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

'Unbelievable' Lampard wins Keane's admiration

Chelsea 5 Sunderland 0

Outside the Box: Turner prize is consolation for finishing runner-up to Sir Alex

Most football fans could name Sir Alex Ferguson as the longest-serving manager at a current English League club, but how many would know the second-longest?

England hit stride as Rooney sparks grandstand finish

England 5 Kazakhstan 1

Goals but no glory for England

England 5 Kazakhstan 1

United want Ferguson's help to find successor

Sir Alex Ferguson will be given the opportunity to anoint his successor as Manchester United manager after the club's chief executive, David Gill, confirmed that the club's owners, the Glazer family, plan to seek the opinion and advice of the 66-year-old when he finally announces his retirement at Old Trafford.

Pandora: For once, Drogba keeps his cool

For all Didier Drogba's questionable behaviour on the football pitch, the Chelsea striker is not quite the petulant brat we have been led to believe. A mole recently found himself sharing a cabin with Drogba on a British Airways flight bound for Los Angeles.

Supersub Sverkos sets ball rolling as Czechs spoil party for co-hosts

After all the excitement of the build-up to a major tournament – flags, bunting and surreal opening ceremony – comes the football; and that is where host countries tend to fall down. Only twice have they won the first game of a European Championship, and Switzerland, who held England at Wembley in the first Euro 96 match, could not improve the sequence. Despite outplaying the Czech Republic for long periods they found Chelsea's Petr Cech in typical form and when he was finally beaten late on in a lively encounter, the crossbar saved him.

Hughes in a hurry to lead City revolution

If, when he was first recruited to haul Blackburn Rovers away from the foot of the Premier League, you told Mark Hughes that four years later he would be unveiled at a training ground in Carrington as a manager with £50m to spend and Ronaldinho a possible recruit, he could have been forgiven for thinking that life after Manchester United was destined to come full circle. It hasn't, because as Hughes pointed out when Manchester City presented him as their fourth manager in a little over eight years yesterday, time waits for no man in football.

Grant may win title and still go

No method in Roman's madness and it is ludicrous that Chelsea's manager cannot share job security with United rival

Crystal Palace Burnley 0: Warnock takes 'Big Mo' to play-offs

In American politics, they call it "The Big Mo"; in the Championship, they prefer the understatement of the full word: momentum. The perception is that momentum has more of a bearing than mere final league position when it comes to achieving success in the play-offs.

Brian Viner: A knight to challenge Sir Alex in footballing derring-do

How, I wonder, might we estimate the total number of column inches devoted in the national press this week to the exploits of Manchester United and Chelsea in reaching the first notionally all-English European Cup final, and to the achievements of their respective managers, Sir Alex Ferguson and Avram Grant (a total which I confess to boosting myself elsewhere in today's paper)?

Fiorentina 0 Rangers 0 <i>(aet; Rangers win 4-2 on pens)</i>: Novo holds nerve to shoot 10-man Rangers into final

Nacho Novo and Neil Alexander were the heroes as 10-man Rangers booked a place in the Uefa Cup final following a gruelling semi-final tie against Fiorentina. Novo kept his cool to convert the decisive penalty after Alexander had saved from Fabio Liverani and Christian Vieri had missed in a tense penalty shoot-out.

St Johnstone 1 Rangers 1: Cousin keeps Rangers fighting on all fronts

No team with ambitions of a Quadruple can expect to sail smoothly through an entire campaign, and as surely as yesterday's warm spring afternoon in Glasgow turned icy in minutes, a metaphorical force-10 gale bore down on Rangers' multiple trophy hopes.

Grant: 'Every game where we drop points is a big game'

Avram Grant was more animated after Chelsea's thrilling draw at White Hart Lane last night than he had been during the chaotic contest, defending his record and reacting angrily to suggestions that he had, once again, failed to win one of the "big games" he needs to cement his role as Chelsea manager.

Close-up: Olga Sviblova

It's a 'dangerous time' for Russian art, says Moscow's cultural tsarina
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us