WORLD CUP 2018 QUALIFIERS NEWS
Croatia cruise into World Cup finals after second-leg draw vs. Greece

Croatia cruise into World Cup finals after second-leg draw vs. Greece

Croatia comfortably negotiated the second leg of their play-off tie against Greece with a goalless draw sealing their place at next summer's World Cup.

Northern Ireland's finals dream crushed by Switzerland in dramatic ending

Northern Ireland's finals dream crushed by Switzerland in dramatic ending

Northern Ireland saw their World Cup dream die in Basel on Sunday, though it was a controversial penalty three days earlier that ultimately sent Switzerland through to Russia.

Ireland hold Denmark to first leg stalemate

Ireland hold Denmark to first leg stalemate

Darren Randolph was the Republic of Ireland's hero as they returned from Denmark with a clean sheet in a 0-0 draw after surviving a stern test of their World Cup credentials.

Johansson strikes as Sweden take upper hand against Italy

Johansson strikes as Sweden take upper hand against Italy

Italy must beat Sweden at San Siro on Monday to have any hope of qualifying for the World Cup in Russia after Jakob Johansson condemned the Azzurri to a 1-0 first-leg defeat in Stockholm.

Croatia open three-goal lead over Greece after playoff first leg

Croatia open three-goal lead over Greece after playoff first leg

Croatia put one foot toward a place in Russia next year with a 4-1 win over Greece in the first leg of their World Cup qualifying playoff on Thursday.

Controversial penalty hands Switzerland first-leg win vs. N. Ireland

Controversial penalty hands Switzerland first-leg win vs. N. Ireland

Northern Ireland experienced their own Thierry Henry moment in a World Cup playoff as Switzerland gained the upper hand in Belfast with a controversially-awarded penalty.

Italy to play Sweden, Rep of Ireland to meet Denmark in World Cup playoff

Italy to play Sweden, Rep of Ireland to meet Denmark in World Cup playoff

Italy have been drawn against Sweden in the European playoffs for the 2018 World Cup, while Republic of Ireland will meet Denmark.

Lionel Messi at his best as hat trick carries Argentina into World Cup

Lionel Messi at his best as hat trick carries Argentina into World Cup

Argentina conceded after just 37 seconds in their must-win game against Ecuador -- but Lionel Messi came to the rescue as his side booked their place at next summer's World Cup.

United States will miss the 2018 World Cup after loss to Trinidad and Tobago

United States will miss the 2018 World Cup after loss to Trinidad and Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago beat the United States 2-1 in the team's final Hexagonal World Cup qualifier, meaning the Americans will miss out on the game's biggest tournament in Russia in 2018.

Netherlands eliminated from World Cup contention despite win

Netherlands eliminated from World Cup contention despite win

Sweden secured a spot in the UEFA World Cup qualifying playoffs despite losing 2-0 to Netherlands, whose elimination was confirmed.

Portugal defeat Switzerland to secure berth at 2018 World Cup

Portugal defeat Switzerland to secure berth at 2018 World Cup

Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal confirmed their spot at the 2018 World Cup by beating Switzerland 2-0 in their final UEFA qualifier on Tuesday.

Antoine Griezmann leads France to win and place at 2018 World Cup

Antoine Griezmann leads France to win and place at 2018 World Cup

Antoine Griezmann scored one and made another as France secured World Cup qualification with a narrow 2-1 victory over Belarus in Paris.

Antonio Candreva's goal enough to give Italy victory in Albania

Antonio Candreva's goal enough to give Italy victory in Albania

Antonio Candreva's second-half strike was enough for Italy to end their 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign with a narrow 1-0 victory in Albania.

McClean goal lifts Rep. of Ireland into playoff

McClean goal lifts Rep. of Ireland into playoff

James McClean sent the Republic of Ireland into a World Cup playoff as Wales' hopes of qualification were ended by a 1-0 defeat in Cardiff.

Serbia seal World Cup berth as Croatia reach play-offs

Serbia seal World Cup berth as Croatia reach play-offs

Serbia qualified for the 2018 World Cup after a 74th-minute goal by substitute Aleksandar Prijovic gave them a 1-0 home win over Georgia on Monday and enabled them to finish top of Europe's Group D with 21 points from 10 games.

Iceland down Kosovo to qualify for World Cup for first time

Iceland down Kosovo to qualify for World Cup for first time

Iceland reached the World Cup for the first time when they beat Kosovo 2-0 on Monday to finish top of Group I and qualify for next year's finals in Russia.

Illarramendi stunner ensures Spain finish campaign unbeaten

Illarramendi stunner ensures Spain finish campaign unbeaten

Spain ended their qualification campaign by beating Israel 1-0 on a frustrating night at the Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem.

Robert Lewandowski helps Poland seal World Cup berth with Montenegro win

Robert Lewandowski helps Poland seal World Cup berth with Montenegro win

Poland sealed their first World Cup spot since the 2006 tournament after an early onslaught and a late flourish, including a goal from the excellent Robert Lewandowski, gave them a 4-2 home win over Montenegro on Sunday.

Germany beat Azerbaijan to maintain perfect qualification record

Germany beat Azerbaijan to maintain perfect qualification record

Leon Goretzka inspired Germany to a 5-1 rout over Azerbaijan as the defending champions wrapped up their World Cup qualification campaign in style.

Harry Kane penalty enough to seal dull England win over Lithuania

Harry Kane penalty enough to seal dull England win over Lithuania

England once again disappointed in victory as Gareth Southgate's men stuttered against Lithuania in the final competitive match before next summer's World Cup.

Egypt qualify for Russia 2018 with late Mohamed Salah goal

Egypt qualify for Russia 2018 with late Mohamed Salah goal

Egypt became the second African nation after Nigeria to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup following a last-gasp 2-1 win against Congo-Brazzaville.

Italy finish second place in Group G after Macedonia draw

Italy finish second place in Group G after Macedonia draw

Giampiero Ventura's misfiring Italy limped into the uncertainty of the World Cup qualifying playoffs after being held to a 1-1 draw by Macedonia in Turin.

Spain book Russia spot with comfy defeat of Albania

Spain book Russia spot with comfy defeat of Albania

Spain sealed their place in next year's World Cup finals with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Albania in a match which saw La Roja centre-back Gerard Pique once again the target of whistles and jeers.

Carlos Lampe the hero as Brazil draw vs. Bolivia in La Paz

Carlos Lampe the hero as Brazil draw vs. Bolivia in La Paz

Brazil and Bolivia played an entertaining 0-0 draw in a game that did nothing to change either side's World Cup fate on Thursday.

Argentina's World Cup hopes in trouble after goalless draw vs. Peru

Argentina's World Cup hopes in trouble after goalless draw vs. Peru

Argentina are in peril of missing their first World Cup since 1970 after they were held to a 0-0 draw against Peru.

Germany seal place in World Cup finals with comfortable victory over Northern Ireland

Germany seal place in World Cup finals with comfortable victory over Northern Ireland

Germany will be in Russia next summer to defend their World Cup crown having sealed their qualification by inflicting a first competitive home defeat on Northern Ireland in four years.

Harry Kane sends England to Russia World Cup with stoppage-time winner

Harry Kane sends England to Russia World Cup with stoppage-time winner

England claimed their place at the 2018 World Cup in Russia courtesy of a late Harry Kane goal against Slovenia on Thursday night, while a 10-man Slovakia were beaten 1-0 by Scotland.

Italy edges Israel to keep pressure on Spain

Italy edges Israel to keep pressure on Spain

Italy kept the pressure on Spain in the race for automatic World Cup qualification as Ciro Immobile scored the only goal in a 1-0 win over Israel.

Alvaro Morata, Iago Aspas lead Spain to rout of Liechtenstein

Alvaro Morata, Iago Aspas lead Spain to rout of Liechtenstein

Alvaro Morata and substitute Iago Aspas each scored twice as Spain moved closer to the World Cup finals with an 8-0 win over Group G minnows Liechtenstein in Vaduz.

Germany put six past Norway to remain perfect in qualifying

Germany put six past Norway to remain perfect in qualifying

Germany coasted to a 6-0 victory over Norway with a four-goal first-half blitz to extend their 100 percent record to eight matches -- but it still was not enough to guarantee them World Cup qualification.

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World Cup finals draw pots now known after completion of qualifying
World Cup 2018 news

World Cup finals draw pots now known after completion of qualifying

The seedings for the 2018 World Cup finals draw can now be confirmed after Peru booked the 32nd and last place at next summer's tournament in Russia.

Gian Piero Ventura sacked by Italy following World Cup failure
Italy news

Gian Piero Ventura sacked by Italy following World Cup failure

Gian Piero Ventura has been sacked as coach of Italy after failing to guide them to next summer's World Cup, the Italian Football Federation has announced.

Denmark reach World Cup, doom Ireland after Eriksen's hat trick
Republic of Ireland 1 - 5 Denmark

Denmark reach World Cup, doom Ireland after Eriksen's hat trick

Christian Eriksen's hat trick helped Denmark qualify for the 2018 World Cup with a 5-1 win over Republic of Ireland, whose hopes ended in the UEFA playoffs once more.

Italy eliminated as resilient Sweden earn draw
Italy 0 - 0 Sweden

Italy eliminated as resilient Sweden earn draw

Italy have failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time since 1958, as Sweden secured their spot in Russia after the teams' 0-0 draw on Monday in Milan.

Croatia cruise into World Cup finals after second-leg draw vs. Greece
Greece 0 - 0 Croatia

Croatia cruise into World Cup finals after second-leg draw vs. Greece

Croatia comfortably negotiated the second leg of their play-off tie against Greece with a goalless draw sealing their place at next summer's World Cup.

Northern Ireland's finals dream crushed by Switzerland in dramatic ending
Switzerland 0 - 0 Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland's finals dream crushed by Switzerland in dramatic ending

Northern Ireland saw their World Cup dream die in Basel on Sunday, though it was a controversial penalty three days earlier that ultimately sent Switzerland through to Russia.

Ireland hold Denmark to first leg stalemate
Denmark 0 - 0 Republic of Ireland

Ireland hold Denmark to first leg stalemate

Darren Randolph was the Republic of Ireland's hero as they returned from Denmark with a clean sheet in a 0-0 draw after surviving a stern test of their World Cup credentials.

Johansson strikes as Sweden take upper hand against Italy
Sweden 1 - 0 Italy

Johansson strikes as Sweden take upper hand against Italy

Italy must beat Sweden at San Siro on Monday to have any hope of qualifying for the World Cup in Russia after Jakob Johansson condemned the Azzurri to a 1-0 first-leg defeat in Stockholm.

Croatia open three-goal lead over Greece after playoff first leg
Croatia 4 - 1 Greece

Croatia open three-goal lead over Greece after playoff first leg

Croatia put one foot toward a place in Russia next year with a 4-1 win over Greece in the first leg of their World Cup qualifying playoff on Thursday.

Controversial penalty hands Switzerland first-leg win vs. N. Ireland
N. Ireland 0 - 1 Switzerland

Controversial penalty hands Switzerland first-leg win vs. N. Ireland

Northern Ireland experienced their own Thierry Henry moment in a World Cup playoff as Switzerland gained the upper hand in Belfast with a controversially-awarded penalty.

Italy to play Sweden, Rep of Ireland to meet Denmark in World Cup playoff
World Cup playoff draw

Italy to play Sweden, Rep of Ireland to meet Denmark in World Cup playoff

Italy have been drawn against Sweden in the European playoffs for the 2018 World Cup, while Republic of Ireland will meet Denmark.

Lionel Messi at his best as hat trick carries Argentina into World Cup
Ecuador 1 - 3 Argentina

Lionel Messi at his best as hat trick carries Argentina into World Cup

Argentina conceded after just 37 seconds in their must-win game against Ecuador -- but Lionel Messi came to the rescue as his side booked their place at next summer's World Cup.

United States will miss the 2018 World Cup after loss to Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago 2 - 1 USA

United States will miss the 2018 World Cup after loss to Trinidad and Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago beat the United States 2-1 in the team's final Hexagonal World Cup qualifier, meaning the Americans will miss out on the game's biggest tournament in Russia in 2018.

Netherlands eliminated from World Cup contention despite win
Netherlands 2 - 0 Sweden

Netherlands eliminated from World Cup contention despite win

Sweden secured a spot in the UEFA World Cup qualifying playoffs despite losing 2-0 to Netherlands, whose elimination was confirmed.

Portugal defeat Switzerland to secure berth at 2018 World Cup
Portugal 2 - 0 Switzerland

Portugal defeat Switzerland to secure berth at 2018 World Cup

Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal confirmed their spot at the 2018 World Cup by beating Switzerland 2-0 in their final UEFA qualifier on Tuesday.

Antoine Griezmann leads France to win and place at 2018 World Cup
France 2 - 1 Belarus

Antoine Griezmann leads France to win and place at 2018 World Cup

Antoine Griezmann scored one and made another as France secured World Cup qualification with a narrow 2-1 victory over Belarus in Paris.

Antonio Candreva's goal enough to give Italy victory in Albania
Albania 0 - 1 Italy

Antonio Candreva's goal enough to give Italy victory in Albania

Antonio Candreva's second-half strike was enough for Italy to end their 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign with a narrow 1-0 victory in Albania.

McClean goal lifts Rep. of Ireland into playoff
Republic of Ireland 1 - 0 Wales

McClean goal lifts Rep. of Ireland into playoff

James McClean sent the Republic of Ireland into a World Cup playoff as Wales' hopes of qualification were ended by a 1-0 defeat in Cardiff.

Serbia seal World Cup berth as Croatia reach play-offs
Serbia 1-0 Georgia

Serbia seal World Cup berth as Croatia reach play-offs

Serbia qualified for the 2018 World Cup after a 74th-minute goal by substitute Aleksandar Prijovic gave them a 1-0 home win over Georgia on Monday and enabled them to finish top of Europe's Group D with 21 points from 10 games.

Iceland down Kosovo to qualify for World Cup for first time
Iceland 2 - 0 Kosovo

Iceland down Kosovo to qualify for World Cup for first time

Iceland reached the World Cup for the first time when they beat Kosovo 2-0 on Monday to finish top of Group I and qualify for next year's finals in Russia.

Illarramendi stunner ensures Spain finish campaign unbeaten
Israel 0 - 1 Spain

Illarramendi stunner ensures Spain finish campaign unbeaten

Spain ended their qualification campaign by beating Israel 1-0 on a frustrating night at the Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem.

Robert Lewandowski helps Poland seal World Cup berth with Montenegro win
Poland 4 - 2 Montenegro

Robert Lewandowski helps Poland seal World Cup berth with Montenegro win

Poland sealed their first World Cup spot since the 2006 tournament after an early onslaught and a late flourish, including a goal from the excellent Robert Lewandowski, gave them a 4-2 home win over Montenegro on Sunday.

Germany beat Azerbaijan to maintain perfect qualification record
Germany 5 - 1 Azerbaijan

Germany beat Azerbaijan to maintain perfect qualification record

Leon Goretzka inspired Germany to a 5-1 rout over Azerbaijan as the defending champions wrapped up their World Cup qualification campaign in style.

Harry Kane penalty enough to seal dull England win over Lithuania
Lithuania 0 - 1 England

Harry Kane penalty enough to seal dull England win over Lithuania

England once again disappointed in victory as Gareth Southgate's men stuttered against Lithuania in the final competitive match before next summer's World Cup.

Egypt qualify for Russia 2018 with late Mohamed Salah goal
Egypt 2 - 1 Congo

Egypt qualify for Russia 2018 with late Mohamed Salah goal

Egypt became the second African nation after Nigeria to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup following a last-gasp 2-1 win against Congo-Brazzaville.

Italy finish second place in Group G after Macedonia draw
Italy 1 - 1 Macedonia

Italy finish second place in Group G after Macedonia draw

Giampiero Ventura's misfiring Italy limped into the uncertainty of the World Cup qualifying playoffs after being held to a 1-1 draw by Macedonia in Turin.

Spain book Russia spot with comfy defeat of Albania
Spain 3 - 0 Albania

Spain book Russia spot with comfy defeat of Albania

Spain sealed their place in next year's World Cup finals with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Albania in a match which saw La Roja centre-back Gerard Pique once again the target of whistles and jeers.

Carlos Lampe the hero as Brazil draw vs. Bolivia in La Paz
Bolivia 0 - 0 Brazil

Carlos Lampe the hero as Brazil draw vs. Bolivia in La Paz

Brazil and Bolivia played an entertaining 0-0 draw in a game that did nothing to change either side's World Cup fate on Thursday.

Argentina's World Cup hopes in trouble after goalless draw vs. Peru
Argentina 0 - 0 Peru

Argentina's World Cup hopes in trouble after goalless draw vs. Peru

Argentina are in peril of missing their first World Cup since 1970 after they were held to a 0-0 draw against Peru.

Germany seal place in World Cup finals with comfortable victory over Northern Ireland
Germany 1 - 3 Northern Ireland

Germany seal place in World Cup finals with comfortable victory over Northern Ireland

Germany will be in Russia next summer to defend their World Cup crown having sealed their qualification by inflicting a first competitive home defeat on Northern Ireland in four years.