Other News

Gianni Infantino, the president of FIFA, had pressed for increasing the number of countries that play in the World Cup when he ran for the leadership of the organization last year. He said it would invigorate the event, which is expected to bring an additional $1 billion in television, sponsorship and ticketing revenue in the first cycle alone. Credit Matt Dunham/Associated Press
Soccer Sports

FIFA to Expand World Cup to 48 Teams in 2026

ZURICH — The World Cup will grow to 48 teams within a decade under a plan approved unanimously on Tuesday by FIFA’s governing council, an enormous expansion of soccer’s showpiece tournament that was hailed by supporters as a victory for inclusion but that was derided by critics as the latest […]

Uganda, celebrating a goal against Botswana, is one of the teams that are likely to benefit the most from the coming World Cup expansion. Credit Monirul Bhuiyan/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
Soccer Sports

In Soccer’s Hinterlands, World Cup Expansion Opens a Door

While the soccer world was chewing over FIFA’s controversial decision on Tuesday to increase the size of the World Cup finals to 48 teams from 32, Milutin Sredojevic was trying to block out the noise. Sredojevic, a Serbian coach, is in Dubai preparing Uganda’s national team for the Africa Cup […]

Manchester United’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic, right, headed in a goal during a match against Liverpool in Manchester on Sunday. Credit Nigel Roddis/European Pressphoto Agency
Soccer Sports

Restoring an Atmosphere, if Not Yet an Aura, in Manchester

MANCHESTER, England — In the last five minutes of a nerve-shredding 1-1 draw on Sunday, as his team swarmed forward and Liverpool seemed to tilt and teeter, Manchester United Manager José Mourinho got what he wanted. He had asked his club’s fans — so frequently accused of sitting on their […]

LeBron James and Stephen Curry on Christmas. The final regular-season game between the Cavaliers and Warriors is Monday. Credit Tony Dejak/Associated Press
Basketball Sports

Cavaliers-Warriors Rematch Carries Meaning for Past and Future

OAKLAND, Calif. — No team is immune from the rigors of the N.B.A. schedule, not even royalty like the defending champion Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavaliers are on their most extended trip of the season, a stretch that has already included five games in five cities. They have persevered through illness, […]

Andy Murray served in his first-round victory over Illya Marchenko on Monday at the Australian Open. Credit Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
Sports Tennis

Andy Murray, No. 1 and Newly Knighted, Still Has Room for More

MELBOURNE, Australia — “So Ivan, are you calling Andy ‘Sir’?” Ivan Lendl paused and then laughed, which would surely seem strange to those in the front row of the players’ box who know him only as Andy Murray’s stone-faced coach. “Definitely not,” Lendl said, chuckling some more before heading off […]

The Milky Way as seen from a mountain in western Switzerland in August 2016. Credit Anthony Anex/European Pressphoto Agency
Science & Tech

Absolutely Every Bit of Our Galaxy

Astronomers have arrived at what they believe to be the most accurate measure yet of the mass of the Milky Way: about 4.8 x 1011 times the mass of the sun, or “solar masses,” to use a standard unit of mass in astronomy. This comes to about 9.5 x 1041 […]

Shinya Yamanaka directs Kyoto University’s Center for iPS Cell Research and Application, and leads a small research lab at the Gladstone Institutes, which is affiliated with the University of California, San Francisco. Credit Ko Sasaki for The New York Times
Science & Tech

The Stem-Cell Revolution Is Coming — Slowly

In 2001, President George W. Bush issued an executive order banning federal funding for new sources of stem cells developed from preimplantation human embryos. The action stalled research and discouraged scientists. Five years later, a Kyoto University scientist, Shinya Yamanaka, and his graduate student, Kazutoshi Takahashi, re-energized the field by […]

A bow-shape feature stretched across much of Venus’s atmosphere in December 2015. Scientists from Japan’s Akatsuki spacecraft mission called it a gravity wave.
Science & Tech

Venus Smiled, With a Mysterious Wave Across Its Atmosphere

For a few days, Venus smiled — sideways. When Japan’s Akatsuki spacecraft pulled into orbit around Venus in December 2015 and turned on its instruments, it almost immediately discovered a bow-shape feature in the atmosphere stretching 6,000 miles, almost pole to pole — a sideways smile. More remarkably, while Venus’s […]

Clockwise from top left: Bill Gates, Amancio Ortega Gaona, Warren E. Buffett, Carlos Slim Helú, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, Lawrence J. Ellison, Michael R. Bloomberg. Credit NYT; Reuters; Reuters; Reuters; Getty; European Pressphoto Agency; Getty; AP
Business World

World’s 8 Richest Have as Much Wealth as Bottom Half of Global Population

How concentrated has wealth become in the globalized modern world? Here’s one answer: Just eight of the richest people on earth own as much combined wealth as half the human race. That’s a notable change from last year, when it was reckoned to take 62 of the superrich to match […]

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Berkeley, Calif., in 1967. Credit Associated Press

Celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Still Faces Pushback

Today is Martin Luther King’s Birthday, the federal holiday that honors the assassinated civil rights leader. Well, not everywhere. All 50 states celebrate the public holiday on the third Monday in January, but not all states, cities and towns dedicate it solely to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. […]