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Horse racing to resume in the North East and North Yorkshire

Credit: PA (stock shot)

The British Horseracing Authority has announced what they are calling a risk-managed return to racing.

Racing has been cancelled across the UK for 6 days due to an outbreak of equine flu.

It means racing WILL take place from Wednesday this week, but only with strict biosecurity controls in place.

It had meant racing at Newcastle last Friday and on Monday at Catterick were cancelled, but all meetings as of Wednesday will now go ahead.

“From the testing and analysis conducted the disease appears to be contained at present. The BHA veterinary committee believe that the swift controls on movement that were put in place have clearly helped to restrict the spread of this virus.

“Clearly, there is some risk associated with returning to racing. This risk has been assessed and, based on the evidence – and ensuring biosecurity measures are in place – the level of risk is viewed as acceptable.”

– Brant Dunshea, BHA

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Sunderland star joins French side Bordeaux in permanent transfer

Credit: Mark Kerton/EMPICS Sport

Sunderland striker Josh Maja has left the club to join French side Bordeaux.

The 20-year-old academy graduate joins the French Ligue 1 side in a permanent deal.

Both clubs announced the transfer via their social media channels on Saturday morning.

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In a statement, Sunderland AFC said:

Josh Maja has completed a move to Bordeaux.

The 20-year old Sunderland AFC academy graduate has joined the French Ligue 1 side on a permanent basis.

– Sunderland AFC club statement

Maja is the Black Cats' top scorer so far this season.

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Full festive fixture list for North East teams on Boxing Day

Credit: Mike Egerton/EMPICS Sport

North East football teams return to action tomorrow with a full set of Boxing Day fixtures.

All of ITV News Tyne Tees' teams are set to play - from Newcastle in the Premier League down to Hartlepool, Gateshead and Harrogate in the National Legaue.

So who are they all up against?

  • NEWCASTLE UNITED (Away: Liverpool)

The Magpies travel to Liverpool on the back of a poor 0-0 home draw against bottom side Fulham.

For Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez it is a return to face his former club. The highlight of his time in charge at Anfield was winning the Champions League.

How times have changed for Benitez. He is now trying to avoid relegation with Newcastle, while former side Liverpool are four points clear at the top of the Premier League.

Many would see this fixture as a guaranteed home win for Liverpool, but Newcastle's away form this season means that you wouldn't discount the Magpies leaving Anfield with a point.

  • MIDDLESBROUGH (Home: Sheffield Wednesday)
Credit: Anthony Devlin/EMPICS Sport

After winning away at Reading, Middlesbrough will be hoping to pick up another win against Sheffield Wednesday tomorrow.

Boro currently sit 8 points off Norwich who are second in the Championship.

Middlesbrough could be without defender Ryan Shotton after he picked up a knee injury in the victory at Reading.

Winger Stewart Downing was rested for the trip to Berkshire and could return, with Tony Pulis suggesting the wingers' experience will be crucial in the home games ahead.

Sheffield Wednesday are managerless, with rumours former Sunderland boss Steve Bruce is close to being appointed.

  • SUNDERLAND (Home: Bradford City)

After losing only their second game so far this season last time out against Portsmouth, the Black Cats welcome Bradford City to the Stadium of Light tomorrow.

A record crowd in League One is expected, with manager Jack Ross keen not to disappoint the Sunderland fans who are coming to the match.

A win for the Black Cats could lift them to within a point of second place in League One and with games to come against Shrewsbury at home and Blackpool away in the days ahead, Sunderland boss Jack Ross will hope his side can get back on another unbeaten run.

  • NATIONAL LEAGUE FIXTURES

In the national league, there is a local derby for fans to enjoy on boxing day.

Gateshead welcome Hartlepool United to the International Stadium, with both sides in need of three points. For Gateshead, a win would help cement their place in the playoff spots, while three points for Hartlepool would help pools climb further up the league.

Elsewhere and Harrogate face Halifax at home.

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