Sport Juan Mata could go through a Manchester United initiation, but hopefully it won't be anything like David Beckham's

Beckham was forced to perform a sexual act on himself while looking at a picture of former United star Clayton Blackmore whereas in comparison Mata is likely to sing a song

New Year's resolutions: the apps and technology to help you keep fit in 2014

From free bodyweight exercises to bracelets that will keep track of your run...

Former West Brom's manager Steve Clarke

West Bromwich Albion sack manager Steve Clarke after fourth defeat in a row

Saturday's 1-0 defeat at Cardiff leaves Baggies in 16th

What, when, wear? An insider’s guide to pre-collections

The style calendar has gone crazy, as it seeks to exploit the bit between ‘seasons’. Fashion editor Alexander Fury offers help

Donald McCain will have high hopes that Across The Bay can last at Aintree in The Becher Chase

Sire de Grugy’s rapid progress can sire Tingle Creek win

The absence of Sprinter Sacre from today’s Tingle Creek at Sandown, though a disappointment to those impatient for another demonstration of his talent and superiority, does at least give the best of the rest in the two-mile chase division a rare chance of glory.

Deco during his Chelsea days

Former Chelsea playmaker Deco contests ban for failed drugs test

The former Portugal international has retired since the positive test

Southampton v Aston Villa: Christian Benteke backed to end goal drought by Paul Lambert

The striker has gone seven games without a goal

<b>5. Carluccios Beuno Festa</b> This is the first year Carluccio’s has produced an advent calendar and it was worth the wait. Besides the beautiful packaging, inspired by the colours of Bologna, each window reveals high-quality, foil wrapped chocolate in the shape of fruit, animal or something Christmassy. At 250g, there’s no skimping either. £10.95, www.carluccios.com

Rejoice, the Christmas chocolate calendar is upon us

People, I think it’s time we took a long hard look at this tradition, and ourselves

Invisible Ink: No 201 - John Moore

How can you become so famous that they name two schools, the wing of a hospital, a museum and a pub after you ... and then be totally forgotten? That’s the puzzle surrounding John Moore, novelist and countryman. He was born in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, seven years before the Great War, and he remained out of the limelight following rural pursuits all his life. However, he was one of the best known and loved writers about the countryside in the 20th century, and was widely published in America, Australia and New Zealand.

Books of the year 2013: Politics

There is no argument about what is the 2013 political book of the year. Charles Moore has lived since 1997 with the task of producing Margaret Thatcher's authorised, posthumous biography, Margaret Thatcher: The Authorised Biography (Allen Lane, £30). His first lovingly and painstakingly written volume was rushed into the bookshops within days of her death. It took three pages of close type just to list the people Moore interviewed. The narrative took another 750 to reach the conclusion of the Falklands War.

Bitcoin Black Friday: US online retailers attempt to stir up an online shopping frenzy

The digital currency has topped the $1000 exchange rate this week

Northampton argue they have contravened no rules by releasing George North to face Australia

Northampton face fine after releasing George North for Wales duty

He will play in Saturday’s Test match against Australia, which falls outside the international window

45,000 fans will wear Cristiano Ronaldo face masks when Real Madrid face Galatasaray tonight in a show of support for his Ballon d'Or campaign

Real Madrid v Galatasaray: 45,000 Real Madrid fans to wear Cristiano Ronaldo face masks in show of Fifa Ballon d'Or support

Two supporters groups have organised the stunt to support campaign for the forward to win this year's Ballon d'Or award

Rory McIlroy admitted his sympathy for Jonathan Trott and expressed his concern at the growing pressure that sport has on the mental state of participants

Rory McIlroy opens himself up to scrutiny after admitting dismay at growing pressures of sport after Jonathan Trott's Ashes exit

The Northern Irish golfer admits Trott's departure represents the growing ever-increasing toll that sport can have on the mental state of those who compete

UK is the ‘least attractive country in the world’ according to international dating website - for beautiful people only

Just one British person makes it onto 2014 calendar of ‘world’s most eligible singletons’

Brendan Rodgers is yet to manage a team to victory over Everton

Everton v Liverpool: Roberto Martinez warns rivals that wealth might not buy success

Spanish manager considers financial gulf between two sides to be 'huge'

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering