Costa Rica all but assured itself of a berth in the World Cup soccer finals with a 4-2 victory at El Salvador.
The game was called with eight minutes left because hundreds of Salvadoran fans in the capacity crowd of 50,000 threw objects onto the field to express disgust with their team's performance.
That could result in a fine and sanction against the Salvadoran Football Assn. The Salvadoreans' next scheduled home game, against the United States July 9, may be transferred to a third country.
The victory meant that Costa Rica needs only a tie with El Salvador in their return match to qualify for the World Cup. That game is scheduled for July 16 in Costa Rica. Costa Rica is 4-2-1 for nine points. The United States is second with a 2-1-1 record for five points.
Two teams from the group comprising Costa Rica, El Salvador, the United States, Guatemala and Trinidad and Tobago will qualify for Rome.