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July 12, 2010

Spain defeat the Netherlands 1-0 in extra time to win 2010 FIFA World Cup

Spain defeat the Netherlands 1-0 in extra time to win 2010 FIFA World Cup

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Monday, July 12, 2010

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The 2010 FIFA World Cup finals were played in Johannesburg’s Soccer City stadium.
Image: Tim Boyd.

Spain defeated the Netherlands in extra time 1–0 to win this year’s FIFA World Cup. The winning goal came in the last few minutes of the match, which saw thirteen yellow cards and one red card.

Yesterday’s win marked Spain’s first World Cup victory, in their first World Cup final appearance, making the Spanish team the eighth distinct team to have won the championship since it began in 1930. It was the second time that the European champion for that year won the World Cup as well, the first being West Germany‘s victory in 1974. It was also the first time that a European team emerged as the World Cup victors on a continent other than Europe. For the Dutch, it was the third time they have lost in the World Cup finals, having done so in 1974 and 1978.

The final match, played in Johannesburg‘s Soccer City stadium, stayed tied at 0–0 for all of regulation time. Called “a very difficult match” by Spanish coach Vicente del Bosque, the game started with a slow first half. The Dutch had an opportunity to take the lead in the second half, but Arjen Robben‘s shots were blocked by Spanish captain Iker Casillas. The Netherlands were forced to play with only ten players near the end of extra time after John Heitinga was kicked out of the game.

The winning shot of the match came from Spanish midfielder Andres Iniesta in the 116th minute, just four minutes from the end of extra time. He managed to kick the ball past Dutch goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg from just 8 metres (26.2 feet) away. If Iniesta had not made the goal, and game stayed scoreless until the end of extra time, the game would have been decided by a penalty shoot-out.

Spain’s victory was correctly predicted by the oracular animal Paul the Octopus. Paul’s 2010 FIFA World Cup prediction record stayed at 100 per cent as a result.



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  • “‘Psychic’ octopus backs Spain to win World Cup” — Wikinews, July 9, 2010

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July 8, 2010

Spain advances to first World Cup Finals

Spain advances to first World Cup Finals

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Thursday, July 8, 2010

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Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban, South Africa
Image: Marc Forrest.
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Spain defeated Germany 1–0 in the semifinals to advance Spain to its first World Cup Finals in its history. Played in Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban, South Africa, the game was a re-do of the 2008 European Championship final, in which Spain also won 1–0. About 60,960 people, including Spain’s Queen Sofía, were in attendance.

The game got off to an interesting start after an Italian fan invaded the pitch in the fourth minute, briefly interrupting the game. A first half dominated both by the German defense and the increasingly powerful offense kept both teams scoreless at halftime. Spain used the second half to threaten the German goal. In the 57th minute, Spain’s David Villa came within inches of scoring on an Andrés Iniesta cross, and Sergio Ramos was equally close to convert Xabi Alonso’s pass. Carles Puyol scored the lone goal in the 73rd minute by heading in Xavi’s corner kick. As the game came to an end, the German team was visibly distraught, while fans of the Spanish team partied until late at night, waving flags and singing “Ole! Ole! Ole!”.

Villa later said, “This is one of the greatest moments for Spain, for us to be in the final of the World Cup, it’s history. And we want to make more history in the final.”

In addition to being Spain’s first finals appearance, the Netherlands’ defeat of Uruguay on Tuesday advanced the Netherlands to the finals as well. As neither team has won the World Cup before, this match-up ensures that either the Netherlands or Spain will come out having won the World Cup for the first time. It will also be the two teams’ first ever match against each other in the World Cup. Uruguay and Germany will play each other for third place on Saturday at 18:30 UTC, while the finals will be on Sunday 18:30 UTC.


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July 7, 2010

Netherlands beats Uruguay 3-2 in FIFA World Cup semifinals

Netherlands beats Uruguay 3-2 in FIFA World Cup semifinals

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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

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The Netherlands will either face Spain or Germany in the 2010 FIFA World Cup final on Sunday, July 11.
Image: Marc Forrest.
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The Netherlands defeated Uruguay in the semifinals of the on Tuesday. Uruguay was the last South American team holdout in the tournament. This year’s World Cup is is being hosted by South Africa.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst scored for the Dutch with a 35-yard shot in the eighteenth minute, while Uruguay’s Diego Forlan scored his fourth goal in this year’s World Cup to tie in the 41st minute.

Howver, after the Netherlands’ coach Bert van Marwijk replaced Demy de Zeeuw with attacker Rafael van der Vaart at halftime, the Dutch went on a roll, with Wesley Sneijder and Arjen Robben both scoring in the second half. They scored in quick sucession, in the 70th and 73rd minutes, respectively. Uruguay later narrowed the Dutch’s lead to one point in injury time, but the orange-clad Dutch beat back late Uruguayan pressure after the injury time goal was scored.

The Dutch team was jubilant after their semifinal win. “This is unforgettable,” Sneijder said. “It was a tough fight and toward the end we complicated matters. Sunday we play in the World Cup final. I have to get used to that.”

Coach Bert van Marwijk was also happy. “This is very special. After 32 years we play the final again. Such a small country. We can be very proud of this.” Van Marwijk has been coach of the Netherlands for two years.

Fans of the Netherlands’ soccer team were wildly celebrating too. 45 minutes after the small Western European country won, many fans returned to Cape Town’s Green Point Stadium to see the players do a victory dance. Many of the fans beat drums and cheered “Holland! Holland! Holland!”

The Dutch will face either Spain or Germany Sunday in the World Cup finals. This will be their first World Cup final appearance since 1978, when they lost 3-1 to Argentina, who was playing on their home turf. The Dutch also lost the championship in 1974. Uruguay hadn’t appeared in the semifinals since 1970. However, they won the World Cup in 1930, and again in 1950, but they have since suffered a 60-year drought, which continues to this day.



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June 25, 2010

Journalist accuses Algerian footballer of assault after World Cup exit

Journalist accuses Algerian footballer of assault after World Cup exit

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Friday, June 25, 2010

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Witnesses say Algerian footballer Rafik Saïfi slapped Asma Halifi, a woman journalist from his home country with whom he has had a year-long feud, after Algeria’s defeat by the United States on Wednesday evening. Halifi filed a complaint with FIFA regarding the assault.

The incident was witnessed by fellow journalist Richard Connelly of the BBC World Service. He said that “Rafik Saifi slapped the face of journalist Asma Halifi. She hit him back as a reflex. He then threw a bottle of sports drink which missed and had to be restrained from attacking her again.”

Speaking about the attack, Halifi said that she intends to make a complaint to the police and to FIFA, the world governing board of football. She also spoke about the on-going dispute between herself and Saifi. The footballer objected to an interview she had translated for Competition, an Algerian newspaper, she told the BBC.

The Algerian Football Federation had no comment to make about the incident. FIFA confirmed that it had received Halifi’s complaint and would investigate.

Algeria were making their third and final appearance at the . They drew in Group C along with England, Slovenia and the United States but failed to make it past the group stage.


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June 15, 2010

World Cup workers walk off the job

World Cup workers walk off the job – Wikinews, the free news source

World Cup workers walk off the job

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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

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World Cup security personnel walked off the job Sunday, citing contract violations.
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Following a labour dispute involving soccer match stewards, South African police have taken over security duties for World Cup games in Cape Town and Durban. Security personnel staged a sit-down protest in the Durban stadium on Sunday, and walked off the job before yesterday’s match in Cape Town.

The security workers are in a contract dispute with their employer, Stallion Security Consortium Pty (Ltd). Workers claim they were promised as much as seven times as much pay for a shift than what they are currently receiving.

Following the match between Germany and Australia on Sunday, workers staged a sit-in on the grounds of the Durban stadium and were attacked by police with tear gas and rubber bullets.

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The 2010 organizing committee claims they are working on resolving this dispute.

Some South African unions have threatened to severely disrupt the country during the World Cup if labour demands are not met. South Africa currently has one of the largest income disparities in the world.

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June 13, 2010

United States and England open World Cup with 1–1 draw

United States and England open World Cup with 1–1 draw

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Sunday, June 13, 2010

The teams warm up prior to the match at Royal Bafokeng Stadium.

The United States and England opened their 2010 FIFA World Cup campaigns on Saturday with a 1–1 draw in front of a crowd of over 38,000 at Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg, South Africa.

England captain Steven Gerrard put the English in front early with his goal in the fourth minute. The goal came as Gerrard was able to slip in behind the U.S. defense in the middle of the penalty box. The United States equalized in the 40th minute off a long-distance shot by midfielder Clint Dempsey. The shot, from roughly 25 yards from goal, seemed like an easy stop until it bounced off English goalkeeper Robert Green and in for a goal. Both teams had several chances to earn the go-ahead goal in the second half, including a shot by Jozy Altidore that was deflected by Green and bounced off the goal post. A couple of saves by U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard also played a large role in the second half.

The draw means both teams earn one point from the match which temporarily placed them in first place in Group C. Both teams play their second game of the World Cup on June 18 when the United States will face Slovenia followed by England playing Algeria.

Other 2010 FIFA World Cup action on Saturday saw Korean Republic get off to a strong start defeating Greece 2–0, while Argentina blanked Nigeria 1–0.

On Sunday the first round of games in Group C concludes when Algeria and Slovenia face off. All four Group D teams will also be in action with Serbia taking on Ghana and Germany facing Australia.



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June 11, 2010

Nelson Mandela\’s great-granddaughter dies in car crash

Nelson Mandela’s great-granddaughter dies in car crash

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Friday, June 11, 2010

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File photo of Nelson Mandela, whose great-granddaughter just died in a car crash

The great-granddaughter of former South Africa President has died in a car crash following a concert to open the .

The Nelson Mandela Foundation released a statement which said that thirteen-year-old Zenani Mandela, who celebrated her birthday on June 9, died in a single vehicle accident and that no one else was injured. The statement continued: “The family has asked for privacy as they mourn this tragedy.”

The driver of the vehicle of which Zenani Mandela was a passenger has been arrested and charged with drunk driving. He may also face culpable homicide charges, according to police.

South Africa has a poor road safety record and ranks ninth in the world for traffic fatalities. Traffic safety is feared to be a threat of injury to supporters to the World Cup.



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June 10, 2010

Football: Chelsea confirm Joe Cole and Michael Ballack departure

Football: Chelsea confirm Joe Cole and Michael Ballack departure

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Thursday, June 10, 2010

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Joe Cole signed for Chelsea for £6.6 million (US$9.55 million).
Image: John Dobson.

Chelsea, a football club based in London, United Kingdom, have confirmed that Joe Cole and Michael Ballack will be leaving on free transfers during the summer transfer window.

Chelsea, the current Premier League champions, reportedly stated they did not wish to offer Cole, an English international currently with the country’s national team at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, another contract for next season. They declined to offer Germany captain 33-year-old Ballack a new deal; the player had been missing out on the World Cup with injury.

Cole has been at the club since joining from fellow London side West Ham United in 2003, while Ballack’s previous club was Bayern Munich of Germany, arriving under José Mourinho.

Ballack was claimed to be “extremely surprised” by the news, having been on holiday in Miami, United States at the time of being informed, according to agent Michael Becker. Ballack had previously rejected a reduced-wage, one-year contract, and was once the highest-earner at Chelsea, with a weekly wage of £121,000 (US$175,123).

Several sources believe that many top finishers in the Premier League, including runners-up Manchester United, are keen to speak to 28-year-old Cole, as he has been free to initiate negotiations since January. However, no deal has yet been confirmed to have started.



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December 5, 2009

Final draw sets groups for FIFA World Cup 2010

Final draw sets groups for FIFA World Cup 2010

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Saturday, December 5, 2009

2010 FIFA World Cup
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Other 2010 FIFA World Cup stories
  • 12 July 2010: Spain defeat the Netherlands 1-0 in extra time to win 2010 FIFA World Cup
  • 9 July 2010: ‘Psychic’ octopus backs Spain to win World Cup
  • 8 July 2010: Spain advances to first World Cup Finals
  • 7 July 2010: Netherlands beats Uruguay 3-2 in FIFA World Cup semifinals
  • 27 June 2010: 2010 FIFA World Cup: arrivederci Italia!
More info from Wikipedia
  • 2010 FIFA World Cup
  • 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification
  • 2010 FIFA World Cup schedule

The FIFA final draw, which determined team positioning in the 2010 FIFA World Cup, was held Friday in Cape Town, South Africa. The globally televised event, which featured traditional African music and dance, is estimated to have been watched by as many as 200 million people around the world. FIFA Secretary General Jérôme Valcke and South African-born actress Charlize Theron announced the random selection of teams for their round-robin tournament style groupings. Also introduced during the ceremony was Adidas’ official 2010 Match Ball, Jabulani, a name meaning ‘to celebrate’ in Zulu.

The final group pairings are:

Group A: South Africa, Mexico, Uruguay, France

Group B: Argentina, Nigeria, Korea Republic, Greece

Group C: England, USA, Algeria, Slovenia

Group D: Germany, Australia, Serbia, Ghana

Group E: Netherlands, Denmark, Japan, Cameroon

Group F: Italy, Paraguay, New Zealand, Slovakia

Group G: Brazil, Korea DPR, Côte d’Ivoire, Portugal

Group H: Spain, Switzerland, Honduras, Chile



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December 3, 2009

FIFA to make changes after Thierry Henry handball

FIFA to make changes after Thierry Henry handball

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Thursday, December 3, 2009

The FIFA logo.

FIFA, the world governing body for association football, yesterday announced it was setting up a working group to conduct an inquiry into the introduction of assistant referees and technology into the world game, in the wake of the reactions to the controversial handball committed by French captain Thierry Henry during the 18 November France vs Republic of Ireland qualifying play-off game for the 2010 World Cup.

Yesterday, at the request of FIFA President Sepp Blatter, FIFA held an emergency meeting of its 24 member Executive Committee in Cape Town, to look into various issues which had recently affected the world game, including the Henry handball.

After the meeting, FIFA announced it will set up an inquiry to investigate the introduction of goal line technology and the global experimentation of using additional referee’s assistants to officiate during a match, already being trialled in Europe. FIFA did not however take the widely expected action of announcing there would be extra assistants in place for the upcoming 2010 World Cup, stating this was “too soon” to be made possible. Blatter also re-iterated his long-standing opposition to the adoption of video refereeing used in many other sports.

Blatter confirmed yesterday that Thierry Henry would be investigated by the FIFA Disciplinary Committee. Blatter also apologised to the FAI for his handling of their request to become the 33rd team at the 2010 World Cup.

Henry handball incident

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There was a worldwide reaction after the Henry handball incident, which was missed by the referee Martin Hansson, with FIFA coming under pressure to make changes to avoid such a recurrence.

Henry’s illegal handball had led to the decisive goal being scored in the game by William Gallas, which saw France qualify for the World Cup ahead of the Republic of Ireland. The Irish football federation (“FAI”) first called on FIFA and the French for a replay, but this was rejected by FIFA. They later requested to be allowed to be given an extra place at the World Cup.

Yesterday, Blatter appealed to all players and officials that would be appearing in the upcoming 2010 World Cup to observe the principles of fair play. Henry had been criticised for admitting the handball after the game, but not informing the referee at the time.

Refereeing working group

Sepp Blatter in 2007

Blatter said of the crisis in refereeing in the world game that:

The committee was of the opinion that we are at a crossroads: where shall we go with refereeing in the future? The game at the highest level is so tense that it is impossible for one referee and his assistants to see everything…The executive committee came to the decision that the referee is not any longer consistent with the quality and the speed of the game, and the interest of television and 32 cameras as we will have in the World Cup

To address these issues, FIFA announced they were going to set up a committee of inquiry to “look at technology or additional persons”. Blatter confirmed the inquiry would involve a cross section of FIFA personnel, involving the referee, football, technical and medical committees.

On the subject of assistant referees, FIFA said:

… the Executive Committee expressed its support for the current experiment of including two additional referees behind the goal lines. However, the committee stressed that it would be too soon to implement this new system at the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa

Blatter said FIFA was not ignoring the ongoing trials of extra assistant referees, which would continue in the Europa League into the 2010 knock-out stages, but the executive was of the opinion that with these trials only occurring on one continent, any experiment should “be carried out globally” before being adopted in a World Cup, and that the six months remaining until the 2010 World Cup starts was too short a time to prove any such system. The 2010 tournament, to be held in June and July, would instead remain with the normal FIFA appointed officiating team consisting of four officials led by the match referee.

On the issue of what types of technology might be investigated, Blatter confirmed that two companies looking at goal-line technology were due to report to the rule-making International Football Association Board (IFAB) in March. According to AFP, the meeting also ‘ruled out’ the adoption of the type of video refereeing as used in rugby, cricket and tennis.’, while Blatter stated such a system would ‘damage the flow’ of the game and “take away talking points”.

Investigation of Henry

Thierry Henry in 2008, in his club colours of FC Barcelona of Spain

FIFA confirmed the FIFA Disciplinary Committee would “examine the case of Thierry Henry related to the play-off match”. Blatter said:

I have not said that Thierry Henry will be punished, I have said that Thierry Henry will be examined by the disciplinary committee of FIFA”, but he added “it was a blatant unfair playing and was shown all around the world, but I don’t know what the outcome will be, let them make the decision. Fair play must be maintained in our game

No timetable was given for when the Disciplinary Committee, headed by Swiss lawyer Marcel Mathier, might make their decision on Henry. According to the Associated Press, the committee has the ‘authority to impose a one-match suspension on Henry, which would take effect at the start of the World Cup in June.’ According to the BBC, there was no certainty that Henry would even be banned if found guilty.

Apology to the FAI

After FIFA rejected an Irish request for a replay of the game, the FAI had asked Sepp Blatter to privately raise the issue at the FIFA meeting of whether the Irish could be entered into the 2010 World Cup as a 33rd team. According to the BBC, the FAI ‘knew all along that there was very little chance of their request being granted but had decided to make it anyway on principle’. The FAI withdrew it before the meeting, after Blatter made their request public during his opening address of the Soccerex conference in Johannesburg on 29 November. Blatter yesterday apologised to the FAI for how he had handled their request, saying:

In this connection I would like to express my regrets – my regrets to a wrong interpretation of what I have said in the Soccerex. I have only announced they have asked it, but the presence in the Soccerex they don’t took it very, I would say, seriously. So I regret what I have created and especially towards the Irish Football Association, I am sorry about these headlines going around the world. Contrary I have nothing against the Irish, they were very sporting people when they came to FIFA and it is a pity that it has been now communicated in this way. Sorry again.”



Related news

  • “Ireland requests replay of FIFA World Cup play-off with France” — Wikinews, November 20, 2009

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