A game of two popes: Vatican plays down talk of World Cup rivalry

VATICAN CITY - With Argentina meeting Germany in the World Cup final, the Vatican on Friday brushed aside talk of soccer rivalry between Argentine Pope Francis and his predecessor Benedict, a German.

Recent Sports News

Balotelli courts more controversy with gun photo

ROME, July 11 – Italy striker Mario Balotelli has stoked more controversy by publishing a picture of himself on Instagram pointing a gun at the camera with the message "a big kiss to all the haters".

Italy 8:16am EDT

Yankees' Tanaka has small elbow ligament tear

- New York Yankees' starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka has been diagnosed with a partially torn ligament in his right elbow and could be out of the game for about six weeks, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said on Thursday.

10 Jul 2014

Diving-Former Olympic champion Newbery pleads guilty to drug charge

- Australia's former Olympic champion diver Chantelle Newbery has pled guilty to drug charges, local media reported on Friday.

2:24am EDT

Mayweather set for Maidana re-match in September

- Undefeated welterweight Floyd Mayweather Jr., widely regarded as the world's top pound-for-pound boxer, announced on Thursday that he will return to the ring in September for a re-match with Argentina's Marcos Maidana.

10 Jul 2014

'Relaxed' Monty sets U.S. Senior Open pace with 65

- Britain's Colin Montgomerie, making the most of a "relaxed" grouping, birdied four of his last seven holes to seize a one-shot lead in the opening round of the U.S. Senior Open in Edmond, Oklahoma on Thursday.

10 Jul 2014

Argentina and Germany start final preparations

RIO DE JANEIRO - Argentina and Germany were both back at work on Thursday, secretly hatching their plans for Sunday's World Cup final at the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro.


Argentina beat Dutch in shootout to set up Germany final

RIO DE JANEIRO - Argentina reached their first World Cup final in 24 years on Wednesday, beating the Netherlands 4-2 on penalties after the first scoreless semi in the tournament's history, with old foes Germany awaiting them in Sunday's showpiece.


Suarez loses appeal against biting ban

RIO DE JANEIRO - Uruguay forward Luis Suarez, banned from all soccer activity for four months and nine competitive internationals for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup match, has lost his appeal, FIFA said on Thursday.


Tour de France underway

Cyclists chase the yellow jersey in the race across France.


Brazil fans weep

Brazil fans react to their World Cup defeat.