Thoughts on the Nicklas Bendtner book/podcast/interview

Morning all, a quick Saturday round-up for you.

As an add-on to yesterday’s Arsecast with Nicklas Bendtner, I’d really recommend his interview with the always superb Donald McRae in the Guardian. The headline tells you plenty: ‘I became too fond of the lifestyle that came with the money‘.

For me, when reading the book, it was the thing that jumped out at me most. Not that it should be any surprise to anyone that he liked to party, but even so I was a bit taken aback at times at just how much alcohol was a consistent factor in his life. From an early age, as soon as the money started to come, so did the drinking, the nightclubs, the friends and the hangers-on who always float around people who are happy to spend their own money on a good time. There’s a lot of detail in … Read the rest

Sebastian Vettel pinpoints sector one weakness at the Nürburgring | 2020 Eifel GP

Scuderia Ferrari German driver Sebastian Vettel admitted that the first sector at the Nurburgring was his key weakness after lapping half a second slower than his team mate in qualifying.

The  four-times world champion dropped out in the second round of qualifying in 11th place. Team mate Charles Leclerc made it through to Q3, lapping over half a second quicker than Vettel on their final runs.

“I was pretty happy with the laps I had but I was losing a lot of time in sector one,” said Vettel. “So we need to have a look.

Both Ferrari drivers tried the medium tyre compound for their first runs in Q2 before switching to the soft rubber. Vettel said the rubber just wasn’t quick enough.

“A lot of people tried them this morning,” he said. “Already this morning we found that they were quite a bit harder to warm up.

“It wasn’t that bad, … Read the rest

Preview: Djokovic, Nadal Chase Grand Slam History At Roland Garros

When Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal step onto Court Philippe-Chatrier on Sunday, they will be contesting one of the most important matches in their storied ATP Head2Head rivalry.

The top two players in the FedEx ATP Rankings have battled for the biggest titles on the grandest stages in the sport since their first meeting at this event in 2006, but their eighth clash on the Parisian terre battue (Nadal leads 6-1) and their 56th ATP Head2Head encounter (Djokovic leads 29-26) has added importance. Both men are chasing Grand Slam history.

Here’s how to watch from 3pm CEST/9am EDT

On one side of the net, Djokovic is aiming to become the first man in the Open Era to win all four Grand Slam titles on multiple occasions. A win would also see him move just one major title away from Nadal and two behind record holder and 20-time Grand Slam … Read the rest

Party Animals Free Demo Reaches Over 100k Concurrent Steam Players

Party Animals, a game about cute animals wrestling and beating each other up, reached a concurrent player count of over 100,000 players with a free demo earlier today.

The game is a PC physics-based multiplayer brawler in the vein of Gang Beasts and Human Fall Flat where much of the fun is players flailing around while grabbing and fighting with other players or objects.

It was released as a free demo on Sunday, Oct. 4 and is featured in the Steam Games Festival: Autumn Edition, which showcases games scheduled to release later this year through May 2021 with free demos, livestreams, and developer Q&As.

According to SteamDB, the Party Animals demo reached a concurrent player peak of almost 70,000 on Thursday and Friday mornings around 10 a.m. ET.

The game hit its current peak of 108,764 around the same time earlier this morning, placing it in the top Read the rest

United have chance to sign top target who's available for just £40m

RB Leipzig’s Dayot Upamecano will reportedly be available for relatively cheap, giving Manchester United hope of sealing a transfer.

The French talent would’ve been a fantastic addition to the squad this summer and it’s believed Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and co considered making the move.

However, Upamecano ended up staying put and United didn’t end up signing a centre-back at all, instead bringing in two right wingers, a left-back, a central midfielder and a striker.

While that was disappointing to many supporters, it does leave room for Solskjaer to go back in for his key target.

However, signing the young defender won’t be easy as there many lining up to secure his valuable signature.

According to the Mirror, Upamecano has a new deal that means he can’t move anywhere until next summer but his release clause has dropped from £52m to £40m, though he will only join a Champions League … Read the rest

Jack Grealish admits his schooling of Liverpool was ‘actually a weird one’

Jack Grealish put Liverpool to the sword last Sunday – and we are not ashamed to admit it.

The Englishman was incredible at Villa Park, scoring twice, assisting three and cutting our defensive-line to shreds with multiple intricate passes.

It turns out Grealish wasn’t even fully fit for the game – and found his own personal performance unexpected and ‘weird’.

“It was actually a weird one,” Grealish told the Guardian when discussing the victory. “I had a fitness test on the day of the Liverpool game (last Sunday).

“I hadn’t even trained for the two days before it because I had a sore hamstring. I didn’t expect to play the way I did.

“(It) doesn’t come around often in your lifetime as a footballer, it was crazy.

“I’m capable of these types of performances. The aim is to do it every weekend like some of the players in this (England) Read the rest

‘Just being horrible’ – Jordan Henderson wants to see England’s nasty side against Belgium

The next England game, against Belgium at Wembley on Sunday, is bound to be one of Gareth Southgate’s toughest tests as manager.

The ‘Red Devils’ as they’re known, are ranked as the best team in the world at present, and with the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Kevin De Bruyne and others at Roberto Martinez’s disposal, it’s easy to understand why.

Liverpool midfielder and Three Lions stalwart, Jordan Henderson, has reiterated exactly what he’s expecting from his team-mates, as they go looking for the victory that would see them leapfrog Belgium at the top of the League A Group 2 table.

“We need to have the same identity all the time – that’s playing with passion and desire and just being horrible to play against,” he is quoted as saying by the Daily Star.

“It’s about being really good defensively but also having flair and attacking license to go forward … Read the rest

Moise Kean reveals that he had the chance to return to Juventus

Moise Kean has admitted that he had the chance to return to Juventus this summer before he secured his loan move to PSG.

The Italy international was developed at Juve before he earned a move to Everton last summer for a chance to play more first-team football.

His first season in English football was a struggle and he was tipped to make a return to the Italian champions.

His Everton manager, Carlo Ancelotti had claimed that the attacker had a future on Merseyside and he will not be leaving the club.

Juventus eventually made a move for Alvaro Morata, and in one of the last transfers of the summer, Kean joined PSG on a season-long loan deal.

He has revealed that he had the chance to make a return to Juventus, but he decided against taking that route with his family and he is happy to be competing with the … Read the rest

Mesut Ozil’s Arsenal career is heading for a sad end

Morning.

As expected Arsenal named their Europa League squad yesterday without Mesut Ozil or Sokratis in it. The restrictions on foreign players meant that Mikel Arteta had to choose two players to sit out our European campaign – a decision he has to make about our Premier League by October 20th too – and those were the two casualties.

It’s not a surprise based on what has happened this season. Neither player has been involved in a match-day squad, not even for the Carabao Cup, and there were efforts to move Sokratis on before the transfer deadline. It didn’t happen, but for some time it’s been obvious he has been some way down the manager’s pecking order.

When it comes to Ozil though, the lack of surprise doesn’t negate the fact it’s a big story, a major issue. He remains our highest paid player, in terms of stature and ‘star’ … Read the rest

F1, Qualifying: live results and updates | 2020 Eifel GP

The big, scary Nordschleife version of the Nurburgring was completed in 1927. But after eventually proving too big and too scary for F1, Niki Lauda’s 1976 horror crash in the German Grand Prix forced a re-think, with the more manageable, more modern Grand Prix circuit opened in 1984, with a star-studded roll-call of F1 drivers. The modern circuit got off the mark with the 1984 European Grand Prix and the 1985 German Grand Prix. Falling off the calendar until 1995, it then hosted various races – in German, European and Luxembourg Grand Prix guise – up until 2013, before its 2020 return.

The Nordschleife it ain’t – but then that’s probably for the best. The modern circuit utilises the start-finish straight of the old Sudschleife track, before the drivers then tackle the tight right-hander at Turn 1 (Haug-Haken) and go on an enjoyable high-speed plunge down to the Dunlop-Kehre hairpin. … Read the rest