Reuters Soccer Blog
World Soccer views and news
Welcome to our Reuters podcast on day three of the World Cup. Today’s brief encounter contains expert comment from Brian Homewood, Paul Radford, Theo Ruizenaar and Mark Gleeson plus a bit of fun at the expense of FIFA at the end.
Scores of Bafana Bafana fans made their way to the Polokwane Fan Fest area in a public demonstration of utter patriotism.
One among the huge number of that braved the winter afternoon chills is an extraordinary young man. With his face painted in the South African flag colours, clearly done by one zealous street vendor, Morris Raseruti gave off a big smile when I asked him how he felt to be at the Fan Fest area in Polokwane in the middle of such a loud crowd of people witnessing the first game of the first African soccer world cup.
The contrast between the highly-controlled environs of the soccer World Cup venues and the likes of Cape Town’s Newlands stadium, home to a South Africa v France rugby test on Saturday, was marked.
At Newlands, the supporter is king. For decades fans have turned up early with their own food and lit hundreds of barbeques, or brais as they are known in South Africa.
from Africa News blog:
The excitement is here in the townships too. We have our flags, our caps, our second hand sport shirts. All that is missing are the games.
Our electricity was cut off just a few days ago in what looks as though it was a crackdown on irregular power connections by the power company Eskom. No light. No television.
Street traders in Port Elizabeth seem to be raking in the benefits of being a host city in the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Known as the Friendly City, Port Elizabeth’s street traders said this week they too were enjoying the business boom brought by the tournament.
This comes after Cape Town Street traders were flighted on a TV news channel this week saying they were taking home about R1800 on busy days, selling football paraphernalia.
My vuvuzela is a glorious item – 70 cm of shiny plastic in the colours of the South African flag with the potential to deafen anyone nearby with the “sound of a herd of elephants”.
The minute I handed over my cash to the roadside hawker I was itching to try out my new toy – I hung it round my neck, took a deep breath, drew the trumpet to my lips and prepared to make an almighty racket.
You could go for a three-pronged attack of Nani, Didier Drogba and Arjen Robben. How about Michael Ballack, David Beckham, John Obi Mikel and Michael Essien in your midfield? And build your defence around Rio Ferdinand.
Welcome to a new kind of Fantasy Football — the World Cup Injured XI.
I haven’t yet scoured the statistics books, but veterans in the game cannot remember a World Cup so badly hit by injuries to big names before it even started. Not all of them are out for the whole tournament, of course, but some big names are , and what a shame the first World Cup on the continent has already lost so much star power.
In townships throughout South Africa, young boys and girls first learn to play football in the streets. And as fans and footballers from across the globe gather here for the 2010 World Cup, the townships are also vying for the world’s attention.In Alexandra township, which stands across the motorway and the skyscrapers of its more glamorous cousin Sandton, this world cup promises to bring something positive to the community.
Alex will be home to this years “other” World Cup. The tournament, which is known as Football for Hope, kicked off on Friday June 4 at Alexandra Stadium. This FIFA sponsored tournament will bring more than 250 boys and girls (between the ages of 12 to 17) from different countries and cultures into the heart of Alexandra.
What started as a hunt for Mexican fans became a front row seat to one of the greatest street parties ever seen in South Africa as World Cup fever cranked up several notches on a sun-kissed afternoon in Johannesburg yesterday.
As I strolled the street looking for sombreros all I could find was a sea of green and gold as tens of thousands proud South Africans roared on their team, passing by in an open top bus.