Sport Spain midfielder Juan Mata

Juan Mata follows in the footsteps of Cristiano Ronaldo, George Best and Eric Cantona

Spain midfielder Juan Mata
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?

Adnan Januzaj cost United £500,000 from Anderlecht

Expectations around Adnan Januzaj must be tempered warns former Manchester United player Gary Pallister

The 18-year-old has burst onto the scene this season

Wayne Rooney could be a Manchester United god according to former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher

The Sky pundit claims Rooney needs to sign a new contract and ensure his name is mentioned in the same breath as Sir Bobby Charlton, George Best, Ryan Giggs and Eric Cantona

Mike Summerbee played a starring role in City's victory

Manchester City v Manchester United: The day rivals swapped kits for cricket whites

Neighbours battled it out at the other Old Trafford – and even George Best had a go

Wayne Rooney celebrates scoring against Bayer Leverkusen

Wayne Rooney enters exclusive club as he nets his 200th goal for Manchester United to join Sir Bobby Charlton, Dennis Law and Jack Rowley

Rooney scored twice in the 4-2 victory over Bayer Leverkusen to make him just the fourth player to pass the double century mark

Adnan Januzaj cost United £500,000 from Anderlecht

Adnan Januzaj flair invokes the spirit of George Best at Manchester United - a welcome foil to Ashley Young's diving

Moyes gives the frail United youngster his league debut 50 years after legend’s first game

Paperback review: The Footballer Who Could Fly, By Duncan Hamilton

The footballer who could fly was Wyn Davies – the Newcastle United centre forward of the 1960s whose leaping powers bordered on levitation.

Stuart Hogg with the Lions mascot
Roy Hodgson said that Gascoigne needed to take 'drastic measures to try and get his life back into some sort of order'

Paul Gascoigne: 'Please don't let me die, I need to water the plants'

Former England star tells of 'horrific' health scare

A golf course is hit by the weather

Weather chaos hits sport: Northern Ireland v Russia postponed

The game will now take place tomorrow

Six Nations: Mighty Sergio Parisse the man who towers over Italy's failings

Captaining Italy is a job that demands an ability to man-manage an ever-evolving crisis. More often than not when Italy play, Italy lose and it was John Kirwan, the former All Black great and then Italy coach, who once neatly summed up the end-game for the captain as "invariably dealing with the crisis of defeat". It is a fire -fighting role in the Towering Inferno.

A Question of Sport 1,000 not out

A Question of Sport is 1,000 not out and celebrating the landmark episode with some very familiar guests.

Paul Gascoigne has suffered a long battle with alcoholism

Paul Gascoigne believes he can 'get back on track'

The former England international's agent revealed his client had begun drinking again

Paul Gascoigne has suffered a long battle with alcoholism

Concerns grow for Paul Gascoigne after he appears unwell and shaking during charity appearance

Concerns are growing for former footballer Paul Gascoigne after he appeared unwell and shaking during a charity appearance.

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
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