Yes, the French football team knows its qualifying group for Euro 2020.
Yes, Montpellier is the surprising dolphin of the PSG in Ligue 1.
Yes, the French women's handball team has revived after an inaugural defeat.
But something else has happened this weekend in the world of sport. And you may have missed it.
The three lessons of the weekend
- Your beginnings you will succeed
That was to be expected. For his first race of the season, in Pokljuka, Slovenia, biathlete Martin Fourcade has assumed his boss status. Installed in third position of the French mixed relay, accompanied by two other Olympic champions of the discipline (Simon Desthieux and Anaïs Bescond), Martin Fourcade has perfectly started his season.
Put in good position by the relay of Anaïs Bescond and Justine Braisaz, the five-time Olympic champion was impeccable shooting (ten out of ten) and serene on skis, even if he found himself "A bit stiff". Party behind his Finnish opponent, he has made up his mind before handing over to Simon Desthieux. Despite a last hard shot, the last runner resisted the return of the Swiss team, to offer the French team biathlon his first win of the season.
This first race of the season of Martin Fourcade marked the beginning in competition of his collaboration with two new coaches. Vincent Vittoz, former world champion of cross-country skiing (in pursuit in 2005) has succeeded Stéphane Bouthiaux, coach of the Blues Biathlon for eleven years. For the rifle part, it is the Italian Patrick Favre who joined the French team, to replace Franck Badiou.
🇫🇷 Martin Fourcade makes crack the Finn thanks to a faultless standing shot, the French take the lead of … https://t.co/Sz6VBhT21T
- A final, to play you will refuse
It was to be expected (bis). After the fiasco of the postponement of the final return of Copa Libertadores between Argentine rivals Boca Juniors and River Plate, the case is far from over. While the match could not be played in the River Plate stadium, after a stalemate of the opposing bus, a decision was made in the week to relocate the meeting outside the Argentine borders. Several proposals have emerged from the United Arab Emirates to Paraguay via Genoa, but it is finally Madrid and Bernabeu that have been chosen to host the Superclasiso, a monument of South American football culture.
But, while the return match is to be played in Madrid on December 8, the two teams oppose the relocation. River Plate because the club considers that it must play at home, so that equality of opportunity is respected. Boca Juniors because he still hopes a disqualification of his opponent and a victory on green carpet.
The club has announced that it intends to continue its proceedings before the Appeal Board of the Conmebol (South American Football Confederation), or even before the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Meanwhile, tickets for this final that nobody wants to play have been on sale.
- European Champion, by the window you will pass
It was to be expected (ter). The qualifying windows for the 2019 basketball World Cup, installed in high season and thus depriving the selections of their major players in the NBA and Euroleague, have made their first verdict. And we now know that the reigning European Champion will not be competing in the next World Cup.
Deprived of its stars, the Slovenia team has been eliminated and will not be able to participate in the next major international competition. Worse, she will have to get an invitation to be able to play the Olympic qualifying tournament, possibly to participate in the Olympic Games of 2020.
The next World Cup will be contested without one of the most exciting European players of his last years, Slovenian Luka Doncic. Already decisive at just 18 years of age at the Euro, the Dallas player has been drawing even more light since joining the NBA.
The young prodigy may not be the only one to suffer the consequences of the new calendar of the International Federation (FIBA): among the world leaders, Spain, Croatia or Russia are not yet qualified for the competition.
Even the American team, made up for the NBA Development League players' qualifications, has lost some of its beauty. Undefeated since 2006, but deprived of all NBA players, Team USA has already dropped two games in the qualifying windows, against Mexico and Argentina.
The woman of the weekend: Kristina Vogel
Two-time Olympic track cycling champion, Kristina Vogel of Germany made her return to a velodrome in Berlin this weekend. In a wheelchair. Victim of a training accident in June, the champion, who broke her spine, is now paraplegic. Elected German cyclist of the year, she was long applauded by her peers on the sidelines of the Berlin round of the World Cup, and was able to afford a lap six months after his accident.
You STRONG. @KristinaVogel https://t.co/rTHv5Z2EnS
Sentenced to spend the rest of her life in an armchair, Kristina Vogel is still in the rehabilitation phase. " For the first time in my life, I have nothing to do. I want to take advantage of this situation. " she explained to Der Spiegel in September, when she announced her paraplegia.
Questioned by Team on the prospect of reconversion into Paralympic sport, the two-time Olympic champion in Rio did not close the door, but "To be successful in Paralympic sport I would need several years. Because I would not want to be second, I would like to win. Now I want to live, that's all. "
The number of the weekend: 4
As the number of selections that will compete in the Women's Football World Cup for the first time. This weekend, we know the 24 qualified teams, who will compete for the world title in France, from June 7 to July 7, 2019. Among them, Scotland, Jamaica, Chile and South Africa will discover the competition .
The Scottish women qualified by finishing first in their group, ahead of Switzerland who had played in the previous edition. Jamaica, Chile and South Africa, however, qualified thanks to their results in their respective continental cups.
The draw for the competition will take place on Saturday, December 8, without the Danes, yet finalist of the Euro in 2017, nor Austria, semi-finalist of the same competition.
Wikis of the weekend
Premier scorer in the Premier League, I scored twice for my team in the derby this weekend.
Back in Ligue 1 after a few years abroad, I opened my goal counter with my new club.