Ryan Giggs did not develop into the towering world figure his talent suggested he might become

Kevin Garside: As good a player as he still is, Ryan Giggs could have been so much more

Ryan Giggs as national treasure is a hard bubble to prick. The eulogies rained down on Friday on the occasion of his 40th birthday. The celebration of such a landmark, uncommon for an active footballer, is no place for the dissenting voice. But what about the day after? Is this the time to reflect more critically on the career of a Manchester United great?

Claudio Nancufil

Claudio Nancufil: The 'new' Lionel Messi attracting interest from Barcelona and the Premier League at the age of eight

He looks like Lionel Messi, comes from the same country as the Argentine superstar and, at the age of eight, already has Barcelona’s interest piqued. At the risk of building up hype that few would be able to match, remember the name: Claudio Nancufil.

'SmartWig': Sony files patent for computerised hair piece

The patent filing describes how the device could be used to monitor users' health, give directions or just help out with a slide-show presentation

The Harmondsworth Immigration Detention centre where Isa Muazu is detained

'Close to death' hunger striker faces imminent deportation after court defeat

A man who is "close to death" after being on hunger strike in immigration detention for three months could be sent back to Nigeria on Wednesday after his case failed in the Court of Appeal.

Prototype of Anthony Gormley's manhole, which can be found at the junction of Maxted Road and Sandison Street in Peckham, south London, near the artist’s old studio

Antony Gormley's Peckham manhole cover

Alice Jones' Arts Diary: Ed Balls learns the piano, West End welcomes expenses scandal and Joanna Lumley meets will.i.am

Boxing: Carl Froch last man standing in a battle of brutal brilliance against George Groves

Controversy after referee stops Groves to end one of best bouts ever

Fulham 1 Swansea City 2 match report: Fulham in turmoil as Jonjo Shelvey pushes martin Jol closer to edge

Fulham’s new double-Dutch era, with the former Manchester United coach Rene Meulensteen having joined fellow countryman Martin Jol, is off to a bad start, raising the question of how long it will last. Boos and chants of “we want Jol out” were heard after this fifth successive defeat in all competitions, during which 15 goals have been shipped.

Sting in the tale: Wasps’ centre Elliot Daly is being tipped for a senior cap

Quickfire Elliot Daly can give England ‘a Ma’a Nonu moment'

Enjoyable as it has been to wallow in Jonny Wilkinson’s World Cup-winning dropped goal from 10 years ago, the seminal moment on the minds of current players and coaches in recent days was an offload by an All Black last weekend.

Paperback review: Time's Anvil, By Richard Morris

“One thing we bring to time,” writes archaeologist Richard Morris in this multi-levelled book about digging up the English past, “is a compulsion to split it up”.

Page 3 Profile: Tessa Jowell, politician

She’s a rather experienced politician.

Gifts for globetrotters

The best in festive travel

The novel cure: Stuck in a house chain

Literary prescriptions for modern ailments

A Pakistan International Airlines Airbus A310 pictured at Leeds Bradford Airport in 2011

Pilot jailed for turning up drunk to fly 156 people from UK to Pakistan

The 55-year-old was breath-tested at Leeds Bradford Airport in September

The winner of the 2013 'The World's Biggest Liar' competition Mike Naylor

Story of mythical marine creature takes top prize at Cumbria's World's Biggest Liar competition

Mike Naylor, aka Monkey Liar, defeats tall tales of 11 fibbers to claim £25 prize

Australia's Ryan Harris (left) celebrates taking the wicket of England's Alastair Cook

Ashes 2013-14: Geoffrey Boycott slams England for 'giving away the First Test'

The tourists were skittled for 136 on Day Two of the Test

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Panama
Languedoc Roussillon
Marrakesh & the Atlas Mountains
Bruges
The Jura Mountains
Dubrovnik & the Dalmatian Coast
Prices correct as of 17 September 2014
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments