Nick Szczepanik

Nick Szczepanik is a freelance sports writer contributing mainly to The Independent.

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Missing link: Gareth Bale (left) is out for at least two games; Lewis Holtby is one of those in line to replace him

Spurs won't miss Gareth Bale, insists Andre Villas-Boas

Manager has options to cover for player who has scored in past eight wins

Harry Redknapp admits that he goes home after defeats and speaks to no one

Harry Redknapp looks for first of five wins

Harry Redknapp is going through a period as troubled as that of his QPR team. He regards himself as lucky to have managed so long at the top level, but also admits that he goes home after defeats and speaks to no one – not even his dogs. So there must have been many uneasy silences at Sandbanks in recent weeks.

Outfoxed: Kazenga LuaLua goes past the Leicester defender Liam Moore

Brighton & Hove Albion 1 Leicester City 1 match report: Frustrated Nigel Pearson laments late Kazenga LuaLua leveller

Too many draws have bedevilled Brighton's campaign for a play-off place for most of this season, but yesterday's will feel like a victory after a late goal salvaged a point they hardly deserved.

Mauricio Pochettino: Despite old loyalties Saints fans have largely taken to the new manager

Southampton 2 Chelsea 1 match report: Pochettino enjoys a less toxic inheritance than Chelsea rival

Londoners' game in hand looks more like one more burden for a side stretched too thin

Southampton 2 Chelsea 1 match report: Saints loosen Blues' grip on top four

Pochettino's latest scalp leaves Chelsea hanging on to Champions League place by two points

Southampton’s Morgan Schneiderlin (third left) scores at St Mary’s
Leonardo Ulloa leaps high to head Brighton’s opening goal

Brighton 3 Crystal Palace 0: Stop the clocks – this was a win to remember, says Gustavo Poyet

Brighton and their supporters had double cause for celebration yesterday after their first home win over arch-rivals Crystal Palace since 1988 and three points that take them back into the play-off picture following three games without a victory.

Southampton 3 Liverpool 1 match report: Saints rip up the form book to cruise past Rodgers' rising Liverpool

This was a result and a match that defied form and logic, but then Southampton under Mauricio Pochettino seem to have made that something of a speciality. Since he replaced Nigel Adkins in January, Saints have lost to Queens Park Rangers and Newcastle and failed to beat Norwich and Wigan – but put a team with European ambitions in front of them and they are a different proposition.

Bobby Zamora is playing through the pain for QPR

QPR 3 Sunderland 1 match report: Harry Redknapp eyes the great escape

Goals from three of QPR manager's signings boost survival hopes and leave Sunderland fretting

Day In a Page

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?