This weekend we had the most thrilling game of the Autumn Nations Cup so far, one of the most bizarre penalty shoot-outs in football history, and the latest twist in boxing’s battle to embrace YouTube celebrities. Here are five stories you might have missed…
Logan Paul drops a ‘W’ on Floyd Mayweather
After Floyd Mayweather’s pronouncement on Twitter last week that “These YouTube girls better find some Barbie dolls to play with cause I’m not the one for the kid games” before threatening to give Logan Paul the same beating he gave Conor McGregor, you just knew that Paul was going to respond.
Paul, who lost his only pro fight to fellow YouTuber KSI in 2019, initially tweeted “50-1” as a suggestion that he would break the undefeated former boxer’s 50-0 run, but this weekend he stepped up the war of words by posting a video in which he told Mayweather to “sign the f**king contract, bro”.
He had even taped A4 sheets to his gym wall spelling out Mayweather’s name, claiming Floyd hadn’t signed up to fight him because he couldn’t spell his own name. When the ‘W’ from Mayweather fell to the floor during filming, Logan remarked, “Well you ain’t gonna get the ‘W’ anyway.”
Could this absolute mismatch really happen?
Scotland edged out by France
While England continued their fine start to the Autumn Nations Cup with a Jonny May-inspired win over Ireland at Twickenham, Scotland fell just short of getting the draw they needed against France to secure top spot in Group B.
Duncan Weir kicked five penalties as the home side matched the French side stride for stride for much of the encounter, but Virimi Vakatawa’s sole try in the early stages of the second half proved to be the difference as the visitors clinched a 22-15 victory. Despite some stubborn defending throughout, Scotland couldn’t prevent their five-game winning run coming to an end.
With Scotland already guaranteed a bonus-point win from their cancelled fixture against Fiji next week, France will need to win against Italy in Paris to finish top of the group.
Medvedev wins the ATP crown
Having beaten world number one Novak Djokovic in the group stage and world number two Rafael Nadal in the semi-finals, Daniil Medvedev became the first man in the 50-year history of the ATP Finals to take out all of the globe’s best three tennis players in beating Dominic Thiem in Sunday’s final at the O2 Arena.
Not that you’d know it from his reaction. The Russian responded to his 4-6, 7-6, 6-4 victory with nothing more than a shrug, saying afterwards, “This is going to be my thing. In tennis I think I’m probably the first one. Definitely in football I’ve seen players who do not celebrate.” He later explained that he had decided on not revelling in his victories back at the 2019 US Open final after being booed by the crowd in the Arthur Ashe Stadium as he lost in five sets to Nadal.
His victory this weekend keeps in at number four in the year-end world rankings. Now that’s something to celebr… oh, wait.
Greenwood undone by the law of the ex
How many times have we seen a former player come back to wreak havoc on their ex-employers? Well it didn’t quite work out that way for Alex Greenwood against Manchester United this weekend.
The defender, who was United’s first-ever captain after signing from Liverpool in the summer of 2018, left Leigh Sports Village for Lyon a year later. And after collecting a Women’s Champions League winners medal this summer with the French giants, Greenwood returned to England to cross the Manchester divide with Manchester City.
So when she stepped up to take City’s final penalty in the Continental Cup derby on Saturday with United leading 4-3, something significant was bound to happen. There was to be no happy return to her former stomping ground for Greenwood, as her effort crashed off the underside of the bar and bounced out, clinching a victory for the red side of the city.
Penalty chaos in Orlando
There has simply never been a shootout like this one. After a 1-1 draw against New York City FC in the MLS play-offs, Orlando City looked to have won the spot-kicks when goalkeeper Pedro Gallese saved from Valentin Castellanos with his side already 4-3 up.
But when Gallese was adjudged to have been millimetres off his line from the kick, he was shown a second yellow card and a retake was awarded, meaning players and coaches who had already left the field had to be waved back. Yet just as Castellanos was about to step up against substitute goalkeeper Brian Rowe, referee Allen Chapman stepped in the way and explained that he had been mistaken in allowing Rowe to come in as a sub midway through the shootout. As a result, defender Rodrigo Schlegel had to take over between the posts.
Remarkably, Schlegel later saved from Gudmundur Thorarinsson, sparking scenes of wild jubilation as the Orlando players lost track of the scoreline. At 5-5, they still had to score themselves to win. But after Benji Michel slotted home, Orlando could finally celebrate one of the most bizarre penalty shoot-outs you’re ever likely to see.