Latin America

Chile beats Venezuela, Colombia wins

Colombia's James Rodriguez celebrates his winner against Ecuador on Friday night.
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ROAD LESS TAKEN

Check out all the best action shots from FIFA's World Cup qualifying.

Chile closed in on qualification for next year's World Cup by recording a 3-0 home win over Venezula on Friday.

Eduardo Vargas scored the opener in the 10th minute and Marcus Gonzalez doubled the hosts' advantage in the 30th before Juventus midfielder Arturo Vidal sealed the result in the 85th.

The win moved Chile to 24 points - two behind joint leaders Argentina and Colombia - and has two games to play. It is eight points clear of Uruguay - which has two games in hand - in fifth place which is the highest spot that does not yield an automatic place at Brazil 2014.

Venezuela is level with Uruguay on 16 points but only has two games left.

Colombia moved to the brink of qualification for next year's World Cup by winning 1-0 at home against Ecuador on Friday in South American qualifying.

James Rodriguez scored in the 30th minute.

Colombia improved to 26 points from 13 matches, equal with leader Argentina. If Peru fails to win against Uruguay later Friday, Colombia is guaranteed of at least fifth spot in the group and an intercontinental playoff, and realistically looks certain to qualify automatically from the top four.

CONMEBOL STANDINGS

Argentina leads group qualificaton in South America. Find out the rest of table makeup.

Ecuador has 21 points in 13 matches and is also in a strong position to qualify.

Paraguay hammered Bolivia 4-0 on Friday to keep alive faint hopes of World Cup qualification while effectively ending the campaign of its rival.

Jonathan Fabbro, Roque Santa Cruz, Richard Ortiz and Gustavo Gomez scored for Paraguay, which improved to 11 points, five short of Uruguay in the fifth and last spot to progress, with three games to play.

Bolivia is a point further back, but with only two games left and cannot qualify.

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