Sport Steven Gerrard on England duty in a friendly against Germany in November 2013

Gerrard could call time on his England career but new deeper midfield role might convince him otherwise

Ben Stokes and Mitchell Johnson confront each other on day four of the second Ashes Test

Ashes 2013-14: England and Australia all-rounders Ben Stokes and Mitchell Johnson cleared of misconduct after day four clash

The pair came face-to-face after colliding when the former ran for a single, hitting bowler Johnson as he ran up the pitch

Roy wonder: Hodgson considers the worst-case scenario draw of Manaus

World Cup 2014: Roy Hodgson happy with England-Italy time switch

The match will now start at 11pm BST, rather than 2am

Roy wonder: Hodgson considers the worst-case scenario draw of Manaus

World Cup 2014: England promised hostile reception after Roy Hodgson gaffe

The mayor of Manaus, Artur Virgilio, has suggested that the hot reception awaiting England in the city may not be restricted to the sweltering local temperatures. "We are going to make England welcome in Manaus. But that won't stop us cheering for Italy. There are a lot of Italian fans in Brazil. Our connection with Italy goes way back," he said in reference to the large number of descendants of Italian immigrants.

England batsman Ian Bell has said the team have

Ashes 2013-14: Ian Bell tells England they have 'no excuses' after embarrassing batting collapse in Second Test

Australia hold a mammoth 530-run lead over England with two days still to play

Hockey: England women beat Euro champions Germany

England's women have gone through to the quarter-finals of the World League Final in Argentina in second place in their group behind the Netherlands after beating European champions Germany 3-1.

Hockey: England hit by two late goals in agonising defeat

England conceded two late goals to slip to a 3-2 defeat to the Netherlands in their Argentina Hockey World League Pool A match.

The Outsider, By Jonathan Wilson - Paperback review

The “Outsider” here refers to literature’s most famous goalie Albert Camus, and that is characteristic of the tone of this erudite study of the role of the goalkeeper in football; Wilson also references Nabokov, Julian Barnes and Peter Handke.

Australia bowler Peter Siddle has warned England that the sledging onslaught will not stop anytime soon

Ashes 2013-14: The sledging onslaught will continue throughout the series, warns Australia bowler Peter Siddle

The verbal abuse between the two sides has dominated the fallout from the first Test after Australian captain Michael Clarke was fined for comments made to James Anderson

Ian Bell is the obvious candidate

Ashes 2013-14: Ian Bell likeliest No 3 as England ring the changes following the departure of Jonathan Trott

The best player from the last series likely to be bumped up

Australia captain Michael Clarke exchanges words with England's James Anderson

Ashes 2013-14: Australia captain Michael Clarke fined for 'using language or a gesture that is obscene, offensive or insulting' towards England bowler James Anderson

The ICC have hit Clarke with a 20% fine of his match fee after his comments in the closing stages of the first Test in Brisbane

Kiwi polish: Shaun Johnson goes over in the last minute to score the winning try for New Zealand

England 18 New Zealand 20 match report: England’s final chance sunk by last kick of game

Shaun Johnson converts his own last-minute try to deny hosts a World Cup semi-final win

New Zealand-born Rangi Chase has been dropped by England for the semi-final against the Kiwis

Rugby League World Cup: Steve McNamara abandons Rangi Chase after quarter-final lapses

England's coach, Steve McNamara, has bitten the bullet and dropped Rangi Chase for the World Cup semi-final against New Zealand on Saturday.

Mark Waugh celebrates reaching his century in the Ashes Test against England in Sydney in 1999

Ashes 2013-14: Mark Waugh predicts England's batting decline will mean hard-fought series

There is the inescapable feeling that this Ashes will go to the wire. Perhaps it is born partly of Australia's wishful thinking after three straight series defeats; perhaps a one-sided rubber would be bad for the brand, for that is what the old urn has become.

John Terry will not be seen in an England shirt again

World Cup 2014: Roy Hodgson firmly rejects notion of John Terry returning for England

Danny Mills suggested the former captain should come back into the fold

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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?

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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

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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
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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?

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Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
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Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

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