Sport Christmas and football go hand in hand. But for once I can take a back seat this year

After an early lesson, I’ve monitored my food and drink every Christmas for 48 years - until now

League Two preview: Back a basement blockade

Goals were at a premium in League Two on Tuesday with eight out of 11 matches finishing under 2.5 goals and we fancy more of the same on Saturday with our focus fixed on a couple of interesting tussles in particular. Let's start with Morecambe v Barnet at the Globe Arena.

Former Chesterfield boss Lee Richardson

Martin Hardy: Lost your job as a manager? Think about psychology

Life Beyond The Premier League: Psychology and football have not hit it off. There has been mistrust

Accrington Stanley appoint Leam Richardson as manager

Accrington have appointed Leam Richardson as their new manager.

Referee Mark Clattenburg

Mark Clattenburg: Factfile of the referee accused of racial abuse

Mark Clattenburg has been accused of using 'inappropriate language' during the match between Chelsea and Manchester United. Here, we take a closer look at the referee.

Standing in: Chris Hutchings took caretaker charge of Ipswich yesterday

League round-up: Palace flourish after Freedman but Hutchings can't arrest decline at Ipswich, who are walloped by Wednesday

Lennie Lawrence and Curtis Fleming continued their caretaker duties as Crystal Palace beat Leicester to move within a point of the automatic promotion places, despite speculation linking the pair with a move to Bolton. Palace co-chairman Steve Parish expects assistant manager Lawrence and first-team coach Fleming to join former manager Dougie Freedman at the Reebok following his appointment this week.

Edgar Davids

League Two preview: Edgar Davids has created buzz around Barnet

The favourites are getting heavy in League Two, presenting us with a weekend when the preferred course of action is to dabble on a couple of speculative long shots in the absence of a single solid wager. Naturally, the caveat is that the league table offers little encouragement.

Pennant answers call from Wolves

Jermaine Pennant has joined Wolverhampton Wanderers from Stoke on a three-month emergency loan. The winger, 29, has found first-team opportunities at the Potters limited of late but has played 77 times in the top flight for Stoke since he joined from Real Zaragoza, initially on loan, in August 2010.

Aston Villa sign Jordan Bowery from Chesterfield

Aston Villa have confirmed they have completed the signing of Chesterfield striker Jordan Bowery for an undisclosed fee on a three-year contract.

<b>In the mix </b><br/>
It looks certain that Fulham's attacking midfielder <b>Clint Dempsey</b> will be leaving Craven Cottage before the transfer window shuts, after being left out of Fulham's opening two games, and Arsenal are one of the favourites to sign the American.

Aston Villa join Liverpool and Sunderland in chase for Fulham forward Clint Dempsey

Aston Villa have joined the race to sign Fulham striker Clint Dempsey but the player would still prefer a move to Liverpool, Press Association Sport understands.

Paul Lambert teams are about hunger. He likes lower-league experience, hard workers, unproven players desperate to make a name for themselves

Paul Lambert hoping to add two new strikers to Aston Villa attack

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert hopes to bring in two new strikers before the transfer window shuts tomorrow, Press Association Sport understands.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain made a short appearance after replacing Lukas Podolksi in the 72nd minute

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jack Butland set for senior England call-ups after under-21 omissions

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jack Butland looked set to continue as senior players for England at the start of their World Cup qualifying campaign after being left out of the Under-21 squad today.

The Sporting Week Ahead (25/03/12)

Today

Mata: Torres turned down chance to take penalty

Juan Mata yesterday revealed that Fernando Torres had turned down a chance to end his long search for a Chelsea goal against Birmingham City on Tuesday because he wasn't "first on the list" to take penalties.

Negotiations with Robbie Fowler have stalled, says Blackpool boss Ian Holloway

Blackpool boss Ian Holloway admits talks to bring former England striker Robbie Fowler to Bloomfield Road have hit a stumbling block.

Dave Edwards injury adds to Wolves' woes

Wolves' midfield problems have increased with Dave Edwards rated “very doubtful” for Saturday's Barclays Premier League relegation battle with Blackburn at Molineux.

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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
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Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
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Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

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The air strikes were tragically real

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Britain as others see us

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How did our legends really begin?

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Lambrusco is back on the menu

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