Slovakia, Hungary and Romania have been hit with UEFA sanctions, including stadium closures, after being charged with racist behaviour by the governing body.

The trio of nations landed in hot water after the recent rounds of Euro 2020 qualifying matches, with incidents of racism among the charges levelled at all three.

Slovakia and Hungary, who met on September 9 in Budapest, must each play their next UEFA competition match behind closed doors, as ordered by the UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body.

Both were accused of racist behaviour among their fans, with Hungary supporters also found to have thrown objects and set off fireworks, while an additional charge was brought relating to the conduct of the team.

Slovakia fans were also deemed to have engaged in racist chanting, with the same offence committed by Romania's followers as their team took on Spain and Malta earlier this month.

Additionally, Romania supporters invaded the field of play, set off fireworks and threw objects, according to UEFA.

The Romanian Football Federation was ordered to ensure the next UEFA competition match was played behind closed doors, with a second game subject to a one-year probationary suspension.

Financial penalties were also dished out, with fines of €83,000 for the Romanian Football Federation, €67,125 for the Hungarian Football Federation, and €20,000 for the Slovakian Football Association.

Slovakia's next home game is against Wales on October 10, while Hungary host Azerbaijan three days later, and Romania welcome Norway two days on from that. 

Canada defeated United States 3-0 to claim top spot in Group A of the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship, while Russia's 7-4 win over Sweden meant they finished first in Group B.

Six matches on Tuesday concluded the group stage of the tournament in Slovakia.

The eight qualifiers for the quarter-finals – the top four teams in each group – were known, but final placings were up for grabs.

Canada's reward is a last-eight clash against Switzerland – who finished fourth in Group B – on Thursday, while Russia, who have a 100 per cent record after seven games, will take on USA in a mouth-watering tie.

Finland will play Sweden and Czech Republic face Germany in the other two quarter-final contests.

Canada made a fast start against USA with goals from Pierre-Luc Dubois and Kyle Turris in the first period setting them on their way.

Jared McCann of the Pittsburgh Penguins netted in the second to seal the win, while the impressive Matt Murray made 28 saves at the other end en route to a shutout.

They overhauled previous leaders Finland, who lost 4-2 to Germany, while hosts Slovakia ended their tournament on a high after beating Denmark in a shootout.

In Group B, Czech Republic won a lively encounter 5-4 against Switzerland and Latvia beat Norway 4-1 in a match between two teams who already knew they would be eliminated.

The United States inched closer to a IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship quarter-final spot as Chicago Blackhawks star Patrick Kane shone again in a 7-1 victory over Denmark.

Kane scored three points in the Group A success, as did Chicago team-mate Alex DeBrincat, with USA now virtually assured of a last-eight berth.

That would have been confirmed had hosts Slovakia not beaten Great Britain, but the hosts remain in the hunt after a convincing 7-1 triumph in which they scored three times in each of the first two periods.

With three of the top-four spots in Group A already sewn up, USA would join Finland, Canada and Germany in the quarter-finals if they beat the Germans on Sunday.

In Group B, Sweden's last-eight hopes were boosted by a thrilling 4-3 win over Switzerland in a repeat of last year's final.

Defending champions Sweden again came out on top thanks to Oliver Ekman-Larsson's game-winner in the third period.

Canada inflicted a first defeat on Germany, who went down 8-1 in Group A, while in Group B, Russia beat Latvia 3-1 and Norway overcame Italy 7-1.

Finland coasted to a 5-0 win over Great Britain at the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship to return to the top of Group A on Friday.

Jussi Olkinuora made 12 saves in his first career start for his country as Finland overcame a goalless first period against an improved British defence to prevail.

Toni Rajala needed just 25 seconds to break the deadlock in the second, while Atte Ohtamaa and Joel Kiviranta also scored as Finland stamped their authority on proceedings.

Britain gave up an empty-netter to Kristian Kuusela and Mikko Lehtonen scored with the clock winding down to put Finland back above Germany, who have a game in hand.

Also in Group A, Slovakia ended a three-game losing streak with a 6-3 victory over France.

Richard Panik scored the opening goal and provided two assists for Slovakia, who boosted their flagging quarter-final hopes with the win.

In Group B, Christian Bull celebrated a hat-trick as Norway won for the first time in this year's Championship thanks to a 5-3 result against Austria.

The Czech Republic, without a medal in the tournament since sealing bronze in 2012, hammered Italy 8-0 in the pool's other fixture – Michael Frolik managing a pair of goals and also assisting twice, while Dmitrij Jaskin also finished with two goals.

Alex Ovechkin helped Russia continue their impressive start to the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship, while the United States claimed a win on Wednesday.

Russia made it four wins from four in Group B with a 10-0 thrashing of Italy in Slovakia.

Washington Capitals star Ovechkin scored his first goal of the tournament, while Nikita Kucherov (one goal, three assists) and Evgeny Kuznetsov (two goals, two assists) each finished with four points.

Russia and Switzerland are the only unbeaten teams in the group after the latter overcame Norway 4-1.

In Group A, Patrick Kane scored and provided two assists in USA's 6-3 win over Great Britain.

The Chicago Blackhawks star became USA's all-time leading scorer at the tournament with 36 points.

It was USA's third win in four games and left them behind Germany, who maintained their perfect start by edging hosts Slovakia 3-2.

Dylan Larkin struck in overtime to give the United States a 3-2 win over Finland, while Russia maintained their perfect record in the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship on Monday.

Larkin took a long pass from Quinn Hughes and settled a tense encounter with 63:47 on the clock at Steel Arena in Kosice.

Defeat for Finland was the Group A leaders' first of the tournament and came after they had rallied from 2-0 down with goals from Harri Pesonen and Niko Ojamaki.

Russia made it three wins from three to sit pretty at the top of Group B, beating the Czech Republic 3-0 in in Bratislava.

Sergei Andronov, Nikita Gusev and Nikita Zaitsev were on target, while Andrei Vasilevski produced an outstanding display of goaltending.

Norway are rooted to the bottom of Group B after they were hammered 9-1 by ruthless Sweden.

Canada sit third in Group A following an almighty battle with Slovakia, Mark Stone snatching a 6-5 victory on the power play with only 1.8 seconds of regulation time remaining.

Switzerland dismantled newly promoted Italy 9-0 in the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship on Saturday, while fellow new boys Great Britain were also beaten.

Italy and Britain were promoted from Division I last year but both came up short in their opening matches in the top tier, with the former, up against the Swiss, last year's runners-up, completely outclassed.

The Minnesota Wild's Kevin Fiala scored twice for Switzerland, with captain Raphael Diaz encouraged by their continued high standards throughout the game.

"I think we knew after 4-0 we had to keep going," he said. "We had to keep pressing, keep playing our game, keep hitting, keep shooting, those small details."

Meanwhile, Britain went down 3-1 to Germany after holding their opponents scoreless until the 40th minute.

The Czech Republic had upset holders Sweden on the opening day and were comfortable against Norway, winning 7-2.

Hosts Slovakia, who enjoyed a similarly impressive first-game defeat of the United States, came up short against Finland in the final game of the day, losing 4-2.

Denmark needed a shoot-out to beat France in Group A, while Latvia eased past Austria 5-2.

Ryan Giggs hailed the blend of youth and experience that helped Wales earn a 1-0 win over Slovakia in the opening game of their European 2020 qualifier. 

Daniel James' goal after five minutes at Cardiff City Stadium proved to be decisive and the 21-year-old winger was the stand-out player throughout an afternoon on which Wales were worthy winners against Pavel Hapal's men.

While Gareth Bale was a closely marked man, James thrived on the space afforded to him and fellow youngsters David Brooks and Harry Wilson, who were also impressive. 

Giggs was satisfied after seeing his faith in his young players repaid, while the likes of Bale, Joe Allen and substitute Ashley Williams helped were on hand to add a little extra know-how.

"There were so many outstanding performances and we dug in at the end to get that clean sheet," Giggs told Sky Sports.

"In the first half we showed real composure. We rode our luck a little bit in the second half and I thought we could have scored a few more in the first but some of the play was fantastic, paired with great determination.

"We have got a great group of older players and younger players. We have got a lot of talent in the squad too so we will always create chances.

"It wasn't easy at the end but Ashley Williams came on to see us home and give us that experience."

Bale said Giggs' young charges have bought into the ethos that helped Wales reach Euro 2016, and underlined the importance of staying strong in defence.

"Everyone put in a shift," said the Real Madrid forward. "That's what we're used to now, the minimum requirement is you give 100 per cent.

"All the lads showed that – even the younger ones who weren't in the last campaigns.

"Even before the Euros and in the Euros, we built on a good solid defence and the whole team works hard together in units and we know we're always going to nick a goal. Today it was Dan and it was a great strike.

"It's what we needed. In the second half we came under a lot of pressure but we started the game well, got the early goal, and when we shut up shop we know how to do it."

Wales got their bid to qualify for Euro 2020 off to a winning start after Swansea City winger Daniel James scored the only goal in a 1-0 victory over Slovakia at Cardiff City Stadium. 

The 21-year-old struck after five minutes and Ryan Giggs' men rarely looked like losing against opponents they are expected to be vying with for a qualification spot from Group E. 

Croatia are tipped to top the group but after a performance in which the talents of James, David Brooks and Harry Wilson caught the eye more than those of Gareth Bale, Wales have every reason to look forward to a successful campaign. 

Wales coped admirably without the injured Aaron Ramsey as Giggs' well-drilled midfield kept the dangerous Marek Hamsik quiet to ensure they began with three points. 

The hosts took the lead when a burst of pace from Brooks put Slovakia on the back foot before James dispossessed Peter Pekarik on the edge of the box and rifled home with a powerful right-footed finish. 

Giggs' men did not let Slovakia settle, hassling and harrying them for possession and dominating the early exchanges, Brooks sending a first-time shot wide from 12 yards as they probed for a second. 

When the visitors did enjoy spells of possession, they came up against a packed Welsh defence. Brooks almost poached a goal on the counter-attack before the break, curling a shot narrowly wide from the corner of the penalty area. 

Slovakia went close through Albert Rusnak as Wales were tested early in the second half, the winger heading wide from six yards out, but James' pace was always a threat at the other end. 

The Swansea man pulled Slovakia's defence apart only for Brooks to drag his shot wide, but Slovakia goalkeeper Martin Dubravka was required to make a diving save to keep Wilson's angled drive out with 17 minutes left. 

There was a panicky moment for Wayne Hennessey when Rusnak's cross was headed goalwards from close range by substitute Michal Duris but the Crystal Palace keeper showed quick reactions, saving above his head to the relief of the home crowd. 
 

What does it mean?

Wales have now won three of their five competitive matches under Giggs and all of their last three opening matches in major qualifying campaigns.

Swans star shines in Cardiff

James possesses the wonderful combination of speed, close control and good finishing technique. On a day when Bale was a closely marked man, the Swansea forward provided a constant threat.

Hamsik short of his best

After moving to Chinese club Dalian Yifang in February, Hamsik looked off the pace. The playmaker lacked his usual poise and presence in Slovakia's midfield.

What's next?

Wales face Group E favourites Croatia in Zagreb on June 8 while Slovakia head to Azerbaijan three days later for a game they will feel is a must-win encounter.

Gareth Bale would be welcomed back to Tottenham should he choose to call time on his spell at Real Madrid, according to Spurs defender Ben Davies.

Speculation over Bale's future at Santiago Bernabeu has been rife during a season in which Madrid have struggled to cope following the loss of Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus.

Bale dazzled at Tottenham before moving to Spain, and his Wales team-mate Davies said he would relish the chance to play alongside his country's leading scorer on a more regular basis.

"He's come under a bit of flak at Madrid recently, but for Wales he's always been brilliant," Davies told reporters ahead of the Euro 2020 qualifier against Slovakia.

"I'm always going to say it's unfair, he is one of the best players in the world, we see it every day in training.

"I'd definitely have him at Tottenham. But I don't know how likely that is."

Wales beat Trinidad and Tobago 1-0 in a friendly ahead of their clash with Slovakia, though Bale is not the only player to have impressed Davies during the international break. 

Ryan Giggs named David Brooks, Harry Wilson, Ben Woodburn and Daniel James in his squad, with their quality leaving Davies optimistic about Wales' long-term future. 

"If you look at the options we've got now, we definitely have a lot more up there," said the defender. 

"In the past, we only had Gareth with that pace, but we're lucky to be blessed with it now. 

"It's a good position to be in as a squad, the younger players will want to show what they can do when they get the chance of a regular place – that's the competition you want." 

Gareth Bale says he is raring to go for Wales and has denied injury problems have played a part in a difficult season at Real Madrid.

The LaLiga giants have reappointed Zinedine Zidane - with whom Bale had a difficult relationship - after Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari both failed at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Bale was a surprise starter and found the net as Madrid beat struggling Celta Vigo 2-0 in Zidane's first game back in charge, with the similarly recalled Isco also on the scoresheet.

It was only Bale's 17th LaLiga start of the campaign, with the Wales forward having struggled to nail down a regular place in the Madrid team this season.

Yet ahead of Ryan Giggs' side starting their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign at home to Slovakia, Bale dismissed any lingering fitness concerns.

"I've only had one injury, I've been fine," Bale told reporters on Saturday. "I have been playing, I've scored a decent amount of goals.

"We want to be playing in the major tournaments and experience what we have been through.

"We need to produce again, we need to work hard as a team. I am ready, I am raring to go."

While Bale is available despite sitting out a warm-up against Trinidad and Tobago, Aaron Ramsey will miss the Slovakia game due to injury.

"Obviously it's a big blow for us," Bale said of the Arsenal midfielder, who is set to join Juventus. "He's a big player for us and we'll obviously miss him.

"But it gives someone else a chance to step in and do a good job, and hopefully help the team to a win."

Slovakia won their first Group E game 2-0 against Hungary while World Cup finalists Croatia also made a winning start, triumphing 2-1 at home to Azerbaijan.

"We are going for top spot, I don't know why we wouldn't," Bale added. "We are always the underdogs. The bookies aren't always right. We are going to go into this campaign looking to win the group.

"We know both countries got off to a winning start the other day but there is no reason why we can't. There's no reason why we can't go on and win the group."

Gareth Bale has been included in Wales' squad for the upcoming Euro 2020 qualifier against Slovakia, despite missing Real Madrid's win over Real Valladolid on Sunday through injury.

The forward appeared to suffer an ankle injury last week during Madrid's shock 4-1 home loss to Ajax in the Champions League which dumped the holders out of the competition at the last-16 stage.

Bale was then not involved as Madrid came from behind to beat Valladolid, which proved to be Santiago Solari's final match in charge before Zinedine Zidane's return to the club was confirmed on Monday.

Wales boss Ryan Giggs has included Bale as part of his 31-man squad for the friendly with Trinidad and Tobago next Wednesday and the nation's first Euro 2020 qualifier against Slovakia four days later.

Speaking at a news conference, Giggs told reporters: "I have [had a chat with Bale]. I was as worried as anyone else, but he should be fine.

"He is a fantastic player, when Gareth turns up he gives everyone a lift."

Rotherham United midfielder Will Vaulks has earned his first call-up but Aston Villa defender James Chester and on-loan Derby County midfielder Andy King miss out through injury.

 

Wales squad: Wayne Hennessey, Danny Ward, Adam Davies, Chris Maxwell; Chris Gunter, Ashley Williams, Ben Davies, Neil Taylor, Connor Roberts, Ethan Ampadu, Declan John, Tom Lockyer, Chris Mepham, Paul Dummett, James Lawrence, Ryan Hedges; Aaron Ramsey, Joe Allen, David Brooks, Ben Woodburn, Harry Wilson, Matthew Smith, Lee Evans, Daniel James, Will Vaulks, George Thomas, Rabbi Matondo; Gareth Bale, Sam Vokes, Tom Lawrence, Tyler Roberts.

The Danish Football Association (DBU) has reached an agreement for senior Denmark stars to return to the national team to face Wales. 

John Jensen described Denmark's 3-0 loss to Slovakia on Wednesday as the best defeat of his career, hailing his hastily assembled team as "heroes".

Denmark fielded a team made up entirely of futsal and lower-league players against Slovakia due to a commercial sponsorship row with senior stars, and they produced a valiant display despite losing 3-0 in Trnava.  

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