The corruption scandal sweeping world soccer engulfed Germany as FIFA said Friday that it would investigate "very serious allegations" that voters were bribed when Germany won the 2006 World Cup bid.

The latest claims broke as suspended president Sepp Blatter went public about his FIFA ethics case, admitting there was a "gentleman's agreement" for the 2011 payment made to UEFA President Michel Platini that led to them being suspended by FIFA.

FIFA will now look into a report in news magazine Der Spiegel that Germany's 2006 World Cup bid committee established a slush fund of about $6 million to bribe four of the 24 voters on the 2006 bid.

Franz Beckenbauer, the former German great who headed the bidding committee, and Wolfgang Niersbach, current president of the German football federation, were aware of the slush fund by 2005, the report claimed. Money from that fund was transferred to FIFA as a contribution for a gala that was later canceled.

The German football federation insisted the report was "completely baseless."

The money was reportedly used to secure the backing of four Asian representatives. Germany received 12 votes to South Africa's 11 to secure the World Cup.

Auto racing

Keselowski takes pole

Brad Keselowski won the pole for Sunday's Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway, turning a lap at 195.503 miles per hour to beat out 10 Chase for the Sprint Cup drivers in the final round of qualifying.

Carl Edwards was second-fastest at 195.454 mph, followed by Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin, Jeff Gordon and Martin Truex Jr.

All are still in the championship race.


No virus check for Rio water

Rio de Janeiro's Olympic organizing committee ruled out conducting viral tests of the sewage-laden waterways where the 2016 Games' aquatic events will be held, a Rio 2016 spokesman said.

The decision follows the recommendation of the World Health Organization, which has backed less-expensive bacterial testing. The spokesman, Mario Andrada, said those were the WHO's "final instructions for Rio 2016."

The question of whether to conduct viral testing has been a hot-button issue since July, when a study showed dangerous levels of viruses from human sewage at all Rio Olympic water venues.


Golf: Brendan Steele shot a 2-under-par 70 and retained his lead in the Open, the first event of the new PGA Tour season. At 11-under 133, he leads a group of four players by two strokes.

NBA: New Orleans signed veteran point guard Nate Robinson. It's the eighth NBA team for Robinson since entering the league in 2005. …Charlotte signed swingman Damien Wilkins, who was an NBA D-League All-Star for Iowa in 2014-15. Wilkins played for the Timberwolves in 2009-10.

Men's tennis: Rafael Nadal beat a top-five player for the first time in more than a year, taking a 6-2, 6-1 win over Stan Wawrinka in the quarterfinals of the Shanghai Masters. Top-seeded Novak Djokovic also advanced with his 15th consecutive victory.

Women's tennis: Venus Williams closed in on a spot in the season-ending WTA Finals by beating Alize Cornet 6-1, 6-1 to reach the Hong Kong Open semifinals.

Hockey: Edmonton Oilers coach Todd McLellan was named head coach of Team North America for the 2016 World Cup of Hockey in September 2016 in Toronto. Team North America will consist of the top players from Canada and the U.S. who are 23 or under.