a lack of spending compared with high ticket prices

Protests: Arsenal fans have grown frustrated with a lack of spending compared with high ticket prices

The Arsenal Supporters' Trust (AST) said the figures highlighted the need for the club to spend more money on team strengthening.

An AST spokesman said: 'These figures contain few surprises. They show that Arsenal yet again made a profit from the sale of their best players and that the club has large cash reserves.

'Arsenal fans have contributed to this financial health through paying some of the highest ticket prices in world football. A further improvement in the club's financial strength is expected when new TV monies and commercial deals come on stream in 2013 and 2014. AST members want to see this money used for more, and better, investment in the team'.

Manchester United block striker Angelo Henriquez from representing Chile for loan to Wigan

United anger Chilean fans by loaning striker Henriquez to Wigan

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UPDATED:

17:11 GMT, 31 December 2012

Manchester United have blocked Angelo Henriquez from representing Chile to allow him go to Wigan on loan.

The striker had planned to play for his country in the South American Under-20 championships in Argentina next month but United are keen to see him stay in England.

Henriquez, 18, has revealed United have ordered him to stay put in order to gain some Premier League experience.

Devastated: Henriquez is unhappy at United's decision not to let him represent Chile

Devastated: Henriquez is unhappy at United's decision not to let him represent Chile

The move has angered fans in Henriquez’ homeland but he insists the matter is out of his hands.

'I asked repeatedly to go and showed desire to do so,' Henreiquez told the Daily Mirror.

'But they want me to go to Wigan and keep playing in the Premier League.

'I would never say no to Chile,' he added.

Lethal: Henriquez has one goal in his only appearance for the Chilean first team

Lethal: Henriquez has one goal in his only appearance for the Chilean first team

'It would be a serious mistake, but United are not letting me go.'

The teenager will fight for a starting berth at Wigan who are set to lose Ivory Coast striker Arouna Kone to the Africa Cup of Nations next month.

He added: 'I already talked to the manager Roberto Martinez and he told me that I would have more chances.

Boost: Martinez is keen to add Henriquez to his striking options

Boost: Martinez is keen to add Henriquez to his striking options

'His idea is to have me as a substitute for Kone.'

'It will then depend on me taking advantage of the opportunity.'

Henriquez scored on his debut for Chile in a 3-1 defeat against Serbia in November and is highly rated at Old Trafford since his move from Universidad de Chile in the summer.

Theo Walcott believes Arsenal contract "will be sorted"

Walcott says Arsenal contract 'will be sorted' and he's shown Wenger his striking potential

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UPDATED:

23:09 GMT, 29 December 2012

Theo Walcott turned up the pressure on Arsenal in his ongoing contract negotiations with a stunning hat-trick in an extraordinary win over Newcastle at the Emirates Stadium.

Walcott, whose representatives are due to meet Arsenal’s chief negotiator, Dick Law, in the coming days, took his goal tally for the season to 14 in a frenzied second half which saw eight goals scored.

The 23-year-old England forward continues to thrive in the central striker’s role he covets and has made a major part of his contract negotiations.

Sign him up: Arsene Wenger is hoping Theo Walcott will commit his future to Arsenal

Sign him up: Arsene Wenger is hoping Theo Walcott will commit his future to Arsenal

Walcott said: ‘Talks are ongoing and I
am sure something will be sorted. I’ve been saying that I want to play
up front and I am showing the manager what I can do. I believe I will be
a striker and it’s about taking the opportunity when I get it.

‘I enjoy playing in whatever position but it was just telling the manager to give me the opportunities to play up front.

‘I’m not saying I’m always going to
play there but it’s just showing what I can do. Hopefully, I’ve opened a
few eyes and it’s provided a different option.’

With just six months left on his
current deal and Walcott free to sign a pre-contract agreement with a
foreign club on New Year’s Day, Arsenal will be expected to fix a firm
date for talks and to increase the 75,000-a-week offer that is on the
table.

Walcott departed the Emirates Stadium
yesterday with the match-ball held above his head and the crowd chanting
‘Sign him up’. After his side moved into fifth place in the Barclays
Premier League, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger reiterated his desire to
keep the in-form forward at the club.

‘I think he loves the club and the club love him and reciprocity in love is the most difficult thing to find,’ said Wenger.

‘The intensity of my desire is exactly
the same as before the game. My desire is to extend the contract and I
think that he belongs here and, hopefully, we can do it.

‘Commitment to a club is a long-term
process. I don’t think it should depend on one game. If he had a
disastrous game today, it would not have altered my determination to
extend his contract and to sign him. That does not depend on one game.’

The most positive sign is that Wenger
has now trusted Walcott in the central striking role, something the
London-born player was keen to establish before he confirmed his
continued commitment to the club.

Walcott has benefitted from
practising alongside Arsenal legend Thierry Henry, who is currently
training with Arsenal and is expected to sign a short-term loan deal
from the New York Red Bulls next month.

Walcott said: ‘I’ve learned a lot
from Thierry and just to have him around in training is great. You
learn from the best. He showed great qualities on loan here last season
so, hopefully, that can be sorted out.’

It must be love: The Arsenal manager was impressed with Walcott's performance against Newcastle

It must be love: The Arsenal manager was impressed with Walcott's performance against Newcastle

It was Arsenal's fourth consecutive Barclays Premier League win, which lifts them up to fifth, and midfielder Jack Wilshere insists they have not been stung by recent criticism.

'We just get on with it. We know we've got great players here and we showed it today,' he said.

'Theo was great and okay we conceded three and we're not happy about that and we'll look at that but to score seven in any game in the Premier League is a great achievement.'

Wenger was also quick to hail Newcastle's resilience, although he lamented his side's slow start.

'It was not as comfortable as the score indicated,' he added. 'We played against a good team. They were always a threat going forwards, they gave us many problems.

'I believe we started a bit nervous, not completely relaxed, and at half-time 1-1 was a fair result.

'Second half we were on the ball higher up and were much more dangerous but they always came back.'

Options: Wenger also likes to pick Olivier Giroud (right) through the middle

Options: Wenger also likes to pick Olivier Giroud (right) through the middle

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew admitted his side had no energy left in the final 20 minutes of the game.

Despite scoring three goals apiece away at Manchester United on Boxing Day and today at the Emirates Stadium, Pardew's side have come away empty-handed on both occasions.

And the former West Ham and Charlton boss is aware some of his side's defending has been unacceptable.

'The last 15-20 minutes was a fresh team against a tired team and perhaps a bit of inexperience on our bench resulted in the scoreline,' he said.

'We're just so disappointed that we didn't get something out of it before then.

'The goals we conceded before then were not, not good and that's been our problem.

'For 70 minutes it was pretty tight, I thought we were giving a good account of ourselves but their freshness and the brightness towards the end of the game was just too much for us and we couldn't cope.

'The game really hurt us today but we know at the back we need to do better.'

Tottenham"s Mousa Dembele on why he is not the new Luca Modric

I like to play the beautiful game but I'm not the new Modric, says Spurs star Dembele

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UPDATED:

23:09 GMT, 28 December 2012

Mousa Dembele is explaining why he does not score many goals — just six in the Barclays Premier League since joining Fulham in August 2010.

The Tottenham midfielder takes his time and chooses his words carefully, exhibiting the same calm, unhurried manner and balance with which he plays.

It’s not a lack of confidence, he says, but a desire to score the right kind of goal; to ‘do it nice and beautiful’. Welcome to the relaxed, laid-back world of Planet Dembele, where time seems to tick at a different pace and style is everything.

Relaxed: Mousa Dembele was confident he would make an impact in England

Relaxed: Mousa Dembele was confident he would make an impact in England

‘I just like to play, to pass the ball and dribble,’ says the Belgium star. ‘When I was young I never shot. I always wanted to dribble the ball in the goal. I don’t want to shoot because I don’t like to, but it’s different now. You have more experience and you think more.

‘Is it about scoring the perfect goal Yes, maybe. Before I always played on the street with two lampposts that were like a basketball pitch, and we could not shoot. You had to dribble and touch the ball on the posts to score. We never shoot the ball.

‘So maybe it’s because I always played on the street and I liked to do it nice and beautiful.’ He smiles, before saying ‘boom’ and mimicking a driving shot from distance.

‘I know now it’s important to shoot and have the combination,’ he adds, ‘not only to dribble but to shoot a lot as well. I try to do this more and more.

Making an impression: Dembele has impressed since making the move across London from Fulham to Tottenham

Making an impression: Dembele has impressed since making the move across London from Fulham to Tottenham

‘It’s true that I have to improve my hunger to score goals and I think in the last two years I have concentrated more on this. I don’t score a lot of goals but before I only thought about playing nice football. Now I try to be more important for the team by trying to score goals as well.’

This is just one of the reasons Dembele (below) believes we have not yet seen the best of him. Since a 5million move to Fulham from AZ Alkmaar, his rise in English football has been swift and he attracted interest from the likes of Real Madrid and

Manchester United before moving to Tottenham for 15m last August.

He is also part of an exciting Belgium team which boasts Marouane Fellaini, Eden Hazard, Vincent Kompany, Thomas Vermaelen and Jan Vertonghen, Dembele’s team-mate at White Hart Lane, who he has known since he was 11.

International talent: Dembele is part of the highly rated Belgium squad

International talent: Dembele is part of the highly rated Belgium squad

Although a ‘frustrating’ hip injury has limited Dembele’s appearances so far, Spurs have lost just one of the 10 Premier League games he has started.

‘I know where my career will go,’ he says. ‘When I came to England I had the confidence to do something and I’m happy now that I play for a big club.

‘If you hear big clubs are interested it’s always nice to know people appreciate what you do but when Tottenham said, “We want him”, I didn’t have to think twice. I didn’t think about anything else.

‘You have a lot of players here who like to play football and, for me, it’s important that I can play my game as well. I’ve always had a good feeling with Tottenham, for a long time. We have the calibre to play in the Champions League. I believe in our teams and I believe we can do something special.’

Talking a good game: Dembele gets his views across to Sportsmail's Laura Williamson

Talking a good game: Dembele gets his views across to Sportsmail's Laura Williamson

Dembele is a player who works on intuition, he says, for whom it is important to have a ‘good feeling’, but the more dynamic side of this footballer emerges when the name of Luka Modric is raised.

The current Spurs playmaker is adamant he does not feel like a replacement for the diminutive Croat, who moved to Real Madrid last summer.

‘I never saw myself as the replacement for Luka,’ says Dembele. ‘I feel like I’m a totally different player. For me I like to touch the ball as much as possible. I like to do defensive work and attack from midfield. I think I can do both.

‘If you had asked me who were the best five players in England last season he would have been in my top five. I’m very much impressed by him. But he’s a different kind of style. I don’t feel like his replacement.’

At 6ft 1in Dembele has the physical attributes to be a midfield powerhouse, yet his football education at Germinal Beerschot in Antwerp, a club who work closely with Ajax, and from playing football in the street has given him the technique and close ball- control of a creative playmaker.

You get the distinct impression,
however, that Dembele is still learning. He thinks he can improve ‘in
every aspect’ and has ‘a feeling that I’m not at my top yet’. Football
still seems new to this 25-year-old, who is certainly not a football
‘freak’, as he puts it. Far from it, in fact.

He
cannot name a footballing hero because he never used to watch his sport
on television. Even now, he can usually suffer just 30 minutes at a
time — and then it has to be a ‘top team’ featuring a player or team the
midfielder knows well.

He
prefers going to the theatre or to watch a musical in the West End.
Jersey Boys is his favourite and he knows all the Frankie Valli and the
Four Seasons songs because he has seen it three times. ‘I never watched
football,’ says Dembele.

Not prolific in front of goal: Dembele has not scored many goals since arriving in England

Not prolific in front of goal: Dembele has not scored many goals since arriving in England

‘I could not watch a game for 10 minutes. But in the last three years I’ve started watching football more and more, and now I watch quite a lot. I find it more interesting. Before, I just wanted to play football. Now I can watch it.

‘I like to watch the top teams in
different countries, like Spain or Bayern Munich in Germany. The rest I
don’t watch. I have nothing to do with that.

‘I’m not a freak. I know guys who watch every game. I’m not like that. I need to know someone or have a bit of history.

‘Ninety
minutes Impossible. Maybe 30 minutes, then 10 minutes doing something
else, then another 20 minutes. Ninety minutes is too long.’

Game face on: Dembele taking part in the EA Sports Games console challenge

Game face on: Dembele taking part in the EA Sports Games console challenge

He also found it nerve-racking watching Spurs play while he was injured and would change channel if Andre Villas-Boas’s side were winning — just in case he brought them bad luck.

‘It was strange because normally I’m very relaxed,’ he says.

‘But I was nervous because sometimes we were winning and then I would think, “If I keep watching they’re not going to win”. And I would turn the TV over and keep an eye on the live scores. I’m not really superstitious but with this, yes, I was.

‘I’m usually quite relaxed but it depends how we lose a game as well. I’m always very disappointed but sometimes it’s a bit more difficult. After the game against Everton (when Spurs conceded two late goals and lost 2-1) it took me a while to be relaxed.

‘But even more with this team because you have a feeling you can beat every team there is, so if you don’t play good or we don’t win it’s more difficult to accept it. But it’s OK, it’s life.’

Mousa Dembele was speaking at the Need for Speed Most Wanted Pro Player tournament. Need for Speed Most Wanted is out now for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, Playstation VITA, PC, iOS and Android.

Klitschko brothers Christmas message – but will they grant David Haye fight

Klitschkos: We hope all your wishes come true (does that mean you'll grant Haye his)

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UPDATED:

12:02 GMT, 21 December 2012

Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko have delivered their Christmas message but gave no hints as to their plans for 2013.

The heavyweight brothers have enjoyed another dominant year, winning five world title fights between them.

But negotiations between Vitali and former champion David Haye appear no closer to being finalised.

The elder brother's future in the ring remains uncertain after he was elected into the Ukrainian parliament.

Haye meanwhile has reiterated his desire to fight Vitali but will retire for a second time if the contract remains unsigned.

'It’s no great secret that I want to knock out Vitali Klitschko in 2013,' he told the Evening Standard.

'The contract for the fight has been agreed and is there ready to sign. Were it simply up to me, I’d be training to fight right now. Instead, I’m away from the gym and left to play the waiting game.

Desire: David Haye (right) wants to fight Vitali Klitschko next year

Desire: David Haye (right) wants to fight Vitali Klitschko next year

'Nobody seems to know if Vitali wants to set foot again in the ring, let alone face somebody as dangerous as me. What I do know is that by this time next year I will either be a retired former world heavyweight champ or the new world heavyweight champ.

'The prospect of retirement doesn’t scare me. I’ve always planned on retiring at a young age, with my faculties intact. Also, unlike some of my peers, I have plenty to get on with away from boxing.'

Wladimir, who beat Haye in Hamburg last year, has been ordered to face regular WBA champion Alexander Povetkin.

Main men: The Klitschko brothers have cleaned up the heavyweight divisions

Main men: The Klitschko brothers have cleaned up the heavyweight divisions

'We are very excited that Povetkin will be Klitschko's next opponent,' said Povetkin's promoter Kalle Sauerland.

'We consider Wladimir Klitschko to be a great champion but we also consider Alexander Povetkin to be a very serious challenger,

'[This] will turn out to be a real treat for boxing fans all over the world.'

Willian dreams of move to Chelsea

Chelsea target Willian says he dreams of leaving Shakhtar and moving to Stamford Bridge

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UPDATED:

07:26 GMT, 21 December 2012

Chelsea target Willian says he hopes to complete his dream move to Stamford Bridge this summer.

The Shakhtar Donetsk forward had hoped to move to Chelsea in the summer but a move never materialised.

Chelsea were not the only English club to show interest in the Brazilian, but they led the chase.

Looking to move: Willian says he would love to play in England

Looking to move: Willian says he would love to play in England

Willian was disappointed to see Shakhtar block a deal, but understands why there were so keen to keep him and believes he will grace one of Europe’s top divisions at some stage in the near future.

He told ESPN.com.br: 'My goal is to play for a bigger club in a high level league.'

On Chelsea, he said: 'If I tell you that I was happy, I would be lying. My desire was there, with a 20.3million offer from a big club like Chelsea. I wanted to pack my things and go, but I can’t do that as I am under contract.

'It shows how much Shakhtar like me and shows that I am doing a good job, which is why they wanted me to stay.

'I have tried to convince them many times to let me go. I know that Juventus and Chelsea have made offers to buy me and that motivates me a lot.

'The club know that I want to leave, everyone knows that. The president has told me that he’ll let me go for 24.4m and my intention is to sign for a big club.'

Jonny Wilkinson: Decision on Toulon future in February

Decision on my Toulon future can wait until February, says England legend Wilkinson

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UPDATED:

20:01 GMT, 19 December 2012

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Jonny Wilkinson will make a decision on his future at double-chasing Toulon next February.

Toulon have offered the 33-year-old, who is pushing for a Lions place next summer, a contract extension but he has yet to commit himself for another season.

He said: 'I believe the club may very well decide to stick with me, but before I make my decision I need to know if I can bring something positive to the team.'

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Jonny Wilkinson

Back in form: Wilko is playing some of the best rugby of his career with the French leaders

Wilkinson is in his fourth season
following his move from Newcastle in 2009 and has become a firm
favourite at the high-spending club, who lead the French championship
and are on course for a quarter-final place in the Heineken Cup.

The success has prompted questions of
whether Toulon can win both competitions and Wilkinson believes the
squad's strength in depth means they can deliver silverware.

He said: 'It would be the best way to reward them. If you ask me if we can do the double, I say yes.

'I take great pleasure from playing
for Toulon and especially this season. Personally, I'm never satisfied,
but I'm happy to be that way.'

Jonny Wilkinson playing for the GB and Irish Lions

Lionheart: Wilkinson could be given the chance to finish his career playing with the Lions in Australia

Wilkinson added: 'We're winning games
and progressing. 'The team are moving in the right direction but the
most important thing is the mindset of the group and the energy we
transmit.'

Wilkinson said he always has the
desire to play but added: 'Just like when I came to the end of my
contract at Newcastle, I didn't make the decision for myself but for the
club.

'The question is not, “What do I
want” but, “What do the coaches and the other players want from me”
'If I can answer that, then I can start thinking about what I would like
from a perfect world. 'But that is not a priority for me.'

Scotland are set to appoint
Australian Scott Johnson as interim head coach in succession to Andy
Robinson, who stood down after the disastrous autumn internationals, in
which the Scots lost all three matches.

The Scottish Rugby Union look set to confirm the appointment of the experienced 50-year-old before Christmas.

Johnson, who joined Robinson's coaching team last summer, has previously coached Wales and the USA Eagles.