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Germany, Spain advance in World Cup

Photo by Mike Phillips

Photo by Mike Phillips

CAPE TOWN, South Africa -- Miroslav Klose scored twice to move into a tie for second on the all-time World Cup scoring list, and Thomas Mueller and Arne Friedrich added goals to give Germany a resounding 4-0 victory Saturday in the World Cup quarterfinals. As flashbulbs popped, the Germans hugged and high-fived each other before walking around the edge of the field, saluting their fans.

Injured captain Michael Ballack came down to the field, watching from the bench as his teammates celebrated.

Argentina coach Diego Maradona took a slow walk to midfield, hands jammed in his pockets, while several of his players broke down in tears. It was a surprisingly meek end for the Argentines, whose dominant run had given fans hope this might be a team capable of reaching the final for the first time since 1990, when Maradona led them on the field.

Instead, it is Germany that will play Spain in the semifinals Wednesday in Durban. This will be Germany's third straight trip to the semis and its 12th overall -- nobody has more.

The two goals give the 32-year-old Klose 14 at the World Cup, tying him with German great Gerd Mueller for second place on the all-time list. Brazil's Ronaldo holds the World Cup record with 15 goals.

Klose also is second to Mueller on Germany's all-time list with 52 goals. Mueller scored 68.

Spain 1, Paraguay 0

JOHANNESBURG (AP) -- Spain found just enough of the beautiful game -- and a touch of good luck -- to advance to the World Cup semifinals, beating Paraguay 1-0 on Saturday night.

David Villa took the tournament scoring lead with his fifth goal, which banked in off both posts in the 83rd minute. The goal finished off a brilliant, three-way passing combination that typifies the way the European champions like to play. It sent Spain into the World Cup's final four for the first time in 60 years.

Spain faces Germany on Wednesday in Durban -- a reprise of its 1-0 victory in the Euro 2008 final.

One night after penalty kicks decided Uruguay's shootout win over Ghana, they were critical in Spain's victory.

A somewhat subdued match suddenly became chaotic in a two-minute span of the second half. Gerard Pique pulled down Paraguay's Oscar Cardozo in the penalty area on a corner kick, earning a yellow card and giving Cardozo a penalty kick.

With the vuvuzelas reaching a crescendo, the striker who ended his team's shootout win over Japan was denied brilliantly this time by Iker Casillas, who dived left to block Cardozo's low kick.

Seconds later, Villa broke free behind the defense and was hauled down by Antolin Alcoraz, who drew a yellow card. Xabi Alonso went to the penalty spot and sent a wicked drive into the net.

Again, the stadium rocked, but referee Carlos Batres of Guatemala waved off the goal, saying a Spain player entered the area too soon.

Given a second chance, keeper Justo Villar guessed correctly, diving left to stop the penalty kick. He also knocked the rebound away from Cesc Fabregas before defender Paulo Da Silva made a leg save at the goal line on another shot by Sergio Ramos.

After that wild sequence, it seemed anything was possible.