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Update November, 2019


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'It will go crazy': Finland close to 1st major soccer finals

 

In this file photo dated Thursday Sept. 5, 2019, Jukka Raitala of Finland and Giorgos Masouras of Greece battle during the Euro 2020 group J qualifying soccer match in Tampere, Finland. (Markku Ulander/Lehtikuva FILE via AP)

In this file photo dated Friday, Oct. 12, 2018, Finland soccer fans react during the UEFA Nations League soccer match against Estonia at the A. Le Coq Arena stadium in Tallinn, Estonia. (AP Photo/Marko Mumm, FILE)

Steve Douglas

Helsinki (AP) — The temperatures are plummeting and the days are getting shorter as another harsh winter approaches in Finland.

Expectations around the country's soccer team are rising, though, like never before.

On Friday, Finland could seal a place in the finals of a major soccer tournament for the first time in its history. All that's needed is a home win over Liechtenstein, one of the world's weakest teams, in Helsinki and the Finns will take their place in next year's European Championship.

After so many past disappointments, it is a day many in this Nordic country of 5.5 million inhabitants — better known for its hockey team, rally drivers and javelin throwers — thought would never arrive.

It is one that could transcend soccer, changing the mentality of a nation.

"There are always skeptics — with a sort of 'Ah, they are never going to do it anyway' feeling — in more or less everything we do, whether it is music, anything," said former Finland player Aki Riihilahti, who is now CEO of Finnish champion HJK Helsinki. "The Finnish nature is that only when there comes an external acknowledgement of an achievement do we go and support it.

"For what this will mean, it is more important mentally than factually."

Finland has had better teams down the years, on paper anyway. They've had more celebrated players, too — think of Jari Litmanen, the silky playmaker for Ajax and Barcelona, and Sami Hyypia, the defensive stalwart at Liverpool. Yet getting to a World Cup or European Championship has been beyond them, despite more than 80 years of trying.

Finland remains, somewhat embarrassingly, the only major Nordic country to have never qualified for a major tournament.

So what's changed? The hiring of a former primary school teacher as coach has plenty to do with it.

Markku Kanerva was promoted to the job in December 2016, having previously been an assistant with the team and a former player in the 1980s and '90s. He inherited a team that had gone all of 2016 without a win and also one that was about to lose some of its best players. One midfielder, Roman Eremenko, received a two-year ban for testing positive for cocaine in 2016; another, Perparim Hetemaj, would go on to retire in early 2018 to focus on his club career.

Kanerva took a pragmatic view of the team, picking players according to their individual strengths rather than a pre-existing style and reverting to a straightforward 4-4-2 formation. His approach was based on hard work and strong defensive shape, and relied on the country's most high-profile player — striker Teemu Pukki — poaching some goals at the other end.

Kanerva also approaches coaching like he would teaching, encouraging his players to interact more, take responsibility, and learn what they have done wrong so they can improve.

The results have been striking. Finland won its group in the inaugural UEFA Nations League competition after winning its opening four qualifying games, earning promotion to League B and guaranteeing a playoff spot for Euro 2020 that might not be necessary.

In Euro 2020 qualifying, the Finns reacted to an opening loss to Italy by winning four straight Group J games without conceding a goal. After eight games, they are in second place, behind already qualified Italy but five points ahead of both Bosnia-Herzegovina and Armenia. With two teams advancing automatically, Finland needs one win from its final two qualifiers over the coming days, starting with last-place Liechtenstein, to make history.

"This is the missing piece of the puzzle," said Marco Casagrande, general secretary of the Football Association of Finland. "All the other things in our sports we have managed to do, but this is something that's still separating us from being a real sports country."

Finland's underperformance on the international stage was bought into sharp focus by Iceland, a tiny Nordic brother with a population of just 330,000, reaching both Euro 2016 and last year's World Cup.

Casagrande recalls speaking to his colleagues at the Icelandic FA, asking them: "So what's your secret?"

"It didn't help," Casagrande said, "when everyone was saying, 'You are losing all the games and Iceland is going to the Euros. Come on guys, what are you doing?'"

Iceland's rise was based on a strong collective effort combined with a sprinkle of stardust by its one standout player, Gylfi Sigurdsson, and Finland is pretty much the same.

While goalkeeper Lukas Hradecký, who plays in Germany for Bayer Leverkusen, gets plenty of plaudits, most of the spotlight falls on Pukki, the hard-working striker who has scored seven goals in qualifying and made a strong start to his first season in the Premier League with Norwich.

"Teemu Pukki is really somebody who everybody seems to love," said Riihilahti, who also played in England's top division with Crystal Palace, "and has been adopted as the Finnish savior who is bringing us to the promised land."

When Finland won the men's hockey world championship this year for the first time since 2011, there were wild celebrations in central Helsinki as champagne-swilling fans braved the cold weather by stripping off and taking a swim in the fountain and climbing on the famous Havis Amanda statue.

Expect more of the same if the country's soccer players finally make the long-awaited international breakthrough.

"Finnish people would all celebrate like a big festival," Riihilahti said. "It will go crazy."


MLB checking into report '17 Astros stole signs, broke rules

Major League Baseball has expanded its investigation into the Houston Astros after The Athletic website reported the team stole signs during home games in 2017 by using a camera positioned in center field at Minute Maid Park in downtown Houston. (AP Photo/Juan DeLeon, file)

Houston Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow speaks during a media availability during the Major League Baseball general managers annual meetings Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019, in Scottsdale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)

David Brandt

Scottsdale, Ariz. (AP) — Major League Baseball has expanded its investigation into the Houston Astros after The Athletic website reported the team stole signs during home games in 2017 by using a camera positioned in center field.

The report Tuesday quoted pitcher Mike Fiers, who played for the Astros that season, and three other unidentified people with the club. The Astros won the World Series that year — two sources told The Athletic that Houston used the system into the playoffs while another source said the system ended before the postseason.

The website said the process was started by a struggling hitter and a coach, neither of whom was identified. The camera at Minute Maid Park was connected to a television monitor in the tunnel between the Astros' dugout and clubhouse, The Athletic said, and team employees or players would communicate expected pitches by banging a trash can to signal off-speed pitches.

"I just want the game to be cleaned up a little bit because there are guys who are losing their jobs because they're going in there not knowing," Fiers told the website.

The Astros said in a statement the team "has begun an investigation in cooperation with Major League Baseball" and declined additional comment.

Houston general manager Jeff Luhnow declined to talk about specifics.

"We take the allegation seriously and we're going to look into it. If you're not following the rules, it's a serious matter," he said Tuesday at the annual GM meetings. "I'm not going to get into exactly what I knew or anybody knew at this point. So I'm just going to have to wait and see. But I'm sure there will be an appropriate time to answer that question directly."

Luhnow said he hoped the allegations wouldn't put a damper on Houston's recent run of success, which includes the team's first World Series title in 2017 and an AL pennant this season.

"Teams are competing with one another and everybody's trying to find an edge," Luhnow said. "But we all have to follow the rules and the rules are set by Major League Baseball. We all agree to follow them and if you don't there's ramifications to that. We want to follow the rules and we want to compete and win. That's what every other club does, as well."

Danny Farquhar, who pitched for the Chicago White Sox twice at Minute Maid Park in September 2017, told The Athletic of '"a banging from the dugout, almost like a bat hitting the bat rack every time a changeup signal got put down." He said after Chicago changed to more complex signals "the banging stopped."

Former Boston Red Sox pitcher Carson Smith added to the sign stealing allegations on Twitter, saying that the Astros bullpen catcher would send signs to certain batters. He added that the "Astros went to extreme measures, undoubtedly still do, and it's paid off for them."

MLB strengthened its rules against sign stealing before the 2019 season, instituting procedures attempting to ensure teams did not use video to steal signs.

"After we review this new information we will determine any necessary next steps," MLB said in a statement.

Los Angeles Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said Wednesday there was "scuttlebutt" that the Astros were stealing signs during the 2017 World Series, but "we certainly did not know anything definitive at the time." The Dodgers lost to the Astros in seven games.

"There are things that have kind of existed since the beginning of time. And then there are other things that are even more egregious and clearly across the line," he said. "And I think there are enough people involved in it, it would be pretty brazen to do certain things. And when you do, I think people are going to find out about it."

MLB already is investigating the Astros. Assistant general manager Brandon Taubman was fired for directing inappropriate comments at female reporters during a clubhouse celebration after the team beat the New York Yankees to win the AL pennant on Oct. 19. The team issued and then retracted a statement accusing a Sports Illustrated reporter of trying to "fabricate a story." Taubman was fired by the Astros on Oct. 24.

Luhnow said he didn't think the Taubman situation and the sign stealing allegations are related.

"I don't think they're tied together, but they obviously have come one after another it seems like the last few weeks," Luhnow said. "It's disappointing. If there is an issue that we need to address, we'll address it."


Panthers rally from 4 down, beat Bruins 5-4 in shootout

Florida Panthers center Mike Hoffman (68) is congratulated after his game-winning goal against Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask in a shootout during an NHL hockey game in Boston, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019. The Panthers defeated the Bruins 5-4. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

The Associated Press

Boston (AP) — Mike Hoffman scored one of four Florida goals in the third period and added the winner in a shootout as the Panthers rallied from a four-goal deficit and beat the Boston Bruins 5-4 on Tuesday night.

Keith Yandle had a goal and two assists for Florida and Sam Montembeault didn't allow a goal after replacing Sergei Bobrovsky at the start of the third period with the Panthers trailing 4-0.

Montembeault finished with 15 saves, six in overtime, and stopped Charlie McAvoy on Boston's last chance in the shootout as the Panthers completed the comeback and gave coach Joel Quenneville career victory No. 899.

Aaron Ekblad and Frank Vatrano also scored for Florida.

David Pastrnak scored his league-leading 16th goal for Boston. Joakim Nordstrom, Anders Bjork and Zdeno Chara also scored. Tuukka Rask made 25 saves.

David Krejci had two assists for Boston, which lost its fourth straight.

 

Canadiens 3, Blue Jackets 2, So

Montreal (AP) — Jonathan Drouin scored the shootout winner and Montreal rallied to beat Columbus.

Brendan Gallagher and Tomas Tatar scored third-period goals for the Canadiens (10-5-3), who trailed 1-0 after two periods. Carey Price made 33 saves. The Canadiens have won six of their last eight games (6-1-1).

Eric Robinson and Zach Werenski scored in regulation for Columbus (6-8-4). Backup goalie Elvis Merzlikins, who was recalled from the AHL on Monday, made 30 saves.

 

Rangers 3, Penguins 2, OT

New York (AP) — Kaapo Kakko scored his second goal of the game 2:36 into overtime, giving New York a victory over Pittsburgh.

Adam Fox had a goal in regulation and set up Kakko's winner as New York recovered after blowing a two-goal lead and improved to 5-1-1 in its last seven games. Alexandar Georgiev, getting the start after Henrik Lundqvist played the previous three games, finished with 30 saves.

Justin Schultz and Jared McCann scored for the short-handed Penguins, who earned at least a point for the sixth time in seven games (4-1-2). Matt Murray, making his seventh straight start and 15th in 18 games this season, stopped 24 shots.

The Penguins were without star center Sidney Crosby due to a lower body injury. The two-time MVP did not travel with the team to New York after leaving in the third period of a 3-2 shootout win over Chicago on Saturday.

 

Avalanche 4, Jets 0

Winnipeg, Manitoba (AP) — Adam Werner made 40 saves in his NHL debut and Nathan MacKinnon finished with two goals and two assists as Colorado extended its winning streak to three games.

Werner's shutout is shared with Pavel Francouz, who started but only lasted 31 seconds before getting injured.

Rookie defenseman Cale Makar opened the scoring for the Avalanche (11-5-2). Joonas Donskoi had a goal and two assists, and Matt Calvert contributed a pair of assists.

It was the first time this season the Jets (10-8-1) were shut out.

Connor Hellebuyck made 21 saves for Winnipeg, which went 2-1-1 on a four-game homestand.

 

Coyotes 3, Blues 2, So

St. Louis (AP) — Nick Schmaltz and Conor Garland scored in the shootout, and Arizona snapped St. Louis' seven-game winning streak.

Garland's power-play goal tied it 2-all at 5:58 of the third period. St. Louis native Clayton Keller had a goal and an assist against his hometown team.

Jaden Schwartz and Colton Parayko scored for the Blues, but the defending Stanley Cup champions dropped to 0-2 in shootouts this season.

Arizona improved to 3-0 in tiebreakers after winning in a shootout for the second consecutive night. The Coyotes topped Washington 4-3 on Monday.

Darcy Kuemper made 33 saves for Arizona. St. Louis goalie Jordan Binnington stopped 20 shots.

 

Canucks 5, Predators 3

Vancouver, British Columbia (AP) — Elias Pettersson scored two goals on his 21st birthday and Vancouver snapped a four-game winless streak with a win over Nashville.

Tanner Pearson also scored twice for Vancouver, his second into an empty net. Adam Gaudette also scored for the Canucks (10-6-3), who are 1-3-1 in their last five.

Vancouver scored three times on the power play.

Filip Forsberg, Mikael Granlund and Calle Jarnkrok scored for the Predators (9-6-3).

The teams combined for six goals in a wild third period.

 

Red Wings 4, Ducks 3, OT

Anaheim, Calif. (AP) — Dylan Larkin scored the tying goal during a 6-on-3 advantage with 37 seconds left in regulation, and Dennis Cholowski scored with 2:56 on the clock in overtime to send Detroit to its third straight victory.

After Ducks defensemen Brendan Guhle and Korbinian Holzer took penalties 21 seconds apart in the waning moments of regulation, Larkin scored from a sharp angle while the Red Wings had three extra skaters on the ice with their goalie pulled.

Cholowski then got his second goal of the season on a long shot past Ryan Miller, who made 32 saves for Anaheim.

Jakob Silfverberg, Josh Mahura and Cam Fowler scored in the second period for the Ducks. Ondrej Kase and Adam Henrique had two assists apiece, but Anaheim lost for the first time in seven games this season when scoring at least three goals.

Filip Hronek and Andreas Athanasiou scored in the second period for the Red Wings, and Jonathan Bernier stopped 24 shots against his former team.

 

Sharks 6, Oilers 3

San Jose, Calif. (AP) — Tomas Hertl scored and extended his point streak to four games on his 26th birthday, Evander Kane added his team-leading 11th goal of the season and San Jose beat Edmonton.

Brent Burns, Patrick Marleau, Barclay Goodrow and Timo Meier scored as San Jose matched its season-high goal total. Erik Karlsson had three assists as the Sharks (8-10-1) wrapped up a six-game homestand with their fourth straight victory after losing seven of eight.

NHL points leader Leon Draisaitl had a goal and an assist, extending his points streak to 10 games, and Zack Kassian and Sam Gagner each added a goal for Pacific Division-leading Edmonton (12-6-2).

 

Kings 3, Wild 1

Los Angeles (AP) — Anze Kopitar extended his point streak to four games, Jonathan Quick made 27 saves and Los Angeles snapped a three-game losing streak with a win over Minnesota.

Kopitar and Sean Walker each had a goal and an assist, and Jeff Carter also scored for Los Angeles. Kopitar has five points (two goals, three assists) in the past four games.

Matt Dumba scored Minnesota's lone goal and Devan Dubnyk stopped 32 shots.

More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports


Davis, James lead Lakers to best 10-game start since 2010

Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James drives on Phoenix Suns center Aron Baynes (46) in the first half during an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

The Associated Press

Phoenix (AP) — Anthony Davis had 24 points and 12 rebounds, Kyle Kuzma added 23 points and the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Phoenix Suns 123-115 on Tuesday night.

The Lakers (8-2) are off to their best 10-game start since 2010 and bounced back from a home loss to Toronto on Sunday. LeBron James added 19 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds.

Phoenix (6-4) trailed for a big chunk of the fourth quarter but pushed ahead 113-111 on Devin Booker's fast-break layup with 3:29 left. The Lakers responded with three straight 3-pointers — one from James and two more from Kuzma — to lead 120-113 and put the game out of reach.

The Suns were led by Ricky Rubio and Booker, who both scored 21 points.

 

Hawks 125, Nuggets 121

Denver (AP) — Trae Young scored 15 of his season-high 42 points in the fourth quarter and added 11 assists to lead Atlanta past Denver.

Young finished seven points shy of his career high set March 1 against Chicago last season. He was 13 of 21 from the field and finished 8 for 13 on 3-pointers.

Jabari Parker had 20 points and nine rebounds, and Alex Len scored 17 for the Hawks.

Will Barton led Denver with 21 points, Jokic had 20 and Paul Millsap added 19.

 

Pacers 111, Thunder 85

Indianapolis (AP) — T.J. Warren scored 11 of his 23 points in the third quarter to lead Indiana past Oklahoma City.

Malcolm Brogdon had 20 points, six rebounds and five assists, and Domantas Sabonis had 18 points and 16 rebounds for the surging Pacers, who have won seven of eight, including four straight.

Danilo Gallinari scored 14 points, Deonte Burton had 13 points and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 11 points and six rebounds for the Thunder, who have lost three of four and remained winless on the road.

 

76ers 98, Cavaliers 97

Philadelphia (AP) — Joel Embiid scored 27 points, including the go-ahead dunk with 13.2 seconds remaining, Philadelphia over Cleveland.

Josh Richardson added 17 points and Ben Simmons had 15 for Philadelphia, which won despite missing 30 of 38 3-point attempts.

Jordan Clarkson and Kevin Love each had 20 points to pace Cleveland. Collin Sexton added 18 points.

 

Heat 117, Pistons 108

Miami (AP) — Jimmy Butler scored 11 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter, added 13 assists and Miami wasted most of what was a 29-point lead before hanging on to beat shorthanded Detroit.

Kendrick Nunn also had 20 points for Miami, while Bam Adebayo scored 18 points and grabbed 14 rebounds for the Heat. Goran Dragic also had 18 points.

Miami is 7-3, matching the third-best 10-game start in Heat history.

Luke Kennard was 0 for 7 in the first half, but recovered to score 22 for Detroit.

 

Bulls 120, Knicks 102

Chicago (AP) — Coby White made a franchise-record seven 3-pointers in the fourth quarter, and Chicago pulled away from slumping New York.

White missed his first five shots from the field and began the final period with just four points. But the rookie guard put on a dazzling show down the stretch.

White finished with 27 points. Zach LaVine had 25 for Chicago, and Wendell Carter Jr. finished with 17 points and 12 rebounds.

New York lost for the sixth time in seven games. Marcus Morris scored 22 points for the Knicks, and RJ Barrett finished with 21 points and nine assists.

 

Jazz 119, Nets 114

Salt Lake City (AP) — Donovan Mitchell scored 30 points, Rudy Gobert had 18 points and 15 rebounds, and Utah beat Brooklyn.

Mike Conley scored 18 points, Emmanuel Mudiay added 15 and Jeff Green had 13 for the Jazz.

Utah went ahead for good after Gobert scored on back-to-back possessions in the final 90 seconds.

Kyrie Irving led the Nets with 27 points on 10-of-30 shooting.

 

Kings 107, Trail Blazers 99

Sacramento, Calif. (AP) — Bogdan Bogdanovic had 25 points and 10 assists, Nemanja Bjelica added 19 points and 12 rebounds and Sacramento won its first game since losing leading scorer De'Aaron Fox to an ankle injury, beating slumping Portland.

Bjelica helped make up for the loss of Fox. He made eight of his 14 shots and set a season-high for rebounds in his first double-double of the season. Buddy Hield added 20 points.

Damian Lillard had 27 points and CJ McCollum added 24 for the Blazers, who have lost five of six.

More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports


Seahawks knock 49ers from unbeaten ranks with 27-24 OT win

Seattle Seahawks kicker Jason Myers (5) kicks the winning field goal during overtime against the San Francisco 49ers. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) passes against Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson (99) during the second half. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

Seattle Seahawks running back Chris Carson (32) runs for a second half touchdown. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

Josh Dubow

Santa Clara, Calif. (AP) — Russell Wilson high-stepped his way down the sideline before hugging coach Pete Carroll after Jason Myers' kick split the uprights.

After a wild overtime that featured a rare Wilson interception, a missed field goal by San Francisco and a questionable decision from 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan, the Seahawks had knocked the Niners from the ranks of the unbeaten and made sure the NFC West would remain tight down the stretch.

Myers kicked a 42-yard field goal after Chase McLaughlin missed a kick earlier in overtime, and the Seahawks handed the San Francisco 49ers their first loss with a 27-24 victory on Monday night.

"That was the craziest game I've ever been a part of," Wilson said.

Myers gave Seattle (8-2) its second straight overtime win after Wilson got the Seahawks into position with an 18-yard scramble on third-and-3. After being iced by a timeout, Myers delivered one week after missing two field goals and an extra point, moving Seattle on the heels of San Francisco (8-1) in the NFC West.

"We practice these situations every day," left tackle Duane Brown said. "Russell Wilson is the best quarterback in the league. When you have him under center, I don't care how much time is on the clock. We feel like we have a chance."

The Seahawks blew an opportunity to win the game on the opening possession of overtime when Wilson was intercepted at the 4 by Dre Greenlaw.

It was Wilson's second interception of the season and just the second red-zone interception in overtime in the last 25 years, according to STATS, with Jacoby Brissett having the other in 2017 against San Francisco.

Greenlaw returned it 47 yards to the Seattle 49 and the Niners moved the ball 20 yards before McLaughlin missed badly to the left on a 47-yard attempt. McLaughlin had made his first three field goals after being signed earlier in the week when Robbie Gould went down with a quadriceps injury.

"Just rushed it a little bit, hit it a little high and unfortunately missed it," McLaughlin said.

The teams then traded punts, the Seahawks took over at their 36 with 1:25 remaining after Jimmy Garoppolo threw three straight incompletions as San Francisco burned only 14 seconds off the clock with Seattle out of timeouts.

"Definitely wish we had taken more time off the clock, but was counting on us catching one of those balls," Shanahan said.

After the defenses dominated much of the game with each team scoring a defensive touchdown and generating three takeaways apiece in regulation, the quarterbacks traded late drives for field goals that set the stage for overtime.

Wilson drove the Seahawks 47 yards before Chris Carson was stuffed on third-and-1, leading to a 46-yard field goal by Myers with 1:45 to play.

Garoppolo and the Niners took over from there and used short passes to move the ball down to the 29 where McLaughlin kicked a 47-yard field goal with 1 second left to tie it at 24.

Making a Point

The Seahawks shut down San Francisco's running game, allowing only 3.2 yards per carry and forced Garoppolo into an off night with his receivers contributing with several drops. Garoppolo finished 24 for 48 for 248 yards, one touchdown and one interception.

He was sacked five times and missed injured tight end George Kittle and Emmanuel Sanders, who left in the first quarter with a rib injury.

"We wanted to prove we were the best defense on the field today," Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner said. "We understood what people were thinking because of the last two weeks. We felt like had something to prove."

Clowney's Day

Jadeveon Clowney had his biggest impact since joining Seattle this season. He returned a fumble 10 yards for the Seahawks' first touchdown, set up another with a strip sack and had five quarterback hits on the day.

Bone Head Play

The 49ers got a defensive score of their own in the fourth quarter. K'Waun Williams sacked Wilson, knocking the ball loose to right tackle Germain Ifedi. Ifedi tried to run with the ball but Fred Warner knocked it loose again and DeForest Buckner ran it in 12 yards for the score.

"What was he thinking? He thought he was going to score," coach Pete Carroll said.

Big Play

The Seahawks were poised to take the lead into halftime when D.K. Metcalf took a short pass from Wilson and ran it inside the 5. But as he was fighting for more yardage, safety Jaquiski Tartt ripped it out of his hands at the 2-yard line for an impressive fumble recovery.

Debut Performances

Diggs started in his first game for Seattle since being acquired last month in a trade from Detroit.

Receiver Josh Gordon also made his Seahawks debut after being claimed off waivers last week from New England. He caught a 13-yard pass to convert a third down on the late field-goal drive in the fourth quarter and another to convert a third down in overtime.

Injuries

Seahawks: WR Tyler Lockett left with a bruised leg and might have to stay in the Bay Area overnight. TE Luke Willson left with a hamstring injury.

49ers: Sanders (ribs) left in the first quarter. DT D.J. Jones was sidelined later in the first half with a groin injury. LB Azeez Al-Shaair left with a concussion in the third quarter. RB Matt Breida left in the second half with an ankle injury. DL Ronald Blair left the game with a knee injury.

Up Next

Seahawks: Week off before visiting Philadelphia on Nov. 24.

49ers: Host Arizona on Sunday.


Top teams in good shape as Euro qualifying reaches climax

Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo during the Champions League Group D soccer match between Lokomotiv Moscow and Juventus at the Lokomotiv Stadium in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

Steve Douglas

With the Netherlands missing out on Euro 2016 and Italy absent from the World Cup in 2018, some of Europe's traditional soccer powers have surprisingly failed to advance to recent major international tournaments.

Don't expect any big shocks when qualification for next year's European Championship wraps up over the coming days.

Six teams — Belgium, Spain, Italy, Poland, Russia and Ukraine — have already booked their places in the tournament and the remaining 14 automatic qualifiers will be determined after the final group games.

World champion France, European champion Portugal, and heavyweights such as Germany, England and the Netherlands are in good shape to finish in the top two in their respective groups, ensuring spots in the Europe-wide finals taking place in June and July.

There are big opportunities for Europe's so-called lesser soccer nations, too. Finland, for example, needs only to beat Liechtenstein to qualify for its first major tournament.

France, the World Cup winner last year, is tied on points with Turkey in Group H and will secure a top-two finish by beating Moldova on Thursday. In case of an upset in that game in Paris, the French have another shot at qualification at Albania on Sunday.

Portugal, led by Cristiano Ronaldo, is guaranteed to advance in the defense of its title with wins over Lithuania at home and Luxembourg away — the bottom two teams in Group B.

England needs one win from its final two games — at home to Montenegro on Thursday and away to Kosovo on Sunday — to top Group A.

And in Group C, Germany and the Netherlands are tied on points and need a maximum of four points from their final two qualifiers. Both have to play Northern Ireland, which is three points behind in third place.

The last four qualifying spots for the 24-team Euros will be decided in the playoffs in March.

Ronaldo's Challenge

Could Cristiano Ronaldo fail to qualify for a major tournament?

UEFA would hate to see the Portugal star miss out, but his team has lacked a spark in qualifying and is eight points off Group B leader Ukraine.

Portugal is favored to beat Lithuania on Thursday and Luxembourg on Sunday to secure second place.

Still, there's little margin for error. Dropped points could allow Serbia to overtake, forcing Portugal into the playoffs.

England Landmark

England will be playing its 1,000th men's international in the match against Montenegro and the occasion will be marked in a number of ways, including recognizing the notable contributions of former players and managers. Players will wear individual "legacy numbers" on their jerseys.

England manager Gareth Southgate is hoping a line can be drawn following scenes last month when his players were racially abused by some Bulgaria fans during England's 6-0 win in Sofia. The game was stopped on two occasions by the referee. England's match away to Montenegro in March was also marred by racist chanting toward England's black players, notably Raheem Sterling.

"The players will want to move on, really," Southgate said. "I think, for all of them, they dealt with it brilliantly and it would be wrong not to discuss it at all but I know that they want to get on with the football."

Kosovo, which was accepted as a member of UEFA and FIFA only in 2016, is third in the group and could secure automatic qualification with a win at the Czech Republic on Thursday and a draw against England.

Finally Finland?

Finland is the only Nordic team never to have qualified for a World Cup or a European Championship. That could all change this week.

The Finns are second in Group J, five points clear of both Armenia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, and will join Italy in advancing to the finals with a win at home against last-placed Liechtenstein on Friday or if Bosnia fails to beat the Italians. Finland's second chance, if needed, comes against Greece on Monday.

Finland is coached by a primary school teacher, Markku Kanerva, who led the country to a first ever European Under-21 Championship in 2009 and is impressing with the senior team a decade on.

Teemu Pukki has seven goals in qualifying as the team looks to go further than it ever did with past greats such as Sami Hyypia and Jari Litmanen.

 Croatia at risk

Croatia is finding European qualifying harder than last year's World Cup.

The Croatians lead the evenly matched Group E but if they lose to Slovakia on Saturday the World Cup finalists could end up relying on other results to go their way.

Another team in a fight to qualify is Switzerland, which is third in Group D behind Ireland and Denmark, but is a big favorite against Gibraltar.

 Playoff Shootout

The playoffs offer a last chance for unsuccessful teams, but it's a complex process.

Sixteen teams who didn't qualify automatically will be ranked according to their divisions from the 2018 Nations League and put into four single-elimination brackets.

At the bottom end, there's the League D playoff, which is guaranteed to hand one team its debut at a major championship. Georgia and Belarus have secured a place in that playoff mini-tournament and will likely be joined by Kosovo and North Macedonia.

The highest division almost certainly won't have enough unqualified teams to make a four-team bracket, so will recruit extras from lower tiers. That could hand League A's Iceland a fortunate draw with League C teams such as Bulgaria and Israel. (AP)


Walker scores 29 to lead Celtics past Mavericks 116-106

Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker (8) drives to the basket against Dallas Mavericks guard Seth Curry (30) during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game in Boston, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

The Associated Press

Boston (AP) — Kemba Walker made a trio of key 3-pointers in the fourth quarter and finished with 29 points, Jaylen Brown added 25 points and 11 rebounds, and Boston beat the Dallas Mavericks 116-106 Monday night in the Celtics' first game since Gordon Hayward had surgery on his broken left hand.

Marcus Smart scored 17 points, Daniel Theis chipped in with 11 and Brad Wanamaker had 10 for Boston, which won its eighth straight game since a season-opening loss at Philadelphia.

Jayson Tatum shot 1 for 18 from the field and scored only five points for the Celtics.

Luka Doncic led the Mavericks (6-4) with 34 points, nine assists and six rebounds. Kristaps Porzingis scored just four points on 1-of-11 shooting.

The Celtics released a statement during the opening quarter that said Hayward had surgery Monday to repair a fracture in his non-shooting hand. He was injured during their previous game in San Antonio when he collided with LaMarcus Aldridge as the Spurs' big man set a screen.

 

Clippers 98, Raptors 88

Los Angeles (AP) — Lou Williams scored 21 points, Kawhi Leonard just missed a triple-double in his first game against his former team and Los Angeles beat the defending NBA champion Toronto Raptors.

Leonard finished with 12 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists to go with nine turnovers. Last season, he led the Raptors to their first championship, averaging 30.5 points and 9.1 rebounds in 24 postseason games to earn his second Finals MVP honor.

Pascal Siakam had 16 points and 10 rebounds for the injury-depleted Raptors, who had their three-game winning streak snapped in the second game of a back-to-back.

The Clippers shot just 37% but dominated the boards 66-38, led by 12 each from Patrick Beverley and JaMychal Green.

 

Jazz 122, Warriors 108

San Francisco (AP) — Rudy Gobert had 25 points and 14 rebounds as Utah topped Golden State.

Donovan Mitchell added 23 points and Mike Conley scored 22 for the Jazz, who improved to 7-3.

The injury-ravaged Warriors fell to an NBA-worst 2-9 and their frustrations boiled over in the fourth quarter. Draymond Green, back after missing five games with a torn finger ligament, earned back-to-back technicals and an ejection for arguing a blocking call with 8:28 left.

Less than a minute later, coach Steve Kerr was given a technical after arguing a call.

D'Angelo Russell scored 33 points for Golden State, his fourth consecutive game of 30 or more.

 

Rockets 122, Pelicans 116

New Orleans (AP) — James Harden scored 39 points, including 13 straight in the fourth quarter, and Houston beat short-handed New Orleans.

Russell Westbrook had 26 points and Clint Capela added 11 points and 20 rebounds to help the Rockets to their fourth straight win.

JJ Redick had 24 points, Josh Hart scored 19, and Jrue Holiday added 18 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds for the Pelicans, who played without leading scorer Brandon Ingram due to a sore right knee.

New Orleans pulled to 97-93 on a four-point play by Redick before Harden's scoring burst in a 2:10 span gave the Rockets a 110-93 lead with 5:20 left.

 

Grizzlies 113, Spurs 109

San Antonio (AP) — Jaren Jackson Jr. had 24 points and Memphis put a damper on Tony Parker's jersey retirement by beating San Antonio.

Parker's uniform No. 9 was lifted to the rafters alongside fellow Big Three members Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili following the game. They led San Antonio to four of its five championships and have the most wins (541) of any trio in NBA history.

Jackson was involved in two pivotal plays with the Grizzlies up 111-109 in the final minute. His 3-pointer with 25.5 seconds left was overturned when replays determined he was out of bounds. Jackson then blocked DeMar DeRozan's ensuing drive to maintain Memphis' two-point advantage.

Memphis won a coach's challenge that overturned a foul that would have put DeRozan on the line with the Spurs trailing 113-109.

Dillon Brooks had 21 points and Jonas Valanciunas added 18 points and 12 rebounds for Memphis, which had lost two straight and five of six.

LaMarcus Aldridge scored 19 points, Rudy Gay added 18 and DeRozan had 12 as San Antonio took its second consecutive home loss.

 

Timberwolves 120, Pistons 114

Detroit (AP) — Andrew Wiggins scored 33 points and Minnesota spoiled Blake Griffin's return from injury, beating Detroit.

Griffin played for the first time this season, coming back from hamstring and knee issues. Derrick Rose also returned to the Pistons lineup from a strained hamstring, but both he and Griffin played limited minutes.

Griffin scored 19 points and Rose had just six.

Karl-Anthony Towns scored 25 for the Timberwolves, who led by 19 in the third quarter and snapped an eight-game losing streak to the Pistons.

A 3-pointer by Detroit's Tony Snell made it 109-104, but Towns drew a double team at the other end and passed to an open Wiggins, whose 3-pointer restored the lead to eight.

Luke Kennard led the Pistons with 25 points.


Munich to host multi-sport European Championships in 2022

Munich (AP) — Munich has been awarded the 2022 edition of the multi-sport European Championships, but swimming isn't confirmed on the program.

The announcement on Tuesday means the event returns to Germany after Berlin hosted the athletics portion of the inaugural championships in 2018, though most other sports were held in the Scottish city of Glasgow.

Athletics, cycling, golf, gymnastics, rowing and triathlon are all confirmed.

European Championships Management, which organizes the event, said aquatic events like swimming and diving are out because the European swim federation, known as LEN, didn't feel Munich's facilities were suitable.

"LEN have taken the decision to look elsewhere," the ECM said, but added the other sports might consider allowing LEN to host its championships in parallel somewhere else as athletics did last year.

"The integration of LEN would be considered. The joint city host format worked in 2018."

LEN, which committed "in principle" to 2022 in an announcement from 2016, didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

The 2022 events will use the Olympic Park in Munich 50 years after the city held the 1972 Olympics.

"Once again we have the opportunity to present Germany as a sport-loving and hospitable country," German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said in a statement.

The championships were created by European sports federations keen to attract more attention to their events by scheduling them together with a single TV rights package.

It also helps federations resist control by the European Olympic Committees, which launched their own multi-sport European Games in 2015.


McDavid scores hat trick, reaches 400 points in Edmonton win

Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid scores past Anaheim Ducks goaltender John Gibson during the third period of an NHL hockey game in Anaheim, Calif., Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

Joe Reedy

Anaheim, Calif. (AP) — Although Connor McDavid makes amazing goals look routine, the Edmonton Oilers' star had a big milestone night on Sunday.

The All-Star center had a hat trick and became the eighth NHL player to record 400 points before his 23rd birthday in the Oilers' 6-2 win over the Anaheim Ducks.

It was the fifth hat trick of McDavid's career and his first since Feb. 18, 2018, against Colorado. He also became the 13th player in league history to reach 400 points in 306 or fewer games.

"It's good. It helps when you get a win as well," said McDavid, who is tied for second in the league in scoring with 30 points (11 goals, 19 assists). "It's good to shoot a couple and they were able to go in the net."

McDavid was one of five Oilers to have a multi-point night. Leon Draisaitl had four assists to move into the NHL scoring lead with 34 points (14 goals, 20 assists).

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins also scored twice for the Oilers, who have won four of their last six. Zack Kassian had a goal and two assists and Oscar Klefbom had a pair of assists.

"Tonight we were solid all the way through and capitalized on opportunities," coach Dave Tippett said.

Mikko Koskinen made 31 saves for his seventh win in 10 games. Four of the saves came when Edmonton was short handed as it killed off all five Anaheim power-play opportunities.

The Oilers were 2 for 5 on the power play.

"Offense is something that hasn't come easy to us as a group, but it is starting to pick up," McDavid said. "I thought the penalty killing made the difference tonight."

Rickard Rakell and Max Jones scored for Anaheim and John Gibson stopped 25 shots. The six goals Gibson allowed tied a career-worst.

"We said they were an opportunistic team. They were. We said they were good on the power play. They were. We got outplayed," Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf said.

McDavid reached the 400-point milestone with 9:06 remaining in the first period when his wrist shot beat Gibson to give the Oilers a 2-1 lead.

His second goal ended up being highlight worthy as he eluded Anaheim's Jakob Silfverberg, momentarily lost his balanced and then deked Gibson to put a wrist shot past his stick side.

"Coming out of the zone, I tried to put a play on the net. I'm always looking for the pass, probably too much," McDavid said.

McDavid then completed the hat trick with his fourth power-play goal of the season with 6:35 remaining. The fans then pelted the Honda Center ice with hats that they received as part of a Veterans Day giveaway.

Nugent-Hopkins notched the 17th multi-goal game after coming in with only one goal. He put the Oilers on the board 88 seconds into the game when he took advantage of a turnover behind the Anaheim net and jammed it past Gibson's short side. Edmonton's James Neal pressured Anaheim's Korbinian Holzer to turn it over, allowing Nugent-Hopkins to take advantage for his second goal of the season.

He then added a power-play goal at 7:45 of the second period with a snap shot the found the upper left corner of the net.

Rakell tied it at one when he was able when he lifted a backhand over Koskinen's shoulder for his fifth of the year. Jakob Silfverberg was able to gain possession behind the net and fed it to a wide-open Rakell, who was playing in his 400th NHL game.

Steel got his first goal of the season early in the third with a wrist shot that beat Kosskinen on his stick side.


Analysis: Kicking woes cost several teams in NFL's Week 10

Tennessee Titans defensive back Joshua Kalu (46) blocks a 52-yard field goal attempt by Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker (7) on the final play of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn. The Titans won 35-32. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)

Arnie Stapleton

Adam Vinatieri's season-long struggles persisted and quick healer Patrick Mahomes was kneecapped by Kansas City's ugly special teams in a Week 10 slate where seven games featured errant extra points or field goal flubs and follies.

Kicking wasn't one of the challenges the Indianapolis Colts expected to face when Andrew Luck retired last summer, not with the NFL's all-time leading scorer around. But Vinatieri has missed 11 kicks, including six extra points.

His latest miss meant Indy needed to score a touchdown after reaching the Dolphins' 16-yard line trailing 16-10 Sunday, but the Colts were stopped at the 8 on fourth down in the final minute and Indy fell to 5-4.

Vinatieri has missed kicks in all four of those losses.

He is 14 for 20 on PATs, a 70% clip that would be the worst in NFL history for a kicker with at least that many attempts.

Colts coach Frank Reich said that while he hasn't had any discussions with general manager Chris Ballard about Vinatieri's status with the team, "everybody is held accountable" and "there is an expectation" for better accuracy.

The league's reigning MVP, Mahomes, returned much sooner than expected from a gruesome right knee injury and threw for a season-best 446 yards and three touchdowns at Tennessee just 3½ weeks after dislocating his right kneecap in Denver.

In a game that featured missed PATs by both teams, the Chiefs led 29-20 in the closing minutes but couldn't reach the end zone late and were forced to attempt three field goals in the final 3:19. Harrison Butker's 39-yarder gave K.C. a 32-27 lead.

The Chiefs had the chance to salt away the victory when they lined up facing third-and-2 at the Tennessee 29-yard line with 1:36 remaining, but Mahomes was sacked and Butker trotted out for a 47-yard try that would give K.C. an eight-point cushion.

But snapper James Winchester delivered the ball sooner than holder Dustin Colquitt was expecting and Colquitt chucked the ball away.

"I looked back, Dustin was looking forward, then I started to see him look back, but I had already started the snap," Winchester said.

The intentional grounding call on Colquitt gave the Titans the ball at their 39 and it took them just three plays to score the go-ahead touchdown on Ryan Tannehill's 23-yard scoring throw to Adam Humphries with 23 seconds left.

Mecole Hardman returned the ensuing squib kick to the 38 and Mahomes put the Chiefs in position for a game-tying field goal with a 23-yard pass to Demarcus Robinson with 10 seconds left and a 5-yard pass to Robinson before Butker came out again with 3 seconds left for a 52-yard attempt to force overtime.

Joshua Kalu raced around from Butker's right and got his left hand on the ball for the block.

"I have no idea what happened on that last one," Winchester said.

The Week 10 follies began with Raiders kicker Daniel Carlson missing an extra point with 66 seconds remaining that left Oakland clinging to a 26-24 lead over the Chargers on Thursday night. But Philip Rivers missed his last six passes before throwing an interception with 20 seconds left.

Other missed that loomed large:

— Steve Hauschka missed a 34-yard field goal with 16 seconds left in the first half and a 53-yarder with 17 seconds left in the fourth quarter of Buffalo's 19-16 loss to Cleveland.

— The Giants missed a 2-point try and an extra point in their 34-27 loss to the Jets.

— The Rams missed a field goal in their 17-12 loss at Pittsburgh that had them trying to go for a touchdown in the final minute instead of a field goal attempt.

— And Dallas missed a field goal that had them trying a "Hail Mary" from midfield at the end of their 28-24 loss to Minnesota Vikings

One game that didn't feature a missed kick was Green Bay's 24-16 win over Carolina at snowy Lambeau Field, but it did feature a curious call: going for 2 after Christian McCaffrey found the end zone on a 3-yard run with 11:58 remaining. Instead of kicking an extra point — the snow wasn't sticking at that point — Ron Rivera elected to go for 2 and Kyle Allen's throw to Greg Olsen fell incomplete.

"That was purely analytics, 100 percent," Rivera said. "The thing is, if you get it there and you score at the end, then you're kicking to win the game. If you don't get it there, you get an opportunity to go for two again, which we felt pretty good about the play we had called the first time and we felt good about having the second one. It most certainly was just following the analytics of it."

McCaffrey was stopped inches short on the game's final play, the second time this season he was denied just shy of the goal line with the game on line.


US women beat Costa Rica 6-0 in 2019 finale

U.S. midfielder Julie Ertz (8) attempts a shot on goal off a corner kick, against Costa Rica defender Lixy Rodriguez (12) during the first half of an international friendly soccer match Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

Jeff Elliott

Jacksonville, Fla. (AP) — The U.S. women's soccer team closed out the year with a one-sided victory over Costa Rica, giving the Americans 20 wins in 2019. It was the second win in two matches for new coach Vlatko Andonovski.

Carli Lloyd and Morgan Brian scored in the first 10 minutes and Lynn Williams came off the bench to add a pair of second-half goals in the United States' 6-0 victory over Costa Rica on Sunday night at TIAA Bank Field. The U.S. was 20-1-3 in 2019, finishing with a 23-match unbeaten streak.

Lloyd started the scoring in the fourth minute, taking a long pass from Rose Lavelle and drilling a shot from the left side of the box past goalkeeper Noelia Bermudez. Lloyd scored twice in a 3-2 victory over Sweden on Thursday night.

Brian added a goal in the 10th minute, taking Lavelle's pass and sending a scorching shot into the corner of the net. It was especially gratifying for Brian, who grew up in nearby St. Simons Island, Georgia, and conducts camps in the Jacksonville area during the offseason.

"It means a lot to score a goal here," Brian said. "It's been a really long year and a great year and to cap it off here in Jacksonville with a goal is great. Growing up here and coming here in front of family and friends and be able to score a goal is really great. I had over 30 friends and family members here.

"I don't have a home here anymore but I come back in the offseason to train and to play so this is my soccer home. Yes, my heart is still here."

Andonovski made several substitutions at halftime and it quickly paid dividends.

Williams converted in the 50th minute off a pass from Tobin Heath. Williams added a second goal in the 68th minute, taking an assist from Jessica McDonald. Williams narrowly missed a hat trick when her point-blank shot was caught by Bermudez late in the game.

Williams said she tries to take advantage of her playing time on the field.

"Any time I get a chance on the field at all, it's a blessing," Williams said. "If my role is to come off the bench and provide a spark, I'll take it. I'm always going to want to start but I know I have a lot of work to put in and I view it as I have a lot to learn wherever they play me."

That's what Andonovski is looking for in Williams' contribution coming off the bench.

"Lynn did what she's supposed to do — come off the bench and provide a spark," the U.S. coach said. "She stretched the lines for us. Ultimately, she did what every 9 is supposed to do, score goals for us. She checked all the boxes. It's very comforting and nice to see her doing well in this environment and growing as a player."

Christen Press also added a second-half goal and the team's final goal was a Costa Rica own goal.

The closest Costa Rica came to scoring was when Melissa Herrera hit the cross bar on a shot in the 62nd minute and teammate Priscilla Chinchilla did the same in the 76th minute.

Costa Rica, ranked 38th in the world, has never beaten a USA team, having lost 15 consecutive matches. The next time the two teams will meet will be on February 3, 2020 when they play in Houston in the final Group A game in Olympic qualifying.

Even with the lopsided win, Andonovski said there are areas that the U.S. must improve on in the months ahead.

"I don't want to sound arrogant by any means, but there are things we can grow, that's the coach in me," he said. "Regardless of how well we do, we can always find clips where we can do better in the future. But what is great about this team is that they want to get better. They don't want to settle for where they are now.

"If you ask me about the result, I'm extremely happy with the result, but we do have to get better."


Borussia Dortmund hurting after heavy loss in Munich

Bayern's David Alaba, front right, and Bayern's Joshua Kimmich, left, celebrate after Bayern's Robert Lewandowski scores his side's opening goal during the German Bundesliga soccer match between FC Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, in Munich, Germany, Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

Ciarán Fahey

Berlin (AP) — Borussia Dortmund is hurting again after another heavy Bundesliga defeat in Munich.

Dortmund lost 4-0 in the "der Klassiker" against rival Bayern Munich on Saturday, being fortunate not to concede more goals.

Dortmund's lackluster performance has been criticized following sporting director Michael Zorc's call for a "men's soccer" type of performance in the buildup for the game. Instead, Dortmund delivered what Kicker magazine called "scaredy-cat soccer."

"A lot of our players just weren't there today," Dortmund coach Lucien Favre said. "That's the biggest disappointment."

Zorc was even more critical of the performance.

"That wasn't football at all, to be honest," he said. "Bayern were on top and better in every respect. Bayern completely took over after 15 minutes and we were second-best at everything. That's why Bayern also deserved to win by this score."

It was Dortmund's fifth consecutive heavy defeat in Munich. It lost 5-0 in April, 6-0 last year, 4-1 in 2017 and 5-1 in 2015. In its last six games in Munich, Dortmund has been outscored 26-3.

"It was beautiful that the talk before the game was of men's football," said Bayern forward Thomas Müller, who set up two goals. "As I'm a bit older now, 30, I know that it gives you a bit extra inspiration. The way I see it, that's why we are German champions seven times in a row. It's always wonderful when the Dortmunders come to Munich and we play like we did today."

Bayern appeared to be in crisis after firing coach Niko Kovac following the team' 5-1 loss at Eintracht Frankfurt — its heaviest league defeat in over 10 years.

But Kovac's dismissal seems to have come as a relief to some players, and interim coach Hansi Flick has now overseen two wins from two competitive games, with no goals conceded. Bayern reached the last 16 of the Champions League with a 2-0 win over Olympiakos on Wednesday.

Bayern's will to win on Saturday contrasted sharply with Dortmund's, which will be under increased pressure after it appeared to have turned a corner following a series of questionable results.

Dortmund had strung together three consecutive wins — over league leader Borussia Mönchengladbach in the German Cup, previously unbeaten Wolfsburg in the league, and Inter Milan in the Champions League, when the team displayed great morale to come back from two goals down and win 3-2.

But there was none of that in Munich on Saturday, and Favre and his superiors are left wondering how to consistently get the best from the talented but fallible team.

"We expected a lot from this game," Zorc said. "Then we delivered what is basically a non-performance. I'm disappointed. You can't even say that it was just a lack of challenges. We were also bad when we had the ball, we gave it away and simply made it too easy for Bayern. That was a huge disappointment."


No. 1 LSU holds off No. 2 Alabama 46-41

LSU running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (22) dives over Alabama's Raekwon Davis (99) and Markail Benton (36) to score a touchdown in the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)

The Associated Press

Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP) — Joe Burrow passed for 393 yards and three touchdowns and No. 1 LSU snapped an eight-game losing streak to No. 2 Alabama with a 46-41 victory Saturday.

The Tigers (9-0, 5-0 Southeastern Conference, No. 2 CFP) are no longer second fiddle in the SEC West, or maybe in the playoff rankings. And Burrow stamped himself as the Heisman Trophy front-runner with a gutty performance when he answered every challenge from 'Bama.

The Crimson Tide (8-1, 5-1, No. 3 CFP) rallied from a 33-13 halftime deficit to three times to pull within a touchdown in the fourth quarter.

The showdown lived up to its billing as a duel between two high-powered offenses and star quarterbacks with President Donald Trump attending. Tua Tagovailoa launched an 85-yard touchdown pass to DeVonta Smith with 1:21 left after the Tigers' own scoring march.

Justin Jefferson recovered the onside kick and LSU ran out the clock.

Burrow completed 31 of 39 passes and ran for 64 yards. Clyde Edwards Helaire ran for three touchdowns and caught a scoring pass.

Tagovailoa, 20 days removed from ankle surgery, was 21 of 40 for 418 yards and four touchdowns with an interception and a fumble.

 

No. 13 Minnesota 31, No. 5 Penn State 26

Minneapolis (AP) — Minnesota's Jordan Howden picked off Sean Clifford's pass in the end zone with 1:01 left, the third interception thrown by Penn State's quarterback, and the Gophers beat the Nittany Lions for their first victory over a top-five team in 20 years.

Tanner Morgan passed for 339 yards and three touchdowns to direct a dismantling of Penn State's staunch defense. Minnesota (9-0, 6-0, No. 17 CFP) not only remained undefeated, but stayed on track for its first trip to the Big Ten championship game.

The first sellout crowd for the Gophers at home in four years swarmed the field after the clock ran out, reveling in the biggest step forward yet under coach P.J. Fleck in his third season. The Gophers scrambled the College Football Playoff picture, too, after Penn State (8-1, 5-1, No. 4 CFP) emerged with a top-four spot in the first edition of the rankings.

Rashod Bateman got the Gophers going with a 66-yard score on their first possession and finished with seven catches for 203 yards, the second-most in program history. Tyler Johnson had seven receptions for 104 yards and a touchdown, too, as Minnesota made enough early gains to hold up during the late rally.

Clifford went 23 for 43 for 340 yards and one score.

Antoine Winfield Jr. had the first two picks in the first half, matching the FBS lead and setting the Minnesota record with seven on the season. Both were inside the 10.

 

No. 9 Oklahoma 42, Iowa State 41

Norman, Okla. (AP) — Parnell Motley intercepted Brock Purdy's two-point conversion pass with 24 seconds left and Oklahoma held off Iowa State.

Iowa State coach Matt Campbell went for the victory on the two-point try after Charlie Kolar caught a 13-yard touchdown pass to pull the Cyclones — down 42-21 in the second half — within one.

Jalen Hurts passed for 273 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 68 yards and two more scores for the Sooners (8-1, 5-1 Big 12, No. 9 CFP).

CeeDee Lamb had 167 yards and two touchdowns receiving and Kennedy Brooks ran for a season-high 132 yards to help Oklahoma bounce back from a loss to Kansas State two weeks ago. Oklahoma extended its November winning streak to 18 games and set up a showdown at league-leading Baylor next week.

Purdy passed for 282 yards and five touchdowns and Breece Hall rushed for 110 yards for the Cyclones (5-4, 3-3)

 

No. 3 Ohio State 73, Maryland 14

Columbus, Ohio (AP) — Justin Fields threw for three touchdowns and ran for another in the first half and Ohio State hardly missed suspended defensive star Chase Young.

A team that gave the Buckeyes (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten, CFP No. 1) headaches last season was no trouble this time, even without the fierce pass rushing of Young. The preseason All-American was suspended Friday while Ohio State investigates a possible NCAA violation involving a loan.

J.K. Dobbins rushed for 90 yards and two touchdowns as the Buckeyes built a 42-0 halftime lead and the backups added to it in the second half. Fields tossed touchdown passes to Binjimen Victor, K.J. Hill and Chris Olave before taking a seat in the second half. His backup, Chris Chugunov threw another one in the third quarter. Ohio State piled up 705 yards of offense and 40 first downs.

Maryland dropped to 1-6 in the Big Ten and 3-7 overall.

 

No. 4 Clemson 55, North Carolina State 10

Raleigh, N.C. (AP) — Trevor Lawrence threw for two scores and ran for another in a dominating first quarter and Clemson routed North Carolina State to wrap a trip to Atlantic Coast Conference title game.

The reigning national champion Tigers learned this week that they were on the outside looking in for the first rankings for the four-team College Football Playoff. Yet coach Dabo Swinney had said the Tigers (10-0, 7-0, No. 5 CFP) were in a "good spot" and needed to focus instead on finishing strong.

Starting that way was enough against the Wolfpack (4-5, 1-4) as Clemson extended its school-record winning streak to 25 games. By halftime, Clemson led 42-0.

That first half was highlighted by 6-foot-4, 330-pound left guard John Simpson taking a goal-line handoff and plowing in for a 1-yard touchdown. Near the end of the game, Clemson added a 1-yard scoring run with 11 seconds left before letting linebacker James Skalski unsuccessfully kick the extra point.

 

No. 6 Georgia 27, Missouri 0

Athens, Ga. (AP) — Jake Fromm threw two touchdown passes to George Pickens and Georgia posted its third shutout, dominating a Missouri offense missing two of its biggest playmakers.

Georgia (8-1, 5-1 Southeastern Conference, No. 6 College Football Playoff) moved closer to its third straight berth in the SEC championship game. The Bulldogs can clinch the SEC East by beating No. 12 Auburn next week. Missouri (5-4, 2-3) fell to 0-4 in road games with its third straight loss. Quarterback Kelly Bryant and leading receiver Johnathon Johnson did not play.

Fromm capped Georgia's opening drive with a 25-yard scoring pass to Pickens. The freshman also made a leaping grab for an 18-yard touchdown catch in the fourth quarter.

 

No. 11 Baylor 29, Tcu 23, 3ot

Fort Worth, Texas (AP) — Denzel Mims made a leaping 4-yard touchdown catch in the third overtime for Baylor, capping another comeback victory that kept the Bears undefeated.

Charlie Brewer also threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to Mims on fourth down in the second overtime to extend the game. Brewer had a 3-yard scoring run in the first overtime.

The Bears (9-0, 6-0 Big 12) finally won on Grayland Arnold's interception of Max Duggan's fourth-down pass in the end zone.

Baylor forced overtime when John Mayers kicked a 51-yard field goal with 36 seconds left in regulation. The ball just cleared the crossbar to tie it at 9. TCU (4-5, 2-4) led 9-0 after Jonathan Song made two field goals at the end of the first half.

 

No. 15 Notre Dame 38, Duke 7

Durham, N.C. (AP) — Ian Book rushed for a career-best 139 yards and threw four touchdown passes for Notre Dame.

Book finished 18 of 32 for 181 yards passing, Chris Finke caught touchdown passes of 18 and 6 yards, and Chase Claypool and George Takacs also had short scoring catches.

C'Bo Flemister rushed 2 yards for a TD for the Fighting Irish (7-2, No. 15 CFP). In winning their second straight and fifth in six games, they rolled up 469 total yards, led 21-0 before the Blue Devils picked up their second first down and kept them at bay the rest of the way.

Quentin Harris was 16 of 28 for 102 yards for Duke (4-5) with a 29-yard touchdown pass to Aaron Young late in the second quarter. The Blue Devils have lost three straight and four of five since starting 3-1.

 

No. 16 Wisconsin 24, No. 18 Iowa 22

Madison, Wis. (AP) — Jonathan Taylor rushed for a season-high 250 yards and Danny Davis ran for a touchdown and caught a scoring pass for Wisconsin.

Taylor became the first running back this season to rush for more than 100 yards against Iowa as Wisconsin (7-2, 4-2 Big Ten, No. 13 College Football Playoff) held on to the Heartland Trophy, given each year to the winner of this game. Wisconsin has beaten Iowa four straight times.

Quintez Cephus caught five passes for 94 yards and a score to help Wisconsin stay in contention for the Big Ten West crown. Nate Stanley passed for 208 yards and two TDs for Iowa (6-3, 3-3, No. 18 CFP).

 

No. 17 Cincinnati 48, Connecticut 3

Cincinnati (AP) — Desmond Ridder threw for a pair of touchdowns and Michael Warren II ran for two more scores during a dominant opening half, and Cincinnati remained the only unbeaten team in American Athletic play.

The Bearcats (8-1, 5-0) retained the inside track for the conference title by ending their recent trend of slow starts. They led 38-0 at halftime against the conference's lowliest team.

UConn (2-8, 0-6) had two players ejected while losing its 17th straight conference game. The Huskies have dropped 24 of their last 25 against FBS teams. They fell to 0-9 at Nippert Stadium.

 

Texas 27, No. 20 Kansas State 24

Austin, Texas (AP) — Cameron Dicker kicked a 26-yard field goal as time expired to lift Texas past Kansas State as the Longhorns maintained their hopes of returning to the Big 12 championship game.

Dicker has won games on the final play twice this season. His 33-yarder to beat Kansas on Oct. 19 capped a wild 50-48 finish.

Texas (6-3, 4-2) had lost two of its previous three games. The victory over the Wildcats (6-3, 3-3, No. 16 College Football Playoff) made the Longhorns bowl-eligible and kept them in the hunt for a berth in the league championship with three games left.

Keaontay Ingram rushed for 139 yards and two second-half touchdowns for the Longhorns. Kansas State rallied to tie it on Joshua Youngblood's 98-yard kickoff return and Blake Lynch's 45-yard field goal.

 

No. 21 Boise State 20, Wyoming 17, Ot

Boise, Idaho (AP) — Chase Cord threw for 190 yards and a touchdown, Eric Sachse kicked a 28-yard field goal in overtime and Boise State rallied to beat Wyoming.

Boise State (8-1, 4-0, No. 22 CFP) kept its New Year's Day bowl hopes alive as the Group of 5 representative despite playing without injured starting quarterback Hank Bachmeier.

Wyoming (6-3, 3-2), now 0-7 against the Broncos in Boise, failed to hold onto a halftime lead for the second time this season. The Cowboys also squandered a 14-6 advantage at the intermission against San Diego State in a 26-22 loss.

The Cowboys were also without their starting quarterback, Sean Chambers, who went out for the season with a knee injury in Wyoming's previous game against Nevada. Tyler Vander Waal finished 15-of-23 passing for 160 yards.

In the extra period, Boise State's drive stalled at the 11 before Sachse made his kick.

Wyoming could only muster five yards on its first three plays of overtime and Cooper Rothe attempted a 37-yard field goal that fell short to the right.

 

Virginia Tech 36, No. 22 Wake Forest 17

Blacksburg, Va. (AP) — Hendon Hooker accounted for 311 yards of total offense and ran for a touchdown to help Virginia Tech beat Wake Forest.

The Hokies (6-3, 3-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) overcame a 0-6 halftime deficit, scoring 30 second-half points to beat a ranked team for the first time since last year at then-No. 22 Duke.

Deshawn McClease scored touchdowns on back-to-back possessions in the third quarter. His 6-yard touchdown run with 7:02 remaining in the quarter gave the Hokies a 20-17 lead. He had 59 of the Hokies' 228 yards rushing. Hooker completed 15 of 23 for 242 yards and rushed for 69 yards.

Jamie Newman completed 16 of 35 passes for 238 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions for Wake Forest (7-2, 3-2). Kendall Hinton caught eight passes for 162 yards.

 

No. 23 SMU 59, East Carolina 51

Dallas (AP) — Shane Buechele threw five touchdown passes, Xavier Jones broke one of Eric Dickerson's school records and SMU bounced back from its first loss.

The Mustangs (9-1, 5-1 American Athletic) played from ahead and kept it that way in a second straight game with more than 1,000 combined yards. SMU had fallen behind and failed to close the gap last week in a 54-48 loss to No. 19 Memphis.

Buechele threw for 414 yards as the Mustangs finished with 636 total yards to 644 for the Pirates (3-7, 0-6). Kylen Granson caught three touchdowns passes, including a 31-yarder on fourth-and-20 with SMU leading 45-44 midway through the fourth quarter. Granson had 138 yards on seven receptions, and James Proche finished with 14 catches for 167 yards.

Jones, who ran for 157 yards, had three rushing touchdowns for the third time this season, giving him 18. His total touchdowns reached 20, one more than Dickerson had in 1981 — all on the ground. East Carolina's Tyler Snead caught 19 passes for 240 yards.

 

Nevada 17, No. 24 San Diego State 13

San Diego (AP) — Wide receiver Elijah Cooks threw a 50-yard pass on a trick play to set up Devonte Lee's go-ahead, 1-yard run with 10:31 to go that lifted Nevada past San Diego State.

The Wolf Pack surprised the Aztecs with a reverse, with running back Toa Taua flipping the ball to Cooks, who stopped and threw a strike to Brendan O'Leary-Orange at the SDSU 5. Three plays later, Lee burst into the end zone for a 17-10 lead.

The Wolf Pack (6-4, 3-3 Mountain West) became bowl eligible and defeated the Aztecs for the second straight season. SDSU (7-2, 4-2) struggled in its first action since jumping into The Associated Press Top 25 two weeks ago. The Aztecs, whose four-game winning streak was snapped, still lead the West Division.

SDSU's Matt Araiza kicked a 44-yard field goal with 3:46 to go. The Aztecs got the ball back but the drive fizzled near midfield and they turned it over on downs with 1:25 to go.


Man United beats Brighton 3-1 in Premier League

Brighton's Dale Stephens, center, duels for the ball with Manchester United's Anthony Martial during the English Premier League soccer match between Manchester United and Brighton and Hove Albion, at the Old Trafford stadium in Manchester, England, , Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

Wolverhampton, England (AP) — Marcus Rashford struck off the underside of the crossbar to complete Manchester United's 3-1 victory over Brighton in the Premier League on Sunday.

Andreas Pereira put United ahead in the 17th minute before Davy Propper scored an own goal inside two minutes. Rashford netted in the 66th just after Lewis Dunk had reduced the deficit as United rose to seventh in the standings.

Brighton never looked like securing their first ever win at Old Trafford, where Scott McTominay's serious-looking injury late on was a concern.

It was a better afternoon for fellow academy graduate Brandon Williams, who left to a standing ovation after impressing on his first Premier League start.

United showed few signs of fatigue after beating Partizan Belgrade in the Europa League on Thursday and unnerved the Brighton backline from the outset.

Rashford was unable to follow a superb, weaving run with a fitting finish with the hosts' first clear-cut chance, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side would make the breakthrough in the 17th minute.

Victor Lindelof and Fred were involved in a move that ended with Andreas Pereira racing through the middle.

Dale Stephens' tackle looked to have ended that attack, only for the ball to fall kindly for Martial, with the Frenchman cutting back for the Brazilian to hit a strike that went in off the Brighton midfielder.

Matters would soon get worse for Graham Potter's side after Dunk was booked for a late, clumsy challenge on Daniel James. Fred produced a fine delivery from the resulting free kick, leading to a bundling McTominay effort being prodded over the line by Propper.

The VAR checked Harry Maguire's involvement and, 140 seconds after the ball crossed the line, Old Trafford was able to celebrate fully.

It was a rare set piece goal by United against an Albion side looking far more threatening from dead balls.

Martial saw a handball appeal rejected and Pereira was denied from distance as United returned from the break strongly, but there were a few nervy moments when the stadium announcer confirmed that the VAR was checking for a red card.

Williams and his teammates were relieved to see his high foot on Steven Azalte remain a booking.

Brighton goalkeeper Mathew Ryan was equally relieved when he failed to deal with a Fred shot and it bounced back off the bar - a let-off Brighton capitalised on as Pascal Gross swung over a corner that Dunk was all too easily able to meet with a thumping header home.

But rather than wilt, United rallied and within two minutes restored their two-goal cushion.

Fred's pass put Martial behind the Brighton backline and the Frenchman kept his composure when forced wide, playing back for Rashford to smash home off the underside of the bar.

Only the England forward will know how he failed to score a quickfire second. James superbly raced down the right and sent a low cross over to Rashford, who inexplicably screwed wide at the far post with the goal at his mercy.

It was a remarkable miss but United were undeterred as Williams and James quickly had attempts, before Rashford followed some wonderful footwork with a shot saved at the near post by Ryan.

Martial and Rashford both went close as the match came to a disappointing end as McTominay went down with an injury that saw him leave on a stretcher.


Suzuki shoots 67 to win Japan Classic by 3 strokes

 

Japan's Ai Suzuki watches her shot during the second round of the LGPA Japan Classic golf tournament in Otsu, Shiga prefecture, western Japan Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019. (Kyodo News via AP)

Shiga, Japan (AP) — Overnight leader Ai Suzuki shot a bogey-free 5-under 67 on Sunday to win the Japan Classic by three strokes for her first LPGA career victory.

Suzuki carded her fifth birdie of the day on the par-5 18th hole at the Seta Golf Course to finish with a 17-under 199, three shots ahead of Hyo Joo Kim (66).

"This one is special because it's a US LPGA tour event," Suzuki said through a translator. "It's beyond Japan, an International event."

Suzuki is the second straight Japanese winner of the Japan Classic following Nasa Hataoka. With the win, Suzuki, a regular on the JLPGA, becomes eligible for LPGA Tour membership.

"It was my dream so I feel like I want to challenge," Suzuki said. "But I can't speak English so I need to talk to my family because I need their support."

Minjee Lee finished in third place at 11-under 205 after shooting a 68 in the final event of the LPGA Tour's Asia Swing.

Jennifer Kupcho of the United States was tied for fourth with Jin Yang of China after a 68 left her seven strokes back.

"I was hitting the ball really well," Kupcho said. "Gave myself a lot of putts. I even missed a couple, left them on the lip," Kupcho said. "I played really well this week and I'm pretty happy with it."

Gaby Lopez, who started the final round in second place three strokes back, offset a pair of birdies with two bogeys for an even-par 72 that left her tied for sixth place with three others including two-time Japan Classic winner Shanshan Feng (70).

Lexi Thompson, making her first start since the Indy Women in Tech Championship in September, was tied for 24th place after a 71.


India 174-5 in Twenty20 decider vs Bangladesh

 India's K.L. Rahul raises his bat after scoring fifty runs during third Twenty20 international cricket match against Bangladesh in Nagpur, India, Sunday, Nov. 10, 2019. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

Nagpur, India (AP) — Shreyas Iyer and Lokesh Rahul scored attacking half-centuries as India reached 174-5 in the third Twenty20 against Bangladesh on Sunday.

The three-game series is currently tied at 1-1.

Iyer scored a career-best 62 runs off 33 balls — with three fours and five sixes — while Rahul made 52 off 35 balls as they rescued India's innings after a double blow early on.

Put into bat, India made a poor start with big-hitting Rohit Sharma (2) and Shikhar Dhawan (19) falling cheaply.

Bangladesh won the first T20 by seven wickets, its first-ever win over India in the T20 format.

India beat Bangladesh by eight wickets in the second T20 to level the series 1-1.


Els adds 2 more Presidents Cup rookies with captain's picks

Jason Day of Australia watches his tee shot on the 11th hole during the first round of the Zozo Championship PGA Tour at the Accordia Golf Narashino country club in Inzai, east of Tokyo, Japan, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

Sungjae Im of South Korea tees off during the HSBC Champions golf tournament at the Sheshan International Golf Club in Shanghai Friday, Nov. 1, 2019. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

Doug Ferguson

Ernie Els filled out his International team already loaded with newcomers by choosing two more Presidents Cup rookies with his captain's picks Wednesday night.

Els took a pair of 21-year-old rookies, Joaquin Niemann of Chile and Sungjae Im of South Korea, with two of his picks. That will give the International team six rookies as it tries to end a streak of seven straight losses to the Americans.

He also took Jason Day of Australia and Adam Hadwin of Canada. Day is playing the Presidents Cup for the fifth time, but first as a captain's pick. Hadwin made his debut in 2017 at Liberty National, a loss so bad the Americans nearly clinched it before Sunday singles.

Els said he was not afraid to play anyone, and he had no plans to hide anyone by sitting them out.

"I'm picking guys to play, to get enough points to get over the line," Els said. "And that's what the players' mission is — to get enough points to get the cup back."

U.S. captain Tiger Woods makes his four picks Thursday. Woods, the Masters champion who captured his 82nd career PGA Tour victory two weeks ago in Japan, is expected to pick himself. He would be the first playing-captain since Hale Irwin at the inaugural Presidents Cup in 1994.

The Presidents Cup is Dec. 12-15 at Royal Melbourne in Australia, where the International team of players from every continent but Europe won for the only time in 1998. The United States won the last time it was Royal Melbourne in 2011.

Els said he relied some on statistics, but he leaned just as heavily on a long run of good golf. Unlike the Ryder Cup, where the captain's picks are decided two weeks before the matches, the Presidents Cup is still six weeks away.

Im was the PGA Tour rookie of the year last season, the only rookie to reach the Tour Championship. His only victory this year was at the Genesis Championship on the Korean Tour. Niemann, the first player from Chile to be in the Presidents Cup, earned his PGA Tour card the year he turned pro. He won at the Greenbrier last month for his first PGA Tour victory.

"We're really going to lean on you," Els told Niemann during a conference call.

Day was the obvious choice, even though he failed to win for the second time in the last three PGA Tour seasons and has dropped to No. 29 in the world ranking. Day is 1-7-2 in his last two Presidents Cup.

Hadwin has a pair of runner-up finishes this year, most recently in the Safeway Open.

"I'm hungry for a second shot," said Hadwin, part of the International team what was soundly beaten at Liberty National in 2017.

The rest of the International team features Hideki Matsuyama, Adam Scott, Louis Oosthuizen and Marc Leishman, along with Presidents Cup rookies Abraham Ancer of Mexico, Li Haotong of China, Cameron Smith of Australia and C.T. Pan of Taiwan.

"These guys are world-class players and they've proven themselves," Els said. "Take age out of the equation. They're got one hell of a big future in this event. I'm real excited by the new blood that's coming in. It balances the team."

Among picks Els considered were Corey Conners of Canada, Byeong Hun An of South Korea, and South Africans Branden Grace and Erik van Rooyen.

The Presidents Cup has been a lopsided affair since it began in 1994, patterned after the Ryder Cup to give international players from outside Europe a chance to compete in a team event. The United States leads the series 10-1-1, with the tie coming in South Africa and Els and Woods tied a playoff match in darkness.


This is for you, South Africa: Springboks start trophy tour

South African Springbok rugby captain Siya Kolisi with the Web Ellis trophy arrives back on home soil at the O.R. Tambo Airport in Johannesburg Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019. South Africa beat England in the Rugby World Cup final Saturday 32-12. (AP Photo/Themba Hadebe)

Pretoria, South Africa (AP) — Telling ordinary South Africans that the victory and the trophy was for them, Springboks captain Siya Kolisi and his team have started a five-day tour where they will carry the Rugby World Cup across the country.

On a sunny morning, Kolisi stood Thursday at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, the seat of South Africa's government, and said the support of ordinary South Africans was "the most important thing." He told the celebrating crowd, "thank you, South Africa, this is for you," referring to the golden trophy resting on a pedestal nearby overlooking the capital city.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was present to congratulate the Springboks. He joked he was glad it wasn't an election year in South Africa because the Springboks "would have won."

South Africa beat England in Saturday's final in Japan to clinch a third World Cup title.


DeAngelo, Lundqvist lead Rangers to 5-1 win over Red Wings

New York Rangers defenseman Marc Staal (18) skates against Detroit Red Wings center Christoffer Ehn (70) during the first period of an NHL hockey game, Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, at Madison Square Garden in New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Vin A. Cherwoo

New York (AP) — After a bad loss in their last game, the New York Rangers bounced back with a big win.

Tony DeAngelo had a goal and an assist in New York's three-goal second period, Henrik Lundqvist stopped 35 shots during his first start in 10 days, and the Rangers beat the struggling Detroit Red Wings 5-1 night.

New York was coming off a 6-2 defeat against an Ottawa team that had been winless on the road this season.

"We had to have a performance like this after what happened last game," Lundqvist said. "You need to learn from our ups and downs and I think we did."

Artemi Panarin and Ryan Strome also had a goal and an assist apiece, and Chris Kreider and Greg McKegg scored to help New York win for the fourth time in six games. Lundqvist, after sitting out the previous three games, made 24 saves over the final 28:06.

"It was really important (to get the win)," Panarin said through a translator. "We played more simple, with less mistakes."

Valtteri Filppula scored and Jimmy Howard finished with 26 saves, but the Red Wings' fourth straight loss dropped them to 1-11-1 in their last 13 games.

"It's frustrating," Dylan Larkin said. "It's night after night. We try different things, different lineups. It was special teams tonight. Seems like it's a different story every night. We can't really seem to generate a full 60 minutes, full complete game."

Trailing 3-1 in the second, the Red Wings picked up the pressure. They outshot the Rangers 15-3 over a 16½-minute stretch, but couldn't beat Lundqvist.

The Rangers' goalie credited his team's defensive effort in limiting Detroit's bona fide scoring chances.

"I think that was the most structured game I've had in front of me so far this year," Lundqvist said. "We were in the right place, and the few chances they had I felt we were there to help out on rebounds and didn't give them too much room."

McKegg pushed the lead to 4-1 at 8:44 on the Rangers' third shot of the period. With the Red Wings on a power play, he brought the puck up the left side and sent a shot that went off the shaft of Howard's stick and up in the air. With the goalie unaware where the puck was as it lay in front, McKegg skated up and put it in for New York's third short-handed score of the season.

The Rangers also had two power-play goals and one at even strength, and held the Red Wings to 0 for 2 on their power play.

"Penalty killing and power plays is going to be the difference a lot of nights," Lundqvist said. "We know that and we continue to work on it in practice and talk before games. It's such a big part of winning and it's nice when we take care of business like that."

Panarin added an empty-netter with 2:37 left for his seventh goal and 14th point, both team highs.

After a scoreless first period, the Rangers took control with three goals in the first 8:49 of the second — including two on their first three shots.

DeAngelo got New York on the board with a power-play goal, knocking in the rebound of Brendan Lemieux's shot in front for his sixth at 4:25.

Kreider made it 2-0 as he beat Howard up high on the glove side from the right side for his third at 6:04.

The Rangers made it 3-0 with their second power-play goal of the period as Adam Fox's shot deflected off Strome's right shoulder and in at 8:49. Strome has five goals and six assists in his last eight games.

Just 52 seconds later, Filppula put the puck past Lundqvist on an odd-man rush to pull the Red Wings to 3-1.

Up Next:

Red Wings: Host the Boston Bruins on Friday night.

Rangers: At the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday night.


Bucks hold off Clippers 129-124 for 4th win in a row

Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) dribbles past Los Angeles Clippers' Maurice Harkless during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Beth Harris

Los Angeles (AP) — The numbers are adding up quickly for Giannis Antetokounmpo.

The reigning NBA MVP had 38 points and 16 rebounds to help the Milwaukee Bucks beat the Los Angeles Clippers 129-124 for their fourth victory in a row.

It's what he's done to start the season that really stands out.

Antetokounmpo became the first player in league history with 200 points, 100 rebounds and 50 assists in the first eight games of a season.

"He played the whole fourth quarter and was fabulous," Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said.

Antetokounmpo had 13 points in 12 minutes during the fourth as Milwaukee repelled several threats by the Clippers, who kept getting within four only to come up short.

"Guys were physical with me but at the end of the day you've just got to keep doing what you're doing," Antetokounmpo said. "I was trying to make plays, try to stay aggressive. That's what my teammates wanted me to do."

Antetokounmpo just missed a triple-double with nine assists. He's posted at least 10 rebounds and five assists in each of the first eight games this season, the first player to do that since at least 1972-73.

"He's a beast," Clippers coach Doc Rivers said.

George Hill scored 24 points off the bench and hit six of the Bucks' 18 3-pointers.

The Clippers were without Kawhi Leonard, who rested for the first half of a home back-to-back. He'll play against Portland on Thursday night.

"When he sits out we've just got to step up," said Lou Williams, who had 34 points and 11 assists.

Montrezl Harrell had a career-high 34 points and 13 rebounds in his first start of the season.

"It don't mean nothing," he said in a low voice. "We lost."

Patrick Beverley added 20 points and 10 rebounds in the Clippers' first home defeat.

Led by Hill and Kyle Korver with 14 points, the Bucks' reserves outscored the Clippers' bench 47-20, the first time that's happened to Los Angeles this season. Harrell and Williams being in the starting lineup reduced much of the bench production.

Los Angeles starter Landry Shamet had just two points coming into the fourth, but made four 3-pointers and finished with 14 points. The last one put the Clippers within two with 23 seconds left.

"If we came up with one or two more stops, the game might have been different," Harrell said.

The Bucks finished it off at the free throw line, and the Clippers couldn't connect on multiple chances during their last possession.

"They had us on our heels the whole game," Williams said. "We just weren't as sharp as we'd like to be."

The Clippers closed within four early in the fourth, but Antetokounmpo reeled off seven straight points to keep the Bucks ahead 115-103.

"I just know he's always around the rim," former Clippers guard Eric Bledsoe said of Antetokounmpo. "Even though it's a bad play or whatnot, he's going to be under the rim, so I just find a way to get it to him."

Bledsoe added 20 points, and Brook Lopez had 11 points and 12 rebounds for the Bucks.

The Clippers erased an 11-point deficit in the third. They forced three ties, but each time Antetokounmpo answered for the Bucks. He dunked, hit a 3-pointer and made two free throws.

Milwaukee outscored the Clippers 15-6 to take a 98-89 lead into the fourth.

The Bucks opened the second on a 30-11 run, hitting five 3-pointers, for their largest lead of 17 points. Hill scored 14 to help the Bucks lead 70-59 at halftime. They closed with three consecutive 3s, two by Hill and the last by Korver, who beat the buzzer.


Calling plays in NFL a challenge for some rookie NFL coaches

In this Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019, file photo, Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur celebrates with quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) after a touchdown during the first half of an NFL football game against the Kansas City Chiefs, in Kansas City, Mo. Being a rookie head coach in the NFL is challenging enough, and also calling plays for the offense only increases the difficulty. Having Rodgers has helped ease the growing pains for LaFleur. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)

In this Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, file photo, Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury talks with quarterback Kyler Murray (1) during the first half of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

In this Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, file photo, Cincinnati Bengals head coach Zac Taylor looks on during the first half of an NFL football game against the Baltimore Ravens, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Gail Burton, File)

In this Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, file photo, Cleveland Browns players encourage head coach Freddie Kitchens to throw a challenge flag during an NFL football game against the Seattle Seahawks, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/David Richard, File)

Teresa M. Walker

Maybe Sean McVay made it all look just too easy.

McVay coached the Los Angeles Rams to the playoffs each of his first two seasons, including the Super Bowl in February. He proved such a perfect match with quarterback Jared Goff that six of eight NFL teams hiring this offseason turned to offensive-minded coaches to turn their franchises around.

Adding play calling to a rookie head coach's job description, it turns out, can be too difficult for newcomers to handle along with basic game management.

Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay and Kyler Murray in Arizona have eased the growing pains for Matt LaFleur and Kliff Kingsbury. Zac Taylor in Cincinnati and Freddie Kitchens in Cleveland, on the other hand, are being second-guessed for trying to do too much halfway through their first seasons. And neither is willing to lighten the load and hand off play-calling duties.

"No. It is not happening," Kitchens said Monday. "I am calling the plays. I am the head coach. That is not happening."

Taylor is the first Bengals coach to lose his first eight games, and his big change at Cincinnati's bye is benching veteran Andy Dalton for rookie Ryan Finley. Taylor will continue to call plays for the NFL's last winless team.

"We've won zero games and have not scored enough points," Taylor said. "And that 100 percent falls on me. But I do like the communication we have as a staff. The play calls come out of my mouth. We have great chemistry as a staff. We put a good plan together, and we are all on the same page when the calls come out regardless of who call it."

Neither Kitchens nor Taylor had ever been head coaches at any level until this season, and they have little experience calling plays. At least Kitchens can point to how Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield blossomed over the second half of last season once Kitchens was promoted to offensive coordinator from running backs coach.

Taylor called plays for the final five games in 2015 with the Miami Dolphins and was offensive coordinator in college at Cincinnati in 2016. The Bengals hired Taylor after he was assistant wide receivers coach in 2017 and quarterbacks coach in 2018 with the Rams — and McVay, who calls his own plays.

And Taylor uses a play-action system similar to the Rams that is heavily dependent on a decent run game. Unfortunately, the banged-up Bengals rank last in the NFL averaging 59.5 yards rushing a game and have been held under 35 yards four times. Cincinnati's offensive line has struggled so much Taylor has had to keep tight ends in to help block.

The Browns are 2-6 after being popular picks to win the AFC North. Injuries have been a big issue. But Kitchens has appeared overwhelmed at times on the sideline. Kitchens was criticized heavily for not calling a running play inside the 10 late in a 20-13 loss to the Rams in September. Mayfield threw four times, the last intercepted in the end zone. The Browns coach took the blame for his play-calling in that fourth quarter.

More than a month later, Kitchens called a shovel pass New England intercepted on its way to a 27-13 win. Worse, the Browns' offense ranks 25th, scoring 19 points a game.

"Everything about the program should reflect on me and I will accept it," Kitchens said. "But I also have a hand in fixing it."

Arizona hired Kingsbury in part because he coached the 2018 NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes during his tenure as head coach at Texas Tech. The Cardinals drafted Murray with the No. 1 pick overall in April, and the duo has helped the Cardinals start 3-5-1.

Still, Kingsbury has had his growing pains.

"I'm used to 80 or 85 snaps, and now you're getting 65, maybe 70, so you have to make sure when you look at that sheet, you're not just calling something to get it called or playing really fast because you're trying to out-maneuver them with tempo," Kingsbury said. "You have to make sure you have a point to every play, and that's helped me throughout this first month and a half get adjusted."

Then there's LaFleur who is working with the 35-year-old two-time MVP in Rodgers. LaFleur was the Rams' coordinator in McVay's rookie season and only called plays in 2018 as Tennessee's coordinator before Green Bay hired him. But the Packers are 7-2, and LaFleur says the relationship between quarterback and coach is critical.

"The way I view the quarterback is, it's an extension of the coaching staff," LaFleur said. "And so yeah we got to be on the same page. I think that just like any relationship, it takes time to make sure the communication is on point."

Faster for some than others.


Charles Howell III takes family on 'once-in-a-lifetime' trip

In this June 27, 2019, file photo, Charles Howell III drives during the first round of the Rocket Mortgage Classic golf tournament, in Detroit. Howell turned the Asian swing on the PGA Tour into a five-week working vacation to let his two elementary-school children see more of the world. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio, File)

Doug Ferguson

Shanghai (AP) — Not long after Charles Howell III finished his final round in Las Vegas, he packed up for a trip to Asia he never imagined taking.

It wasn't just for golf. And he wasn't alone.

Howell took his wife and two children on a five-week tour of Asia that isn't over yet. It started with a week in Hong Kong, and his family followed him to PGA Tour stops in South Korea, Japan and mainland China. This week, they're off to Thailand before returning home to Florida.

"We just decided to do something we've never done," Howell said. "It was a once-in-a-lifetime trip. They're old enough to get it and love it and appreciate it, but young enough where we can still manage to make it work."

His children, Ansley Grace and Chase, are in third and second grade. Howell said they would Facetime with their teachers in their morning (evening in Florida), do their school work and then head off for adventures they can't find inside the gates of Isleworth.

"We thought the kids would learn from this real-world experience in other countries with different languages, different currencies, different beliefs," he said. "It's been more fun than I thought it would be."

The highlight?

That came at the start of their working vacation in Hong Kong, where tensions have been running high the last five months amid pro-democracy protests.

"With what's going on in the world, walking straight out of a department store into a 20,000-person protest," Howell said. "The kids talked to some of them and they explained what they were doing. And then the temples, the religions, it was just incredible."

Howell took his son to play Hong Kong Golf Club, but that was the extent of his golf outside the three tour stops, where his best finish was a tie for eighth in the ZoZo Championship, the PGA Tour's first official event in Japan.

"If my family wasn't here, I would definitely not have played three in a row," Howell said. "I wanted the kids to see the world isn't the border of the United States, that the border isn't the back gate at Isleworth."

The final stop was Thailand, primarily for the kids to see the elephants. Howell is friends with Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who told him he would love his home country. Nothing on the trip has disappointed thus far.


Mete scores twice as Canadiens beat Bruins 5-4

Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask makes a save against Montreal Canadiens' Tomas Tatar during the first period of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019, in Montreal. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press via AP)

Montreal (AP) — A video review left Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy seeing red.

An overturned goal on a coach's challenge for offside in the third period gave Montreal momentum, and the Canadiens went on to beat Boston 5-4 on Tuesday — a rare regulation loss for the division-leading Bruins.

It looked as if Cassidy's team went up 5-4 when Charlie Coyle beat Carey Price. But the officials held a lengthy video review on Claude Julien's challenge and determined Coyle was offside on the zone entry during the play.

"The rule was put in place specifically for egregious (calls)," Cassidy said. "They're over there for three minutes. What is the purpose for this rule? You either find something or you don't. Now you're looking for something for it to be offside. You know it's going to go the other way and it did.

"It was a big part of the game and it didn't go our way."

Down 4-3 in the third, the Bruins tied the score when Sean Kuraly surprised Price on a wraparound at 3:03. It looked as if Boston was taking over — until Coyle's goal was overturned.

Ben Chariot scored and gave Montreal (8-5-2) the win with a wrist shot from the face-off circle just a few minutes later. The Canadiens have won four of their last five.

"Our video guys saw the puck on the line and the skates across it," said Julien, who coached his 1,200th NHL game. "If we don't win that challenge, they have a one-goal lead and a two-minute power play. It could have gone their way.

"We were right and we stopped Boston's momentum. From there, we got better."

The Bruins (11-2-2) saw their six-game win streak come to an end as they lost in regulation for the first time since Oct. 10, in Colorado against the Avalanche.

Boston was playing the second game of a back-to-back and it showed, going down 3-1 in the first period.

The Canadiens scored just 1:13 into the game when Victor Mete scored off a rebound of a shot by Jeff Petry under Tuukka Rask's glove for his first of two goals in the game.

David Pastrnak netted the equalizer six seconds into a Boston power play, a one-timer at 14:55. Pastrnak, the NHL scoring leader, extended his career-high point streak to 13 games.

Montreal was back in it two minutes later. A breakout pass by Brendan Gallagher led to a 2-on-1, with Tomas Tatar shooting off the post and in.

After Artturi Lehkonen forced a turnover, Paul Byron went between Rask's pads to make it 3-1 Canadiens at 17:16 with his first goal of the year.

It was hardly a goaltending battle, with Price stopping 21 of 25 shots, while Rask gave up five goals on 31 shots.

"It's one of those nights where instead of a hockey puck, it feels like a golf ball out there," said Rask, who suffered his first regulation defeat. "I was just not tracking it well. Tough night for me. Couldn't really make a save."

The Bruins clawed their way back in the second period with the help of Connor Clifton and Anders Bjork.

The Canadiens failed to clear their zone and Clifton made them pay with his first NHL goal at 7:17 to make it 3-2.

Boston evened the score at 18:13 when Bjork was first to a loose puck in the crease. Mete gave Montreal the 4-3 lead 42 seconds later with a shot from the point.

Bruins captain Zdeno Chara played his 1,500th game. Bell Centre fans gave Chara, who is usually booed in Montreal, a rare ovation for the accomplishment. The 42-year-old is the 21st player to reach that mark.

"I really appreciated it and it was very classy," Chara said of the fan reaction. "It's something I will definitely remember. That just shows they are very passionate fans. We had some battles, it's a good rivalry. Lots of history with both teams. Always fun to play these games."

Notes: Ryan Poehling made his season debut with Jesperi Kotkaniemi (groin) on the disabled list. ... Boston had won five straight games in Montreal.

Up Next:

Bruins: At Detroit Red Wings on Friday.

Canadiens: At Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday.


Russia, US go toe-to-toe at anti-doping meeting

In this Feb. 18, 2014, file photo, a Russian skating fan holds the country's national flag over the Olympic rings before the men's 10,000-meter speed skating race at Adler Arena Skating Center during the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Formed with good intentions, the World Anti-Doping Agency finds itself at a crossroads as it celebrates its 20th anniversary at a conference this week in Poland. It’s an agency riven with conflicts that have hindered its fight against drugs and exacerbated its 4-year-old struggle in the high-profile case against Russia. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)

In this Feb. 28, 2017, file photo, Travis Tygart, the chief executive officer of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

In this Feb. 5, 2018 file photo, Russia's sports minister Pavel Kolobkov attends a press conference in Moscow. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin, File)

Eddie Pells

Katowice, Poland (AP) — The fight was about doping.

The United States delivered haymakers. Russia came back with jabs.

The proverbial blows were delivered Wednesday in a vast conference room in Poland during a pair of 3-minute speeches that cut through the tedium of an otherwise sleepy rule-making forum held by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Those speeches — one from Travis Tygart of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, the other from Russian sports minister Pavel Kolobkov — illustrated the wide gap in perceptions about what, exactly, has transpired over the past five years in the wake of a government-backed doping scheme in Russia that has upended the Olympic world and, most recently, imperiled the country's eligibility for next year's games.

"We cannot allow one country's proven state-sponsored doping system to steal medals and glory from clean athletes," Tygart said. "The Tokyo Games will be at least the fifth Olympic Games where state doping, and not clean athletes, are the issue."

Not far from Tygart sat Kolobkov, whose turn at the microphone came about a half-hour later and was filled with familiar Russian talking points.

"Now, there has become a vital need for a new generation of athletes," Kolobkov said, reminding the audience "that sport is out of politics, that sport unites."

Russia, with occasional encouragement from WADA and the International Olympic Committee, has often portrayed the push for harsh sanctions as being driven by political interests in the West.

Tygart and many of his Western counterparts have turned to the evidence from a pair of WADA-backed investigations — one in 2015 and one in 2016 — that uncovered a state-sponsored doping system designed to win medals at the Sochi Olympics and other major events.

WADA has struggled to bring the country back in line.

It agreed to reinstate a reconfigured Russian anti-doping agency in exchange for data from the Moscow testing laboratory that would be used to corroborate cases stemming from the scandal.

But earlier this year, proof emerged that the data has been tampered with, leading to a new investigation, the results of which should be revealed later this month.

The Russian imbroglio is not a major agenda item this week, but there was no pretending the issue — the corruption as well as the way WADA and the IOC have handled it — hasn't been front and center at this conference.

"We must have a strong, independent WADA — not a weak service provider some have enjoyed over the last several years," Tygart said, as WADA President Craig Reedie and many of the agency's executives looked on.

America's newly appointed White House anti-doping representative, Kendel Ehrlich, piled on in her own speech later, saying the Russia scandal has dragged on far too long.

"We recognize the need for process, but also recognize the need for swift action to preserve the reputation of WADA," she said.

Also speaking: the Russian anti-doping agency's new CEO, Yuri Ganus.

Ganus has been critical of his own country in his quest to make sure his agency isn't penalized for the acts of others. His main argument is that the misdeeds in Russia were committed under previous management. He called for WADA to take a "wise and differentiated approach in deciding on this issue."

"Independence is determined by the length of the dog's leash," Ganus said.

WADA's decision, which could, in turn, be appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, could very well determine whether Russia will be allowed to compete next year in Tokyo.

One thing the Russians and Americans have in common: They view it as a cut-and-dried case.

"We discharged all the obligations that depended on us," Kolobkov said. "Throughout these years we have been in closer cooperation with WADA than ever before."


Hamilton clinches F1 championship No. 6 at US Grand Prix

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, left, of Britain, celebrates as Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas, middle, of Finland, and Red Bull driver Max Verstappen, of the Netherlands, watch following the Formula One U.S. Grand Prix auto race at the Circuit of the Americas, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)

By JIM VERTUNO

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Lewis Hamilton could have settled in for a nice Sunday drive to win the Formula One championship.

There was no chance he was going to do that. Not with history at his fingertips.

Hamilton wrapped up his sixth career F1 championship with a second-place finish at the U.S. Grand Prix, a race he led late until surrendering the position to Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas in the final laps.

The 34-year-old British driver moved with one of the record seven titles won by Germany's Michael Schumacher. Hamilton has won the last three championships and locked this one up with two races left.

"Still we rise!" Hamilton shouted to his team over the car radio after the checkered flag.

Once he parked, Hamilton stood on his car and grabbed his head in both hands, then draped himself in a Union Jack flag. Minutes later, rival Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, whose run of four straight titles was ended by Hamilton in 2014, embraced him with a handshake and a hug.

The sixth championship moves Hamilton past Argentina's Juan Manuel Fangio, the "Godfather" of F1 drivers who won five titles in the 1950s.

"It's an honor to be up here with these (past) greats," Hamilton said.

Hamilton has been a dominant force at the Circuit of the Americas, with five wins here since it opened in 2012, but a poor qualifying left him starting from the third row in fifth. He said after qualifying he'd need a "miracle" to win, then tried to make it happen.

Hamilton avoided trouble at the start as the cars bolted uphill into the blind left turn that can turn the field into a demolition derby. He stayed clear of the dangerous traffic and gave Red Bull's Max Verstappen and Ferrari's Leclerc plenty of room to avoid a collision.

Hamilton turned the race on its head with a bolt to third on the first lap when he passed the Ferraris of Vettel and Charles Leclerc. That made the championship all but inevitable, as a finish as low as eighth would clinch it.

Hamilton wasn't going to settle for that.

He secured the 2015 title on the same track when he fought off Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg in the final laps to get the victory.  He was somewhat disappointed in in 2017 and 2018 when he clinched those titles in Mexico City without reaching the podium either time.

That made a podium Sunday a must.

"My dad taught me when I was like 6 or 7 years old to never give up. That's our family motto," Hamilton said. "That's all was thinking all day, 'How could I win this race?'"

Bottas was the only driver still mathematically in the hunt for the title, but just barely. Bottas had to win and have Hamilton fade to his worst finish of the year in order to extend the championship to the Brazilian Grand Prix in two weeks.

Bottas started from pole and was off and running with a good start. Hamilton grabbed the lead when Bottas pitted for tires and he wouldn't let it go without a fight.

Hamilton defended against a Bottas pass attempt with six laps remaining before finally surrendering the spot on the next lap.

"Winning it was the only thing I could do to try to maintain the title hopes," Bottas said. "I did my part but Lewis was still strong, as he always is."

Verstappen was looking to pass Hamilton on the final lap, but a yellow flag caused by Haas driver Kevin Magnussen ended the threat and gave Mercedes the 1-2 finish.

The Circuit of the Americas had a special parking spot next to the podium reserved for the championship car.

There was only one car that could be. It was a silver Mercedes No. 44.

"I remember watching this sport when I was younger," Hamilton said. "It's beyond surreal to think that this journey, that my life journey has brought me to this point."


Djokovic dominates Shapovalov to win 5th Paris Masters title

Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates after winning the final match of the Paris Masters tennis tournament in Paris, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019. Djokovic defeated Denis Shapovalov of Canada 6-3/6-4. (AP Photo/Kamil Zihnioglu)

By JEROME PUGMIRE

PARIS (AP) — Novak Djokovic beat a nervous Denis Shapovalov 6-3, 6-4 Sunday to win his fifth Paris Masters final and 34th overall Masters title to move one behind all-time leader Rafael Nadal.

Shapovalov had a walkover into his first Masters final because the second-ranked Nadal pulled out of their semifinal with an abdominal strain.

The odds looked heavily stacked against the 20-year-old Canadian and the top-ranked Djokovic never appeared troubled on his way to a fifth ATP title this year — putting him level with Dominic Thiem — and his 77th overall.

Djokovic served out the match with a love hold, hitting a forehand winner before turning to look at his box and raising his arms in triumph.

"It was my best serving performance of the tournament," Djokovic said. "Denis maybe lost his focus a bit."

Shapovalov entered the match with only one career title — a modest ATP 250-level tournament in Stockholm last month — and having lost his three previous encounters against a 16-time Grand Slam winner considered among the all-time greats of tennis.

The big-serving left hander looked tense, making three unforced errors in his first service game and slipping quickly to 3-0 down against a composed Djokovic playing in his 50th Masters final and 111th overall.

Even though Shapovalov held his next serve, it was inconsistent with a double fault, a mistimed ball toss and an ace. After botching a return on Djokovic's opening serve of the seventh game he whacked his racket into the ground in frustration.

Dropping only four points on his serve in the first set, Djokovic clinched it with another dominant serving game which included two aces and concluded with a volleyed forehand winner at the net.

Shapovalov was up against it right from the start of the second set, saving a break point with an ace. Unforced errors resurfaced in the seventh game and Djokovic ruthlessly punished him with a break for a 4-3 lead.

Djokovic saved his first break point of the match at 30-40 in the next game when Shapovalov returned a sliced serve well wide.

With that, the briefest glimmer of hope was gone.

"I'm sure the best things are yet to come for you," Djokovic sportingly said to Shapovalov during the trophy ceremony.

Djokovic has won every final he's played at Bercy Arena except for last year's against Karen Khachanov, which came after a grueling three-hour semifinal against 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer.

This year, Djokovic did not drop a set and heads to the upcoming ATP Finals in London looking to secure the year-ending No. 1 ranking for a sixth time. That would move him two ahead of Nadal, one ahead of Federer and Jimmy Connors, and into a tie with record-holder Pete Sampras.

Nadal is also in strong contention to finish the year as No. 1 but it remains uncertain whether the injury-hit Spaniard can play at the ATP Finals, which start Nov. 10.


Schär wins 3rd straight NYC Marathon women's wheelchair race

Participants in the wheelchair division make their way across the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge during the start of the New York City Marathon, Sunday, Nov. 3, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Julius Motal)

NEW YORK (AP) — Manuela Schär of Switzerland has won her third straight women's wheelchair title at the New York City Marathon, giving her eight consecutive marathon major victories.

After rolling ahead of the record pace for much of Sunday's race, Schär crossed the finish about a minute off the mark at 1 hour, 44 minutes and 20 seconds.

Daniel Romanchuk of the United States repeated as men's wheelchair champion in another tight finish over Switzerland's Marcel Hug.

Romanchuk held off Hug with a final sprint through Central Park, crossing the finish line in 1 hour, 37 minutes and 24 seconds. Hug was one second behind for a second straight year, and Germany's David Weir and American Aaron Pike were also within 10 seconds.

Last year, Romanchuk became the first American and youngest competitor to win the men's division as a 20-year-old. He followed with victories this year at the Boston and London Marathons. Hug took the New York title in 2016 and 2017.


Desisa drops out of NYC Marathon after taxing win in Doha

In this Oct. 6, 2019, file photo, Lelisa Desisa, of Ethiopia, wins the men's marathon at the World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar. The IOC is seeking to relocate next summer’s Olympic marathon from steamy Tokyo to the cooler northern city of Sapporo after seeing competitors collapse in extreme heat at the world championships in Qatar. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty, File)

By JAKE SEINER

NEW YORK (AP) — Reigning men's champion Lelisa Desisa has dropped out of the New York City Marathon after completing just seven miles, perhaps hurting following a grueling victory at the sweltering world championships last month.

Desisa, who is from Ethiopia, was in 17th place at the seven-mile mark before leaving the course Sunday. It was 45 degrees F (7 degrees C) at the start of the men's race, ideal for marathoning.

Desisa was attempting to defend his title 29 days after winning worlds in Doha, Qatar, in boiling conditions he described this week as "dangerous." With a temperature of 84 degrees F (29 degrees C) for the midnight start, 18 of 73 men didn't finish that race.

Conditions were even worse for the women's marathon in Doha, where 28 of 68 starters failed to finish.

Shortly after, the IOC announced plans to move next year's Olympic marathon from steamy Tokyo to the cooler northern city of Sapporo, leading to a spat with Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike. She conceded to the IOC on Friday.


Nationals fans rejoice in red as hometown heroes are honored

Fans cheer as Washington Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman holds up the World Series trophy during a parade to celebrate the team's World Series baseball championship over the Houston Astros, Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

By CAROLE FELDMAN and LYNN BERRY

WASHINGTON (AP) — The song "Baby Shark" blared over loudspeakers and a wave of red washed across this politically blue capital Saturday as Nationals fans rejoiced at a parade marking Washington's first World Series victory since 1924.

"They say good things come to those who wait. Ninety-five years is a pretty long wait," Nationals owner Ted Lerner, who is 94, told the cheering crowd. "But I'll tell you, this is worth the wait."

As buses carrying the players and team officials wended their way along the parade route, pitcher Max Scherzer at one point hoisted the World Series trophy to the cheers of the crowd.

At a rally just blocks from the Capitol, Scherzer said his teammates grinded their hearts out to "stay in the fight." And then, after backup outfielder Gerardo Parra joined the team, he said, they started dancing and having fun. And they started hitting. "Never in this town have you seen a team compete with so much heart and so much fight," he said.

And then, after he spoke, the Nats danced.

Team officials, Nationals manager Dave Martinez and several players thanked the fans for their support through the best of times and staying with them even after a dismal 19-31 start to the season. "I created the circle of trust and I trusted these guys," he said.

The camaraderie among the players was a theme heard throughout the rally. "It took all 25 of us, every single day we were pulling for each other," said pitcher Stephen Strasburg, the World Series MVP.

Nationals veteran slugger Howie Kendrick, 36, said that when he came to the Nationals in 2017, "I was thinking about retiring. This city taught me to love baseball again."

Another veteran, first baseman Ryan Zimmerman, choked back tears as he recalled how he and the fans grew up together. He was 20 when he joined the Nationals during their first season, in 2005.

"I got guys that come up to me now that are 30 years old and said I've been their favorite player since they were a little kid, which is disturbing —  basically like Juan," he said.

It was a reference to Juan Soto, the left fielder who turned 21 during the series.

Washington had been thirsting for a World Series championship for nearly a century. The Nationals gave them that by winning in seven games over the Houston Astros; the clincher came on the road Wednesday night.

"I just wish they could have won in DC," said Ronald Saunders of Washington, who came with a Little League team that was marching in the parade.

Nick Hashimoto of Dulles, Virginia, was among those who arrived at 5 a.m. to snag a front-row spot. He brought his own baby shark toy in honor of Parra's walk-up song, which began as a parental tribute to the musical taste of his 2-year-old daughter and ended up as a rallying cry that united fans at Nationals Park and his teammates.

As "Baby Shark, doo doo doo doo doo doo" played on a crisp morning, early risers joined in with the trademark response — arms extended in a chomping motion. Chants of "Let's go Nats!" resonated from the crowd hours before the rally.

Kimberly Ballou of Silver Spring, Maryland, said sports "is a unifier" that transcends race, gender and class and brings people together.

The crowd along the route was deeply packed. Cheers went up and fans waved red streamers, hand towels and signs that said "Fight Finished" as the players rode by on the open top of double-decker buses. General Manager Mike Rizzo, a cigar in his mouth, jumped off with the World Series trophy to show the fans lining the barricades and slap high-fives. Manager Martinez also got in on the fun.

"We know what this title means to DC, a true baseball town, from the Senators to the Grays and now the Nationals," Mayor Muriel Bowser said. "By finishing the fight you have brought a tremendous amount of joy to our town and inspired a new generation of players and Nationals fans."

Bowser added: "We are deeply proud of you and I think we should do it again next year. What do you think?" Then she started a chant of "Back to back! Back to back!"

Martinez said he liked to hear the mayor pushing for back-to-back championships and said: "I get it. I'm all in. But let me enjoy this one first. I don't know if my heart can take any more of this right now. I need to just step back and enjoy this."

Martinez, who had a heart procedure recently, said that during the Series, as things heated up, players and fans shouted at him to watch out for his heart. "All this right here has cured my heart," he said.

And as the "Baby Shark" theme played once more, team owner Lerner told the team's veterans, "From now on, you can call me 'Grandpa Shark.'"

President Donald Trump has invited the Nationals to the White House on Monday, though relief pitcher Sean Doolittle doesn't plan to attend.

"There's a lot of things, policies that I disagree with, but at the end of the day, it has more to do with the divisive rhetoric and the enabling of conspiracy theories and widening the divide in this country," Doolittle told The Washington Post.

Doolittle found support from Larry Stokes of Boyds, Maryland, citing Trump's stand on immigrants. "They're playing this game, but he doesn't like immigrants," Stokes said.

But to fan Bridget Chapin, who came from Burke, Virginia, with her husband, Mark, "Regardless of how you feel, you go to the Oval Office. I'm really weary of athletes making political statements. I watch sports to get away from all that."

The president attended Game 5 in Washington and was greeted with loud boos when he was shown on the giant video screen during a tribute to veterans. The boos more than overwhelmed a scattering of cheers.

Delores Smith of Washington, a longtime baseball fan who said she had an uncle who pitched in the Negro Leagues, said the World Series was "a big win" for the city. "This is the first time in a long time that I've seen the whole city come together. There's no fussing about Trump."

Even with the threat of stars leaving for free agency — as outfielder Bryce Harper did after 2018 — fans hoped the Nationals' success would continue.

"I don't think it's going to be our last time. This team, even when our last superstar left, this team rallied around, they played as a team," Larry Stokes said.

Fans — and shortstop Trea Turner — urged the Nationals to re-sign third baseman Anthony Rendon, who was greeted with chants of MVP.


Nationals top Astros in Game 7 to win 1st World Series title

The Washington Nationals celebrate after Game 7 of the baseball World Series against the Houston Astros Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, in Houston. The Nationals won 6-2 to win the series. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

 Washington Nationals' Max Scherzer celebrates after Game 7 of the baseball World Series against the Houston Astros Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, in Houston. The Nationals won 6-2 to win the series. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

By BEN WALKER

HOUSTON (AP) — Stephen Strasburg paraded the MVP trophy for delirious fans packed behind the dugout. Max Scherzer tearfully hugged his teammates. Gerardo Parra did the Baby Shark chop, Sean Doolittle flapped snow angels next to the mound.

Almost out of contention in May, champs in October.

Howie Kendrick, Anthony Rendon and the Washington Nationals completed their amazing comeback journey — fittingly with one last late rally on the road.

In Game 7 of the World Series, no less.

Kendrick and Rendon homered in the seventh inning as the Nationals overcame a two-run deficit, rocking the Houston Astros 6-2 Wednesday night to win the first title in franchise history.

With all eyes on Scherzer and his remarkable recovery after a painkilling injection, these Nationals truly embraced their shot in the only Series when the road team won every game.

Even more against the odds: Juan Soto and Washington came from behind to win five elimination games this postseason, an unprecedented feat.

"What a story," said Ryan Zimmerman, the only player who's been a part of every Nationals team.

"The way this game went is the way our whole season went."

Strasburg, new lefty Patrick Corbin and the Nats brought the first World Series championship to the nation's capital since ol' Walter Johnson delivered the crown for the Senators in 1924.

This franchise started out as the Montreal Expos in 1969 when the major leagues expanded beyond the border, putting a team with tricolor caps at jaunty Jarry Park. They moved to D.C. in 2005, ending Washington's three-decade-plus wait for big league baseball after the Senators skipped town to become the Texas Rangers.

But the incredible path these wild-card Nationals with the curly W logo took, well, no one could have imagined.

Because in one topsy-turvy week, they put aside the pain of past playoff failures and upended heavily favored Houston. Quite an ending to a season that began back in February with the Nationals and Astros working out side-by-side at the spring training complex they share in Florida.

"Resilient, relentless bunch of guys," manager Dave Martinez said. "They fought all year long."

Having lost star slugger Bryce Harper in free agency and beset by bullpen woes, Washington plummeted to 19-31 in late May. It got so bad there was talk the Nationals might fire Martinez and trade away Scherzer.

Instead, they stuck with the mantra that sprung up on T-shirts — Stay In The Fight.

"That was our motto," Scherzer said.

And months later they finished it, indeed.

Shut out on one hit by Zack Greinke going into the seventh, they still found a way to win.

"Guess what? We stayed in the fight. We won the fight!" Martinez shouted during the trophy celebration on the field.

"We were down and out. We were 19-31. We didn't quit then, we weren't going to quit now," he said.

Strasburg earned the World Series MVP award with a pair of wins, including Game 6.

"It's almost like we've done it so many times that we have to get punched in the face to kind of wake up," he said.

As pitcher Aníbal Sánchez told Scherzer while hugging him in the middle of the diamond: "We won one. We finally won one."

For the 43,326 revved-up fans at Minute Maid Park, it was a combination of shock and disappointment. So close to seeing José Altuve, Alex Bregman, George Springer and their Astros add to the title they won in Game 7 at Dodger Stadium two years ago, they watched this chance suddenly vanish.

"I've got a group of heartbroken men in there that did everything they could to try to bring a World Series championship to this city. And we fell one win shy," Astros manager AJ Hinch said.

"Let's be honest, there's 28 other teams that would love to have our misery today," he said. "And I just told our team, it's hard to put into words and remember all the good that happened because right now we feel as bad as you can possibly feel," he added.

President Donald Trump, greeted with chants of "Lock him up!" when he attended Game 5 in Washington, tweeted his congratulations to the Nationals from the White House.

"Game 7 was amazing!" Trump tweeted.

Washington kept pulling away after taking the lead, with the sensational Soto hitting an RBI single in the eighth and Adam Eaton adding a two-run single in the ninth off rookie José Urquidy.

Acquired from Arizona at the July trade deadline, Greinke was in complete control until Rendon — a Houston prep and college star — hit a solo homer with one out in the seventh that trimmed it to 2-1.

"Just gave us a little bit of hope," Nationals leadoff man Trea Turner said.

When Soto followed with a one-out walk, Hinch decided to make a move. He'd had ace starter Gerrit Cole warming up earlier, but left him in the bullpen.

"I wasn't going to pitch him unless we were going to win the World Series and have a lead," Hinch said. "He was going to close the game in the ninth."

Instead, Hinch signaled for reliable reliever Will Harris.

Kendrick connected on the second pitch, slicing a drive that hit the screen attached to the right field foul pole for a 3-2 lead. Just like that, everything had changed for the team in orange that led the majors with 107 regular-season wins, and the ballpark fell silent.

For Kendrick, another timely blow. At 36, playing on the oldest team in the majors, he was the NL Championship Series MVP against St. Louis after hitting the winning grand slam in the 10th inning of the deciding Game 5 in the Division Series at Dodger Stadium.

Then again, this was nothing new for the Nationals.

Washington rallied in the eighth to beat Milwaukee in the wild-card game and took the last two to beat Los Angeles in the NLDS, setting up a sweep of the Cardinals in the NLCS.

"This is now the most 2019 Nats thing to ever happen," Doolittle said. "Another elimination game, another come-from-behind win."

Far away, a sizable crowd poured into Nationals Park for a watch party. That was the stadium where Houston hammered the Nats for three games last weekend in taking a 3-2 edge, but their luck changed in Texas.

They won the last two against a team that posted the best home record in the majors (60-21) over the last two decades. Houston earned home-field advantage throughout the postseason, but it didn't help in the end as the Astros went a stunning 0-4 in their own ballpark during the Series.

Martinez said Soto, who turned 21 last week, celebrated with his first beer. Meanwhile, the skipper, who had a heart procedure six weeks ago and can't resume his six-cups-a-day coffee habit, headed back to the clubhouse for a special treat.

"I am," he said, "going to smoke a cigar."

With Greinke and Scherzer grunting on every pitch, Game 7 started as a classic duel.

Yuli Gurriel put the Astros ahead with a home run in the second and Carlos Correa added an RBI single off Scherzer that made it 2-0 in the fifth.

Scherzer was done after the fifth. Only a few days earlier, the three-time Cy Young Award winner had been unable to lift his right arm due to nerve irritation near his neck.

Corbin, the $140 million starter, threw three scoreless innings in relief.

Daniel Hudson, released by the Angels in March, closed for the Nationals, who made Houston pay for stranding so many runners all game. Hudson struck out Michael Brantley for the last out, then threw his glove to start the celebration.

The Astros breezed to the AL West title, edged Tampa Bay in a five-game ALDS and topped the Yankees in the ALCS. They had a front-office fiasco in October, which led to the firing of an executive for a boorish rant at female reporters during a clubhouse celebration.

"Yeah, the ultimate goal is to win the World Series, and we fell short to a great team. You can't hang your head low about that," Springer said. "You move on and start getting ready for spring training."

GOING WILD

The Nationals became the first wild-card team to win the Series since Madison Bumgarner and the Giants in 2014. The last six champs have clinched on the road.

UP NEXT

The Astros and Nationals open exhibition play with a World Series rematch on Feb. 22 at Ballpark of the Palm Beaches. They met in their Grapefruit League opener this year and Scherzer gave up a home run to the first batter of the game.


Arsenal, PSG, Glasgow into Women's Champions League last-8

Arsenal's Louise Quinn, left and Slavia Praha's Laura Zemberyova vie for the ball, during the Women's Champions League round of 16 second leg soccer match between Arsenal and Slavia Praha, at Meadow Park, in Borehamwood, England, Thursday, Oct. 31, 2019. (Tess Derry/PA via AP)

LONDON (AP) — Vivianne Miedema and Danielle van de Donk both scored hat tricks as Arsenal beat Slavia Prague 8-0 on Thursday to advance to the Women's Champions League quarterfinals 13-2 on aggregate.

Kim Little also netted from a penalty and Jill Roord scored in the first half.

Adding to her four goals in the first leg, Miedema now has 52 goals in 50 starts for Arsenal, the last English team in the competition after Manchester City's exit to Atletico Madrid on Wednesday.

But Scottish champion Glasgow City is through to the last eight after beating Brondby in the competition's first penalty shootout in a two-legged game for five years.

Glasgow's 2-0 lead from the first leg was wiped out by the Danish visitors in regulation time before goalkeeper Lee Alexander saved twice in the shootout and Jo Love sealed a 3-1 win on penalties.

Also Thursday, Paris Saint-Germain beat Icelandic side Breidablik 3-1 to advance 7-1 on aggregate.

Also in the quarterfinal draw are defending champion Lyon, Barcelona, Wolfsburg and Bayern Munich.


Australia beats Sri Lanka by 9 wickets to clinch T20 series

Sri Lanka's Lasith Malinga, left, celebrates the wicket of Australia's Aaron Finch during their T20 cricket match in Brisbane, Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019. (Darren England/AAP Image via AP)

BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — Steve Smith and David Warner steered Australia to a nine-wicket victory over Sri Lanka and a 2-0 Twenty20 series win on Wednesday.

Needing only 118 runs for victory, Smith (53 from 36) and Warner (60 from 41) combined in their first partnership for Australia on home soil since the 2017 Boxing Day test to give the hosts victory with 41 balls to spare.

Australia beat Sri Lanka by 134 runs in the first match of the series in Adelaide on Sunday. The teams play the third and final match on Friday in Melbourne.

Billy Stanlake, 2-23 from four overs, led Australia on his home ground, while Pat Cummins, Ashton Agar and Adam Zampa also picked up two wickets each.

Sri Lanka won the toss and chose to bat, scoring 117 runs in its innings.

Warner's total followed his unbeaten first-game century.

"It's exciting for us, exciting for the public as well just to watch him play T20 cricket," Stanlake said of Smith's highest T20 total at home. "They don't get to see him do that too much. He's an absolute class player, we saw how good he was tonight again."

Stanlake made the most of his call-up with Mitchell Starc granted leave to attend his brother's wedding.

Sri Lanka assistant coach Rumesh Ratnayake said the team needed to fix its attitude ahead of Friday's match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

"Disappointed is too nice a word I think ... I'm gutted really," the 23-test veteran said. "We're going to rectify it, revisit it in meetings and see what went wrong but it's intent which I feel was not there."

Australia will host Pakistan in a three-match T20 series beginning Sunday in Sydney.


European soccer weekend: What to watch in the main leagues

Arsenal's David Luiz, front left, celebrates with teammates after scoring his side's second goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Crystal Palace at the Emirates stadium in London, Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019. (AP Photo/Leila Coker)

By Associated Press

What to watch in the leading football leagues in Europe this weekend:

ENGLAND

Arsenal hosts Wolverhampton on Saturday after sliding to fifth in the Premier League by collecting only one point from its last two games. That came from a draw against Crystal Palace after throwing away a lead and seeing captain Granit Xhaka run into dispute with his own Arsenal fans.

North London rival Tottenham is faring even worse, traveling back to Merseyside on Sunday to play Everton after losing at Liverpool a week earlier to remain winless on the road in the league since January and in 11th place.

Leader Liverpool is at Aston Villa on Saturday holding a six-point lead over champion Manchester City, which hosts Southampton. The south-coast club was thrashed 9-0 in the last round by Leicester, which is flying high in third place.

The 11th round opens with Manchester United only ahead of opponent Bournemouth on goal difference and 15 points behind Liverpool in seventh place.

— By Rob Harris in London.

SPAIN

With Lionel Messi coming off his best performance of the season, Barcelona is at Levante on Saturday chasing a sixth consecutive league win.

Messi scored twice and had two assists in the champion's 5-1 rout of Valladolid on Tuesday. Barcelona is one point in front of Real Madrid at the top of the standings.

Barcelona and Real Madrid have a game in hand because their "clásico" match scheduled for last weekend was postponed until December because of a separatist rally in the Catalan capital.

Real Madrid, which routed Leganés 5-0 on Wednesday, hosts Real Betis on Saturday when fourth-place Atlético Madrid visits fifth-place Sevilla.

Surprise performer Granada, Atlético and Sevilla are two points behind Barcelona. Granada hosts sixth-place Real Sociedad on Sunday.

— By Tales Azzoni in Madrid

FRANCE

Edinson Cavani could make his first start since late August when league leader Paris Saint-Germain travels to struggling Dijon on Friday.

He needs just five more goals to reach 200 for PSG and, if selected ahead of Mauro Icardi, the club's all-time leading scorer will be confident of getting chances against the league's last-place side.

Cavani came on as a substitute in Sunday's 4-0 home win against Marseille but has not started a game since sustaining a hip injury on Aug. 25.

However, PSG coach Thomas Tuchel will be without injured midfielders Marco Verratti (calf) and Ander Herrera (ankle), while center half Thiago Silva is ill and has also been left out.

Although PSG has already lost two league games, there is little competition at the top and the defending champion has an eight-point lead over second-place Nantes.

Boosted by an 8-0 home win in the League Cup on Wednesday night, Nantes travels to play Bordeaux on Sunday.

Third-place Lille is one point behind Nantes and on Saturday is away at Marseille, which has won only one of its past seven matches.

— By Jerome Pugmire in Paris.

ITALY

Juventus is unbeaten ahead of the Turin derby against Torino at the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday.

Roma and Napoli are both on five-match unbeaten runs ahead of Saturday's lunchtime meeting, but experiencing mixed fortunes. While Roma has gained confidence and climbed to fourth under new coach Paulo Fonseca, Napoli has sunk to sixth.

Second-place Inter Milan visits Bologna on Saturday and struggling AC Milan hosts Lazio the following day.

—By Andrew Dampf in Rome.

GERMANY

Promoted Union Berlin hosts Hertha Berlin in the highlight of the German league's 10th round on Saturday. It's the first meeting of the capital's biggest clubs in the Bundesliga and it comes one week before the city celebrates 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Union warmed up with a 3-1 win at Freiburg in the German Cup on Tuesday, while Hertha has a day less to recover after a penalty shootout win over Dynamo Dresden on Wednesday.

The clubs previously enjoyed a friendly relationship going back to when the city was divided, but the rivalry has developed in recent years, particularly since the sides competed in the second division.

League leader Borussia Mönchengladbach visits Bayer Leverkusen, also Saturday, when defending champion Bayern Munich visits coach Niko Kovac's former side Eintracht Frankfurt and Borussia Dortmund hosts Wolfsburg, the only unbeaten side remaining in the league.

Also Saturday, Leipzig welcomes Mainz and Freiburg visits Werder Bremen.

— By Ciarán Fahey in Berlin.
 


DAILY UPDATE

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