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


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

Philipp Lahm alights the plane with the World Cup

Philipp Lahm retires from international football: Germany captain steps down from national duty less than a week after winning the World Cup

Lahm, only 30, has retired from Germany, according to reports in Germany

Christoph Kramer went off on 31 minutes of the final after a collision with Ezequiel Garay

Disoriented Christoph Kramer had to ask ref: Is it the World Cup final?

German continued playing for 14 minutes after collision with Argentina defender Ezequiel Garay
Roy Hodgson arrives at Luton airport

World Cup 2014: England plummet down to 20th in Fifa rankings as World Cup winners Germany replace Spain at the top

Costa Rica, the United States and Bosnia-Herzegovina are all ranked above England, who are only seven places ahead of Scotland

Sport
Yossi Benayoun (left) and Joey Barton
One of the former QPR team-mates calls the other 'stupid'
Sport
TRANSFER TALK Brazil goalkeeper is widely expected to leave the club this summer
Sport
Frank Lampard is presented as a New York City FC player
TRANSFER TALK New York City FC midfielder hopes the past 13 years of good behaviour have helped forget his part in a drinking binge
Sport
Patrick Vieira is a youth coach at Manchester City
COMMENTJack Pitt-Brooke: The club's youth team coach took his players off the field after clashes during a pre-season friendly in Croatia
Sport
England players trudge off after their dismal exit from the World Cup
Labour claims a ‘moral obligation’ to abide by £50m spending requirement
Sport
GALLERY Incredibly, it might not actually be the worst football strip ever released
Sport
TRANSFER ANALYSIS The arrival of Rodriguez and Kroos at the Bernabeu could spark an exodus - so which ones could be heading to the Premier League?
Sport
ANALYSIS A look at the most expensive frontlines at Europe's giants
Sport
Jeremy Mathieu
TRANSFER TALK Doubts raised as to whether the signing from Valencia is good value for money
Sport
Bryan Robson said England are 'way off' winning a major tournament
And he also believes it will take time before any world-class players emerge
Sport
A view of Arsenal's Emirates Stadium
IN DEPTH Manchester City offer cheapest season tickets whilst Arsenal remain the most costly
Sport
Steven Gerrard speaks to the media alongside Roy Hodgson
ANALYSISA look at the contenders to replace Gerrard

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Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
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