Category Archives: Sport

Who will win the Premier League?

After 37 matches, 39 weeks, and a total of 1,042 points won between 20 teams, the 2018/19 season of the Premier League is about to come to an end.

But who will lift the trophy?

Luckily there isn’t a long wait, with the final matches taking place in two days time. But football fans will be paying attention to two teams in particular.

Manchester City are currently at the top of the table, but Liverpool are just one point behind them. All City needs to do is draw or win their game against Brighton & Hove Albion to stay on top, but Liverpool have to win against the Wolverhampton Wanderers to keep their hopes of lifting the trophy for the first time alive.

Neither team have lost any of their last five matches, both being on top form in the final stages of the season. But with Liverpool fresh from their win against Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final on Wednesday, they might have the momentum needed to win their final match.

WNOL asked football fans in London who they thought would finish at the top, and everyone backed Manchester City.

“I think City will win, I want Liverpool but city are in form”, says North Londoner Alexander.

Charlotte agrees. “City because they’re not going to lose their last game”.

“They have effectively a one-win advantage over Liverpool, and even if Liverpool win at Wolves this weekend I really can’t see City losing or drawing at Brighton” says Birmingham-born Laura.

Jody, from Essex, also thinks the Manchester team have it in the bag “because they are better”.

Meanwhile, Tottenham, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United are all fighting for a place in the top 4 to compete in the Champions League next season.

Both Chelsea and Arsenal are on form after winning their semi-finals on Thursday to form an all-England Europa League final.

Chelsea and Tottenham currently hold third and fourth spot respectively with 71 and 70 points, but with only one point between the two teams, and three points between Tottenham and Arsenal, anything could change by the time the whistle blows on Sunday.

Featured image courtesy of Nathan Rogers from Unsplash

All English final: fans face difficult travel options

English football is experiencing a monumental moment in their history. Liverpool will face Tottenham in Madrid for the champions league final, whilst Arsenal will face Chelsea in the Europa league final.

The all-English final sheds light on the question: Is it necessary for fans to travel to Madrid, Spain and Baku, Azerbaijan when the finals could be played at home? This question is brought up as fans face difficult travel options to watch the all-English finals.

However, there are a lot of factors involved such as both league competitions being designated for potential finalists to play at a particular destination. The destination for the finalists are decided by UEFA Stadium Infrastructure Regulations, prior to the start of the competition. And stadiums are selected by categories depending on the maximum capacity.

With fans of all four English clubs trying to get the cheapest possible tickets, flights and hotel costs are increasing due to high demand. The 67,000 capacity at Wanda Metropolitano means Liverpool and Tottenham fans will have to spend a lot of money to get the best seats in the house – tickets would set fans back over £500.

The 68,700 capacity at Baku, Azerbaijan means that Chelsea and Arsenal fans will have to spend just as much money to witness which club qualifies for the champions league next season. As fans will have to travel more than 2,468 miles to watch the game, there are no flights scheduled between London and Baku on the week of the final. 

There are alternative ways of getting to Azerbaijan. This includes public transport such as trains. But that would take more than four days as you will pass through seven countries. Another way of getting there is driving, but that would take more than 58 hours. Fans face a dilemma of not being able to see the Londoners live due to chaotic travel.

Arsenal posted on their website that UEFA will give both clubs an allocation of just 6,000 tickets each for the match. However, the limited tickets and travel puts fans in a difficult position. Arsenal are currently working with Thomas Cook to offer fans seats on an aircraft, but there is limited availability due the final being during half term week and after bank holiday.

Nevertheless, we are approaching the Europa League final on the 29th this month, and the Champions League final on the 1st of June. Fans of all clubs are quickly buying tickets, hotel rooms, and are saving up for what will be one of the most glorious weeks in English football. The premier league race is also on, who will take the trophy: Liverpool or Manchester City?

Featured image source: https://www.pexels.com/photo/aerial-photography-of-stadium-2039938/

 

Women in football: there’s still a long way to go

With the women’s FA Cup Final taking place tomorrow aftertoon, and being broadcast by BBC One from Wembley Stadium for the fourth year in a row, it’s clear that female football has come a long way. But with many people still unaware of the match, and not invested in women’s competitions, it seems they’re not quite as equal as their male’s counterparts.

WNOL spoke to the University of Westminster male football captain, Bryan Ijeh, about what needs to be done to improve coverage of women’s football matches.

“I think that footballing authorities have not been giving enough support to the women’s game. The lack of media coverage has made the women’s game less attractive to invest in as a sponsor, which is unlike the men’s game who have huge T.V and media deals in place.”

The BBC cover most of the women’s game, including the FA Cup and the World Cup, which is taking place in France this June.

 

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The women’s FA Cup Final will be held at Wembley Stadium for the fifth year in a row

“If there is a proper effort made to put forth women’s football just as much as it is done with the men’s game it will certainly increase its following. If they are portrayed in the same manner with endorsement deals and publicity, people should automatically take more of an interest” Ijeh says.

More and more female players are becoming household names, such as Lucy Bronze and Steph Houghton MBE, who captains Manchester City and is playing in tomorrow afternoon’s final. But they are far from the likes of Kane, Sterling, and Alli, who everyone knows by their surname.

The 2015 women’s World Cup was a big success in putting women’s football on the map, with many Brits watching England’s matches in Canada four years ago. And with a record number of spectators expected to watch the FA Cup Final on Saturday, the interest seems to be on the rise.

“The seeds are being planted and now it is crucial that the footballing authorities and all those involved keep pushing for more equality in the sport”, Ijeh explains.

Women’s FA Cup Final 2019: everything you need to know

With the big match only a day away, here’s everything you need to know so you’re ready for one of the biggest matches of the year.

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Infographic created by Alysia Georgiades

When is it?

The Final kick-off is at 5:30pm on Saturday 4th May.

Where can I watch it?

BBC One are broadcasting the match live from 17:10, but you can also buy tickets for the event here or visit a London pub to catch the game.

What teams are playing?

Manchester City Women are playing against West Ham United Women.

Manchester City Women beat Chelsea Women 1-0 in the semi final in April, whilst West Ham United Women tied 1-1 with Reading Women, but beat the opposition on penalites 4-3.

Manchester City won their first title back in 2017, and are looking to gain their second tomorrow, whilst West Ham United are the underdogs having never appeared in the final. Will they be able to hold their nerve for their maiden trophy?

Where are they playing?

At Wembley Stadium, which has hosted the women’s final since 2015. A record number of spectators are expecting to show their support, after more than 45,000 attend last year’s match.

Who are the captains?

Steph Houghton MBE captains Manchester City, and Gilly Flaherty is heading West Ham United.

Houghton joined Manchester City on January 1st 2014, and was a key player for England’s World Cup qualification, where she also has the role of captain.

Gilly Flaherty has previously played for Arsenal and Chelsea in her career, with her having an important role on the latter’s team, helping them lift the FA Cup trophy in 2015. She was also Chelsea’s vice-captain, and has played for England nine times in four years.

Who are the teams’ managers?

Matt Beard is the manager of West Ham United Women, appointed back in June 2018. The 41 year old has previously managed Liverpool to back-to-back Women’s Super League One titles in 2013 and 2014, and has recently extended his contract with the Hammers for the 2019-20 season.

The manager of Manchester City Women has been Nick Cushing since November 2013. He led them to their FA Cup title in 2017, and has picked up four other titles in two other competitions. He has also helped them reach the Champions League semi-finals two years in a row, whilst his team is also sitting in second place in the Women’s Super League table after losing no matches this season.

Featured image courtesy of maxopt from Pixabay

Are you running towards an early grave?

In an age where we have a thorough understanding of our bodies and knowing that exercise is a crucial part to leading a healthy lifestyle, there are those who take it to the extreme. Running for pleasure has risen in popularity, and is now one of the most practiced and most popular sports in the world, with over 60 million people engaging themselves in the sport regularly across the world. 

I’m sure you will have already heard a lot of the amazing things that running can do for your body and mind, such as strengthening the heart, boosting energy levels, better sleep and the benefit of burning serious calories. 

When you run, your heart beat faster and harder, pumping blood around your body faster; running consistently means your body can do this naturally more efficient. Another thing your body would learn to do better is burning calories, as running boosts your metabolism, which means you burn calories at a higher rate when you consistently exercise. 

Another benefit to running is the endorphin high many people call a ‘runners high’ which is a boost in serotonin levels which is an instant mood booster. This healthier brain improves your memory, which leads to protection against dementia. 

All in all it sounds like a super-drug, but with all these benefits, surely there has to be things that go wrong?

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Those who enjoy running might aim higher than your average 5km, and try to tackle the beast of the running world. Marathons. 

The first marathon race was created in 1896 to honour the legendary run of the Greek messenger Pheidippides from Marathon to Athens. There is no way of knowing if this was myth or fact, but Marathons have become more and more popular, with only around 500,000 completing one in the US in 2014. 

Marathons are 26.2 miles long (42km), with the average time being around four and a half hours. What sort of pressure does it have on your body? And does extreme running actually cause any harm to your system? 

Marathon runners have spoken before on feeling sore, achey and run down for days after they’ve completed it. Your body would be experiencing inflammation and swelling around your knees, as they take most of the impact, and a lower immune system means you have a higher chance of getting a cold afterwards. 

This doesn’t stop people from going out and completing these marathons every year. “Before I took up running I had real problems with my knees. Not any more, a couple years of running and i am leaner, stronger, my resting heart rate is massively reduced and my knees don’t hurt anymore” says Steven James from Manchester. 

There has been a new trend forming within the running community of ‘ultra-marathons’ which is considered as anything over the 42 kilometres of a marathon, with the average being around 50km. For an average person, these miles could seem crazy, as this is around the distance between London and Bedford. 

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“I have run an ultra and felt it at mile 25, however the cross training (swimming and biking) really made a difference, I felt good!” Says Linda Ross from Stevenage. 

This increase in milage can take months to train for, however if not done safely or consistently, could lead to fatal injuries. Across last decade, 42 people died whilst running due to cardiac events, with your chance of a heart attack heightened 24 hours after intense exercise.

Marathons can literally destroy your body, with many runners experiencing acute kidney injuries, a compromised immune system, temporary loss of fluid in the spine and a huge break down in muscles. 

However, overall, there are no long term effects of harm to the body when running long distance, with many people preferring it to shorter distances. However, with regular training, extensive build ups and cross training, your body will benefit more from your mission to beat 26.2 miles than cause injury. 

Are Skateboarders Happy with the Olympics?

As you can read in the piece of information above, on the interview with Larry King, Tony Hawk spoke in favour of skateboarding in the Olympics, even though his discipline, vert ramp, which consist on a half-pipe, it is not currently included in the Olympic programme.

But Hawk is not the only one that has spoken its mind about this topic. Nyjah Huston, Nike sponsored professional skateboarder who won several of the stops in the Street League from the year 2011 to 2019, stated on a Forbes interview that: “Now, everyone is working on getting [skateboarding] in the Olympics for 2020, which I hope happens. I want to see more kids out there getting good at skating, having fun with skating. It’s growing so much and people realize you can make a living off of skateboarding”.

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KTown cruisin

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On his side, we can find more skaters who share the same view. This is the case of Evan Smith. Professional rider for DC shoes who also competes in the Street League, explained on the Grey Skate Magazine that: “I think it’s cool. I mean what would you do if someone asked you to go to the fucking Olympics and you felt like you could do it? You’d probably say yes. You’d probably push yourself, if you were smart”.

On the other hand, there are also prominent skaters that have a different vision about skateboarding in the Olympics. For instance, Tristan Funkhouser, a young professional skater for DC Shoes, who explained on a video for Ollie Shit that: “It is not natural. I personally don’t think it would be cool. That’s not what skating is, skating is an expression of yourself. You can’t just put points on that”.

Another professional skater which is against the Olympics but for different reasons is Boo Johnson. The Diamond Footwear skateboarder said on an interview for elpatin.com that: “If they ask me to go to the Olympics I wouldn’t men, like, they are definitely drug testing and you know me. So… that’s not gonna happen”.

The last statement shows a different perspective in the world of skateboarding, drugs. Drugs have always been linked to the skateboarding community. This affirmation can be checked on the Mockmouth article in which they talk about skateboarding legends having troubles with drug addiction.

Another example which connects skateboarding with the consumption of drugs is the case of Pedro Barros. The professional skateboarder chosen for the Brazilian Olympic team, went through a drug test in 2018. According to the ABDC (Autoridade Brasileira Controle de Dopagem), the authority in charge of anti-doping in Brazil, the results of this test confirmed that Barros consumed THC (Marihuana).

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🛑

A post shared by Pedro Barros (@pedrobarrossk8) on

Talking about national Olympic teams, Brazil together with Norway are the only ones that have released their official lists. The Scandinavian nation has chosen a humbler team with skaters who are unknown for the skating community. Except for one of them, Karsten Kleppan, who rides for Nike and has participated in the Street League and also in the X Games in 2016 and 2018 respectively.

On the Brazilian side, apart from Barros, which could be disqualified for the 2020 Olympics, Brazil has other big names such as: Luan Oliveira, Felipe Gustavo and Tiago Lemos, skating for Nike, Adidas and DC Shoes respectively. On the female category they have one of the biggest stars, Leticia Bufoni who skates for Nike. All these Brazilians currently skate on the Street League, so it could be said that Brazil is going to be a big opponent to defeat.

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CBSK ANUNCIA SELEÇÃO BRASILEIRA DE SKATE PARK E STREET DE 2018 Um outro passo inédito foi dado pela Confederação Brasileira de Skate – CBSK para fortalecer e dar ainda mais representatividade ao Skate brasileiro como esporte olímpico. Bob Burnquist, um dos maiores ícones do Skate mundial e atual Presidente da Confederação, anunciou junto com Sandro Dias, outro grande nome mundial do esporte e atual Diretor da CBSK, a formação da 1a Seleção Brasileira de Skate nas modalidades olímpicas Park e Street. A formação Em 2018, os nomes dos atletas que integrarão a Seleção Brasileira de Skate Park e Street, foram escolhidos através de um comitê técnico. A partir de agora, a convocação é anual e a partir de 2019, a Seleção será sempre formada através do Calendário Brasileiro de Skate da CBSK do ano anterior, onde os 3 primeiros skatistas do ranking estarão automaticamente convocados. Além disso, a CBSK, através do seu comitê técnico, indicará o atleta para a vaga restante. O suporte A CBSK dará aos atletas integrantes da Seleção Brasileira, suporte e recursos para o desenvolvimento e aperfeiçoamento da prática do skate de alto rendimento. Ajuda financeira, recursos humanos, departamento médico exclusivo, centros de treinamento, viagens e participações em eventos internacionais, estão entre as ações de suporte ao desenvolvimento esportivo dos atletas da Seleção Brasileira de Skate. A estréia O Skate será um dos esportes estreantes em Olimpíadas, mas o planejamento da CBSK é que o skate brasileiro tenha um desempenho parecido com o dos esportes tradicionais, lutando por algumas medalhas, já na 1a participação. É com esse foco na preparação dos atletas, que a CBSK pretende seguir rumo ao projeto olímpico de Toquio em 2020. @timebrasil #somostodosCBSK #somosselecaoCBSK #timebrasil @bobburnquist @diassandro

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Men and women in sport: can they be equal?

Team GB recently announced they are likely to have more female athletes than male participants at next year’s Olympics in Tokyo, which will be a historic moment for women in sport.

But as much as this reflects their participation in a wide range of events, it doesn’t explain if there are differences in rules.

For some sports, it is argued women are not biologically able to produce the same power as men, and are given their own event. This is most commonly seen in sports like athletics and swimming, where the differences in speed between both genders is represented by world, Olympic and championship records, which men hold the fastest times for.

But most of the events in both sports are the same. In athletics, the only differences in Olympic events are the hurdles – where men compete over 110m and women over 100m – the men’s decathlon and the women’s heptathlon, and women not having a 50k race walk.

And it’s even better news for swimming, where the only event women don’t compete in is the 1500m freestyle. But this is set to change in Tokyo, as the IOC announced its addition to the women’s competition.

It seems physical differences can mean unfair competitions if men and women participated against each other, but this is not always the case.

Along with mixed events becoming increasingly popular in sports including swimming, athletics and diving, there are mental sports where women could compete with the men, but don’t.

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Mixed relay events have been added competitions in the last few years, and have been popular among fans and athletes (image courtesy of Pexels)

In snooker, women have their own tournaments, but for many years people have questioned why they cannot compete against men. Reanne Evans, an 11-time world champion in the women’s event, was invited to the main world championships in 2017, and historically won her first round qualifying match, before losing in the next round. Despite this, many female players are yet to appear in the main draw of a ranking tournament.

Sport has come a long way in representing both genders equally, but many sportsmen are asking for even more change. If they receive enough support from governing bodies, more events will be added in future competitions.

 

Animation by Alysia Georgiades

Video Sources:
https:www.reuters.com/article/us-tennis-wimbledon-anderson-isner-factb/factbox-longest-mens-singles-matches-at-wimbledon-idUSKBN1K32PE
https://www.elitedaily.com/sports/difference-womens-gymnastics-vs-mens-gymnastics/1582261
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/diving/30298816
https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-olympics-tokyo/ioc-approves-mixed-athletics-swimming-relays-for-2020-idUKKBN19028N
Music:
https:www.bensound.com

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