Six reputations that remain intact It has not been a great World Cup for the Premier League talent
on display. The English-based players have generally looked tired, off the pace and out of sorts.
Here's six players who have successfully flown the flag for the league. 1. Carlos Tevez The
Manchester City striker has been one of [.
World Cup's most despicable green since Robert Cristiano Ronaldo put the icing on a disappointing
World Cup for him by seemingly spitting towards a TV camera as he left the pitch following
Portugal's defeat to Spain. Although he didn't spit at the camera or cameraman, he did appear to
make a point of staring down the camera [.
Adidas footwear best at dealing with Adidas Jabulani As we head towards the World Cup
quarter-finals, it has emerged that the Adidas F50 Adizero is currently topping the scoring charts.
The players might be battling it out for the Golden Boot, but meanwhile the boot manufacturers are
desperate to prove their footwear has the golden touch.
1. Sometimes the good guys do win. Or at least the attacking, exciting,
don't-want-10-behind-the-ball guys. 2. Barcelona will be delighted they signed David Villa before
his value doubled after the tournament. 3. Cheating Spaniards, putting a tall striker on who can't
be bullied. That is not allowed.
1. We got to see the first penalty shootout of South Africa 2010. The price was watching the worst
match of South Africa 2010 first. 2. Putting yourself in the shoes of a Paraguayan, it is hard to
suggest that the ends didn't justify the means. A first ever World Cup quarter-final for them. 3.
It has [.
Carlitos 'fesses up Carlos Tevez has revealed that he knew he was offside when he scored
Argentina's opening goal against Mexico on Sunday. The controversial goal - the second poor
refereeing decision that day, if I remember correctly - caused Mexican outrage when it was replayed
on the big screen in the stadium.
Visa debit Ex-Birmingham loanee Chucho Benitez's hopes of a Premier League return have been dealt a
blow after he failed his work permit English test for the second time. The Blues wanted to re-sign
the Ecuadorian and West Ham were reportedly interested. Despite living and working in the country
for a year, Benitez failed the required test [.
Over halfway through - who's got your backing? The cop out answer of 'this could be England's year'
is, alas, no longer applicable. With that in mind, we are eager to conduct a quick survey as to
whose year you think it might be. So as we hurtle towards the quarter-finals we want to get your
1. Brazil can polish off slick attacking sides as well as the ones that want to park the bus. 2. I
hope the Chile camp convince Marcelo Bielsa to seek medical help before the set off home. He looked
on the verge of a coronary. 3. I'm not sure the Brazilian tactic of two players standing behind
50-year-old man engages in nursery activities Frank Lampard's effort was the only thing that
definitely crossed the line yesterday. Germany coach Joachim Loew crossed the line of common
decency by picking his nose and eating it on his bench. That's right: he dug one out in the dug
out. Spotted on The Spoiler
When OTP roving reporter Dan O'Connor found out the World Cup was coming to a new continent for the
first time, he knew he had to witness it for himself. Unfortunately, he arrived in Asia eight years
too late. And he went to the wrong part of Asia. But here is the first instalment of [...]
1. A dull performance with little to report and Holland take their place in the quarter-finals.
What wouldn't you give?! 2. You could have got pretty good odds on Robert Vittek being the
joint-top scorer ahead of the quarter finals before the tournament started. 3. Arjen Robben
successfully underlined what a luxury it is to be adding [.
Ex-England star attempts to over-populate the planet Steve McManaman was discussing the pressure of
taking a kick in a penalty shootout on ESPN when he unwisely decided to introduce some figures he
plucked from thin air into his argument. The former Liverpool and Real Madrid man warns that it is
much more difficult to take a penalty [.
The most patriotic Ghanaian to shun his country gets over-friendly Marcel Desailly's work for ITV
has undoubtedly been among the most entertaining broadcasts of the World Cup. You can usually rely
on him to be extraordinarily happy and excited to the point of incomprehension when Ghana are
around. But his efforts following Ghana's win over the USA [.
1. Another match, another reason for video technology. Even the linesman wanted to change his
decision after spotting a replay of Carlos Tevez's offside goal. 2. You can complain about Tevez's
first, but not his second. Just an unstoppable strike. 3. Don't get too close to Gabriel Heinze
with a camera.
Take that, FIFA broadcast Uploaded with ImageShack.us Apart from Ricardo Osorio, whose howler let
in Gonzalo Higuain, the fall guy of Argentina's second goal was the cameraman who ended up taking a
couple of whacks from Gabriel Heinze. The cameraman was firstly headbutted by Heinze as he filmed
the goal celebrations.
1. That was absolutely atrocious. Venting your anger might help, but it was so poor that I'm
struggling to find the enthusiasm to remind you all how bad it was. 2. A heartbreaking penalty
shootout defeat would have been absolute heaven, it really would. 3. Surely Sepp Blatter must be
sparked into life by embarrassment by Frank [.
Ivory Coast star's comedy mind-games Premier League fans will already know that Arsenal's Emmanuel
Eboue is as mad as a hatter. But he has been bringing his unique brand of humour to the world stage
at the World Cup. The Ivory Coast man listened in while North Korea coach Kim Jong-hun passed
instructions onto his players, nodding [.
He's not wearing combat gear That's right: Kim Jung Woo is currently part way through his national
service. That's why he was obliged to salute during the national anthem before South Korea's loss
to Uruguay yesterday.
1. A fantastic result for Ghana and (sorry American readers) the tournament. Maintaining an African
interest into the quarter-finals is a big bonus for the World Cup. 2. Good to see Ghana conceding a
penalty instead of winning one for once. 3. Bob Bradley might have got a couple of selection
decisions wrong, but I don't think [.
1. Until the last 10 minutes this was a tale of two curious goalkeeping decisions. Both teams
openers came when the keeper came needlessly a-wandering. 2. But Luis Suarez's late curler was
worthy of winning any game. Just beautiful. 3. England would not mind taking on someone like Brazil
in those sort of conditions.
1. It would have been really interesting to see how this would have finished if Chile had finished
with 11 men. 2. Chile keeper Claudio Bravo provided a text book example of the phrase 'rush of
blood to the head'. Chile were on top before he gifted David Villa a goal. 3. Referring back to a
1. This game promised so much and delivered so little. 2. Jabulani exists in a parallel universe
where Japan are the world's best free-kick takers in the world and the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo
are clueless. 3. Since a draw was enough for both teams to go through, perhaps this result was
always on the cards.
1. At last! A team that knows how to take free-kicks with the Jabulani. 2. Japan are obviously a
much better team than people gave them credit for pre-tournament. 3. Jon Dahl Tomasson probably
couldn't have picked a worse game in which to break Denmark's all-time goalscoring record. 4. It
wouldn't be a surprise to see a [.
Potentially lucky kit gets another outing England and Germany will line-up in the same colours as
in 1966 when they meet in their World Cup second round clash on Sunday. The all-red kit which saw
England to victory against Slovenia, after two draws in white, will get another outing to test
whether it truly is a lucky [.
Strange kit artistry Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner was spotted colouring in the white section of
his socks with a red felt-tip pen last night. If the bizarre artwork was supposed to bring some
sort of luck then it failed miserably as his side crashed out following defeat to Japan. Spotted on
Keeping the media in check Algeria vetern Rafik Saifi slapped a female journalist after his side's
defeat to USA yesterday. The 36-year-old spotted reporter Asma Halimi, of Algerian newspaper
Competition, as he walked through the interview zone after the match and hit her with an open hand
in front of several witnesses.
1. Playing in a World Cup final mustn't be that great: neither of the previous finalists seemed
very bothered about it. 2. That was one of the most exciting matches of the tournament so far.
End-to-end in the second half and it really could have gone either way. 3. There was something
cruelly satisfying about watching Italy's [.
Has anyone seen squashed Landon Donovan? The USA left it late against Algeria before Landon Donovan
grabbed the injury-time winner that took them through to the next round at Slovenia's expense. The
squad celebrated the last-gasp goal in true playground style with a pile on. See the goal after the
Booze, don't lose England's more relaxed playing style against Slovenia was down to a pre-match
pint, according to Fabio Capello. The England coach relaxed his strict rules ahead of the match to
allow his squad to have a beer the night before the match. The Italian was convinced to change his
approach after England's tense opening two [.
A close contest, no doubt England goalscoring hero Jermain Defoe has said he would like a
bareknuckle brawl with former coach Sven-Goran Eriksson. The Tottenham striker was talking to James
Corden's World Cup Live while taking part in a sparring session with the Gavin and Stacey star.
When Corden suggest the punchbag was Sven on the day [.
1. Arguably the most jubilant celebration of a 0-1 defeat ever. 2. How refreshing that, in a game
that could have seen either side go out, they both went flat-out for victory. 3. Mesut Ozil is a
joy to watch. His goal was an outstanding strike. 4. Jerome got one over Kevin Prince in the battle
of the [.
1. We are through. That's the main thing. 2. Another startlingly accurate performance from the
Wembley branch of the Italia 90 Re-enactment Society. 3. John Terry has definitely redeemed himself
for his press conference catastrophe with some trademark brilliant defending and blocking. 4. This
was a satisfying result in that it wasn't a scraped, undeserved 0-1 win, [.
Sheer class If England fans had been screaming out for more passion from the players following the
dire 0-0 draw with Algeria, then the improvement in this department was neatly summed up by this
ridiculous attempt at a clearance from John Terry. The ex-skipper, eager for personal redemption
after blotting his copybook this week, attempted to clear [.
The word 'sitter' doesn't do it justice Nigeria striker Yakubu somehow missed an open goal from
four yards with a side-footed shot during last night's 2-2 draw with South Korea. The miss was so
bad that it would have been sickening wherever it happened, but given that Nigeria would have
qualified for the second round in [.
That would do it Ahead of England's crunch match against Slovenia this afternoon, it is worth
bearing in mind that these two sides met at Wembley less than a year ago. On that occasion it was
England who emerged 2-1 winners. The game featured a bad dive from Wayne Rooney (for which he was
rewarded with a [.
You are what now? Following his spat with John Terry, England boss Fabio Capello does not seem to
have forgiven his squad. He used his latest press conference to hurl abuse at the players (and
1. Lionel Messi will probably be stalked to bed tonight by Sokratis Papastathopoulos. 2. Hopefully
the Greek FA will realise now that Euro 2004 was a total fluke and that dour, defensive
performances with 10 men behind the ball don't generally win tournaments. 3. Once again Diego
Maradona's celebrations were probably the highlight of the match.
Lightning doesn't strike twice for Tel France's short stint at the World Cup ended in the same
fashion as their qualification campaign concluded: with a Thierry Henry handball. His attempt
against South Africa didn't quite work out as well as the one against the Republic of Ireland. On
this occasion Henry's basketball skills were spotted by the [.
1. 'It's the taking part that counts,' doesn't usually wash at top-level sport, but it was
something of a relief that France turned up for this. 2. 'Vlad' Mphela just isn't as lethal as his
name might suggest. South Africa had the chances to make Mexico sweat a bit more. 3. It seems Yoann
Gourcuff really is [.
Domenech offers the wagging finger of friendship Concerned that his squad has not come out of the
World Cup looking petty and childish enough, France coach Raymond Domenech refused to shake hands
with his South African counterpart Carlos Alberto Parreira at the end of the match which saw them
both crash out of the tournament.
After Slovenia and the USA drew 2-2 earlier on in the day on Friday, what was needed from the
England team that walked out onto the pitch at Cape Town was a display of confidence and a
willingness to rise to the occasion. That simply did not happen. What we got was a woeful
Argentina squad gutted to discover band's split Lionel Messi has broadened his musical horizons
during the World Cup after finding out about an exciting new band called Oasis! And Messi and his
team-mates have offered the Gallagher brothers a blank cheque to reform and play at a celebration
party if Argentina win the World Cup.
1. This one probably won't be getting broadcast in North Korea (unless they stick to long shots
showing the team in red scoring lots of goals). 2. Talking of which, never mind national pride -
I'm fearful for the white away kit as it goes to be washed. 3. Cristiano Ronaldo is flash even when
he doesn't [.
Keep it zipped Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque has devised a cunning method to avoid any Nicolas
Anelka-type outbursts from his squad. He trialled his new technique on defender Gerard Pique during
last night's victory over Honduras. Expect this to be rolled out for the whole team for their final
group game against Chile.
1. Spain probably aren't crap after all. 2. David Villa took the opportunity to show Barcelona fans
what Â£35m of striker gets you. 3. Unfortunately, it apparently doesn't get you penalty-taking
ability. 4. Gonzalo Higuain perhaps has Uri Geller-esque ability to make people miss penalties. 5.
Gerard Pique is in the wars.
Dye for the cause Given the drawn-out process to settle on North Korea's kit for the World Cup, you
would think that they would want to look after it now they have got it. But apparently not. The
Dear Leader may provide many good things but it would be difficult to mount a case that washing
Airbrushing history Oh sweet video editing software, you can make all of the bad things disappear.
Like Robert Green's disastrous goalkeeping clanger against the USA, for instance. All gone away
with a few clicks of buttons and some digital trickery. Now that's more like it! Video via 101GG
Collect your yellow card with this orange t-shirt We like these. To the untrained eye it is just a
run-of-the-mill Holland retro t-shirt. But burst into your Fabrizio Ravanelli celebration and you
are instantly transformed into your favourite Oranje player mid-goal celebration. See more designs
Dead dictators and co share their tactics This spoof by Spitfire Ale mixes in some modern
footballing cliches with some wartime rivalries to create a humorous World Cup advert. There's a
variety of historical figures involved not all of whom history looks upon favourably.
1. If there is any justice FIFA will overturn Kaka's red card. And then call a press conference at
which Kaka is allowed to elbow Abdelkader Keita in the head repeatedly until he sustains the
injuries he feigned. 2. Luis Fabiano managing to weigh in with two goals which showcased both his
football and volleyball skills.
What does farce descend into? Now you know we are not ones to stereotype here at OTP, but if you
had to pick a World Cup squad that would fall-out over a heated debate which would esculate and
eventually result in a strike you could probably a hazard a guess that the team involved was
France. In [..
1. Daniele De Rossi has the most sensitive shirt ever. 2. Italy know how to win World Cups and they
seem to think two draws was the way to start off. So well done England - sorry we doubted you. 3.
New Zealand must -and should - be absolutely delighted with their World Cup. It was difficult [...]
1. Slovakia have been really poor in their two games. And they topped Slovenia's group in
qualification. Nuff said. 2. Paraguay, like Chile, Uruguay and the South American teams that go
without saying, are very watchable. 3. Wigan seem to have made a very good signing in AntolÃn
Alcaraz. On the scoresheet against Italy and now [.
1. We can safely stand by our earlier conclusion that Cameroon are not Africa's great hope at this
World Cup. 2. The awful defending, end-to-end football and exciting action was the perfect antidote
to some of the drab games we have seen over the last couple of days. 3. It was a bittersweet
afternoon for Christian Poulsen.
1. Australia can feel really hard done by. They would have won this match without the very harsh
red card for Harry Kewell (the ref was chronic in general, by the way). 2. The World Cup
goalkeepers ought to be ashamed that even Harry Kewell can get more of his body behind the ball
than them. 3. [...]
1. For a while these two looked like they were attempting to out-bore England and Algeria, but at
least they mustered a goal between them. 2. And that goal featured some goalkeeping that Robert
Green could be proud of. 3. Holland can be quietly pleased about their six points without Arjen
Robben even leaving the comfort of [.
When OTP roving reporter Dan O'Connor found out the World Cup was coming to a new continent for the
first time, he knew he had to witness it for himself. Unfortunately, he arrived in Asia eight years
too late. And he went to the wrong part of Asia. But here is the first instalment of [...]
Wazza gets angry with supporters Wayne Rooney vented his anger at booing England supporters as he
left the pitch following last night's disappointing 0-0 draw with Algeria. Rooney and his England
team-mates were booed off the pitch after the awful performance. But the Manchester United striker
took exception to the treatment and said into a nearby camera: [.
1. It might not have been the worst result, but for lack of imagination, lack of creativity, lack
of energy and lack of decent chances that was the worst England performance in a very long time. 2.
That was not the birthday present that Fabio Capello would have wanted or expected. Sadly there's
no gift receipt [.
1. USA were robbed in the end. Absolutely nothing wrong with Maurice Edu's would-be last-gasp
winner. 2. Great result for England though (depending on what Germany are planning on doing over
the next few days). 3. Pah! Michael Bradley's only in the team because he is the coach's son... 4.
Best goal so far from Valter Birsa?
1. Having been the only team to impress in the opening round of matches, Germany obviously decided
they were doing things the other way round to everyone else. 2. Germany's strikers missing
penalties: it could be a sign the end is nigh! 3. Loved Milan Jovanovic's disappearing man
celebration. Don't think he realised the drop was quite [.
They think it's all over... It will be very interesting to hear the viewing figures for ITV HD's
coverage of England v Algeria this evening. Perhaps a few people will be having second thoughts on
their new technology. For anyone wavering, here is an amusing interpretation of the 1966 World Cup
final as broadcast by ITV.
French subs' vigorous warm-up routine France's squad didn't have to work hard to look like their
didn't give a damn about last night's match given that Patrice Evra's tear was the closest anyone
came to breaking into a sweat. Nonetheless, they truly have made it an artform. Stopping critics
who say the squad is too old in [.
Rob Green eliminated from our enquiries England missed the chance to practice with the
controversial Adidas Jabulani World Cup match ball because a package delivered to Wembley was
mysteriously lost. Adidas sent 25 balls to Wembley, which were signed for but then disappeared.
England's squad lost a possibly vital three months of become accustomed with the ball's [.
The strange irony with this one was that after sobbing through the national anthem, France's
players didn't really seem to care if they won the match or not. Captain Patrice Evra lacked the
raw emotion of North Korea's Jong Tae Se. Video via 101GG.
Sponsored post South Africa geared up for the first ever World Cup to be held in Africa and so far
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providers are also noticing a rise in activity among people interested in sportsbook betting on the
I like women, I like women It is par for the course that Diego Maradona's press conferences descend
into fits of giggles, but this was unusual even by his standard. A rather unusual question from an
English journalist about Maradona's hugs and kisses with his Argentina squad doesn't translate very
well into Spanish.
1. If you had a bet on Gonzalo Higuain to win the golden boot you are looking pretty good at the
moment. 2. It is reassuring that one of the big-guns other than Germany is eager to make an
impression on the tournament. 3. It is equally reassuring that for all their attacking flair,
Argentina look very [.
Sponsored post Every summer, poker players and gamblers from all over the world converge on the Rio
All-Suites Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV for the World Series of Poker. While this year is no
different in regards to poker player turnout, the atmosphere is a bit different as World Cup fever
has hit the [.
1. Congratulations to Greece for winning their first World Cup match ever. I can't imagine a less
deserving team though. 2. Nigeria's players will probably have plenty to say to Sani Kaita. It was
pure stupidity that led to his sending off and stopped his side cruising to victory. 3. Well done
to Chinedu Obasi.
Stuff ya! Come down to the Luis Suarez Teddy Bear Workshop and build your very own cuddly Suarez.
Be sure to put the stuffing in properly as we have had instances of it overflowing through the
mouth. Also, incorrectly stuffed bears are not very steady and may fall to the ground repeatedly.
Tell us your conclusions, win a t-shirt Hopefully you have been enjoying OTP's conclusions on the
World Cup matches so far. Now you have seen all the teams in action we are throwing it over to you.
Our friends at ShotDeadInTheHead have given us one of their fantastic t-shirts to give away to the
author of the [.
1. The euphoria of hosting a World Cup can only carry you so far. South Africa were really poor
tonight. 2. Diego Forlan is a better footballer than we thought. We knew he could score goals, but
he completely bossed the game this evening and weighed in with a great strike and a penalty. 3.
Luis Suarez's [.
1. 3-1-3-3 is where it is at! Attack is the best form of defence, after all. 2. Germany v Chile for
the the final. The beautiful game will prevail! 3. The beautiful game doesn't always get you goals
though - only a deflection off Jean Beausejour's midriff broke the deadlock. 4. Rodrigo Millar will
definitely have to [.
1. Football truly is a funny old game. I don't think any of us saw that one coming. 2. The greatest
sporting competition on earth and the goal that defeats the favourites would have made most Sunday
League goals look classy. 3. Spain's fitness issues look to have hit them hard. Too many players
looking off the [.
Don't get us wrong - we love the World Cup. But a little bit of critiquing won't do any harm 1.
People who haven't got a clue about football talking about the World Cup It is nice that people who
don't their Assou-Ekotto from their Eboue suddenly find football interesting for four weeks every
four years, but [.
Splat! Keep your eyes above the 'J' of Johannesburg to see a disgruntled man with a rucksack
picking up a fan who is jumping up and down at the bottom of the stand and throwing him over the
edge of the tier. We know the stewards are striking, but vigilante crowd control is a bit over the
Brazil boss' unusual touchline fashion Brazil coach Dunga knew he had a special occasion to attend
yesterday. Unfortunately he got confused and thought he was going Christmas shopping in 1993, not
managing Brazil against North Korea in 2010.
1. Insular communist states can produce a well-organised, effective football team. On the evidence
of their match earlier, Portugal and Ivory Coast both have cause for concern. 2. Brazil look
beatable, but their two goals were both moments of pure class. 3. Protractors are not issued to
Brazilian full-backs at school.
Oops New Zealand goalie Mark Paston put in a performance that David James would have been proud of
in his prime as his side managed a 1-1 draw with Slovakia. This near-disastrous sliced clearance
was probably the pinnacle of his list of clangers and unusual decisions. Video via 101GG
Tears from Tae Se It turns out the 'People's Wayne Rooney', Jong Tae Se, is more like the People's
Gazza. The North Korea striker was emotional wreck during the national anthems before his side's
clash with Brazil. The 26-year-old could probably teach us a few things about pride at playing at
the World Cup, but we [.
1. Wow, New Zealand are so much better at football than Old Zealand. That was a great result to
score their first ever World Cup point. 2. Keeper Mark Paston is laugh-a-minute dodgy goalkeeping
at its best. Highly watchable. 3. Fair play to New Zealand for providing a bit of excitement
lacking in so many of the [.
Making sure you know your Thierry Henrys from your Terry Henrys What is a prickly mountain? We are
not really sure, but it is definitely bigger than a spiky hill. It sounds like it would be pretty
useful to plonk in front of your goal in any case. That's right, Martin Prickly Mountain is Maarten
Sewer spill at England base If you thought England looked a bit poo against the USA, that is
nothing compared to the forthcoming Algeria match. The Three Lions' kit had to be rewashed after a
sewage pipe burst over the kit causing a bit of a stink. The kit was washed, ironed and neatly
folded, and had [.
Blonde bombshell As practical jokes go, whoever mocked up the invitation from Sepp Blatter to
Rigobert Song claiming that the 2010 World Cup was Abel Xavier-themed fancy dress did pretty well.
In fact, the veteran defender is supposed to look like the Indomitable Lion from Cameroon's crest,
1. It is very reassuring to see the reigning world champions pick up an underwhelming 1-1 draw in
their opening match. 2. Given some of the softer red cards so far in the World Cup, a few players
can allow themselves to look at Cristian Riveros' unpunished studs up leg-breaker on Riccardo
Montolivo and scratch their [.
Spurs full-back's fashion statement(s) Cameroon defender Benoit Assou-Ekotto forgot that he wasn't
a woman when he booked in for his hair appointment and accidentally order a high ponytail in a sort
of bun. Realising his error, he promptly flashed his psychedelic pants to distract the
1. Contrasting fortunes for the Liverpool representatives. Dirk Kuyt and Daniel Agger both got
themselves on the scoresheet, but both for Holland. 2. The first comedy own goal of the World Cup.
A true landmark moment for OTP. 3. But Kuyt's hair was definitely the biggest own goal on display.
4. Eljero Elia is much less [.
1. Perhaps Cameroon are not Africa's great World Cup hope after all. 2. Rangers fans no doubt
enjoyed Paul Le Guen's outstanding tactical display. Good old nostalgia. 3. England's stuttering
friendly performance against Japan might not have been as disappointing as we thought. 4. Thousands
more empty seats: I hope Blatter and co are beginning to see [.
No, I'm on TV mum Manchester City striker and BBC World Cup pundit Emmanuel Adebayor suffered
on-air embarrassment when his phone rang as he was talking to Gary Lineker live on BBC1. The phone
rang twice leaving the Togo international attempting to discreetly turn his phone to silent mode.
Spotted on 101GG
WANTED: Dirk Kuyt's sideburns We are not sure whether Holland's pre-World Cup camp involved
lawnmower wrestling, but something peculiar has certainly happened to Dirk Kuyt's hair. The
Liverpool striker seems to have let someone hack away around his ears for a very interesting look.
It does draw attention from his face a bit, we suppose.
He's only bloody scared of him If you had been baffled by the inclusion of Newcastle midfielder
Jonas Gutierrez in Argentina's World Cup squad and then in their starting line-up as a defender
then be baffled no more. It turns out Diego Maradona is petrified of the man they call Spiderman.
The Argentina coach inadvertently let this [.
Heinz Meanz Goalz Saucy Cristiano Ronaldo might be a Real Madrid player these days, but he's still
a red at heart. The Portugal winger, without an international goal for 16 months, has compared
finding the net to tomato ketchup. He said: "Goals, as a football legend once told me, are like
ketchup. Sometimes, as much as [.
US President enjoys David Beckham's distressed face Barack Obama took a break from his presidential
duties to enjoy Robert Green's howler against the USA and particularly David Beckham turning into
Mr Angry afterwards. It is Photoshopped, of course, before anyone starts hacking away at any oil
1. Best match of the World Cup so far and best team performance of the World Cup so far. That was a
real masterclass at times. 2. Mesut Ã–zil is not going to be playing for Werder Bremen next season.
3. I hope that Little Dracula referee doesn't get anywhere near an England match. I bet he [...]
Communist stuck in the mud While most teams at the World Cup are brushing up their tactics, working
on set pieces and focusing their minds on the task in hand, North Korea appear to be ensuring that
their playground games are up to scratch. But this rather unusual stuck in the mud/tunnel/worm game
was not without its [.
1. I wish we could conclude what was going through Zdravko Kuzmanovic's head when he conceded a
late penalty, but we still have no idea what he was thinking. 2. Congratulations to Asamoah Gyan
for breaking the record for the world's longest goal celebration. 3. The award for most appropriate
World Cup benchwarmer goes to Neven SubotiÄ‡.
Hand of daft sod Abdelkader Ghezzal managed to pick up the fastest red card for a substitute for
two bookable offences in World Cup history with this crazy attempt to control the ball with his
hand. He had earlier become the third fastest substitute booking at a World Cup when he was yellow
carded for shirt-pulling [.
Not quite as handy as a half-time pie FIFA don't need random drugs tests to detect this sort of
pothead - you would have thought security might have seen him on the way into the ground! This
disgruntled looking chap was cheering on Ghana against Serbia. Via @FootballRamble
Link: 1. Algeria are probably wishing Faouzi Chaouchi's suspension had not been overturned. Maybe
he will deflect a bit of attention away from Robert Green. 2. That made France-Uruguay look like a
nail-biting thriller. 3. Abdelkader Ghezzal is not Diego Maradona. His ridiculous handball was
thoroughly deserving of his red card for being so stupid.
You're the one that I want, roo, roo, roo John Travolta picked up the latest pay cheque from his
financially rewarded but ultimately humiliating business relationship with Australian airline
Qantas by flying in his plane to wish the Socceroos well ahead of their opening match against
Germany. The Grease star did some rather strange dancing before delivering [.
The Slim Shady of the Desert Foxes Hey! It's everybody's favourite referee-butting goalkeeper
Faouzi Chaouchi. The Algerian is mainly sporting the balding, spiky, peroxide undercut look at the
moment. It's lovely.
ITV has been forced to apologise after a technical balls-up led to viewers of its HD channel
misssing Steven Gerrard's opening goal during last night's 1-1 draw with USA. During the build up
to England's first World Cup goal, the channel cut to an advert for Hyundai. Coverage returned to
the match just in time to [.
1. From an editorial point of view, I have to include a clip of that goal but I won't be clicking
it and would be quite happy to never see it again after all those replays last night. 2. After five
minutes you had to wonder if this was really England in a major tournament. All [...]
Man Utd left-back finds scapegoat Patrice Evra has become the first player to blame a poor World
Cup performance on vuvuzelas. The left-back managed to pack two excuses as to why the droning
trumpets were responsible for France's disappointed 0-0 draw with 10-man Uruguay into a short
quote. He said: "We can't sleep at night because of [.
1. Another couple of performances like that and Vincent Enyeama will be playing Premier League
football next season. 2. Diego Maradona: World Cup player, World Cup manager, and now World Cup
ball boy. 3. The tournament's better teams, such as Spain and Brazil, must be slobbering at the
prospect of facing Jonas Gutierrez at right-back.
More World Cup tuneage Manchester comic Frank Sidebottom has launched his very own unofficial World
Cup songs titled Three Shirts On My Line. It is a parody of a very well known World Cup anthem, but
we will let you guess which one. The song is inspired by Frank's England shirt collection â€“ home,
away and goalie [.
1. Ji-Sung Park's suave new haircut has superpowers. 2. If Greece find themselves without a point
at the end of the group stage they can always rely on a points bailout and borrow some from
Germany. 3. Way too many empty seats. FIFA needs to reassess its pricing or at least increase the
cheaper/freebie allocation for the [.
Revolution striker has dirty telly New England Revolution striker and one-time USA World Cup
hopeful Taylor Twellman was seemingly unimpressed with Greece's performance in their opening World
Cup match against South Korea. According to the American: "The Greeks just s**t all over my tv."
Hopefully he is talking metaphorically and hasn't just got some very ill-mannered Mediterranean
Humiliating defeat number two When your are casting your mind back over England-USA games, it is
the humiliating defeats that stick out. Like this one from 1993, when Alexi Lalas headed home the
USA's second goal. David Baddiel and Frank Skinner met up with Lalas (before he went corporate) to
relive the goal for Fantasy Football's Phoenix [.
Just bizarre! With just hours to go until the England-USA match, a zoo in America has been playing
its own meerkat version of the big game. Starring players including Jermain Defue, Jay DeMeerkat
and (for some reason) Wayne 'fuzzy Wazza' Rooney the patriotic meerkats battled it out over a tasty
1. You know it hasn't been a festival of football when the highlight of the first-half is the
goalkeeping popping two balloons. Truly topped off by the slo-mo replay. 2. Given the circumstances
of France's qualifications, Thierry Henry might have been well-advised to appeal for a handball. 3.
At times like this you have to wonder how [.
1. South Africa conceding is to paracetamol what South Africa scoring is to headache. 2. Cracking
finish for the first goal of the tournament. Take a bow, Siphiwe Tshabalala. 3. Off The Post didn't
have to wait long for its first mention of the tournament. Just ask Katlego Mphela. 4. Vuvuzelas
creating faux bum notes during [.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Chile Maker: Brooks Prem personalisation: Gonzalo Jara.
Verdict: Woohoo! We have finished on a high in Group H with a bit of variety. Brooks' most famous
client was QPR. They currently have Sri Lanka on their books, but are mostly associated with
running. It does look like a running shirt, but after the [.
It's World Cup time folks! If you fancy a bit of a flutter on the biggest tournament on the planet
but you don't want to lose your hard-earned cash then we have the perfect deal with you. Betclic is
offering a Â£20 free bet. So you can place your bet and Betclic will refund the Â£20 [...]
USA 1-0 England England's World Cup defeat to USA at the 1950 World Cup in Brazil remains one of
the biggest shocks in the national team's history. With Stanley Matthews rested, the Three Lions
lost the match courtesy of a solitary Joe Gaetjens goal. Gaetjens was one of three USA players
investigated after the tournament amid claims [.
Sponsored post 11) We've Got The Whole World At Our Feet - England World Cup Squad (1986) Performed
to the tune of He's Got The Whole World In His Hands and modified from Nottingham Forest's anthem
for the 1980 European Cup Final, this is a quaint attempt at celebrating the World Cup with a well
known tune [.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Honduras Maker: Joma Prem personalisation: Maynor
Figueroa, Wilson Palacios, Hendry Thomas. Verdict: I shouldn't like it, I know I shouldn't. And yet
there is something strangely endearing about it. Perhaps it is the fact they are minnows, perhaps
it is the relatively obscure kit manufactuer.
Sponsored post The past couple of years have not been smooth for Mexico, with three coaches passing
through and more than sixty players representing the team. Recently, though Mexico have found a
steadier hand in the influence of Javier Aguirre. The former Atletico Madrid coach has put together
a balanced team of rising stars and established [.
Silky skills for a good cause var vaunit_unit_type=0; var vaunit_width=300; var vaunit_height=250;
var vaunit_id=542; It's pretty damn cheesy, but since it is raising awareness of such an important
cause we will let this slide without comment. Suffice to say, the irony of using viral marketing to
combat HIV is not lost on us.
When PES lands you in hot water It just isn't a major tournament without tension and division in
the Holland camp. That's why Hamburg's Eljero Elia decided to allegedly insult Morrocans during a
live internet video broadcast. Elia and Ryan Babel were filming themselves playing a Pro Evolution
Soccer tournament against each other while streaming the thrilling [.
Sponsored post Spain's performance in qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa was
inarguably top notch. As well as winning every single one of their ten games, Spain came out as the
European zone's second top scorers with twenty eight goals, and conceded only five. Having shown
such a strong side during their qualifying [.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Switzerland Maker: Puma Prem personalisation: Philippe
Senderos, Valon Behrami. Verdict: Credit the Swiss, they have managed to sneak a sponsor on their.
For Credit Suisse, no less. Their position in Europe means they avoid the Africa-by-numbers efforts
of some Puma kits, but it is not exactly imaginative.
Dropped striker plots vuvuzela attack Brazil striker Alexandre Pato, who did not make Dunga's
23-man squad, has revealed he will be watching his side play while brandishing football's most
dangerous instrument. The AC Milan star said: "I've got my vuvuzela and I'm going to watch Brazil
become world champions.
The madness of Maradona Tactical genius Diego Maradona has been teaching his Argentina players the
pain of defeat this week. The losing team in a training ground match was forced to line-up on the
goal-line while the winning side's firing squad pelted balls at their backsides. In crazy Diego's
defence, he was among the losers in the [.
The Lego brick road to South Africa Lego recreates England's qualification for the World Cup in
this reconstruction video using Lego animation. It is a nice little round-up, although Lego Wayne
Rooney does look pure evil. We would also like to know the criteria for being allocated a yellow
DVD rental company gives Fab Cap some inspirational inspiration Fabio Capello has been sent a
series of DVDs providing material for his team talks after a poll to find cinema's most
inspirational speeches. DVD rental firm LOVEFiLM conducted the survey and has now shipped the top
DVDs to England's base in Rustenburg.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Spain Maker: Adidas Prem personalisation: Pepe Reina,
Cesc Fabregas, Fernando Torres. Verdict: Spain have ditched their traditional navy in favour of a
more royal shade of blue, and we think it is better for it. The European Champions go into the
World Cup in good style in one of the best kits at [.
We've got a copy of 100 Hits Football Anthems to give away. Just come up with the best caption for
this picture of England on safari Just leave your entry as a comment below. Remember to leave a
real email address so we can contact you. We will pick the winner later today. You can find out
Three Lions search for Big Five England took a break from training yesterday to take a safari trip.
The squad visited the Pilanesburg Safari Park - a 40-minute drive from their Rustenburg base - to
take in some of South Africa's wildlife. The players got a very close look at some elephants, rhino
and zebra on their [.
A love of kicking footballs: Becks' Achilles heel David Beckham got a ticking off at training as he
disobeyed orders not to kick the ball. The ex-England skipper continually disobeyed orders from the
squad's coaching staff and doctors as the temptation to ping the ball around a bit proved too
A bit saucy A young artist has given Fabio Capello a tasty makeover with a nod to his Italian
heritage by painting his portrait on lasagne sheets in bolognese sauce. Just as long as he is not
left with egg on his face by the end of the tournament.
You might think Tiger Woods would be well suited to a penalty shootout. Excellent sporting
pedigree, great coordination skills and more than accustomed to taking decisive shots on his own
with the world watching. But throw a goalkeeper into the equation and Tiger just can't hack it!
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Portugal Maker: Nike Prem personalisation: Paulo
Ferreira, Deco, Ricardo Carvalho. Verdict: Nike eventually bowed to Cristiano Ronaldo's demand for
more see-through mesh on the Portugal kit. Unfortunately for C-Ron it is exclusively on the chest
area and backed by the red of the rest of the kit.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Ivory Coast Maker: Puma Prem personalisation: Didier
Drogba, Salomon Kalou, Kolo Toure, Emmanuel Eboue, Aruna Dindane. Verdict: With a large number of
white kits on display, the Ivory Coast kit supplies some much need colour, with just a slight risk
of tusk wounds to the neck.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: North Korea Maker: Legea Prem personalisation:
Seriously? Verdict: You won't be surprised to know that this kit has more politics behind it than
any other World Cup shirt. The tale goes roughly like this: proud communist state has deal with
China Hongxing during qualifying; contract expires; communist state holds out for big-money offer
Ear we go, ear we go The noise from vuvuzela, the trumpets set to provide the soundtrack to the
World Cup, could leave fans with permanent hearing damage, experts have warned. The Hear the World
Foundation - formed by Swiss hearing products group Phonak to raise awareness about hearing loss -
found the trumpets were louder [.
Adam Hawes, founder of Schport - the free grass roots team sports website, used by hundreds of
teams around the UK to make organising their teams much easier - give us the thoughts of the
gaffers of run-of-the-mill Sunday league teams. We got in touch with a good bunch of the Saturday
and Sunday league [.
Nobody messes with my cheeks In the build-up to Brazil's comfortable 5-1 victory over Tanzania
yesterday, striker Luis Fabiano was getting a bit over-familiar for his young mascot companion's
liking. With Fabiano finding his cute little cheeks irresistible, the youngster spins on his heels
to confront him.
100 per cent record for England's build-up England played out another frustrating but ultimately
successful World Cup warm-up match as they beat South African club side Platinum Stars. Goals from
Jermain Defoe, Joe Cole and Wayne Rooney secured victory. More importantly England emerged without
any further injuries with a crocked Rio Ferdinand watching from the sidelines.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Brazil Maker: Nike Prem personalisation: Heurelho Gomes,
Robinho. Verdict: Much like we mentioned about the Holland kit, the Brazil home shirt is one of
those that it is virtually impossible to get wrong. That gold and green was made for summer
tournaments and made for fans of all nationalities whose first-choice kit is [.
Sponsored post More than one in five football supporters would miss the birth of their first child
so they could watch England play in the 2010 World Cup final, a study has found. The survey,
conducted on behalf of online bookmaker PartyBets.com, attempted to find out the lengths that
football supporters would be willing to go so [.
Making sure you know your Thierry Henrys from your Terry Henrys One member of the Italian squad
will be delighted to be on his nation's payroll this summer if only to live up to his name. This
goalie will be earning his state pension in style by picking up his namesake National Insurance
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Slovakia Maker: Adidas Prem personalisation: Martin
Skrtel, Miroslav Stoch, Vladimir Weiss. Verdict: We couldn't possibly suggest that Adidas felt they
had bigger fish to fry, but this does look slightly like it was designed for a mid-1990s Sunday
Soccer Aid - aiding people who don't know how to play soccer The comedy highlight of Sunday's
Soccer Aid clash between England and the Rest of the World was this rather strange corner form
Heroes actor James Kyson Lee, which very much resembles a throw-in. Throughout training and his
substitute appearance, the US star demonstrated a first [.
Come in, Rustenburg. London calling If you have ever wondered whether Steven Gerrard would talk to
the future king any differently than he talks to Tony Gubba we can now confirm that he wouldn't. In
his role as president of the FA, Prince William took part in a conference call with the England
More World Cup tuneage Oh, hello - what's this? Simon Cowell has realised a major money-spinning
event was about to pass him by. Finding a spare finger to shove into the World Cup pie, he has put
together Dizzee Rascal and James Corden (never knowingly underexposed) to record a reworked version
of Tears For Fears' song [.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: New Zealand Maker: Nike Prem personalisation: Ryan
Nelsen, Chris Wood. Verdict: If Australia's kit looked suited to the cricket pitch, their next door
neighbours' shirts inevitably scream rugby. This new home kit was one of the last World Cup kits to
be launched back in May.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Paraguay Maker: Adidas Prem personalisation: Paulo da
Silva, Roque Santa Cruz. Verdict: Nice. Possibly my favourite Adidas kit thus far in World Cup
Kitman. It's bold, catches the eye and screams South America. What more could you want from a South
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Italy Maker: Puma Prem personalisation: They all ply
their trade in Italia. Verdict: Meh. I could take it or leave it. Its cartoon superhero muscle
markings are mildly humorous. Indeed, the kit is available in a double-the-price authentic version,
for those who happen to have the physique of an Italian football, and beer [.
Competition time Off The Post is giving one lucky reader the chance to win a limited edition St
George's cross Azora electric shower worth Â£387. Patriotic footy fans can support England in the
shower this summer thanks to Mira Showers. The sleek, glass-fronted shower, which features the
iconic St George's cross, has been created as a one-off [.
Sponsored post It seems that the fact that all three World Cups held outside of Europe and South
America have been won by Brazil hasn't been lost on World Cup punters who have been backing Dunga's
men to be successful in the first tournament to be held in Africa. Brazil are the only nation to
have won [.
World Cup primate control Top footy journalist Henry Winter had his breakfast disturbed this
morning when he found himself in the middle of a baboon gunfight. Keeping his Twitter followers
updated with the latest twists, the Telegraph writer has given a blow-by-blow account of the
battle. The first sign of trouble came at about 7.
OTP looks back at the ex-Liverpool boss at his bizarre best 1. The facts rant 2. You need glasses
referee 3. Dancing on stage 4. The referee was perfect 5. His novelty socks Farewell, Rafael. We'll
miss the madness
Don't play to be remembered Nike's mock-Mount Rushmore advertisement seems to have struck again
with Rio Ferdinand ruled out of the World Cup. If you thought Emile Heskey wasn't going to have
much of an impact at the tournament, you were wrong. He has already made a big impact on his
captain's knee which has left [.
Because admin errors happen in even the smoothest communist machine North Korea striker Kim
Myong-Won will not be able to take part in the World Cup unless he is used as a goalkeeper, FIFA
has said. The minnows decided to take a gamble with their squad by taking an extra striker rather
than a third goalkeeper.
Tabloid reportedly ready to go to town on World Cup star Apologies for the cryptic nature of this
post, but I don't fancy going head-to-head with the very best lawyer a well-paid footballer can
buy. Any of you who indulge even occasionally in football tittle-tattle will probably have heard
the tale of the married, reportedly hotel-dwelling [.
Pretty in pink We know Jack Rodwell isn't averse to getting his kit off, but this viral to launch
Everton's new away kit is downright bizarre. Its hard to see how the Toffees thought the right way
to reach their target demographic was to have a nervous looking Rodwell staring down a camera and
ever-so slowly [.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Japan Maker: Adidas Prem personalisation: Nothing doing.
Verdict: Nothing particularly noteworthy from this kit-by-numbers from Adidas. We know from its
test runs that it might cause the wearer to want to fire crosses past their own keeper. It also
comes complete with a handy rice bowl-sized napkin included.
23 lions head to Rustenburg England's World Cup squad set off for South Africa last night. Their
flight took off from Heathrow at 9pm. They will arrive in Johannesburg this morning before making
their way to their World Cup base at Royal Bafokeng Sports Campus, in Rustenburg. The 23-man squad
posed for the traditional pre-flight photos on [.
Collapsing keeper Australia keeper Mark Schwarzer clearly not only has a good sense of humour but
also bat-like ears. The Fulham man's comedy timing was impeccable as he pretended to collapse at
the precise moment a Channel 10 News team was asking the Socceroos' doctor about the medical
effects of playing at altitude.
Can I call you Wazza? Comedian James Corden has been helping Wayne Rooney to develop a new, iconic
goal celebration ahead of the World Cup. The Gavin and Stacey star struggles to get the necessary
enthusiasm from Rooney, before coaxing the England star out of his shell with a little routine of
You can take the boy out of Italy... All aboard the pervy plane. Destination: creepiness. With the
world's media watching, Fabio Capello's attempts to have a sneaky look at an air hostess' backside
did not go unnoticed. The England manager appeared fairly content with the appraisal.
Home, tweet home Darren Bent's on-off relationship with Twitter is back on. The Sunderland striker
has been in and out of the social networking craze more often than he's been in and out of Fabio
Capello's plans. We brought you the news back in February that Bent has become so enthralled with
tweeting that he had to [.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Denmark Maker: Adidas Prem personalisation: Thomas
Sorensen, Daniel Agger, Nicklas Bendtner. Verdict: After the devastating news that Serbia had
nicked their flag came the further blow that Adidas had fobbed them off with a design featuring a
More World Cup tuneage There are plenty of World Cup songs about this summer, but OTP is going to
confidently predict that this is the only reworking of a Tears For Fears track by an eight-year-old
child. His name is Luke, but he is going by the rather dubious moniker of iKid as he releases his
What's in a name? Workers at a pub in Manchester have had their name changed by deed poll to Wayne
Rooney. There are now 10 Rooneys behind the bar at the Shakespeare Inn in Manchester city centre.
Landlord Chris Hilditch has ensured he continues to keep his staff in check though - he has changed
his name [.
Y-fronts offer support If you thought World Cup advertising fever was getting a bit much in England
just be grateful that John Barnes is only demanding you buy a Mars bar and not attempting to
influence your choice of underwear. Australia fans are being steered towards these gold Game On
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Holland Maker: Nike Prem personalisation: John Heitinga,
Nigel de Jong, Ryan Babel, Dirk Kuyt, Robin van Persie. Verdict: Nike had a pretty easy job with
this one. The Holland home shirt is one of those football kits that is so iconic it is almost
impossible to do badly.
Who's off to South Africa, and who's not 1. Fabio is a fibber He claimed his opinion had not been
swayed by the two warm-up games, but you would have to suspect that Theo Walcott's omission was
very much based on that. 2. Leighton Baines will probably bite his tongue in future You have to
wonder whether publicising the [.
Don't play to be remembered A Nike advertising stunt has hit the skids thanks to Fabio Capello. A
giant rock carving billboard featuring Theo Walcott has been placed alongside Wayne Rooney, James
Milner and Rio Ferdinand on London's Cromwell Road. The words Play To Be Remembered are carved into
the huge advert.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Ghana Maker: Puma Prem personalisation: Kevin-Prince
Boateng, Richard Kingson, John Mensah, John Paintsil. Verdict:Ghana's kit is simple but effective.
Puma's habit of hiding a symbol of the team's nickname on the shoulder works better for the Black
Stars than some other teams.
This summer's hottest footy fashions Team: Serbia Maker: Nike Prem personalisation: Vladimir
Stojkovic, Branislav Ivanovic, Nemanja Vidic, Zoran Tosic, Nenad Milijas. Verdict:We reckon Nike
had planned to woo Denmark with this kit, but when they decided to go with Adidas instead it was
foisted upon Serbia instead.
More World Cup tuneage This track's claim to fame is that it is the first remotely produced World
Cup song. Mr Capello was put together by a music producer from the north west, video production
team from the north East and band from Yorkshire who had just one face-to-face meeting and put
everything else together over [.
1. If Fabio Capello's plan is to lift all expectations from England going into the tournament then
he is a tactical genius. 2. Things are looking bad when your opponent's centre-backs are more
clinical than your strikers. Three goals between them, while Rooney, Bent and Heskey left
empty-handed. 3. You know it is a World Cup year [.
Time for some revision, Frank Scientists reckon they have finally cracked the secret to taking a
successful penalty kick. Research conducted by Lucozade Sport worked alongside football analysts
Prozone suggests there are a number of things England's players can do to help conquer their
penalty shootout curse.