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WEEK AHEAD: To make sure you stay on top of the sporting schedule, we’ve launched the Week Ahead blog to help keep you up to date.


There’s a great week of top sporting action around the globe this week.

And it all kicks off on Monday with Arsenal at home to Newcastle in the Premier League. The Gunners beat the Magpies in the FA Cup last week but needed extra time to do it. Will they keep their good league form going? Newcastle come into the game on the back of a dreadful loss at bottom club Sheffield United and under-fire boss Steve Bruce desperately needs a result at the Emirates. Kick-off is at 8pm.

On Tuesday, there’s live Premier League action on BT Sport at 6pm when in-form West Ham host struggling West Brom. The Hammers are up to eighth in the Premier League after beating Burnley in their last game, but the Baggies also go into this on a high after big win over Wolves in the Black Country Derby.

BT Sport kicks off the action on Wednesday with a mid-afternoon UFC card, as ranked Welterweight contenders Michael Chiesa and Neil Magny headline the card. Later in the day, Manchester City will be hoping to continue their title charge as they face Aston Villa at 6pm, before table toppers Utd visit relegation threatened Fulham on Sky Sports later on in the evening.

Thursday sees the start of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship as reigning European No.1 Lee Westwood makes his first start of the season. Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas are also in action.

We’ll also enjoy Southampton taking on Shrewsbury Town in their rescheduled FA Cup third round tie, before the Premier League action continues in the evening as last year’s title winners Liverpool take on a troubled Burnley side at 8pm on Sky Sports.

On Friday, Dimuth Karunaratne’s Sri Lanka play host to England once again as the 2nd Test gets underway, with coverage starting at 4.30am on Sky Sports. England took the first Test in convincing fashion, but can the hosts respond?

Meanwhile, the FA Cup action bumps up a notch as non-league Chorley – who knocked out Championship side Derby in the third round – look for another big-name scalp against Wolves.

The FA Cup action keep rolling on Saturday as Bournemouth host Crawley in a South coast rivalry, while Fulham face Burnley. Finally, Newcastle take on Aston Villa in the Premier League at 8pm on Sky Sports.

Early morning on Sunday sees one of the biggest events of the year so far, as UFC 257 takes centre stage on Fight Island, with the prelims set to start at 1am on BT Sport. The headline act, of course, is the return of former two-time division champ, Conor McGregor.  He faces old rival Dustin Porier with a potential Lightweight title fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov on the line, if all goes to Dana White’s plan. The main event gets underway at 3am.

There’s more FA Cup fourth round action on Sunday, as Championship side Brentford host 2015 Premier League winners Leicester City at 2pm on BT Sport. That’s followed by Sheffield United’s visit to Everton at 7.30pm.

Not a bad week’s worth of sport is it?!