A last chance for Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Kylian Mbappé back on the biggest stage of all. Brazil bidding for a record-extending sixth title.
One of the most eagerly anticipated World Cups in memory — as much for off-the-field reasons as those on it — is just around the corner in Qatar and excitement is building after the qualification period was wrapped.
NEW YORK (AP) — The former president of El Salvador’s soccer federation was sentenced on Thursday to 16 months in prison in the long-running FIFA corruption scandal.
GENEVA (AP) — Fans going to the World Cup in Qatar must show a negative COVID-19 test when they arrive as part of the host nation’s rules to combat COVID-19, organizers said Thursday.
GENEVA (AP) — Denmark will wear team jerseys at the World Cup that protest the human rights record of host nation Qatar, with a black option unveiled Wednesday to honor migrant workers who died during construction work for the tournament.
GENEVA (AP) — FIFA judges comprehensively rejected the Chilean soccer federation's entire case in a failed appeal this month to replace Ecuador at the World Cup, according to the detailed verdict published Wednesday.
MANCHESTER, England (AP) — When FIFA president Gianni Infantino dashed from Geneva to Paris to watch World Cup favorite Brazil in its final warmup game before Qatar, he cannot have expected to be confronted by such visual proof of the racism that continues to infect soccer.
LONDON (AP) — All roads now lead to Qatar.
With the conclusion of the group stage of the Nations League, Europe's top soccer countries have played their final competitive games ahead of the World Cup.
MADRID (AP) — With his well-timed header across the area setting up a decisive goal, forward Nico Williams may have secured his spot in Spain’s World Cup squad.
The 20-year-old Williams came off the bench to assist Álvaro Morata’s 88th-minute winner in a victory over Portugal that guaranteed Spain a spot in the Nations League’s Final Four tournament on Tuesday.
HARRISON, N.J. (AP) — Lionel Messi responded to an in-game, on-field request for a signature with a signature goal.
Messi scored two goals and was twice accosted by fans running on the field as Argentina extended its unbeaten streak to 35 matches over three years by beating Jamaica 3-0 on Tuesday night in its next-to-last World Cup warmup match.
HARRISON, N,J. (AP) — Lionel Scaloni will remain as Argentina's national team coach through the 2026 World Cup.
Chiqui Tapia, president of the Argentine Football Association, made the announcement after Tuesday night's 3-0 win over Jamaica in the Albiceleste's next-to-last tuneup match for this year's World Cup.
The United States will limp into the World Cup, and not just because of all the Americans' injuries.
The U.S. played a 0-0 draw against Saudi Arabia on Tuesday night at Murcia, Spain, that was somewhere between unimpressive and alarming.
MADRID (AP) — Luis Enrique was ready for the criticism to start pouring out back home. He knew another setback so close to the World Cup would raise questions about his team and his work.
Then a late goal changed it all, and it was all joy and praise for La Roja heading into soccer's showcase event.
DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Qatar has tested out a massive fleet of buses ahead of next month's World Cup, when an estimated 1.2 million soccer fans will descend on the small Gulf nation, an official said Tuesday.
Christian Pulisic, Ricardo Pepi, DeAndre Yedlin and Kellyn Acosta entered the starting lineup as U.S. coach Gregg Berhalter made four changes for Tuesday night's exhibition against Saudi Arabia at Murcia, Spain, the last match for the Americans before the World Cup.
GENEVA (AP) — The head of the World Trade Organization said Tuesday the benefits of working with FIFA to create more jobs in Africa outweighed concerns about the controversies around Qatar hosting soccer’s World Cup this year.
The crisis crept up on Gareth Southgate.
Just 14 months ago, England was playing in a European Championship final — and coming oh-so-close to winning it — backed by fans who rediscovered their connection with the national team.
Part one of the healing process is complete for Italy.
Looking to regain respect after failing to qualify for a second straight World Cup, the Azzurri advanced to next year’s finals tournament in the Nations League by winning at Hungary 2-0 thanks to goals by Giacomo Raspadori and Federico Dimarco on Monday.
GENEVA (AP) — The global soccer players' union and the group representing domestic leagues around the world have teamed up to strengthen their voice in negotiations involving off-field politics such as the international match calendar.
PARIS (AP) — Croatia and the Netherlands finished warming up for the World Cup in style on Sunday by winning their last Nations League games to qualify for the Final Four tournament next year.
Croatia topped Group A1 by winning 3-1 in Austria to relegate the hosts to the second tier of the Nations League, while the unbeaten Dutch defeated visiting Belgium 1-0 and won Group A4 with 16 points — six more than second-place Belgium.
BERLIN (AP) — Two teams with battered pride face each other at Wembley Stadium on Monday as England hosts Germany for a World Cup audition in the Nations League.
England is already certain to finish bottom of Group A3 and drop out of the top tier of the Nations League after losing to Italy on Friday.
Right back Reggie Cannon will miss the United States' last World Cup warmup against Saudi Arabia on Tuesday because of a strained left groin strain, the latest in the Americans' long injured list.
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Diogo Dalot helped Portugal take control of its Nations League group by scoring his first two international goals in a 4-0 rout at the Czech Republic on Saturday.
Spain blew its lead of Group A2 after flopping in a 2-1 loss to Switzerland in front of its disappointed fans in Zaragoza.
ROME (AP) — It was a rough night for two teams expected to be World Cup contenders. England lost at Italy 1-0 and was relegated from the top tier of the Nations League, and Germany lost at home to Hungary by the same score.
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Borja Iglesias has been waiting for this moment for a very long time.
The Real Betis striker hopes to make his international debut at age 29 when Spain hosts Switzerland in the Nations League on Saturday in Zaragoza.
With the World Cup approaching and final roster decisions looming, U.S. soccer players gave a dismal performance in a 2-0 exhibition loss to Japan on Friday in Düsseldorf, Germany.
Daichi Kamada scored following Weston McKennie’s giveaway in the 24th minute and Kaoru Mitoma added a goal in the 88th.
DÜSSELDORF, Germany (AP) — Christian Pulisic did not dress for the United States' match against Japan on Friday in Germany because of an unspecified injury and missed the Americans' next-to-last warmup before the World Cup.
PARIS (AP) — A police investigation into allegations that France soccer star Paul Pogba was targeted by extortionists took a bizarre new twist Friday with the release by one of the suspects, his elder brother Mathias, of a long string of videos taking aim at the 2018 World Cup winner, his entourage and wealthy lifestyle.
PARIS (AP) — Kylian Mbappe added another fine solo goal to his collection and Olivier Giroud moved closer to France's scoring record as the defending World Cup champions beat Austria 2-0 in the Nations League on Thursday.
Gregg Berhalter's U.S. roster as the World Cup approaches is as notable for its absences as for those set to play in Friday's warmup against Japan at Düsseldorf, Germany.
Tim Weah, Yunus Musah, Chris Richards, Antonee Robinson and Zack Steffen are out with injuries for the Japan game and Tuesday's final warmup against Saudi Arabia at Murcia, Spain.
BERLIN (AP) — German soccer club Hoffenheim is skipping this year's World Cup in Qatar.
The club said Thursday it will not give any coverage to the tournament because of the difficulty in providing what it says is the “urgently required analytical commentary contextualizing the sporting events” in the Middle East country.
MADRID (AP) — Former Spain and Manchester City midfielder David Silva has been found guilty of hurting a woman during a brawl, a Spanish court has ruled.
According to court documents seen by The Associated Press on Thursday, the incident occurred on June 19 during the Carnaval celebration on the Canary Islands where a fight broke out between a group of people and Silva and his companions.
BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s World Cup preparations have been disrupted by the coronavirus, forcing coach Hansi Flick to improvise for tournament warmup games against Hungary and England.
The imminent prospect of relegation from the Nations League's elite is unlikely to worry Gareth Southgate.
What might be troubling the England coach far more is the fitness issues, poor form or fragile club status of some of his key players two months out from the World Cup.
Here's some great news for Brazil: Neymar is winning everyone over this season with his goals and attitude for Paris Saint-Germain.
GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) — Ukraine finally lost a game at Hampden Park, beaten 3-0 by Scotland which moved atop their Nations League group on Wednesday.
The teams returned to the place where Ukraine won a World Cup playoff in June, though neither will go to the tournament in Qatar in November because Wales advanced from their knockout bracket.
BUENOS AIRES (AP) — Argentina's government has joined the squabble between shop owners and the local manufacturers of popular but scarce World Cup sticker albums.
Soccer fans in the South American nation have struggled to find the collectible stickers two months before the tournament kicks off in Qatar.
LISBON, Portugal (AP) — This year's World Cup apparently won't be the end for Cristiano Ronaldo.
The 37-year-old Portugal star said he is not considering retiring from international soccer in December after the tournament in Qatar, and plans to play at the 2024 European Championship.
GENEVA (AP) — FIFA came under pressure Wednesday from several European soccer federations who want their captains to wear an armband with a rainbow heart design during World Cup games in Qatar to campaign against discrimination.
MADRID (AP) — Koke Resurrección and his Atlético Madrid teammates feel right at home in the Spain setup.
Koke, Marcos Llorente and Álvaro Morata are used to not thinking too far ahead, as Atlético coach Diego Simeone is an avid proponent of the match-by-match attitude.
BENEVENTO, Italy (AP) — Former Ballon d’Or winner Fabio Cannavaro was named coach of Serie B team Benevento on Wednesday, marking his first managerial job in Italy after previously working in the Middle East and China.
BRUSSELS (AP) — Will Eden Hazard's lack of playing time at Real Madrid drag down Belgium at the World Cup?
This is the question all Belgium fans are asking, and they will get an idea of the answer when their team take on Wales and the Netherlands in the Nations League this week.
During his difficult final years at Real Madrid, Gareth Bale only truly found happiness on a soccer field when he linked up with Wales for matches with his national team.
Now, after moving to the United States, he is feeling the love at club level, too.
PARIS (AP) — France's last competitive soccer games before the World Cup should be a chance for coach Didier Deschamps to test his best team.
But as France prepares to play Austria in the Nations League on Thursday, tension hangs over the defending champion because of ongoing issues off the field.
BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — A blast from the past will be on the bench for Australia when the World Cup-bound Socceroos take on New Zealand in a friendly on Thursday — former coach Guus Hiddink.
Hiddink will act as head coach Graham Arnold’s assistant for the match in Brisbane in a role reversal of the side’s journey to the final 16 at the World Cup in Germany in 2006, when Australia lost to eventual champions Italy 1-0.
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The Latest on the opening day of the U.N. General Assembly's annual high-level meeting (all times EDT):
El Salvador President Nayib Bukele has told the U.N.
MILAN (AP) — United States defender Sergiño Dest joined Italian champion AC Milan with the hope of getting more playing time ahead of the World Cup.
ZURICH (AP) — FIFA banned Honduras player Wisdom Quaye from soccer for 18 months on Tuesday for doping with a steroid at a World Cup qualifying game against the United States.
Quaye tested positive for clostebol after Honduras lost 3-0 to the U.S. in February, FIFA said.
Before every game, Ivan Toney receives a message from his mother.
“Be a beast,” it reads.
So that’s what he tries to do. Whether it’s for Brentford as one of the Premier League’s leading scorers or, in the next few days, as the newbie in England’s national team.
BERLIN (AP) — Qatar’s ambassador to Germany was urged Monday to abolish his country’s penalties for homosexuality at a human rights congress hosted by the German soccer federation two months before the Middle East country stages the World Cup.