• Thursday, 13 May 2010

    World Cup round-up

    We've highlighted the squads from the nations whose leagues we cover here on Euroballs, plus our team for the tournament, Slovenia. Now let's have a look at the other European nations making the trek down to South Africa in just under a month's time.


    Otto Rehhagel names Christos Patsatzoglou and Giorgos Seitaridis despite them both missing huge chunks of the campaign with injury. Ten players make the cut from Panathinaikos and there are nine players based overseas including Celtic striker Giorgos Samaras and Hertha's Theofanis Gekas who got ten goals in qualifying. The team's preparations continue in the wonderfully named Swiss town of Bad Ragaz. Great band. Got all their albums.

    Goalkeepers: Michalis Sifakis (Aris Salonika), Alexandros Tzorvas (Panathinaikos), Kostas Chalkias (PAOK Salonika)

    Defenders: Giorgos Seitaridis (Panathinaikos), Loukas Vintra (Panathinaikos), Evangelos Moras (Bologna), Socrates Papastathopoulos (Genoa), Sotiris Kyrgiakos (Liverpool), Avraam Papadopoulos (Olympiakos), Vasilis Torosidis (Olympiakos), Nikos Spiropoulos (Panathinaikos), Stelios Malezas (PAOK Salonika), Giorgos Tzavellas (Panionios), Kostas Manolas (AEK Athens), Giorgos Galitsios (Olympiakos), Stergos Marinos (Panathinaikos)

    Midfielders: Kostas Katsouranis (Panathinaikos), Alexandros Tziolis (Siena), Giorgos Karagounis (Panathinaikos), Sotiris Ninis (Panathinaikos), Christos Patsatzoglou (Omonia), Grigoris Makos (AEK Athens), Sakis Prittas (Aris Salonika), Lazaros Christodoulopoulos (Panathinaikos);

    Forwards: Angelos Charisteas (Nurnberg), Dimitris Salpigidis (Panathinaikos), Pantelis Kapetanos (Steaua Bucharest), Theofanis Gekas (Hertha), Giorgos Samaras (Celtic), Kostas Mitroglou (Olympiakos).


    England boss Fabio Capello has major injury concerns over midfielder Gareth Barry and has opted to go back to the future elsewhere. Jamie Carragher makes a return to international football having previously retired while Paul Scholes has turned down a request to end his international retirement. David Beckham is injured, but will go with the squad in a coaching role while Tottenham's achievement in reaching the Champions League sees six of their players called up. Michael Dawson and Tom Huddlestone are new faces while Ledley King, whose chronic knee problems mean he can't play twice in a week, is also included. It's a risk. Adam Johnson, the exciting young winger Manchester City picked up from Middlesbrough, is also rewarded for a string of eye-catching displays.

    Goalkeepers: Joe Hart (Manchester City), David James (Portsmouth), Robert Green (West Ham)

    Defenders: Leighton Baines (Everton), Jamie Carragher (Liverpool), Ashley Cole (Chelsea), Michael Dawson (Tottenham), Rio Ferdinand (Manchester Utd), Glen Johnson (Liverpool), Ledley King (Tottenham), John Terry (Chelsea), Matthew Upson (West Ham), Stephen Warnock (Aston Villa)

    Midfielders: Gareth Barry (Manchester City), Michael Carrick (Manchester Utd), Joe Cole (Chelsea), Steven Gerrard (Liverpool), Tom Huddlestone (Tottenham), Adam Johnson (Manchester City), Frank Lampard (Chelsea), Aaron Lennon (Spurs), James Milner (Aston Villa), Scott Parker (West Ham), Theo Walcott (Arsenal), Shaun Wright-Phillips (Manchester City)

    Forwards: Darren Bent (Sunderland), Peter Crouch (Tottenham), Jermain Defoe (Tottenham), Emile Heskey (Aston Villa), Wayne Rooney (Manchester Utd)


    The familiar face of Radi Antic takes Serbia into the World Cup finals and he's named a strong squad. Six English-based players are in, led by the imposing figure of Nemanja Vidic who will partner the in-demand Neven Subotic at centre back. Zoran Tosic, on loan at Cologne from Manchester United for much of the season, is rewarded for his form in the Bundesliga while Ajax's Miralem Sulejmani gets in despite being relegated to the fringes in Amsterdam. His club-mate Marko Pantelic will lead the line alongside the giant Nikola Zigic. Milos Krasic leads a tasty looking midfield.

    Goalkeepers: Vladimir Stojkovic (Wigan), Zeljko Brkic (Vojvodina Novi Sad), Bojan Isailovic (Cukaricki Belgrade), Andjelko Djuricic (Leiria)

    Defenders: Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea), Antonio Rukavina (1860 Munich), Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United), Neven Subotic (Borussia Dortmund), Aleksandar Lukovic (Udinese), Ivan Obradovic (Zaragoza), Aleksandar Kolarov (Lazio)

    Midfielders: Dejan Stankovic (Internazionale), Nenad Milijas (Wolverhampton), Milos Krasic (CSKA Moscow), Milan Jovanovic (Standard Liege), Milos Ninkovic (Dynamo Kiev), Zdravko Kuzmanovic (Stuttgart), Zoran Tosic (Manchester United), Miralem Sulejmani (Ajax), Gojko Kacar (Hertha), Nemanja Matic (Chelsea), Radosav Petrovic (Partizan Belgrade)

    Forwards: Nikola Zigic (Valencia), Marko Pantelic (Ajax), Danko Lazovic (Zenit St Petersburg), Dragan Mrdja (Vojvodina), Dejan Lekic (Crvena Zvezda).


    The big doubt for Morten Olsen is the fitness or otherwise of keeper Tomas Sorensen who dislocated his elbow playing for Stoke City in the Premier League run-in. Olsen says he's confident that Sorensen will be fit enough, but he has plenty of back-up if needed. Simon Kjaer is very much in-demand and won't hurt his chances of a move with a decent finals and the exciting youngster Christian Eriksen of Ajax lights up a fairly stoic midfield. There's space for veterans too, Jesper Gronkjaer, Dennis Rommedahl and Jon-Dahl Tomasson all included.

    Goalkeepers: Jesper Christiansen (FC Copenhagen), Kim Christensen (IFK Gothenburg), Stephan Andersen (Brondby), Tomas Sorensen (Stoke City)

    Defenders: Daniel Agger (Liverpool), Lars Jacobsen (Blackburn), Patrick Mtiliga (Malaga), Per Kroldrup (Fiorentina), Simon Busk Poulsen (AZ), Simon Kjaer (Palermo), William Kvist (FC Copenhagen)

    Midfielders: Christian Poulsen (Juventus), Christian Eriksen (Ajax), Daniel Jensen (Werder Bremen), Jakob Poulsen (AGF Aarhus), Michael Silberbauer (FC Utrecht), Mikkel Beckmann (Randers), Thomas Enevoldsen (FC Groningen), Thomas Kahlenberg (Wolfsburg), Dennis Rommedahl (Ajax), Jesper Gronkjaer (FC Copenhagen)

    Forwards: Jon Dahl Tomasson (Feyenoord), Martin Jorgensen (AGF Aarhus), Michael Krohn-Dehli (Brondby), Nicklas Bendtner (Arsenal), Soren Larsen (Duisburg).


    Vladimir Weiss takes a punt on injured trio Martin Skrtel, Filip Holosko and Robert Vittek in his initial World Cup squad. Skrtel broke a bone in his foot and hasn't played for three months, Holosko is just making his way back from a broken leg and Vittek has missed much of the latter part of the Turkish season with a knee problem. Holosko and Vittek form half the strikers at Weiss's disposal, so it's crucial they get fit in time. The coach's son, also Vladimir, gets the nod after a successful loan spell at Bolton from his parent club Manchester City. There are some special players in here: Marek Hamsik, Miroslav Stoch and Marek Cech have all had great years. This is a side that will prove tough to beat.

    Goalkeepers: Jan Mucha (Legia Warszava), Dusan Kuciak (Vaslui), Lubos Kamenar (Nantes), Dusan Pernis (Dundee United)

    Defenders: Peter Pekarik (Wolfsburg), Martin Petras (Cesena), Martin Skrtel (Liverpool), Lubomir Michalik (Leeds), Jan Durica (Hannover), Radoslav Zabavnik (Mainz), Marek Cech (West Brom), Tomas Lubocan (Zenit St Petersburg), Kornel Salate (Slovan Bratislava)

    Midfielders: Kamil Kopunek (Spartak Trnava), Jan Kozak (Timisoara), Juraj Kucka (Sparta Praha), Miroslav Karhan (Mainz), Marek Sapara (Ankaragucu), Mario Pecalka (Zilina), Stanislav Sestak (Bochum), Marek Hamsik (Napoli), Vladimir Weiss (Manchester City), Miroslav Stoch (Chelsea), Dusan Svento (Salzburg), Zdeno Strba (Xanthi)

    Forwards: Erik Jendrisek (Schalke), Robert Vittek (Ankaragucu), Martin Jakubko (Saturn Moscow), Filip Holosko (Besiktas)


    Ottmar Hitzfeld includes Philippe Senderos despite him having indifferent times while out on loan at Milan and Everton over the last couple of years, but there's no place for fellow Gunner Johann Djourou, just back after eight months out with a knee injury. It's largely the group of players that guided Switzerland through qualification, but 18-year old Kosovo-born winger Xherdan Shaqiri gets a surprise nod. Blaise N'Kufo leads the line in what will surely be his last tournament, the 36-year old is due to link up with Seattle Sounders after the tournament. The supply will largely come from Tranquillo Barnetta while Diego Benaglio will be among the top goalkeepers at the finals.

    Goalkeepers: Diego Benaglio (Wolfsburg), Johnny Leoni (Zurich), Marco Wolfli (Young Boys).

    Defenders: Mario Eggimann (Hannover), Stephane Grichting (Auxerre), Stephan Lichtsteiner (Lazio), Philippe Senderos (Arsenal), Christoph Spycher (Eintracht Frankfurt), Steve Von Bergen (Hertha), Reto Ziegler (Sampdoria).

    Midfielders: Tranquillo Barnetta (Leverkusen), Valon Behrami (West Ham), Gelson Fernandes (St Etienne), Benjamin Huggel (Basle), Gokhan Inler (Udinese), Marco Padalino (Sampdoria), Pirmin Schwegler (Eintracht Frankfurt), Xherdan Shaqiri (Basle).

    Forwards: Eren Derdiyok (Leverkusen), Alexander Frei (Basle), Blaise Nkufo (FC Twente), Marco Streller (Basle), Hakan Yakin (Lucerne).

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