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Dublin: 2°C Thursday 21 January 2021
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The Premier League's first British-Asian player and more of the week's best sportswriting

Time reading these will be time well spent.

soccer-fa-premier-league-arsenal-v-liverpool-highbury-stadium Arsenal's Jimmy Carter challenges for the ball with Liverpool's Paul Stewart during a 1993 Premier League game. Source: EMPICS Sport

“He would be woken at 6am by his father on frosty winter mornings and ordered to go out running in his local park to ‘get one over’ the other kids trying to make it as footballers. He would also be told to get some milk off someone’s doorstep on the way back if they had none at home. Maurice also liked to gamble and would sometimes tell Carter and his brother, who were ‘free dinner school kids like Marcus Rashford’, not to run around at playtime as there would be no evening meal because he had lost his money on the horses.”

– For the BBC, Mandeep Sanghera tells the story of Jimmy Carter, the first British-Asian player in the Premier League. 

arsenal-v-everton-fa-womens-super-league-meadow-park Republic of Ireland captain Katie McCabe on duty with Arsenal. Source: PA

“If professional female footballers want to be treated like their male equivalents, then they should also be prepared for a similar level of scrutiny. These are, after all, role models who should be setting a precedent for everyone else in the game.”

– (€) Seeing Arsenal and Manchester City players swanning off to the UAE is a kick in the teeth for young girls currently unable to play football,” writes the Daily Telegraph’s Fiona Tomas. 

nba-detroit-pistons-at-milwaukee-bucks Milwaukee Bucks and Detroit Pistons players kneel before their NBA game earlier this week. Source: SIPA USA/PA Images

“Anyone who is still having trouble recognising white privilege after what we saw this week is simply in denial. Black American NBA players know this, they have witnessed it their entire lives. And they are using their fame to get the message into homes across America and the world, hoping something will change. That’s why Milwaukee Bucks and Detroit Pistons players knelt at the start of their game on Wednesday night. It’s why Colin Kaepernick knelt in the first place.”

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– Poet, activist and former NBA player Etan Thomas writes for The Guardian in the aftermath of this week’s invasion of the US Capitol by a pro-Trump mob.

soccer-pre-season-friendly-walsall-v-leicester-city-bescot-stadium Gary Taylor-Fletcher playing for Leicester City during a 2014 pre-season friendly against Walsall. Source: Nigel French

“I had worked really hard that summer to get into shape. I was 33 going on 34 and I knew to stand any chance I had to come back that season flying… I was probably in the best shape of my career, but one comment like that absolutely knocked me senseless. I didn’t want to go into training. I would get to training and I would have mini panic attacks. My stomach would be in knots but I had to hide it.”

– (€) Gary Taylor-Fletcher opens up to The Athletic’s Rob Tanner about the toll that social media abuse took on his mental health. 

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