Real sacked coach Julen Lopetegui last week and Pochettino’s recent statement that he had his “worst feeling” at Tottenham in his four-and-a-half years at the club fuelled rumours that he could soon be on his way to Spain. On Thursday, the Argentine said he had no interest in the Real job and also attempted to dispel the notion that he was unhappy about the delay in the completion of Spurs’ new stadium.
* Two times world champion Fernando Alonso suspects Sunday’s Brazilian Grand Prix may be his last real chance of adding to his career points tally before he leaves Formula One at the end of the month. Alonso has not been on the podium since he was at Ferrari in 2014 and points have been hard to come by since he joined McLaren in 2015 at the beginning of a failed partnership with Honda.
* Guingamp, the bottom side in France’s Ligue 1, have appointed Jocelyn Gourvennec as their new coach, the club said on Thursday. Guingamp sacked Antoine Kombouare on Wednesday after just one win in 12 games left them at the bottom of the league.
* Players and officials from Galatasaray, including coach Fatih Terim, and Fenerbahce were suspended for up to eight matches by the Turkish FA’s disciplinary board (PFDK) after a mass brawl broke out at the end of last Friday’s Super League fixture. Members of both teams were seen exchanging blows after they ran on to the pitch following the 2-2 draw, while sections of the crowd hurled abuse and booed from the stands.
* Everton have been fined 500,000 pounds by the Premier League and banned from registering some academy players for two years after breaching young player recruitment rules by offering prohibited inducements. The Premier League said in a statement that Everton admitted to offering inducements to a player and his family to encourage him to register with the club.
* Five times world champion Lewis Hamilton feels Formula One risks having too many races and should go back to a shorter season. Speaking on Thursday ahead of the Brazilian Grand Prix, the Mercedes driver told reporters he would prefer fewer rounds.
* The Italian government has given its support to a joint bid by Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo for the 2026 Winter Olympics, International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach said on Thursday. The two cities, Calgary and Stockholm are the only three definite candidates to host the event, and a decision is due in June.
* Bournemouth striker Callum Wilson has been called into the 28-man England squad for the forthcoming friendly game at home to the USA and the UEFA Nations League tie against Croatia.
* Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Mousa Dembele has been ruled out until the New Year after sustaining ligament damage to his right ankle, the Premier League club said on Thursday. The 31-year-old Belgium international was forced off in the first half of Tottenham’s 3-2 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers and missed Tuesday’s 2-1 Champions League victory over Dutch side PSV Eindhoven.
* Barcelona defender Jordi Alba has been recalled to the Spain squad for the Nations League decider away to Croatia and friendly with Bosnia. Chelsea’s Marcos Alonso and Real Madrid’s Nacho were notable absentees in defence, along with Atletico Madrid midfielder Koke.
* Leicester City players will wear shirts with club owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha’s name embroidered on them when they play their first home match since the Thai tycoon was killed in a helicopter crash, the Premier League club said. Vichai was one of five killed in the crash near the King Power Stadium after Leicester’s last home league match on Oct. 27. Leicester said they will pay tribute to Vichai with a video presentation when they host Burnley in the league on Saturday, while supporters have also planned a march to the venue.
* A total of 150,000 tickets for the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019 have been sold since September, according to FIFA on Thursday.
* Anthony Martial on Thursday returned to the World Cup winner France’s squad for the first time in eight months due to his strong performance in Manchester United.
* Malaysian badminton legend Lee Chong Wei pledged on Thursday to try his best to continue his career for “the love of the sport”. Speaking at his first press conference since seeking treatment for nose cancer abroad, Lee said he loves the sport too much to quit but would not compromise on his health.