The AP World Cup Digest at 10 p.m. EDT (0200 GMT). The supervisor of the World Cup desk in Rio de Janeiro is Simon Haydon. The desk can be reached at 0055 21 348 264 84.
RIO DE JANEIRO — FIFA has banned Uruguay striker Luis Suarez from all football activities for four months for biting an opponent at the World Cup, ruling him out of the rest of the tournament and the start of the upcoming Premier League season. 130 words. SENT. Will be updated.
RECIFE, Brazil — Germany and the United States meet for their final game in Group G, knowing that a draw will qualify both teams for the second round. A win for either side would mean finishing top of the group, while the loser could be eliminated — depending on the result of Ghana’s game against Portugal. By Nesha Starcevic. UPCOMING: 650 words by 2 p.m. EDT/1800 GMT.
BRASILIA, Brazil — Is this the end for Cristiano Ronaldo at the World Cup? Ronaldo’s Portugal and Ghana both need a win, and realistically a big victory for Germany over United States in Group F’s other match being played simultaneously, to sneak a place in the knockout stage. By Steve Douglas. UPCOMING: 650 words by 2 p.m. EDT/1800 GMT.
CURITIBA, Brazil — Algeria takes on Russia in their final Group H match knowing that a win would guarantee it a place in the second round for the first time ever. A draw would probably be enough too. Only a win for Russia will do and even then it will rely on the outcome of the Belgium vs South Korea match. By Pan Pylas. UPCOMING: 500 words by 7 p.m EDT/2200 GMT.
SAO PAULO — South Korea is hoping for a miracle to beat Belgium and still be able to advance to the second round of the World Cup. Belgium only wants to make sure it wins Group H with at least a draw. By Raf Casert. By 1900 EDT/2200 GMT.
RIO DE JANEIRO —Colombia was already without injured Radamel Falcao. Now Uruguay is without Luis Suarez. Instead of a matchup between two of the world’s top strikers, the round-of-16 game between Colombia and Uruguay at the World Cup will be a test of which team copes best without its talisman. By Mattias Karen. UPCOMING. By noon EDT/1600 GMT.
BRASILIA, Brazil — Ghana threw Sulley Muntari and Kevin-Prince Boateng out of its World Cup squad for disciplinary reasons on Thursday, plunging the African team into further chaos ahead of its decisive group-stage match against Portugal. By Steve Douglas. SENT: 535 words.
RIO DE JANEIRO — After an overnight flight from the United States, Greg Thomas swigged a beer Wednesday afternoon on a sidewalk near Rio’s famed Maracana stadium and raised his arm high into the air with four fingers displayed to attract scalpers who might sell him and three friends tickets to get into the Ecuador-France World Cup game. By Alan Clendenning. 761 words. SENT.
RIO DE JANEIRO — The taste of soccer glory is still fresh for Andre Rodrigues de Principe, even as his moment of fame fades and he watches friends catch the eyes of scouts and coaches. By Joshua Goodman. SENT: 919 words.
RIO DE JANEIRO — Arjen Robben just seems to get quicker and quicker. The 30-year-old winger has out-sprinted every defender he has faced at the World Cup and is scoring goals, too. By Mike Corder. UPCOMING: 400 words by 1400. AP photos.
RIBEIRAO PRETO, Brazil - France’s 0-0 draw against a battling Ecuador side took some gloss off what has been a strong World Cup start from a France side now considered one of the outsiders to win the tournament. But coach Didier Deschamps’ players will need to be more clinical in front of goal against Nigeria in next week’s last 16 match. Upcoming: 1 p.m. EDT/1700 GMT. 600 words. By Jerome Pugmire.
TERESOPOLIS, Brazil — The knockout stage of the World Cup begins Saturday with host Brazil playing Chile, the South American rival it has dominated over the years. Brazil is hoping for another triumph to stay on track for the title at home, while Chile is looking to prove that it finally has what it takes to pull off an upset against the five-time world champions. SENT: 600 words, photos.
PORTO ALEGRE — Nigeria celebrates becoming the first African nation to qualify for the knockout phase of the World Cup but is already looking forward to its next opponents, France. The coach’s asssement?: “Beatable.” By Chris Brummitt. By 2 p.m. EDT/1800 GMT.
BELO HORIZONTE, Brazil — Chile will hold a news conference at its training camp. By Frank Griffiths. UPCOMING: 400 words by 2 p.m. EDT/1800 GMT. With AP Photos.
— RIO DE JANEIRO — WCUP-WHAT TO WATCH. SENT. By Mattias Karen.
— RIO DE JANEIRO — WCUP-BRAZIL BEAT. SENT.
__ RIO DE JANEIRO — WCUP-THURSDAY PERMUTATIONS. SENT.
__ NATAL, Brazil — SOC-WCUP-CAPSULES. SENT.
__ RIO DE JANEIRO — WCUP-REFEREE APPOINTMENTS. SENT.
— UNDATED — WORLD CUP GLANCE. SENT.
— UNDATED — WCUP-ON THIS DAY. SENT.