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TV Program Guide

Showcase South Africa: The 2010 FIFA World Cup™

Argentina

13

Nigeria

14

Korea Republic

15

Greece

15

England

16

USA

17

Algeria

18

Slovenia

18

Germany

19

Match Schedule

20

Serbia

22

Australia

23

Ghana

23

Netherlands

24

Denmark

25

Japan

26

Cameroon

26

Italy

27

Paraguay

28

New Zealand

29

Slovakia

29

Brazil

30

Portugal

31

Cote d’Ivoire

32

Korea DPR

32

Spain

33

Switzerland

34

Chile

35

Honduras

35

Players to Watch

36

Chief Operating Officer, The Nation Pana Janviroj Vice President, Advertising Ratchanee Kaewyai Tel. 0-2338-3563 E-mail: ratchanee@nationgroup.com Editorial Team Lawrence Neal Ian Matthew Yodsroi Sukdinunt Creative Tanat Supichayangkun Publisher Nation Multimedia Group Plc. 1854 Bangna-Trat Road, Bangna, Bangkok 10260 Printing Kyodo Nation Printing Services Co., Ltd. 167/5 Moo 4, Bangna-Trat Road Km 29, Bang Bo, Samut Prakarn Tel. 0-2313-4412-4 Information source: www.fifa.com

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Channel

12

VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS

Mexico France Nigeria Greece USA Slovenia Australia Ghana Denmark Cameroon Paraguay Slovakia Portugal Korea DPR Chile Switzerland Uruguay Mexico Nigeria Korea Rep Serbia USA Algeria Australia Japan Denmark Paraguay New Zealand Cote d’ Ivoire Korea DPR Switzerland Honduras Uruguay South Africa Korea Rep Argentina England Algeria Germany Serbia Italy New Zealand Japan Netherlands Brazil Cote d’ Ivoire Spain Honduras

20.30 01.00 20.30 18.00 01.00 18.00 01.00 20.30 18.00 20.30 01.00 18.00 20.30 01.00 18.00 20.30 01.00 01.00 20.30 18.00 18.00 20.30 01.00 20.30 18.00 01.00 18.00 20.00 01.00 18.00 20.30 01.00 20.30 20.30 01.00 01.00 20.30 20.30 01.00 01.00 20.30 20.30 01.00 01.00 20.30 20.30 01.00 01.00

3 7 11 3 3 7 9 11 3 7 3 11 7 3 9 11 7 11 9 7 3 7 9 3 11 7 11 9 3 7 9 3 3 11 7 3 3 7 7 9 3 11 11 7 11 9 7 3

Channel

Uruguay

Time

12

1A 1C 1D 1B 1E 1G 1F 1H

VS VS VS VS VS VS VS VS

2B 2D 2C 2A 2F 2H 2E 2G

20.30 01.00 20.30 01.00 20.30 01.00 20.30 01.00

11 9 7 3 11 9 7 3

Teams

Mexico

Group

11

Date

France

Group Matches 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48

11 12 12 12 13 13 14 13 14 14 15 15 15 16 16 16 17 18 17 17 18 18 19 19 19 20 20 20 21 21 21 22 22 22 23 23 23 23 24 24 24 24 25 25 25 25 26 26

June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June June

A A B B C C D D E E F F G G H H A A B B D C C D E E F F G G H H A A B B C C D D F F E E G G H H

South Africa Uruguay Argentina Korea Rep England Algeria Germany Serbia Netherlands Japan Italy New Zealand Cote d’ Ivoire Brazil Honduras Spain South Africa France Greece Argentina Germany Slovenia England Ghana Netherlands Cameroon Slovakia Italy Brazil Portugal Chile Spain Mexico France Nigeria Greece Slovenia USA Ghana Australia Slovakia Paraguay Denmark Cameroon Portugal Korea DPR Chile Switzerland

Date

10

Match

8

South Africa

Time

SPECIAL PUBLICATIONS

Group H

Group G

Group F

Group E

Group D

Group C

Group B

Group A

Match Venues

Match

6

Teams

Contents

Contents

Round of 16 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56

26 27 27 28 28 29 29 30

June June June June June June June June

57 58 59 60

2 2 3 4

July July July July

W53 W49 W51 W55

VS VS VS VS

W54 W50 W52 W56

20.30 01.00 20.30 01.00

3 7 11 9

61 62

7 July 8 July

W57 W59

VS VS

W58 W60

01.00 01.00

9 3

63

11 July

L61

VS

L62

01.00

11

64

12 July

W61

VS

W62

01.00

7

Quarter-finals

Semi-finals 3rd Place Final


Official Emblem of the 2010 FIFA World Cup™

Showcase South Africa:

Celebratory and energetic in its nature, South Africa’s official emblem for the 2010 FIFA World Cup competition features a figure, reminiscent

The 2010 FIFA World Cup™

of its earliest rock art paintings, performing a

In 2004, South Africa ‘chalked up’ another ‘first’ as the first

had to be installed to accommodate the media broadcasters

The ball soars upwards, inviting the world’s

African country to be awarded the honour of hosting the

from around the world. Infrastructure was updated to cope

nations to join the 2010 World Cup in Africa.

2010 FIFA World Cup football tournament. Aware of the

with the huge demand for travel facilities between the

Behind, the colours of the South African flag

‘eyes of the world’ upon them, South Africa, with strong

various venues and special security arrangements had to

stretch south to north, embodying the energy,

commercial backing and firm support from international

be organized and tested ready for the opening.

diversity and fiery passion of the nation. The

bicycle kick that captures the flair of South African football.

original typeface captures the playful, free

corporations, quietly and confidently made all necessary preparations: among the enormous amount of detail, the

South Africa has accomplished its task and its citizens

spirited, bold, welcoming and friendly nature of

modernizing, refurbishing, or building of brand new

stand proud, united and confident, ready to welcome all

South Africa’s unique character.

stadiums, all to recognized international standards, took

the qualified teams and players, plus officials and the many

priority.

fans and supporters from all over the world to the Rainbow

Practice grounds and hotel accommodation for all teams,

Zakumi – Official Mascot of the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ Zakumi (‘ZA’ for South Africa and ‘kumi’ =10) is the official mascot for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa. He is a very friendly and jolly little leopard, who symbolizes South Africa and is self-confident, adventurous and spontaneous, representing all football stadiums, organizers, officials, staff, teams and players, as well as fans and supporters, whatever their age and wherever they come from. Zakumi looks forward to being a good host to all visitors during the competition, firmly believing that football is one of the top mediums for breaking down language and nationality barriers between people. He loves football and always carries a ball around with him, often inviting people to join him in a spontaneous game.

Nation World Cup spectacular, which they fully expect to

However, Zakumi’s main priority during the competition

be a resounding success.

is to meet and entertain as many people, fans and

officials and thousands of fans and supporters were

supporters as possible throughout the tournament,

arranged. Special broadcasting facilities and technology

especially schoolchildren and young teenagers, to ensure they all enjoy their visit to South Africa and experience the warmth and spirit of the people of the African continent. Zakumi therefore looks forward to bidding you all a warm and friendly welcome to South Africa and hopes you all enjoy the tournament and the unique Spirit of Africa during your stay!

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Stadiums

Tshwane/Pretoria - Loftus Versfeld Stadium

Rustenburg - Royal Bafokeng Stadium Originally constructed in 1999, the Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace is named after the Bafokeng people who live in the area. With a seating capacity of 42,000, the stadium is situated 12 km from Rustenburg city centre. It has been host to many Premier Soccer League games and in 2001, hosted a FIFA World Cup qualifier between South Africa and Burkino Faso, which South Africa won 2-1.

Situated in the heart of Tshwane/Pretoria, Loftus Versfeld Stadium is one of the oldest in South Africa and has been used for major sporting events since 1903. The first concrete structure, built by Pretoria City Council in 1923, enabled the stadium to accommodate 2,000 spectators. The stadium now boasts a 50,000 seating capacity and has hosted many significant matches, including those of the 1995 Rugby World Cup and the 1996 CAF African Cup of Nations.

Polokwane - Peter Mokaba Stadium The newly completed Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane, is the most northerly venue for the preliminary rounds of the competition, sitting right in the heart of the city as its new pride and joy. The new state-of-the-art 45,000 capacity stadium was officially opened in January, 2010, by Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale, who said the people were justly proud of their beautiful new stadium, built for the benefit of the people. Its selection as a World Cup competition venue is a great honour and distinction for the city and its new stadium.

Polokwane Rustenberg

Originally built in 1952, Free State Stadium underwent a medium upgrade in 2008, followed by a plush new look for the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup, which included an increased capacity to 45,000. It was during this tournament that it hosted the memorable semi-final, when the USA beat Spain in one of the biggest upsets of the tournament. Since it was first built, it has hosted numerous major football and rugby union matches, but due to the explosion of football popularity throughout the African continent, soccer is the main game played in the stadium today.

Nelspruit

Mangaung/ Bloemfontein Durban

Welcome Cape Town

One of a group of new stadia constructed for the 2010 World Cup, its name means “many people together in a small space”. Located 7km from Nelspruit in Mpumalanga Province, it has a 46,000 capacity and is a welcome addition for Nelspruit’s sports loving people, as before its construction, the city had never had a top football venue to host international matches.

Johannesburg - Soccer City Stadium

Tshwane/ Pretoria Johannesburg

Mangaung/Bloemfontein Free State Stadium

Nelspruit - Mbombela Stadium

Nelson Mandela Bay/ Port Elizabeth

Described as one of the most artistic and awe-inspiring football venues on the African continent, the newly-reconstructed Soccer City Stadium will host the first and final matches of the 2010 World Cup. With an increased capacity to 94,700, the stadium’s design is based on the iconic African pot known as a ‘calabash’ and its aesthetic design is further enhanced, when it is fully illuminated at night. Soccer City is the first international football stadium in South Africa and has hosted many international football and sporting events. It has also acted as a rallying point on various occasions in South Africa’s history, notably the first mass rally for Nelson Mandela following his release from imprisonment.

Johannesburg - Ellis Park Stadium Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium

Cape Town - Green Point Stadium Green Point Stadium is one of the most artistic football venues in South Africa, situated a stone’s throw from the ocean in one of Cape Town’s most sought-after areas. The 70,000 capacity, multipurpose venue that will be used to stage major events and concerts, will also host eight matches during the FIFA 2010 World Cup tournament, including one of the two semi-finals.

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The Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium is situated on the shores of the North End Lake and is one of the new purpose-built stadiums completed in 2009. The multi-purpose 46,000 capacity stadium has a playing field of natural grass with a surrounding area of artificial turf. During the tournament, it will host the match for third place and a quarter-final, amid a total eight matches during the tournament. One of a series of major tests for the newlyconstructed stadium was the coveted Soweta Derby match between the Orlando Pirates and the Kaizer Chiefs – a game that normally attracts capacity crowds - and which the stadium coped with admirably.

Durban - Durban Moses Mabhida Stadium The distinctive futuristic design of the newly-built Durban Moses Mabhida Stadium epitomizes the current wave of architectural innovation sweeping through South Africa. Taking design inspiration from the South African Flag, the 70,000 capacity stadium is appropriately situated in the heart of the King’s Park Sporting Precinct and features a soaring arch that begins on two legs, extends high over the centre of the stadium to meld together and descend as one leg on the opposite side, representing the unity of a once-divided nation. A cable car ascends to a viewing platform at the top of the 350m arch, 106m above the pitch, providing spectacular panoramic views of the nearby shoreline and Durban.

Originally built in the centre of Johannesburg in 1928 as a rugby union stadium, Ellis Park Stadium was demolished and rebuilt in 1982. Seating 62,000, it has hosted many epic sporting events, including the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup final between Brazil and the United States. Its defining moment, however, has to be the hosting of South Africa’s shock defeat of New Zealand in the 1995 Rugby World Cup Trophy final. Iconic scenes of President Nelson Mandela holding the trophy aloft in Ellis Park were beamed around the world, uniting all South Africans in a glorious celebration.

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South Africa

We’ve had difficulties for two years now, but everyone kept believing and they were justified in doing so. We grabbed hold of the right to

France

take part in something exceptional – a World Cup in South Africa.

South Africa have failed to get past the group stages at either of the country’s two previous World Cup appearances in 1998

Raymond Domenech France coach

and 2002 in France and Korea/Japan, respectively. As host nation to the 2010 FIFA World Cup, South Africa gained automatic qualification to the first World Cup competition to be

players up front and in midfield, and a world-class goalkeeper.

midfielder Steven Pienaar, whose confidence and inspirational to the squad are backs Siboniso Gaxa and

home

Uruguay away

Mexico

Korea Republic

time against Ireland in a play-off match.

France

Greece

group stage to the second round. Anything else would be a

Group C

England USA

controversial qualification games of the competition, with Thierry Henry’s handling of the ball. The French seemed jaded and their manager appeared to have run out of ideas. Consequently, France may well have to endure another tense World Cup

Germany

campaign, especially with tough competitors Mexico and Uruguay in their group.

Australia The versatile Thierry Henry is captain of the French squad in South Africa, with William Gallus, Jeremy Toulalan and Lassana

Diarra providing big-name support, plus Yoann Gourcuff, Franck Ribery and Nicolas Anelka rounding out the side. Serbia

We are all aware that it is a huge honour

Algeria

na

ar

to play in a World Cup on home soil; not many

Pie

players have had such a privilege. We are

en

any silverware Ghanawith Les Bleus and the highlight of his time as

ev

Slovenia

us, the World Cup is our priority, it’s our

German World Cup Final and UEFA EURO 2008. His appointment as Coach has led to great expectations for success

Aaron Mokoena South Africa captain

Netherlands Denmark

in South Africa and the French fans will be hoping for nothing

Group F

Group E

country with pride.

less than a win.

Italy

Paraguay

home

away

USA The Stats

Fixtures: V Uruguay (June 11, Cape Town), V Mexico (June 17, Polokwane), V South Africa (June 22, Mangaung/Bloemfontein) Road to South Africa: UEFA Play-off Winners Results: Austria 3-1 France • France 2-1 Serbia • Romania 2-2 France • Lithuania 0-1 France • France 1-0 Lithuania • Faroe Islands 0-1 France • France 1-1 Romania • Serbia 1-1 France • France 5-0 Faroe Islands • France 3-1 Austria Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 6 3 1 18 9 +9 21 Coach: Raymond Domenech FIFA World Ranking: 10th World Cup Appearances: 12 (1930, 1934, 1938, 1954, 1958, 1966, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Winners, 1998

Slovenia

their coach, so far, has been their appearance at the 2006

biggest goal. We need to represent our

England

Algeria

Appointed coach in 2004, Raymond Domenech has yet to lift

also aware of the task that lies ahead. For

St

France

The play-off has gone down in history of one of the most

Group D

everything into their effort to get through the

Uruguay

qualification with a last gasp goal in extra

Fixtures: V Mexico (June 11, Johannesburg - JSC), V Uruguay (June 16, Tshwane/Pretoria), V France (June 22, Mangaung/Bloemfontein) Road to South Africa: Host Country Coach: Carlos Alberto Parreira FIFA World Ranking: 90th World Cup Appearances: 2 (1998, 2002) Best Results: Round 1, 1998, 2002

As hosts, South Africa will be putting

fans.

hoping to avenge their defeat with a second victory on football’s

The team just managed to squeak through

The Stats

Tsepho Masilela.

fiercely supportive

Cup Nigeria 2006 in Germany. This time around Les Bleus will be greatest stage.

moves can easily fire up the team. Also important

disappointment for the

win in 1998 and a controversial finals appearance at World

South Africa

Group D

side. The star player in the South African team is Everton

Mexico

Group C

coach, who has brought sweeping improvements to the Bafana

Argentina

France has 12 previous World Cup appearances with a single

Group E

coach Carlos Alberto Parreira, himself a World Cup winning

South Africa

‘… another tense World Cup campaign’

Netherlands Denmark

Group F

the ball into the opposing side’s net.

Group B

The main problem the side faces is a seeming inability to get

Group B

The Bafana squad is not short of gifted talent, with confident

Franck Ribery

Africa will be a tough team to beat.

Group A

and Spain in last year’s FIFA Confederations Cup show, South

Team

France

held on African soil. But, as previous matches against Brazil

The South African squad is being led this time by Brazilian

10

The objective was to qualify. We knew it

wouldn’t be easy, but I never had any doubts.

Hosts will be giving their all

Group A

South Africa Team

Group

A

Group

A

11


B

Group

Group

A

Mexico

home

away

Algeria

Argentina

Greece The current Mexican team is notably lacking in big-name attackers but is strong through the midfield with the veteran player Cuauhtemoc Blanco holding the team together with up-and-coming stars Guillermo Ochoa and GuillermoGermany Franco, and the team captain Rafael Marquez offering solid defence.

Australia El Tri is very much the heavyweight team of the North and Central American league with more World Cup appearances than any other country from the region. At very least they will be hoping to knock-out their rivals and finallySerbia break the long-standing impasse of the quarter finals round.

Serious designs on winning the title

Despite a tortuous qualification campaign, Argentina are headed for South Africa with serious designs on winning the title for the first time in 24 years. The 1978 and 1986 World Champions have pinned their faith in Coach Diego Maradona,

Ghana

Slovenia

Argentina

Team

Nigeria Mexico’s path to World Cup qualification was far from smooth, with coaches coming and going without success until finally, under Atletico Madrid coach Javier Aguirre, the team managed to pull back with five Korea Republic wins and a single draw to finish in second place in the North American CONCACAF Group, behind neighbours and eternal rivals USA.

Lionel Messi

Uruguay

Fixtures: V South Africa (June 11, Johannesburg - JSC), V France (June 17, Polokwane), V Uruguay (June 22, Rustenburg) Road to South Africa: 2nd in CONCACAF Group France Results: USA 2-0 Mexico • Mexico 2-0 Costa Rica • Honduras 3-1 Mexico • El Salvador 2-1 Mexico • Mexico 2-1 Trinidad and Tobago • Mexico 2-1 USA • Costa Rica 0-3 Mexico • Mexico 1-0 Honduras • Mexico 4-1 El Salvador • Trinidad and Tobago 2-2 Mexico Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts England 10 6 1 3 18 12 +6 19 Coach: Javier Aguirre FIFA World Ranking: 17th World Cup Appearances: 13 (1930, USA 1950, 1954, 1958, 1962, 1966, 1970, 1978, 1986, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Quarter Finals, 1970, 1986

Group B

Mexico

Mexico has appeared in the World Cup an impressive 13 times but has never succeeded in getting beyond the quarter finals, at home in 1970 and once againArgentina in 1986. In South Africa, El Tri will undoubtedly be looking to better this performance for the first time on foreign soil.

Group D

Group A

The Stats

South Africa

Group C

Team

Mexico

Is it the turn of EI Tri?

the country’s most famous footballing son, to inspire the team

Brazil France

Fixtures: V France (June 11, Cape Town), V South Africa (June 16, Tshwane/Pretoria), V Mexico (June 22, Rustenburg) DPR Road to South Africa: CONMEBOL vKorea CONCACAF Play-off Winner Results: Uruguay 5-0 Bolivia • Paraguay 1-0 Uruguay • Uruguay 2-2 Chile • Brazil 2-1 Uruguay • Uruguay 1-1 Venezuela • Uruguay 6-0 Peru England • Colombia 0-1 Uruguay • Uruguay 0-0 Ecuador Argentina 2-1 Uruguay Côte • d'Ivoire • Bolivia 2-2 Uruguay • Uruguay 2-0 Paraguay • Chile 0-0 Uruguay • Uruguay 0-4 Brazil • Venezuela 2-2 Uruguay • Peru 1-0 Uruguay • USA Uruguay 3-1 Colombia • Ecuador 1-2 Uruguay • Uruguay 0-1 Argentina Portugal Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 18 6 6 6 28 20 +8 24 Algeria Coach: Oscar Tabarez FIFA World Ranking: 18th World Cup Appearances: 10 (1930, 1950, 1954, 1962, 1966, 1970, 1974, 1986, 1990, 2002) Slovenia Best Results: Winners, 1930, 1950

Group E

12

Netherlands Denmark

home

away

Argentina Talented assortment New Zealand of international players

Spain Greece

Captained by the authoritative Diego Lugano, who combines defensive play with profitable forays into the opposing penalty box, the Uruguay Switzerland side includes a fearsome strike partnership between Diego Forlan and Luis Suarez, well capable of firing the team up, plus a talented Germany assortment of other international players, such as midfielders Honduras Maximiliano Pereira and Diego Perez, as well as defenders Diego Godin and Jorge Fucilee. Australia

Chile

Coach Oscar Tabarez in his second stint as coach – he guided the Serbia Uruguayans to the last 16 in Italy in 1990 – has a close rapport with his youthful squad, many of whom play for clubs in Europe’s major leagues and he feels they have the star quality to advance beyond the Ghana Group Phase.

Paraguay

support will be provided by captain and driving force Javier

Mascherano, backed by the hugely experienced Juan Mexico

Argentina

Group B

consistently brilliant performances for Barcelona. Midfield

Paraguay

Italy

Group A

Group F Group B

South Africa widely regarded as the world’s best soccer player from his

Nigeria

Sebastian, plus a large star-studded squad of youngsters with several youth titles to their names.

Uruguay

Considered by many to be the finest footballer ever, Diego

home

Maradona now has the opportunity to repeat as a coach his

France

a born competitor, Maradona retains the aura that made him such a revered figure during his playing days. Hopefully, this will inspire his players to emulate.

England

Maradona and I have been to two World

Cup finals,USA which is not bad! I hope this will continue next year. In 1986 we had Maradona as the key to our victory and now we have [Lionel] Messi. He’s our decisive player. Algeria

Carlos Bilardo Argentina general manager

Slovenia

Korea Republic away

The Stats Fixtures: V Nigeria (June 12, Johannesburg - JEP), V South Korea (June Greece

finest achievement as a player. Straight-talking, impulsive and

Group D

Group G

The Stats

Uruguay

Argentina’s hopes are largely invested in Lionel Messi, who is

Group C

Uruguay

Italy

Nigeria Although its population is but a little over 3 million, Uruguay nevertheless Slovakia possesses an impressive list of world, Olympic and continental football titles that compares favourably with the world’s best. This includes an Korea Republic impressive 10 previous World Cup appearances, taking home the golden trophy twice in 1930 and 1950.

Group H

Mexico Cameroon

Group D

Group A

South Africa Japan

Denmark

Group F

Group E

Netherlands

Group C

Team

Uruguay

and win the world’s most celebrated trophy once again.

17, Johannesburg - JSC), V Greece (June 22, Polokwane) Road to South Africa: 4th in CONMEBOL Group Results: Argentina 2-0 Chile • Venezuela 0-2 Argentina • Argentina 3-0 Bolivia • Colombia 2-1 Argentina • Argentina 1-1 Ecuador • Brazil 0-0 Argentina • Argentina 1-1 Paraguay • Peru 1-1 Argentina • Argentina 2-1 Uruguay • Chile 1-0 Argentina • Argentina 4-0 Venezuela • Bolivia 6-1 Argentina • Argentina 1-0 Colombia • Ecuador 2-0 Argentina • Argentina 1-3 Brazil • Paraguay 1-0 Argentina • Argentina 2-1 Peru • Uruguay 0-1 Argentina Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 18 8 4 6 23 20 +3 28 Coach: Diego Maradona FIFA World Ranking: 7th World Cup Appearances: 14 (1930, 1934, 1958, 1962, 1966, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Winners, 1978, 1986

Germany

Australia Serbia

Ghana

13


shouldn’t be counted out easily after three previous World Cup appearances, surprising top international teams with fast plays

The Super Eagles’ road to South Africa was very much a struggle from the rear as Tunisia led the group for much of the contest until losing 1-0 to Mozambique while Nigeria pipped Kenya 3-2 in Nairobi, finding themselves at the top of the table only on the final day of the competition.

of the Nigerian squad, with first-rate strikers like Obafemi Martins, who put on some fine goal-scoring performances in the qualifiers, and Locomotiv Moscow’s Osaze Odemwingie.

tough job at the World Cup. We are

The Stats

up against some tough teams like

14

USA Algeria Slovenia

Nigeria forward Chinedu Obasi

Group D

Group C

Argentina, with top players like Messi. It’s

England

away

Fixtures: V Argentina (June 12, Johannesburg - JEP), V Greece (June 17, Mangaung/Bloemfontein), V South Korea (June 22, Durban) Road to South Africa: 1st in CAF Group B Results: Mozambique 0-0 Nigeria • Nigeria 3-0 Kenya • Tunisia 0-0 Nigeria • Nigeria 2-2 Tunisia • Nigeria 1-0 Mozambique • Kenya 2-3 Nigeria Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 6 3 3 0 9 4 +5 12 Coach: Lars Lagerback FIFA World Ranking: 20th World Cup Appearances: 3 (1994, 1998, 2002) Best Results: Round of 16, 1994, 1998

Germany

Australia Serbia

Ghana

Group away

Mexico The Greeks suffered a hammering in all three group matches at their Cameroon

only previous World Cup appearance in the United States in 1994. Since then, Greece has progressed beyond measure, defying the odds Uruguay in 2004 with a triumph in the Euro 2004. This year, the Greek squad will be hoping to progress beyond the group stage to bring some muchFrance needed smiles to the faces of their compatriots back Brazil home. But getting a ticket to South Africa proved to be a hard-won Korea fight DPRfor the Greeks. They finished second in their table behind Switzerland, who handed them defeats at home and away, forcingEngland the Greek side to struggle and finally prevail through a two-legged Côte play-offd'Ivoire against Ukraine.

USA

Portugal The Greek side has solid experience through the ranks, with stubborn defensive players like Liverpool player Sotirios Kyrgiakos, savvy Algeria midfielder and captain Giorgos Karagounis, and striker Theofanis Gekas, top scorer in the UEFA qualifiers. Slovenia

Realistically, the Greeks will be concentrating all their efforts in getting through the group stage, with South Korea, Nigeria and Argentina doing their best to stop them. With such quality players making up the side, Greece don’t need any miracles to achieve this aim.

Netherlands Denmark

Group B Group F

home

Group B

Will the gods smile?

Argentina New Zealand

Paraguay

Nigeria Slovakia Korea Republic

The Stats

Spain Greece Switzerland

Fixtures: V South Korea (June 12, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth), Germany V Nigeria (June 17, Mangaung/Bloemfontein), V Argentina (June 22, Honduras Polokwane) Road to South Africa: UEFA Play-off Winners Results: Luxembourg 0-3 Greece • Latvia 0-2 Greece • Greece 3-0 Australia Moldova • Greece 1-2 Switzerland • Israel 1-1 Greece • Greece 2-1 Israel Chile • Switzerland 2-0 Greece • Moldova 1-1 Greece • Greece 5-2 Latvia • Greece 2-1 Luxembourg Serbia Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 6 2 2 20 10 +10 20 Coach: Otto Rehhagel Ghana FIFA World Ranking: 12th World Cup Appearances: 1 (1994) Best Results: First Round, 1994

Greece

Greece home

South Africa Japan

Greece

Denmark

Italy

Team

France We know that we will have a

Netherlands

Group H

Nigeria Korea Republic

our own game against the best.

Greece

Fixtures: V Greece (June 12, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth), V Argentina (June 17, Johannesburg - JSC), V Nigeria (June 22, Durban) Road to South Africa: 1st in AFC Group B Results: Korea DPR 1-1 Korea Republic • Korea Republic 4-1 United Germany Arab Emirates • Saudi Arabia 0-2 Korea Republic • Iran 1-1 Korea Republic • Korea Republic 1-0 Korea DPR • United Arab Emirates 0-2 Korea Republic • Korea Republic 0-0 Saudi Arabia • Korea Republic 1-1 Iran Australia Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 8 4 4 0 12 4 +8 16 Coach: Huh Jung-Moo Serbia FIFA World Ranking: 47th World Cup Appearances: 7 (1954, 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006) Ghana Best Results: Fourth, 2002

Group D

or better.

Uruguay

important for us to prove that we can play

The Stats

Group F

Group B

Group A

Argentina

the Super Eagles’ fans will be hoping for a quarter finals result

Group E

no surprise that defence looks like being the team’s weak spot.

Group A

Nonetheless, with such a scintillating offensive task force, it’s

for the current Nigerian line-up but based on past performances

Mexico

Korea Republic

Captain Joseph Yobo acts as a solid pillar as centre back.

Getting to South Africa would seem to be a success in itself

South Africa

USA

Making their eighth appearance at the FIFA World Cup in South Africa, the Republic of Korea team is expected to concentrate on the pace and skills of its players to evade the heavier defending Algeria players in teams such as Germany, Greece and Nigeria, as witnessed in their recent 2-0 win over Cote d´Ivoire. If they can maintain their momentum and concentration, they are well capable of advancing to Slovenia the later stages of the tournament.

Group G

Osaze Peter Odemwingie

As in previous games, attacking play is likely to be the hallmark

France

Manchester United winger, Park Ji-Sung, played a pivotal role in the Republic of Korea’s previous two World Cup challenges and is indispensable in creating space and chances for his team-mates. At 24, Park Chu Young is an ever-present threat anywhere near the goal area, while Coach Huh Jung-Moo says he will put allEngland his energy into achieving a good result in South Africa.

Group C

Team

and a characteristic attacking style.

Nigeria

Korea Republic

by the skin of their teeth in the qualifying rounds. But Nigeria

As Asia’s most frequent competitor to the FIFA World Cup tournament, the South Korean team experienced an uncharacteristic bumpy ride Mexico on its way to qualifying. Lacklustre performances in early rounds, ended with a stalemate draw against North Korea in the final round, which Uruguay fortunately sparked a return to form with stylish wins over the UAE and Saudi Arabia, booking their place at 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.

Argentina

Team

of Africa after getting their ticket to the 2010 World Cup only

Most frequent Asian Competitor South Africa

Group D

The so-called Super Eagles are pretty much the dark horses

away

Republic of Korea

Group E

Nigeria

Super Eagles on the attack

home

Group A

Nigeria

B

Group C

Group

B

Italy Paraguay

15


Group

C

Group

C Confederations Cup has given us a real feel experience in South Africa, so it will make for

England

Slovenia

Netherlands

Following their disappointing performance in Germany 2006,

Serbia

the England team, under the direction of new Coach, Fabio Capello, has been reignited with a vibrant team spirit. Their

Trinidad and Tobago. The Yanks ended up at the top of the table after winning sixKorea of their games with two away losses and Republic two draws under long-time coach Bob Bradley.

Greece

The 2010 squad is packed with young, up-coming talent, although very few of the players are well known among international soccer fans. The notable exception is Landon Donovan of Los Angeles Galaxy, the team’s principal goalscoring hope. Everton player Tim Howard will prove

England USA

new spirited performance resulted in nine wins from ten Group

Germany

essential in stifling the chances of opposing teams as one of the best goalkeepers from the English Premier League.

Australia

If the American squad can stay focused and coherent, the USA has an excellent chance

Ghana 6 games, scoring an impressive 34 goals and booking their

of advancing through the group stage.

Serbia Beyond that, the Stars and Stripes

Algeria

slot in South Africa with two games to spare.

will be hoping to improve upon Key players within the talented squad, include forward Wayne Peter Crouch and JermainItaly Defoe both demonstrate a versatile

Manchester United star, Paraguay but nagging injuries could prove to

be a major setback to his performance, as in previous

New Zealand

Sporting an impressive coaching pedigree, Italian Fabio his mark, which has transformed England into a cognitive,

Slovakia disciplined and proud team, eager to perform together and

roup H

with anything less than a win.

Spain

their disappointing 2006 finish

Ghana to get to the quarters or even

Slovenia

Rooney, midfielders Frank Lampard and Steve Gerrard, while

succeed in South Africa. The Three Lions will be disappointed

Brazil

matches, sufficient toNigeria go through to the final round ‘Hexagonal’

Group D

European sides, tipped to do well at South Africa.

Argentina

In the second and third rounds, the USA won seven of eight

a single win in 1966, England is one of the top

Capello, in his relatively short period in charge, has imposed

roup G

France

With 12 previous World Cup appearances and

competitions.

Cameroon

Mexico Uruguay

home

semis and once again kick

away

The Stats

pundits have pinned their hopes firmly on Wayne Rooney, the

Japan

in 1930.

along with Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica, El Salvador and

and omnipresent danger in the opposing goal area. Many

Denmark

decade-long hiatus - in the last five consecutive World Cups

The Americans stormed through qualification in efficient style.

Reignited with a Germany vibrant team spirit Australia

three in the early years of the competition and - after a four-

Fixtures: V England (June 12, Rustenburg), V Slovenia (June 18, Johannesburg - JEP), V Algeria (June 23, Tshwane/Pretoria) Road to South Africa: 1st in CONCACAF Group Results: USA 2-0 Mexico • El Salvador 2-2 USA • USA 3-0 Trinidad and Tobago • Costa Rica 3-1 USA • USA 2-1 Honduras • Mexico 2-1 USA • USA 2-1 El Salvador • Trinidad and Tobago 0-1 USA • Honduras 2-3 USA • USA 2-2 Costa Rica Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 6 2 2 19 13 +6 20 Coach: Bob Bradley FIFA World Ranking: 14th World Cup Appearances: 8 (1930, 1934, 1950, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Third Place, 1930

Netherlands Denmark

off a golden age of American soccer.

Group F

Algeria

South Africa

Greece

Group D

The Stats USA Fixtures: V USA (June 12, Rustenburg), V Algeria (June 18, Cape Town),

Team USA has played in eight previous World Cup competitions,

from 1990 to 2006. Their best result was third place, way back

Group A

Nigeria

Group F

Group C

England

Bob Bradley USA coach

Fabio Capello England coach

away

V Slovenia (June 23, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth) Road to South Africa: 1st in European Group 6 Results: Andorra 0-2 England • Croatia 1-4 England • England 5-1 Kazakhstan • Belarus 1-3 England • England 2-1 Ukraine • Kazakhstan 0-4 England • England 6-0 Andorra • England 5-1 Croatia • Ukraine 1-0 England • England 3-0 Belarus Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 9 0 1 34 6 +28 27 Coach: Fabio Capello FIFA World Ranking: 8th World Cup Appearances: 12 (1950, 1954, 1958, 1962, 1966, 1970, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Winners, 1966

Group E

Argentina

Korea Republic

France home

Cup? We have to!

Group C

Mexico

Return to a golden era?

a good World Cup, I’m sure about that.

Group E

Group A

South Africa

Group B

different. But are we going to win the World

Uruguay

16

for the venues and the weather that we’ll

pressure is different and the mentality is

Team

England

as a player that when you play here the

USA

USA

going to be difficult. I know from experience

Steven Gerrard

We feel this is a group that gives us a

real fair chance to move on. The (FIFA)

Team

Every opponent at a World Cup is

Group B

Italy Paraguay

Japan

van Dono New nZealand Lando

Cameroon

Slovakia

17


Slovenia

The Stats Fixtures: V Algeria (June 13, Polokwane), V USA (June 18, Johannesburg - JEP), V England (June 23, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Netherlands Elizabeth) Road to South Africa: UEFA Play-off Winner Results: Poland 1-1 Slovenia • Slovenia 2-1 Slovakia • Slovenia 2-0 Denmark Northern Ireland • Czech Republic 1-0 Slovenia • Slovenia 0-0 Czech Republic • Northern Ireland 1-0 Slovenia • Slovenia 5-0 San Marino • Slovenia 3-0 Poland • Slovakia 0-2 Slovenia • San Marino 0-3 Slovenia Japan Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 6 2 2 18 4 +14 20 Coach: Matjaz Kek Cameroon FIFA World Ranking: 23rd World Cup Appearances: 1 (2002) Best Results: First Round, 2002

Group G

Team

18

Brazil Korea DPR

This time around, the Algerian squad is more solid and professional than ever and also much younger. Captain Yazid Mansouri brings Italy strength in the midfield as an anchor for the whole team, while Antar Yahia of the French league provides solid support in defence. Weaknesses, if any, Paraguay would be a lack of quality strikers plus the team’s Argentina seeming inability to succeed anywhere away from their home turf.

losing a single game, winning important matches against rivals

with Brazil This time around, Germany will be doing their best to make it championship number four. Germany breezed through their qualification round without Russia and finishing well clear at the top of the Group 4 points

easy section, but it’s certainly not

The great strengths of the German side are experience, tactical

beyond us. I don’t think we need

expertise, toughness and an unbreakable team spirit, which

to fear any of the sides we’re

make the side consistently successful in any competition. Their

up against because we’ve

only stumbling block in recent times has been an inability to

got a very strong squad

beat the top-performing international teams, particularly Brazil,

ourselves. I’m looking forward to it!

Chelsea’s Michael Ballack, team captain, is the cornerstone

away

Beware the giant slayers Honduras Australia

Slovenia is considered the underdog of the UEFA countries and both players and coach will be very happy indeed to get through to the Spain second round.

Low Germany coach

and the Euro 2008, he will be gunning for a victory in South

Mexico

Nigeria

Africa, perhaps his last chance of a win at top-level international competition. Miroslav Klose, another celebrated played in the He too will probably earn his 100th cap for Germany in South

Uruguay

Korea Republic

Africa.

Without any doubt the Germans will only have one objective

Ghana

In the 12 qualifying games, Slovenia only conceded a total of six goals, New Zealand giving some idea of the Slovenian’s impressive, rock-solid defence. Players to watch include Cologne’s Milivoje Novakovic, one of the country’s top strikers,Slovakia and Samir Handanovic, Slovenia’s top goalkeeper who currently plays in the Italian league.

Argentina Joachim

name. After coming so close to winning in the World Cup 2002

German side, won the Golden Shoe in the 2006 World Club.

Tiny Slovenia, a nation of just 2 million people, has virtually achieved the impossible, defeating soccer giants Russia, Poland and the Czech Chile Republic to secure aSerbia place at South Africa. What’s equally amazing is that this is not Slovenia’s first appearance in a World Cup; they also played in the Far East competition in 2002. Most considered the group qualification to be a foregone conclusion, with Poland and Czech Republic expected to finish at the top. In reality, the reverse happened with Slovakia and Slovenia ending up in the pole Italy position, with Slovenia forced into a playoff against the Russians. Once again, the unexpected happened, with Matjaz Kek’s team losing away but winning 1-0 at home and shocking the Russians with an overall Paraguay win on goal difference.

and leader ofAfrica the German squad, with almost 100 caps to his South

ki dols

home

I wouldn’t say we were too lucky

with the draw. It’s not going to be an

Italy and Spain.

Greece Spain

Switzerland

table.

Slovakia Korea Republic

Switzerland Germany

Group

They share the record of appearing in seven World Cup finals

New Zealand Just getting to the World Cup is already an enormous success for Les Nigeria Fennecs. Anything beyond the group round would transform the Algerian players into national heroes.

Slovenia

Germany

championship three times and coming in second four times.

Team

Group D

1930 and 1950 (which they didn’t enter), winning the

inFrance the summer of 2010: to win the World Cup.

Greece

s Po

Portugal Algeria

Australia

But the road to South Africa was a rocky one. In the second and third qualifying rounds, Algeria won all six of their home games but lost three Serbia away fixtures, ending the qualifying group on equal terms with Egypt. Only after a play-off on neutral terrain were the Fennecs able to sink the hopes of their fierce rivals, with no love lost between fans of the Ghana two sides.

Group B

Côte d'Ivoire USA

football, appearing at every World Cup competition except in

The Stats Fixtures: V Australia (June 13, Durban), V Serbia (June 18, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth), V Ghana (June 23, Johannesburg - JSC) Road to South Africa: 1st in UEFA Group 4 Results: Liechtenstein 0-6 Germany • Finland 3-3 Germany • Germany 2-1 Russia • Germany 1-0 Wales • Germany 4-0 Liechtenstein • Wales 0-2 Germany • Azerbaijan 0-2 Germany • Germany 4-0 Azerbaijan • Russia 0-1 Germany • German 1-1 Finland Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 8 2 0 26 5 +21 26 Coach: Joachim Low FIFA World Ranking: 6th World Cup Appearances: 16 (1934, 1938, 1954, 1958, 1962, 1966, 1970, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Winners, 1954, 1974, 1990

England USA

Germany

Group D

Korea DPR England

Germany has one of the most successful records in international

Group A

Group C Group G

France Brazil

Group E

Slovenia

Cameroon Uruguay

Winning team spirit

Group B Group F

Group A Group E

Fixtures: V Slovenia (June 13, Polokwane), V England (June 18, Cape Town), V USA (June 23, Tshwane/Pretoria) Road to South Africa: 1st in CAF Group C Netherlands Results: Rwanda 0-0 Algeria • Algeria 3-1 Egypt • Zambia 0-2 Algeria • Algeria 1-0 Zambia • Algeria 3-1 Rwanda • Egypt 2-0 Algeria Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Denmark 6 4 1 1 South 9 4 +5 13 Africa Coach: Rabah Saadane FIFA World Ranking: 31st Japan World Cup Appearances: 2 (1982, 1986) Mexico Best Results: First Round, 1982 and 1986

Fans of Les Fennecs (the Desert Foxes) will be rooting for their side to progress beyond the group stage at South Africa this year after coming so close in their previous World Cup appearances in 1982 and 1986. In the 24 yearsGermany since their last appearance, Algeria has largely disappeared from global competition, only to claw its way back onto the international soccer map in the last few years.

Group D Group H

The Stats

Slovenia

away

Group F

Algeria

home

BackGreece on the international soccer map

Group H

Group C

Algeria Team

USA

Algeria Korea Republic

France

England

Germany

Nigeria

a Luk

Uruguay

D

Argentina

Group C

Mexico

Group B

Group A

Group

C

South Africa

Australia Serbia

Algeria

Slovenia

home

away

Ghana

19


W61

W62

Match 64 Johannesburg July 12 • 01:30 • Channel 7

20 W58

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L61

Match 61 Cape Town July 7 • 01:30 Channel 9

Match 63 NelsonMandela Bay/ Port Elizabeth

W57

Match 58 Johannesburg July 02 • 01:30 • Channel 7 W50

W53

W54

1A

Match 50 Rustenburg June 27 • 01:30 • Channel 9

A

South Africa

2D

1C

2B

Uruguay

Mexico

W62

July 11 01:30 Channel 11

2C

1D

W59

B

Argentina vs Nigeria

2A

Korea Rep

Nigeria

Argentina

France

Korea Rep vs Greece

2F

1E

Match 52 Johannesburg June 28 • 01:30 • Channel 3

Greece vs Nigeria

England vs USA

Johannesburg - JSC June 11 • 21:00 • Channel 3

Uruguay vs France

Cape Town June 12 • 01:30 • Channel 7

South Africa vs Uruguay Tshwane/Pretoria June 17 • 01:30 • Channel 7

Johannesburg - JEP June 12 • 21:00 • Channel 11

Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth June 12 • 18:30 • Channel 3

Mangaung/Bloemfontein June 17 • 21:00 • Channel 9

Rustenburg June 13 • 01:30 • Channel 3

France vs Mexico

Mexico vs Uruguay

France vs South Africa

Argentina vs Korea Rep

Nigeria vs Korea Rep

Greece vs Argentina

England vs Algeria

South Africa vs Mexico

Polokwane June 18 • 01:30 • Channel 11

Rustenburg June 22 • 21:00 • Channel 3

Mp

Team

W

D

Mangaung/Bloemfontein June 22 • 21:00 • Channel 11

L

Gf

Ga

Johannesburg - JSC June 17 • 18:30 • Channel 7

Mp

Team

Pts

E

Netherlands

Denmark

Netherlands vs Denmark

Japan

Italy

Cameroon

Japan vs Cameroon

Netherlands vs Japan

Italy vs Paraguay

Durban June 19 • 18:30 • Channel 11

Cape Town June 15 • 01:30 • Channel 3

Cameroon vs Denmark

Denmark vs Japan

Cameroon vs Netherlands

Italy vs New Zealand

Rustenburg June 25 • 01:30 • Channel 11

Mp

D

L

Gf

Ga

Pts

Cape Town June 19 • 01:30 • Channel 9

Polokwane June 13 • 18:30 • Channel 7

Slovenia vs England

Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth June 23 • 21:00 • Channel 3

Mp

W

D

Cape Town June 25 • 01:30 • Channel 7

L

Gf

Ga

Pts

Nelspruit June 20 • 21:00 • Channel 9

Team

W

D

2E

1F

Slovenia vs USA

Germany vs Australia

Johannesburg - JEP June 18 • 21:00 • Channel 7

Durban June 14 • 01:30 • Channel 9

USA vs Algeria

Ghana vs Australia

Tshwane/Pretoria June 23 • 21:00 • Channel 7

L

Gf

Ga

Rustenburg June 19 • 21:00 • Channel 3

New Zealand vs Slovakia

Slovakia

Cote d’Ivoire

Slovakia vs Paraguay

Cote d’Ivoire vs Portugal

Korea DPR

Brazil vs Korea DPR

Honduras

Brazil vs Cote d’Ivoire

Honduras vs Chile

Mangaung/Bloemfontein June 20 • 18:30 • Channel 11

Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth June 15 • 21:00 • Channel 7

Johannesburg - JEP June 16 • 1:30 • Channel 3

Johannesburg - JSC June 21 • 01:30 • Channel 3

Nelspruit June 16 • 18:30 • Channel 9

Slovakia vs Italy

Paraguay vs New Zealand

Portugal vs Korea DPR

Portugal vs Brazil

Korea DPR vs Cote d’Ivoire

Spain vs Honduras

Mp

Serbia vs Ghana

Germany vs Serbia

Ghana vs Germany

Australia vs Serbia

Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth Tshwane/Pretoria June 18 • 18:30 • Channel 3 June 13 • 21:00 • Channel 11

Johannesburg - JSC June 24 • 01:30 • Channel 7

W

D

Polokwane June 24 • 21:00 • Channel 11

L

Gf

Ga

Pts

Cape Town June 21 • 18:30 • Channel 7

Team

Durban June 25 • 21:00 • Channel 11

Mp

W

W

D

Nelspruit June 24 • 01:30 • Channel 9

L

D

Nelspruit June 25 • 21:30 • Channel 9

L

Gf

Ga

Pts

Spain

Chile

Rustenburg June 15 • 18:30 • Channel 11

Johannesburg - JEP June 24 • 21:30 • Channel 3

Serbia

Gf

Ga

Pts

H

Brazil

Portugal

Match 56 Cape Town June 30 • 01:30 • Channel 3

Ghana

Mp

Team

Pts

D

Australia

Germany

2G

1H

Match 55 Tshwane/Pretoria June 29 • 21:00 • Channel 7

Slovenia

Algeria vs Slovenia

Team

G

New Zealand

Paraguay

Mangaung/Bloemfontaine June 14 • 21:00 • Channel 7

Team

W

Polokwane June 23 • 01:30 • Channel 3

W56

2H

Algeria

F

Johannesburg - JSC June 14 • 18:30 • Channel 3

Tshwane/Pretoria June 20 • 01:30 • Channel 7

Republic Durban June 23 • 01:30 • Channel 7

W55

Match 54 Johannesburg June 29 • 01:30 • Channel 9

C

USA

England

W52

1G

Match 53 Durban June 28 • 21:00 • Channel 11

Greece

W60

Match 60 Johannesburg July 04 • 01:30 • Channel 9

W51

1B

Match 51 Mangaung/Bloemfontein June 27 • 21:00 • Channel 7

21

Match 62 Durban July 08 • 01:30 • Channel 3

Match 59 Cape Town July 03 • 21:00 • Channel 11

Match 57 Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth July 02 • 21:00 • Channel 3

W49

Match 49 Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth June 26 • 21:00 • Channel 11

L62

Johannesburg - JEP June 22 • 01:30 • Channel 3

Team

Switzerland

Spain vs Switzerland

Chile vs Switzerland

Chile vs Spain

Switzerland vs Honduras

Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth Durban June 21 • 21:00 • Channel 9 June 16 • 21:00 • Channel 11

Tshwane/Pretoria June 26 • 01:30 • Channel 7

Mp

W

D

Namgaung/Bloemfontein June 26 • 01:30 • Channel 3

L

Gf

Ga

Pts


Team

a new red and blue kit and going by the nickname Beli Orlovi or the White Eagles. Drawn in the same group as France in the qualifying rounds, Serbia ended above Les Bleus, earning their pass to South Africa with a game to spare. Although finishing above France in the points table, Serbia lost away to the French side and only managed a draw at home. As in the 2006 World Cup, the Serbian team is once again rock

Group B

Argentina

solid in defence. Manchester United’s Nemanja Vidic, 2008/9 English Premier League player of the season, together with set-piece partner Branislav Jovanovic, provide a seemingly

Nigeria

impenetrable defensive wall. Milan Jovanovic, playing in the

Pim Verbeek reckons positional sense and aerial ability of Tim Cahill, Netherlands with Harry Kewell and Brett Emerton on the flanks and Vince Grella and Jason Culina in the center, among a wealth of talented South players, Africa Denmark plus his proven tactical acumen, should see the Socceroos reaching the upper echelons of the competition in South Africa.

Greece

Eagles, which are playing in their first ever World Cup as an independent team.

Paraguay

Ghana

Group C Group G

After that, anything is a bonus for the White

Brazil home

away

England Black Stars ready to scintillate Korea DPR The only African side to pass through the group stage at the 2006 USA World Cup in Germany, Ghana is keen to show the world that they are Côte d'Ivoire the African team to watch at the 2010 World Cup.

Fixtures: V Ghana (June 13, Tshwane/Pretoria), V Germany (June 18, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth), V Australia (June 23, Nelspruit) Road to South Africa: 1st in UEFA Group 7 Results: Serbia 2-0 Faroe Islands • France 2-1 Serbia • Serbia 3-1 Lithuania • Austria 1-3 Serbia • Romania 2-3 Serbia • Serbia 1-0 Austria • Faroe Islands 0-2 Serbia • Serbia 1-1 France • Serbia 5-0 Romania • Lithuania 2-1 Serbia Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 7 1 2 22 8 +14 22 Coach: Radomir Antic FIFA World Ranking: 16th World Cup Appearances: 10 (1930, 1950, 1954, 1958, 1962, 1974, 1982, 1990, 1998, 2006) Best Results: Fourth, 1930, 1962

Ghana’s pre-eminence on the pitch is founded on a world-class midfield with the likes of Chelsea player Michael Essien, Sulley Muntari and Netherlands captain Stephen Appiah, who are efficient at stopping opposing attacks dead in their tracks while generating goal-making opportunities for the trio of strikers. John Mensah and John Paintsil together with Premier Denmark League goalie Richard Kingson maintain a solid defensive wall.

Group E

The Stats

Japan The Black Stars are keen to show their mettle at South Africa but face stiff competition in group D against rising stars Australia, an ever-present Serbia and unrelenting top seeds Germany. Realistically aiming for Cameroon second place position in the group, Ghana will be going all out for a win against Australia in their second game on June 19. Brazil Korea DPR

Group

Spain Germany Switzerland Australia Honduras Serbia Chile

Algeria

The Black Stars, as the Ghanaian side is known, earned their ticket to Portugal South Africa after going unbeaten in the four opening matches of their final round, against Mali, Benin and Sudan. Their only Slovenia slip, a shock 1-0 defeat at the hands of Benin, came after they had already qualified.

Group G

ć di Vi ja

away

Italy

Nigeria New Zealand

France

an

22

Group F

home

Paraguay

World Cup Appearances: 2 (1974, 2006) Best Results: Round of 16, 2006

Drawn against Australia, Germany and Ghana, the Serbian

em

Ghana

Fixtures: V Germany (June 13, Durban), V Ghana (June 19, Rustenburg), V Serbia (June 23, Nelspruit) Ghana Road to South Africa: 1st in AFC Group A Results: Uzbekistan 0-1 Australia • Australia 4-0 Qatar • Bahrain 0-1 Australia • Japan 0-0 Australia • Australia 2-0 Uzbekistan • Qatar 0-0 Australia • Australia 2-0 Bahrain • Australia 2-1 Japan Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Italy 8 6 2 0 12 1 +11 20 Coach: Pim Verbeek Argentina FIFA World Ranking: 20th

Korea Republic Slovakia

N

Group D

Serbia

Serbia

Uruguay Cameroon

Germany Australia

Mexico Japan

The Stats

Australia

wants for true world-class strikers.

side will probably make it through the group stage.

Greece

Group B

Group A

The Socceroos impressed in a grueling 14-match qualifying campaign, overcoming many talented national teams to finish topSlovenia of Group 1 and become one of the first nations to qualify for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.

Belgian league, is dangerous in attack, although the squad

Korea Republic

USA

The current squad, with a new Dutch coach, Pim Verbeek, features many of the Germany 2006 veterans and considers itself more confident, experienced and battle tested than before. Algeria

Germany

Australia

as Serbia since 2006, this will be their first World Cup, wearing Radomir Antic Serbia coach

Following a 32-year hiatus from the world soccer stage, Australia returned to international recognition with a strong and spirited campaign at the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, which propelled them through England to the knockout-stage, where Italy scored a last-minute goal to knock Guus Hiddink’s valiant team out of the tournament.

Ghana

The Stats Fixtures: V Serbia (June 13, Tshwane/Pretoria), Italy V Australia (June 19, Rustenburg), V Germany (June 23, Johannesburg - JSC) Road to South Africa: 1st in CAF Group D Results: Ghana 1-0 Benin • Mali 0-2 Ghana • Sudan 0-2 Ghana • Ghana Paraguay 2-0 Sudan • Benin 1-0 Ghana • Ghana 2-2 Mali Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 6 4 1 1 9 3 +6 13 New Zealand Coach: Milovan Rajevac FIFA World Ranking: 32nd World Cup Appearances: 1 (2006) Best Results: Round of 16, 2006 Slovakia

Ghana

has appeared in a total of 10 World Cups. Playing independently

Greece

away

Team

a great World Cup.

Playing as Yugoslavia and later Serbia and Montenegro, Serbia

Nigeria

Team

my players and I’m sure they’re going to have

France home

Group D

we’re always looking to improve. I believe in

Rock solid defence

A wealth of talent

D

Korea Republic

Group B Group F

Serbia

We’re a very positive-thinking group and

Serbia

Uruguay

Group D Group H

best Serbian team there has ever been.

Mexico

Argentina

Group F

technically strong and without a doubt the

Australia

South Africa

Group H

My team is very young, physically and

Group C

Group A Group E

Group

D

Spain Switzerland

23


We have a mission: that mission is to be champions of the world.

Oranje are back once again and could prove to be a dangerous side to beat in South Africa. Uruguay

Robben forming an invincible trio. Other key players in the

USA

current Oranje squad include Captain Giovanni van Bronckhorst,

Group G

Persie, hot favourite Wesley Sneijder and fast-paced Arjen

Group D

Group C

The Netherlands offensive line is very strong with Robin van

Germany

(June 19, Tshwane/Pretoria), V Japan (June 24, Rustenburg) Road to South Africa: 1st in UEFA Group 1 Results: Hungary 0-0 Denmark • Portugal 2-3 Denmark • Denmark 3-0 Malta • Malta 0-3 Denmark • Denmark 3-0 Albania • Sweden 0-1 Denmark • Denmark 1-1 Portugal • Albania 1-1 Denmark • Denmark 1-0 Sweden • Denmark 0-1 Hungary Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 6 3 1 16 5 +11 21 Coach: Morten Olsen FIFA World Ranking: 35th World Cup Appearances: 3 (1986, 1998, 2002) Best Results: Quarter Finals, 1998

Cameroon

Netherlands team under their new coach, Bert van Marwijk, competition.

Denmark The Stats Japan Fixtures: V Netherlands (June 14, Johannesburg - JSC), V Cameroon

Greece

are determined to provide a stellar performance during the

Group F

Group E

Nigeria

Netherlands

Brazil

Serbia

Algeria

Korea DPR

Marwijk said he never expected his team to win every qualifying

Denmark Japan home

24

away

Cameroon

Group

losing narrowly to heavyweights Brazil. Now the Olsen Gang

Spain is back once again, the only Scandinavian side to reach South Switzerland

home

block for the Danes, although the final 1-0 loss to this team

away

was just academic, having already qualified for South Africa.

Chile

The Denmark squad is notably strong in midfield which makes it tough for opponents to get within striking distance of the Danish goal. The Danish Dynamite’s main weakness is up front, with a dearth of top-quality strikers. Players to watch in

The Stats

this side include Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner, an

Fixtures: V Denmark (June 14, Johannesburg - JSC), V Japan (June 19, Durban), V Cameroon (June 24, Cape Town) Road to South Africa: 1st in UEFA Group 9 Results: Macedonia 1-2 Netherlands • Netherlands 2-0 Iceland • Norway 0-1 Netherlands • Netherlands 3-0 Scotland • Netherlands 4-0 Macedonia • Iceland 1-2 Netherlands • Netherlands 2-0 Norway • Scotland 0-1 Netherlands Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 8 8 0 0 17 2 +15 24 Coach: Bert van Marwijk FIFA World Ranking: 4th World Cup Appearances: 8 (1934, 1938, 1974, 1978, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2006) Best Results: Runners-Up, 1974, 1978

Group F

Group E

Netherlands

competitions, reaching the quarter finals stage in 1998 before

fierce rivals Sweden. Hungary proved to be more of a stumbling Honduras

I am very proud of their success so far. If they keep up the same form and attitude, they can beat anyone,” he said.

Denmark have appeared in three previous World Cup

by winning matches against group favourites Portugal and

Ghana

Slovenia match, but, “the players resolutely put our plan into action and

Danish Dynamite to explode on the scene Slovakia

With just one defeat in ten matches, Denmark qualified in style

Portugal

Calm, affable, discrete and approachable, new Coach Bert van

New Zealand

previous best performance.

Côte d'Ivoire

Rafael van der Vaart, Klaas Jan Huntelaar and Nigel De Jong.

Denmark Paraguay

Africa, and they will be looking to go one better than their

Australia

Joris Mathijsen, Andre Ooijer, Dirk Kuyt, Mark van Bommel,

Italy

Denmark

We sley

Morten Olsen Denmark coach

Following a robust and relatively easy qualifying campaign, Norway, and finishing at the top of UEFA Group 9, the current

to play well and Ghana hope also to be lucky. That always helps!

Korea Republic

picking up eight wins from eight games, including Scotland and France

the clear favourites in this section. We hope

Slovenia

Team

Sne ijde r

well and I think it’s obvious that they must be

but in both cases failing to take home the trophy. Now the

England

Serbia

that’s intriguing. We know Dutch football very

Group H

Mexico 1970s, impressing the world with two World Cup performances

Group B

Group A

Netherlands

The Netherlands reached their peak in world football in the

Argentina

It’s a group with different styles of

football from different continents, and I think

Algeria

The Netherlands “… theySouth canAfrica beat anyone”

Australia

Frank de Boer assistant coach

Team

USA

E

Germany

Group D

Group

Group C

E

England

experienced international player despite being only 22 years of age, and show-stopping goalkeeper Thomas Sorensen, who

Italy

also played in the 2002 World Cup. With such strong performances in previous World Cup

Paraguay

New Zealand Slovakia

competitions the Danish Dynamite under popular team coach Morten Olsen will be hoping for nothing less than a quarter

Da

ni

el

finals finish.

Ag

ge

r

25


Germany

home

away

Denmark

Japan has won the last five editions of the AFC Asian Cup and is considered one of the strongest squads in Asian football, with high Uruguay Paraguay hopes for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa, which is their fourth appearance at the global showpiece.

Japan South Africa

New Zealand Their first objective isArgentina to improve on their previous performance at the

Cameroon Mexico

Germany 2006 tournament, when they were ousted at the first hurdle following a resounding 4-1 defeat by Brazil. Slovakia

Group C

Portugal USA

Group B

Italy

Nigeria

No team is superior to Italy. I don’t want

to say that we’re better than everyone, but you might say that we’re not inferior to any other team.Korea

France

Republic

Greece

Marcello Lippi Italy coach

Nigeria

Group C

Key players in their current game plan include former Celtic and current Espanyol playmakerKorea Shunsuke Nakamura; young midfielder Keisuke Republic Honda, a gifted left-footer, currently with VWEngland Venlo; and solid defender Spain and captain, Yuji Nakazawa, holder of over 90 senior caps.

Group H

Group G

Fixtures: V Cameroon (June 14, Mangaung/Bloemfontein), V Netherlands (June 19, Durban), V Denmark (June 24, Rustenburg) Uruguay Road to South Africa: 2nd in AFC Group A Results: Bahrain 2-3 Japan • Japan 1-1 Uzbekistan • Qatar 0-3 Japan Brazil • Japan 0-0 Australia • Japan 1-0 Bahrain • Uzbekistan 0-1 Japan • Japan France 1-1 Qatar • Australia 2-1 Japan Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 8 4 3 1 Korea 11 DPR 6 +5 15 Coach: Takeshi Okada FIFA World Ranking: 45th World Cup Appearances: 3 (1998, 2002, 2006)d'Ivoire Côte England Best Results: Round of 16, 2002

Greece

Japan Coach, Takeshi Okada, has stated there are no tactical changes Switzerland USA to be implemented in the Japan team’s game plan, as he had already set his basic tactical approach for winning against the world’s top teams Germany during the qualifyingHonduras rounds and intends to continue with this same approach during the 2010 FIFA World Cup tournament, where their Algeria initial target is to reach the semi-finals.

Group D

The Stats

Group F

Group E

Netherlands

Group A

Team

Japan

Mexico One of the strongest squads in Asian football

Argentina

Serbia

Slovenia

Ghana

Can they pull it off, yet again! Defending champions Italy is the only team other than Brazil to win the World Cup tournament twice in succession, in 1934 and 1938. After victory in 2006, the Italians will be hoping for

Germany

a repeat performance in South Africa. In qualifying for South Africa 2010, Italy topped Group 8 by employing their traditional efficiency and pragmatism to record

Chile Australia

Algeria

Italy

Italy

Group South Africa

Team

Group A

Japan Ghana

Slovenia

Group B

Serbia

Algeria

F

Australia

Group D

USA

Group

Group

Group

E

England

Australia

seven wins and three draws, while firing in 18 goals

Serbia

As one of the finest goalkeepers on the planet,

and conceding seven.

Gianluigi Buffon is one of two pillars in the Italian defence; the other being their Captain

Ghana

Slovenia

Fabio Cannavaro, with his superb positioning sense and the vast

26

talent; while strikers Alberto

New Zealand home

Chile

At South Africa, anything less than their 1990 performance – the quarter finals – will be considered a disappointment. All eyes will be on Samuel Eto’o and the other Indomitable Lions to deliver what d'Ivoire everyone knows Côte they are capable of.

Portugal

away

Lippi

possesses

extensive experience

The Stats

Slovakia

Fixtures: V Paraguay (June 14, Cape Town), V New Zealand (June 20, Nelspruit), V Slovakia (June 24, Johannesburg - JEP) Road to South Africa: 1st in UEFA Group 8 Results: Cyprus 1-2 Italy • Italy 2-0 Georgia • Bulgaria 0-0 Italy • Italy 2-1 Montenegro • Montenegro 0-2 Italy • Italy 1-1 Republic of Ireland • Georgia 0-2 Italy • Italy 2-0 Bulgaria • Republic of Ireland 2-2 Italy • Italy 3-2 Cyprus Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 7 3 0 18 7 +11 24 Coach: Marcello Lippi FIFA World Ranking: 5th World Cup Appearances: 16 (1934, 1938, 1950, 1954, 1962, 1966, 1970, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Winners, 1934, 1938, 1982, 2006

and national coach. He is looking forward to the tournament in South Africa and feels confident in the ability of his team to “pull it off, yet again!”

Spain

Switzerland Honduras Chile

o

Switzerland With their star striker from Inter Milan at the top of his form, the Cameroon squad is expected to excel up front. But the side’s midfield Brazil is also reckoned to be hard to beat with quality players like Jean Makoun, Honduras Stephane M’bia and Alexandre Song. Idriss Carlos Kameni, the ‘Phenomenon’ of Espanyol and one of the top goalkeepers from Africa, will prove a tough nut to crack for the opposing sides. DPR Korea

One of the Titans in world

as a club manager

The Indomitables faltered a bit in the first matches of their qualification round, losing to Togo and drawing to Morocco, while underdogs Gabon Cameroon won their first two matches. Things picked up a bit with the arrival of coach Paul Le Guen,Spain giving the Cameroonians four wins in a row and a ticket to their sixth World Cup.

Group H

Fixtures: V Japan (June 14, Mangaung/Bloemfontein), V Denmark (June Brazil 19, Tshwane/Pretoria), V Netherlands (June 24, Cape Town) Road to South Africa:1st in CAF Group A Results: Togo 1-0 Cameroon • Cameroon 0-0 Morocco • Gabon 0-2 Korea Cameroon • Cameroon 2-1 Gabon • Cameroon 3-0DPR Togo • Morocco 0-2 Cameroon Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 6 4 1 1 Côte 9 d'Ivoire 2 +7 13 Coach: Paul Le Guen FIFA World Ranking: 19th World Cup Appearances: 5 (1982, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002) Portugal Best Results: Quarter Finals, 1990

Paraguay

football, Coach Marcello

Slovakia

Group G

The Stats

danger” near any goalmouth.

ttus

Japan

1990 put the country far ahead of any other African team in terms of World Cup experience. Now the Indomitable Lions are back once again New Zealand with arguably the best squad ever and one of the world’s best strikers Japan in the form of Samuel Eto’o.

of being an “ever and present

Ga

Paraguay Denmark Cameroon’s five World Cup appearances with a quarter finals finish in

Simone Pepe are each capable

aro

Denmark

Gilardino, Antonio di Natale and

Ge nn

away

Italy

Group F

Netherlands home Italy Africa’s indomitable spirit

Group E

Group F

Cameroon

Gennaro Gattuso is an all-round

Group H

Group E

Netherlands

Cameroon

Group G

Team

Cameroon

experience of his 130 caps. Midfielder

27


away

Group H

The Stats

Paraguay will make their eighth FIFA World Cup finals

Fixtures: V Italy (June 14, Cape Town), V Slovakia (June 20, Mangaung/ Bloemfontein), V New Zealand (June 24, Polokwane) Road to South Africa: 3rd in CONMEBOL Group Results: Peru 0-0 Paraguay • Paraguay 1-0 Uruguay • Paraguay 5-1 Ecuador • Chile 0-3 Paraguay • Paraguay 2-0 Brazil • Bolivia 4-2 Paraguay • Argentina 1-1 Paraguay • Paraguay 2-0 Venezuela • Colombia 0-1 Paraguay • Paraguay 1-0 Peru • Uruguay 2-0 Paraguay • Ecuador 1-1 Paraguay • Paraguay 0-2 Chile • Brazil 2-1 Paraguay • Paraguay 1-0 Bolivia • Paraguay 1-0 Argentina • Venezuela 1-2 Paraguay • Paraguay 0-2 Colombia Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 18 10 3 5 24 16 +8 33 Coach: Gerardo Martino FIFA World Ranking: 30th World Cup Appearances: 7 (1930, 1950, 1958, 1986, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Round of 16, 1986, 1998, 2002

Spain

Switzerland Honduras Chile

appearance and their fourth in a row at 2010 FIFA World Cup 2006, the Paraguay team, under the guidance of their Argentinean coach Gerardo Martino, are determined to avoid a similar outcome this time around. Coach Martino can choose from a large core of international players with a wealth of experience playing for foreign clubs in Europe. These include proven strikers Roque Santa Cruz, Nelson Haedo Valdez and Oscar Cardozo, plus goalkeeper Justo Villar and midfielders Edgar Barreto and Cristian Riveros.

CONMEBOL rankings, below Brazil and Chile, but above Argentina and Uruguay. The team conceded just 16 goals in 18 matches, an indication of the strength of Paraguay’s defence. a

nt

e

qu

Ro

Sa

C

Based on their impressive q u a l i fi c a t i o n c a m p a i g n , Paraguay are entitled to an increasing air of confidence as they approach their fourth consecutive World Cup appearance, relying on experienced players backed by a host of young talent eager to make their mark in South Africa.

28

England Set to claim the unique honour of player and manager in his nation’s d'Ivoire only two World Cup appearances, Ricki Herbert is fullCôte of optimism for his team’s chances, saying his team has given four years of total USA commitment to the competition, resulting in them being back and ready Portugal for South Africa 2010!

South Africa. Stunned by their first round elimination in Germany

The Albirroja qualified for South Africa in third place in the

z ru

Following an unsuccessful bid four years ago, Ricki Herbert has since Cameroon turned the All Whites into a cohesive and formidable team. Captain Uruguay Ryan Nelsen is a resolute defender, while Shane Smeltz possesses a prolific all-round finishing ability and goalkeeper Mark Paston demonstrated his sharpness with an impressive penalty save in the France Brazil Bahrain qualifier. Chris Killen has proved to be the perfect foil for Smeltz, while Rory Fallon and Chris Wood have both revealed good quality aerial talent. Korea DPR

Slovakia

The Stats

Argentina New Zealand Nigeria Slovakia Korea Republic

Fixtures: V Slovakia (June 15, Rustenburg), V Italy (June 20, Nelspruit), V Paraguay (June 24, Polokwane) Road to South Africa: OFC v AFC Play-off Winner Greece Spain Results: Fiji 0-2 New Zealand • Vanuatu 1-2 New Zealand • New Zealand 4-1 Vanuatu • New Caledonia 1-3 New Zealand • New Zealand 3-0 New Caledonia • New Zealand 0-2 Fiji Team Pld W D L Switzerland GF GA GD Pts 6 5 0 1 14 5 +9 15 Germany Coach: Ricki Herbert FIFA World Ranking: 78th World Cup Appearances: 1 (1982) Best Result: First Round, 1982

Honduras

Australia Chile

Algeria

Serbia

Slovenia

Ghana

Netherlands home

away

Can they surprise again? Denmark The 2010 World Cup in South Africa will be Slovakia’s first World Cup appearance as an independent nation, although Slovak players have Japan participated on eight previous occasions as part of the Czechoslovakian national team, which came in second in 1934 and 1962.

DPR Slovakia is notably solid in defence, with goalkeeper Korea Jan Mucha and Liverpool center back Martin Skrtel providing support for the squad. A lack of experienced international-level players, particularly strikers, Côte d'Ivoire might prove an obstacle to Slovakia’s progression in South Africa. On paper, the odds of Slovakia getting much furtherPortugal than the group stage are slim. But if they can repeat the magic they displayed against reputedly greater rivals during the qualification stages then the world could be in for another surprise.

Italy Paraguay New Zealand

Cameroon

Slovakia came out on top in the European qualification Group 3, sinking the hopes of favourites Poland and Czech Republic. Their nearest rivals and underdogs Slovenia proved to be the biggest thorn in the sides of the Slovaks, handing them their only two lossesBrazil of the qualifiers at home and away.

New Zealand

A large core of experienced international players

Mexico

Paraguay

Slovakia

The Stats Fixtures: V New Zealand (June 15, Spain Rustenburg), V Paraguay (June 20, Mangaung/Bloemfontein), V Italy (June 24, Johannesburg - JEP) Road to South Africa: 1st in European Group 3 Results: Slovakia 2-1 Northern Ireland • Slovenia 2-1 Slovakia • San Switzerland Marino 1-3 Slovakia • Slovakia 2-1 Poland • Czech Republic 1-2 Slovakia • Slovakia 7-0 San Marino • Slovakia 2-2 Czech Republic • Northern Ireland 0-2 Slovakia • Slovakia 0-2 Slovenia • Poland 0-1 Slovakia Team Pld W D L Honduras GF GA GD Pts 10 7 1 2 22 10 +12 22 Coach: Vladimir Weiss FIFA World Ranking: 38th Chile World Cup Appearances: First appearance Best Results: Runners-Up, 1934, 1962

Slovakia

home

Slovakia

Paraguay

Denmark

After finishing top in the Oceania group, New ZealandSouth played and won Africa a two-leg play off against Bahrain, sufficient to earn them a ticket to Japan South Africa 2010.

Italy

Team

Team

New Zealand

Under their new coach, Ricki Herbert, New Zealand are making their Netherlands first appearance on the world soccer stage in 28 years, following their debut in Spain in 1982, when Ricki was a player.

Team

Paraguay

away

Group B Group F

Italy

Gerardo Martino Paraguay coach

home

Group D Group H

best teams in the world.

Ghana

Group F

opportunity for them to play against the very

Slovenia

Group H

all of our young players. It is a great

F

‘… a cohesive and formidable team’

Group E

Ghana

Group F

Paraguay

best skills. This will be a great experience for

New Zealand Group A Group E

all our opponents in good form and with our

Serbia

Group C Group G

We have some of the best players in

the world. What is important is that we face

Australia

Algeria

Group G

Serbia

USA

Germany

Group

Australia

England

Group D

Group C

Group D

Group

F

Germany

29


The team to watch…

Cameroon

Portugal are candidates for the trophy. We

have great players and we made a statement Paraguay Netherlands

with great pedigree and determination. This is a unique moment.

New Zealand Denmark

Liedson

SlovakiaJapan

Italy

Strong contender for the Paraguay later stages … Despite displaying some dazzling football as finalists at UEFA EURO 2004 and semi-finalists Germany 2006, landing a NewatZealand

Bearing in mind their impressive record as five-times world

major prize continues to evade Portugal and expectations are

champions and competitors at every World Cup tournament,

therefore sure to be running high for a good run this time,

Cameroon

Brazil is always viewed as a strong contender to “seize the

Korea DPR

With five wins in a row in the qualifying round, including an impressive 4-0 rout of

Côte d'Ivoire

Uruguay and dramatic 3-1 defeat of arch-rivals Argentina (confirming their passage to South Africa), Brazil, once again, takes up the mantle of “Forget the rest, we’re the team to beat – if you can!” Picking players in a country replete with so many talented aka

individuals will always be tough, rdo K

but strong contenders include

Rica

Kaka (Real Madrid); Luis Fabiano, a world-class finisher; keeper Julio Cesar, vital to defence; and

home

away

The Stats Portugal Fixtures: V North Korea (June 15, Johannesburg - JEP), V Cote d’Ivoire (June 20, Johannesburg - JSC), V Portugal (June 25, Durban) Road to South Africa: 1st in CONMEBOL Group Results: Colombia 0-0 Brazil • Brazil 5-0 Ecuador • Peru 1-1 Brazil • Brazil 2-1 Uruguay • Paraguay 2-0 Brazil • Brazil 0-0 Argentina • Chile 0-3 Brazil • Brazil 0-0 Bolivia • Venezuela 0-4 Brazil • Brazil 3-0 Colombia • Ecuador 1-1 Brazil • Brazil 3-0 Peru • Uruguay 0-4 Brazil • Brazil 2-1 Paraguay • Argentina 1-3 Brazil • Brazil 4-2 Chile • Bolivia 2-1 Brazil • Brazil 0-0 Venezuela Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 18 9 7 2 33 11 +22 34 Coach: Dunga FIFA World Ranking: 1st World Cup Appearances: 18 (1930, 1934, 1938, 1950, 1954, 1958, 1962, 1966, 1970, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Winners, 1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, 2002

new boy Ramires, their energetic young midfielder. Whatever happens, all squads know – deep down - Brazil is the team to watch out for!

We have to learn to live with the

favourites’ tag. We mustn’t let it turn into something negative, as it has done in previous years. Kaka

Slovakia

preferably all the way to the finals in South Africa. Qualification wasn’t an overwhelming success for Portugal however. The team started out falteringly,

Switzerland Brazil

earning just six points out of a possible

Group H

crown will be considered a failure.

Spain

Group G

aware that anything short of a sixth world

Brazil

Group H

1994 USA tournament, Coach Dunga is fully

Group G

crown” once again. Having skippered Brazil to victory in the

Group

Portugal

Portugal

Japan

Team

Group F

Group E

Brazil

Denmark

Italy

Group E

Brazil

Group

Team

Ghana

Slovenia Netherlands

G

Serbia

Group F

G

Ghana Algeria

Slovenia

Spain

15. In the second half of the qualifying rounds, Portugal pulled from behind with a run of impressive victories,

Honduras Korea DPR

finishing second in the table behind

Switzerland

Denmark. Portugal then beat Bosnia-Herzegovina in the

Chile

Côte d'Ivoire Portugal

play-off, earning a pass to South Africa. All eyes will be on Captain, Cristiano

Honduras

Cri

stia

no

Ro

nal

Chile

Ronaldo, who excels on the big occasion and whose unique talent for creating goals and ability to snatch goals, is legendary. Goalkeeper Rui Patricio is also a favourite for selection, home

away

The Stats Fixtures: V Cote d’Ivoire (June 15, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth), V North Korea (June 21, Cape Town), V Brazil (June 25, Durban) Road to South Africa: UEFA Play-off Winners Results: Malta 0-4 Portugal • Portugal 2-3 Denmark • Sweden 0-0 Portugal • Portugal 0-0 Albania • Portugal 0-0 Sweden • Albania 1-2 Portugal • Denmark 1-1 Portugal • Hungary 0-1 Portugal • Portugal 3-0 Hungary • Portugal 4-0 Malta Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 5 4 1 17 5 +12 19 Coach: Carlos Queiroz FIFA World Ranking: 3rd World Cup Appearances: 4 (1966, 1986, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Third, 1966

as are defenders Paulo Ferreira and surefooted Ricardo Carvalho, plus midfielders Raul Meireles, Tiago, Deco and Moutino. Nani, Simao and Liedson will prove invaluable on the attacking front. Born in Mozambique, Carlos Queiroz was South Africa’s coach in the past that also included a 10-month stint as manager of Real Madrid, sandwiched between two sessions as No. 2 to Sir Alec Ferguson at Manchester United. All this could be of great value to his current team, which is increasingly considered a strong contender for the later stages of the competition.

30

31

do


Group E

Slovenia

Netherlands Denmark

Korea DPR Côte d'Ivoire

Fixtures: V Brazil (June 15, Johannesburg - JEP), V Portugal (June 21, Cape Town), V Cote d’Ivoire (June 25, Nelspruit) Road to South Africa: 2nd in AFC Group B Portugal Results: United Arab Emirates 1-2 Korea DPR • Korea DPR 1-1 Korea Republic • Iran 2-1 Korea DPR • Korea DPR 1-0 Saudi Arabia • Korea DPR 2-0 United Arab Emirates • Korea Republic 1-0 Korea DPR • Korea DPR 0-0 Iran • Saudi Arabia 0-0 Korea DPR Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 8 3 3 2 7 5 +2 12 Coach: Kim Jong-Hun FIFA World Ranking: 106th World Cup Appearances: 1 (1966) Best Results: Quarter Finals, 1966

Group 2010 World Cup South Africa earns full marks. Besides wins in each of their ten games, the team emerged the European

Paraguay

Zone’s second top scorers, with 28 goals. Based on these performances, Spain is widely regarded as the favourite to win from the European zone and ended 2009 with

Japan

New Zealand

a No. 1 FIFA world ranking. But Spain has yet to put on a winning performance at any World Cup competition, despite appearances on 12 previous occasions.

Cameroon

Slovakia

The current team’s success is undoubtedly based on quality and

Korea DPR Brazil Paraguay

balance, led by their captain, Iker Casillas, one of Spain’s finest keepers

New Zealand

Defying all the odds Slovakia

“We’re not favourites, but among the hopefuls…” On a scale of one-to-ten, Spain’s performance in qualifying for

Italy

In spite of the daunting presence of Brazil in their group, the Ivorians have the talent and the experience to get through to the second round in South Africa and almost certainly a better showing than at Germany 2006.

Italy

Spain

Group C

Group Group H B

Ghana

Vicente del Bosque Spain coach

Spain

Team

Ghana

Slovenia

The Chelsea strikersAustralia Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou give the side some formidable fire power up front. But with Sevilla’s Didier Zokora Denmark and Barcelona’s Yaya Toure playing midfield and the rock-steady Serbia European-based trio of Emmanuel Eboue, Kolo Toure and Arthur Boka in defence, the team is packed with top-notch talent from front to back.

home

Korea DPR has a long-standing reputation as Asia’s surprise package, Korea DPR going all the way back to the 1966 World Cup in England, where they appeared on the scene - as if from nowhere - and proceeded to storm their way right through to the final eight. Now they have done it again Spain by defying considerable odds to take one of the Asian Zone’s four Côte d'Ivoire automatic spots at 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.

Group H

Group G

Korea DPR Team

32

The Stats

Brazil

Serbia

for granted.

The West African team qualified for the 2010 World Cup in relaxed Greece style, without losing a match in their group against Burkina Faso, Malawi Chile and Guinea. Big-name Chelsea striker Didier Drogba came through as the top scorer with six goals in five matches, securing The Elephants a place in South Africa with a dramatic equalizer after coming on as a Germany Netherlands substitute in the 70th minute of a tense match against Malawi.

Japan Cameroon

anything and we can’t take any of our opponents

Switzerland

A grueling qualifying campaign over 20 months involved 16 of the Asian Zone’s toughest games, which saw them finish second in their group Portugal Honduras to qualify for the final round. Following mixed fortunes in the final round, they bravely held Saudi Arabia to a goalless draw in the closing game, sealing their passage to the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Chile

Coach Kim Jong-Hun has guided the North Korean squad back to the pinnacle of world football and although his side lacks international experience, he fully expects them to do well. International experience comes from 27-year-old striker, Hong Yong-Jo (Rostov) and Japanbased Jong Tae Se, a renowned rear guard breacher, while homebased midfielder Mun In-Guk makes the team tick and keeper Ri Myong-Guk provides both experience and safe hands. Although Korea DPR qualifying for South Africa was a big shock to many, opinion, based on past experience, cautions that this team is well capable of stunning the football world, yet again, with an even more shocking result.

away

Spain

and backed by midfield string-puller Xavi Hernandez’s laser-sharp passes and vision – vital to the Spaniards’ fluid

Switzerland

style. At the sharp end, there can be few, if any, better finishers than David Villa and Fernando Torres.

Honduras home

away

The Stats Chile Fixtures: V Switzerland (June 16, Durban), V Honduras (June 21, Johannesburg - JEP), V Chile (June 25, Tshwane/Pretoria) Road to South Africa: 1st in UEFA Group 5 Results: Spain 1-0 Bosnia and Herzegovina • Spain 4-0 Armenia • Estonia 0-3 Spain • Belgium 1-2 Spain • Spain 1-0 Turkey • Turkey 1-2 Spain • Spain 5-0 Belgium • Spain 3-0 Estonia • Armenia 1-2 Spain • Bosnia and Herzegovina 2-5 Spain Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 10 0 0 28 5 +23 30 Coach: Vicente del Bosque FIFA World Ranking: 2nd World Cup Appearances: 12 (1934, 1950, 1962, 1966, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006) Best Results: Fourth, 1950

Coach Vincente del Bosque took over the squad following Spain’s EURO 2008 triumph. His one-touch style characterizes Spain’s playing format that relies on midfielders of the highest quality. He formerly coached Real Madrid to two UEFA Champions League titles and remains

orres

Fixtures: V Portugal (June 15, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth), V Brazil (June 20, Johannesburg - JSC), V North Korea (June 25, Nelspruit) England Road to South Africa: 1st in CAF Group E Results: Cote d’Ivoire 5-0 Malawi • Guinea 1-2 Cote d’Ivoire • Burkina Faso 2-3 Cote d’Ivoire • Cote d’Ivoire 5-0 Burkina Faso • Malawi 1-1 Cote USA d’Ivoire • Cote d’Ivoire 3-0 Guinea Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 6 5 1 0 19 4 +15 16 Coach: Vahid Halihodzic Algeria FIFA World Ranking: 27th World Cup Appearances: 1 (2006) Best Results: Round 1, 2006

on the pitch. Our past record doesn’t mean

ndo T

Portugal

We knew that people would make us group Australia

favourites but we have to go out and prove it

Ferna

The Stats

Group F

France

Honduras

Germany

Group H

Côte d'Ivoire

Group G

Uruguay

away

The Elephants, along with Ghana in Group D, are among Africa’s USA greatest hopes for a Argentina strong performance in the 2010 World Cup. Cote d’Ivoire or the Ivory Coast have just one previous World Cup appearance Spain in 2006 in Germany when they crashed out of the group stage after Nigeria losing to Argentina and the Netherlands Algeria in the so-called ‘Group of Death’. Four years on, with some of the world’s top attacking players, Switzerland many expect a better performance from the Cote d’Ivoire team with a Korea Republic good chance of getting through to at least the quarter finals.

Group D

Korea DPR

Paraguay

England Tuskers ready to rumble Slovakia home

Group F

Group Group G A

Mexico

Group C

Côte d'Ivoire Team

Brazil

H

Greece

New Zealand

Cameroon South Africa

France

Group D

Japan

Italy

Group E

Denmark

Group

Group

Group

G

Netherlands

characteristically optimistic regarding Spain’s performance in South Africa. “We’re not favourites,” he says, “but among the hopefuls.”

33


Switzerland

the Swiss with a draw at Israel and then an embarrassing home

Honduras

loss to miniscule Luxembourg. After this stinging slap in the

Côte d'Ivoire

Team

face, the Swiss got their game together and came through with five convincing wins to end up at the top of European Group 2 and a ticket to South Africa.

home

The Swiss squad has sufficient top European league players to produce some good results in South Africa. Of these, Alexander Frei is the undisputed top striker, holding the country’s all-time goalscoring record. He will be joined by the highly improved Congo-born Blaise N’Kufo, who put away an impressive five goals in the qualifying campaign. In South Africa, the

away

The Stats Fixtures: V Spain (June 16, Durban), V Chile (June 21, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth), V Honduras (June 25, Mangaung/Bloemfontein) Road to South Africa: 1st in UEFA Group 2 Results: Israel 2-2 Switzerland • Switzerland 1-2 Luxembourg • Switzerland 2-1 Latvia • Greece 1-2 Switzerland • Moldova 0-2 Switzerland • Switzerland 2-0 Moldova • Switzerland 2-0 Greece • Latvia 2-2 Switzerland • Luxembourg 0-3 Switzerland • Switzerland 0-0 Israel Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 6 3 1 18 8 +10 21 Coach: Ottmar Hitzfeld FIFA World Ranking: 26th World Cup Appearances: 8 (1934, 1938, 1950, 1954, 1962, 1966, 1994, 2006) Best Results: Quarter Finals, 1934, 1938, 1954

red and whites stand

round of 16 if they can pull off good results against Chile and Honduras. Swiss fans will be hoping the team can live up

There’s no doubt that Spain are the group

favourites. They’re the best team in Europe and in the world, and we might as well admit that the other three of us will be fighting for second place. We all have a chance of going through – it will

Ale

xa n

de

rF rei

just be a question of being ready and analysing

34

Attack-minded team

Slovakia

Brazil

Spain

Korea DPR home

every little detail so that there’s less chance of us making mistakes when we get started. Ottmar Hitzfeld Switzerland coach

Group

Group BGroup

New Zealand

Cameroon

away

Chile’s recent soccer renaissance has been capped by a return to the Côte d'Ivoire 2010 FIFA World Cup following a 12-year absence. This will be the team’s eighth appearance on football’s greatest stage. Coached by the experienced Argentinean Marcelo Bielsa, his youthful team finished second in great style behind Brazil with a spectacular 4-2 win over Columbia, and rubber-stamped their return to the world elite.

of getting though to the

and get through to the quarters at least.

Chile

Chile Serbia

Fixtures: V Chile (June 16, Nelspruit), V Spain (June 21, Johannesburg - JEP), V Switzerland (June 25, Mangaung/Bloemfontein) Road to South Africa: 3rd in CONCACAF Group Ghana Results: Costa Rica 2-0 Honduras • Trinidad and Tobago 1-1 Honduras • Honduras 3-1 Mexico • USA 2-1 Honduras • Honduras 1-0 El Salvador • Honduras 4-0 Costa Rica • Honduras 4-1 Trinidad and Tobago • Mexico 1-0 Honduras • Honduras 2-3 USA • El Salvador 0-1 Honduras Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 10 5 1 4 Italy 17 11 +6 16 Coach: Reinaldo Rueda FIFA World Ranking: 40th World Cup Appearances: 1 (1982) Paraguay Best Results: First Round, 1982

Chile’s star performers in this attack-minded team, include the scheming Matias Fernandez and the explosively talented Alexis Sanchez, both representing the new breed of Chilean footballer, determined to build credible reputations abroad, while the more experienced top marksman Humberto Suazo, complements the talented duo by defining himself as a consistent lethal finisher. Expectations for this multi-talented team have risen further by being the second-highest scorers in their group with 32 goals. Coach Bielsa reiterates the most important factor is to ensure all players are in top form and he hopes that this time, everything will come together for Chile.

Switzerland Honduras Chile

Portugal

a very good chance

to the performances of their predecessors

Netherlands

The group match against seemingly unbeatable Spain will be a daunting proposition for the Honduran squad, which has preciousDenmark little experience in top-level international competition. If the players can keep their heads under pressure, then on paper Honduras have a very good chance of Japan advancing to the round of 16.

Chile

Portugal

The Honduran defensive line did a good job of keeping the ball out of Slovenia the net during the qualification stages, conceding fewer goals than any other side. This, combined with strong attacking skills up front courtesy of goal-getter Carlos Pavon and speedy striker David Suazo, should stand Los Catrachos in good stead in South Africa.

Honduras Australia

Honduras

Korea DPR

Qualification for the 2010 FIFA World Cup started off badly for

The Stats

Switzerland Germany

The Stats Fixtures: V Honduras (June 16, Nelspruit), V Switzerland (June 21, Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth), V Spain (June 25, Tshwane/ Pretoria) Road to South Africa: 2nd in CONMEBOL Group Results: Argentina 2-0 Chile • Chile 2-0 Peru • Uruguay 2-2 Chile • Chile 0-3 Paraguay • Bolivia 0-2 Chile • Venezuela 2-3 Chile • Chile 0-3 Brazil • Chile 4-0 Colombia • Ecuador 1-0 Chile • Chile 1-0 Argentina • Peru 1-3 Chile • Chile 0-0 Uruguay • Paraguay 0-2 Chile • Chile 4-0 Bolivia • Chile 2-2 Venezuela • Brazil 4-2 Chile • Colombia 2-4 Chile • Chile 1-0 Ecuador Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 18 10 3 5 32 22 +10 33 Coach: Marcelo Bielsa FIFA World Ranking: 15th World Cup Appearances: 7 (1930, 1950, 1962, 1966, 1974, 1982, 1998) Best Results: Third, 1962

Chile

sides in South Africa?

Spain

Greece Spain

Team

impressive track record against the increasingly competitive

France South Africa 2010 will be the second excursion to the World Cup for Brazil Honduras, after bowing out at the group stage in Spain in 1982. This time around they will be hoping to get through to the round of 16, although their starting campaign against Spain, Chile and Switzerland Korea DPR isn’t likely to be easy. England

Group E

more impressive. Will the Swiss squad be able to keep up this Brazil

Group H

Cup appearances and three quarter finals finishes is all the

away

Honduras scraped through to South Africa after finishing third in the Côte d'Ivoire CONCACAF table below the USA and Mexico. WithUSA mixed fortunes during the qualification matches, Honduras’ chances depended on the result of the final USA-Costa Rica match, which didn’tPortugal go well for their Algeria Central American rivals.

For a small country, Switzerland’s total of eight previous World

New Zealand Nigeria

Team

Slovakia

home

Paraguay Argentina

Slovakia Korea Republic

Group DGroup H

Cameroon

All set to scale the heights

Don’t underestimate La Bicolor

Cameroon Uruguay

H

Italy

Group F

New Zealand

Japan Mexico

Group CGroup G

Japan

Honduras

Denmark South Africa

Group H

Paraguay

Group G

Denmark

Group AGroup

Italy

Group F

Group E

Netherlands

Switzerland Group G

Switzerland

Group

H

Netherlands

35


Ten players to “keep an eye on”!

Having just completed a successful first season with Real Madrid as the world’s

One of world football’s most feared strikers, Fernando Torres forms a deadly

most expensive player and making his second World Cup appearance, Portugal

partnership with team-mate David Villa and scored three goals at 2006 World

Captain Cristiano Ronaldo, eminently versatile on either wing, with renowned

Cup Germany, plus the winner against Germany in the Euro 2008 Final. Torres

midfield playmaker abilities and an opportune talent for executing a dangerous

Fernando Torres

Team: Portugal

the most exciting and talented players to grace the South African tournament.

Team: Spain

deadly, as well as impressive in the air, while keeping cool and calculating in

Position: Midfield

The star player considers his team’s Group as difficult, with Brazil being

Position: Striker

front of the goal, with an eye for the spectacular, if presented. He is surely

Age: 25

strongest, followed by the Ivory Coast and feels his team must therefore be at

Age: 25

destined to be one of the stars of the tournament and Spain’s key to success,

Current Club: Real Madrid

their best to get through.

Current Club: Liverpool

season. Considered a natural goal scorer, being quick, strong, clinical and

provided he keeps fit.

Considered “the new Maradona” by the media, Lionel Messi is fast acquiring

Park Ji-Sung played a high profile role in Republic of Korea’s two previous

a title as an exciting striker, displaying impressive technical skills, while

FIFA World Cup campaigns, eventually graduating as Captain of his country’s team. A dedicated and talented winger for Manchester United, he is regarded

possessing outstanding attacking abilities. The Champion’s League clash against Arsenal in April, witnessed his mercurial talent for weaving and dodging through myriad defenders to strike with devastating effect four times, leaving Arsenal silent in tatters 4-1 down in their home stadium. A possible key to his incredible talent is his effervescent display of art, magic, desire, emotion, fun and ferocity each time he plays.

Lionel Messi Team: Argentina Position: Forward Age: 19 Current Club: FC Barcelona

Didier Drogba Team: Ivory Coast Position: Striker Age: 32 Current Club: Chelsea

as the rock of the current national team, where his unique ability as a playmaker, creating space and chances for his team-mates, has proved to be a key instrument in qualifying for this tournament. This natural talent will be crucially important in probably his last World Cup tournament, where he is confident his team can reach the latter stages of the competition.

Position: Midfield Age: 29

Keisuke Honda is one of Japan’s younger talented midfield players, especially

accuracy and set-piece execution, with an uncanny knack for scoring against

skilled in taking free-kicks, with considerable international experience playing

all the odds. Playing for Chelsea in the English Premier League, he is also

for the Netherlands’ Eredivisie side, VVV-Venlo, before transferring to Russian

Captain and all-time top scorer of the Ivory Coast national football team, while scoring his 100th goal for Chelsea in October 2009. Drogba scored his first goal against Argentina in Ivory Coast’s first World Cup appearance in Germany 2006. In qualifying for South Africa, this talented player is expected to lead his team to even greater success this time around.

Keisuke Honda Team: Japan Position: Midfield Age: 24 Current Club: CSKA Moscow

Premier League powerhouse CSKA Moscow, where he has further developed his strong penchant for scoring goals and creating vital playmaking opportunities. The talented playmaker provided strong support in Japan’s run up to 2010 World Cup qualification and is expected to figure prominently in his team’s aspirations for World Cup glory.

This world class all-round midfielder is considered one of the best defensive

by learning to control his aggressive energy and channel it selectively, while

midfielders in the modern game, well capable of stifling attacks and also creating

”waiting-to-be-fed” type, but a true creator, who is to be seen swerving all over

them. He has been in brilliant form for Chelsea at the heart of the midfield box

Wayne Rooney

and with a keen eye for goal, especially long distance shots, he doesn’t squander

Team: England

opportunities. Michael Essien retains a relentless work-rate and is the definitive

needed, before positioning himself to cannon the ball into the net, a la Bobby

Position: Striker

box-to-box midfielder, possessing the necessary power and drive to create

Charlton! Rooney has enjoyed a spectacular season with Manchester United,

Age: 23

vital space and opportunities for team-mates. His outstanding form at the African

Current Club: Manchester United

Cup of Nations last year suggested that, barring injury, he could make all the

the attacking half of the field, supporting his midfielders, where and when

scoring 34 Premier League goals and is expected to continue this performance

difference to Ghana’s prospects in South Africa once again.

for England in South Africa.

As with so many of his countrymen, Kaka possesses a natural affinity to the

However, since his transfer to Real Madrid with Cristiano Ronaldo in 2009, the

Team: Brazil

talented Brazilian has only managed three goals in 10 matches in la Liga, as

Position: Midfield

he tries to adjust to life after Milan. Nonetheless, he has become a central

Age: 27

figure in manager Dunga’s new Brazil, masterminding lethal counterattacks, which have ensured Brazil is still one of the world’s best.

Position: Midfield Age: 29 Current Club: Chelsea

for no-nonsense defending. The former Spartak Moscow star player is regarded

instrumental in Milan’s success in Europe during the 2006-07 season as the

(Ricardo Izecson dos Santos Leite)

Team: Ghana

Manchester United, Nemanja Vidic has made his mark with a strong reputation

Milan icon has scored 26 times for Brazil in 73 appearances and was club won the Champions League on the back of his incredible performances.

Michael Essien

As a resolute defender and part of a crucial rearguard with Rio Ferdinand for

beautiful game that is exemplified by his performance on the field. The former

Current Club: Real Madrid

Team: Republic of Korea

Current Club: Manchester United

Since his international debut at just 17, Wayne Rooney has steadily improved

Kaka

Park Ji-Sung

This scintillating striker is the envy of every football coach, excelling in pace,

honing his incredible skills to become a truly world class striker, not of the

36

joined Liverpool from Atletico Madrid in 2007 and scored 33 goals in his first

and often deadly finish - many from an impossible angle - mark him as one of

Cristiano Ronaldo

Nemanja Vidic Team: Serbia Position: Centre-Back Age: 29 Current Club: Manchester United

as being one of the best centre-backs in the world and is renowned for being fierce and uncompromising in a tackle, as well as formidable in the air. However, he is not averse to “appearing” at the other end of the pitch and chipping in the odd goal whenever the opportunity occurs. Expect to see him performing both functions in South Africa with his customary enthusiasm, with what Serbia hope will be telling results.

37



FIFA 2010 Final