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Eriksson upbeat over Ivory Coast chances

Posted Sunday, May 30, 2010 by PA

Ivory Coast coach Sven-Goran Eriksson is confident his team have the ability to progress from the World Cup's 'group of death'. Eriksson has been getting to know his players at a training base in Switzerland and has two warm-up friendlies - against Paraguay on Sunday and Japan on Friday - before facing Portugal, Brazil and North Korea in Group G. "We know that we are in a very difficult group,...Full Story »

Pepe on road to recovery

Posted Sunday, May 30, 2010 by PA

Real Madrid defender Pepe is back in training following more than six months on the sidelines and looks set to be ready to play for Portugal at this summer's World Cup. Pepe has been out since December with a serious knee injury which saw him miss the rest of the domestic season with Real, but trained with his team-mates on Saturday. Atletico Madrid midfielder Tiago also returned to training a...Full Story »

Eto'o in World Cup threat

Posted Sunday, May 30, 2010 by PA

Inter Milan striker Samuel Eto'o has threatened to pull out of this summer's World Cup following criticism from Cameroon legend Roger Milla. Eto'o made history last weekend when he completed a league, cup and Champions League treble for the second year in a row, having achieved the feat with Barcelona last season. But Milla claims the forward has "never given anything to Cameroon". "Is it real...Full Story »

North Korea request friendly cancellation

Posted Saturday, May 29, 2010 by PA

North Korea have asked for their World Cup warm-up friendly against Democratic Republic of Congo to be cancelled because they have a lot of injured players. The game was scheduled to be played on Saturday in Tyrol, Austria, in preparation for North Korea's campaign in South Africa. The North Koreans have been drawn in one of the toughest pools for this summer's showpiece event, alongside Brazi...Full Story »

Torres praises matchwinner Gerrard

Posted Saturday, May 29, 2010 by PA

Spain striker Fernando Torres has identified his Liverpool colleague Steven Gerrard as a potential matchwinner for England. Three Lions boss Fabio Capello currently has selection problems in central midfield due to Gareth Barry's ankle injury. Gerrarad could be deployed as a direct replacement for the Manchester City man but Torres believes the Reds captain is at his most dangerous when played ...Full Story »

Del Bosque focused on group clashes

Posted Saturday, May 29, 2010 by PA

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque says his side cannot afford to start thinking about the latter stages of the World Cup and must focus on the first three Group H games against Switzerland, Chile and Honduras. The current European Champions, go into this summer's tournament as one of the big favourites, but Del Bosque hopes his side do not get ahead of themselves. "We all know the final objective...Full Story »

Llorente: I'm different

Posted Saturday, May 29, 2010 by PA

Athletic Bilbao striker Fernando Llorente believes he will be useful to Spain at this summer's World Cup in South Africa because he offers something different to the team's other forwards. Llorente lacks the pace of Fernando Torres and the movement of David Villa, but is a big threat in the air and is likely to be used against more direct, physical opponents in close matches. "I am different s...Full Story »

Pienaar unhappy with friendly role

Posted Saturday, May 29, 2010 by PA

South Africa midfielder Steven Pienaar has questioned the tactics of coach Carlos Alberto Parreira after the World Cup host's 2-1 friendly victory over Colombia. Although the Everton schemer accepted his place on the bench, he was not happy with the central midfield role given to him when he joined the action. "I knew that I wouldn't be starting because I was the last into camp and the coach w...Full Story »

Nakamura could miss England clash

Posted Saturday, May 29, 2010 by PA

Former Celtic midfielder Shunsuke Nakamura is a major doubt for Japan's friendly with England in Austria on Sunday. The 31-year-old, who now plays for Japanese side Yokohama F Marinos, was replaced midway through the second half of the 2-0 home defeat to South Korea on Monday and was struggling with a sore ankle during training on Friday. "Shunsuke needs a bit more time to get back to his best...Full Story »

Saadane warns side after hapless showing

Posted Saturday, May 29, 2010 by PA

Algeria coach Rabah Saadane has warned his players they face World Cup humiliation at the hands of England if they do not improve. The North African side were comprehensively beaten 3-0 by the Republic of Ireland - who will not be in South Africa - at Dublin's RDS on Friday night, just three weeks before they are due to meet Fabio Capello's men in Cape Town. "Ireland are a formidable team - th...Full Story »

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