World Cup countdown: Argentina impress in benefit match

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The Independent Football

Diego Maradona has led an Argentina team consisting of domestically based players to a convincing 4-0 victory over Haiti.

The 49-year-old national team manager names his provisional 30-man squad on Monday, and was impressed by a number of performances. "I liked several players very much," he said. "We now we have to sit down and think about it."

Maradona used the match, played in aid of Haiti earthquake relief, to give debuts to six players. The teenage midfielder Facundo Bertoglio impressed Maradona most, scoring twice, either side of goals from Martin Palermo and Sebastian Blanco.

Germany have finalised their 27-man preliminary squad, and there is no room for Tomas Hitzlsperger. The former Aston Villa midfielder missed out after a drop in form at Lazio. Hamburg defender Dennis Aogo, who featured against Fulham in the Europa League semi-finals, was given a surprise call-up. Seven Bayern Munich players feature, as well as Chelsea's Michael Ballack.

Chile have beaten Trinidad & Tobago 2-0 in a warm-up match that continued despite an earthquake that hit 6.4 on the Richter scale interrupting play.

South Korea are sweating over the fitness of striker Park Chu-Young. The 24-year-old injured his thigh during Monaco's French Cup final defeat to Paris Saint-Germain.

Highlights of the day

Team-mate of the day

Everton's Phil Jageilka has told his foreign team-mates he hopes they perform well at the World Cup, but not if they start to progress. "I won't support them all for too long, but I will at least at the group stages." Let's hope England give you someone to follow in the knockout stages then Phil.



Transfer story of the day

Preston manager Darren Ferguson has decided he will keep an eye on the World Cup this summer in order to bolster his squad. Just don't get your heart set on Wayne Rooney, Darren – your dad insists that he isn't for sale.



Police raid of the day

An incredible 140,000 counterfeit England strips have been seized in two Indonesian factories after Umbro received a tip-off. The stash was reportedly worth £5m, with each shirt expected to fetch £35. That is, one assumes, until the inevitable 2 for £10 deals would have appeared in late July.

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