Sport Everton midfielder Ross Barkley will be offered a new improved contract for his breakthrough into the first team this season

Barkley has broken into the first-team this season and has been tipped for inclusion in Roy Hodgson's World Cup squad after making his England debut in September

The boy done good. Now Wayne must keep his head while England goes Rooney loony

Cometh the hour, cometh the man-child. Every time the England football team plays in a major tournament one player becomes the obsession of the fans. This time Wayne Rooney, an 18-year-old from Everton, is the one bearing the hopes of the nation on his laddish shoulders.

James Lawton: Gascoigne flaws serve as warning to Rooney

There will be no more poignant - or alarming - headline in the build-up to Euro 2004 than the one that appeared above the name of Paul Gascoigne yesterday. "Why Rooney," it declared, "can be the new me." The impact of this statement was all the more terrifying because it touched on the darkest fears of anyone who has happened to notice the striking similarities between the two most precociously gifted English footballers of their generations.

Toothless Wolves rue missed chances

Wolverhampton Wanderers 1 Newcastle United 1

Fears for Rooney cast a shadow over Everton win

Rangers 2 Everton 3

Defoe gives Roeder time

Blackburn Rovers 2 West Ham United 2

Gillingham on the Gazza trail

Freddie's agency misses its goal

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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
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Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

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A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
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Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
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These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
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A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

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A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

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Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

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Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

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Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

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