Sport Sunderland manager Gus Poyet, pictured here at an earlier match, refused to comment on the decision

The Black Cats lead 2-1 after the first leg of their Capital One Cup semi-final

Kyle Walker celebrates with his Tottenham Hotspur teammates

Match Report: Furious Gareth Bale of Tottenham Hotspur makes stand against diving 'persecution’

Sunderland 1 Tottenham Hotspur 2: Tottenham secure hard-fought victory but will miss Welsh winger for one game after booking

Threadbare Sunderland squad is O'Neill's undoing

There is something quite unsettling about the habit of those players Sir Alex Ferguson sells to bear gifts when they return to Old Trafford. Manchester United's rivals always scent a conspiracy and you can see why.

Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill

Martin O'Neill hopes experience will steer Sunderland away fromdrop zone

Black Cats have struggled this term

Stand by me: Martin O’Neill’s Sunderland have just one win in the past 17 games. He says improvement ‘will be slow’

Martin O'Neill remains confident despite Sunderland struggles

Ulsterman nearing a year in charge at the Stadium of Light

Sunderland captain Lee Cattermole

Sunderland wait on news of Lee Cattermole scan

Premier League team news

Martin O’Neill has condemned chanting by his own club’s supporters towards Steven Taylor

Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill wary of Harry Redknapp effect ahead of QPR visit

QPR travel to Stadium of Light with new manager in charge

Sunderland captain Lee Cattermole

John O'Shea and Lee Cattermole doubts for Sunderland ahead of QPR match

Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill is waiting for news of key duo John O'Shea and Lee Cattermole ahead of tomorrow night's Barclays Premier League clash with QPR.

Match Report: West Brom march on to new heights as Martin O’Neill fails again

Sunderland 2 West Bromwich Albion 4: Steve Clarke's side prove far too powerful for Sunderland and seal a fourth win in succession

Marco Tardelli hails 'fantastic year' for Republic of Ireland

Marco Tardelli will reflect upon a “fantastic year” as the Republic of Ireland bring their 2012 campaign to a close against Greece on Wednesday evening.

Sunderland's Adam Johnson celebrates after scoring
Newcastle player Yohan Cabaye celebrates the first goal

Newcastle midfielder Yohan Cabaye revels in derby goal against Sunderland

Yohan Cabaye rates his first derby goal as his most important to date for Newcastle.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew (l) shakes hands with Sunderland boss Martin O' Neill

Alan Pardew urges Newcastle to use Sunderland draw to kickstart season

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew urged his players to use their spirited derby display at Sunderland as a platform to belatedly kickstart their season.

Aiden McGeady battles for the ball with Simun Samuelsen

Trapattoni under pressure after Germany 'humiliation'

Republic of Ireland 1 Germany 6

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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