Stephen Scullion:  “You do the sport because you love it and you’re passionate and want to see how good you can be. I ran 12 miles over a mountain this morning because I enjoy it, and I’d do that whether the Olympics are happening or not.”  Photograph:  Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

The best sports stories are the ones where we can also find ourselves Con Houlihan always told me the good sportswriter will find the best stories in(...)

Jack Charlton and Billy Bremner having breakfast in bed after securing the FA Cup the day before. Photo: Varley Picture Agency

Big Jack was unimpressed. “What the fook you doing ’ere?” he said. It was a question, possibly, though in the moment it felt like an accusation. “Eh,(...)

The rush to coo over three points gained against Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s predecessor José Mourinho left the previous two Premier League games an afterthought.  This thinking needs to change. Photograph: Lynne Cameron/EPA

Manchester City believe in Pep Guardiola. Manchester United want to believe in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. There are many recent comparisons and difference(...)

 Barry McGuigan  in action against  Eusebio Pedroza  at Loftus Road Stadium,  London in 1985. “I thank God every day that I didn’t beat McGuigan,” said Pedroza. “If I had, I would not have left that place alive. They would have torn me to shreds.” Photograph: Steve Powell/Getty Images

Six years after the event, in the midst of a comeback that ended ignominiously in the gym of a Detroit high school, Eusebio Pedroza gave an interview (...)

In his introduction to “McIlvanny On Boxing”, the sports writer gave an insight into his modus operandi when it came to Muhammad Ali – not to mention the advantages he had as a Sunday writer. He died aged 84 last Thursday. File photograph: PA Wire

We are a self-important people, sportswriters. Like, even just read that sentence back. You’d be hard pressed to start a Monday morning with much more(...)

Legendary sports journalist Hugh McIlvanney has died aged 84. Photograph: The Times

Hugh McIlvanney, widely considered to be one of the finest British sports journalists, has died at the age of 84. The Football Writers’ Association, (...)

 The Turf pub sign in Burnley  depicts an image of ex-player, Northern Ireland’s James McIlroy, who was instrumental to the club’s league title success in 1960. Photograph:  Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

When Jimmy McIlroy died in August, it was a moment to return to his autobiography, Right Inside Soccer. It was written in 1960 when Burnley had just w(...)

The Tartan Army get behind their team in  Argentina. Photograph: Allsport UK/Allsport

“My name is Ally MacLeod, and I am a born winner!” And we all know how this story pans out. Let’s cut the man some slack, though, for he wasn’t quite(...)

Wide strikers such as Mohamed Salah of Liverpool, above, rarely cross and they shoot at goal as often as traditional centre-forwards. Photograph: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Mohamed Salah’s goal against Chelsea meant that he finished the weekend as top scorer in the Premier League. With 10 goals in his first 13 Premier Lea(...)

The statule in honour of  Jock Stein outside Celtic Park in Glasgow. Photograph:  Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

When Jock Stein returned to manage Celtic in March 1965, the club had gone almost eight years without a trophy. A little over two years later, they w(...)

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