England Expects World Cup Special

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Read our 20-page World Cup Special with the lowdown on all 32 squads in South Africa.


  • 2 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Could this betheir time?AFTER a disappointingqualifying period,Portugal will probablynot be entering the 2010World Cup with a whole lot ofconfidence.The team which has been

    drawn in one of the mostdifficult groups alongsideBrazil, North Korea and IvoryCoast won just one of theirfirst five qualifying games forthis years tournament.However, in the second half

    of qualifying, Portugal went onto score eight goals andsecured a place in the finalstage of the 2010 contest bybeating Bosnia-Herzegovina.Known as the Seleco, the

    Portuguese side has noshortage of talented players,including captain CristianoRonaldo, the most expensiveplayer in history after a 80mtransfer to Real Madrid. Otherkey players include Brazilian-born striker Lidson, andmidfielders Deco and Simao.But, despite their credentials,the star-studded team hasnever enjoyed significant

    international success.The highest Portugal has

    ever come in the World Cup isfourth, in 2006, when Ronaldofamously winked at thePortuguese bench afterManchester United team-mate,Wayne Rooney, was sent off.The team is certainly capable

    of great things. In 2002, theteam played extremely wellduring World Cup qualifying.This early success fizzled outthough and Portugal wereeliminated at group stage.It is hoped that Mozambican-

    born coach, Carlos Queiroz,who took over when Brazilian,Luiz Felipe Scolari, left tocoach Chelsea in 2008, can leadthe Seleco to success.Queiroz is no stranger to

    success at club-level, havingbriefly coached at Real Madridand been Alex Fergusonssecond in command atManchester United on twooccasions.Portugals first fixture in

    South Africa is on June 15when they face Ivory Coast.They will then play NorthKorea on June 21, followed by

    Brazil on June 25.Ahead of them is no easy

    task but, with an abundance ofworld-class players in theranks, maybe this will be theyear Portugals internationalambitions are fulfilled.

    AT HOMECapital: LisbonLanguage: MainlyPortuguese, although theregional language ofMirandese is alsorecognised

    Population: Approximately10.7 million

    Currency: EuroKnown for: The Algarve, Portwine, peri-peri sauce andsardines and attractions likeBlem Tower in Lisbon aWorld Heritage site

    Best time to visit: July, whenaverage temperatures in theAlgarve soar

    InspirationalleadershipPARAGUAY have enteredthis World Cup with theaims of progressingthrough the early stages aftersecuring their place with twogames to spare.The team has featured in

    seven previous tournamentsand this 2010 event will betheir fourth consecutiveappearance.Manchester City forward

    Roque Santa Cruz andSunderland defender Paulo daSilva have been named inParaguay's preliminary squadand, despite not taking to thepitch in much of the qualifyingstages, its no doubt SantaCruz is important toParaguays impressive form.Leading the team through

    the competition is ArgentinianGerardo Martino, aninspirational choice as theteam made their best-everqualification performance forthe 2010 World Cup. Martino,also referred to as El Tata, wasa talented attacking midfielderduring the 1990s, and then

    moved into coaching in 1998.During the qualifiers,

    Paraguay recorded 10 wins andcollected 33 points. The teamdefeated Argentina 1-0 andPresident Fernando Lugo thendeclared a national holiday toallow the nation to celebratethe achievement.Paraguay's top scorer in the

    qualifiers, Salvador Cabanas,is ruled out due to an incidentwhich caused a head injury.The squad also includesBorussia Dortmund strikerand freshly nationalisedArgentine Lucas Barrios.Barrios, whose mother isParaguayan, has enjoyed a fineseason with Dortmund, as hasclubmate Nelson HaedoValdez, who also made thesquad along with fellow strikerOscar Cardozo of Benfica.Oscar Cardozo, Nelson Haedo

    Valdez and Santa Cruz were allpart of the Paraguay team atGermany 2006 World Cup andthe disheartening group-phase,so they should be ready tomake amends and get somegoals during the South African

    tournament.On June 14, Paraguay will be

    facing Italy in Cape Town,then on June 20 they will be upagainst Slovakia and then onJune 24 the team will tackleNew Zealand.

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  • 3Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Madrid reign supreme twicein the La Liga championshipAs well as a revitalised

    squad and the capablecoaching style of Capello, thefact that the competition isbeing held during SouthAfricas winter should go inEnglands favour, as the milderconditions will, in theory, suitthe England players.Drawing a line under

    Englands failure to qualify forthe UEFA Euro championshipsin 2008, the team havequalified pretty convincinglyfor this years World Cup,scoring an impressive 34 goalsalong the way.The teams leading lights will

    be keen to prove their worthfor their national team. WithDavid Beckham out of thecompetition, the pressure is onthe remaining players to pullout all the stops.In midfield, Frank Lampard

    and Steven Gerrard will bothbe trying their best to score asmany goals as possible andWayne Rooney will certainlybe looking to perform well forhis country.

    Capello and the boysare on the glory trailAS ever, expectationsfor England will beextremely high, andthe appointment of FabioCapello in 2008 has given theteam the shot in the arm itneeded, following variousdisappointments, not leastcrashing out of thecompetition in 2006.Having appeared in 11

    previous World Cups, Englandis no stranger to thecompetition but it is winningthat all-important final whichmatters so much to the playersand the fans who are keen forthe team to finally bring homethe bacon some 44 years aftertheir last victory.Under Capello, the team won

    all but one of its qualifyinggames for the World Cup, atrack record he and the teamwill be looking to replicate atthe competition itself.Known as a tough coach to

    please, Capello has animpressive track record,having led three Italian teamsto victory in the Serie Acompetition and helping Real

    AT HOMELanguage: EnglishPopulation: Approximately59 million

    Currency: PoundBest time to visit: Summer though there is noguarantee of sunshine inEngland!

    National emblem: The rose,in recognition of the Warsof the Roses in the 15thcentury

    Known for: Fish and chips,the Royal family, TheBeatles, its heritage

    AT HOMELanguage: JapaneseCurrency: YenPopulation: Approximately127 million

    Capital: TokyoKnown for: Sushi, geishas,Mount Fuji, origami andsumo wrestling

    Did you know? Japan hasthe highest lifeexpectancy of any countryin the world

    REGARDED as one ofthe best Asian teams,Japan has won theprestigious Asian Cup onthree occasions in 1992,2000 and 2004.However, when it comes to

    World Cup tournaments, theteam which is often referredto as the Samurai Bluesbecause of their distinctiveblue kit, or Okada Japan inhonour of the current coach has had mixed fortunes.The Samurai Blues have

    qualified for the past fourWorld Cups consecutively which is no easy feat.Yet their success at

    international-level is limited:during their first-ever WorldCup in 1998, Japan lost allthree of their matches.In 2002 when they co-hosted

    the tournament with SouthKorea, the team were knockedout of the competition byTurkey in the 16th round. Andduring the last World Cup, inGermany in 2006, the Japaneseside was once again knockedout of footballs greatest

    contest, after they failed towin any matches duringgroup play.During the fourth round of

    the Asian qualifiers for SouthAfrica, Japan became the firstteam other than South Africa to qualify for the World Cupby beating Uzbekistan 1-0.Interestingly, current coach

    Takeshi Okada managed theJapanese national team duringtheir first-ever World Cupappearance in 1998. The 53-year-old former defender, whoplayed 24 games for Japanbetween 1980 and 1985,returned to the role of coach inDecember 2007.The teams captain is Yuji

    Nakazawa, Japans third mostcapped player of all time.Nakazawa, a member of theteam in 2000 when Japan wonthe Asian Cup, announced hisretirement from internationalfootball after the 2006 WorldCup six months later, though,he withdrew his decision andreturned to the game.Other key players in the

    current squad include

    midfielder ShunsukeNakamura, who plays for LaLiga; midfielder KeisukeHonda, and 24-year-old strikerShinji Okazaki.Japans first World Cup

    match is on June 14, whenthey will play Cameroon

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  • 4 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    AT HOMELanguage: KoreanComprises: 14 separateadministrative divisions

    Population: Approximately24 million

    Motto: Powerful andprosperous nation

    Currency: North Koreanwon

    Time difference from UK: +9hours

    Best time to visit: Springand autumn

    National emblem: Coat ofarms showing sacredmountain, where leaderKim Jong II was born, andfive-pointed red starsymbolising the countrysrevolutionary spirit.

    JUST as the 1966 WorldCup has special meaningfor England, it is alsosignificant for a much lesserknown team North Korea.This was the year that the

    squad made it through to thefinal eight, an achievementthey will be hoping to equal, ifnot better, at this yearscompetition.And if their performance to

    get to the final qualifyinground is anything to go by,then they are definitely ones towatch.Against all odds, thanks to

    some amazing football, NorthKorea deservedly managed toseize one of four covetedautomatic qualification placesfor this years World Cup.The squad narrowly missed

    out on qualifying for the 2006World Cup in Germany, some-thing they were determinednot to repeat this time round,so after more than 30 years inthe football wilderness NorthKorea are back and a force tobe reckoned with.

    So what is the key to thesquads success? Despite mostof the team coming from home-grown clubs, there are a fewvital players who have earnedtheir stripes on theinternational scene. Theseinclude Jong Tae-Se who playsin Japan and Hong Yong-Jowho is currently signed for FCRostov. Other key players aremidfielder Mun In-Guk, who isseen by many as holding thewhole team together, and theextremely able and reliablegoal keeper, Ri Myong-Guk.Guiding the whole team with

    a suitably pragmatic approachis coach Kim Jong-Hun.Rather than trying to meet

    the big boys head on andpotentially risk early defeat,he has decided to acknowledgethe teams lack of inter-national experience and takeon a, so far, highly effectivedefensive style of play.Kim Jong-Hun is remarkably

    upbeat about his teamschances and is obviouslyrelishing the challenge ahead

    Back from thewilderness

    THE first African countryto qualify for the WorldCup 2010 in SouthAfrica, the Ghana nationalfootball team could well bethe cream of the continent.Nicknamed the Black Stars,

    the country played as the GoldCoast before gainingindependence from the UK in1957.Ghana qualified to play in

    the senior FIFA World Cup forthe first time 2006 and will bemaking its second appearancethis year after winning 2-0against Sudan in Accra in thequalifiers.But although this may give

    the impression Ghana haslittle international experience,the Black Stars have enjoyedhuge success in this field,winning four CAF African Cupof Nations titles, two FIFA U-17World Cups, and they were thefirst African team to lift theFIFA U-20 World Cup in 2009.They also qualified for five

    straight Olympic GamesFootball Tournaments when

    the tournament was still a fullsenior national teamcompetition.Since the 2006 World Cup

    Ghana have gained inexperience and look set to be amajor contender this year.Leading the team is Serbian

    coach Milovan Rajevac, aformer defender who playedfor Yugoslavia, and one of hispriorities has been to create astrong defence for Ghana. Hehas also instilled a sense ofteamwork and solidarity.This, combined with their

    mix of youth and experienceand mental strength, shouldstand them in good stead, andthe team have been identifiedas dangerous outsiders.The team boasts some top

    class players includingmidfielder Michael Essien,who plays for Chelsea and isone of the most excitingplayers in South Africa, aswell as Inter Milan's SulleyMuntari, formerly ofPortsmouth, and Eric Addo,making his second World Cupappearance.

    AT HOMELanguage: Ghana has 47ethnic languages, butEnglish is the country'sofficial language

    Population: Around 24million

    Area: 238,537kmCurrency: CediBest time to visit:December to April, if youwant to miss the rainyseason!

    National emblem: TheGhana Coat of Arms, withtwo eagles carrying ashield

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  • 5Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Can champsdo it again?

    AT HOMELanguage: PortugueseCurrency: Real/ReaisPopulation: Around 185mBest time to visit: Summeroccurs from December toMarch. Travel in theAmazon is best January toJune

    Capital city: BrasiliaKnown for: AmazoniaNational Park; IguassuFalls or Iguau Falls

    National emblem: Roundshield with stars,surrounding star pluscoffee and tobaccobranches

    WITH football beingthe most prominentsport in the country,its no wonder Brazil has wonthe World Cup five times!So its no surprise this

    talented team is once againone of the favourites to win the2010 championship. A Seleoare the most successfulnational football team in thehistory of the World Cup, withfive championship wins in1958, 1962, 1970, 1994 and 2002 plus Brazil is the only team tohave participated in everyWorld Cup.Over the years this success

    has led a number of the teamsplayers to achieve celebritystatus internationally, with thelikes of Pele, who led Brazil tothree of the championships.Carlos Verri, better known as

    Dunga, took on the job as theteams coach in 2006. OnceBrazils powerful midfielder,Dunga lifted the trophy in 1994after taking over the captainsarmband.Although its only his first

    coaching role Dunga has put a

    stop to any doubting hiscapabilities by leading ACanarinha to triumph in the2007 Copa America, the FIFAConfederations Cup 2009 andnow qualifying Brazil for theWorld Cup.In the qualifying stages

    Brazil managed nine wins,seven draws and two defeats,meaning they ended at the topof the group. The fans pushedtheir national team aftergoalless home draws againstArgentina, Bolivia andColombia, yet they went on toclock-up five wins in a rowwhich secured their place inthe competition.Left out of this World Cup

    initial squad is two-time worldplayer of the year Ronaldinho,who last played for Brazil in2009.Tottenham goalkeeper

    Heurelho Gomes is the onlyplayer in the squad currentlyplaying in England. Otherplayers include formerArsenal midfielders GilbertoSilva and Julio Baptista,former Manchester United

    player Kleberson, andManchester City strikerRobinho, who has been playingfor Santos after joining themon a six-month loan deal.

    Hoping tostage a coupIT might have been overtwo decades since theirlast World Cupappearance but Hondurasaren't going to let that stopthem from making their markin South Africa 2010!A triumphant return for the

    hopeful team, Honduras israpidly emerging as a strongfootballing nation and, with adynamic coach, it's now hopedthat the national side canexcel.Making their last World Cup

    appearance in Spain 1982 itwould be easy to under-estimate the team. Yet theHondurans have, in fact,notched up many accolades.Amongst these are being the

    first Central American footballteam to score two goals at aWorld Cup tournament, as wellas winning the 1981CONCACAF Championshipand UNCAF Nations Cup in1993 and 1995.They also performed well in

    their World Cup qualifyinground, finishing above Mexico,

    Canada and Jamaica with just11 goals conceded the best intheir section. However, itwasn't all plain sailing and, intypically dramatic fashion,Honduras had to rely on theUSA's exciting equaliseragainst Costa Rica to qualify.This doesn't mean that the

    team don't harbour seriousaspirations for South Africa and with an impressive line-up, the Honduran side look ingood shape. Top playersinclude David Suazo, AmadoGuevara, Julio Csar de Leon,Wilson Palacios and CarlosPavon. Wigan Atheletic'sHendry Thomas is anotheremerging star.Coach Reinaldo Rueda has

    also become an integral andmuch loved part of theHonduran side. Andconsidering that the teammanaged all this following amilitary coup in Honduras lastJune it makes the achievementeven more impressive.Tough matches against

    Spain, Chile and Switzerlandawait in Group H, but with

    their new reputation on theline and national pride all toplay for, there's no discountingHonduras until the finalwhistle has been blown.

    AT HOMEOfficial language: SpanishPopulation: Approx 7.8million

    Currency: HonduranLempira (HNL)

    Climate: Dry season November to April. Wetseason May to October.The coastal regions arevery hot, with cooler, moretemperate weather in themountains

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  • 6 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010


    Socceroosbounce backAUSTRALIA will belooking to make up forlost time at this yearsFIFA World Cup.Having been absent from the

    competition for some 32 years,the team reached the knockoutstage in the 2006 World Cupand, thanks to the shrewdtactics of coach Dutchman,Pim Verbeek, Australia arebeing tipped as ones to watchin this years competition.Known as the Socceroos, the

    team switched membershipfrom the Oceania group intothe Asian group which wasseen by many as a tactical ployto ease its qualification intothis years competition. Therecan be little doubt that thetactic paid off with the teammanaging not to concede agoal in all of the last eightmatches it played in, takingthe team five points clear ofJapan.So what is the key to

    Australias success? Acombination of clevercoaching and some excellent

    players seems to be paying offfor the team. Coach PimVerbeek may be not that wellknown on the internationalstage but he is well respectedby the players and has awealth of experience.The team itself is considered

    rock solid and a lot is expectedof some of its key players.Tim Cahill is arguably the

    most high profile of the teamsplayers with an impeccabletrack record playing forEverton. His position asattacking midfielder meansthat he has notched up animpressive goal record for thenational team.Harry Kewell, who plays on

    the left, is also one to watch, asis his opposite Brett Emerton,and, in the centre, VinceGrella and Jason Culina arealso highly respected withinthe game.The team is particularly

    recognised for its defensiveabilities with central defenderLucas Neill and goalkeeperMark Schwarzer a force to be

    Language: Mainly EnglishPopulation: approximately22 million

    National anthem: AdvanceAustralia Fair

    Currency: Australian dollarBest time to visit: Countryhas winter when UK hassummer, and vice versa

    National emblem: Goldenwattle flower

    Known for: Koalas,kangaroos, Neighbours,beer, barbecues and theOutback

    reckoned with.The squad is supplemented

    by players who play incountries as diverse as Russia,China, Italy, Turkey, Hollandand Germany

    Striking fearinto rivalsEVEN with a disastrousstart to their World Cupcampaign, there's nodoubting the threat posed byArgentina.Long famed for being one of

    the world's top national teams,Argentina suffered a gruellinground to reach the groupstages of the World Cup 2010.Thankfully, the side

    nicknamed La Albiceleste (thelight blue and whites) pulledout all the stops to beat Peruand Uruguay in trueArgentine style and, at the lastminute, managed to securetheir place in the competition.The two-time world

    champions will also be buoyedby the recent appointment offootballing God DiegoMaradona as coach.Voted the FIFA Player of the

    20th Century alongside Pel,the straight-talking Argentinewas, of course, La Albiceleste'sstar player in his day andbecame an idol after leadingthe team to victory in the 1986World Cup.And, with some of the

    world's finest footballers onthe team, there's no under-estimating the damage thatArgentina could do if flying ontop form.Star player and Barcelona

    forward Lionel Messi isregarded as one of the bestfootballers in the world. And,joined by the likes of captainJavier Mascherano, CarlosTevez and Juan SebastinVern, it's not surprisingArgentina still strike fear intomost of their competitors.La Albiceleste's previous

    record in footballingtournaments also shows howdangerous they can be. In 1978and 1986 Argentina twice wonthe World Cup, closelyfollowed by narrowly missinganother World Cup title(losing to Germany in a much-disputed penalty shoot out) in1990. They are also one of onlytwo teams in the world to havewon the three most importanttitles recognised by FIFA The World Cup; theConfederations Cup and theOlympic tournament. Plus theteam have been extremely

    successful in its continentalchampionship, the CopaAmerica, winning 14 times.So, with bag loads of star

    quality and a stroke of luckmaybe 2010 could beArgentina and Maradona'stime to shine.

    AT HOMELanguage: SpanishPopulation: Approx 40million

    Time difference (from UK):BST -4

    Best time to visit: Warmest December, January,February and March.Coldest June, July,August

    National emblem: The Coatof Arms and The Sun ofMay

    Known for: The Argentinetango, football, wine andcorned beef



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  • 7Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Hot favourites withthe tipstersTHEYVE never won theWorld Cup in fact thehighest theyve evercome in the hotly contestedtournament is fourth in1950. Yet expectations arehigh for current Europeanchampions, Spain, who,alongside the famousfootballing nation of Brazil,are tipped as favourites inthis years World Cup.Known for its speedy style,

    the Spanish team has enjoyedmuch success in recent years most notably in UEFAs Euro2008 tournament, whenlegendary Liverpool strikerFernando Torres led theSpaniards to a 1-0 victoryagainst Germany with a goalin the 33rd minute.As well as clinching the title

    for Spain, Torres winningshot gave Spain a total of 12goals in the tournament making it the top scoring teamin Euro 2008.Since then, the team, which

    is referred to as La Furia Roja(The Red Fury) or La Roja (The

    Red One) by fans, hasbeen virtuallyunstoppable. BetweenNovember 2006 andJune 2009, the teamwent undefeated for 35consecutive games arecord the Spanishsquad shares withfellow-favourites, Brazil.Whats more, the talented

    team won all 10 of theirqualifying games for the 2010World Cup. Spain has alsobeen placed second from top inthe Fifa rankings.With manager, Vicente del

    Bosque at the helm, havingtaken over from Luis Aragonesin 2008, captain Iker Casillaswill lead La Roja into theirfirst South African fixture onJune 16 against Switzerland.With expectations high, all

    eyes will be on star player,Torres, who may miss the startof the World Cup, as heunderwent knee surgery inApril. Torres isnt the only bigname though as other keyplayers include Arsenalmidfielder, Cesc Fabregas;Barcelona midfielder, Xavi

    AT HOMELanguage: Mainly SpanishCatalan; Aranese andGalician are also recognised

    Population: Approximately45.9 million

    Capital city: MadridCurrency: EuroKnown for: Sangria, tapas,architect Antonio Gaudismagical buildings inBarcelona, Seville orangesand flamenco dancing

    Hernandez, and striker, DavidVilla, who currently plays forValencia and is the second topscorer of all time in Spain.

    All Whitesare alright

    AT HOMELanguage: English and MaoriPopulation: 4.3 millionCapital: WellingtonCurrency: New Zealand dollarNational emblem: KiwiKnown for: Agriculture, wineindustry, the Haka, TheFlight of the Conchords, TheLord of the Rings movies

    THERES more to sport inNew Zealand than justrugby. The All Blacks,the countrys rugby unionteam, may be one of the mostrespected and successful inthe world, but theres a newforce emerging in NewZealand sport.Nicknamed the All Whites

    due to their brilliant whitehome strip, the island nationoff Australias east coast havebeen getting a real dose ofWorld Cup fever thanks totheir side progressing to thisyears finals alongsideneighbours Australia.New Zealand have graced one

    World Cup before, in 1982,when they travelled to Spainand lost three tough matchesagainst Brazil, Soviet Unionand Scotland.The All Whites appeared in

    the Confederations Cup threetimes, representing Oceania,but have fared little better,losing nine games and drawingone. However, there is reasonto be optimistic that the teamwill perform better in South

    Africa. They topped theirOceania qualification groupafter winning their first fivegames and setting up a two-legged showdown withBahrain to see who wouldprogress to the World Cup.Bahrain had beaten the

    talented Saudi Arabians, soNew Zealand were extremelypleased to come away fromtheir away leg with a 0-0result. All they had to do thenwas get any sort of a win onhome soil to advance to SouthAfrica. This they managedthanks to a 45th minute headerfrom Rory Fallon and a vitalpenalty save from theirgoalkeeper Mark Paston in thesecond half.New Zealand kick off their

    World Cup campaign on June15 in Rustenburg, where theywill face Slovakia.The All Whites are currently

    ranked 78th in the world, and astrong opening againstSlovakia will give belief to theNew Zealanders ahead of avery tough match againstdefending World ChampionsItaly and then a final group

    game with Paraguay.Main man in the New

    Zealand team is the captain,central defender Ryan Nelsen.Nelsen plies his trade in thePremier League withBlackburn Rovers and is thehighest profile player.Other talent to look out for

    includes forward Shane Smeltzwho is the Australian A-Leagues top scorer and theOceania Player of the Year.

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    01704 880200www.scarisbrickhallschool.co.ukenquiries@scarisbrickhallschool.co.uk

    GoodSportsScarisbrickHall School is delighted toshowour support for the England teamin SouthAfrica - good luck boys!

    Wed also like to invite you and yourchildren to come along to one of oursummer clubs . Amongstmany otheractivities, there are plenty of sportingactivities on offer - your childmighteven be the next StevenGerrard!

    ScarisbrickHall Schoolwishes theEngland teamall the best at this years

    FIFAWorld Cupnals

  • 8 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Quality teamare dynamite

    Independentand proud

    AT HOMELanguage: SerbianPopulation: 9.8 millionArea: 77,474 sq kmNational anthem: Lord GiveUs Justice

    Currency: Serbian DinarBest time to visit: July andAugust

    National emblem: The coat-of-arms featuring a crownon top of a double-headedwhite eagle

    Known for: Plums, lilacs,folk dancing, stunningcountryside, spas

    AT HOMELanguage: DanishPopulation: 5.5 millionCapital: CopenhagenCurrency: Danish krone(DKK)

    National emblem: Lion,mute swan

    Known for: Author and poetHans Christian Andersen,pianist Victor Borge,philosopher SrenKierkegaard, The LittleMermaid statue

    THE Danes are a proud,football-loving nation.FIFA founder members,they first graced the WorldCup in 1986. In their threeappearances at the Finals theDanes have reached the last16 twice, and in 1998advanced to the quarter finalstage, where they werebeaten by Brazil.Their greatest footballing

    achievement came in 1992 atthe European Championshipsin Sweden. The Danish teamactually failed to qualify forthe tournament, comingsecond to Yugoslavia in thequalifiers, but due to war inYugoslavia the team wasbarred from the tournamentand Denmark took their placeat the last minute.The team beat the odds by

    ousting defending EuropeanChampions, Netherlands, inthe semis and then thereigning World Champions,Germany, in the final.While they went on to win

    the Confederations Cup in

    1995, since their EuropeanChampionship victory, goodform and results have beenpatchy for the team nicknamedDanish Dynamite, and theymissed out on a place at thelast World Cup.But under coach Morten

    Olsen the Danes look to havebecome a force once more.Indeed, their route to SouthAfrica was particularlyimpressive, winning six oftheir 10 games and topping thegroup ahead of qualityopposition.Their squad is sprinkled

    with quality from some of thebest teams in Europe.Liverpools Daniel Agger,Blackburns Lars Jacobsenand Fiorentinas Per Krldrupare big names in defence.Christian Poulsen of Juventusand Daniel Jensen of WerderBremen are familiar names inthe midfield. While AjaxsDennis Rommedahl andArsenals Nicklas Bendtnerlead the line along with theteam captain Jon DahlTomasson of Feyenoord.

    The Danish supporters arealmost as famous as the stars.Known as Roligans, their aimis to show the oppositebehaviour to hooligans.

    THE SERBIAN nationalteam will be playing inits first FIFA World Cupas an independent nation thisyear in South Africa.The team was formerly part

    of the Yugoslavia side whichevolved into the Serbia andMontenegro national footballteam which competed in thelast World Cup in Germany in2006. In the same year, Serbiadeclared its independence asthe successor state to the StateUnion of Serbia andMontenegro, and the team wasofficially renamed the Serbianational football team.Meanwhile, the Montenegro

    national football team wascreated to represent the newstate of Montenegro.Swapping their blue jerseys

    and taking on the nicknameThe Beli Orlovi (the WhiteEagles), Serbia played its firstinternational match in historyversus the Czech Republic onAugust 16, 2006.The White Eagles secured

    their place in South Africawith an impressive 5-0 win

    against Romania inBelgrade.Drawn into group D, Serbia

    will play their first matchagainst Ghana on June 13,followed by Germany on June18, and will face Australia onJune 23.A force to be reckoned with,

    the teams top players includeManchester Uniteds NemanjaVidic, who is widely regardedas one of the best centre-backsin the world, and highlyexperienced Milan Jovanovic,the 28-year-old Standard Liegewinger who is known for hisspeciality free-kicks and hasnine international goals.Also on side is versatile

    midfielder Dejan Stankovic,who excels in both attack anddefence.Coach Radomir Antic has a

    wealth of tactical expertise,having played professionallyfor 17 years and managed FCBarcelona, Real Madrid andAtltico Madrid. He favoursthe traditional 4-4-2 formation,but with a focus on attack andoutsmarting opponents.

    With such a promisingpackage, Serbia should haveplenty of surprises in store.


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  • 9Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    La Roja has youthon its sideAFTER 12 years out ofthe World Cup finals,Chile is back with avengeance.Returning for the first time

    since 1998, the team launcheda triumphant qualificationcampaign under coachMarcelo Bielsa.The teams most notable

    World Cup performance so fardates back to 1962 when Chilehosted the tournament andfinished third.This year, the team has

    emerged stronger than everqualifying after beatingColumbia spectacularly in a 4-2 win away from home. In fact,they finished second in thecontinental qualifying group,just one point behind Brazil,with 32 goals.Expectations are high for

    Chile, which certainly hasyouth on its side. The team,known as La Roja, boasts theyoungest average age of all theSouth American teams and itsmembers are hardworking andphysically fit.

    They are also thrivingunder the leadership ofArgentinean coach,Marcelo Bielsa. A realcharacter, Bielsa isnicknamed El Locomeaning TheMadman,and is renowned forhis total dedication to thebeautiful game.It is hoped that Bielsa will

    change the face of Chileanfootball forever and his line-upof talented players includes anexplosive combination ofscheming Matias Fernandez, akey midfielder hailed BestSouth American Player in2006, enterprising right wingerAlexis Sanchez, and theexperienced Humberto Suazo,who always seems to be in theright place at the right time.The team are full of attack

    and like to be forward at everyopportunity. They should beentertaining to watch andChiles chances certainly lookpromising. Heres hoping theywill excel themselves in SouthAfrica.

    AT HOMELanguage: SpanishPopulation: 16.09 millionArea: 4,506kmNational anthem: HimnoNacional de Chile

    Currency: Chilean pesoTime difference from UK: -4Best time to visit: BetweenNovember and March or, ifyou prefer the ski season,August and September

    National emblem: Chileancoat of arms with a condorand huemul (a small deer)

    Known for: Poetry, wines,beaches, The Andes

    Warriors setfor battleKOREA Republic areAsias most successfulteam to date, with oneof their best World Cupachievements in 2002, whenthey landed fourth place.The Taeguk Warriors were

    the first team to representAsia in 1954, although theydidnt take to the world stageagain until 1986 in Mexico.For South Korea, 2002 was a

    great tournament when theypart-hosted the World Cupwith Japan. The co-hosts beatItaly and Spain to reach thesemi-finals, where they lost 1-0to Germany.Their 2006 World Cup

    experience in Germany wasntas fruitful as they whereforced out early from thegroup stage.This time around the

    Taeguk Warriors reached thetop of their group, even aftertwo goalless draws with KoreaDPR then a draw in the finalround.Former Korea Republic

    midfielder Huh Jung-Moo is

    leading the team throughoutthis World Cup after takingover the managers role inDecember 2007. This wont bethe first time Huh has takenhis skills to the World Cup as,in 1986, he scored against Italyand then went on to be thetrainer and assistant coachduring 1990 and 94, not tomention being an interimcoach of Korea Republic twicebefore.The South Korea coach has

    now named two English-basedplayers in his 30-manpreliminary squad for thissummers World Cup in SouthAfrica.Manchester United

    midfielder Park Ji-Sung,captain, and Bolton wingerLee Chung-Yong, were bothnamed in the initial group.Celtics Ki Sung-Yong is theother British-based player.Cho Won-Hee, who signed for

    Wigan last year but is on aseason-long loan with Koreanside Suwon Bluewings, alsomakes the squad.South Koreas first match, in

    AT HOMECurrency: Won (W)Language: KoreanPopulation: Around 48.6mWhen to go: Autumn(September to November)usually enjoys blue skiesand warm weather, April toJune also has mildtemperatures but summer(late June to August) ismonsoon season andwinter is often bitterly cold

    Capital city: SeoulAttractions: peaks of theBaekdudaegan; Seoul, themodern city with ancient,centuries-old temples;Korean national park

    Group B, is against Greece onJune 12, before they faceArgentina in Johannesburg onJune 17 and Nigeria in Durbanon June 22.

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  • 10 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

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  • 11Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

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  • 12 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Can Henrywin through?

    AT HOMECurrency: EuroPopulation: Around 62mConsists of: Lushagricultural countryside inNormandy and Brittany,Alpine peaks, the dryhinterland of Provenceplus a varied coastline

    President: Nicolas SarkozyAttractions: The Louvre(museum); Eiffel Tower;Euro Disneyland

    National Emblem: A shieldwith a lion-head and aneagle-head on each endwith an axe, oak and laurelbranch

    AFTER a controversialgame against Irelandto get into thequalifying stages, France hasalready achieved one goal this is the first time theyvequalified on four consecutiveoccasions.From the late 1990s the high

    standards the French teamshowed mean Les Bleus soonbecame regarded as one of theworlds leading teams.In 1998, as the hosting

    country, France became worldchampions after beating Brazil3-0, but in the following WorldCup in 2002 the championssuffered a shocking defeat. Inthe first three games Francenever even scored a goal; withan injured Zinedine Zidaneand Thierry Henry being sentoff, Senegal, Uruguay andDenmark sent the defendersout of the competition.Not easily disheartened, four

    years later France returnedfighting and came so close tolifting the trophy, only losingout on penalties to Italy in thefinal.

    Led by RaymondDomenech, the countryslongest-serving national coach,securing a place to play inSouth Africa wasnt a walk inthe park, although France didend up finishing second inqualifying Group 7 of theEuropean Zone. The team lost3-1 to Austria, had difficultiesagainst Lithuania andRomania, then despite playingwith 10 men achieved a 1-1draw against Serbia, whoactually qualified first in thegroup. Frances game pickedup pace and it was 5-0 againstthe Faroe Islands and then a 3-1 victory over Austria.This 2010 World Cup will see

    Thierry Henry team captain asthe previous caption PatrickVieira has injury troubles.Other players taking part in

    the World Cup includeArsenals William Gallas andBacary Sagna, Gel Clichy,Abou Diaby, as well asChelseas Florent Malouda,Nicolas Anelka along with thetalents of Franck Ribry andYoann Gourcuff.Frances next match for the

    World Cup is set to take placeon June 11 against Uruguay,and then on June 17 againstMexico and June 22 againstthe host nation South Africa.

    Trumpetingtheir intentCHAMPIONED as thefirst African team to bea genuine threat forthe World Cup trophy, Cted'Ivoire (Ivory Coast) will nodoubt want to live up to thereputation.Affectionately known as Les

    lphantes (The Elephants),Cte d'Ivoire qualified forSouth Africa 2010 withoutlosing a single match and,after their premature exit fromthe tournament in 2006, they'llno doubt feel like they've got apoint to prove.Now older and wiser, the

    team return to the World Cupwith a great line-up of first-class players and findthemselves in the reliablehands of ex-England coach,Sven-Gran Eriksson.An experienced club coach,

    the 2010 tournament will bethe Swede's third World Cupand, with previous success intaking England through to thequarter finals on twooccasions, the Ivorians willsurely be hoping that some of

    his success will rub off.South Africa 2010 will be the

    team's second appearance inthe World Cup, after makingtheir debut in the final stagesof the competition duringGermany 2006 and losing outto Argentina and Netherlandsin the so-called 'group ofdeath'.But despite this defeat, the

    Cte d'Ivoire's flair and stylemore than proved that theteam were a force to bereckoned with and ensuredthat the footballing world satup and took notice.The team's world class

    footballing talent boasts apedigree of formidable players,including Chelsea double-actDidier Drogba and SalomonKalou alongside Yaya Tour,Bakan Kon, EmmanuelEbou, Kolo Tour and ArthurBoka who create a soliddefence.However, it seems that

    history could be in danger ofrepeating itself for Cted'Ivoire with the team beingdrawn in arguably the

    toughest group alongside thelikes of Portugal, Brazil andKorea DPR in Group G.So what will the future hold?

    No-one knows, but what can bepromised is 540 minutes offascinating football.

    AT HOMEOfficial language: FrenchPopulation: Approx 16.6million

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    Climate: The Ivory Coast hasa tropical climate, with fourseasons in the coastal andcentral regions and twoseasons in the northernsavannah region

    National emblem: Theelephant and the coat ofarms of Cte d'Ivoire

    Known for: Coffee, cocoa,pineapple and palm oil






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  • 13Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Lions findingtheir mojoAS the most successfulAfrican team,Cameroon will beclosely watched in SouthAfrica this summer.The team, which is the top

    African nation in Fifasrankings, has won the AfricanCup of Nations four times andreceived a gold medal at the2000 summer Olympics inSydney. Whats more,Cameroon has qualified for theWorld Cup no less than sixtimes and is also the firstAfrican team to reach thequarter finals of the WorldCup, having got to the quarterfinal stage during the 1990tournament.Yet despite a good track

    record at international-levelfootball, the team, which isknown as Les LionsIndomitable (The IndomitableLions), has had a mixed startto the 2010 tournament.Cameroon played poorly

    during early qualifying gamesand this dismal start led toGerman coach, Otto Pfister,

    being replaced with currentcoach, Paul Le Guen.However, with new

    leadership from Frenchman,Le Guen who hassuccessfully managed the likesof Lyon, Rennes and Scottishclub, Rangers Cameroonseem to have found their mojoagain.Newly installed captain,

    Samuel Etoo, who plays forItalian club, Internazionale,and Pierre Web scored thetwo goals which tookCameroon through to the finalstage in South Africa.Etoo and Web, who has

    played internationally since2003, arent the only stars inCameroons squad though.Other key players includeIdriss Carlos Kameni; JeanMakoun and, Geremi Njitap,who has previously played forthe likes of Chelsea, Newcastleand Real Madrid.The team also includes

    experienced defender, RigobertSong, who played in the 1994,1998 and 2002 World Cups, and

    nephew, Alexandre Song, anArsenal midfielder.Drawn in Group E,

    Cameroons first SouthAfrican fixture is on June 14when they play Japan.Following that, TheIndomitable Lions faceDenmark on June 19; thenHolland on June 24.

    AT HOMELanguages: French andEnglish

    Population: Approximately19.5million

    Capital: YaoundDid you know: Cameroon hasone of the highest literacyrates in Africa

    Known for: Mount Cameroon an active volcano whichlast erupted in 2000;coffee, cocoa, bananas,cotton, sugar and tobacco

    Desert Foxeshave cunningALGERIA will take to thefield against Englandin their second GroupC match of World Cup 2010,on June 18 in Cape Town.But any England fan

    expecting a walkover againstthe team from North Africashould check their historybooks. In 1982, the thenEuropean champions, WestGermany, faced Algeria in thegroup stage of that yearsWorld Cup. Boasting playerslike the European player of theyear, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge,the Germans were confident ofvictory but found themselveson the receiving end of goalsfrom Rabah Madjer andLakhdar Belloumi and wentdown 2-1. Algeria went on toplay more delightful football tobeat Chile but, having lost toAustria, they found them-selves out of the tournamentas West Germany and Austriaplayed out a 1-0 Germanvictory that meant both teamsqualified ahead of theAlgerians.

    If Algeria can recapturethis level of form and flairthen their 2010 groupopponents, England, USA andSlovenia, should beware.That said, it has been 24

    years since the Algerians nicknamed Les Fennecs, TheDesert Foxes last graced theWorld Cup finals, though theyhave won the African Cup ofNations in this period.Ranked 31st in the world by

    FIFA, Les Fennecsqualification to this yearsfinals had both highs andlows, with excellent homeform but indifferent on theroad.The Desert Foxes ultimately

    secured safe passage through aplay-off with current AfricaCup of Nations championsEgypt, which Algeria won 1-0.Players to watch out for

    include midfielders Matmourand Ziani, who both ply theirtrade in Germany, along withMeghni of Lazio and captainMansouri. Meanwhile, at theback youll recognise

    Portsmouths Belhadj andBougherra of Rangers.Algerias coach, Rabah

    Saadane, is in his fourth stintin charge of the national team.Hes had varying levels ofsuccess in the past but theresevery reason to believe Algeriacan ruffle some big feathers inthis years tournament.

    AT HOMELanguage: ArabicPopulation: 34.8 millionCapital: AlgiersCurrency: Algerian dinarNational emblem: A sceneshowing the hand of Fatimaand the rising sun over theAtlas Mountains

    Known for: Arab, Turkish andFrench fusion cuisine. Thenovelist Albert Camus andthe philosopher Derridawere born in Algeria

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  • 14 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Tiny but sovery talentedURUGUAY is the secondsmallest country interms of area in SouthAmerica and currently has apopulation of under 3.5mpeople.Thats not a huge crop from

    which to choose a successfulnational football team infact, only six nations withpopulations smaller thanUruguay have everparticipated in the World Cup.And yet, Uruguay have won

    the competition twice!Despite being such a small

    country, Uruguay is one of themost successful footballingnations in the world. Alongwith their two World Cuptitles, they have twice beenOlympic champions and havewon South Americas CopaAmerica 14 times.As the Olympic champions,

    Uruguay were chosen to be thehost nation for the firstfootball World Cup in 1930. Thehome team won all of itsmatches, beating neighboursArgentina 4-2 in the final.

    Their next success was in1950, where they took on hostsBrazil and beat them in theirfamous Maracan stadium.Since this victory, the form ofUruguay has been inconsistentin the World Cup and the teamhave often failed to qualify forthe tournament.Despite a lack of recent

    World Cup form, theirpedigree is undeniable and theteam currently sits 18th in theFIFA world rankings.The route to the final was

    not altogether straightforwardfor the Uruguayans. Despitescoring 28 goals and collecting24 points, a final game defeatto Argentina saw their closerivals leapfrog them into theautomatic qualification places.Uruguay then had to negotiatea play-off against Costa Rica inorder to secure passage toSouth Africa.Landing in World Cup Group

    A, Uruguay are in a verytricky spot, having to play2006s losing finalists France,the talented Mexican team andthe host nation, South Africa.

    Coach Oscar WashingtonTabarez will know his teamwill do very well to comethrough the group stage, butstar strikers Diego Forln ofAtletico Madrid, Luis Surezof Ajax and Sebastin Abreu ofBotafogo will be hoping to firetheir team to glory once more.

    AT HOMELanguage: SpanishPopulation: 3.4 millionCapital: MontevideoCurrency: Uruguayan pesoNational emblem: A coat ofams crowned by a risingsun, with scenes depictingjustice, strength, liberty andabundance

    Known for: Traditional musicand dance, Grappamiel, analcoholic drink consumedon cold mornings, and twicewinning footballs WorldCup!

    Hoping to golike clockwork

    AT HOMELanguage: DutchPopulation: 16.4 millionArea: 41,543 sq kmNational anthem: HetWilhelmus

    Currency: EuroTime difference from UK:GMT +1 hour

    Best time to visit: May toOctober

    National emblem: LionKnown for: Tulips, cheese,clogs and windmills

    THE Netherlands nation-al football team has agood track record whenit comes to the World Cup.The Dutch squad, famed for

    wearing bright orange jerseys,the traditional colours of theNetherlands, made its firstappearance in 1934 andreached the peak of its successin the 70s when it wasnicknamed Clockwork Oranjefor its precision passing.The Holland side went on to

    win Euro 1988 and reached twoconsecutive World Cup finalsin 1974 and 1978, but lost bothto their host nations, WestGermany and Argentina.The Oranje qualified for the

    2010 FIFA World Cup winning2-1 away to Iceland and willjoin in Group E, facingDenmark, Cameroon andJapan.In fact, the Netherlands won

    all eight of their games, onlyletting in two goals, andbecoming the first Europeanteam to qualify so the team islooking to be on fine form forthe tournament in South

    Africa this summer and ishungry to win.The team is coached by Bert

    van Marwijk, who didnt makemuch of an impression duringhis playing days, having onlygained one international cap,but who is making more of animpact as a coach, leadingFeyenoord to the UEFA Cuptrophy in 2002 before takingthe helm at Holland.Their recent 100% record in

    qualifying for the World Cuphas seen his popularity riseconsiderably.He intends to spend a lot of

    time getting to know hisplayers, sticking with the 4-2-3-1 formation favoured by hispredecessor, Marco vanBasten, and encouragingplenty of interchange betweenmidfield and attack a nod tothe country's Total Footballtradition.His star players include

    Arjen Robben, JorisMathijsen, Andre Ooijer, DirkKuyt, Mark van Bommel,Klaas Jan Huntelaar andGiovanni van Bronckhorst.Rafael van der Vaart, Robin

    van Persie and Nigel De Jongare also ones to watch,especially Wesley Sneijder atop goal-scoring midfielderwith a fine range of passing.The Dutch team have often

    been seen as highly talentedand capable but a littletemperamental.

  • 15Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    SOUTH Africa might bethe hosts of this yearsFIFA World Cup butthey have their work cut out ifthey wish to fulfil their dreamof lifting the cup.The team has a relatively

    short footballing history,having only appeared in twoprevious World Cups, so has todo more than most othersquads to prove its worth butplaying on home soil shouldnever be underestimated.Known as Bafana Bafana, the

    team has had a mixed trackrecord to date, having failed tomake it beyond the groupstages in either of their twoprevious appearances . Andyet the team has also shownglimpses of brilliance, whichcould be a sign of things tocome. One such example istheir defiant performanceagainst Brazil last year in theFIFA Confederations Cupwhen, despite losing, theycertainly put up a fight andproved their mettle.Undoubtedly South Africas

    leading player is midfielder

    Steven Pienaar, who currentlyplays for Everton where hehas shown himself to be aconfident and mature playerand great all-rounder. Hisperformance is considered tobe key to the success orotherwise of his homecountrys team.Other players whose names

    will certainly figure in SouthAfricas standing in thecompetition are wingbacksSiboniso Gaxa and TsephoMasilela.Captain Aaron Mokoena is

    keen to rally his national teambut is realistic about theteams shortcomings at thesame time.And who is the man charged

    with the unenviable task ofleading South Africas bid forthe World Cup? BrazilianCarlos Alberto Parreira's re-appointment as coach of theteam was consideredcontroversial by many, but toothers he is the only man whocould take the squad all theway.Parreira certainly has an

    impressive track record, with

    AT HOMELanguage: 11 officiallyrecognised languages, withAfrikaans and English themost widespread

    Population: Approximately49 million

    Motto: Unity in diversityCurrency: RandTime difference from UK: +2hours

    Best time to visit: Autumnand spring are both warmand dry

    National emblem: Springbokantelope

    Now meet thehome team

    a wealth of experience underhis belt and, with news that theSouth African team isstruggling with some fairlymajor pre-tournament injuries,it looks like hes going to needthat experience sooner than hethought.

    Super Eaglesready to soarAFTER a disappointingfew years, it's fair tosay that expectationsaren't high for Nigeria in thisyear's World Cup.Once ranked as the 5th best

    team in the world, Nigeria'sfortune hasn't been quite sogood in recent times. But, witha talented squad andexperienced new coach,Nigeria could be the darkhorse of the tournament.Of course, their non-

    appearance at Germany 2006and the far-from-smoothqualifying round will countagainst them. Yet you can'thelp but feel hopeful after theSuper Eagles' dramatic 3-2 winover Kenya in the qualifyingrounds.The team's new coach, Lars

    Lagerback, also fares well and,with over 10 years' experienceleading and co-managingSweden, he could be just whatNigeria need to recapturesome of their previous magic.Amongst his previoussuccesses include taking theSwedes to three consecutive

    European Championships aswell as reaching the knockoutstages of Korea/Japan 2002and Germany 2006.Combine this with the team's

    ample supply of talentedplayers and Nigeria guaranteethat they remain a real threat.Chelsea star, John Obi Mikel

    stands strong in the mid-field,with captain Joseph Yobomaking his presence felt indefence and YakubuAiyegbeni, Victor Obinna andNwankwo Kanu setting alively pace up front.Likewise, Nigeria have a

    good record in otherinternational competitions,winning the 1996 OlympicFootball Tournament and theAfrican Nations Cup in 1980and 1994. Their first WorldCup appearance in USA 1994was also promising with theNigerian's beating Bulgaria 3-0 no mean feat consideringBulgaria went on to beatMexico, Germany, Argentinaand Greece.However, Nigeria's biggest

    challenge is yet to come, with

    matches against Greece, KoreaRepublic and Argentina inGroup B. In particular, theSuper Eagles' upcoming gameversus the Argentine's istipped to be 'the' match of thegroup with both teams lookingfor success after just scrappingthrough to secure their placein South Africa.

    AT HOMEOfficial language: EnglishPopulation: 154.7 millionCurrency: Nigerian Naira(NGN)

    Climate: Temperatures arehot year round, with dryseason running fromOctober to April in the northand November to March inthe south

    National symbol: The coat ofarms of Nigeria

    National motto: Unity andFaith, Peace and Progress

  • 16 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    ALL eyes will be on Italythis year as thedefending championsreturn to the World Cup to tryand duplicate the teamsaccolade of winning twice onthe run in 1934 and 1938.And looking at the current

    team and their form, thiscould be a real possibility. Thesquad topped their group witha performance which waswidely considered solid andefficient. All together the teamtotted up seven wins and threedraws, scoring a total of 18goals.The team has a pretty

    impressive track record,having won the FIFA WorldCup four times and finishingrunner-up in 1970 and 1994, aswell as claiming third place in1990.So who are the teams star

    players? Top scorer for Italywas Alberto Gilardino, whomade four strikes, including astunning hat-trick scored inless than 15 minutes againstCyprus.

    Captain Fabio Cannavarowas voted FIFA World Playerof the Year in 2006 and eventhough he is now 36, he is stillconsidered a vastlyexperienced and capableplayer.Seen by many as one of the

    best goalkeepers of hisgeneration, Gianluigi Buffonis at the heart of Italysdefence and renowned for hisquick reaction time and he hassaved some truly amazing goalattempts.An inspiration to his team

    and his supporters alike,midfielder Gennaro Gattuso,31, is considered an excellentall-rounder whosedetermination to win is highlycontagious and helps to spuron the whole team.Coaching this competent and

    experienced team is MarcelloLippi, who isnt afraid to makecontroversial changes whennecessary which can oftenreap rewards.An interesting fact relating

    to the 61-year-old is that five ofthe 12 goals scored by Italy in

    Hoping to doit all again

    AT HOMELanguage: ItalianPopulation: Approximately56.5 million

    Currency: The EuroBest time to visit: Springand autumn are oftenconsidered the bestseasons

    National emblem: A starsurrounded by thebranches of an olive treeand an oak tree,symbolising the south andnorth of the country

    the 2006 World Cup were madeby substitutes.He is remarkably modest

    about his achievements,despite having notched up 31consecutive undefeatedinternational games.

    Gods will beon their side

    AT HOMELanguage: GreekPopulation: 11 millionCapital: AthensCurrency: EuroNational emblem: Dolphin,phoenix

    Known for: The cradle ofWestern civilisation;democracy, philosophy,literature, architecture,the Olympic Games!

    MONEY may be tootight to mention inGreece right now,but the World Cup shouldprovide welcome distractionfor the Greek populace.After all, this is a nation that

    pretty much invented sportingcontest on a grand scalethrough the Olympic Games.It is perhaps with this in

    mind that Greeces coach, OttoRehhagel, on qualifying forthis years World Cup, said:The players have beenrewarded for their incrediblepassion and competitive spirit.We said that before achievingsuccess you need to have thegods on your side.By invoking those Olympian

    gods the coach, known to fansas King Otto, will be hoping tolight the passion in the heartsof Greek supporterseverywhere to believe his teamare capable of doing somethingvery special at this yearstournament.Despite having only graced

    one World Cup and threeEuropean Championship

    finals before 2010, the Greekteam has tasted major successthis side of the millennium.King Otto was given hisunofficial title after leadinghis team to unlikely victory atthe European Championshipsin 2004.Despite odds as big as 150-1

    against from bookmakers, theunfancied Greeks beat thechampions France, the muchfancied Czech Republic andthen the host nation Portugalin the final.The Greek team narrowly

    missed out on automaticqualification for South Africa,finishing a point behindSwitzerland. This meanthaving to negotiate a toughqualifier against Ukraine.There will be no easy

    matches for the Greek team,but they are ranked 12th in theFIFA rankings and will hope toimprove on their only otherWorld Cup appearance in 1994when they lost all their games.In Group B they will meet

    two of those same opponentsfrom 1994, Argentina andNigeria, along with South

    Korea.The Greek nations hopes

    will rest on the form of themainstays of the Greek team.These include GiourkasSeitaridis of Panathinaikosand Sotirios Kyrgiakos ofLiverpool in defence; KostasKatsouranis and team captainGiorgos Karagounis.

  • 17Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    On the crestof a wave!QUALIFYING in secondplace behind rivalsUSA, Mexico have nowreached the World Cup finalsfor the fifth consecutive time.Although theyve qualified

    many times, Mexico oftenleaves the tournament in theearly stages and they had theirbest performance back in 1970and 86, which coincided withthem hosting the competition.Mexico held the 1970 World

    Cup where they progressed toreach the quarter finals, justbefore half-time the score was0-1 to Mexico, but Italyprevailed beating Mexico 4-1.Mexico was the first nation

    to host two World Cups and, in1986, Mexico once againreached the quarter finals,drawing with West Germanybut being beaten 4-1 in thedreaded penalty shoot-out.Now with Javier Aguirre,

    nicknamed El Vasco, backleading the team in the SouthAfrica 2010 event, things arelooking more hopeful.Javier helped the team

    qualify for the 2002 World Cup,

    leading them to the top of thegroup that contained Italy,Croatia and Ecuador, but thensaw defeat to USA. He thensigned with Osasuna, but hasnow returned in a bid to drivethe Mexican team forwardwith the aim of progressingbeyond the Round of 16, thestage reached in the last fourWorld Cup finals.The team are currently

    proving to be in top form,winning matches against fivechallengers during thequalifying stages plus a drawagainst Trinidad and Tobago.As much as the coach has

    helped turned Mexicos luckaround, veteran CuauhtemocBlanco made a big impact onthe team when the 36-year-oldcame out of retirement.Key players in this years

    World Cup include GuillermoOchoa, Efrain Juarez, AndresGuardado and Giovani dosSantos as well as skipperRafael Marquez.Mexico have their first game

    against the host nation, SouthAfrica, on June 11, then, on

    June 1, they will be competingagainst France. They completetheir group matches againstUruguay on June 22.

    AT HOMECurrency: Mexican PesoLanguage: SpanishPopulation: Around 110mWhen to go: The coastaland low-lying regions,especially in the southernhalf of the country, arefairly hot and humid fromMay to September, havingthe highest rainfall andhighest temperatures

    Famous for: Tequila, theAztecs, Corona beer,Sombrero hats,fajitas/burritos

    Capital city: Mexico CityNational emblem: An eaglewith a serpent in its talon

    Underdogsmay surprise

    AT HOMELanguage: SlovenePopulation: 2.5 millionCurrency: EuroBest time to visit: Warmesttime is June, July andAugust, with skiing fromDecember through toMarch

    National symbols: Thethree peaks of MountTriglav; the coat of armsfor Slovenia and the leafof a linden or lime tree

    Known for: Skiing, LakeBled, caves andLipizzaner horses, whichoriginate from modernday Slovenia

    THE football equivalentof David taking onGoliath, Slovenia havealready exceeded expecta-tions by making it into thisyear's World Cup.A relatively new national

    team, Slovenia was formedfollowing the split of theSocialist Federal Republic ofYugoslavia in 1991, and with apetite population of just twomillion, it's fair to say that theteam has a few factors goingagainst it.However, like most

    underdogs Slovenia's staturedoesn't seem to be a problemfor the ambitious team, andwhat the Slovenia populationlacks in size it certainly makesup for in pride and passion.This might go some way toexplain how the side knockedout rivals Poland, CzechRepublic and Russia home toover 142 million people ontheir way to South Africa 2010.Naturally, the team has a

    much shorter footballingpedigree than most of theirWorld Cup counterparts, but

    after qualifying in theirsecond foray into thetournament they can certainlystand tall.Coach Matjaz Kek is

    renowned for being a strongleader, and Slovenia's shockqualifying result againstRussia has been heralded asone of the great upsets ofrecent sporting history.The side have also shown

    promising form in previouscompetitions, and despitefailing to qualify for the 2006World Cup, Slovenia were theonly team to beat the feistyItalians in a shock 1-0 victorybefore Italy went on to win thetournament.Key players on the side may

    not include some of the bigstars other teams boast, but asteady and reliable squad withan iron defence have ensuredSlovenia are in good form. Inparticular, keep an eye out forFC Cologne striker MilivojeNovakovic and WestBromwich Albion playerRobert Koren.The question is will their

    passion be enough to go onestep further and beat rivalgroup members England, USAand Algeria and fight theirway out of the group stages?

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  • 18 Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Always greatcompetitorsWHETHER its buildingsome of the worldsbest cars or playingworld-class football, you canalways rely on Germany toconsistently deliver.The country is famed for its

    uber-efficiency and thisquality, together with thewealth of star-players withinthe current squad, has helpedGermany to prove itself aworthy contender for thisyears World Cup.During qualification for the

    South African tournament,Germany finished top of theirgroup, after beating Russia 1-0in Moscow. However this earlysuccess is hardly surprising,as Germany has won the WorldCup three times in 1954, 1974and 1990.The team has also been

    crowned European championsthree times and, in the last 14World Cups, the country hasnever finished lower thaneighth.Germany has been to seven

    World Cup finals and reached

    the semi-final stage 11 times.Penalty shoot-outs are alsosomething of a speciality forthe German side, as every timetheyve been in one during aWorld Cup final, they havewon.With such impeccable

    credentials, its easy to seewhy Germany is regarded asone to watch in this yearstournament.So after a fantastic start,

    expectations are high for thetalented team, playing undercoach, Joachim Lw.A former midfielder, Lw has

    a wealth of experience havingcoached at clubs like VfBStuttgart, and gained vitalinternational coachingexperience as JurgenKlinnsmanns assistant duringthe last World Cup in 2006.A force to be reckoned with,

    Germanys current squad hasno shortage of star players,although the loss of captainMichael Ballack to injury is aserious blow. Striker MiroslavKlose, who plays for Germanclub Bayern Munich, and

    goalkeeper Hans-Jorg Butt arenames to watch.Lw has also introduced two

    new players to the squad aheadof the World Cup HolgerBadstuber and Dennis Aogo.Drawn in Group D, Germany

    will face Australia on June 13;followed by Serbia on June 18and then Ghana on June 23.

    AT HOMEPopulation: Approximately81.7 million

    Language: GermanCurrency: EuroNational emblem: Blackeagle

    Famous Germans: AlbertEinstein; Karl Marx; Ludwigvan Beethoven and racingdriver Michael Schumacher

    National cuisine: Germanbeers, sausages and winesare world famous

    The Yanksare coming!ONCE consideredfootball underdogs, theUSA are now hotlytipped to finish as one of thetop eight of the World Cup.Drawn in Group C, the

    talented team will becompeting against England,Algeria and Slovenia to headfor World Cup glory. Andwhile, their previous form hasat times been questionable(stars and stripes fan willsurely be keen to forgetGermany 2006 when the sideunexpectedly crashed out ofthe tournament at the firsthurdle) it seems that USAcoach Bob Bradley has helpedthem return to top form.Starting the competition

    with typical efficiency, theUnited States won five of theirsix penultimate qualifyingencounters including a 9-0win against Barbados beforegoing on to conquer the finalphase of qualifying rounds,beating Mexico 2-0, drawing 2-2against El Salvador andwinning 3-0 against Trinidad

    and Tobago.Their only defeats came in

    the form of a 3-1 loss withCosta Rica and a disappointinggame ending 2-1 to Mexico.However, they managed tokeep their cool and went on tostake their claim in the WorldCup with a 3-2 win Honduras.Understandably, hopes for

    the team to finish in a topposition are now high and 2010is the United States' sixthconsecutive appearance in theWorld Cup finals.Last year, the team also

    experienced success at theFIFA Confederation Cup inSouth Africa where theyexpertly demonstrated thatthey're on fine form, defeatingSpain in the semi-finals andleading Brazil 2-0 in the finalbefore finally missing out 3-2.So who are the ones to

    watch? Los Angeles Galaxy'sLandon Donovan (whorecently made an appearanceat Everton on loan) has longbeen one of the team's starplayers. He's joined by a raft ofstars including Oguchi

    Onyewu, Jozy Altidore, TimHoward and Clint Dempseywho all play on European turf.

    AT HOMELanguage: EnglishPopulation: Approx 309million

    Comprises: Fifty states and afederal district

    Currency: US dollarsTime zones: The UnitedStates spans six time zones Eastern Time, CentralTime, Mountain Time andPacific Time as well asHawaii Time and AlaskaTime

    National emblem: The baldeagle

    Known for: The GrandCanyon, Hollywood, the WildWest and the Statue ofLiberty

  • 19Mediamix Supplement Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Team makingfinals debutSINCE the break-up ofthe formerCzechoslovakia, theSlovakians have yet tocontest a World Cup finals,until now.In South Africa, the

    Slovakian team will hope toclimb towards the heightsachieved by theCzechoslovakian team thatwon the EuropeanChampionships in 1976 andthe Olympics in 1980.The Slovakian national team

    was formed in 1993 and iscurrently ranked 38th by FIFA.Originally, the team were

    named the Slovak Republicand first played in 1939 but,after the Second World War,became part of theCzechoslovakian nationalteam. For over fifty years theSlovakians played no matchesas an independent country.Upon gaining independence,

    Slovakia returned to worldfootball in 1994 with a 1-0victory over United ArabEmirates in Dubai.

    They won seven of their tenqualifying fixtures, toppingtheir group on the way toSouth Africa.They kick off their World

    Cup in Group F on June 15against comparative minnowsof world football New Zealandand will be looking to takemaximum points.If they can also take three

    points from their second gameagainst Paraguay, theirpassage to the next round maybe complete before their toughfinal group game against thedefending World Cupchampions Italy.The men looking to take

    Slovakian football to the nextlevel are coached by formerSlovakian internationalVladimir Weiss.Liverpool defender Martin

    krtel is hoping to fight backfrom a broken metatarsal totake his place among hiscountrymen. Other keyplayers include Napolimidfielder Marek Hamk whooften pops up with vital goals,

    and Stanislav estk who wasSlovakias top goalscorerduring qualifying.If their best players are at

    their peak and the team hitsform, theres no reason theSlovakians wont be able topropel their nation to the nextlevel in world football.

    AT HOMELanguage: SlovakPopulation: 5.3 millionCapital: BratislavaCurrency: EuroNational emblem: The coatof arms shows a doublecross representing thecountrys Christian faith,atop three symbolicmountains

    Known for: The Carpathianand Tatra mountains,skiing and tourism

    Sweet dreamsof successTHE national footballteam of Switzerland hada bit of a shaky start inthe World Cup 2010 qualifiersbut it may have been just thewake-up call the team needsto succeed in South Africa.The Swiss team, known as

    Schweizer Nati in German, LaNati in French and Squadranazionale in Italian (asdifferent regions of thecountry speak differentlanguages), were beaten 2-1 byLuxemburg at home but theygot their act together and wereunbeaten in all of the matchesthat followed, managing tofinish first in their group,ahead of Greece, Latvia andIsrael.It will be the ninth time The

    Nati have competed in thefinals of the World Cup. Theirbest performances so far havebeen reaching the quarter-finals three times, in 1934, 1938and when the country hostedthe event in 1954.The youth teams have been

    more successful, winning the

    2002 U-17 EuropeanChampionship and the 2009 U-17 World Cup.However, Switzerland coach

    Ottmar Hitzfeld is hoping it isnow Switzerlands time toshine.Hitzfeld is very well

    respected as a coach inEurope, having previously ledBorussia Dortmund andBayern Munich to UEFAChampions League glory.The former Germany

    amateur international hastwice been voted World Coachof the Year and twice winnerof the Champions League.His team has a strong

    pedigree of solid star players,such as experienced teamcaptain Alexander Frei, theBasel striker who isSwitzerlands recordgoalscorer, and fellow strikerBlaise Nkufo whose eye for theball up front saw him scorefive times to help Switzerlandqualify, as well as talentedyoung players, TranquilloBarnetta, Eren Derdiyok andkeeper Diego Benaglio.

    AT HOMELanguage: German, French,Italian and Romansh

    Population: 7.7mArea: 41,277 sq kmNational anthem: SwissPsalm

    Currency: Swiss FrancBest time to visit: June toOctober or December toFebruary for skiing

    National emblem: A redsquare with a white cross

    Known for: Chocolate,cheese, banking system,watches and mountains

    Its about time the Swissteam earned themselves amajor trophy and withHitzfield at the helm, whoknows what they can achieve?










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