World Cup Mock Draw

December 3, 2009

So the World Cup draw is less than 24 hours away. Players, coaches, celebrities are in Cape Town, South Africa preparing for what will take place tomorrow. We at International Football Talk have been having a Mock Draw marathon this week. With all the possible procedures FIFA may use. FIFA are using the same procedure they used in 2006 for the draw. However, Netherlands will be seeded and France will be not as FIFA decided to use the world rankings for seeding purposes instead of a formula of world rankings and past World Cup performance. With that said I did a complete draw this time around. Including group positioning with selecting A2, A3, A4, B2, B3, B4, etc. to determing when and where games will be played. I will layout the entire schedule below if FIFA were to draw this exactly. All times are local South African time. South Africa is 6 hours ahead of eastern time during the summer. So matches on the east coast would be 7:30a.m., 10a.m., and 2:30p.m. From there you can figure out game times depending on where you live.

Pot A – South Africa, Argentina, Brazil, England, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain
Pot B – Australia, Japan, North Korea, South Korea, New Zeland, Honduras, Mexico, United States
Pot C – Algeria, Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay
Pot D – Denmark, France, Greece, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland

Group A
– South Africa
– Denmark
– Honduras
– Paraguay

South Africa v. Denmark Friday, June 11th 4p.m. @Johannesburg, Soccer City
Honduras v. Paraguay Friday. June 11th 8:30p.m. @Cape Town

South Africa v. Honduras Wednesday, June 16th 8:30p.m. @Pretoria
Paraguay v. Denmark Thursday, June 17th 1:30p.m. @Polokwane

Denmark v. Honduras Tuesday, June 22nd 4p.m. @Runstenberg
Paraguay v. South Africa Tuesday, June 22nd 4p.m. @Bloemfontein

Group B
– Argentina
– Cameroon
– Greece
– New Zealand

Argentina v. Cameroon Saturday, June 12th 1:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Ellis Park
Greece v. New Zealand Saturday, June 12th 4p.m. @Port Elizabeth

Argentina v. Greece Saturday, June 17th 4p.m. @Johannesburg, Soccer City
New Zealand v. Cameroon Saturday, June 17th 8:30p.m. @Bloemfontein

Cameroon v. Greece Tuesday, June 22nd 8:30p.m. @Polokwane
New Zealand v. Argentina Tuesday, June 22nd 8:30p.m. @Durban

Group C
– Spain
– Slovakia
– North Korea
– Chile

Spain v. Slovakia Saturday, June 12th 8:30p.m. @Rustenberg
North Kora v. Chile Sunday, June 13th 1:30p.m. @Polokwane

Spain v. North Korea Friday, June 18th 4p.m. @Cape Town
Chile v. Slovakia Friday, June 18th 8:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Ellis Park

Slovakia v. North Korea Wednesday, June 23rd 4p.m. @Pretoria
Chile v. Spain Wednesday, June 23rd 4p.m. @Port Elizabeth

Group D
– Netherlands
– Ivory Coast
– Portugal
– United States

Netherlands v. Ivory Coast Sunday, June 13th 4p.m. @Durban
Portugal v. Unites States Sunday, June 13th 8:30p.m. @Pretoria

Netherlands v. Portugal Friday, June 18th 1:30p.m.@Port Elizabeth
United States v. Ivory Coast Saturday, June 19th 1:30p.m. @Rustenberg

Ivory Coast v. Portugal Wednesday, June 23rd 8:30p.m. @Nelspruit
United States v. Netherlands Wednesday, June 23rd 8:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Soccer City

Group E
– England
– Nigeria
– Australia
– Switzerland

England v. Nigeria Monday, June 14th 1:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Soccer City
Australia v. Switzerland Monday, June 14th 4p.m. @Bloemfontein

England v. Australia Saturday, June 19th 4p.m. @Durban
Switzerland, v. Nigeria Satuday, June 19th 8:30p.m. @Pretoria

Nigeria v. Australia Thursday, June 24th 8:30p.m. @Rustenberg
Switzerland v. England Thursday, June 24th 8:30p.m. @Cape Town

Group F
– Italy
– Uruguay
– France
– South Korea

Italy v. Uruguay Monday, June 14th 8:30p.m. @Cape Town
France v. South Korea Tuesday, June 15th 8:30p.m. @Rustenberg

Italy v. France Sunday, June 20th 1:30p.m. @Nelspruit
South Korea v. Uruguay Sunday, June 20th 4p.m. @Bloemfontein

Uruguay v. France Thursday, June 24th 4p.m. @Polokwane
South Korea v. Italy Thursday, June 24th 4p.m. @Johannesburg, Ellis Park

Group G
– Germany
– Slovenia
– Mexico
– Ghana

Germany v. Slovenia Tuesday, June 15th 4p.m. @Johannesburg, Ellis Park
Mexico v. Ghana Tuesday, June 15th 8:30p.m. @Port Elizabeth

Germany v. Mexico Sunday, June 20th 8:30p.m. @Johannesbrg, Soccer City
Ghana v. Slovenia Monday, June 21st 1:30p.m. @Cape Town

Slovenia v. Mexico Friday, June 25th 4p.m. @Nelspruit
Ghana v. Germany Friday, June 15th 4p.m. @Durban

Group H
– Brazil
– Serbia
– Algeria
– Japan

Brazil v. Serbia Wednesday, June 16th 1:30p.m. @Durban
Algeria v. Japan Wednesday, June 16th 4p.m. @Nelspruit

Brazil v. Algeria Monday, June 21st 4p.m. @Port Elizabeth
Japan v. Serbia Monday, June 21st 8:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Ellis Park

Serbia v. Algeria Friday, June 25th 8:30p.m. @Bloemfontein
Japan v. Brazil Friday, 25th 8:30p.m. @Pretoria

Round of 16 (in bracket order)
A1 v. B2 Saturday, June 26th 4p.m. @Port Elizabeth
C1 v. D2 Saturday, June 26th 8:30p.m. @Rustenberg
E1 v. F2 Monday, June 28th 4p.m. @Durban
G1 v. H2 Monday, June 28th 8:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Ellis Park
B1 v. A2 Sunday, June 27th 8:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Soccer City
D1 v. C2 Sunday, June 27th 4p.m. @Bloemfontein
F1 v. E2 Tuesday, June 29th 4p.m. @Pretoria
H1 v. G2 Tuesday, June 29th 8:30p.. @Cape Town

Quarterfinals (in bracket order)
A1/B2 v. C1/D2 Friday, July 2nd 8:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Soccer City
E1/F2 v. G1/H2 Friday, July 2nd 4p.m. @Port Elizabeth
B1/A2 v. D1/C2 Saturday, July 3rd 4p.m. @Cape Town
F1/E2 v. H1/G2 Saturday, July 3rd 8:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Ellis Park

July 2nd winners Tuesday, July 6th 8:30p.m. @Cape Town
July 3rd winners Wednesay, July 7th 8:30p.m. @Durban

3rd place playoff
Semifinals losers Saturday, July 10th 8:30p.m. @Port Elizabeth

World Cup Final
Semifinal winners Sunday, July 11th 8:30p.m. @Johannesburg, Soccer City


World Cup Draw: All You Need To Know

November 28, 2009

Ok so FIFA will decide shortly how they will allocate teams to certain pots. Here are the most likely scenarios.

Option 1 would be the same format they used in 2006 except this time they wouldn’t need a special pot because there will be 8 unseeded UEFA teams. Pot A would contain the seeded teams, Pot B the UEFA teams, Pot C the African and South American teams, but to avoid teams from the same confederation ending up in the same group South Africa would draw from South America and the two seeded South American teams would draw from Africa before the South American and African teams would be placed into Pot C. Finally, Pot D would contain Asia, Oceania, and CONCACAF teams.
Pot A – South Africa, Italy, Argentina, Brazil, England, France, Germany, Spain
Pot B – Denmark, Greece, Netherlands, Potugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland
Pot C – Algeria, Camerron, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Chile, Paraguay, Uruaguay
Pot D – Australia, Japan, Korea DPR, Korea Republic, New Zealand, Honduras, Mexico, USA

Option 2 would be similar to option 1 but Pot C and Pot D would change. FIFA might use this since this time around the remianing unseeded South American teams have a lower combined ranking than the CONCACAF teams so they would group CONCACAF and Africa together to create a stronger pot C and a weaker Pot D creating the likelihood of more balanced groups. This would make Pot D Asia, Oceania, and South America. In this scenario South Africa would draw from CONCACAF before Pot C teams are placed in pot together and Argentina and Brazil would draw from Asia/Oceania before Pot D teams are placed together. Again this is to avoid teams in same confederation to be put into same group.
Pot A – South Africa, Italy, Argentina, Brazil, England, France, Germany, Spain
Pot B – Denmark, Greece, Netherlands, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland
Pot C – Algeria, Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Honduras, Mexico, USA
Pot D – Australia, Japan, Korea DPR, Korea Republic, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay

Option 3 is a little different. You would still have four pots but not all pots would have 8 teams. Pots A and B would stay the same, but Pot C and Pot D would be differeny and more based on geography. Pot C would conteain teams from Asia/Oceania and Africa, while Pot D would contain teams from the Americas. However Pot C would be split at first with teams from Asia/Oceania and Africa because in this scenario every group picks one team from each pot with the exception of the groups containing Argentian and Brazil as they would draw two teams from Pot C. One from the Asia/Oceania side and one from the African side.
Pot A – South Africa, Italy, Argentian, Brazil, England, France, Germany, Spain
Pot B – Denmark, Greece, Netherlands, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland
Pot C – Algeria, Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Australia, Japan, Korea DPR, Korea Republic, New Zealand
Pot D – Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay, Honduras, Mexico, USA

Option 4 is similar to the draw procedure used in the UEFA Champions League. Teams would be ranked 1-32. Placed into 4 pots. However, still the teams from the same confederation cannot be drawn together would still apply much like teams from the same country can’t be drawn into the same group. Pot A would contain 1-8, Pot B 9-16, Pot C 17-24, and Pot D 25-32. I ranked the teams based on the seeding formula and not the FIFA rankings.
Pot A – South Africa, Italy, Germany, Brazil, Spain, England, France, Argentina
Pot B – Portugal, Netherlands, Mexico, USA, Switzerland, Paraguay, Ghana, Cameroon
Pot C- Korea Republic, Japan, Australia, Ivory Coast, Greece, Nigeria, Serbia, Uruguay
Pot D – Denmark, Chile, Slovenia, Honduras, Slovakia, Algeria, New Zealand, Korea DPR

I hope this helped with the possible scenarios of what FIFA might do and not confuse you anymore. If you follow the instructions its fairly easy to come up with mock draws. The following are mock draws under each option that FIFA could opt for.

Option 1 Mock Draw
Group A – South Africa, Denmark, Paraguay, Australia
Group B – Argentina, Slovakia, Ivory Coast, Mexico
Group C – Germany, Serbia, Uruguay, Korea DPR
Group D – Brazil, Greece, Nigeria, Honduras
Group E – France, Portugal, Ghana, Japan
Group F – Italy, Switzerland, Algeria, USA
Group G – Spain Slovenia, Chile, New Zealand
Group H – England, Netherlands, Cameroon, Korea Republic

Option 2 Mock Draw
Group A – South Africa, Netherlands, Honduras, Chile
Group B – England, Serbia, Ghana, Uruguay
Group C – France, Slovakia, Mexico, Korea DPR
Group D – Argentina, Portugal, Algeria, Australia
Group E – Spain, Denmark, Cameroon, Korea Republic
Group F – Italy, Slovenia, Ivory Coast, Paraguay
Group G – Germany, Switzerland, Nigeria, New Zealand
Group H – Brazil, Greece, USA, Japan

Option 3 Mock Draw
Group A – South Africa, Serbia, Korea DPR, Mexico
Group B – Spain, Greece, Nigeria, Chile
Group C – England, Denmark, Ghana, Paraguay
Group D – France, Slovakia, Ivory Coast, Honduras
Group E – Germany, Netherlands, Korea Republic, Uruguay
Group F – Italy, Slovenia, Australia, USA
Group G – Brazil, Switzerland, Japan, Cameroon
Group H – Argentina, Portugal, New Zeland, Algeria

Option 4 Mock Draw
Group A – South Africa, Paraguay, Greece, Honduras
Group B – Spain, Portugal, Uruguay, Algeria
Group C – Brazil, Switzerland, Ivory Coaat, New Zealand
Group D – Argentina, Cameroon, Australia, Denmark
Group E – Germany, Mexico, Nigeria, Slovakia
Group F – Italy, Netherlands, Korea Republic, Chile
Group G – France, Ghana, Japan, Slovenia
Group H – England, USA, Serbia, Korea DPR

The beggining of a partnership

October 21, 2009

World Football Talk and International Football Talk have partnered up to create an informative information filled blog for each site. Please visit

World Cup Qualifying UEFA Playoff Draw Preview

October 19, 2009

The main event in the footballing world this coming Monday, 19 October takes place at Home of FIFA in Zurich, with the spotlight focused on the eight European nations who have claimed places in the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ qualifying play-offs. The draw for the final eliminators, to be played on a home-and-away basis on 14 and 18 November, will be held at 14:00 local time, with France, Portugal, Russia and Greece entering it as the seeded teams.

Fans, media representatives and football lovers around the globe can stay abreast of the very latest developments and follow the draw ceremony as it happens, by tuning in to our live stream here at the world governing body’s official website. The eight remaining nations have battled their way through to the play-offs, and will now go head-to-head for the four remaining spots at the 2010 finals:

France, runners-up at the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany, are determined to book their ticket to South Africa via the alternative route of the play-offs as they strive for a 13th appearance at the game’s showpiece event. The French were forced to settle for second place in European Group 7 behind a very impressive Serbia. UEFA EURO 2008 semi-finalists Russia are the second of the continent’s heavyweights going into the hat on Monday. The nine-time FIFA World Cup finals contenders, whose best placing was fourth at the 1966 tournament in England, missed out on top spot in Group 4 due to home and away defeats against eventual winners Germany.

The Republic of Ireland have made three appearances at the FIFA World Cup finals, most recently at the 2002 edition in Korea/Japan. With Italian coaching legend Giovanni Trapattoni at the helm, the team spearheaded by John O’Shea of Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur striker Robbie Keane are quietly confident of securing a spot in South Africa. Bosnia Herzegovina were the surprise package in Group 5, as they comfortably held off Turkey and Belgium to finish runners-up behind seemingly invincible European champions Spain. The Bosnians owe their place among the last eight hopefuls to their potent forward line, featuring free-scoring pair Edin Dzeko and Vedad Ibisevic, ably supported by the playmaking guile of Zvjezdan Misimovic. They are also the only one of the eight group runners-up who have yet to appear at the FIFA World Cup finals.

The most experienced candidates in terms of play-offs for a major tournament are Ukraine. The east Europeans and their star name Andriy Shevchenko came up short at the same stage in 1997 (to Croatia) and 2001 (to Germany) in FIFA World Cup qualifying, and in 1999 (to Slovenia) in the battle for places at the EURO, before finally booking a place at the global showdown in 2006. FIFA World Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo and his Portugal team-mates picked up form after a poor start to qualifying, ending up second to Denmark in their group. The Portuguese, who finished fourth at the 2006 finals and third back in 1966, now go into the eliminators searching for what would be only their fifth appearance at the world’s greatest sporting event.

EURO 2004 winners Greece and their veteran German boss Otto Rehhagel also find themselves needing to negotiate the play-offs after coming off second-best to Switzerland in Group 2. A ticket to South Africa would provide the Greeks with only their second tilt at the world crown. Their sole previous appearance was at the 1994 event in the USA. Finally, Slovenia complete the field for the play-off fray in mid-November. Striker Milivoje Novakovic and Co are also chasing their second finals appearance after sensationally qualifying for the 2002 tournament in Korea/Japan with a play-off triumph over Romania.

watch the draw here

USA late heroics put Honduras into World Cup

October 15, 2009

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jonathan Bornstein headed in a corner kick in the fifth minute of stoppage time, giving the United States a 2-2 tie against Costa Rica on Wednesday night that put Honduras in next year’s World Cup.Bryan Ruiz scored twice in a four minute-span midway through the first half, but Michael Bradley cut the U.S. deficit in the 72nd minute. With the United States playing a man short following an injury to Oguchi Onyewu and Costa Rica less just 20 seconds or so from qualifying, Bornstein headed in Robbie Rogers’ corner kick from about 7 yards.At the end, U.S. players held up a banner with the number “9” of teammate Charlie Davies, who was seriously injured in a car crash Tuesday and is unlikely to play in next year’s World Cup.While the United States topped North and Central America and the Caribbean for the second straight qualifying cycle and Honduras qualified for the World Cup for the first time since 1982, Costa Rica faces a two-game playoff next month against Uruguay.

Argentina v Uruguay Preview

October 14, 2009

Lionel Messi is convinced Argentina will beat Uruguay in Montevideo and book the final automatic South American berth in next summer’s World Cup finals.

The Charruas and the Albicelestes will go head to head to decide who clinches qualification and who will progress to a play-off against a CONCACAF nation – or worse, miss out altogether.

Diego Maradona’s Argentina will play in South Africa if they win or draw, barring an extraordinary performance by Ecuador at already-qualified Chile, while defeat could eliminate them should Ecuador win. Uruguay Must win to overhaul Argentina.

Messi said: ”We’ll play at the World Cup. We are risking everything in the last qualifier. I trust in my national team. We’ll do our best to clinch a win there, even though it won’t be an easy game.”

Maradona has already announced that Gonzalo Higuain and Martin Palermo, who scored the goals in Saturday’s 2-1 victory over Peru, will not both start, with the Real Madrid striker looking the more likely to start.

Maradona said: ”Palermo and Higuain together? No. It is one of them. One or the other. They will play together only if we need to score to win.

”Our chances of progressing to the World Cup are intact. We must go to Uruguay to fight for our qualification. We’ll do that with pride.”

Uruguay boss Oscar Tabarez, meanwhile, will send his side out with a do-or-die attitude.

”Winning is what matters,” he said. ”We’ll try to win. We respect Argentina, but we need the three points.”

Tabarez will try to keep his mind off the clash between Chile and Ecuador in Santiago, which could yet decide their fate should they fail to beat Argentina.

”We’ll not be thinking of what is going on in Chile,” he said. ”Chile will try to win to give joy to their supporters at home. We must win. A draw is the same than losing. We must win.”

Diego Forlan, who scored a penalty winner in added time in the crucial 2-1 win in Ecuador on Saturday, admitted he is shocked that Argentina have not already qualified.

”It is surprising, but this is the result of a number of matches in which they didn’t get the result they expected,” he said. ”Argentina are one of the best teams in the world, but there are no advantages on the field.

”It is the match I’ve always dreamt of. I want to play at the World Cup and it is up to us.”

Watch Argentina v Uruguay live for free here

courtesy of

Latest on Charlie Davis

October 14, 2009

WASHINGTON , D.C. (Oct. 13, 2009) – U.S. National Soccer Team forward Charlie Davies is in serious but stable condition and resting following several hours of surgery at Washington Hospital Center in Washington, D.C. to treat injuries suffered in a one-car accident on the George Washington Parkway early Tuesday morning in Northern Virginia.

Davies suffered a lacerated bladder and fractures to the tibia and femur bones in his right leg. He also suffered facial fractures and a left elbow fracture. Davies was air-lifted to the hospital where a team of doctors first repaired a ruptured bladder and then inserted titanium rods in both the tibia, the bone in the lower leg, and the femur, which is the thigh bone, with no complications. Davies will be hospitalized for at least a week and additional surgeries will be required to stabilize his left elbow fracture and possibly the facial fractures.

“Injuries of this nature usually require a recovery period of six to 12 months and extensive rehabilitation,” said U.S. Soccer physician Dr. Dan Kalbac, who is with the team in D.C. and collaborated with the treating doctors. ”Due to Charlie’s fitness level, his prognosis for recovery and his ability to resume high-level competition is substantially improved.”

Davies is in Washington, D.C. with the U.S. National Team as the squad prepares for its final 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying match, taking place tomorrow against Costa Rica at RFK Stadium.

Davies, who has played 17 matches for the USA while scoring four goals, started and played 78 minutes in the USA’s 3-2 victory over Honduras in San Pedro Sula last Saturday that clinched a berth for the United States to the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.

courtesy of and Associated Press