Sport Former Germany international footballer Thomas Hitzlsperger has come out as gay

Hitzlsperger revealed on Wednesday that he is gay and hopes that the widespread acceptance will help to progress the discussion of homosexual sportspeople forward

Chelsea warn star players over behaviour

Chief executive Ron Gourlay has read the riot act to Chelsea's misbehaving stars in a tough-talking showdown with the squad at the club's training ground this week.

Terry thrives at heart of the storm

Burnley 1 Chelsea 2

No first-team guarantees for Chelsea's Joe Cole

Coach Carlo Ancelotti insists Joe Cole will be a Chelsea player next season even though he cannot guarantee him regular first-team football.

Mancini keeps cool head but still promises United a special welcome

City's new manager set for derby without tension after his predecessor's departure

World Cup round-up: Nine-man Russia go crashing out

Slovenia v Russia

Referees' union attacks FA over Ferguson

Two-match touchline ban not enough to make example of United’s repeat offender

Alex signs new deal at Chelsea with World Cup dream in mind

The Brazilian defender Alex has set his sights on realising his World Cup dreams after becoming the second player in as many days to commit his long-term future to Chelsea.

Alex extends Chelsea contract

Brazilian defender Alex has set his sights on realising his World Cup dreams after becoming the second player in as many days to commit his long-term future to Chelsea.

Kenyon quits leaving Arnesen to rule at Chelsea

Club denies chief executive's departure is linked to Kakuta as rival wins power struggle

Clarets deserve to be on top table, says Alexander

We might, on that opening day of the season, have reached for an easy conclusion on Burnley, one that declared this team, that was so gallant, so true to itself in winning promotion to the Premier League last season, to be out of its depth. A 2-0 defeat at Stoke City allowed some prejudices to breathe, those that consider small clubs from small towns somehow unable to survive in this league. We might have allowed these thoughts to take hold, and we might, too, be regretting them now.

No substitute for class as Kalou and Alex rescue Chelsea

Pre-season friendly matches may be about building fitness, bedding in new players and trying out some new systems, but it never looks good to fans for any team to lose to supposedly inferior opposition.

Al-Fahim becomes Portsmouth chairman

Sulaiman Al Fahim has been appointed chairman of Portsmouth with immediate effect after the Premier League today gave his takeover bid the green light.

'NoW' hacker had beans to spill and a crust to earn

Peter Burden defends Glenn Mulcaire, the recluse at the centre of a media spat

Edinburgh Film Festival: Inside the Art house

Two films about the art world will be among the highlights of the Edinburgh Film Festival. The directors tell James Mottram why the time is right for their insider portraits of creative hotbeds
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that? The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year

Aren’t you glad you didn’t say that?

The worst wince-and-look-away quotes of the year
Hollande's vanity project is on a high-speed track to the middle of nowhere

Vanity project on a high-speed track to nowhere

France’s TGV network has become mired in controversy
Sports Quiz of the Year

Sports Quiz of the Year

So, how closely were you paying attention during 2014?
Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry, his love of 'Bargain Hunt', and life as a llama farmer

Alexander Armstrong on insulting Mary Berry and his love of 'Bargain Hunt'

From Armstrong and Miller to Pointless
Sanchez helps Gunners hold on after Giroud's moment of madness

Sanchez helps Gunners hold on

Olivier Giroud's moment of madness nearly costs them
A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect