England are nearly there but a World Cup place for the other home nations hangs in the balance before the final group qualifying matches. Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland all have the chance to finish second in their group, which may well seal a place in the play-offs for Russia 2018. But coming second and staying in contention are not necessarily the same thing. Meanwhile, the Netherlands and Iceland face a battle to go through, while Argentina are in trouble and Syria are in a play-off to keep their unlikely World Cup dream alive. Here, we analyse the scenarios to establish who needs what from the final two rounds of qualifiers.
Wales have missed out on a place in the top tier of Uefa's new Nations League tournament after losing their final World Cup qualifier. The Nations League sees the 55 European national teams divided into four pots dependant on their rankings, with the top 12 going into League A. The Republic of Ireland, who beat Wales to get into the World Cup play-off, are also in League B with Northern Ireland. England are in League A with Scotland in League C. Netherlands' 2-0 win over Sweden in their final game in World Cup qualifying Group D means they move above Wales, into 12th place in Uefa's co-efficient rankings, taking the final place in League A.
There will be no British referee at the World Cup this summer for the first time since 1938. Fifa has chosen 36 officials for the tournament in Russia but none from England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. Mark Clattenburg was the only Briton on Fifa's long list of officials, collated in summer 2016, from which it would choose the final selection for Russia. But he left his job with the Premier League and forfeited his place. Clattenburg, who took charge of the Euro 2016 final when Portugal overcame hosts France, quit his job as a top-flight official in February 2017 to become Saudi Arabia's new head of referees.
As students return to school, they'll have to keep as close an eye on their inbox as they do on their GPA, as law enforcement has warned of a new wave of phishing scams targeting students in an attempt to steal their personal information. The attack highlighted by Action Fraud--the United Kingdom's fraud and cybercrime reporting center--as well as by the City of London Police, who are advising new and returning students at universities to be aware of the email-based scams. The phishing emails directed at university goers purport to be from the Student Loans Company, a government-owned non-profit that provides student loans to those attending school in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. The messages are relatively straightforward and not personalized, but deliver a message that may be enough to cause alarm for students and trick them into engaging with the email, especially during the busy first days of a new semester. Newsweek is hosting a Structure Security Event in San Francisco, Sept. 26-27.
Voters across the UK are going to the polls for the general election. More than 40,000 polling stations will be open from 07:00 until 22:00 BST, with about 46.9 million people registered to vote. Results from the first of the 650 constituencies to declare are expected before midnight, while the final tally should be known by Friday afternoon. To form a majority in the House of Commons, one party must win 326 seats. The weather forecast for Thursday is mixed, with some rain expected in south-west England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, and other areas remaining largely cloudy and dry.