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

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific