A reader tries to predict how successful EA Sports FC will be and what will happen to EA if FIFA ’s new football game is a huge hit. By now I’m sure everyone has seen the news that EA is to drop the FIFA name after this year and will rename the series as EA Sports FC. Whether you care about football or not it’s clearly a massive change in the status quo, given FIFA is almost always the best-selling game of the year in the UK. What I don’t think many people realise though is just how big a risk this is for EA. That’s not something they want to emphasise, as it risks making them look weak, but if this goes wrong then their biggest cash cow goes the way of Pro Evolution Soccer. The other big takeaway from all this is the breathtaking arrogance of the FIFA organisation , who clearly think that the only reason the games are successful is because they’ve got their name on the box. Using that logic, they seem to think that if they make their own game, with the same name, it … [Read more...] about Ditching the FIFA licence could be the end of EA – Reader’s Feature
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Bath face further upheaval in the wake of the club's disastrous 64-0 West Country derby defeat by Gloucester after the Gallagher Premiership's bottom club suffered their worst loss in a dismal season. Bath are already set to welcome a new head coach next season in Johann van Graan , who joins from Munster along with new defence coach JP Ferreira. But Telegraph Sport understands that the futures of Stuart Hooper, the club's director of rugby, and chief executive Tarquin McDonald are unclear with the club on course for their worst season in the Premiership since 2002-03. “Changes have to and will happen to get us back to where we should be. Bath will get back to the top," a source told Telegraph Sport on Sunday, after the chastening defeat at Kingsholm piled further pressure on club staff off the field. Bath, the dominant force of English rugby in the 1990s , are currently bottom of the Premiership after four wins from 22 matches this season, having endured a dramatic … [Read more...] about Bath face big changes after horror season hits rock bottom with Gloucester thrashing
We could spend every Monday of the Premiership schedule waxing lyrical about the league’s young, gifted back-rowers. A number of them caught the eye this weekend. Ben and Tom Curry both returned for Sale Sharks. Lewis Ludlow led Gloucester past Bath. Tommy Reffell and Ben Earl continued their terrific form. Tom Pearson and Jack Willis staged a fantastic duel in Brentford . Lewis Ludlam was excellent for Northampton again. Only last month, he was the subject of this column . But another Saints flanker, with a rather different story, produced a performance that was significant in different ways. If nothing else, it reinforced that the sliding-doors nature of professional sport can throw up unexpected opportunities. With budgets tightening around the Premiership, clubs are eager to polish rough diamonds. Aaron Hinkley has endured a testing couple of years. After an all-action campaign with England Under-20 in 2019, he moved from Gloucester to Exeter for the 2020-21 season . … [Read more...] about Inside Line: How a tenacious trialist helped Northampton Saints keep their season alive
This season has shown that a ringfenced Premiership does not necessarily guarantee opportunities for youngsters. Just last month, Conor O’Shea, the Rugby Football Union’s director of performance, stressed his desire for emerging players to see more game-time . Even so, there have been a number of breakthroughs over the course of an intriguing campaign. Here is a list of six men that have established themselves at their respective clubs, with some honourable mentions thrown in. Rotimi Segun: Saracens, wing, aged 25 As will be emphasised later on, Saracens recruit promising prospects as well as developing their own. Segun, previously affiliated to Northampton Saints, was picked up as a teenager and has patiently climbed the pecking order. He only needs to glance across the backline at Nick Tompkins to see the benefit of biding your time at Saracens, and has kicked on over the past year or so. A brief yet explosive cameo against Exeter Chiefs on Sunday underlined his quality. … [Read more...] about Inside Line: The six breakthrough stars of the Premiership season
Pete Doherty has revealed how two historic incidents led to both his earlobes being bitten off. The 43-year-old indie legend opened up on a pair of gruesome altercations – one allegedly with a photographer, another with someone in the pub – and insisted he’s got ‘chunks missing’ all over his body. ‘I’ve got chunks missing all over the place. I was swinging at the paparazzi in Italy – the guy took his camera, had me by the throat and bit off part of my earlobe,’ he said. ‘Someone else bit off part of my other earlobe in a pub in Stoke. I think he just wanted a souvenir.’ The Libertines star – who has been open about his battle with addiction over the years – admitted he’s ‘hedged [his] bets’ during his rollercoaster life, but he’s always had faith in the idea of ‘happy Hollywood endings’. ‘I’m surprised I’m not dead,’ he told The Observer. ‘I’ve hedged my bets with all the scrapes, skirmishes and disasters, but I do believe in corny, happy Hollywood endings. I’m not … [Read more...] about Pete Doherty reveals BOTH his earlobes have been bitten off in gruesome exchanges
NCIS LA releases new promo Sign up for the big storylines FIRST , star interviews and exclusive access SUBSCRIBE Invalid email We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you've consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info CBS ’ hit procedural drama NCIS Los Angeles is one week away from its finale and its most recent episode has left viewers stunned. One of the biggest mysteries of the season was finally put to bed as Callen (played by Chris O’Donnell) was able to confront the person behind his deep fake. Related articles How much do Amanda and Clive Owen get paid for Our Yorkshire Farm? Eurovision's Maneskin singer Damiano sparks concern 'He's hurt!' The NCIS LA team first came across a mysterious deep fake video in the season 12 episode titled ‘Imposter Syndrome’. It was … [Read more...] about NCIS LA Viewers left ‘speechless’ after deep fake culprit is exposed ‘I was not prepared’
Back in 2020, after Saracens’ 25-17 victory over Leinster in the Champions Cup quarter-final , scrum-half Richard Wigglesworth suggested that their quality would survive the salary-cap scandal. “We are not looking for any sympathy,” he said. “But perhaps it will prove that what we built is true and special.” Wigglesworth has moved on these days. He is a player-coach at Leicester Tigers and took on Leinster in another quarter-final on Saturday . On another tough weekend for Premiership clubs in European competition, his words from two years ago felt pertinent. Since he uttered them, Saracens have bounced back from the Championship into the top flight. Over recent weeks, they have looked ominously potent as opportunities for silverware approach. They and Wasps are the only English sides that remain in the Challenge Cup, with the exits of Sale Sharks and Tigers making it two consecutive seasons without Premiership representation in the last four of the Champions Cup. Mark … [Read more...] about Inside Line: Clinical Saracens show their class – but what about the rest of the Premiership?
Agustin Creevy is playing so well for London Irish this season that you almost feel as though his date of birth needs to be triple-checked. The 37-year-old former Argentina captain has been sensational during a season in which Irish’s penchant for a dramatic comeback would have made even Lazarus applaud in admiration. Creevy has elbowed his way into the Gallagher Premiership player-of-the-season conversation in the process, scoring 12 tries in the league to make him London Irish’s top try scorer despite being almost twice the age of their latest breakout academy talent in Henry Arundell, the 19-year-old full-back. Michael Cheika, the new Argentina head coach, appears to have taken notice, with Creevy’s name mentioned for a potential Test recall ahead of next year’s World Cup . There was no guarantee of him playing for Argentina again when Creevy left to join London Irish in 2020. At the time his career was uncertain with the squad who formed the Jaguares, Argentina’s entrant … [Read more...] about Agustin Creevy a ‘quiet force of nature’ in London Irish trophy hunt
Outlander teaser: "I Am Not Alone" - Season Finale Sign up for the big storylines FIRST , star interviews and exclusive access SUBSCRIBE Invalid email We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you've consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info In Outlander , Sophie Skelton portrays Brianna Fraser - the daughter of Englishwoman Claire (played by Caitriona Balfe ) and 18th century Highlander Jamie ( Sam Heughan ). However, she is raised by Claire and her first husband Frank Randall (Tobias Menzies), who is also English. After Brianna’s birth, Claire and Frank relocate to Boston in the US to give their relationship a fresh start. Related articles Outlander’s Caitriona Balfe speaks on ‘really sad’ Fergus and Marsali Outlander’s Caitriona Balfe admits she made season 6 'difficult' … [Read more...] about Sophie Skelton accent: What is Outlander Brianna Fraser star’s real accent?
Worcester 16 Saracens 38 Max Malins produced another scintillating all-round display to raise his prospects of securing a seat on the England plane to Australia this summer. Malins stole the limelight at Sixways on a day when Owen Farrell and Billy Vunipola also showed they are relishing the fight for more silverware with Saracens. Mark McCall's side swept aside Warriors with ease in a six try performance where they did not need to hit top gear. They edged closer to a home play-off semi-final, and can do just that with a win over Northampton in three weeks time. More imminent is a European Challenge Cup visit to Gloucester on Friday night and with Malins and his team-mates in this kind of form it would be a brave man to bet against one or two more trophies coming there way this season. Malins, 25, will be hoping his end-of-season sparkle can catch the eye of Eddie Jones again and that he can add to his 14 caps in the Tests with the Wallabies in July. Saracens are starting to … [Read more...] about Max Malins bolsters England tour hopes with four tries as Saracens power on