World Cup Today, Day 20By AP
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
World Cup Today
JOHANNESBURG — A look at Day 20 Tuesday at the 2010 World Cup (all times EDT):
No games scheduled.
On Friday, Netherlands plays Brazil at Port Elizabeth, and Uruguay plays Ghana at Johannesburg in the quarterfinals.
Germany midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger accused quarterfinals rival Argentina of showing no respect for opponents and referees. Germany eliminated Argentina on penalty kicks four years ago at the same stage and there were chaotic scenes after the shootout, with both sides exchanging punches and kicks in a fracas that included team officials from both benches.
“The shootout is still in our memory, but what really weighs heavily on our minds is what happened after that match,” Schweinsteiger said Wednesday. “We have to remain calm and not get provoked and I hope the referee will be very alert.
“You could see their behavior at halftime of the game against Mexico,” he added of a pushing and shoving incident during the second-round match. “When you look at their body language and gesticulations, they way they try to influence the referees, they have no respect. It’s their mentality and character and we’ll have to adjust.”
Lawmakers taking part in a closed-door hearing about France’s World Cup fiasco said coach Raymond Domenech refused to take any responsibility for his team’s misbehavior and offered no real explanation for their debacle. Lawmakers said Domenech, who is retiring, tried to pin blame on the media during the parliamentary hearing. Prominent lawmaker Jean-Francois Cope said his testimony “wasn’t very dignified.”
Nigeria president Goodluck Jonathan suspended the national soccer team from international competition for two years after a poor showing at the World Cup. Nigeria left the competition with just one point, earned in a 2-2 draw with South Korea. Nigeria lost to Argentina 1-0 and Greece. The Super Eagles haven’t won a World Cup match since 1998. The Nigerians went out with two losses and a draw in 2002 and did not qualify for the 2006 World Cup.
Tickets are available for all four World Cup quarterfinals matches. FIFA says that 500 tickets are unsold for the Netherlands-Brazil match in Port Elizabeth on Friday. About 1,200 premier class tickets are available to see Uruguay play Ghana at Soccer City in Johannesburg the same day. And 300 tickets are unsold for the Argentina-Germany game in Cape Town on Saturday. No details were available on number of tickets to be sold for Paraguay-Spain at Ellis Park in Johannesburg.
Ghana could become the first African team to make the semifinals by beating Uruguay. The last of the six African nations left in the World Cup, Ghana is in its first quarterfinals. Previously, Cameroon in 1990 and Senegal in 2002 got to the final eight.
“We’re the best because we have more desire, we feel the heat of the game! Go, South America! Go, go! The people of Latin America are so passionate about everything we do — and that’s what makes all the difference.” — Leticia Villaera, a 29-year-old Paraguayan flight attendant who on a six-hour layover in Rio watched on Copacabana beach as her team advanced for the first time to the quarterfinals, slipping by Japan on penalty shots.
Tags: 2010 Fifa World Cup, Africa, Argentina, Europe, Events, Fifa, Germany, Ghana, International Soccer, Johannesburg, Latin America And Caribbean, Legislature Hearings, Nigeria, South Africa, South America, Southern Africa, Uruguay, West Africa, Western Europe, World cup