Sport The Maracana can be seen behind the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue that overlooks Rio de Janeiro
Now the football is over, Ian Herbert pays tribute to the hosts for the warmth of their welcome to the world, their unexpected success in staging the tournament, and senses a new national belief that can begin to tackle the numerous social problems that blight the country
A selection of the best players at the World Cup
GALLERY From Messi and Muller, who has impressed us enough to make the top 50 players of this year's World Cup? And there's even room for an England player...
VIDEO As football fans across the world come to terms with the end of arguably one of the greatest World Cups ever, a German pen maker created its own souvenir to remember Brazil 2014
Mario Gotze kisses the World Cup, Angela Merkel poses with Lukas Podolski, and Lionel Messi walks off the stage after Argentina's defeat
VIDEO Watch the moment Mario Gotze wrote his name into the history books
Latest international football video

Wayne Rooney gives the orders during England's 1-0 win over Norway

England vs Norway: Phil Jones delighted with win despite poor team showing and believes Wayne Rooney will be a 'great captain'

Manchester United defender believes victory was crucial after World Cup woe

England vs Norway analysis: Five things we learnt, including Wayne Rooney trying too hard and Jack Wilshere brightness

A look at what we discovered from 1-0 win at Wembley

Roy Hodgson speaks to his players during a water break

England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson claims his side's performance was 'quite good' - despite registering just two shots on target

Manager says his team is ready to make life difficult for Switzerland in the European Championships qualifier on Monday

Jack Wilshere tumbles in the box during England's 1-0 win over Norway

England vs Norway comment: Another false dawn as young guns fail to fire England

England are left still trying to escape the shadow of the World Cup

Argentina celebrate during their win over Germany
Wayne Rooney at Wembley

England vs Norway player ratings: Was Raheem Sterling or Wayne Rooney the best player on the pitch?

A look at the individual performances at Wembley

Raheem Sterling in action at Wembley
England fans cheer during the International friendly match between England and Norway at Wembley Stadium

England vs Norway: Wembley Stadium attracts a record low attendance

The Three Lions did manage to just break the 40,000 barrier

Vicente Del Bosque

Vicente Del Bosque must find a way to take Spain forward - but he faces some hard choices over how to replace the old guard

All-conquering Spain were swept aside in Brazil and now must decide at what pace they bring in their young players

A view of Wembley Stadium prior to England vs Norway

England vs Norway team news: Danny Welbeck named on bench for Wembley friendly

Roy Hodgson named his side for tonight's friendly yesterday

Roy Hodgson, left, urged his young side to seize the chance to prove themselves as internationals

England vs Norway: international friendly match preview

A look ahead to this evening's international friendly at Wembley

Jan Vertonghen

Jan Vertonghen knocks girl unconscious after a stray pass while training for Belgium

The young girl needed medical attention


England vs Norway: Five reasons you SHOULD watch the international friendly

Well, it was meant to be five...

45,000 fans turned out for open training and a glimpse of the World Cup trophy, held by Germany coach Joachim Löw, ahead of his side’s sell-out friendly match against Argentina – a repeat of the final in Brazil this summer

Germany v Argentina: World Cup winners struggling to come back down to earth

Joachim Löw reveals Bastian Schweinsteiger will replace the retired Philipp Lahm as captain ahead of rematch with beaten finalists

Norway defender Vegard Forren has fired an early volley before tonight’s friendly

England v Norway: Not even a jibe at ‘chubby’ Wayne Rooney will bring this Norwegian team recognition

When Wayne Rooney was asked what he made of the Norway defender Vegard Forren calling him “chubby”, he smiled and said he was “not too interested”.

Radamel Falcao was forced to withdraw from the World Cup after undergoing surgery
premier leagueExclusive: Reds have agreement with Monaco
Craig Cathcart celebrates scoring for Watford
Watford 1 Bournemouth 1: Defender strikes late to salvage a point as Martinez confirms Garcia is on the mend
Fighting Kit Fulham caretaker manager Kit Symons urges his players
Fulham 0 Blackburn 1: Cottagers desperately searching for first win
Kenny Jackett
Wolves 1 Bolton 0: Wolves continue renaissance at pace
A view of Hampden Park
Euro 2020: The semi-finals and final will be held at Wembley
FA chairman Greg Dyke
COMMENTJust when the state-of-the-art, behind-the-times Fifa Watch(™) was to be unveiled
Staff at Manchester Dogs' Home are convinced that Liverpool striker made an anonymous five-figure donation after tragic fire
A section of Partizan fans display an anti-semitic banner during the club's Europa League match between Partizan and Tottenham Hotspur
Partizan Belgrade 0 Tottenham 0: Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino described the banner as 'unacceptable' and Partizan have already apologised for it
Rio Ferdinand, Jamie Carragher
Former England team-mates have aimed digs at each others accents, but does anyone know what they're on about?
Tottenham defender also fined £50,000 for his support of the Frenchman after his controversial 'Quenelle' gesture
Clint Dempsey
VIDEO USA captain helps launch league's new logo and FIFA 15
Gutierrez and Sagna battle for the ball
The Newcastle defender revealed this week that he has undergone treatment for testicular cancer
Joel jumps over the board...and into a giant hole
VIDEO...and falls into a giant hole

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How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
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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
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Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
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Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
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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
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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