Daily Briefing

Today’s back pages: Dele Alli is ‘in the dock’ over coronavirus joke and England plan to rotate pace bowlers

A round up of the sport headlines from UK newspapers on 11 February

Dele in the dock

One story dominates the back pages this morning and that’s the hot water Dele Alli is in after his joke about the coronavirus. 

“Dele in the dock” is the headline in The Daily Telegraph, with the paper adding that the Tottenham and England midfielder stands accused of “dangerous racism” after appearing to mock the spread of the virus in China.

“Masking for trouble” screams the Daily Mirror, a reference to the video posted by Alli on Snapchat last Thursday in which he appeared in an airport lounge wearing a face mask. The camera then showed a man of Asian appearance before a close up of a bottle of antiseptic hand wash.

The Daily Express says that although Alli has since deleted the video and apologised for the joke, he could still be banned by the Football Association (FA). 

Apparently they are “keen to clamp down on the abuse of social media and have a whole raft of measures that they can use against Alli”.

The Guardian reports that the FA have written to the Spurs star “asking for his observations”, a process that could end in a charge of misconduct.

If he is punished, Alli could expect to receive a hefty fine similar to the one incurred by Bernardo Silva earlier this season.

In a tweet the Manchester City playmaker “appeared to compare his team-mate Benjamin Mendy to the caricature of a black boy found on the packaging of a Spanish confectionary brand”. 

The Guardian says Silva was hit with a £50,000 fine and was “asked to attend an awareness course”. 

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England’s asset management

Metro and the Guardian report on plans by England cricket head coach Chris Silverwood to rotate his pace duo of Jofra Archer and Mark Wood in order to ensure they avoid injury as much as possible. 

The two regularly clock speeds of more than 90mph but the physical demands of bowling at such a pace have meant the pair have spent as much time on the treatment table in recent months as they have at the wicket. 

Archer has been troubled this year by an elbow injury that has ruled him out of England’s upcoming tour to Sri Lanka, and that has led to a rethink by Silverwood. 

“Maybe they don’t have to play every game,” he told reporters. “Maybe they can play one on, one off - every now and then they play together. That’s an exciting prospect. 

“My dream would be to have three fast bowlers all working together at any given point - one of them sat out, getting his feet up, getting the rest that he needs. And we can keep him on the park for longer. It’s all part of managing our assets.”

Today’s sport headlines

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