World Cup Countdown: 24/05/2010
18 days to go
Monday 24 May 2010
Blood problem rules Diarra out of finals
France midfielder Lassana Diarra will miss the World Cup finals after leaving their training camp in the Alpine resort of Tignes, having been unable to train for three days. The Real Madrid player was suffering from stomach pains triggered by a genetic red blood cell disorder which causes chronic fatigue. His condition may have been aggravated by altitude. "It won't have any bearing on the rest of his career, but he's not fit to play in the World Cup," said the France coach, Raymond Domenech. The manager has yet to decide whether he will replace Diarra in his 24-man provisional squad. "We have a few days to make that decision," he said.
* The Australia goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer joins Harry Kewell on the sidelines, with both missing today's friendly against New Zealand in Melbourne. The Fulham goalkeeper injured his thumb in training last week while Galatasaray midfielder Kewell is still not ready to return after a groin injury.
Quote of the day
"I don't play alone, and I can't perform miracles."
Portugal's £80m man Ronaldo being reassuringly modest. He obviously hasn't seen the unveiling of his statue in that new advert yet.
Realisation of the day
"The brutal reality of going to the World Cup is that you could get beaten five-nil every game." - The New Zealand captain, Ryan Nelson, accepting the mammoth task ahead of his side next month.
Wishful thinking of the day
"My stomach tells me we are going to do well. I have a positive feeling." - South Africa's coach Carlos Alberto Parreira weighs up the hosts' chances; they did recently beat Thailand 4-0 in a friendly.
Bizarre team-building of the day
Despite trying to shake off a calf injury, France's William Gallas declared himself fit enough to race a dune buggy in the training camp yesterday. He crashed, rolling the car over, but fortunately escaped with just a graze on his hand.
Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts
Follow the latest updates from the Monday night Premier League fixture
Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and no-one was arrested
George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios
Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?
Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets
Concerns raised phenomenon is threatening resort's image as a family destination
I Am Bread could actually be a challenging and nuanced title
Peter Biaksangzuala died from his injuries in hospital on Sunday
Latest in Sport
'Adel Taarabt is about three stone overweight. I can't pick him' - Harry Redknapp
Indian footballer Peter Biaksangzuala dies after injuring spine doing somersault celebration
QPR vs Liverpool match report: Liverpool snatch victory in seven late minutes of madness
West Ham manager Sam Allardyce calm over lack of new contract
QPR vs Liverpool player ratings: Who was the star man? And did Mario Balotelli emerge with any credit?
- 1 Indian footballer Peter Biaksangzuala dies after injuring spine doing somersault celebration
- 3 Drink alcohol and eat meat to improve male fertility - but cut down on coffee, studies suggest
- 5 Lynda Bellingham dead: Loose Women presenter dies after battle with colon cancer