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

Luis Suarez

Luis Suarez: Uruguay include Suarez in squad to play Saudi Arabia and Oman, but Barcelona striker CAN feature in friendlies

Suaez is serving a 10-match international ban but is free to play in friendlies after his World Cup bite on Giorgio Chiellini

England’s manager, Roy Hodgson, could be storing up problems by bowing to Liverpool over squad selection

Danny Welbeck named as a Manchester United player in latest England squad

Former United striker bagged a hat-trick for Arsenal against Galatasaray

Nathaniel Clyne has been called up for England

England squad to face San Marino and Estonia: Nathaniel Clyne, Kieran Gibbs and Jonjo Shelvey included

Southampton's Clyne receives first call up to the squad

Chris Coleman says he wants 'to finish what he started' with Wales

Chris Coleman has given up on winning over Wales critics as he claims he's no longer 'bothered' by the doubters

Coleman admitted he's never been worried by what's said about him ahead of Wales's important European Championship qualifiers against Bosnia-Herzegovina and Cyprus

Daniel Sturridge out of England squad after Brendan Rodgers reaches agreement with Roy Hodgson

England face San Marino and Estonia next week

Diego Costa has no intention of skipping Spain duty despite Jose Mourinho concerns

Chelsea striker has ongoing hamstring problems

Daniel Sturridge at Anfield

Daniel Sturridge injury: Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says striker will miss England's Euro qualifiers this month

Striker suffered the injury on international duty last month

Daniel Sturridge would have gone to England’s camp with details of his routines

FC Basel vs Liverpool: Daniel Sturridge’s injury keeps him out of England qualifiers

Liverpool striker likely to miss next two England matches

Kwesi Appiah makes a gesture from the touchline in the match against Portugal

Former Ghana coach reveals players played against Portugal in the World Cup with $100,000 in their backpacks

Kwesi Appiah was called to give evidence into inquiry into woeful campaign

Fifa Executive Committee member Theo Zwanziger

Qatar World Cup 2022: Fifa Executive Committee member Theo Zwanziger claims World Cup 'will not take place in Qatar'

Zwanziger believes that the searing temperatures in Qatar will force the World Cup to be played elsewhere

Phil Jagielka in relaxed mood during training

Phil Jagielka: I may never win back England place, says Everton defender

The Everton defender was a part of the side humbled at the World Cup

A view of Hampden Park

Euro 2020: England might have to play games at Hampden Park

The semi-finals and final will be held at Wembley

Michel Platini announces Bucharest as one of the 13 host cities for the 2020 European Championship

Euro 2020: Travel guide - Where should you go if Wembley isn't for you?

From Amsterdam to Baku, we give you the best alternative cities to enjoy the 2020 European Championships

FA chairman Greg Dyke

Euro 2020: Wembley awarded final as FA chairman Greg Dyke admits: 'We are delighted - it's nice to win one!'

Dyke was joined by England manager Roy Hodgson in Geneva to see London awarded the final and semi-finals of the 2020 European Championships

CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty
A leading Fifa anti-racism campaigner last night warned that an African team may walk off the field at Russia’s 2018 World Cup if nothing is done about the country’s racism problem
Manchester City and Moscow players line up behind an anti-racism banner at the Khimki Stadium on Tuesday
COMMENTCSKA match against Manchester City was a shambles
Roy Keane reveals he head-butted Peter Schmeichel during a fight on Manchester United’s 1998 pre-season tour of Asia
Former midfielder has been criticising his former club again
Norwich striker Cameron Jerome in action against Leeds
Norwich striker makes accusation during Championship match against Leeds
Marouane Fellaini
Whoever said the Germans lacked a sense of humour?
Franck Ribery of Bayern Munich celebrates during the 7-1 win over Roma
REACTIONRequest comes despite 7-1 win over Roma
Sir Alex Ferguson and David Moyes
COMMENTUnited legend tramples on his successor who resisted criticising his inheritance at Manchester United
Swansea manager Garry Monk
COMMENTSam Wallace: Diving is a problem the game is unwilling to tackle – as he has shown in the past
LATESTThey watched their side get thrashed 8-0 by Southampton

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How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

Liverpool v Real Madrid

Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?