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Sports news briefs — Oct. 15

Compiled from wire reports

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Soccer

England, Spain gain berths in World Cup

• England and defending champion Spain qualified for the World Cup on Tuesday night along with Russia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, which earned its first berth as an independent nation.

Wayne Rooney scored in the 41st minute and Steven Gerrard in the 88th to give England (6-0-4) a 2-0 win over Poland at London’s Wembley Stadium and first place in Group H by one point over Ukraine (6-1-3). The Three Lions qualified for their 14th World Cup and fifth in a row.

Spain (6-0-2) won Group I with a 2-0 victory over visiting Georgia on goals by Alvaro Negredo in the 26th minute and Juan Mata in the 61st. The Spanish, who have won three consecutive major tournaments, qualified for their 10th consecutive World Cup.

France (5-1-2) was second and will be in the playoffs despite defeating visiting Finland 3-0 on goals by Franck Ribery and Karim Benzema around Joona Toivio’s own goal.

Graham Zusi and Aron Johannsson scored in second-half stoppage time, and the United States rallied for a 3-2 win at Panama. The U.S., which clinched a World Cup berth last month, didn’t use most of its starters, and Gabriel Torres put Panama ahead in the 18th minute in a downpour at Panama City. Michael Orozco tied it the 64th minute. Luis Tejada scored in the 83rd. But Zusi scored 1:24 into three minutes of stoppage time, and Johannsson added his first international goal at the 2:40 mark, giving the U.S. a record-tying 22 points in the hexagonal, the final round of the North and Central American and Caribbean region.

Lionel Messi looks set to return to Barcelona’s lineup after taking part in a full training session on Tuesday. The 26-year-old strained a thigh during Barcelona’s 2-0 victory over Almeria on Sept. 28 and was sidelined since the match.

Cristiano Ronaldo will not face disciplinary action by FIFA over his yellow card against Israel, which was suggested to have been deliberate to provoke a one-match ban before the European World Cup playoffs.

college football

Nebraska lineman set to have surgery

• Nebraska lost its top offensive lineman, most likely for the rest of the year. Coach Bo Pelini said that Spencer Long will have surgery Thursday on his left knee. Long was hurt on the Huskers’ fifth play from scrimmage on Saturday at Purdue. Nebraska won the game 44-7. Long was an Outland Trophy candidate after making the All-Big Ten first team and All-America second team in 2012.

other SPORTS

Rose’s 67 leads Grand Slam event

• U.S. Open champion Justin Rose birdied the first hole with a blind shot he hit to within a foot of the pin, and he stayed in front until he completed a 4-under 67 for a 2-shot lead over Jason Dufner in PGA Grand Slam of Golf in Southampton, Bermuda. The 36-hole exhibition, which concludes today, is for the four major champions of the year. British Open champion Phil Mickelson chose not to play and was replaced at Port Royal Golf Course by three-time major champion Padraig Harrington. Dufner, who won the PGA Championship, opened with a 69. Masters Tournament champion Adam Scott struggled late in the wind for a 70. Harrington, who won the event last year as an alternate, shot 74 in the first day.

• Columbus Blue Jackets forward Matt Calvert underwent surgery to repair an abdominal injury, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced. The surgery was performed by Dr. William Meyers at the Vincera Institute in Philadelphia. Calvert is expected to be out for approximately six weeks.

Sean Edwards, a promising British driver and the son of former Formula One driver Guy Edwards, died in a crash during training in Australia. He was 26. Edwards, the Supercup Championship leader, was in the passenger seat as an instructor for a private training session at Queensland Raceway at Willowbank, outside Brisbane. The Porsche 996 Edwards was riding crashed into a tire wall.

— From wire reports


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