EVERY WEEKDAY MORNING,TheScore.ie brings you the stories you need to know before 9am.
1. #EUROPA LEAGUE “Thursday night, Channel 5″ turned out not to be so bad for the Manchester clubs, as both City and United scored important away wins in the Europa League Round of 32.
Elsewhere, Valencia did it on a cold Thursday night in Stoke. Mehmet Topal’s first-half cracker gave them a 1-0 win at the Britannia.
2. #RABODIRECT PRO12 Leinster and Ulster are both in action in the RaboDirect Pro12 tonight. Ulster play the Blues in Cardiff (ko 7:05pm) while Leinster host the Scarlets in the RDS (7:35pm).
Connacht yesterday strengthened their front-row by taking Munster tighthead Peter Borlase on loan. Borlase, 26, joins Eric Elwood’s men with immediate effect as cover for the injured Dylan Rogers (hamstring) and Rodney Ah You (foot).
3. #POLITICAL FOOTBALL Scotland’s First Minister yesterday weighed into the debate about Rangers’ current financial meltdown.
Alex Salmond believes that the future of Scottish football and “the fabric of the country” could be under threat if Rangers are allowed to go out of business.
The SNP leader has made representations to both Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and Rangers to come to some sort of agreement over the tax debt saw the Ibrox club placed in administration this week.
4. #GAA Croke Park chiefs yesterday launched a development plan which they expect to help level the playing field in hurling. “I welcome the National Hurling Development Plan and the comprehensive nature of the proposals,” GAA president Christy Cooney said today at Croke Park.
Here are the six key proposals in it.
5. #STARTER’S ORDERS There’s a big day of pre-Cheltenham racing in Britain today, with last weekend’s abandoned “Super Saturday” card rescheduled for Newbury this afternoon.
Our racing man Declan Smyth has been up all night going over the form. If you haven’t checked his tips for today’s big races, now’s a good time to do it.
6. #GOLF Phil Mickelson picked up where he left off last weekend to shoot a five-under-par 66 on day one of the Northern Trust Open in California.
Padraig Harrington was one-over-par through 16 holes before play was suspended due to darkness.