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The striker refused to play for Stoke after texting manager Mark Hughes

Superbrothers: Sword and Sourcery EP - now free on Apple's App Store

Apple's App Store celebrates 5th birthday with free downloads

Store has had more than 50bn downloads as of May this year, generating $10bn in revenue.

Tim Henman: What Andy Murray must do to triumph this week

The expert view: Six keys to victory
With Will Smith in 'I Am Legend'

I Am Legend sci-fi author Richard Matheson dies aged 87

The science fiction author who wrote watershed 1954 vampire novel I Am Legend and whose work inspired several major fantasy feature films has died aged 87.

Half-cocked: Liam Neeson in the preposterous 'Taken 2'

Liam Neeson eyes $20m deal to star in Taken 3

Liam Neeson is close to agreeing a $20 million deal to star in Taken 3, according to reports.

Erik Pieters

Stoke reveal interest in Netherlands international Erik Pieters

Chairman admits club are seeking a left-back

Album review: Burt Bacharach, Anyone Who Had A Heart (Universal)

This six-disc retrospective covers most of the bases from early standards such as “Magic Moments” and “Baby It's You” through to collaborations with Costello and Cullum, sensibly relying on definitive versions by the likes of Dionne and Dusty and Aretha, with just one disc given over to Bacharach's own performances of songs such as “Alfie” and “Trains And Boats And Planes”.

Video: Disney and Pixar releases

Watch the videos below to see trailers and clips from Disney and Pixar's latest films and some recent classics.

Video: DVD and Blu-Ray releases

See below to watch the trailers for this week's DVD and Blu-Ray releases

Sam Mendes at the premiere of Skyfall

Skyfall might not be the limit as Sam Mendes rumoured to direct next Bond after all

Sam Mendes said just months ago that he was putting 007 on ice to focus on theatre. But now it seems that the Skyfall director was just being coy, as Sony Pictures and MGM have reportedly started talks for him to return and direct Daniel Craig in the next instalment of the James Bond franchise.

Padgett Powell

Paperback review: You & I, By Padgett Powell

Godot misses another appointment

Actress Isla Fisher

Isla Fisher on making it in Hollywood (and how being married to Sacha Baron Cohen DIDN'T help)

'Women should not have to adopt masculine traits in order to succeed,' says Australian actress

Tony Pulis stares to the heavens before the kick-off of Southampton v Stoke

Tony Pulis urges Stoke fans to get behind successor

Rafael Benitez and Roberto Di Matteo are among the favourites to succeed the Welshman

BBC Radio Stoke presenter Paula White who was removed from her Friday show after slurring and appearing drunk

Radio Stoke presenter Paula White pulled off-air for slurring her words and 'sounding drunk'

BBC Radio Stoke presenter Paula White was taken off-air after slurring and appearing to be drunk.

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Independent Travel
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona from £629pp
Dubrovnik
Vietnam
Bruges
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 12 December 2014
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
10 best high-end laptops

10 best high-end laptops

From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum