Sport Andres Iniesta trains with the Spain squad

The playmaker came through the ranks at Barcelona while van Gaal was manager at the Camp Nou and reserved praise of the highest order for the Dutch coach

Barcelona fans hold a placard with a message of support for Eric Abidal, during their La Liga match against Getafe at the Camp Nou

Barcelona defender Eric Abidal recovering well after liver transplant

Barcelona defender Eric Abidal is recovering well after undergoing a liver transplant yesterday, club president Sandro Rosell has said.

Lionel Messi leaves the Milan captain Massimo Ambrosini trailing

Lionel Messi set new record as AC Milan pay the penalties in Barcelona

Barcelona 3 Milan 1 (Barca win 3-1 on aggregate)

Lionel Messi has scored 12 goals in European games this season

Messi hits five while tiny Apoel go through

Lionel Messi at his breathtaking best tore Bayer Leverkusen apart with a record five-goal Champions League haul last night as Barcelona swept into the quarter-finals 7-1 on the night and 10-2 on aggregate.

Barcelona have set up a final against Santos

Barcelona overpower Al-Sadd to reach Club World Cup final

Al-Sadd 0 Barcelona 4

Bert Van Marwijk, the Netherlands coach

Van Marwijk extends Netherlands contract

Coach Bert van Marwijk has extended his contract with the Netherlands until 2016.

Fabregas: I'd 'stagnated' at Arsenal so had to leave

Cesc Fabregas knows he has a fight on his hands for first-team opportunities at Barcelona but insists he had to leave Arsenal because he had "stagnated".

Cesc Fabregas says he 'stagnated' at Arsenal

Cesc Fabregas knows he has a fight on his hands for first-team opportunities at Barcelona but insists he had to leave Arsenal because he had "stagnated".

Messi double devastates 10-man Real as Fabregas picks up trophy on debut

Lionel Messi carried on where he left off last season, scoring twice as Barcelona beat Real Madrid 3-2 at the Nou Camp to win the Spanish Super Cup 5-4 on aggregate last night. Cesc Fabregas, Barça's new signing from Arsenal, came on for his debut late in the second half.

James Lawton: A letter to Cesc... Farewell amigo, you can walk away with your head held high

You enlivened our stage with a whole range of possibilities: the quickness of your wit, the speed on the ball and effortless control

Fabregas prepared to play second fiddle to Barça's maestros

Former Arsenal captain handed coveted No 4 shirt but will struggle to oust one of feted midfield trio

Scholes: United's new generation can be the best since class of '92

Paul Scholes has suggested that last season's Manchester United Youth Cup winning side looks the most promising since the fabled group of the early 1990s and can deliver three players to the first team within a year, with Ravel Morrison the lead contender for the leap which so many 18-year-olds fail to make.

'He's full of fire and dignity': Why Chelsea are so keen to get Hiddink

The charismatic Dutchman's successful spell at the club in 2009 convinced Abramovich that he is the man who can finally bring European glory to SW6

What is driving Guus's desire to return to the Bridge?

Guus Hiddink is a 64-year-old who loves playing golf and riding his Harley Davidson. He cherishes his private life and has enough money to retire on, several times over. So what would make him want to take one of the most stressful, and demanding, jobs in football?

James Lawton: Perhaps Graham Taylor was right – this really is mission impossible

England have pretty much reached breaking point. This is the latest excruciating evidence that their international decline may not have hit rock bottom

Magical Messi casts his spell on United

Barcelona 3 Manchester United 1: Argentinian fires killer goal before Villa brings the house down for Barca
News
people

Arts and Entertainment
JJ Abrams' seventh Star Wars, The Force Awakens
filmsThe first glimpse of Episode VII has gone online after weeks of anticipation
News
Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
people
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
art

Presents unwrapped, turkey gobbled... it's time to relax

News
The Black Friday Vines that will destroy your faith in humanity
i100

Arts and Entertainment
The cast of Downton Abbey in the 2014 Christmas special
TV
News
The Magna Carta
archaeologyContemporary account of historic signing discovered
News
Robbie Rogers: US former Leeds United footballer, 25, announced he was gay in February 2013, shortly after he left Elland Road. Rogers 'retired' after writing on his blog: 'I'm a soccer player, I'm Christian, and I'm gay.' Has since signed with Los Angeles Galaxy.
people
Arts and Entertainment
Johnny Depp no longer cares if people criticise his movie flops
films
Arts and Entertainment
All in a day's work: the players in the forthcoming 'Posh People: Inside Tatler'
TVGrace Dent thinks we should learn to 'hug a Hooray Henry', because poshness is an accident of birth
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Lake Garda
Lake Como
Bruges
Paris
Prices correct as of 28 November 2014
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game