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Wednesday kickaround

Another heavenly morning in Jozi. (Think October in Washington.) With the World Cup two days away, the city is buzzing -- literally -- with anticipation, and at noon, all South Africans are encouraged to step outside and blow their vuvuzelas. If ever mankind is to make contact with extraterrestrial life, it will be today.

*Read my print edition story about Oguchi Onyewu and the intrigue surrounding his possible starting role against England in the World Cup opener.

*Uh-oh. Spanish genius Andres Iniesta will have a scan today for a leg injury.

*Arjen Robben will probably miss the Netherlands' opener against Denmark.

*Nelson Mandela seems likely to make a brief appearance at the World Cup opener.

*Portugal's easy goals in a 3-0 victory over Mozambique:

By Steve Goff  |  June 9, 2010; 5:10 AM ET
Categories:  2010 World Cup , Netherlands , South Africa , Spain , U.S. men's national team  | Tags: Andres Iniesta, Johannesburg, Nelson Mandela, Oguchi Onyewu, World Cup, vuvuzelas  
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Next: Donovan: 'I am prepared for this moment'


At htis point, Nelson Mandela is more match fit than many of the star players. This must be the most injury-plagued WC in the history of civilization on this and all planets.

It seems that we have played a harder tune-up schedule that many of the finalists. Other countries have played minnows, SA clubs, and U10 rec teams.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 9, 2010 6:02 AM | Report abuse

Does anyone want to play in this World Cup?

I-270, stop showing everyone up with your early morning posts.

Posted by: grubbsbl | June 9, 2010 7:35 AM | Report abuse

If you are talking strength of tune-up schedule, you would have to go with Mexico: at Wembley,at Italy, about 10 matches. And boy-oh-boy, do they seem ready, having outplayed(on the field) both It.&Engl. by 64-36% or so possession. I watched both games on tv,and Mexico almost looked like Spain or Brazil.(Note: I said "almost", and they did not finish their chances). Coach P.

Posted by: bechtoldpk | June 9, 2010 7:37 AM | Report abuse

BTW, that's the injury that kept Iniesta out this year. So they are saying it is minor, but it is a recurrence.

Posted by: Reignking | June 9, 2010 7:51 AM | Report abuse

Does anyone have any predicted starting lineups for teams? I want to make some picks, but I don't know most of the players.

Posted by: Reignking | June 9, 2010 7:54 AM | Report abuse

Not my fault grubbsbi, I wake up at 4:30 and can't get back to sleep (alarm is set for 6). With Steve and Liz posting from SA, I know I'll have something to read that early.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | June 9, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

I think all of the big teams having to play meaningful games to the last week (or there about) in their seasons is coming back to haunt these stars. There could be more injuries as the wear-and-tear in the high alititude grabs hold of these top stars as the tournament progresses. Ther will be many an upset to deeper into the tourney - that's why getting out of the group stage could get us some very favorable matchups this year which sould help us go deep into this tourney.


Posted by: Kosh2 | June 9, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

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