Sport Didier Deschamps' France side face a tricky first leg in Ukraine

The clash of giant egos is in Lisbon, the romance in Reykjavik, and the only previous winner under threat plays in Kiev, but perhaps the most intriguing European World Cup play-off begins on Friday night in Athens.

Leading article: The star-mangled banner

They are calling it a "lyric malfunction", echoing the "wardrobe malfunction" at a previous Super Bowl when Janet Jackson "accidentally" revealed a naked breast during a dance routine with Justin Timberlake.

For Coloured Girls (15)

Starring: Kimberly Elise, Janet Jackson

Why Did I Get Married Too? (12A)

Tyler Perry's comedy-drama about a group of black middle-class American friends on vacation in a fancy Bahamas retreat splits right down the middle, the first half comedy, the second half drama.

Guy Adams: America's 'swear ban' is scrapped. What a ******* shame!

There is sadness for people who, like me, have in recent years enjoyed the occasional spectacle of America getting its collective knickers in a twist over, say, Bono saying a vaguely rude word at an awards ceremony, or Janet Jackson displaying half a bejewelled nipple (left) for a fraction of a second on live TV .

Why are there still no answers, ask Jacko's fans

The King of Pop's father files a lawsuit against his son's doctor as a broken family and followers mark the anniversary of Jackson's death

Did The Runaways start pop's sexual revolution?

Cherie Currie's knickers changed the course of popular music history. When, in 1976, she appeared on stage in a basque, fishnet stockings and her pants, which might have been the standard attire if you're handing out cocktails at a Brewer Street clip joint but not so much if you were a 16-year-old girl straight out of a high school in Encino, she prematurely and unknowingly fired the starting gun in a sexual arms race which has dominated pop ever since.

David Usborne: Policy is the victim in Washington's bloodsport

For anyone who watches American politics as if it were a competitive sport, the healthcare summit at Blair House was the Winter Olympics and the Super Bowl rolled into one. It was live on TV, there was a half-time break (though no Janet Jackson or The Who to keep us amused), and more than a few collisions and crashes.

Basso and Brooke show signature prints

Basso and Brooke showed their signature tight, digital print dresses today as London Fashion Week neared its climax, with the highly anticipated Burberry collection set to be unveiled.

Shirley Dent: The pernicious malady jeopardizing all hope of poetic justice

Doctor of medicine I am not. But I still feel qualified – nay, obliged – to warn you, gentle reader, that we appear to be in the grip of a pernicious malady sweeping the country from north to south. Yet without medical classification, but real in its effects, let us call this pandemic by the name poet-oxemia.

Dress Code: Lisa Maffia, Rapper

What are you wearing right now?

A T-shirt with a smiley face on it. And some shorts. I'm at home, chilling out and waiting for Ugly Betty to come on the telly. Wednesday TV is so boring but I really love Ugly Betty!

Janet Jackson blames doctor for Michael Jackson's death

Janet Jackson blames Dr. Conrad Murray for her brother Michael's death.

Observations: How cinema's inside man manages to do the right thing

Spike Lee was on typically rambunctious form at The Independent Interview on Monday at London's BFI. In a wide-ranging discussion, guided gently and not always successfully by David Lammy, MP, the director covered everything from the release of Do the Right Thing 20 years ago and the racism of critics, to how Barack Obama is coping with a post-election onslaught from "redneck crackers" ("The euphoria of him winning has gone. He's under attack"), and the changing face of cinema, where funding is scarce. "Unless you're Spielberg, Lucas or Tyler Perry, it's hard to get a film made." Nevertheless, the single-minded director (he demands final cut on all of his movies) revealed that he had turned down big-budget directing jobs in the aftermath of his most successful film, Inside Man. "Every available bank-heist movie that had been lying around was dusted off and sent to me".

Leading article: Hoist by her own petard

No one has suggested that Baroness Scotland knew she had taken on an illegal immigrant as her housekeeper. All the available evidence is that she acted in good faith. The fine of £5,000 – half the maximum for the offence – looks quite steep for, as Lady Scotland insisted yesterday, failing to photocopy a document. It is an expensive lesson; something she is unlikely to repeat.

Janet joins stars honouring her brother

A tearful Janet Jackson made her first public appearance since her brother's death today as she joined a host of stars honouring the King of Pop.

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Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

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Bread from heaven

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Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

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Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

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Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

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