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Manchester United vs Wigan 5:0 Highlights

Thursday, December 31, 2009



English Premier League: Manchester United vs Wigan Athletic 5:0. highlights.

Manchester United vs Wigan 5:0 Highlights



English Premier League: Manchester United vs Wigan Athletic 5:0. highlights.

Portsmouth vs Arsenal 1:4 Highlights



English Premier League: Portsmouth FC vs Arsenal FC 1:4. Match highlights.

Portsmouth vs Arsenal 1:4 Highlights



English Premier League: Portsmouth FC vs Arsenal FC 1:4. Match highlights.

Tottenham v West Ham 2:0 MOTD

Wednesday, December 30, 2009



English Premier League: Tottenham Hotspur vs West Ham United 2:0. BBC's Match of the Day highlights.

Tottenham v West Ham 2:0 MOTD



English Premier League: Tottenham Hotspur vs West Ham United 2:0. BBC's Match of the Day highlights.

Chelsea vs Fulham 2:1 MOTD



English Premier League: Chelsea FC vs Fulham FC 2:1. BBC's Match of the Day highlights

Chelsea vs Fulham 2:1 MOTD



English Premier League: Chelsea FC vs Fulham FC 2:1. BBC's Match of the Day highlights

Bolton vs Hull City 0:2 Highlights



English Premier League: Bolton Wanderers vs HulL City AFC 2:2. Highlights.

Bolton vs Hull City 0:2 Highlights



English Premier League: Bolton Wanderers vs HulL City AFC 2:2. Highlights.

Aston Villa vs Liverpool 0:1 Highlights



English Premier League: Aston Villa FC vs Liverpool FC 0:1. Match highlights

Aston Villa vs Liverpool 0:1 Highlights



English Premier League: Aston Villa FC vs Liverpool FC 0:1. Match highlights

Birmingham vs Chelsea 0:0

Monday, December 28, 2009


English Premier League: Birmingham City vs Chlesea FC 0:0

Birmingham vs Chelsea 0:0


English Premier League: Birmingham City vs Chlesea FC 0:0

Man City vs Stoke 2:0



English Premier League: Manchester City vs Stoke City 2:0

Man City vs Stoke 2:0



English Premier League: Manchester City vs Stoke City 2:0

Hull vs Manchester United 1:3 Highlights



English Premier League: Hull City AFC vs Manchester United 1.3. Highlights.

Hull vs Manchester United 1:3 Highlights



English Premier League: Hull City AFC vs Manchester United 1.3. Highlights.

Arsenal vs Aston Villa 3:0



English Premier League: Arsenal FC vs Aston Villa FC 3:0. BBC's Match of the Day highlights

Shoulder damage accounts for 24% of sports injuries

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Football and wrestling are among the sports which require complex movements of the shoulder girdle and increase the potential for injury. It’s important to be aware that rest, stretching and strengthening play a part in preventing damage Umesh Isalkar & Swati Shinde | TNN

Pune: Slap tear and shoulder dislocation are emerging as prominent injuries among sportspersons. While statistics about the exact prevalence of slap tear or shoulder dislocation is not available, sports medicine experts in the city estimate that the percentage must be between one and five per cent.

“Certain sportspersons, especially athletes, cricketers, volleyball players, javelin players etc, who do lots of throwing activity usually encounter slap tear (slap stands for superior labrum anterior to posterior) and shoulder dislocation,” said consultant shoulder and joint replacement surgeon Ashish Babhulkar who is also executive member of the education commission of Asian Federation of Sports Medicine. The most commonly injured parts of the body among sportspersons are the shoulder (24% of all injuries), he added.

While a dislocated shoulder is an obvious injury involving much pain, slap tears are more innocuous as they are very easy to miss and unless a specialist is examining the injury, it can be overlooked, said Babhulkar.

R D Dixit, president of the Sports Medicine Association, Pune branch said, “The shoulder joint has three components. It is one joint in the body which has maximum range of movement. Unlike a hip joint which is fixed in a socket, a shoulder joint is a relatively unstable joint. Hence it is more vulnerable to various injuries including shoulder dislocation. That’s the reason why shoulder dislocation is commonly seen among sports injuries, especially among rugby players, football players, wrestlers, cricketers etc.” Similarly, sports that involve jerky movements like weight-lifting, javelin throw etc. usually have to deal with slap tear as health problem, added Dixit.

“The most common wrestling movement resulting in some kind of shoulder injury is the take-down procedure. Around 68% of all injuries result from this manoeuvre among wrestlers,” said Dixit.

Elaborating on the prevailing misconceptions among sportsperson about both conditions, Babhulkar said, “Recurrent shoulder dislocations are usually considered as “almost” normal by sportspersons in between episodes of dislocation. Hence they can be quite blasé about their condition. But the fact must be underlined here that each dislocation rips out more of the ligament and damages the round head of the humerus, a long bone in the arm or forelimb that runs from the shoulder to the elbow.”

Having good flexibility is important. Sportspersons with greater ligamentous flexibility suffer from fewer shoulder injuries. “Sportsperson should work very hard to improve dynamic strength in their shoulder and knee areas, since these appear to be the two most common sites of injury in any sports (accounting for almost half of all problems). Having good flexibility also appears to be a positive, especially with regard to shoulder injury, the most common sports malady,” said Sharangpani.

For both shoulder dislocation as well as slap tear, surgery has proved to have good results. “In the modern era and with the advent of arthroscopy - a minimally invasive procedure is used and has proven acceptable to today’s patient as he can go home the next day and resume work in five days,” said Babhulkar.

Slaps tears are graded from type I to VII. “Type I tears can be treated with rehabilitation. Such patients can be put on exercises with therabands for two weeks followed by a four-week programme at home. They can then usually resume sporting activity from a period of 6 weeks to 24 weeks, depending on their UCLA score and restoration of normal biomechanics,” said Babhulkar.

Initially, patients

are apprehensive that they will get stiffness and not regain their full range of movement. “That used to be partly true when older style ‘Putti Platt’ surgery was done or open repair was performed with several sutures. With the arthroscopic repair, in my experience, 95% of my patients regain their full stability and strength and feel vividly safe after surgery,” said Babhulkar.

“When patients were asked in a questionnaire about their experience and whether they would go in for arthroscopic surgery again, 91% replied yes. In fact almost 35 to 38 patients have undergone bilateral shoulder arthroscopy at different time intervals,” said Babhulkar.

ROAD TO RECOVERY

ADWAIT MANOHAR, FORMER RANJI PLAYER

n I was trying to field a ball while playing cricket when the shoulder snapped. I still tried to continue and bowled the next over, but my shoulder totally gave up. The doctors told me that it was a ligament tear in the arm and I got it operated on. Six months later, I was back in the field, although I had recovered by 80 per cent only. Since I had left competitive cricket by the time I recovered, it did not matter so much. I still play, but at a local level.

PARAG BINIWALE, FORMER BADMINTON PLAYER

n I was injured after a fall in 1997 and decided to get my shoulder operated on in 2002. I was asked to take complete rest for three weeks and six months later I was back in action. The injury definitely put me out of action for quite some time as I could not play at all. But, once I got my shoulder treated, it did not trouble me.

ADITYA KELKAR, MALKHAMB COACH

n I was suffering from an elbow injury and could not lift weights. It was suggested that I have some physiotherapy. I did regular exercises and so did not have to go in for surgery. Now, I am an active coach and take time off from my profession as a doctor to coach malkhamb players.

Shoulder damage accounts for 24% of sports injuries

Football and wrestling are among the sports which require complex movements of the shoulder girdle and increase the potential for injury. It’s important to be aware that rest, stretching and strengthening play a part in preventing damage Umesh Isalkar & Swati Shinde | TNN

Pune: Slap tear and shoulder dislocation are emerging as prominent injuries among sportspersons. While statistics about the exact prevalence of slap tear or shoulder dislocation is not available, sports medicine experts in the city estimate that the percentage must be between one and five per cent.

“Certain sportspersons, especially athletes, cricketers, volleyball players, javelin players etc, who do lots of throwing activity usually encounter slap tear (slap stands for superior labrum anterior to posterior) and shoulder dislocation,” said consultant shoulder and joint replacement surgeon Ashish Babhulkar who is also executive member of the education commission of Asian Federation of Sports Medicine. The most commonly injured parts of the body among sportspersons are the shoulder (24% of all injuries), he added.

While a dislocated shoulder is an obvious injury involving much pain, slap tears are more innocuous as they are very easy to miss and unless a specialist is examining the injury, it can be overlooked, said Babhulkar.

R D Dixit, president of the Sports Medicine Association, Pune branch said, “The shoulder joint has three components. It is one joint in the body which has maximum range of movement. Unlike a hip joint which is fixed in a socket, a shoulder joint is a relatively unstable joint. Hence it is more vulnerable to various injuries including shoulder dislocation. That’s the reason why shoulder dislocation is commonly seen among sports injuries, especially among rugby players, football players, wrestlers, cricketers etc.” Similarly, sports that involve jerky movements like weight-lifting, javelin throw etc. usually have to deal with slap tear as health problem, added Dixit.

“The most common wrestling movement resulting in some kind of shoulder injury is the take-down procedure. Around 68% of all injuries result from this manoeuvre among wrestlers,” said Dixit.

Elaborating on the prevailing misconceptions among sportsperson about both conditions, Babhulkar said, “Recurrent shoulder dislocations are usually considered as “almost” normal by sportspersons in between episodes of dislocation. Hence they can be quite blasé about their condition. But the fact must be underlined here that each dislocation rips out more of the ligament and damages the round head of the humerus, a long bone in the arm or forelimb that runs from the shoulder to the elbow.”

Having good flexibility is important. Sportspersons with greater ligamentous flexibility suffer from fewer shoulder injuries. “Sportsperson should work very hard to improve dynamic strength in their shoulder and knee areas, since these appear to be the two most common sites of injury in any sports (accounting for almost half of all problems). Having good flexibility also appears to be a positive, especially with regard to shoulder injury, the most common sports malady,” said Sharangpani.

For both shoulder dislocation as well as slap tear, surgery has proved to have good results. “In the modern era and with the advent of arthroscopy - a minimally invasive procedure is used and has proven acceptable to today’s patient as he can go home the next day and resume work in five days,” said Babhulkar.

Slaps tears are graded from type I to VII. “Type I tears can be treated with rehabilitation. Such patients can be put on exercises with therabands for two weeks followed by a four-week programme at home. They can then usually resume sporting activity from a period of 6 weeks to 24 weeks, depending on their UCLA score and restoration of normal biomechanics,” said Babhulkar.

Initially, patients

are apprehensive that they will get stiffness and not regain their full range of movement. “That used to be partly true when older style ‘Putti Platt’ surgery was done or open repair was performed with several sutures. With the arthroscopic repair, in my experience, 95% of my patients regain their full stability and strength and feel vividly safe after surgery,” said Babhulkar.

“When patients were asked in a questionnaire about their experience and whether they would go in for arthroscopic surgery again, 91% replied yes. In fact almost 35 to 38 patients have undergone bilateral shoulder arthroscopy at different time intervals,” said Babhulkar.

ROAD TO RECOVERY

ADWAIT MANOHAR, FORMER RANJI PLAYER

n I was trying to field a ball while playing cricket when the shoulder snapped. I still tried to continue and bowled the next over, but my shoulder totally gave up. The doctors told me that it was a ligament tear in the arm and I got it operated on. Six months later, I was back in the field, although I had recovered by 80 per cent only. Since I had left competitive cricket by the time I recovered, it did not matter so much. I still play, but at a local level.

PARAG BINIWALE, FORMER BADMINTON PLAYER

n I was injured after a fall in 1997 and decided to get my shoulder operated on in 2002. I was asked to take complete rest for three weeks and six months later I was back in action. The injury definitely put me out of action for quite some time as I could not play at all. But, once I got my shoulder treated, it did not trouble me.

ADITYA KELKAR, MALKHAMB COACH

n I was suffering from an elbow injury and could not lift weights. It was suggested that I have some physiotherapy. I did regular exercises and so did not have to go in for surgery. Now, I am an active coach and take time off from my profession as a doctor to coach malkhamb players.

FIFA World Player of the Year, Lionel Messi

Tuesday, December 22, 2009






Lionel Messi's coronation as the FIFA World Player of the Year has been praised by his fellow-professionals, as the Argentine playmaker was handed his award at a star-studded gala ceremony in Zurich, Switzerland.

The Barcelona star won three times as many votes as second-placed Cristiano Ronaldo, the 2008 winner, from the coaches and captains of men's and women's national teams -- completing a stunning year for the 22-year-old.

"Messi is an incredible player," Chelsea and England captain John Terry told CNN. "He is an absolute nightmare to play against -- so thankfully I don't have to play against him very often.

"He really has got some amazing ability and there are only a couple of players in the world who can do the things that Messi does.

"Good luck to him on the award, he deserves it."
"Messi is an absolute nightmare to play against -- so thankfully I don't have to play against him very often.
--John Terry

Liverpool midfielder Steven Gerrard, who like England compatriot Terry was named in the FIFA World XI for 2009, also believes Messi was a worthy winner.

"He certainly got my vote. Messi is a genius, a magician on the pitch who can do special things with a football. He deserves the award and I am very pleased for him.

"On current form, over the past 12 months, he is certainly a worthy winner."

Former French international David Ginola, like Messi a player who could do magical things with a football, also believes the Argentine was a worthy winner.

Speaking exclusively to CNN, Ginola said: "Messi has been the top player of 2009. He really is a player that you want to pay money to go and watch.

"He has so many talents, so many qualities and every time I have seen Barcelona play, he has been a delight to watch.

"When Messi gets the ball you expect him to do something special and he deserves the award as he is always providing something special on the pitch.

"It is a dream to watch a player like him, so thank god in the 21st century we have a player like him who can deliver such quality."

FIFA World Player of the Year, Lionel Messi






Lionel Messi's coronation as the FIFA World Player of the Year has been praised by his fellow-professionals, as the Argentine playmaker was handed his award at a star-studded gala ceremony in Zurich, Switzerland.

The Barcelona star won three times as many votes as second-placed Cristiano Ronaldo, the 2008 winner, from the coaches and captains of men's and women's national teams -- completing a stunning year for the 22-year-old.

"Messi is an incredible player," Chelsea and England captain John Terry told CNN. "He is an absolute nightmare to play against -- so thankfully I don't have to play against him very often.

"He really has got some amazing ability and there are only a couple of players in the world who can do the things that Messi does.

"Good luck to him on the award, he deserves it."
"Messi is an absolute nightmare to play against -- so thankfully I don't have to play against him very often.
--John Terry

Liverpool midfielder Steven Gerrard, who like England compatriot Terry was named in the FIFA World XI for 2009, also believes Messi was a worthy winner.

"He certainly got my vote. Messi is a genius, a magician on the pitch who can do special things with a football. He deserves the award and I am very pleased for him.

"On current form, over the past 12 months, he is certainly a worthy winner."

Former French international David Ginola, like Messi a player who could do magical things with a football, also believes the Argentine was a worthy winner.

Speaking exclusively to CNN, Ginola said: "Messi has been the top player of 2009. He really is a player that you want to pay money to go and watch.

"He has so many talents, so many qualities and every time I have seen Barcelona play, he has been a delight to watch.

"When Messi gets the ball you expect him to do something special and he deserves the award as he is always providing something special on the pitch.

"It is a dream to watch a player like him, so thank god in the 21st century we have a player like him who can deliver such quality."

Man City vs Sunderland 4:3

Monday, December 21, 2009



English Premier League: Manchester City vs Sunderland AFC 4:3

Man City vs Sunderland 4:3



English Premier League: Manchester City vs Sunderland AFC 4:3

Barcelona vs Estudiantes 2:1 Highlights



FIFA Club World Cup: FC Barcelona vs Estudianted de La Plata 2:1. Match highlights

Barcelona vs Estudiantes 2:1 Highlights



FIFA Club World Cup: FC Barcelona vs Estudianted de La Plata 2:1. Match highlights

Juventus vs Catania 1:2 Highlights



Italian Serie A: Juventus FC vs Catania Calcio 1:2. Match highlights.

Juventus vs Catania 1:2 Highlights



Italian Serie A: Juventus FC vs Catania Calcio 1:2. Match highlights.

Everton vs Birmingham 1:1



English Premier League: Everton FC vs Birmingham City 1:1

Everton vs Birmingham 1:1



English Premier League: Everton FC vs Birmingham City 1:1

West Ham vs Chelsea 1:1



English Premier League: West Ham United vs Chelsea FC 1:1. BBC's Match of the Day highlights.

West Ham vs Chelsea 1:1



English Premier League: West Ham United vs Chelsea FC 1:1. BBC's Match of the Day highlights.

Arsenal vs Hull 3:0



English Premier League: Arsenal FC vs Hull City AFC 3:0. BBC's Match of the Day highlights.

Arsenal vs Hull 3:0



English Premier League: Arsenal FC vs Hull City AFC 3:0. BBC's Match of the Day highlights.

Portsmouth vs Liverpool 2:0 MOTD



English Premier League: Portsmouth FC vs Liverpool FC 2:0

Portsmouth vs Liverpool 2:0 MOTD



English Premier League: Portsmouth FC vs Liverpool FC 2:0

Real Madrid vs Zaragoza 6:0 Highlights



Spain, Liga BBVA: Real Madrid vs Real Zaragoza 6:0. Match highlights

Real Madrid vs Zaragoza 6:0 Highlights



Spain, Liga BBVA: Real Madrid vs Real Zaragoza 6:0. Match highlights

Fulham v Man United 3:0



English Premier League: Fulham FC vs Manchester United 3:0. BBC's Match of the Day highlights

Fulham v Man United 3:0



English Premier League: Fulham FC vs Manchester United 3:0. BBC's Match of the Day highlights

Burnley vs Arsenal 1:1 Highlights

Friday, December 18, 2009




English Premier League: Burnley FC vs Arsenal FC 1:1. Highlights

Burnley vs Arsenal 1:1 Highlights




English Premier League: Burnley FC vs Arsenal FC 1:1. Highlights

Tottenham vs Man City 3:0 MOTD



English Premier League: Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester City 3:0. BBC's Match of the Day extended highlights.

Tottenham vs Man City 3:0 MOTD



English Premier League: Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester City 3:0. BBC's Match of the Day extended highlights.

Atalanta vs Inter 1:1 Highlights

Sunday, December 13, 2009



Italian Serie A: Atalanta Bergamo vs Inter Milan 1:1. Highlights.

Atalanta vs Inter 1:1 Highlights



Italian Serie A: Atalanta Bergamo vs Inter Milan 1:1. Highlights.

Blanc not interested in French job

Blanc not interested in French job


Bordeaux coach Laurent Blanc admits he is flattered to be linked to the France post but insists he is not giving the idea any thought.

Reports in France suggest the French Football Federation have earmarked Blanc to replace the unpopular Raymond Domenech when his contract runs out after the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™.

The France legend, who won the FIFA World Cup as a player, claims he is not thinking about that possibility. "It's always pleasing, always gratifying to know that you are being thought of to be the coach of a team," he said. "After, I am the only one to know what reflection I could have.
There is a season to do, matches to win, a winter break that's coming up and God knows I need it," he went on. "My focus is going nowhere but there.
Bordeaux boss Laurent Blanc

"Leave me to focus myself on Bordeaux because there is a season to do, matches to win, a winter break that's coming up and God knows I need it," he went on. "My focus is going nowhere but there."

Blanc has had a stunning start to his managerial career, leading Bordeaux to second spot in Ligue 1 in his first year in charge before going one better and breaking Lyon's seven-year stranglehold on the title last season.

The 44-year-old is continuing to impress as Les Girondins topped their UEFA Champions League group which included Juventus and Bayern Munich. Blanc reportedly has a clause in his contract which allows him to leave should a national team or one of Europe's elite come calling.

Blanc not interested in French job

Blanc not interested in French job


Bordeaux coach Laurent Blanc admits he is flattered to be linked to the France post but insists he is not giving the idea any thought.

Reports in France suggest the French Football Federation have earmarked Blanc to replace the unpopular Raymond Domenech when his contract runs out after the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™.

The France legend, who won the FIFA World Cup as a player, claims he is not thinking about that possibility. "It's always pleasing, always gratifying to know that you are being thought of to be the coach of a team," he said. "After, I am the only one to know what reflection I could have.
There is a season to do, matches to win, a winter break that's coming up and God knows I need it," he went on. "My focus is going nowhere but there.
Bordeaux boss Laurent Blanc

"Leave me to focus myself on Bordeaux because there is a season to do, matches to win, a winter break that's coming up and God knows I need it," he went on. "My focus is going nowhere but there."

Blanc has had a stunning start to his managerial career, leading Bordeaux to second spot in Ligue 1 in his first year in charge before going one better and breaking Lyon's seven-year stranglehold on the title last season.

The 44-year-old is continuing to impress as Les Girondins topped their UEFA Champions League group which included Juventus and Bayern Munich. Blanc reportedly has a clause in his contract which allows him to leave should a national team or one of Europe's elite come calling.

Chile, Chilean National Soccer Team, Chilean National Football Team

Chile's recent renaissance has been capped by a return to the FIFA World Cup™ finals following a 12-year absence. In the international wilderness since France 1998, when Marcelo Salas and Ivan Zamorano showcased their consummate finishing skills, La Roja believe they have the resources to emulate their illustrious predecessors and advance beyond the group phase.

Coached by the experienced Argentinian Marcelo Bielsa, the Chileans qualified for the finals with some ease, atoning for poor performances in the qualifying competitions for Korea/Japan 2002 and Germany 2006, when they finished ninth and seventh respectively. And having finally found talented replacements to fill the void left by the Za-Sa partnership, hopes are high that they can go on and excel themselves in South Africa.

The road to South Africa
Bielsa's side, which boasts the youngest average age of all the South American teams, finished second in the continental qualifying group, just one point behind Brazil. That performance, their best since the group format was introduced, was rounded off in style with a spectacular 4-2 win in Colombia in October, a result that rubber-stamped their return to the world elite with one game remaining.

In total, La Roja would win 16 of their 33 points away from Santiago, an impressive statistic that underlines the resolve of the team.
Raising expectations further is the fact that the attack-minded Chileans ended the group as the second-highest scorers with 32 goals, including ten from top marksman Humberto Suazo, and recorded ten wins in all, more than any of their continental rivals.

The star players
As you might expect of a compact side that likes to get forward at every opportunity, Chile's star performers are to be found in advanced positions. Leading the line with distinction are Matias Fernandez, Alexis Sanchez and Humberto Suazo, three players who teamed up to great effect for domestic giants Colo Colo in 2006 and who have since gone their separate ways.

The scheming Fernandez and the explosively talented Sanchez form part of a new breed of Chilean footballer anxious to build reputations abroad, while the more experienced Suazo is a lethal finisher with a happy knack for appearing in the right place at the right time.

The coach
Marcelo Bielsa was the man in charge of Argentina's ill-fated bid for glory at the FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan 2002. While memories of La Albiceleste's shock first-round exit in the Orient linger, Bielsa has given himself a shot at redemption by engineering Chile's unlikely revival.

Nicknamed El Loco (The Madman) for his unique dedication to the game, the 54-year-old strategist enjoyed only a brief playing career but commands the respect of players, fellow coaches and reporters alike. The hard-working and principled Bielsa is a devoted student of tactics and an advocate of enterprising football, characteristics that have earned him huge popularity in his adopted homeland, where the fans are anxious for him to remain in the post for many years to come.

Previous FIFA World Cups
- Chile will be taking part in the FIFA World Cup finals for the eighth time at South Africa 2010.
- Their best performance to date came when they hosted the tournament in 1962 and finished third.

Records
- Guillermo Subiabre (1930), Leonel Ramirez (1962) and Marcelo Salas (1998) are Chile's top scorers in the finals with four goals apiece.

What they said
"I'm not looking at this as a chance to get revenge for what happened to me in 2002. Nothing I can ever achieve in the future will make that sadness go away. The most important thing at a World Cup is to make sure the players are in top form and that depends on so many different factors. Some of them you can control, but some are the result of everything the player has been through in the previous ten months. I hope everything comes together for Chile." Coach Marcelo Bielsa

Chile, Chilean National Soccer Team, Chilean National Football Team

Chile's recent renaissance has been capped by a return to the FIFA World Cup™ finals following a 12-year absence. In the international wilderness since France 1998, when Marcelo Salas and Ivan Zamorano showcased their consummate finishing skills, La Roja believe they have the resources to emulate their illustrious predecessors and advance beyond the group phase.

Coached by the experienced Argentinian Marcelo Bielsa, the Chileans qualified for the finals with some ease, atoning for poor performances in the qualifying competitions for Korea/Japan 2002 and Germany 2006, when they finished ninth and seventh respectively. And having finally found talented replacements to fill the void left by the Za-Sa partnership, hopes are high that they can go on and excel themselves in South Africa.

The road to South Africa
Bielsa's side, which boasts the youngest average age of all the South American teams, finished second in the continental qualifying group, just one point behind Brazil. That performance, their best since the group format was introduced, was rounded off in style with a spectacular 4-2 win in Colombia in October, a result that rubber-stamped their return to the world elite with one game remaining.

In total, La Roja would win 16 of their 33 points away from Santiago, an impressive statistic that underlines the resolve of the team.
Raising expectations further is the fact that the attack-minded Chileans ended the group as the second-highest scorers with 32 goals, including ten from top marksman Humberto Suazo, and recorded ten wins in all, more than any of their continental rivals.

The star players
As you might expect of a compact side that likes to get forward at every opportunity, Chile's star performers are to be found in advanced positions. Leading the line with distinction are Matias Fernandez, Alexis Sanchez and Humberto Suazo, three players who teamed up to great effect for domestic giants Colo Colo in 2006 and who have since gone their separate ways.

The scheming Fernandez and the explosively talented Sanchez form part of a new breed of Chilean footballer anxious to build reputations abroad, while the more experienced Suazo is a lethal finisher with a happy knack for appearing in the right place at the right time.

The coach
Marcelo Bielsa was the man in charge of Argentina's ill-fated bid for glory at the FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan 2002. While memories of La Albiceleste's shock first-round exit in the Orient linger, Bielsa has given himself a shot at redemption by engineering Chile's unlikely revival.

Nicknamed El Loco (The Madman) for his unique dedication to the game, the 54-year-old strategist enjoyed only a brief playing career but commands the respect of players, fellow coaches and reporters alike. The hard-working and principled Bielsa is a devoted student of tactics and an advocate of enterprising football, characteristics that have earned him huge popularity in his adopted homeland, where the fans are anxious for him to remain in the post for many years to come.

Previous FIFA World Cups
- Chile will be taking part in the FIFA World Cup finals for the eighth time at South Africa 2010.
- Their best performance to date came when they hosted the tournament in 1962 and finished third.

Records
- Guillermo Subiabre (1930), Leonel Ramirez (1962) and Marcelo Salas (1998) are Chile's top scorers in the finals with four goals apiece.

What they said
"I'm not looking at this as a chance to get revenge for what happened to me in 2002. Nothing I can ever achieve in the future will make that sadness go away. The most important thing at a World Cup is to make sure the players are in top form and that depends on so many different factors. Some of them you can control, but some are the result of everything the player has been through in the previous ten months. I hope everything comes together for Chile." Coach Marcelo Bielsa

Honduras, Honduras National Soccer Team, Honduras National Football Team,

Honduras reached the finals of the FIFA World Cup™ for only the second time in dramatic fashion, an equaliser in the dying seconds of the USA's clash with Costa Rica triggering frantic celebrations from Los Catrachos' fans thousands of miles further south. Yet despite having squeezed into the finals, coach Reinaldo Rueda's talented team will not be going to South Africa just to make up the numbers.

The road to South Africa
Rueda's men dug deep from the off to oust Puerto Rico 6-2 on aggregate to progress to the penultimate round of North, Central America and Caribbean Zone qualifying. Once there they successfully negotiated a tricky section to qualifying for the final six-team Hexagonal round ahead of Mexico, Jamaica and Canada.

The decisive final phase could barely have got off to a worse start, however, with La Bicolor sinking to a 2-0 reverse away to fierce rivals Costa Rica. A 1-1 draw in Trinidad and Tobago and a 3-1 home win over mighty Mexico got their bid back on track, only for Honduras to suffer a narrow 2-1 defeat in the United States. A run which included wins over El Salvador (1-0), Costa Rica (4-0) and Trinidad and Tobago (4-1) and a 1-0 reverse on Mexican soil then gave Los Catrachos the opportunity to clinch their passage to South Africa in the penultimate round of qualifying against the USA.

Wasteful finishing and a resilient Stars and Stripes display contributed to a 3-2 reverse in San Pedro Sula, which meant that Honduras now had to win their final match in El Salvador and hope for a favourable result between United States-Costa Rica. And despite having clinched a 1-0 win in San Salvador, the Hondurans would have missed out on direct qualification had it not been for that last-gasp American equaliser.

The star players
Over and above the country's big-name stars plying their trade in the European game, Los Catrachos' key man in qualifying was evergreen 36-year-old forward Carlos Pavon. In typically clinical fashion, it was the well-travelled goalgetter who fired his side's winner in El Salvador to ensure their place at the African showpiece. Aided and abetted by the hugely talented David Suazo, Wilson Palacios, Julio Leon and Amado Guevara, Pavon would love nothing more than to crown his glorious international career with a goal-laden showing on the biggest stage of all.

The coach
For Honduras, qualifying phases for the FIFA World Cup qualifying had become something of a recurring nightmare. Always among the pre-event favourites, La Bicolor invariably contrived to fall short at key moments - that is until the arrival of 42-year-old Colombian strategist Rueda.

After taking the job in early 2007, his professionalism struck a chord with the powers that be in Honduran football, who gave him the time to work denied many of his predecessors. Rueda repaid that faith by guiding his adopted country to South Africa 2010 on the back of sparkling attacking football and a solid backline.

Previous FIFA World Cups
• Honduras return to global football's top table after 28 years away. Their only previous appearance at the finals came at Spain 1982.
• Under the watchful eye of then coach Jose de la Paz, Los Catrachos surprised the world by drawing 1-1 with the hosts and then with Northern Ireland, before exiting the tournament after conceding a late goal in a 1-0 defeat by the former Yugoslavia.
• On the scoresheet for Honduras at that FIFA World Cup were Hector Zelaya and Antonio Laing, against Spain and Northern Ireland respectively.

Records
• Prior to the 3-2 defeat by the United States in San Pedro Sula, Honduras had racked up an eight-game unbeaten home run in South Africa 2010 qualifying.
• Honduras conceded just 11 goals in the final Hexagonal, the best defensive record in the section.
• Veteran sharpshooter Pavon was Los Catrachos' most prolific scorer in qualifying, helping himself to an impressive seven goals in nine appearances.

What they said
"Nobody could believe it. Our game ended and we were all dejected, then we saw the row the fans were making and we realised that the USA had equalised against Costa Rica. We're so happy to be going to South Africa and we're not going to let down all those people who believed in us." Honduras striker Carlos Pavon after his team booked their passage to the 2010 showpiece.

Honduras, Honduras National Soccer Team, Honduras National Football Team,

Honduras reached the finals of the FIFA World Cup™ for only the second time in dramatic fashion, an equaliser in the dying seconds of the USA's clash with Costa Rica triggering frantic celebrations from Los Catrachos' fans thousands of miles further south. Yet despite having squeezed into the finals, coach Reinaldo Rueda's talented team will not be going to South Africa just to make up the numbers.

The road to South Africa
Rueda's men dug deep from the off to oust Puerto Rico 6-2 on aggregate to progress to the penultimate round of North, Central America and Caribbean Zone qualifying. Once there they successfully negotiated a tricky section to qualifying for the final six-team Hexagonal round ahead of Mexico, Jamaica and Canada.

The decisive final phase could barely have got off to a worse start, however, with La Bicolor sinking to a 2-0 reverse away to fierce rivals Costa Rica. A 1-1 draw in Trinidad and Tobago and a 3-1 home win over mighty Mexico got their bid back on track, only for Honduras to suffer a narrow 2-1 defeat in the United States. A run which included wins over El Salvador (1-0), Costa Rica (4-0) and Trinidad and Tobago (4-1) and a 1-0 reverse on Mexican soil then gave Los Catrachos the opportunity to clinch their passage to South Africa in the penultimate round of qualifying against the USA.

Wasteful finishing and a resilient Stars and Stripes display contributed to a 3-2 reverse in San Pedro Sula, which meant that Honduras now had to win their final match in El Salvador and hope for a favourable result between United States-Costa Rica. And despite having clinched a 1-0 win in San Salvador, the Hondurans would have missed out on direct qualification had it not been for that last-gasp American equaliser.

The star players
Over and above the country's big-name stars plying their trade in the European game, Los Catrachos' key man in qualifying was evergreen 36-year-old forward Carlos Pavon. In typically clinical fashion, it was the well-travelled goalgetter who fired his side's winner in El Salvador to ensure their place at the African showpiece. Aided and abetted by the hugely talented David Suazo, Wilson Palacios, Julio Leon and Amado Guevara, Pavon would love nothing more than to crown his glorious international career with a goal-laden showing on the biggest stage of all.

The coach
For Honduras, qualifying phases for the FIFA World Cup qualifying had become something of a recurring nightmare. Always among the pre-event favourites, La Bicolor invariably contrived to fall short at key moments - that is until the arrival of 42-year-old Colombian strategist Rueda.

After taking the job in early 2007, his professionalism struck a chord with the powers that be in Honduran football, who gave him the time to work denied many of his predecessors. Rueda repaid that faith by guiding his adopted country to South Africa 2010 on the back of sparkling attacking football and a solid backline.

Previous FIFA World Cups
• Honduras return to global football's top table after 28 years away. Their only previous appearance at the finals came at Spain 1982.
• Under the watchful eye of then coach Jose de la Paz, Los Catrachos surprised the world by drawing 1-1 with the hosts and then with Northern Ireland, before exiting the tournament after conceding a late goal in a 1-0 defeat by the former Yugoslavia.
• On the scoresheet for Honduras at that FIFA World Cup were Hector Zelaya and Antonio Laing, against Spain and Northern Ireland respectively.

Records
• Prior to the 3-2 defeat by the United States in San Pedro Sula, Honduras had racked up an eight-game unbeaten home run in South Africa 2010 qualifying.
• Honduras conceded just 11 goals in the final Hexagonal, the best defensive record in the section.
• Veteran sharpshooter Pavon was Los Catrachos' most prolific scorer in qualifying, helping himself to an impressive seven goals in nine appearances.

What they said
"Nobody could believe it. Our game ended and we were all dejected, then we saw the row the fans were making and we realised that the USA had equalised against Costa Rica. We're so happy to be going to South Africa and we're not going to let down all those people who believed in us." Honduras striker Carlos Pavon after his team booked their passage to the 2010 showpiece.

Switzerland, Swiss National Soccer Team, Swiss National Football Team

Switzerland will be appearing at the FIFA World Cup™ finals for the ninth time when next summer's tournament gets underway in South Africa, where coach Ottmar Hitzfeld and his men are aiming for more than just a supporting role.

The former Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich boss took the national helm after Switzerland's disappointing showing at UEFA EURO 2008, and has now led them to their second FIFA World Cup finals in a row. The Swiss made it to the Round of 16 at the 2006 event in Germany, where they were unluckily eliminated on penalties by Ukraine.

The Swiss boast a healthy blend of youth and experience, combining talented younger players such as Eren Derdiyok, Tranquillo Barnetta and keeper Diego Benaglio with seasoned campaigners like Alexander Frei and Blaise N'Kufo. The current team is hoping at least to emulate the achievements of their forebears who made the last eight in 1934, 1938 and 1954.

The road to South Africa
Hitzfeld and his team made a distinctly inauspicious start on the road to the 2010 finals. After conceding in the final minute to draw away to Israel, a disastrous 2-1 defeat to minnows Luxembourg in Zurich brought shame and embarrassment on the team.

However, the cringeworthy defeat ultimately acted as a wake-up call, and the Swiss duly reeled off five wins on the spin, against Latvia (2-1), Greece (2-1 and 2-0) and Moldova (2-0 and 2-0). They only dropped points again in a 2-2 draw away to the Latvians.

A comfortable 3-0 revenge victory in Luxembourg and a goalless draw with Israel in front of a delirious Basel crowd sealed top spot in European Group 2 and a confirmed place in South Africa for Frei and company.

The star players
Alexander Frei is the undisputed chief on and off the field of play. The Basel striker, who is his country's all-time record goalscorer, was Hitzfeld's natural choice as national team captain. He finished the qualifying campaign on five goals.

That total was equalled by Blaise N'Kufo of Twente Enschede. The striker, who was born in Kinshasa (DR Congo), was first called up by the Swiss in 2000 and has struck up a productive attacking partnership with Frei.

The coach
Ottmar Hitzfeld is one of Europe's most highly regarded and most successful senior coaches. He is one of only two men to guide two different clubs to UEFA Champions League glory (Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich).

He became Switzerland head coach on 1 July 2008, and after a bumpy settling-in period, led his team to a direct qualifying berth for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The former Germany amateur international, who appeared at the 1972 Olympic Games, is no stranger to Switzerland after spending spells with Basel (1971-75), Lugano (1978-80) and Lucerne (1980-83) in his playing days.

Previous FIFA World Cups
- In South Africa, Switzerland will be appearing at the FIFA World Cup for the ninth time.

- The Swiss reached the quarter-finals in 1934, 1938 and 1954. They were knocked out in the Round of 16 at the 2006 finals in Germany.

The words
"If my father had known I'd be this successful as Switzerland coach - not as Bayern Munich or Borussia Dortmund coach - he'd have been overjoyed. It's the place we call home, you see." Ottmar Hitzfeld, Switzerland coach

Switzerland, Swiss National Soccer Team, Swiss National Football Team

Switzerland will be appearing at the FIFA World Cup™ finals for the ninth time when next summer's tournament gets underway in South Africa, where coach Ottmar Hitzfeld and his men are aiming for more than just a supporting role.

The former Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich boss took the national helm after Switzerland's disappointing showing at UEFA EURO 2008, and has now led them to their second FIFA World Cup finals in a row. The Swiss made it to the Round of 16 at the 2006 event in Germany, where they were unluckily eliminated on penalties by Ukraine.

The Swiss boast a healthy blend of youth and experience, combining talented younger players such as Eren Derdiyok, Tranquillo Barnetta and keeper Diego Benaglio with seasoned campaigners like Alexander Frei and Blaise N'Kufo. The current team is hoping at least to emulate the achievements of their forebears who made the last eight in 1934, 1938 and 1954.

The road to South Africa
Hitzfeld and his team made a distinctly inauspicious start on the road to the 2010 finals. After conceding in the final minute to draw away to Israel, a disastrous 2-1 defeat to minnows Luxembourg in Zurich brought shame and embarrassment on the team.

However, the cringeworthy defeat ultimately acted as a wake-up call, and the Swiss duly reeled off five wins on the spin, against Latvia (2-1), Greece (2-1 and 2-0) and Moldova (2-0 and 2-0). They only dropped points again in a 2-2 draw away to the Latvians.

A comfortable 3-0 revenge victory in Luxembourg and a goalless draw with Israel in front of a delirious Basel crowd sealed top spot in European Group 2 and a confirmed place in South Africa for Frei and company.

The star players
Alexander Frei is the undisputed chief on and off the field of play. The Basel striker, who is his country's all-time record goalscorer, was Hitzfeld's natural choice as national team captain. He finished the qualifying campaign on five goals.

That total was equalled by Blaise N'Kufo of Twente Enschede. The striker, who was born in Kinshasa (DR Congo), was first called up by the Swiss in 2000 and has struck up a productive attacking partnership with Frei.

The coach
Ottmar Hitzfeld is one of Europe's most highly regarded and most successful senior coaches. He is one of only two men to guide two different clubs to UEFA Champions League glory (Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich).

He became Switzerland head coach on 1 July 2008, and after a bumpy settling-in period, led his team to a direct qualifying berth for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The former Germany amateur international, who appeared at the 1972 Olympic Games, is no stranger to Switzerland after spending spells with Basel (1971-75), Lugano (1978-80) and Lucerne (1980-83) in his playing days.

Previous FIFA World Cups
- In South Africa, Switzerland will be appearing at the FIFA World Cup for the ninth time.

- The Swiss reached the quarter-finals in 1934, 1938 and 1954. They were knocked out in the Round of 16 at the 2006 finals in Germany.

The words
"If my father had known I'd be this successful as Switzerland coach - not as Bayern Munich or Borussia Dortmund coach - he'd have been overjoyed. It's the place we call home, you see." Ottmar Hitzfeld, Switzerland coach

Spain, Spanish National Soccer Team, Spanish National Football Team

On a scale of one to ten, Spain's performance in qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ can only be given top marks. On top of wins in each of their ten games, La Roja were the European Zone's second top scorers with 28 goals while conceding a miserly five at the other end. Maturity, resilience and the ability to overcome adversity were all in evidence during their campaign, and few national teams in world football are blessed with squads of such depth and sheer talent. The Iberians have not rested on the laurels of their UEFA EURO 2008 victory, consistently bringing in new faces without renouncing their commitment to attractive short-passing football.

The road to South Africa
The title of European champions inevitably meant that Spain's opponents redoubled their efforts to claim what would be a notable scalp. Their narrow 1-0 win against Bosnia-Herzegovina - courtesy of a solitary strike from David Villa - was typical of the kind of gritty resistance they have had to overcome since Austria/Switzerland. And though Armenia and Estonia were dispatched relatively comfortably, an away clash in Belgium and a double-header against EURO 2008 semi-finalists Turkey forced the Spaniards to dig deep for nine valuable points.

Following a 2-1 win in Brussels, when they fought back to clinch victory via an 88th-minute Villa strike, came a 1-0 success over Turkey in Madrid, the goal coming from Gerard Pique. The return in Istanbul marked another 2-1 comeback triumph courtesy of goals from Xabi Alonso and then Liverpool team-mate Albert Riera. Belgium were subsequently dispatched 5-0 in La Coruna and a ticket to South Africa 2010 was assured with two rounds to spare after a comfortable 3-0 home win over Estonia. Far from taking their foot off the pedal, La Selección capped a flawless campaign with victory in Armenia and a 5-2 away thrashing of closest challengers Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The star players
The team's success has been based on quality and balance throughout the side. In captain Iker Casillas Spain have one of the world's finest keepers, a man who can be relied upon to bring his superhuman reflexes to the rescue when most needed. Midfield string-puller Xavi Hernandez's inch-perfect passing and vision is vital to the Spaniards' fluid style, while at the sharp end of the attack there can be few if any better finishers than David Villa and Fernando 'El Niño' Torres.

The coach
Vicente del Bosque took over where Luis Aragones left off after the EURO 2008 triumph, keeping the same footballing philosophy and core of players which dazzled the continent that summer. The experienced supremo has also hit the heights at club level with Real Madrid, winning two UEFA Champions Leagues (2000, 2002), two La Ligas (2001, 2003), a Spanish Super Cup (2001) a UEFA European Super Cup (2002) and the Toyota Intercontinental Cup (2002).

Del Bosque continued Aragones' faith in the one-touch style that has traditionally characterised Spain's play and which relies upon midfielders of the highest quality. As a recult, the Spaniards have won every game but one since the former Los Blancos boss took charge, the exception being a semi-final reverse against USA at the FIFA Confederations Cup 2009.

Previous FIFA World Cups
- Spain have taken part in the finals of 12 FIFA World Cups and have not missed a single edition since failing to reach Germany 1974.
- La Roja's best performance at the global showpiece was a fourth-placed finish at Brazil 1950.
- At senior international level, Spain have two major titles to their name: the 1964 and 2008 European Championships.

Records
- Spain recorded ten wins from ten South Africa 2010 qualifiers.
- La Selección were the European Zone's second-highest scorers, firing 28 goals to end the campaign just six strikes short of the Fabio Capello's England.

The words
"We've got good players and a well-oiled team, but there are some very strong sides out there. Our aim is to challenge for the next World Cup but we know how difficult it is. We're not the favourites but we are among the hopefuls." Vicente del Bosque, Spain coach.

Spain, Spanish National Soccer Team, Spanish National Football Team

On a scale of one to ten, Spain's performance in qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ can only be given top marks. On top of wins in each of their ten games, La Roja were the European Zone's second top scorers with 28 goals while conceding a miserly five at the other end. Maturity, resilience and the ability to overcome adversity were all in evidence during their campaign, and few national teams in world football are blessed with squads of such depth and sheer talent. The Iberians have not rested on the laurels of their UEFA EURO 2008 victory, consistently bringing in new faces without renouncing their commitment to attractive short-passing football.

The road to South Africa
The title of European champions inevitably meant that Spain's opponents redoubled their efforts to claim what would be a notable scalp. Their narrow 1-0 win against Bosnia-Herzegovina - courtesy of a solitary strike from David Villa - was typical of the kind of gritty resistance they have had to overcome since Austria/Switzerland. And though Armenia and Estonia were dispatched relatively comfortably, an away clash in Belgium and a double-header against EURO 2008 semi-finalists Turkey forced the Spaniards to dig deep for nine valuable points.

Following a 2-1 win in Brussels, when they fought back to clinch victory via an 88th-minute Villa strike, came a 1-0 success over Turkey in Madrid, the goal coming from Gerard Pique. The return in Istanbul marked another 2-1 comeback triumph courtesy of goals from Xabi Alonso and then Liverpool team-mate Albert Riera. Belgium were subsequently dispatched 5-0 in La Coruna and a ticket to South Africa 2010 was assured with two rounds to spare after a comfortable 3-0 home win over Estonia. Far from taking their foot off the pedal, La Selección capped a flawless campaign with victory in Armenia and a 5-2 away thrashing of closest challengers Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The star players
The team's success has been based on quality and balance throughout the side. In captain Iker Casillas Spain have one of the world's finest keepers, a man who can be relied upon to bring his superhuman reflexes to the rescue when most needed. Midfield string-puller Xavi Hernandez's inch-perfect passing and vision is vital to the Spaniards' fluid style, while at the sharp end of the attack there can be few if any better finishers than David Villa and Fernando 'El Niño' Torres.

The coach
Vicente del Bosque took over where Luis Aragones left off after the EURO 2008 triumph, keeping the same footballing philosophy and core of players which dazzled the continent that summer. The experienced supremo has also hit the heights at club level with Real Madrid, winning two UEFA Champions Leagues (2000, 2002), two La Ligas (2001, 2003), a Spanish Super Cup (2001) a UEFA European Super Cup (2002) and the Toyota Intercontinental Cup (2002).

Del Bosque continued Aragones' faith in the one-touch style that has traditionally characterised Spain's play and which relies upon midfielders of the highest quality. As a recult, the Spaniards have won every game but one since the former Los Blancos boss took charge, the exception being a semi-final reverse against USA at the FIFA Confederations Cup 2009.

Previous FIFA World Cups
- Spain have taken part in the finals of 12 FIFA World Cups and have not missed a single edition since failing to reach Germany 1974.
- La Roja's best performance at the global showpiece was a fourth-placed finish at Brazil 1950.
- At senior international level, Spain have two major titles to their name: the 1964 and 2008 European Championships.

Records
- Spain recorded ten wins from ten South Africa 2010 qualifiers.
- La Selección were the European Zone's second-highest scorers, firing 28 goals to end the campaign just six strikes short of the Fabio Capello's England.

The words
"We've got good players and a well-oiled team, but there are some very strong sides out there. Our aim is to challenge for the next World Cup but we know how difficult it is. We're not the favourites but we are among the hopefuls." Vicente del Bosque, Spain coach.

Portugal, Portuguese National Soccer Team, Portuguese National FootballTeam

Finalists at UEFA EURO 2004 and semi-finalists at Germany 2006, Portugal have displayed some dazzling football in recent years, but without ever landing a major prize. Having never progressed beyond the semi-finals of a FIFA World Cup™, A Selecção das Quinas will be aiming to go all the way this time around.

Mozambican-born coach Carlos Queiroz is no stranger to South Africa, and his previous experience as the host nation’s coach could prove invaluable. With talents of players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe and Deco to call upon, Queiroz will know that expectations are sure to be high.

The road to South Africa
Recording only one win from their first five group matches, Portugal quickly went from being group favourites to standing on the cusp of elimination. The second half of qualification brought a spectacular transformation, however, and they scored eight goals without reply in their last four group qualifiers to earn a play-off spot. Despite the absence of Ronaldo, their captain and talisman, for the two-legged tie against Bosnia-Herzegovina, they won home and away to clinch a comfortable 2-0 aggregate victory.

The star players
While fans are rightly excited about the prospect of Cristiano Ronaldo’s involvement on football’s biggest stage, the 2008 FIFA World Player played a subdued role in qualification, failing score in any of his seven appearances. Nevertheless, the Real Madrid star is known for his ability to rise to the big occasion and will undoubtedly be one of the men to watch at South Africa 2010.

Yet Portugal are arguably equally as strong at the back. The aggression and aerial ability of Pepe and Bruno has proved effective at both ends of the pitch, while fellow defenders Jose Bosingwa and Ricardo Carvalho add a high work-rate and calm-footed consistency. Veteran midfield pair Simao and Deco are also expected to shine.

The coach
Having guided the likes of Luis Figo, Rui Costa and Fernando Couto to consecutive FIFA World Youth Championship titles in 1989 and 1991, Carlos Queiroz is credited as the mastermind behind Portugal’s ‘Golden Generation’.

At senior level, Queiroz enjoyed great success as assistant to Sir Alex Ferguson, with a 10-month stint in charge of Real Madrid sandwiched in-between his two spells as No2 at Manchester United. Having succeeded Luiz Felipe Scolari after EURO 2008, this is in fact Queiroz’s second term as the senior national team coach. He last coached the senior side from 1991 to 1993, a disappointing period during which he failed to lead them to either EURO 1992 or the 1994 FIFA World Cup.

Previous FIFA World Cups
Portugal set the bar incredibly high on their first FIFA World Cup appearance in 1966, walking away with a third-place finish along with a golden boot award for Eusebio. That maiden voyage remains their best performance to date on football’s biggest stage.

After failing to progress past the first stage in 1986 and 2002, Germany 2006 marked a return to FIFA World Cup form for the Portuguese. Undefeated during the group phase, they went on to overcome Netherlands and England en route to the semi-finals, only to lose 1-0 to France and then go down to the hosts in the play-off for third place. South Africa 2010 will be Portugal’s fifth FIFA World Cup appearance.

What they said
"Portugal are candidates for the trophy. We have great players and we made a statement with great pedigree and determination. This is a unique moment," Liedson after eliminating Bosnia-Herzegovina to qualify for South Africa 2010.

Portugal, Portuguese National Soccer Team, Portuguese National FootballTeam

Finalists at UEFA EURO 2004 and semi-finalists at Germany 2006, Portugal have displayed some dazzling football in recent years, but without ever landing a major prize. Having never progressed beyond the semi-finals of a FIFA World Cup™, A Selecção das Quinas will be aiming to go all the way this time around.

Mozambican-born coach Carlos Queiroz is no stranger to South Africa, and his previous experience as the host nation’s coach could prove invaluable. With talents of players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe and Deco to call upon, Queiroz will know that expectations are sure to be high.

The road to South Africa
Recording only one win from their first five group matches, Portugal quickly went from being group favourites to standing on the cusp of elimination. The second half of qualification brought a spectacular transformation, however, and they scored eight goals without reply in their last four group qualifiers to earn a play-off spot. Despite the absence of Ronaldo, their captain and talisman, for the two-legged tie against Bosnia-Herzegovina, they won home and away to clinch a comfortable 2-0 aggregate victory.

The star players
While fans are rightly excited about the prospect of Cristiano Ronaldo’s involvement on football’s biggest stage, the 2008 FIFA World Player played a subdued role in qualification, failing score in any of his seven appearances. Nevertheless, the Real Madrid star is known for his ability to rise to the big occasion and will undoubtedly be one of the men to watch at South Africa 2010.

Yet Portugal are arguably equally as strong at the back. The aggression and aerial ability of Pepe and Bruno has proved effective at both ends of the pitch, while fellow defenders Jose Bosingwa and Ricardo Carvalho add a high work-rate and calm-footed consistency. Veteran midfield pair Simao and Deco are also expected to shine.

The coach
Having guided the likes of Luis Figo, Rui Costa and Fernando Couto to consecutive FIFA World Youth Championship titles in 1989 and 1991, Carlos Queiroz is credited as the mastermind behind Portugal’s ‘Golden Generation’.

At senior level, Queiroz enjoyed great success as assistant to Sir Alex Ferguson, with a 10-month stint in charge of Real Madrid sandwiched in-between his two spells as No2 at Manchester United. Having succeeded Luiz Felipe Scolari after EURO 2008, this is in fact Queiroz’s second term as the senior national team coach. He last coached the senior side from 1991 to 1993, a disappointing period during which he failed to lead them to either EURO 1992 or the 1994 FIFA World Cup.

Previous FIFA World Cups
Portugal set the bar incredibly high on their first FIFA World Cup appearance in 1966, walking away with a third-place finish along with a golden boot award for Eusebio. That maiden voyage remains their best performance to date on football’s biggest stage.

After failing to progress past the first stage in 1986 and 2002, Germany 2006 marked a return to FIFA World Cup form for the Portuguese. Undefeated during the group phase, they went on to overcome Netherlands and England en route to the semi-finals, only to lose 1-0 to France and then go down to the hosts in the play-off for third place. South Africa 2010 will be Portugal’s fifth FIFA World Cup appearance.

What they said
"Portugal are candidates for the trophy. We have great players and we made a statement with great pedigree and determination. This is a unique moment," Liedson after eliminating Bosnia-Herzegovina to qualify for South Africa 2010.

Côte d'Ivoire, Côte d'Ivoire National Soccer Team, Côte d'Ivoire National Football Team

If an African team is to make a major impact on the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ finals in South Africa, Côte d'Ivoire are seen by many as the most likely candidates. And with world class talent throughout the starting 11, it's no wonder. Les Elephants also a point to prove after being eliminated in the first round at Germany 2006, albeit in an extremely difficult group, where they lost 2-1 to giants Argentina and the Netherlands before coming from two goals down to beat Serbia and Montenegro 3-2.

With more experience, and a little more luck in the draw, Didier Drogba and Co are certain to be a handful in attack as they look to cement their emerging pedigree on the international level at South Africa 2010.

The road to South Africa
Befitting their status as one of the continent's powerhouses, Côte d'Ivoire strode through qualifying without losing a match, running away with their final qualifying group ahead of Burkina Faso, Malawi and Guinea. There only moment of genuine uncertainty came when they were on the brink of qualifying, although - as usual - Didier Drogba responded when his team needed him. The Chelsea man's decisive 70th-minute goal at Burkina Faso gave the side just enough insurance to hold off the Stallions 3-2 in Ouagadougou, and fittingly, it was his dramatic equaliser after coming off the bench against Malawi that gave the West Africans a 1-1 draw and the point they needed to reach South Africa. All told, the Chelsea man was top scorer for Les Elephants, with six goals in five matches.

The star players
Les Elephants feature top-drawer talent throughout their side, with the Chelsea pair of Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou a formidable duo up front. Sevilla's Didier Zokora and Barcelona's Yaya Toure provide bite in midfield alongside Marseille's diminutive Bakary Kone, while the England-based pair of Emmanuel Eboue and Kolo Toure combine with Stuttgart's Arthur Boka to form one of the best defences in Africa.

The coach
A well-travelled club coach, Vahid Halilhodzic took the reins of his first national side when he assumed control of Côte d'Ivoire after the 2008 CAF African Cup of Nations. Born in Bosnia, Halilhodzic was a forward in the highly-rated Yugoslavian team that surprisingly crashed out at the group stage of the 1982 FIFA World Cup on goal difference. A large portion of his coaching career has been spent in France, including stints with Lille, Rennes and Paris St. Germain, and Halilhodzic has admitted that he would like to return to club football in the English Premier League. The Bosnians Elephants side have gone undefeated since a 1-0 friendly loss in Japan the same month he took charge.

Record

* Côte d'Ivoire were the only nation at Germany 2006 whose squad was made up of players entirely based at clubs outside their home country.
* They are the only team to never failed to score in a FIFA World Cup match.
* Côte d'Ivoire conceded early goals in all three of their 2006 matches, with all six of their goals against coming before the 40th minute.

What they said
"At the last World Cup we played really well, but we were unlucky because we were in a very tough group with Argentina and Holland and went out in the first round. But I think with this kind of experience, it will be possible at South Africa 2010 to do much better. Perhaps we can make the quarter-finals and then semi-finals; this is something we can achieve," Côte d'Ivoire striker Didier Drogba.

Côte d'Ivoire, Côte d'Ivoire National Soccer Team, Côte d'Ivoire National Football Team

If an African team is to make a major impact on the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ finals in South Africa, Côte d'Ivoire are seen by many as the most likely candidates. And with world class talent throughout the starting 11, it's no wonder. Les Elephants also a point to prove after being eliminated in the first round at Germany 2006, albeit in an extremely difficult group, where they lost 2-1 to giants Argentina and the Netherlands before coming from two goals down to beat Serbia and Montenegro 3-2.

With more experience, and a little more luck in the draw, Didier Drogba and Co are certain to be a handful in attack as they look to cement their emerging pedigree on the international level at South Africa 2010.

The road to South Africa
Befitting their status as one of the continent's powerhouses, Côte d'Ivoire strode through qualifying without losing a match, running away with their final qualifying group ahead of Burkina Faso, Malawi and Guinea. There only moment of genuine uncertainty came when they were on the brink of qualifying, although - as usual - Didier Drogba responded when his team needed him. The Chelsea man's decisive 70th-minute goal at Burkina Faso gave the side just enough insurance to hold off the Stallions 3-2 in Ouagadougou, and fittingly, it was his dramatic equaliser after coming off the bench against Malawi that gave the West Africans a 1-1 draw and the point they needed to reach South Africa. All told, the Chelsea man was top scorer for Les Elephants, with six goals in five matches.

The star players
Les Elephants feature top-drawer talent throughout their side, with the Chelsea pair of Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou a formidable duo up front. Sevilla's Didier Zokora and Barcelona's Yaya Toure provide bite in midfield alongside Marseille's diminutive Bakary Kone, while the England-based pair of Emmanuel Eboue and Kolo Toure combine with Stuttgart's Arthur Boka to form one of the best defences in Africa.

The coach
A well-travelled club coach, Vahid Halilhodzic took the reins of his first national side when he assumed control of Côte d'Ivoire after the 2008 CAF African Cup of Nations. Born in Bosnia, Halilhodzic was a forward in the highly-rated Yugoslavian team that surprisingly crashed out at the group stage of the 1982 FIFA World Cup on goal difference. A large portion of his coaching career has been spent in France, including stints with Lille, Rennes and Paris St. Germain, and Halilhodzic has admitted that he would like to return to club football in the English Premier League. The Bosnians Elephants side have gone undefeated since a 1-0 friendly loss in Japan the same month he took charge.

Record

* Côte d'Ivoire were the only nation at Germany 2006 whose squad was made up of players entirely based at clubs outside their home country.
* They are the only team to never failed to score in a FIFA World Cup match.
* Côte d'Ivoire conceded early goals in all three of their 2006 matches, with all six of their goals against coming before the 40th minute.

What they said
"At the last World Cup we played really well, but we were unlucky because we were in a very tough group with Argentina and Holland and went out in the first round. But I think with this kind of experience, it will be possible at South Africa 2010 to do much better. Perhaps we can make the quarter-finals and then semi-finals; this is something we can achieve," Côte d'Ivoire striker Didier Drogba.

Korea, Korean National Soccer Team, Korean National Football Team

Korea DPR seemingly came from nowhere to storm into the Asian Zone's final round of qualifying, where they defied sizeable odds to take one of the continent's four automatic spots at the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™. In a sense they lived up to their long-standing reputation as Asia's surprise packages, their qualifying success marking a return to world football's top table for the first time since going all the way to the last eight in 1966.

After spending nearly 30 years in wilderness, the past decade saw the revival of the nation's footballing fortunes. With their women's football teams running riot at all levels on the international scene, the men's side came close to qualifying for Germany 2006 before successfully negotiating the road to South Africa 2010.

The road to South Africa
To reach the 2010 showpiece, Korea DPR went through a gruelling qualifying campaign spanning 20 months and a whopping 16 games. They made light work of Mongolia in the Asian Zone's first qualifying round, winning both home and away to earn a bye to the third round as one of the 11 highest-ranked first-round winners. Once there, they finished second in their group behind southern neighbours Korea Republic to qualify for the final round.

There they got off to a brilliant start by defeating UAE 2-1, before holding Korea Republic to a 1-1 draw. Despite losing to Iran 2-1 in the next game, they bounced back with a 1-0 home win against Saudi Arabia. Even a 1-0 loss to Korea Republic did not dent their chances too badly, followed as it was with a draw against Iran which kept them in second place. Needing just a point against Saudi Arabia in the closing game to qualify, they bravely held on for a goalless draw to seal their passage.

The star players
Two-thirds of the squad come from domestic clubs, though their small overseas-based contingent are vital cogs in the Korean machine. FC Rostov's Hong Yong-Jo was in lethal form up front, the 27-year-old goalgetter scoring four times in as many games. Playing alongside him is Japan-based Jong Tae-Se, who has the power and pace to breach any rearguard. Home-based midfielder Mun In-Guk is the man who makes the team tick, while keeper Ri Myong-Guk's safe hands and agility can be relied upon between the sticks.

The coach
Coach Kim Jong-Hun was only ten years old when the Chollima made history at England 1966 and now, 43 years on, he was the man who guided them back to the pinnacle of world football. Given his squad largely consists of domestic-based players lacking in international experience, the strategist favours a pragmatic and defensive approach based around discipline and teamwork.

Previous FIFA World Cups
Going into the global showpiece as debutants in England in 1966, the unfancied East Asians undid European heavyweights Italy with a single-goal victory to march into the quarter-finals. In what remains one of the all-time classic encounters in FIFA World Cup history, they flew into a three-goal lead against Portugal within 25 minutes, only for Eusebio to go on to strike no fewer than four times in a 5-3 comeback win for the Selecção das Quinas.

Records

* Korea DPR reached the last eight in their last and only previous appearance at the finals of a FIFA World Cup.


What they said
"It was as a result of our hard work that we will return to the World Cup, 44 years after we reached last eight at England 1966. We are likely to meet European teams once more at South Africa 2010 and I hope we can repeat the feats of our predecessors." Korea DPR head coach Kim Jong-Hun

Korea, Korean National Soccer Team, Korean National Football Team

Korea DPR seemingly came from nowhere to storm into the Asian Zone's final round of qualifying, where they defied sizeable odds to take one of the continent's four automatic spots at the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™. In a sense they lived up to their long-standing reputation as Asia's surprise packages, their qualifying success marking a return to world football's top table for the first time since going all the way to the last eight in 1966.

After spending nearly 30 years in wilderness, the past decade saw the revival of the nation's footballing fortunes. With their women's football teams running riot at all levels on the international scene, the men's side came close to qualifying for Germany 2006 before successfully negotiating the road to South Africa 2010.

The road to South Africa
To reach the 2010 showpiece, Korea DPR went through a gruelling qualifying campaign spanning 20 months and a whopping 16 games. They made light work of Mongolia in the Asian Zone's first qualifying round, winning both home and away to earn a bye to the third round as one of the 11 highest-ranked first-round winners. Once there, they finished second in their group behind southern neighbours Korea Republic to qualify for the final round.

There they got off to a brilliant start by defeating UAE 2-1, before holding Korea Republic to a 1-1 draw. Despite losing to Iran 2-1 in the next game, they bounced back with a 1-0 home win against Saudi Arabia. Even a 1-0 loss to Korea Republic did not dent their chances too badly, followed as it was with a draw against Iran which kept them in second place. Needing just a point against Saudi Arabia in the closing game to qualify, they bravely held on for a goalless draw to seal their passage.

The star players
Two-thirds of the squad come from domestic clubs, though their small overseas-based contingent are vital cogs in the Korean machine. FC Rostov's Hong Yong-Jo was in lethal form up front, the 27-year-old goalgetter scoring four times in as many games. Playing alongside him is Japan-based Jong Tae-Se, who has the power and pace to breach any rearguard. Home-based midfielder Mun In-Guk is the man who makes the team tick, while keeper Ri Myong-Guk's safe hands and agility can be relied upon between the sticks.

The coach
Coach Kim Jong-Hun was only ten years old when the Chollima made history at England 1966 and now, 43 years on, he was the man who guided them back to the pinnacle of world football. Given his squad largely consists of domestic-based players lacking in international experience, the strategist favours a pragmatic and defensive approach based around discipline and teamwork.

Previous FIFA World Cups
Going into the global showpiece as debutants in England in 1966, the unfancied East Asians undid European heavyweights Italy with a single-goal victory to march into the quarter-finals. In what remains one of the all-time classic encounters in FIFA World Cup history, they flew into a three-goal lead against Portugal within 25 minutes, only for Eusebio to go on to strike no fewer than four times in a 5-3 comeback win for the Selecção das Quinas.

Records

* Korea DPR reached the last eight in their last and only previous appearance at the finals of a FIFA World Cup.


What they said
"It was as a result of our hard work that we will return to the World Cup, 44 years after we reached last eight at England 1966. We are likely to meet European teams once more at South Africa 2010 and I hope we can repeat the feats of our predecessors." Korea DPR head coach Kim Jong-Hun

Brazil, Brazilian National Soccer Team, Brazilian National Football Team

It almost goes without saying that Brazil, the five-times world champions, go into every FIFA World Cup™ heavily favoured to add yet another star to the legendary Amarelinha shirt. Having played for A Seleção at three editions of the global showpiece, coach Dunga will be fully aware that any outcome other than a sixth world crown will likely be considered a failure.

The road to South Africa
The fans' at times vitriolic reaction to Brazil's results and performances particularly early on in the qualifying phase illustrates just how demanding they can be. Despite ending the preliminary event on top of the standings, after recording nine wins, seven draws and two defeats, and having clinched a South Africa 2010 berth with three matchdays to spare, the Auriverde camp had been subjected to a torrent of abuse after successive goalless home draws against Argentina, Bolivia and Colombia. Dunga's charges really hit their stride from April 2009, however, racking up five wins in a row including two landmark away results: a 4-0 humbling of Uruguay in Montevideo and a 3-1 defeat of arch-rivals Argentina in Rosario. It was the latter which confirmed their passage to South Africa.

The star players
Picking just a few names from a country so prolific at producing footballing talent is no easy task, though 2009 did underline the importance of certain key players. Starting between the sticks and we have keeper Julio Cesar, whose safe hands are a vital feature of A Seleção's miserly defence. The triumphant FIFA Confederations Cup South Africa 2009 campaign cemented Kaka's place as the man Brazil look to for inspiration, a fact reflected in him taking the adidas Golden ball. Meanwhile up front, Luis Fabiano proved himself a truly world-class finisher with five goals including a priceless brace in the 3-2 final win over the USA.

The coach
Upon taking the job in August 2006, Carlos Caetano Bledorn Verri, better known as Dunga, had already experienced the full gambit of emotions that come with playing for Brazil. Indeed, having been among the scapegoats targeted after the disappointment at Italy 1990, the powerful midfielder skippered Brazil to victory four years later in the USA. Despite the Brazilian national team position being his first coaching role, Dunga answered those who doubted his credentials by guiding A Canarinha to triumph in the 2007 Copa America, the FIFA Confederations Cup 2009 and qualifying the team for South Africa 2010 with room to spare.

Records
- Brazil are preparing to contest their 19th consecutive FIFA World Cup finals. They are the only country to have taken part in every edition of the global showpiece.
- They are also the only country to have won the title five times: amassing a total of 64 victories, 14 draws and 14 defeats in 92 games played.
- Between 15 June 2008 and 11 October 2009, A Seleção went 19 games unbeaten.

What they said
"We have to learn to live with the favourites' tag. We mustn't let it turn into something negative, as it has done in previous years." Kaka, following the win over Argentina which clinched qualification.

Brazil, Brazilian National Soccer Team, Brazilian National Football Team

It almost goes without saying that Brazil, the five-times world champions, go into every FIFA World Cup™ heavily favoured to add yet another star to the legendary Amarelinha shirt. Having played for A Seleção at three editions of the global showpiece, coach Dunga will be fully aware that any outcome other than a sixth world crown will likely be considered a failure.

The road to South Africa
The fans' at times vitriolic reaction to Brazil's results and performances particularly early on in the qualifying phase illustrates just how demanding they can be. Despite ending the preliminary event on top of the standings, after recording nine wins, seven draws and two defeats, and having clinched a South Africa 2010 berth with three matchdays to spare, the Auriverde camp had been subjected to a torrent of abuse after successive goalless home draws against Argentina, Bolivia and Colombia. Dunga's charges really hit their stride from April 2009, however, racking up five wins in a row including two landmark away results: a 4-0 humbling of Uruguay in Montevideo and a 3-1 defeat of arch-rivals Argentina in Rosario. It was the latter which confirmed their passage to South Africa.

The star players
Picking just a few names from a country so prolific at producing footballing talent is no easy task, though 2009 did underline the importance of certain key players. Starting between the sticks and we have keeper Julio Cesar, whose safe hands are a vital feature of A Seleção's miserly defence. The triumphant FIFA Confederations Cup South Africa 2009 campaign cemented Kaka's place as the man Brazil look to for inspiration, a fact reflected in him taking the adidas Golden ball. Meanwhile up front, Luis Fabiano proved himself a truly world-class finisher with five goals including a priceless brace in the 3-2 final win over the USA.

The coach
Upon taking the job in August 2006, Carlos Caetano Bledorn Verri, better known as Dunga, had already experienced the full gambit of emotions that come with playing for Brazil. Indeed, having been among the scapegoats targeted after the disappointment at Italy 1990, the powerful midfielder skippered Brazil to victory four years later in the USA. Despite the Brazilian national team position being his first coaching role, Dunga answered those who doubted his credentials by guiding A Canarinha to triumph in the 2007 Copa America, the FIFA Confederations Cup 2009 and qualifying the team for South Africa 2010 with room to spare.

Records
- Brazil are preparing to contest their 19th consecutive FIFA World Cup finals. They are the only country to have taken part in every edition of the global showpiece.
- They are also the only country to have won the title five times: amassing a total of 64 victories, 14 draws and 14 defeats in 92 games played.
- Between 15 June 2008 and 11 October 2009, A Seleção went 19 games unbeaten.

What they said
"We have to learn to live with the favourites' tag. We mustn't let it turn into something negative, as it has done in previous years." Kaka, following the win over Argentina which clinched qualification.

Slovakia, Slovakian National Football Team,Slovakian National Football Team,Slovakian National Soccer Team,

Appearing for the first time in a major international competition, Slovakia have been striving to relive the glory years enjoyed by the former Czechoslovakia since going it alone in 1993.

While their team is hardly filled with household names, Slovakia can nonetheless rely on a well-organised collective with plenty of admirable qualities. Likewise, their continuing progress gives them good reason to be optimistic about their voyage to South Africa.

The road to South Africa
Fourth in their section in qualifying for the 1998 FIFA World Cup™ France, third on the road to Korea/Japan 2002 and runners-up ahead of Germany 2006, Slovakia continued their rise by sealing top spot in Group 3. Vladimir Weiss's side booked their historic place on 14 October 2009, upsetting a number of predictions that they would struggle to cope with a difficult pool.

Their passage was far from smooth, but slowly and surely Slovakia mounted their bid, losing only to closest challengers Slovenia. Their nearest rivals proved a real thorn in their side, downing them 2-1 in their second outing and, above all, prevailing 2-0 in Bratislva in the penultimate round of matches, yet Slovakia's desire to experience a FIFA World Cup finals shone through in the end. Needing to prevail in Poland in their final outing, they duly triumphed 1-0.

The star players
Solid at the back for Premier League heavyweights Liverpool, Martin Skrtel is a central figure for his country, while midfielder Marek Hamsik has both a knack of scoring goals for Napoli and the welcome habit of shining for the national side. The latter is unlikely to go unnoticed in South Africa and the same applies to Stanislav Sestak, who finished top scorer for Slovakia with six strikes in qualifying and is eager to continue in similar fashion.

The coach
Born in 1964, former Slovakian international Vladimir Weiss was appointed in June 2008, taking over from Jan Kocian after his predecessor failed to take the side through to UEFA EURO 2008.

Blessed with a strong personality, Weiss learnt the coaching ropes at Artmedia Bratislava, leading the unfancied Slovakian outfit into the UEFA Champions League group phase in 2005/06. The following season, he opted to boost his credentials with Saturn Moscow Oblast in Russia, before celebrating a triumphant return to Artmedia with the Slovakian league title a year after. All that remained was a tilt at leading the national team and, given his previous successes, who knows how far they can progress together?

Vladimir Weiss is also the son of... Vladimir Weiss, a former Czechoslovakian international. In fact, he is the father of Vladimir Weiss too, with his son plying his trade at Manchester City and often called up to demonstrate his worth in a national team shirt.

Previous FIFA World Cups
While this may be Slovakia's first appearance on the global stage, the country's footballing past is naturally tied up with that of the former Czechoslovakia, who participated in eight finals overall. Czechoslovakia even reached the final in 1934, losing 2-1 after extra time to Italy, and 1962, when they succumbed 3-1 to Brazil. They also advanced as far as the last eight in 1990.

Honours (as Czechoslovakia)

- 1 UEFA European Championship (1976)
- 1 Olympic Football Tournament (1980)

What they said
"We're very persistant: we don't give up until we've succeeded," Stanislav Sestak, striker.

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