World Cup countdown
The clock's ticking to the start of the 2014 World Cup and it's now just 21 weeks to kick-off. It might sound like a long time but it really isn't. With that in mind, Sky Sports goes around the globe to get the best news, views and opinion on the road to Rio...
Last Updated: 17/01/14 3:41pm
Walk to the World Cup
Are you an avid enough follower of your country that you would be willing to walk for almost 2000km to see the Three Lions swelter in the South American sun? And furthermore, would you be emboldened enough to persuade 32 similarly fervent football fans to join you on your epic adventure?
Well that's exactly what three passionate England fans are undertaking. Adam Burns, Dave Bewick and Pete Johnston will be walking 1966km across South America to the FIFA World Cup in Brazil. The trio set off from Mendoza in Argentina on March 3rd and walk for 100 days through three countries and 29 towns and villages, before arriving in Porto Alegre on June 8th, four days before the start of the World Cup - and it's all for a good cause.
Webb in Charge
FIFA confirmed its list of 25 referees for the 2014 World Cup earlier in the week, with Howard Webb named as the only English representative in a team with Darren Cann and Michael Mullarkey.
There were calls for Mark Clattenburg to join Webb on the plane to Brazil but the Tyneside-based official failed to make the cut, with FIFA opting to stick with Webb, who refereed the 2010 World Cup final between Holland and Spain.
This is set to be the 42-year-old's last appearance at a World Cup, with FIFA insisting that referees cannot officiate once they hit the age-limit of 45.
This week saw the return of West Ham United striker Andy Carroll, who will be keen to impress England boss Roy Hodgson in the remaining four months of the Premier League season.
The former Newcastle United forward had missed the entirety of the season up until Saturday's 2-0 win at Cardiff City, where he featured for 18 minutes as a substitute.
With his sights set on a starting spot for this weekend's fixture against the Magpies at Upton Park, there is still a very real possibility he makes Hodgson's 25-man squad.
Sky Sports pundit Tony Gale discussed the possibility of four of England's fringe players making the squad, whilst revealing his favoured starting XI.
Toronto-bound Jermain Defoe, Sunderland's Adam Johnson, Tottenham's Aaron Lennon and Everton's Gareth Barry were all subject to Gale's approval.
The former West Ham defender believes Lennon has the biggest chance of going to Brazil following the injury to Theo Walcott and thinks Everton starlet Ross Barkley should feature in Hodgson's starting line-up.
Who'll be Winging it?
Clubs across the Premier League have been making a case for their wingers, after the news that Walcott will miss out on this year's tournament.
Steven Gerrard believes there is a great chance for Andros Townsend, Raheem Sterling and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to make a name for themselves in the next few months.
Tottenham boss Tim Sherwood held special praise for Townsend, saying: "Andros backs himself to be better than anyone else in the world."
Uruguay's Suarez Hope
Sky Sports' Jim White visited Uruguay this week to gauge opinion on the popularity of Liverpool's Luis Suarez, with the South American side set to face England on 19th June in Sao Paulo.
Jim gets the verdict on Suarez and Uruguay's hopes for the tournament by visiting the in-form striker's former side, Nacional, his adoring fans and Donato Rivas, member of the Uruguayan FA, who reveals: "He is an extraordinary player for Uruguay and we rate him very highly - but I would not say he is a hero. But we do regard him as one of the best players in the world."