Mexico and the United States shared the points in a tense 0-0 draw in Thursday's CONCACAF World Cup qualifier in Mexico City.

A victory for either side would have put them on the brink of qualification, but both will need to wait, with the result leaving United States and Mexico in second and third positions respectively with two matches remaining.

Costa Rica moved into fourth spot after their 1-0 win over CONCACAF leaders Canada - who missed out on sealing their spot for Qatar - with the Ticos now three points behind US and Mexico who are locked on 22 points.

In a game where Mexico had a lion's share of possession, it was the Americans creating the best of the chances, with Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa looking spry at 36 years young.

Ochoa was called upon in the 14th minute to deny Yunus Musah, and again in the 36th minute to thwart Christian Pulisic to keep things deadlocked heading into half-time.

Pulisic had another chance just minutes into the second half, but his sharp chance was kept out by Ochoa as he finished the match with four saves. Hirving Lozano had a pair of chances for Mexico in the second half, but sent one over in the 57th minute, and one into the crossbar in the 80th minute.

US's final game away to Costa Rica on Wednesday is shaping up to have plenty on the line. The top three CONCACAF qualifiers will move on to the World Cup, while fourth-placed side will need to go through a play-off.

Mexico and the United States shared the points in a tense 0-0 draw in Thursday's CONCACAF World Cup qualifier in Mexico City.

A victory for either side would have put them on the brink of qualification, but both will need to wait, with the result leaving United States and Mexico in second and third positions respectively with two matches remaining.

Costa Rica moved into fourth spot after their 1-0 win over CONCACAF leaders Canada - who missed out on sealing their spot for Qatar - with the Ticos now three points behind US and Mexico who are locked on 22 points.

In a game where Mexico had a lion's share of possession, it was the Americans creating the best of the chances, with Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa looking spry at 36 years young.

Ochoa was called upon in the 14th minute to deny Yunus Musah, and again in the 36th minute to thwart Christian Pulisic to keep things deadlocked heading into half-time.

Pulisic had another chance just minutes into the second half, but his sharp chance was kept out by Ochoa as he finished the match with four saves. Hirving Lozano had a pair of chances for Mexico in the second half, but sent one over in the 57th minute, and one into the crossbar in the 80th minute.

US's final game away to Costa Rica on Wednesday is shaping up to have plenty on the line. The top three CONCACAF qualifiers will move on to the World Cup, while fourth-placed side will need to go through a play-off.

Naomi Osaka is through to the third round of the Miami Open after beating former world number one Angelique Kerber in straight sets.

Osaka won the first three games of the match to jump out to an early lead, securing the set with a double-break before breaking early in the second to cruise to a 6-2 6-3 win.

The story of the match was Osaka's ease in winning points against Kerber's serve, winning 41 per cent (15/37) of Kerber's successful first serves, while the German could only win 11 per cent (3/27) in the same category.

Britain's top-ranked woman Emma Raducanu suffered another early exit, on the wrong end of Katerina Siniakova's comeback 3-6 6-4 7-5 win.

Gareth Bale described the criticism he has been the subject of as a Real Madrid player as "disgusting" after leading Wales into a World Cup play-off final.

Bale has played in just five of Madrid's 42 matches in all competitions this season, totalling 270 minutes on the field – the equivalent of three whole games.

Once the most expensive player in world football, the winger was absent for Madrid's most recent match, a painful 4-0 defeat to bitter rivals Barcelona.

However, Bale was back and back to his best when Wales came calling on Thursday.

The 32-year-old captained his country to a 2-1 win against Austria in their play-off semi-final, scoring two sublime goals – the first a breathtaking free-kick.

Bale appeared to play through the pain barrier in a brilliant display, eventually making way while holding his groin.

The former Tottenham man appeared to enjoy the celebrations, but his tone shifted slightly when asked if he had a message for his critics in Spain.

"No," he told Sky Sports. "I don't need to send a message, honestly. It's a waste of my time.

"It's disgusting, they should all be ashamed of themselves. I'm not fussed. End of."

Bale has come into form at a great time for Wales, scoring five goals in his past four international appearances – more than in his previous 28 games for his country (four).

In European qualifying for the 2022 World Cup, only five players have been involved in more goals than Bale's eight (five goals, three assists).

Wales will play either Scotland or Ukraine for a place in Qatar, with that decider at home, where Bale and Co. are unbeaten in 17 games in all competitions.

Deshaun Watson was not charged by a second grand jury after it considered evidence of sexual assault and misconduct allegations.

The Cleveland Browns quarterback faces 22 civil lawsuits.

However, earlier in March, Harris County jurors did not find enough evidence for criminal proceedings, and Watson was again not indicted on Thursday after a Brazoria County grand jury also assessed the case.

"After a careful and thorough review of the facts and evidence documented in the reports prepared by the Brazoria County Sheriff's Office and the Houston Police Department, as well as hearing testimony from witnesses, the grand jury for Brazoria County has declined to charge Deshaun Watson with any crimes," Brazoria County District Attorney Tom Selleck said in a statement.

"Accordingly, this matter is closed."

Watson has strenuously denied the accusations since they emerged last year, overshadowing his attempts to push for a trade away from the Houston Texans.

He got his move to Cleveland after the first grand jury did not charge him.

Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said last week: "Our organisation did a tremendous amount of background on Deshaun.

"We understand the concerns and questions that exist but are confident in the extensive work Andrew [Berry, executive vice-president of football operations and general manager] and his staff have done to feel confident about him joining our organisation."

Ecuador qualified for the 2022 World Cup on Thursday despite a 3-1 defeat to Paraguay, benefiting from a victory for Uruguay that also sent the two-time champions to Qatar.

La Tri, who failed to make Russia 2018, knew they needed only a point to be sure of a top-four finish with a game to spare.

However, already-eliminated Paraguay were clinical in Ciudad del Este, three up before the hour mark through Robert Morales, a Piero Hincapie own goal and Miguel Almiron.

Ecuador threatened a dramatic fightback as Jordy Caicedo scored a late penalty and Blas Riveros was sent off, but ultimately their fate was decided in Montevideo.

The third-placed side joined Uruguay in advancing with both teams on 25 points, four ahead of fifth-placed Peru, who went down 1-0 to Giorgian De Arrascaeta's goal late in the first half.

Peru are still in control of their play-off fate, although both Colombia and Chile can catch them as Paraguay attempt to again play the role of spoilers in Tuesday's final match in Lima.

Daniil Medvedev will have to go through two-time Miami Open champion Andy Murray to quickly reclaim the world number one ranking.

Medvedev's first stint at the top of the ATP rankings ended swiftly when he lost in the third round at the Indian Wells Masters and was displaced by Novak Djokovic.

But the Russian has the opportunity to leapfrog Djokovic once more by making the semi-finals in Miami.

Before thinking about the latter stages of the Masters 1000 tournament, however, Medvedev first must master Murray, who looked in good nick on his return to Miami.

Murray has twice won this tournament but has not played it since 2016, meaning Thursday's match against Federico Delbonis was his Hard Rock Stadium debut.

Delbonis had won the pair's only prior meeting yet was outclassed 7-6 (7-4) 6-1 after a steady first set.

Medvedev and Murray have also only met once before now, with the world number two coming out on top, but the wild card is looking forward to the challenge.

"It's a big challenge for me, a big test," Murray said. "I've got a big training block after this tournament and it'll be a really good test for where my game's at and the things I need to work on as well against him. I'm looking forward to that."

That is not the only mouthwatering second-round tie, with Nick Kyrgios through to face Andrey Rublev.

However, Stefanos Tsitsipas has a slightly more straightforward task on paper after qualifier J.J. Wolf advanced past Daniel Altmaier.

A spectacular first-half performance from Brazil's forward trio of Neymar, Vinicius Junior and Antony paved the way for a stylish 3-0 win against Chile.

Neymar scored his 71st international goal in his 117th cap for Brazil, while for Vinicius there was just a second goal in his 13th international appearance as the Selecao claimed a deserved 2-0 half-time lead, controlling 63 per cent of the possession.

To Chile's credit – with their World Cup qualification hopes just about alive – their second half ensured a competitive encounter with chances of their own, but Brazil were comfortable, having already booked their place in Qatar.

A hopeful long ball forward ended up with a second penalty for the hosts, with Philippe Coutinho getting his name on the scoresheet soon after his arrival into the match after Neymar delegated the duties. There was time for Richarlison to add a fourth, too.

Brazil almost made a superb start after Antony sliced his way into the box from the right wing 30 seconds after kick-off, but his shot on goal was tame and easily gathered by Claudio Bravo.

Bravo stood firm amid an early onslaught, crucially taking the ball off Neymar's toes after a sloppy first touch 19 minutes in, but his first half took a turn for the worse.

After Mauricio Isla brought down Neymar in the box for a clear penalty in the 42nd minute, which the felled forward converted, Bravo botched a clearance less than two minutes later to allow Antony to slip in Vinicius for Brazil's second.

Chile's Arturo Vidal thought he had pegged one back four minutes into the second half, but the VAR ruled it out for offside, before Brazil made sure of the points with a penalty scored by substitute Coutinho when Antony beat Bravo to the ball and was wiped out.

Richarlison – also introduced off the bench – put the icing on the cake in stoppage time, cutting in on his left foot and curling a finish across Bravo to make it four.

Several of the biggest names on the PGA Tour continued strong starts at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play on Thursday, but Bryson DeChambeau was not among them.

Jon Rahm, Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka have all enjoyed 2-0-0 starts in Austin as they aim to top their four-man groups and reach the weekend.

Yet DeChambeau had only been able to tie with 49-year-old Richard Bland – bidding to become the oldest professional to qualify for the Masters – on Wednesday, with even that result requiring a little luck.

Up against Lee Westwood on Thursday, DeChambeau knew he must improve but did not. Westwood finished 1 up to leave DeChambeau bottom of Group 9 with just half a point.

DeChambeau at least has the excuse he is struggling with a wrist injury; world number four Patrick Cantlay will do well to explain away his below-par performances.

Cantlay lost his narrow lead over Keith Mitchell late on Wednesday and was well off the pace when play resumed in round two, beaten 5 and 4 by Seamus Power.

That result tied the biggest of Thursday, with Rahm and Justin Thomas also 5 and 4 winners against Cameron Young and Marc Leishman respectively.

Nothing quite compared to Maverick McNealy's sensational 8 and 6 defeat of Joaquin Niemann from the previous day – and McNealy could only tie with Kevin Na on Thursday, despite twice being 3 up.

Elsewhere, at the Corales Puntacana Resort and Club Championship, the tournament got under way with Ben Martin moving to the top of the leaderboard with a six-under 66, enough for a one-stroke lead.

Blagoja Milevski felt North Macedonia "won Italian style against the Italians" after his side sensationally ended the European champions' bid to qualify for the 2022 World Cup.

Aleksandar Trajkovski's long-range stoppage-time strike secured a stunning upset for the underdogs in a World Cup qualifying semi-final at Renzo Barbera on Thursday.

Italy dominated the game in Palermo, but failed to find the back of the net from 32 shots and were made to pay for their lack of a cutting edge.

Trajkovski's brilliant finish was North Macedonia's second shot on target as they set up a showdown with Portugal at Estadio do Dragao next Tuesday for a place in the finals in Qatar.

North Macedonia head coach Milevski felt his team played Italy at their own game.

"We won Italian style against the Italians, a goal from just two shots," he said. 

"I'm very happy for this victory, I'm proud for these guys. All energy from tomorrow will be on Portugal.

"I am very happy for Trajkovski with his goal. The game was prepared in this way, we know that Italy are a great team with several champions but we played as we should.

"We know our strengths. Before the game I told the guys to have fun and they did just that."

North Macedonia have never played in a World Cup and will have to pull off another major surprise in Porto to beat a Portugal side that beat Turkey 3-1 on Thursday.

Cristiano Ronaldo's dip in goalscoring form is of no concern to Fernando Santos, who felt he was "tremendous" in Portugal's World Cup qualifying play-off semi-final success against Turkey. 

First-half efforts from Otavio and Diogo Jota put Portugal in control in Porto, but Burak Yilmaz pulled one back after the hour mark and had a chance to equalise from the penalty spot with five minutes remaining. 

However, Yilmaz missed the target from 12 yards and Matheus Nunes completed a 3-1 win for the hosts in stoppage time, with Ronaldo hitting the bar in the final act of the game. 

The Manchester United forward had five efforts on goal and hit the target with two of them. Diogo Jota (38), who played 20 minutes fewer than Ronaldo, was Portugal's only outfield starter with fewer touches than him (40).  

Ronaldo also failed to find the back of the net in Portugal's draw with the Republic of Ireland and the defeat to Serbia that cost Santos' men automatic qualification for Qatar. 

He has scored just four goals in his past 13 appearances in all competitions for club and country, but the Portugal boss is unconcerned by his displays. 

"Ronaldo is judged on the goals he scores, it's always that way," said Santos. 

"From my perspective, he played a tremendous game, bringing the group together, working and pressing with the intensity of the game. 

"He didn't score, but that doesn't invalidate what was an excellent performance for Ronaldo. He had several opportunities. He didn't convert them, but he opened up a lot of spaces for others and that's something to highlight."

Ronaldo is one of several veterans in the side that it has been suggested should be phased out by Santos to make way for a new generation, but the coach spoke out in defence of the more experienced options at his disposal. 

"The one that everyone is asking to be replaced is the only golden generation. I'm very sorry to say this, but it is the only one that has brought a trophy to Portugal," he said. 

"Now, if you ask me if Portuguese football has a bright future ahead of it, with high-quality players capable of responding at any time, I'd say yes. 

"Portugal have always had great players, but the golden generation is the one that won the gold." 

Jorginho admits his missed penalties earlier in the campaign will haunt him forever following Italy's failure to qualify for the 2022 World Cup.

The Azzurri were crowned Euro 2020 champions just eight months ago after beating England in the final on penalties.

However, Roberto Mancini's side will not be at the World Cup later this year after they were stunned 1-0 by North Macedonia in the playoff semi-finals.

Although the hosts dominated proceedings in Palermo, Aleksandar Trajkovski struck in stoppage time to give the visitors a shock victory.

Having drawn four of their last five games, Italy had to settle for a playoff place after finishing two points behind Switzerland in Group C.

Among them was a 1-1 stalemate with the Swiss, during which Jorginho missed two penalties that would have seen the Azzurri displace their opponents in top spot.

And the Chelsea midfielder revealed his sense of responsibility for his nation’s subsequent failure to qualify.

"It is difficult to explain what happened," he told RAI Sport. "It hurts so much. I'll be honest, I am still incredulous. 

"I don't think we lacked creativity, as we always dominated matches and created so many chances. Unfortunately, we were unable to finish them off.

"We played good football, we won the European Championship last summer, but unfortunately in the last few games, we made small errors and were unable to recover from them. They made the difference.

"It hurts when I think about [the missed penalties], because I do still think about it, and it will haunt me for the rest of my life.

"Stepping up there twice and not being able to help your team and your country is something that I will carry with me forever, and it weighs on me.

"People say we need to lift our heads and carry on, but it's tough."

Meanwhile, team-mate Marco Verratti acknowledged that the reigning European champions were made to pay after failing to turn their superiority into goals.

"It is difficult to understand. I think we dominated this match, and we should've won. We had to win," the Paris Saint-Germain midfielder added.

"This is football, it is fundamental to be clinical and ruthless. It's just so difficult to explain. It was a nightmare.

"Looking around the locker room, we had the players to challenge for the tournament itself, yet here we are talking about a disaster. It's so tough to go from hero to zero.

"We experienced special times together, and I will always be proud of my team-mates. 

"We have to ask ourselves questions now. There's some bad luck, but you also need to make your own luck."

Roberto Mancini has been backed to stay on as head coach by FIGC president Gabriele Gravina despite Italy’s failure to qualify for the 2022 World Cup. 

The Azzurri succumbed to a sensational 1-0 defeat to North Macedonia in a play-off semi-final in Palermo on Thursday, ending their hopes of securing a place in the tournament in Qatar this year. 

Having missed out on a spot at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, Italy will not feature in two successive editions of the competition for the first time in their history. 

However, with Mancini having led the team on a 37-game unbeaten run that included Euro 2020 glory and only ended last October, Gravina still believes he is the right man for the job. 

"I hope Mancini will continue with us. He has a commitment to the project," Gravina told Rai Sport. 

"I hope, like all the other Italians, that he will dispose of the waste from this elimination and remain at the helm to continue our work. I still have a lot of energy. 

"I'm sorry, I'm truly embittered for all our fans. The great joy of the previous summer remains, but also the great bitterness of this defeat. We didn't expect it. 

"The guys were splendid and will continue to be so. They gave our country an extraordinary dream just a few months ago. However, tonight's defeat makes us understand there is something we need to do."

Gravina wanted the previous round of Serie A fixtures be postponed to give Italy more time to prepare for the game but his request was denied by the league. 

"I'm sorry the boys only met for one day to prepare for the game. It doesn't help, but I don't want to cause a controversy," he added. 

Italy have failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup following a shock 1-0 defeat by North Macedonia on Thursday.

For the first time in their history, the Azzurri will miss out on successive finals after Aleksandar Trajkovski struck a stoppage-time winner at Renzo Barbera.

Roberto Mancini's side triumphed at Euro 2020 just eight months ago, defeating England on penalties in the final to claim their second title.

But four years after their playoff defeat by Sweden denied them a place in Russia, they will be absent in Qatar after suffering their first ever loss on home soil in a World Cup qualifier.

It is fair to say it has been quite the journey from one World Cup qualifying failure to another.

Swede success

Despite finishing behind Spain in their qualifying group, Italy were heavy favourites to overcome Sweden in a two-legged playoff.

However, Jakob Johansson struck the only goal of the opening leg to set up a tense climax in Milan.

The Azzurri dominated their opponents, but the Swedes stood firm to deny them a place at the World Cup finals for the first time since 1958.

Euro 2020 glory

Failure to qualify for Russia culminated in the departure of Gian Piero Ventura, who was replaced in the hot-seat by Mancini.

Despite winning just one of his first six matches in charge, things eventually clicked into gear for the former Inter and Manchester City coach, who oversaw a perfect qualifying campaign for the delayed Euro 2020.

The Azzurri came flying out of the blocks; topping Group A with maximum points before seeing off Austria, Belgium and Spain, before holding their nerve to overcome England on penalties for a second European crown.

The record-breaking run

In fact, Italy did not look back after a 1-0 defeat by Portugal in the Nations League in September 2018.

The Azzurri subsequently embarked on a record-breaking 37-match unbeaten run across all competitions spanning three years.

The streak came to an end following a 2-1 defeat by Spain in the Nations League semi-finals last October.

North Macedonia mayhem

Despite going unbeaten in qualifying, four draws from their last five matches meant Italy had to settle for second place in Group C and another playoff berth.

Once again, the Azzurri were red-hot favourites to overcome North Macedonia, who are seeking their first appearance at the finals as an independent nation.

But despite 32 attempts on goal, the hosts were unable to make their superiority count in Palermo, and were punished right at the death as the visitors stunned the four-time world champions.

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