Rory Smith

Rory Smith is a football writer for The Independent.

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Harry Redknapp: 'They can have a Christmas party when they have a six week holiday in the summer'

Humbug Harry stands firm on Christmas ban

Spurs manager says golf trips, days at the races and festive nights out are old-fashioned and of little interest to most of his players

Massimilano Allegri won Milan the title last season, his first in charge

The glory that was Serie A may have faded - but beware

Italy's giants may fail this time, but they are getting a new act together, says Rory Smith

Luiz Suarez celebrates scoring against QPR on Saturday but faces an FA disciplinary commission today

Suarez to give testimony at Evra 'racism' hearing today

Luis Suarez is expected to appear today in front of the Football Association's disciplinary commission to offer his account of the clash with Manchester United's Patrice Evra at Anfield in October which led to the Liverpool striker being charged with issuing racist abuse at the Frenchman.

Chelsea are likely to want to sell Fernando Torres in the summer

Torres not being sold – until summer...

Fernando Torres will not leave Chelsea in the January transfer window but for the first time doubts over the long-term Stamford Bridge future of the most expensive player in British football history have emerged.

Brede Hangeland (left) and Aaron Hughes can hardly believe Fulham’s elimination

'Big blow' for Jol as Fulham Fall at last

Fulham 2 Odense BK 2

Lukas Podolski, FC Cologne: The German international is enjoying the most consistent campaign of his occasionally turbulent career and, at 26, still qualifies as a long-term signing. He returned to Cologne from Bayern Munich in 2009, but after seeing promises to build a competitive side around him fail to come to fruition, may be tempted away before his contract expires in 2013

So, who needs what come the winter sales?

Injuries and illness will force the six sides in the hunt for Champions League places to go shopping in January

Luiz Suarez celebrates scoring against QPR on Saturday but faces an FA disciplinary commission today

Suarez to give testimony at Evra 'racism' hearing today

Luis Suarez is expected to appear today in front of the Football Association's disciplinary commission to offer his account of the clash with Manchester United's Patrice Evra at Anfield in October which led to the Liverpool striker being charged with issuing racist abuse at the Frenchman.

Fernando Torres has scored just three goals since joining last January

Torres will not be sold – until the summer...

£50m misfit has until the end of the season to improve his game or Chelsea will offload him

Asamoah Gyan earns £125,000-a-week at Al Ain in the UAE

Pioneers head east in game's latest gold rush

From Siberia and the Middle East to China, Rory Smith follows the trail of new money

Juan Mata says the Chelsea squad are united behind their manager

We are a big happy family, insists Mata

Andre Villas-Boas has created a "family" atmosphere at Chelsea, according to Juan Mata, settling one of the Premier League's most fractious dressing rooms and helping every player at a club notoriously riven by factions feel as though they are involved.

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Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam