Sport Seattle, led by Russell Wilson, are favourites to win next month's Super Bowl

For devotees of the NFL, this is as good as it gets – the divisional round of the play-offs, four games pitting the regular season’s finest against four challengers already battle-hardened by victory in last weekend’s ever-treacherous wild-card round. And in 2014 there’s an extra twist: the prospect that one of the longest, most painful droughts in US sport might be near an end.

Woman dies after cosmetic treatment

A British woman died after travelling to America for a cosmetic buttock treatment.

Live-in helper was 'Jihad Jane' terrorist

A US woman who was the live-in caretaker for her boyfriend's elderly father, told a judge that she had worked secretly online under the name Jihad Jane to support Islamic terrorists and had moved overseas to further her plan to kill a Swedish artist who had offended Muslims.

Video: Gas explosion caught on film

One utility worker has been killed after a huge blast high pressure gas main in Philadelphia, USA.

Stem cells clue to beating baldness

Activating dormant stem cells in the scalp could be the key to banishing baldness, scientists believe.

Lemon curd cheesecake

Serves 4

Laszlo Polgar

Laszlo Polgar, who died on 19 September 2010 aged 63, was a Hungarian bass and member of the Zurich Opera. His most famous role was probably that of Bluebeard in Bela Bartok's Bluebeard's Castle, for which he won a Grammy Award for best opera recording in 1999 along with soprano Jessye Norman, conductor Pierre Boulez and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

R.E.S.P.E.C.T. Find out what it means to Condi

Former US secretary of state hits the stage with Aretha Franklin

How pre-season jollies got turned into serious money-makers

They used to be for sweating off a summer of excess but now club tours are all about building the brand

Manchester United win pre-season friendly

Manchester United beat the Philadelphia Union 1-0 yesterday in a scrappy game against Major League Soccer's newest team.

Jeremy Laurance: The biggest puzzle is the rise in cases in the past 30 years

The authors dismissed suggestions that lifestyle changes were behind the 12-fold increase

Drugs 'improve social skills of autism sufferers'

Scientists are opening a new front against autism by using drugs to alter brain chemistry that may ameliorate the worst effects of the condition.

Hernandez completes Manchester United transfer

Manchester United have completed the deal to sign Javier Hernandez after the Mexico striker was granted a work permit today.

US vice president Joe Biden's son suffers a stroke

The elder son of US vice president Joe Biden was recovering in hospital today after suffering a stroke.

Man, 80, strangled wife over 'affair'

An elderly man has admitted strangling his wife in their suburban Philadelphia apartment after he accused her of infidelity and she laughed at him.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
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
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

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

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

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
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

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

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
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

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us