FIFA World Cup Germany 2006

The FIFA World Cup 2006 was the most exciting and brilliant tournament in football history: passion, accion and goals. Get all the reports, matches, news, photos and videos every minute. Germany 2006 is here!

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Saturday, December 10, 2005

Host Germany Happy with their Group

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Germany reacted with relief and delight at the draw that gave the World Cup host a relatively simple-to-win group with Ecuador,Costa Rica and Poland - and avoid stronger rivals like Portugal or Netherlands.

The Netherlands was the non-seeded squad all the teams didn't want and the Germans were weary of a group that would pit them against the neighbors. But the Dutch ended up in one of the toughest groups with Argentina, Serbia-Montenegro and Ivory Coast, while the Germans couldn't keep the smiles off their faces.

"We are very pleased," coach Klinsmann said. "It could have been much worse".

"We think that this is a double group. All rivals are difficult, we don't want to underestimate any team. But we have a great feeling."

Kilnsmann said Ecuador is very a strong team at home, but playing in Germany will be different.

"Costa Rica shouldn't be underestimated and Poland is surely a hurdle, they played very good qualifications. But we have to get through," the German Coach said. "Now we know what we face and we are looking forward. The draw gave us a little help and now we can start."

Should Germany win Group A, it's second-round opponent could be England.

The Germans will kick off the Cup against Costa Rica on June 9 in Munich. The final will take place on July 9 in Berlin.

Germany then plays Poland on June 17 in Dortmund and faces Ecuador in Berlin on June 20.

Germany has never played against either Costa Rica or Ecuador. Of 14 matches against Poland, Germany has won 10 and lost none.

Friday, December 09, 2005

The Draw is over: World Cup Groups

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The Ceremony was flawless. The great participants gave it an elegant image to the night. The FIFA World Cup Germany 2006 is now one step closer to reality after the intrigue and excitement of the Final Draw at the Messe in Leipzig tonight.



Group A
Germany
Costa Rica
Poland
Ecuador

Group B
England
Paraguay
Trinidad and Tobago
Sweden

Group C
Argentina
Côte d'Ivoire
Serbia and Montenegro
Netherlands

Group D
Mexico
Iran
Angola
Portugal

Group E
Italy
Ghana
United States
Czech Republic

Group F
Brazil
Croatia
Australia
Japan

Group G
France
Switzerland
Korea Republic
Togo

Group H
Spain
Ukraine
Tunisia
Saudi Arabia

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Explaining the World Cup Draw System

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The World Cup draw for the group stages will take place in Leipzig tomorrow. Here we give a quick outline to how the draw process will be.

We will see a first pool of eight seeded teams. The squads, including England, were seeded based on their performance at the 1998 and 2002 World Cups and also their FIFA world ranking in 2003, 2004 and 2005.

As soon as a nation is drawn from pools two, three or four, another draw will then take place to allocate this team their place in the group, which will decide the order of the group fixtures.

If possible, teams from the same confederation will be kept apart, the exception being UEFA-affiliated nations where a maximum of two are permitted in each group. Serbia and Montenegro are in a separate pot, and is going to go into a group containing one of three non-European seeds - Brazil, Argentina or Mexico.

Germany have been placed in Group A. They will kick off the tournament in Munich, before moving to Dortmund and completing their group campaign in Berlin, where the final will be staged.

FIFA spokesman Andreas Herren told us: "The tradition with the opening game played by the world champions goes back to 1974."

"The cause of this change was that in November 2001 the FIFA executive committee decided that the reigning world champions would not any longer qualify for the finals automatically. At the time of putting the match calendar together, the only team sure to qualify was Germany, hence the move to have them play the opener."

Where two squads finish level on points, the first criterion to separate the sides will be the outcome of the group match or matches (if more than two sides) between them. If the match was a draw, goal difference will be the second criterion, then goals scored. In the end, if the teams still cannot be separated, lots will be drawn by the World Cup organising committee.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Brazil, Germany and Mexico among the 8 seeds for World Cup draw

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Hosts nation Germany and current champions Brazil are among the top eight seeds for the World Cup Draw as expected on Tuesday. The other teams are surprising Mexico, Argentina, England, Spain, France, and Italy.

FIFA choosed the rest of the draw, which will be on Friday, would group squads in pots according to their geographical locations rather than their current world ranking or previous World Cup performances.

This way, second pot will include Australia, the African teams: Ghana, Ivory Coast, Tunisia, Angola and Togo, and the two South American teams Ecuador and Paraguay.

The third pot will comprise eight European teams: Sweden, Croatia, Czech Republic, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Switzerland and Ukraine.

The fourth pot will comprise four Asian teams: Iran, Japan, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and the three remaining from CONCACAF Costa Rica, Trinidad & Tobago and the United States.

A special pot will contain only Serbia & Montenegro, the lowest ranked European team, who will be placed in a group including either Brazil, Argentina or Mexico.

FIFA created the special pot so they could avoid having any groups with more than two European teams.

Jim Brown, FIFA's Director of Competitions explained: "The seedings were based on FIFA rankings for the last three years and the last two World Cup finals.

"Germany will be seeded in slot A1 in the draw and Brazil in F1, and there were economic factors involved in this decision as those teams are guaranteed to play in larger stadiums."

One team from each pot will be drawn into the eight groups in the first stage of the finals in Germany which run from June 9 to July 9.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Hooligans may damage World Cup 2006

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Germany's fight to cut out hooligans ahead of the World Cup suffered a setback on Saturday when Hamburg's Alexander Laas was left with blood pouring from a head wound after being hit by missiles thrown from the crowd. Trouble flared when Cologne away fans threw several objects, including wooden drumsticks, onto the pitch in their 3-1 Bundesliga win.

Benjamin Lauth scored in the 54th minute to put hosts Hamburg two goals in front and it was during the post-goal celebrations that Cologne fans reacted angrily.

Plastic cups and drumsticks swamped the pitch and the 21-year-old Laas, a 17th minute substitute for Rafael van der Vaart, was pictured with blood gushing from his head.

"I went to celebrate with my teammates and got hit by a hard object," recalled the midfielder.

"I did not know what it was but the head still hurts now. That is obviously not part of football."

Referee Jochen Drees stopped play and Laas played on after being patched up by the Hamburg medical team but there are sure to be consequences with World Cup hosts Germany adopting a zero tolerance policy.

"That is the ugly side of football," explained Hamburg striker Sergei Barbarez.

"It should not happen particularly with the World Cup in Germany just around the corner."

Pires wants to be in World Cup

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Arsenal midfielder Robert Pires, wnat to be part of the France squad for next year's World Cup. That's why he said on Sunday he has apologised to coach Raymond Domenech for his behaviour.

Pires, who was world champion with France in 1998, criticised manager Domenech in an interview with France Football magazine last year. He has not been nominated by Domenech since a World Cup qualifier in Cyprus in October 2004.

"I had a conversation with the coach a few days ago. I wanted to apologise," he told French television channel TF1.

"I said things during a bad period in my life but I never wanted to hurt the squad," he added.

"He (Domenech) did not ask me to apologise."

Pires said he was inspired by English-based France rugby international Thomas Castaignede, who made his return to the French squad in October after a lengthy absence.

"Thomas Castaignede's return gives me a lot of hope. Actually he is the one who told me to talk to the coach," Pires said.

"I still believe I can make it for the 2006 World Cup."