Sport Racing Santander speak to the referee after refusing to contest their Copa del Rey quarter-final due to unpaid wages

They lined up on the pitch against Real Sociedad, but then refused to contest the ball

Barcelona v Arsenal: Champions League preview

Arsenal head to Barcelona for the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final tonight.

Arsenal v Barcelona: Champions League preview

Arsenal take on favourites and holders Barcelona in the quarter-finals of the Champions League on Wednesday night.

Catalonia votes to ban bullfighting

Bloodthirsty 'sport' is dying a slow death across Spain, as younger audiences turn away

Catalans make first move on bullfight ban

The Catalan parliament took a step yesterday towards what would be the first ban on bullfighting in a region of Spain, calling for an end to the traditional spectacle by 67 to 59 in an initial vote.

Album: Il Divo, An Evening with Il Divo: Live in Barcelona (Syco)

The invention of "Operatic Pop" may be Simon Cowell's musical legacy. Togged up in Armani, the quartet Il Divo here run through their repertoire – pop ballads like "Nights In White Satin", "Without You" and "My Way" given Italian translations and belted out with orchestral accompaniment – in front of 20,000 fans in Barcelona.

Son of a bitch – you can't fire me

A court in Barcelona says insulting your boss with one particularly foul obscenity is not grounds for dismissal, insisting the slight is common in arguments in Spain and not that big a deal.

Travel Challenge: A Barcelona city break

Every week we invite competing companies to give us their best deal for a specified holiday. Today: a city break in Barcelona, departing for two nights on 11 September; prices are for two people travelling together from London.

Cathedral of the Sea, by Ildefonso Falcones, trans. Nick Caistor

Rich and racy homage to old Catalonia

12 for 2012: No 5: Hannah Miley, swimmer

Our monthly series presenting potential medal-winners at the London Games in six years' time turns to a Scottish pool prospect - and hears how a past hero prepared for greatest show on earth

Simon Calder: The Man Who Pays His Way

What a difference 22 years makes
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
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The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick