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.



SALVADOR, Brazil — For a full 90 minutes, Belgium's almost relentless attack added up to nothing in the face of Tim Howard.

Only in extra time was the superb United States goalkeeper finally beaten.

Kevin De Bruyne turned Howard's heroic night into defeat on Tuesday when he scored an extra-time goal and then set up Romelu Lukaku for another to give Belgium a 2-1 victory over the Americans. By Raf Casert. SENT: 681 words, photos.


SAO PAULO — Angel Di Maria scored deep into extra time Tuesday to give Argentina a 1-0 win over Switzerland and a spot in the World Cup quarterfinals. With a penalty shootout looming, Lionel Messi made a surging run toward the Swiss area in the 118th minute and laid the ball off to Di Maria on the right. By Karl Ritter. SENT: 660 words, photos.



SALVADOR, Brazil — They captured the eyes and hearts of a suddenly awakened soccer nation, who gathered in unprecedented numbers to watch the world's game. But the end of the ride came at the exact same point as four years ago: with a loss in extra time in the World Cup's round of 16. By Ronald Blum. 745 words, photos.


RIO DE JANEIRO — The World Cup still has Lionel Messi. Tim Howard is heading home despite an impressive display of goalkeeping.

A moment of Messi inspiration helped lift an unconvincing Argentina to a 1-0 win over Switzerland after extra time in the Round of 16 on Tuesday, creating the goal scored by Angel Di Maria in the 118th minute. By Graham Dunbar. SENT: 838 words, photos.


SAO PAULO — Switzerland's 1-0 loss to Argentina Tuesday was likely the last game of coach Ottmar Hitzfeld's long career and capped an emotional 24 hours for the German-born coach following the death of his older brother. Prior to the game, team spokesman Marco von Ah said Hitzfeld was "very sad" but was determined to stay with the team for its crucial game against the two-time world champions, which it lost after a goal in the 118th minute. By Aron Heller. SENT: 361 words, photos.


SAO PAULO — Lionel Messi fell, then jumped back to his feet with a little help from the gentlemanly Swiss player who had knocked him down. This happened all afternoon, because Argentina is still a one-man show at this World Cup attracting all of every opponent's attention. Tackled, pushed or fouled practically each time he touched the ball, the feisty 5-foot-5 forward forcefully hit the ground again and again. By Janie McCauley. SENT: 619 words, photos.


SAO PAULO — Angel di Maria's first goal of this World Cup couldn't have come at a better time for Argentina, or for himself.

Overshadowed by the efforts of captain Lionel Messi, the winger showed his importance to the team on Tuesday and came through when Argentina really needed him. By Frank Griffiths. SENT: 402 words, photos.


SAO PAULO — Ottmar Hitzfeld boldly promised his Switzerland squad would slow down Lionel Messi, and he nearly kept his word. For 118 minutes in the second round of the World Cup, the feisty Swiss squad frustrated the Argentine superstar. But with a penalty shootout looming, Messi broke free and set up the winner for Angel Di Maria, giving Argentina a 1-0 win in extra time. By Aron Heller. SENT: 484 words, photos.


SALVADOR, Brazil — Romelu Lukaku had a point to prove at the World Cup. After Belgium missed countless chances during the 90 minutes of regulation time in the second-round match against the United States on Tuesday, the powerful striker came off the bench and soon set up the opening goal for Kevin De Bruyne. By Dusan Stojanovic. SENT.


RIO DE JANEIRO — A convicted match-fixer denied a report in a German magazine Tuesday that he predicted the result and details of a World Cup football match. Cameroon's football federation said it was investigating the report in der Spiegel magazine that Wilson Raj Perumal accurately predicted in an online chat with one of its journalists that Cameroon would lose 4-0 to Croatia and would have a player sent off in the first half. By Gerald Imray and John Leicester. SENT: 592 words.


RIBEIRAO PRETO, Brazil — France coach Didier Deschamps has never lost a World Cup match, and his experience tells him that winning Friday's quarterfinal against Germany will come down to guts. Deschamps captained France to its only World Cup title in 1998, when the side was unbeaten, and he was again captain two years later when it won the European Championship. By Jerome Pugmire. SENT: 573 words, photos.


TERESOPOLIS, Brazil — Luiz Felipe Scolari is contemplating adding another central defender to Brazil's lineup against Colombia in the World Cup quarterfinals on Friday, going back to the formation that earned his team the 2002 title. The Brazil coach has to make at least one change because midfielder Luiz Gustavo is suspended, and says he has a couple of options to replace him. By Tales Azzoni. SENT: 393 words, photos.


RIO DE JANEIRO — Netherlands midfielder Nigel de Jong's World Cup appears to be over after tests confirmed he has a tear in his groin muscle and will be sidelined for 2-to-4 weeks. The Dutch football association said Tuesday that an MRI scan revealed the injury, almost certainly ruling one of the Dutch team's top performers out of the tournament. By Mike Corder. SENT: 477 words, photos.


VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis' loyalties are being tested with Argentina's match against Switzerland at the World Cup on Tuesday. A cartoon posted on the Twitter feed of the Vatican's social communications office showed the Argentine-born pontiff wearing a blue and white Argentina scarf over his white cassock, watching on glumly as a pair of beer-swilling Swiss Guards watch the match on TV. SENT: 112 words.