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
Sport
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...
Sport
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
Sport
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 World Cup video


Kevin Grosskreutz shows off his World Cup tattoo even though he didn't play a minute in Brazil

Germany midfielder Kevin Grosskreutz shows off his World Cup tattoo - even though he didn't play a minute in Brazil

The Germany squad member added the World Cup trophy to his existing tattoos but spent all seven matches for Germany sitting on the bench

Sepp Blatter reveals Russia as the hosts of the 2018 tournament

World Cup 2018: MPs join Nick Clegg call for Russia to be axed as hosts over shooting down of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17

Douglas Alexander, the shadow Foreign Secretary, urges world football’s authority, Fifa, to begin contingency planning

Sepp Blatter reveals Russia as the hosts of the 2018 tournament

World Cup 2018: Russia should be axed as hosts after Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, says Nick Clegg

Deputy Prime Minister calls on Russia to be stripped of the right to host the football tournament

Frank Lampard is presented as a New York City FC player

Frank Lampard joins New York City FC: MLS's newest recruit remains hush on whether he will call time on his England career

36-year-old Lampard has completed a transfer to the newest MLS club but is yet to announce whether he will remain available for his country

Bryan Robson said England are 'way off' winning a major tournament

England just don’t have the quality, says former captain Bryan Robson

And he also believes it will take time before any world-class players emerge from the ranks

Fifa President Sepp Blatter speaks with FA Chairman Greg Dyke last October

A World Cup in England? Not while Sepp Blatter is in power, says Greg Dyke

FA chairman calls for root-and-branch reform of Fifa, but also explained why that would be impossible

Dunga was relieved of his duties after arriving back in Brazil after the 2010 tournament

Brazil appoint Dunga to replace Luiz Felipe Scolari and begin rebuilding process

The 1994 World Cup winning captain coached the national team at the 2010 World Cup in which they reached the quarter-finals

Steven Gerrard has admitted he would be willing to help Roy Hodgson pick out the next England captain if he seeked his advice

Steven Gerrard retires: Former England skipper ready and willing to help Roy Hodgson pick his next captain if the Three Lions manager comes calling

Gerrard announced his retirement from international football after a 14 years career with England

Steven Gerrard celebrates his goal in the 5-1 win over Germany, one of his England highlights

Steven Gerrard retires: Captain calls time on England career of frustrated ambition

A player with Gerrard’s gifts could have expected more of England

1 September 2001: Gerrard scores his first England goal- the second in a historic 5-1 win over Germany in Munich. In an all-Liverpool affair, the other goals came from Emile Heskey and a Michael Owen hat-trick

Steven Gerrard retires: The Liverpool player's best games for England

A look back on his greatest games from among his 114 caps

Steven Gerrard speaks to the media alongside Roy Hodgson

Steven Gerrard retires: Who will be the next England captain?

Roy Hodgson must pick a replacement following Gerrard's announcement

Steven Gerrard announces retirement: England captain retires from international football after World Cup failure

Gerrard brings the curtain down on an international career that saw him amass 114 caps for the Three Lions

Robin van Persie's brilliant header has been transformed into a piece of street art in a Brazilian favela

Robin van Persie's diving header against Spain turned into street art in a Brazilian favela

Brilliant header has been painted onto the walls as a reminder

Vicente del Bosque was not willing to be bold enough when it came to dropping declining players

World Cup 2014: Pepe Reina admits his 'delight' after Vicente del Bosque announces he will remain in charge of Spain national team

The World Cup winner will stay on as Spain coach despite their dismal showing in Brazil that saw them eliminated in the group stages

Andre Schurrle enjoys a water jet-pack while on a post-World Cup holiday

Andre Schurrle proves he can 'walk on water' as he enjoys post-World Cup holiday

Chelsea midfielder takes to the sky on a water jet-pack as he enjoys holiday with his girlfriend

Sport
Ashley Cole with his new team-mates
PICTURE Hilarious image quickly spreads on social media
Sport
The future of the Hammers manager remains precarious despite the start of the new season coming into view
News
Lionel Messi looks on at the end of the final
Barcelona forward accused of defrauding Spanish Tax Office of more than £3.1m
Sport
Kevin Grosskreutz shows off his World Cup tattoo even though he didn't play a minute in Brazil
World Cup 2014: Which Germany player spent all seven matches for Germany sitting on the bench but still decided to get a commemorative tattoo?
Sport
PICTURE Koeman tweets picture from Southampton training ground - with not a single player in sight
Sport
Jesus Navas of Manchester City celebrates after scoring his team's third goal during the Capital One Cup Final between Manchester City and Sunderland at Wembley Stadium (Getty)
'You fed 5,000 people with five loaves and two fish, so why didn’t you give Yaya a cake?' - Premier League champions trolled relentlessly
Sport
David Moyes was replaced by Louis van Gaal as Manchester United manager
COMMENTKevin Garside: Moyes was always too deferential to United's history and tradition - Van Gaal is doing things differently
Sport
Mario Balotelli posed for this selfie during AC Milan's 5-1 defeat to Manchester City
Manchester City vs AC Milan: The mercurial striker was the centre of attention once again
Sport
Park life: Barça in training
Luis Enrique brings Xavi, Iniesta and Co to St George's Park for a five-day training camp at a sporting centre attracting the cream of the Continent

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