• BC-AP--AP Sports Digest, AP





    MADRID _ With an equalizer in stoppage time, Spain earned the point it needed against Sweden to qualify for the 2020 European Championship on Tuesday, while Ireland missed its chance to seal a spot in next year's tournament by losing to Switzerland. Already qualified Italy routed Liechtenstein 5-0 for a record-equaling ninth straight win. By Tales Azzoni. SENT: 650 words, photos.



    UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin urged governments to escalate the "war on the racists" to help soccer authorities eliminate them from stadiums after England players faced abuse in Bulgaria. In a statement to The Associated Press on Tuesday, Ceferin blamed a rise in nationalism across Europe for fueling racism at matches and said UEFA was committed to imposing strong punishments. By Rob Harris. SENT: 900 words, photos.


    SOFIA, Bulgaria _ Criticized around Europe for the racist behavior of Bulgarian fans and under pressure from the country's prime minister following a run of poor results, the president of the country's soccer federation resigned on Tuesday. A few hours later, Bulgarian special police forces raided the federation offices. SENT: 500 words, photos.


    GENEVA _ Switzerland regained control of its European Championship qualifying destiny by beating outmanned Ireland 2-0 in the tight Group D on Tuesday. Haris Seferovic gave the Swiss a deserved early lead with a low shot from just outside the area. With the last kick of the game, an own goal by Shane Duffy settled an often testy game on a ragged, rain-soaked Stade de Geneve pitch. By Graham Dunbar. SENT: 400 words.


    VADUZ, Liechtenstein _ An inexperienced Italy side eased to a 5-0 win at Liechtenstein in a European Championship qualifier on Tuesday to equal the record number of consecutive wins for the Azzurri. Andrea Belotti scored twice while Federico Bernardeschi, Alessio Romagnoli and Stephan El Shaarawy added a goal apiece to help Italy to its ninth successive win, equaling the record set between 1938-39. SENT: 400 words, photos.


    SEOUL, South Korea _ North Korea held South Korea to a 0-0 draw Tuesday in a World Cup qualifying soccer match played in an empty stadium in Pyongyang. Specific details of the game weren't immediately available. South Korean soccer officials were unable to watch a telecast of the historic game at Kim Il Sung Stadium and South Korean spectators and media were denied entry. By Kim Tong-Hyung. 900 words.



    LeBron James has stepped into the spotlight of the now-strained relationship between the NBA and China with his comments about the league executive who started the ongoing fallout with his “misinformed” tweet. Politicians and human rights groups have criticized the outspoken superstar, questioning the motivation of James’ comments. By Tim Reynolds and Greg Beachman. SENT: 750 words.



    ANTWERP, Belgium _ Andy Murray won a tour-level match in Europe for the first time in 16 months Tuesday as he beat Belgian wild card Kimmer Coppejans 6-4, 7-6 (4) at the European Open. SENT: 250 words.

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