Sochi

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Gareth Southgate: Miracle man? Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

And then there were four. Although perhaps only 3½, Croatia looking like a side more ready for a health farm than a World Cup semi-final by the time t(...)

Croatia’s Luka Modric, a product of Dinamo Zagreb, in action against Denmark during the last 16 match  the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium. Photograph: Efrem Lukatsky/AP

The Anderlecht academy has been the subject of renewed interest this week and a Belgian side littered with products of the club’s youth development s(...)

A taxi driver waits for customers in Saint Petersburg. Photograph: Mladen Antonov/AFP/Getty

After the heat in Kazan touching down in St Petersburg in the early hours of Monday morning came as something of a surprise, what with the cold and th(...)

 Edinson Cavani  celebrates scoring against Portugal. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

Portugal 1 Uruguay 2 Edinson Cavani sent Uruguay into a World Cup quarter-final against France with two goals of the highest order eliminating Portug(...)

Tourists and fans walk near the fan zone on Red Square in Moscow. Photograph: Vasily Maximov/AFP/Getty

Around 6.30pm last Sunday, a dozen England fans rolled into a Nizhny Novgorod metro carriage belting out the English World Cup song, “We’re on our way(...)

Cristiano Ronaldo  during a training session at the team’s base in Kratovo before the last 16 clash with Uruguay in which he will be up against some familiar foes. Photograph: Francisco Leong/AFP/Getty

Go on, admit it: one of the first things you thought of when the draw put Portugal and Uruguay together was the kind of thing nobody wants to see but(...)

Roberto Martinez: “We have a lot of players who are at important times in their careers and they want to make their mark.”  Photograph: Nelson Almeida/AFP/Getty

Roberto Martinez believes Belgium need to “start the World Cup by showing we know how to win,” as a first step to delivering on the potential everyone(...)

 Hannes Halldorsson of Iceland saves  Lionel Messi’s penalty during the 1-1 draw in Moscow.  Photograph: EPA

Argentina 1 Iceland 1 Sometimes you hit a wall, and Iceland make a bigger wall than most. The trials of Lionel Messi in the national shirt of Argenti(...)

Saudi Arabia crown prince Mohammad bin Salman, Fifa president Gianni Infantino and Russian president Vladimir Putin  in Moscow on Thursday. Photograph:  Alexei Druzhinin/Sputnik/EPA

Sport and politics shouldn’t mix, goes the earnest cliché. Except they do – all the time. And that’s partly what makes some sports so interesting. The(...)

 Spain’s new boss Fernando Hierro with captain Sergio Ramos. Ronald Wittek/EPA

The way these things usually work, the player does his bit then is allowed to leave for training, but Sergio Ramos would never feel comfortable willin(...)

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