The Round of 16 at the 2010 FIFA World Cup(1/4-final)

The two European giants could not have foreseen crossing paths so early in the competition, but England’s second-place finish in Group C denied them a supposedly more straightforward route.

Neither side have been at their authoritative best so far and both had to roll up their sleeves to advance, though Germany look to have successfully integrated fresh young talent from last year’s European U-21 Championship-winning team. For England, coach Fabio Capello has slightly relaxed his usual disciplined approach but will again look to his senior players to deliver victory.

No longer gripped by the fear of falling at the group stage, the two contenders are now free to serve up a feast of drama and tension, with one of Europe’s biggest names falling by the wayside at the final whistle.

Argentina coach Diego Maradona took time settling into his new role but has succeeded in communicating his message to a squad devoted to his leadership and obviously enjoying life in South Africa.

Drawing on his own experiences as a player, Maradona handed the captain’s armband to Lionel Messi ahead of the Mexico game, and his diminutive genius is looking increasingly at ease in an Argentina shirt, but Mexico boast their finest ever generation of players and will do anything but roll over.

The matches
Germany-England, Mangaung/Bloemfontein, 16.00 (local time)
Argentina-Mexico, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 20.30 (local time)

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Round of 16
Match Date – Time Venue Results
49 26/06 16:00 Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth Uruguay Uruguay 2:1 (1:0) Korea Republic Korea Republic
50 26/06 20:30 Rustenburg USA USA 1:2 a.e.t. (1:1, 0:1) Ghana Ghana
51 27/06 16:00 Mangaung/Bloemfontein Germany Germany 4:1 (2:1) England England
52 27/06 20:30 Johannesburg Argentina Argentina 3:1 (2:0) Mexico Mexico
53 28/06 16:00 Durban Netherlands Netherlands 2:1 (1:0) Slovakia Slovakia
54 28/06 20:30 Johannesburg Brazil Brazil 3:0 (2:0) Chile Chile
55 29/06 16:00 Tshwane/Pretoria Paraguay Paraguay 0:0 a.e.t. 5:3 PSO Japan Japan
56 29/06 20:30 Cape Town Spain Spain 1:0 (0:0) Portugal Portugal
Quarter-finals

Match Date – Time Venue Results
57 02/07 16:00 Nelson Mandela Bay/Port Elizabeth Netherlands Netherlands Background Brazil Brazil
58 02/07 20:30 Johannesburg Uruguay Uruguay Background Ghana Ghana
59 03/07 16:00 Cape Town Argentina Argentina Background Germany Germany
60 03/07 20:30 Johannesburg Paraguay Paraguay Background Spain Spain

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TODAY 26.06.2010

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Uruguay – Korea Republic 2:1

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USA – Ghana 1:2

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TODAY 27.06.2010
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Germany – England 4:1

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Argentina – Mexico 3:1

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TODAY 28.06.2010
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Netherlands – Slovakia 2:1

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Brazil – Chile 3:0

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TODAY 29.06.2010

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Paraguay – Japan 5:3

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Spain – Portugal 1:0

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TODAY 02.07.2010
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Netherlands – Brazil 2:1

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Nīderlandes izlase ceturtdaļfinālā ar rezultātu 2:1 uzvarēja pieckārtējos pasaules čempionus Brazīlijas futbolistus


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Uruguay – Ghana 4:2

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TODAY 03.07.2010
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Germany – Argentina 4:0

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Paraguay – Spain 0:1

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The Round of 1/4 and final

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Uruguay – Netherlands 2:3

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TODAY 07.07.2010
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GERMANY – SPAIN 0:1

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TODAY 10.07.2010
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Uruguay – Germany 2:3

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Today10.07.2010

Spain and Holland, who meet in Sunday’s World Cup final, can both thank one man for inspiring their soccer style – Johan Cruyff.

Cruyff was in the Dutch side which lost the 1974 final to Germany, but his influence can be seen today on the Spanish just as much as on his own countrymen, thanks to his spell at Barcelona.

“I represent a time when beautiful football was entertaining – and moreover, successful,” said the creative fulcrum of the Dutch side which wowed the world with their flowing “total football” three decades ago, whereby players could comfortably slip in and out of several roles.

Cruyff likes the current Dutch generation.

So, too, does Oscar Tabarez, whose Uruguay could not prevent Holland from edging them out in their semi-final to reach a third final after 1974 and 1978.

“They are all good players, technically gifted – (Mark) Van Bommel, (Wesley) Sneijder, (Arjen) Robben… and there are some who are very good technically allied to incredible power, such as (Dirk) Kuyt. You have the impression the Dutch are permanently on the attack,” said Tabarez.

The abiding Cruyff influence comes from spending a large chunk of his career in the colours of Barcelona.

He was there at his peak in the mid 1970s and then coached them for eight years, landing the Catalan club’s first European Cup in 1992.

Current Barca boss Pep Guardiola – who led them to their third European crown in 2009 after another Dutchman, in Frank Rijkaard, had masterminded the second in 2006 – was a player under Cruyff.

Clearly something rubbed off as Barca landing an unprecedented six trophies in the season before last.

The Barcelona effect is now under-pinning the Spanish success with seven of the starting line-up featuring in the semi-final win over Germany.

Current Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque is also a fan of the pass-and-move game which Cruyff likes.

That’s where the two finalists interface with the Dutch influence on Barcelona going back four decades to when Rinus Michels was coach at the Nou Camp and Cruyff was the playing star.

In more recent years, the Dutch influence has grown with the likes of Louis Van Gaal and then Rijkaard also coaching the side while a host of Dutch stars such as Johan Neeskens, 1992 Champions League-winning goalscorer Ronald Koeman, Cruyff’s own son Jordi, Patrick Kluivert and the De Boer brothers playing for Barca.

Only with Rijkaard leaving in 2008 and the 2007 departure of current Dutch skipper Giovanni van Bronckhorst back to the Netherlands has the influence waned.

The Barca streak in the Spanish-set up is stronger than ever with Carles Puyol heading the winner against the Germans and Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta pulling strings while David Villa has just joined the club from Valencia.

Keeper Victor Valdes – understudy to Spanish skipper Iker Casillas – says the club-to-country transition is quite easy.

“For the style that the coach wants us to play it’s very similar – we try to move the ball around and that’s rather like the Barca way of doing things.”

TODAY 11.07.2010

SPAIN – Netherlands 1:0

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SPAIN ! SPAIN ! SPAIN ! SPAIN ! SPAIN ! !!!!!!!

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