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 By Tim Vickery

Brazil, Argentina fight for one U-20 World Cup spot after uneven showing

Brazil and Argentina drew to leave them reliant on other results if they're to reach the U-20 World Cup.

So it is down to the big two as the South American Under-20 Championships moves towards Saturday's final round. Uruguay have qualified for this year's U-20 World Cup, scheduled for South Korea at the end of May. Hosts Ecuador and Venezuela are virtually assured of joining them, leaving one slot available for either Brazil or Argentina.

That is the consequence of Wednesday's 2-2 draw between the old rivals. It must have been one of the poorest games played at any level between these continent's...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Venezuela striker Josef Martinez joins Atlanta United as designated player

Josef Martinez has moved to MLS to join Atlanta United.

Atlanta United signed forward Josef Martinez on loan from Serie A side Torino on Thursday and made him the club's third designated player.

The deal includes an option for the new MLS club to sign the 23-year-old permanently. He joins Hector Villalba and Miguel Almiron as DPs in Atlanta.

Martinez has played for Torino for the past three seasons, scoring 13 goals in 76 league appearances.

Brian McBride picks his early favourites to win the MLS Eastern and Western conferences for the 2017 season.

"I'm very happy to be here, this is a great project," Martinez said in a statement. "I was able to see the training...

 By Tim Vickery

48-team World Cup could negatively affect South American qualifying

Gab Marcotti and Shaka Hislop join Outside the Lines and have their say at FIFA expanding the World Cup to 48 teams.
Gab Marcotti joins Outside the Lines to discuss the reasons behind moving the World Cup from 32 to 48 teams in 2026.
Shaka Hislop expresses his disapproval at FIFA's decision to expand the World Cup to 48 teams.

On the website of CONMEBOL, the South American Confederation, there is an article entitled: "From 13 teams in Uruguay 1930 to 48 in the 2026 World Cup."

It is a neat way of reminding everyone of one of the great trump cards of the South American game: its fabulous tradition. This is the continent where the World Cup began and which has won nine versions of the tournament, divided between Brazil (five wins) and Uruguay and Argentina (two apiece).

The big three has provided Barcelona with the "MSN"...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

FIFA gives Chile and Romania stadium bans, fines many Latin American FAs

Poland's Robert Lewandowski was caught in the explosion of fireworks in a game at Romania last month.

Chile and Romania have received stadium bans from FIFA, as the world governing body issued fines to a number of national football associations on Monday, including many for anti-gay chants in Latin America.

FIFA ruled that Chile will not be allowed to play their next two World Cup qualifiers at their home stadium in Santiago, while also giving out fines to Chile, Argentina, Colombia, Venezuela, Mexico and Panama "for various incidents involving unsporting conduct by fans, including homophobic chants...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Marlone, Daniuska Rodriguez, Mohd Faiz Subri up for FIFA Puskas award

Corinthians attacking midfielder Marlone, Daniuska Rodriguez and Mohd Faiz Subri are the three nominees for the FIFA Puskas award 2016 for the best goal of the year.

The three-player shortlist was whittled down from an original 10 goals, with the winner to be announced on Jan. 9, 2017.

Lionel Messi's long free kick in Argentina's Copa America 4-0 semifinal victory over the United States and Neymar's flick and volley for Barcelona against Villarreal were not included.