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FIFA World Cup Soccer 2006 (Archive) Biggest sporting event in the world. This is time for the sky high excitement.

 
 
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  #26  
Old June 8, 2006, 12:09 AM
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Brazil warned to be 'patient'
From correspondents in Brazil
June 8, 2006

BRAZIL wingback Roberto Carlos has warned his teammates not to be over-confident but to be patient as they chase a sixth World Cup win.

"It's a short competition and there's no room for mistakes," said the Real Madrid defender overnight as he contemplated a second Cup triumph, after 2002, ahead of Wednesday's (AEST) Group F opener with Croatia.

"We are talking to the youngsters a lot to impress on them what the World Cup is all about. Most of them play for a big club and have big-match experience but a World Cup is different," said the 33-year-old veteran of the side which lost the 1998 final to France.

Oozing talent, Brazil is favourite to make it six titles in all – but Roberto Carlos said it must take nothing for granted.

"Everyone thinks it's easy but we have to keep focused. Over the past 12 years Brazil has been in the final (1994, 1998, 2002) and we must retain this mentality while respecting opponents.

"We mustn't fall into thinking we are the best – we lost the 1998 World Cup and the 1997 Copa America like that," he said, adding that Brazil has to watch out for Croatia on the counter attack.

Last year the teams parted 1-1 in a friendly when Croatia threw caution to the wind up front – a tactic Roberto Carlos doesn't expect to see this time.

"Frankly, I don't think they'll put three up front against us at a World Cup. But Croatia are a good side with experienced players of quality. I think for us it will be important to keep our nerve and control the ball."

With an ageing defence, Brazil's strengths appear greatest in attack, as is its tradition.

But Roberto Carlos insisted that "we have a solid backline.

"And in addition to that, we'll certainly get goals as we have a fantastic group of players up front."

Agence France-Presse
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  #27  
Old June 8, 2006, 02:57 AM
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Guus sick of sloppy Roos
By Toby Forage
Fox Sports editor
June 8, 2006

GUUS Hiddink went in hard on a sloppy Australia today after the Socceroos put in a lacklustre display against Liechtenstein in their final World Cup warm-up.
Promise ... but Hiddink feels Kewell is not 100 per cent. Pic: Reuters






Australia recorded a 3-1 win, but the scoreline was a flattering one for Hiddink's charges, who went behind to a Lucas Neill own goal before pulling clear for victory with only 15 minutes of the match remaining.

The Dutch coach was given heart from some individual performances, but he got heartburn from several others.

"We played too slow. I didn't like the way we started the game," Hiddink fumed.

"I cannot stand this lack of concentration.

"We must wake up. We cannot afford this in the first game."

Hiddink has been putting the Socceroos through some serious training sessions over the past few weeks, flogging them into full match fitness ahead of Monday's Group F clash with Japan.
While they performed admirably against world No.3 the Netherlands on Sunday night - snatching a 1-1 draw despite being down to 10-men for half an hour - today's effort was far from convincing against a team ranked well outside the world's top 100.

Only 33,000 people live in Liechtenstein, yet the part-time minnow stretched the Socceroos far too much for Hiddink's liking.

He said the team could not afford so many mistakes against Japan, let alone defending champion Brazil which heads up Group F, and European dark horse Croatia.

"There is still lots to do still because we can't afford these errors," Hiddink said.

Liverpool star Harry Kewell was happier than his coach having got through the match unscathed as he continues his rehabilitation from a groin injury.

The playmaker was impressive for the 60 minutes he spent on the field, and claimed Hiddink's pushing of the past fortnight was key to him feeling as good as he is.

"I feel I could play 120 (minutes)," Kewell said. "But it's the manager's choice. We're working together and let's see where it takes me."

Hiddink, however, remains unconvinced by Kewell's fitness, and said while he is impressing, there is still work to do.

"He's not in full shape but that's why these games are very important for him," Hiddink said.

"He will be there against Japan if he makes progress in the next few days, whether it's from the start or coming in later."

Another bright spot for Australia was the performance of lanky striker Josh Kennedy, who scored Australia's second goal on his full international debut coming off the bench.

Kennedy climbed high to head home a Brett Emerton cross in the 75th minute to put the Socceroos 2-1 ahead and made a nuisance of himself in the penalty area on several other occasions.

The Socceroos had to fight back from a goal down after Neill awkwardly headed back into his own net in the eighth minute.
The clumsy defending came after a seemingly innocuous free-kick, which Neill managed to loop past a sprawling and helpless Zeljko Kalac.

Striker Mile Sterjovski got the Socceroos back on level terms after 20 minutes but they could not find a way past their plucky opponents despite a stack of chances, which will be a concern to Hiddink.

Liechtenstein also had its chances particularly in the opening 10 minutes of the second half, before Kennedy broke the 1-1 deadlock and nearly an hour of Socceroos frustration with 15 minutes remaining.

John Aloisi put the issue beyond doubt with Australia's third goal seven minutes from time.

With AAP

FOX SPORTS
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  #28  
Old June 8, 2006, 03:07 AM
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Pele tips Brazil to struggle




Japan missing heart: Nakata
Croatia detects defensive chinks



Guus sick of sloppy Roos


Heavens! Whatevers next?
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  #29  
Old June 8, 2006, 03:56 AM
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i reckon every1 is trying to be modest....trying to make themselves sound very unprepared so opponents will go easy on them to begin with b4 they lauch the actual assault..
  #30  
Old June 8, 2006, 10:12 AM
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Tiger-man,

Never !

But seriously, 3-1 against Lichestein isnt good enough. I think Australia, Japan and Croatia will all be a totally mess, with all sides knowing 2 wins should be enough to progress ... and each of them having enough that, with a large helping of luck, that they can maybe take a point off Brazil.

It's a good group, and I'm expecting good games.

Ian Whitchurch
  #31  
Old June 9, 2006, 10:52 AM
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Socceroos quiet on Viduka
From Guy Hand in Oehringen, Germany,
June 9, 2006

AUSTRALIA is playing down the disturbing sight of skipper Mark Viduka limping and wearing a compression sock just four days out from its World Cup opener.

Worry ... Viduka looks on at training. Pic: Reuters




Viduka didn't train with his teammates today, instead leaving the field with physiotherapist Les Gelis for treatment on a calf injury as serious training started for the rest of the Socceroos squad.

Viduka emerged late in the session wearing a compression sock on his right calf before limping to the team bus, fuelling fears he may have a fitness issue the Socceroos can ill afford going into their opening match against Japan in Kaiserslautern on Monday.

The official line is Viduka has a "tight calf" and the skipper will be fine to play Japan.

But the spin was similar for midfield player Marco Bresciano two days before, and he revealed today he was actually bed-ridden by an ear infection.

Set-piece specialist Bresciano had been put on cortisone and antibiotics to fight the pain and infection, although he recovered well enough to train with the team overnight and said he would definitely play against Japan.

"I've had it for about four or five days but a couple of nights ago I couldn't sleep and I found out it was an ear infection," Bresciano said.

"I'm actually feeling a lot better. I've still got pain but its bearable now.

"I was just in bed. It's more just the pain. There wasn't any imbalance or anything."

Bresciano's recovery is heartening news for the Socceroos, who are likely to rely heavily on the Italian-based player's delivery from corners and free-kicks to trouble a Japan defence they rate as vulnerable to set-pieces and aerial balls.

That perceived weakness could also lead to an opportunity for Australia's giant striker Josh Kennedy as a possible game-breaker against Japan.

Kennedy proved his mettle in Australia's lacklustre win over Liechtenstein yesterday (AEST).

Causing havoc in the air after coming on with the score at 1-1, Kennedy got his head to a Brett Emerton cross with 15 minutes remaining to break the deadlock.

If Australia finds itself in a similar situation against Japan, Kennedy now appears certain to be coach Guus Hiddink's weapon of choice.

Japan also has its own injury worries, with playmaker Shunsuke Nakamura - one of the two skilful midfield players Australia must muzzle on Monday along with Hidetoshi Nakata - quitting training early today with a hamstring injury.

"He felt something funny in his left hamstring and we told him to rest up and play it safe," Japan team doctor Tsuguo Morikawa said.

AAP
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  #32  
Old June 9, 2006, 10:01 PM
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great news.....he HAD to get injured b4 the biggest games...
  #33  
Old June 10, 2006, 02:58 AM
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Yehhh, I'm not happy! I just got my Socceroos jersey numbered with 'Viduka' '9' on the front and back!
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  #34  
Old June 10, 2006, 03:07 AM
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Socceroos 'will find' 30pc
By Guy Hand in Oehringen
June 10, 2006

THE Socceroos have promised the "missing 30 per cent" coach Guus Hiddink has demanded will be found in time for Monday's World Cup opener against Japan.

Hiddink spoke of needing another 30 per cent improvement after his side's impressive 1-0 win over Greece nearly three weeks ago.

And he has spoken consistently since of being "70 per cent happy" and his players needing to raise the bar – even after the gutsy 1-1 draw with world No.3 Holland last week.

The Dutchman was ropable with elements of the Socceroos' final pre-World Cup hitout against tiny Liechtenstein in Ulm on Wednesday – describing the 3-1 win as sloppy and telling his players they needed to "wake up" in a rare public blast.

But his players say they are ready to fire after an intense preparation, marked by a heavy three-week training workload which is now only starting to taper off.

"From (the Liechtenstein game) there's a fair bit of improvement left in us," midfielder Brett Emerton said.

"We were only about 60 or 70 per cent in that game. We made a few changes and played a different formation, but that's no excuse.

"We'll be looking to put in a much better performance in the first game. It's a lot better to get a sloppy performance out of the way now than in the World Cup."

Midfielder Josip Skoko, one of few to emerge from the Liechtenstein game with some credit, said the disappointing performance had not eroded the team's confidence going into the Japan game.

"We have to work on some things, making less errors, but in bigger games against better quality opposition, we'll get it right," Skoko said.

"The negatives we'll look at and work on.

"We've had some good results coming in. It hasn't changed our confidence position."

The Socceroos are hoping to shelve speculation concerning skipper Mark Viduka's World Cup fitness, sweating on him being able to train fully with his teammates.

They have played down the disturbing sight of Viduka, Australia's attacking spearhead, limping and wearing a compression sock just days out from the team's World Cup opener against Japan.

Viduka didn't train with his teammates on Thursday, instead leaving the field with physiotherapist Les Gelis for treatment on a right calf injury, as serious training started for the squad.

He emerged late in the session wearing a compression sock on his calf before limping to the team bus, fuelling fears he may have a fitness issue the Socceroos can ill afford going into what looms as a must-win match against Japan.

Viduka also dodged a scheduled media appearance to add to the concern.

The official line is Viduka has a "tight calf" and will be fine to play Japan, and the Socceroos were given the day off on Friday after a testing three weeks of training.

They return to the training track in Oehringen today before they head to Kaiserslautern in the country's west the following day ahead of Monday's match.

It will be Australia's first World Cup finals appearance in 32 years, with more Aussies expected to tune in to the match (Monday at 11pm AEST) than any other soccer game in the nation's history.

AAP
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  #35  
Old June 10, 2006, 01:03 PM
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Roos ready for game of their lives
By David Lewis in Stuttgart
June 11, 2006

WITH the phony war finally over, Australia enter what is effectively its World Cup final against Japan tomorrow night happy to be the underdog.

A day on the golf course after a gruelling few months of two-a-day training sessions has the Socceroos primed for the game of their lives in Kaiserslautern, in what is the biggest game in the history of Australian football.

"We have a chance to create new history," defender Lucas Neill said from the team's base at Oehringen in southern Germany.

"We're determined not to go out and lose three games in a row. That would be 'well done, you got to the World Cup'.

"That's not good enough any more.

"We have set higher expectations than that. I don't want to just make up the numbers. I don't want to fall flat on my face."

Chastened by a below-par performance in the final friendly match against European minnow Liechtenstein, the Socceroos have to raise their game against a Japanese outfit rated the No.1 team in Asia.

While the 1974 Socceroos lost two matches and drew one in Germany, without scoring a goal in the group stage, Guus Hiddink's 2006 version has its eyes on the second round and beyond.

And for that dream to be realised, a win against the Japan - or at least a draw - is paramount.

"The first game is always the most important," midfield player Jason Culina said.

"You come away with three points and all you need is basically a point from the other two games."

Stellar displays against Greece and the Netherlands have the Socceroos brimming with confidence that they can escape Group F as the second-best qualifier behind Brazil.

Assistant coach Graham Arnold said: "The games against Uruguay, Greece and (the Netherlands) set the bar pretty high and now the players know that they have to live up to it every time they play.

"Anything less just isn't going to get us anywhere."

Arnold is well equipped to discuss Japan after rounding off his long overseas playing career with a two-year stint with Sanfrecce Hiroshima.

"They will probably expect to beat us, which actually suits us fine," Arnold said.

"Australians across all codes love to be the underdogs and we're also happy with that.

"If anybody wants to underestimate us, good.

"Japan are the No.1 team in Asia but we're not overly concerned by that and we're feeling confident of getting the result we need."

Arnold gave few clues about Hiddink's likely starting line-up against the Blue Samurai, though Mark Schwarzer is expected to be confirmed as goalkeeper ahead of Zeljko Kalac.

Everton midfield player Tim Cahill is more likely to start than Harry Kewell, with the Liverpool match-winner being considered as an impact player from the bench.

Arnold also doused any concerns over captain Mark Viduka, saying his rest from training two days ago was purely precautionary to protect a sore calf.

Marco Bresciano, the Parma midfield player, is on the mend from his ear infection and will also start.

Neill acknowledged the speed and skill of Japan, which reached the final 16 of the World Cup it co-hosted in 2002, but said it held no fears for the Socceroos.

"I think everyone feels Japan is a team that's there to be beaten," Neill said.

"They were a very strong force in the last World Cup, highly committed and obviously a lot of money was put into them because of the fact they were hosting the tournament.

"But I think they've dropped off the pace since then.

"They are in a transition period, and I think it's probably a perfect time to be playing them.

"Three points from this match would just shape our whole tournament. It could decide whether we make it into the second round.

"If we beat Japan we would go into the next match (against Brazil) thinking if we got a draw it could take us through.

"That's why it's so crucial. We'll be looking to make that our Cup final."

The Sunday Telegraph
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  #36  
Old June 10, 2006, 01:06 PM
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Viduka returns to training
From Guy Hand in Oehringen, Germany
June 11, 2006

AUSTRALIA captain Mark Viduka has rejoined his teammates for a closed training session ahead of Australia's World Cup opener on Monday.

Viduka missed the majority of training on Thursday with a calf injury, and eventually emerged late in the session limping and wearing a compression sock.

But he was back warming up with his teammates for the start of today's session with no apparent problems - though what happened beyond that is a mystery after coach Guus Hiddink locked out media to work on team shape and tactics.

Hiddink called off a planned morning session to concentrate on just the one hitout today.

The team is scheduled for a final training run at the Fritz-Walter-Stadion in Kaiserslautern tomorrow - the venue for its match against Japan the following day.

Nine of the 11 starting spots in the team to play Japan seem to have been sealed, though conjecture remains about two midfield spots, including the one nominally belonging to Harry Kewell.

Much will depend on whether Hiddink decides to start Kewell or use him as an impact player to ensure no problems with the groin injury that has affected his World Cup preparation.

If he decides to take the latter option, striker John Aloisi may join Viduka up front in a 4-4-2 formation, or wide midfield player Mile Sterjovski may be named as a straight swap for Kewell in a 4-2-3-1 formation.

Tim Cahill appears likely to get the nod ahead of Josip Skoko for the other midfield spot, though Skoko could still be a starter as another option to step in for Kewell.

Hiddink and Viduka meanwhile received a written message of support today from Prime Minister John Howard.

"All Australians will be right behind you," Mr Howard wrote, adding his and the nation's best wishes for the Socceroos' first World Cup appearance in 32 years.

The team has been inundated with messages of support from a diverse range of high-profile Australians, including champion swimmers Grant Hackett and Leisel Jones, three-time Gold Logie winner Rove McManus and singer Shannon Noll.

AAP
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  #37  
Old June 10, 2006, 01:15 PM
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Here's the preview of the Japan- Australia match

Japan kick off their FIFA World Cup bid on 12 June at Kaiserslautern's Fritz-Walter-Stadion with a stated target of reaching the semi-finals. Their opponents Australia are appearing at their second FIFA World Cup, 32 years after their first appearance, also on German soil, and this opening Group F clash could well prove vital to both sides' hopes of a place in the next round.



Colours for the game
Australia: yellow shirt, green shorts, yellow socks
Japan: blue shirt, white shorts, blue socks
The players
Japan are particularly well served in the midfield area, boasting talented overseas-based players such as Hidetoshi Nakata - set for his third consecutive FIFA World Cup and with experience of Italy's Serie A and the English Premiership - and Shunsuke Nakamura, currently at Celtic after three seasons playing for Reggina in Italy. The Australia squad also comprises mainly European-based players and the Japan defence must be particularly aware of the quick footwork of Liverpool winger Harry Kewell, who could prove a major threat down the left for Australia. Captain Mark Viduka will also test the Japanese with his power and skill up front.
How they qualified
Japan topped Group B in the final round of the Asian qualifiers and were the first team to qualify for the finals after the host nation Germany. Their only defeat in that final round was a 2-1 loss to Iran in Tehran. The Socceroos qualified by defeating Uruguay in the intercontinental play-off. The aggregate score was level at 1-1 after two legs, taking the second-leg tie in Sydney into penalties, where goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer was Australia's hero.
Past meetings
The two sides have never met at the FIFA World Cup although they did face each other in the semi-finals of the FIFA Confederations Cup Korea/Japan 2001, where Japan were narrow 1-0 winners thanks to Hidetoshi Nakata's pinpoint free-kick. In ten meetings overall, Japan have three victories to their name and Australia four.
Tournament history
A FIFA member since 1929, Germany 2006 will be Japan's third FIFA World Cup finals following their participation in the previous two editions. Their first appearance came at France 98, where they lost all three matches, but the Blues bounced back four years later to reach the last 16 on home soil. As for Australia, they head to Germany having missed out on the last eight tournaments. Since gaining FIFA member status in 1963, their only other appearance was at the 1974 tournament in Germany, where they were knocked out in the first round. Subsequent qualifying campaigns have seen them regularly overpower their regional rivals in the Oceania qualifying zone, only to fall at the last hurdle, the intercontinental play-offs. The Socceroos are therefore especially determined to make an impression this time around.
Key contest
The inspiration behind Japan's attacking play is the gifted left foot of Brazilian-born wide manAlessandro Santos. The Urawa Reds man will line up against Blackburn Rovers winger Brett Emerton. Emerton scored four goals in eight games in qualifying, and his attacking abilities will certainly put Santos under pressure. Attacks down the flanks could hold the key for both teams, and the battle between this pair may prove pivotal. The coaches
This tournament will be the first time that Japan coach Zico has led a team into a FIFA World Cup finals. As a player, wearing Brazil's coveted No.10 shirt, he played in three consecutive finals (1978, 1982 and 1986). He has endeavoured to give the players as much freedom as possible, an approach which has helped many Japanese internationals reach their full potential. Although a less-exalted player than Zico, Australia coach, Guus Hiddink , is one of the world's most-respected coaches. He took the Netherlands to the semi-finals at France 98, then led Korea Republic's historic charge to the last four at Korea/Japan 2002. He worked his magic again this time round by breaking Australia's play-off hoodoo and taking them safely through to Germany.
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Last edited by Miraz; June 10, 2006 at 01:25 PM..
  #38  
Old June 10, 2006, 01:22 PM
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Thanks Miraz.
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  #39  
Old June 11, 2006, 06:06 AM
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Kaji ruled out of Australia match
From correspondents in Bonn, Germany
June 11, 2006

JAPAN coach Zico has ruled out injured first-choice right winger Akira Kaji from the Asian champion's World Cup opener against Australia on Monday.

But the 26-year-old Osaka Gamba star may be ready for Japan's second match against 1998 semi-finalist Croatia on June 18.

"Kaji is in the process of improving," Zico said after training today before Japan left Bonn for Kaiserslautern, where it plays Australia.

"I think he can make it on the 18th, barring any more problems."

Kaji, who leads Japan's wing attacks with Brazilian-born left-winger Alessandro "Alex" Santos, hurt his right ankle when he was tackled from behind by Bastian Schweinsteiger in a 2-2 friendly draw against Germany 11 days ago.

Kaji, the member of Japan's injury-hit squad still unable to resume full team training, was seen jogging separately at today's training session.

"It still hurts when I make small steps and turns," Kaji said of the injury.

"But I can kick the ball without feeling any pain.

Zico also said that he expected Atsushi Yanagisawa, one of Japan's top strikers, to be fit for the match against the Socceroos.

Yanagisawa complained of pain in his right hamstring after playing in the Germany friendly.

His strike partner, Naohiro Takahara, also injured in the Germany match, in which he scored twice, has regained full fitness.

"Yanagisawa has cleared everything, expanding his regimen day by day," Zico said.

Agence France-Presse
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  #40  
Old June 11, 2006, 06:09 AM
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Roos anger at fair-play slur
June 11, 2006

AUSTRALIA has reacted angrily to Japan suggestions they are a dirty team, raising the stakes even further for the most important football match in Australian history.

Japanese Football Association chief executive Saburo Kawabuchi has inflamed tensions between the two sides ahead of their World Cup opener in Kaiserslatuern tomorrow.

"Australia are guilty of a lot of dirty fouls," Kawabuchi told Japanese sports magazine Japanese sport daily Hochi.

"They target ankles in particular. Japan must stand up to them."

Playmaker Shunsuke Nakamura also bought into the argument, saying Japan hopes to be able to draw fouls around the edge of the box because of the Socceroos' penchant for getting stuck in.

But Socceroos coach Guus Hiddink described the Japanese comments as "irresponsible behaviour" and believes the furore arising from Australia's style of play in the 1-1 draw against Holland last week is designed to influence referees.

"That's ridiculous," an angry Hiddink said of the comments.

"I am getting very angry when people are suggesting this.

"We have a good team, they like to fight in a game, and when people come out with this (these comments) ... it is irresponsible behaviour."

Brazil coach Carlos Alberto Parreira has also publicly questioned Australia's tactics the past week and urged referees to protect his players against the Socceroos when they play their second Group F match on June 18.

Hiddink said comments designed to influence referees were not sportsmanlike.

"That's not fair – you should play fair at the beginning. Judge if the moments are there (in a game). Don't condition referees by making those comments," he said.

"The people who make these comments show irresponsible behaviour towards our team and the sport in general."

Skipper Mark Viduka vowed the team would not change its approach and "would never pull out of a tackle".

"To be honest I don't know what the hype's about. We as Australians play fair every time we go out," he said.

"We're very competitive people, we want to win, we will never pull out of a tackle.

"But it doesn't mean we go out to hurt people."

Hiddink looks set to use Harry Kewell off the bench, saying today he is unsure whether the Liverpool star would be able to last a full game because he had missed so much fitness work following his groin injury.

It is believed that Mile Sterjovski will start as Viduka's attacking support from midfield, with Kewell and giant striker Josh Kennedy likely to be used as impact weapons off the bench to test Japan's defence late in the match.

Tim Cahill is also expected to be preferred to Josip Skoko in midfield, although Hiddink's intentions will become clearer in the team's final training session ahead of the match overnight (AEST).

He usually hands out the coveted yellow bibs, indicating the starting 11, for a match simulation during training against those who haven't made the team.

The Socceroos' final session will be at the venue for tomorrow's match – the Fritz-Walter-Stadion in Kaiserslautern.

They will stay overnight in the town in western Germany, which is a two-hour drive from their Friedrichsruhe base.

AAP
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  #41  
Old June 11, 2006, 02:26 PM
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A couple of hilarious Nike 'Joga Bonito' Socceroos videos off Youtube. Currently being shown on TV down here.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0GOvjTaW3fM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3lBMnN_0GEk


LOL @ "Soccer-who's"!
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  #42  
Old June 11, 2006, 02:46 PM
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The second video is the best
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  #43  
Old June 12, 2006, 09:56 AM
IanW IanW is offline
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Ahem, a short message from the man of the match's old club ...

"No-one loves us we dont care, Millwall, Millwall".

Ian Whitchurch
  #44  
Old June 12, 2006, 10:19 AM
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Orpheus Orpheus is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr-Cricket
A couple of hilarious Nike 'Joga Bonito' Socceroos videos off Youtube. Currently being shown on TV down here.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0GOvjTaW3fM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3lBMnN_0GEk


LOL @ "Soccer-who's"!
Not bad.

Anywas from the ads so far shown here, I really like the adidas ad. Jose + 10

Very cool ad....I like the shoretened one where Jose picks beckenbauer.. and every is like Beckenbauer? haha... and Beckenbuer runs in...

Gem.
  #45  
Old June 12, 2006, 11:16 AM
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Miraz Miraz is offline
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Australia really surprised me with the pace and fitness. They were sim ply superb in attack and dominated the midfield right from the beginning.

Japan made few tactical mostake after leading by a solitary goal. They were attackign through wings but had little support in the middle. Wingers also wasted most of the cross.

Now, I think, Brazil - Australia will be a good match.
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  #46  
Old June 12, 2006, 11:18 AM
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tiger_man tiger_man is offline
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i think brazil-australia is gonna be a piece of cake waiting to be eaten...with cahill and aloisi on attack....we will eat them alive...
  #47  
Old June 12, 2006, 12:15 PM
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aaaaaaaahhhhhh omg what a win amazing stuff fellas jujst got hommee tpook me few goes to log in australia!! timmhyy!!!!!

amazing!!
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  #48  
Old June 13, 2006, 04:29 AM
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Cahill keeps the dream alive
By Andy Withers
Fox Sports
June 13, 2006

Australia 3 Japan 1
TIM Cahill grabbed his place in World Cup folklore this morning, scoring Australia's first goals in finals history as the Socceroos came back from the dead to beat Japan 3-1 in Kaiserslautern.

Aloisi ... another bare-chested celebration. Pic: Reuters Pics Video



The Everton midfield player scored twice in the final six minutes of regulation time before fellow super-sub John Aloisi netted in injury time as Australia recovered after trailing for much of the match to a controversial first-half strike from Shunsuke Nakamura.

Australia's World Cup dream seemed to be heading for a nightmare opening in Group F as it looked to be running out of ideas in the 35C heat.

But Cahill had other plans.

A second-half substitute for Marco Bresciano, he struck in the 84th minute to turn the fixture that had been given a pre-match "do or die" label.

Japan goalkeeper Yoshikatsu Kawaguchi, who had only just made a fine right-hand save to deny Aloisi from a free-kick, was at fault for the goal, going for Lucas Neill's long throw-in without ever looking likely to claim it.

Substitute striker Josh Kennedy, who made a substantial impact after his 60th-minute introduction for centre-back Craig Moore, involved in everything that was good about Australia's play, beat the keeper to the ball, which then fell to Cahill to lash home from inside the six-yard box.

Cahill was typically modest about the first goal, describing it as "a lucky swipe" that was "a bit fortunate".

"Basically it was just a long throw from Lucas Neill from the left,'' he said.

"It got a flick on (from Josh Kennedy) and it came through to Harry (Kewell).

"Harry's gone in on a challenge, the ball's popped out and I've just swiped at it.

"I think it went through John Aloisi's legs, and one of the defenders' legs and rippled into the net.

"It was a bit fortunate."

Cahill, sent into the fray in the 52nd minute, said it felt "fantastic" to go into the record books as Australia's first goal scorer at a World Cup finals.

"This is what we'll all look back to, not only the lads here, but our families and everyone who has helped us," he said.

"Just being part of this World Cup is unbelievable, but to get the goal is the icing on the cake.

"When you're a kid you dream of moments like this."

Cahill, who has been carrying a knee injury since the last weekend of the English Premier League season, beat Kawaguchi for the second time five minutes later.

He netted off the inside of the left goal post with a wonderful right-foot shot from outside the penalty area.

The goals continued Cahill's tremendous scoring record for Australia, and he has now hit 12 in 17 internationals.

Spain-based striker Aloisi, the third of coach Guus Hiddink's second-half substitutions, was sent on for midfield player Luke Wilkshire.

He added further lustre to the recovery when he scored a sensational goal, driving into the penalty box to lash home a left-foot shot after being set up by Kennedy in midfield.

The goals were a salvation for Australia goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer, who was partially to blame for the goal that seemed likely for 60 minutes to end the Socceroos' dreams prematurely.

Schwarzer was unconvincing as he went for Nakamura's 26th-minute chipped diagonal cross ball into the six-yard box, and the ball sailed straight into the net after he failed to get a touch following heavy contact with Japan striker Naohiro Takahara.

The Socceroos claimed that Takahara, who led with his left arm, had obstructed Schwarzer, but Egyptian referee Essam Abd El Fatah judged the Japan striker had simply stood his ground.

The decision caused consternation among Australia's ranks, and Hiddink was visibly upset as he viewed a replay on a touchline television monitor.

Kewell, a surprise inclusion in Australia's starting XI, and holding midfield player Vince Grella were also seen protesting at the official, who gave Grella a yellow card five minutes later after persistent backchat.

Hiddink paid tribute to his side's ability to fight back after things had gone against it, saying justice had eventually been done.

"Regarding the weather, regarding the circumstances, it was very difficult to come back, and that's why I think these guys deserve big compliments for how they kept on going," Hiddink said.

"I'm not saying this out of arrogance, but we were sure that they were capable of doing so (coming back).

"This team is nice to work with because they never give up, and this team tried to play good football."

Cahill played down the importance of his perfomance.

"Just being a part of this World Cup means everything to all of us," he said.

"We've all worked ever so hard to be here, and the goal is just the icing on the cake."

Australia made a nervous start to the match, raising a spectre of the opening disasters in recent friendlies against the Netherlands and Liechtenstein, and Bresciano conceded a free-kick in the opening minute on the edge of the Socceroos' penalty area.

The chance came to nothing, but Japan winger Alex, a Brazilian expat, soon twice skinned Wilkshire, another surprise selection, before the Socceroos settled into a rhythm.

Australia captain Mark Viduka was an imposing presence in attack, particularly in the first half, both as a static target man and as a mobile striker who pulled his markers to the left and right.

Viduka had Australia's first chance, in the sixth minute, after he was played in behind the Japan defence on the left.

He forced Kawaguchi into a double save, first from a right-foot half volley and then with a first-time left-foot snap shot.

The keeper had to be at his best again in the 24th-minute, stretching to make a fine left-hand save to deny Bresciano after Viduka had set up the midfield player with a fine backheel pass.

Japan warned Australia that it remained an attacking threat five minutes before the goal when Alex ghosted past Wilkshire and laid the ball off to Takahara.

The striker shimmied past Scott Chipperfield to create space, but he dragged his shot wide of the left upright.

Japan continued to play more on the counter-attack in the second half, looking particularly dangerous with Yuichi Komano, Hidetoshi Nakata and Nakamura taking turns to exploit space on Australia's left defensive flank.

Yet it created just one opportunity in the second stanza, in the 87th minute, just after conceding the equaliser, when second-half substitute Shinji Ono teed-up Takashi Fukunushi in space.

The midfield player advanced, stepped inside Neill and rasped a right-foot shot past Schwarzer only to see his strike go the wrong side of the post.

Fukunushi could not then realise how much his miss - as he should have hit the target - would cost his side.

The Socceroos looked dangerous in attack in the second half but were rarely able to carve out a clear-cut opportunity.

Their best opportunity of the period, until the heroics of Cahill and Aloisi, fell to Viduka.

The Socceroos captain stepped up to accept the responsibility of a 67th-minute free-kick on the edge of the penalty box when Australia seemed to be running out of ideas and energy in the heat.

Viduka hit a vicious drive goalwards through the wall, and he cut a slightly disconsolate figure when he saw Kawaguchi make yet another fine save.

As at Telstra Stadium last November, when he feared his penalty miss in the shootout against Uruguay had cost Australia, his crestfallen face was soon to turn a radiant smile.

Australia next plays World Cup champion Brazil in Munich on June 19 (AEST), before lining up against Croatia in Stuttgart on June 23 (AEST).

Brazil and Croatia open their campaigns against each other in Berlin tomorrow.



AUSTRALIA 3 (Cahill 84, 89; Aloisi 90)
JAPAN 1 (Nakamura 26)
Referee: Essam Abd El Fatah (Egy)
Crowd: 45,800 at Fritz-Walter-Stadion, Kaiserslautern.

AUSTRALIA: Mark Schwarzer; Brett Emerton, Lucas Neill, Craig Moore (Josh Kennedy 60), Scott Chipperfield; Vince Grella, Jason Culina, Luke Wilkshire (John Aloisi, 75), Marco Bresciano (Tim Cahill, 52), Harry Kewell; Mark Viduka (captain).
JAPAN: Yoshikatsu Kawaguchi; Yuichi Komano, Tsuneyasu Miyamoto (captain), Hidetoshi Nakata; Naohiro Takahara; Shunsuke Nakamura, Atsushi Yanasigawa (Shinji Ono, 78), Alsessandro 'Alex' Santos, Takashi Fukunushi; Keisuke Tsuboi (Teruyuki Monawa, 56), Yuji Nakazawa.

Schwarzer: Referee admitted error
Players: Socceroos hail Guus the genius
Analysis: Hiddink plays trump at right time
Respect: Brazil impressed by Socceroos
Zico: Japan not out of it
NEWS.com.au: Fans paint it green and gold


FOX SPORTS
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  #49  
Old June 13, 2006, 04:33 AM
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Brazil set to enter the fray
By Chris Wright
June 13, 2006

ENTER the heavyweight. Tonight sees the entrance of the team we all want to see.

Berlin's renovated Olympic Stadium is the suitably grand venue as the boys from Brazil open their quest for a sixth title, with unpredictable Croatia the opponent in its opening match in Group F.

And no one will be watching with more interest than Australia, who plays Brazil in its next match.

The great Brazil sides past weigh heavily on the squad of today, but the bulk of this year's vintage already have winners' medals from 2002.

As four years ago, Ronaldo is the focus of controversy.

The striker currently shares the Brazilian record of 12 World Cup goals and is closing in on German Gerd Muller's all-time World Cup record of 14.

But there are allegations he is overweight and he has been dogged by blisters and a fever all week.

Even Brazil President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has asked about Ronaldo's weight. Brazil's coach Carlos Parreira says that 29-year-old Ronaldo's "body has changed. He is not the youngster he was in 1994".

In another injury-ravaged season for Real Madrid, Ronaldo has not looked the player he was either. But they said the same thing four years ago after a string of serious knee injuries - yet he scored eight goals to lead his country to glory.

"I only want respect," said Ronaldo - and a goal against Croatia would doubtless mean all would be well with his world again, blisters or no blisters.

Another man who cannot be overlooked in a side bursting with creativity is world player of the year Ronaldinho, who has fulfilled in spades the potential he showed back in Asia.

The 26-year-old from Porto Alegre has turned football into high art this season, carrying Barcelona to the Champions League title as well as the Spanish championship for a second straight season.

Add AC Milan playmaker Kaka and Inter Milan hotshot Adriano - and going forward Brazil look unstoppable.

Brazil is alone in appearing in every World Cup. With wins in 1958, 1962, 1970, 1994 and 2002 and runner-up finishes in 1950 and 1998 their pedigree is unmatched, making them the clear 9/4 favourite.

The favourite's tag is not one worn lightly, however.

"It is always the same. Brazil will win it. Brazil are the favourites ... the other teams want to take the attention off themselves and the pressure," Kaka - who was only a bit-part player in 2002 - complained.

The Croatians will not arrive as lambs to the slaughter but their squad has been battling a mysterious virus since arriving in Germany last week.

Doctors could not determine the cause of the infection, which has struck down stars including Darijo Simic, Ivica Olic, Bosko Balaban, Dado Prso, Stjepan Tomas, Anthony Seric and Joseph Didulica.

The Daily Telegraph
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  #50  
Old June 13, 2006, 06:48 AM
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in australia, the game is in really odd time..

korea's game is in 11 oclock...thats kind of ok...

france vs swiss is at 2 am....rite when i am snoring out loud..

nd the big match brazil vs croatia is 5 am......the hours couldnt get anymore horrible...

all the games are in this time slot....11pm, 2am and 5am..

i am sure every one located in australia is feeling the same dillema...except those living in perth or adeliade or darwin...
 

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