The sporting week ahead (21/08/11)

Click to follow


It's not often you can write "Bolton is the place to be on Sunday afternoon" without tripping over the keyboard, but with Sergio Aguero among the opposition there can be no argument. Crazy as it seems, Manchester City fans are paying £350 for a shirt signed by the Argentinian – but it could cost more if he makes the same impact in his second game as his first.


No one expects England to win the World Cup but Martin Johnson knows serious questions will be asked of his black shirts if they fail to reach the semi-finals. The spotlight will be firmly trained on the paired-down squad he announces today. Wales and Scotland also name their parties so there is a real sense that hostitilies are about to begin.


Yorkshire cricket fans are starting to get the jitters about their team, who are lurking at the wrong end of Division One. So a win in the four-day game against Warwickshire, which starts today, would be welcome.


The bunch of talented hopefuls currently masquerading as Arsenal travel to Udinese knowing that Champions' League elimination would heap even more pressure on the boss – 0-0 to the Gunners would do nicely.


England's Test cricketers may be the best in the world, but the one-day team will have a score to settle in Belfast. Less than six months ago, Ireland chased down 328 in Bangalore to inflict one of the biggest shocks in World Cup history and now we have the rematch... in one of Dublin's leafiest suburbs. Kevin O'Brien, who smashed a 50-ball century last time they met and who now plays for Gloucestershire, can expect special attention.


Are the Indians still here? Apparently. They play Kent today.


England's cricketers are not alone in travelling to Dublin this week. The rugby team also hop over the Irish Sea for an arguably much tougher mission against Declan Kidney's impressive side. Such is the lop-sided nature of results between the two teams over the past decade that it would be a major shock if England come away with anything better than another drubbing. In football, Chelsea versus Norwich looks the most entertaining game in a truncated Premier League fixture list.