World Cup Countdown: 08/05/2010

34 Days To Go

Ferguson stands firm on Foster

Sir Alex Ferguson has remained unapologetic regarding Ben Foster's England chances, after the Manchester United keeper said he may leave the club in the summer.

"I understand his dilemma but there is nothing I can do," Ferguson said. "He is a terrific goalkeeper and we will see what the future brings for the boy. Ben has the talent to be England's goalkeeper and we're conscious of that. We'd like to help but, unfortunately, he's not played enough football to get him on that plane to South Africa."

Denmark midfielder Leon Andreasen has been ruled out of the finals as he will be undergoing surgery next week on a leg injury. Danish coach Morten Olsen said of the Hannover player's operation: "It was not unexpected but we had hoped that he would be able to make it."

Mexico play Ecuador tonight in what is the first of five warm-up friendlies for the Latin American side. They face England at Wembley on 24 May.

The Ipswich manager Roy Keane has said he is considering travelling to the World Cup as a pundit. The Ipswich manager said: "I have had one or two offers from TV companies to work at the World Cup and I might surprise everyone and go."

Keane's last World Cup experience was as a player in 2002, when he infamously walked out on the Republic of Ireland squad.

Highlights of the Day

Journey of the day

The World Cup trophy has set off on a tour of South Africa, but protocol dictates only heads of state and tournament winners may touch it. Whether the Queen intends to go and touch the cup, we know not.

Les Misérables of the day

As if missing out on the Champions League wasn't bad enough for Patrick Vieira, his chances of making France's squad hit a snag through some freak occurrences. Coach Raymond Domenech missed out on watching him Wednesday night due to slipping a disc. A trip was then organised for his assistant Pierre Mankowski, but the infamous ash cloud prevented him flying over. Que sera, sera.

Ironic name of the day

Honduras have been hit by an injury worry that is costly, literally. Striker Carlos Costly injured his ankle playing for club Vaslui, based in Romania. He is still expected to make final squad, much to the relief of headline writers.

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