Group B team news

LONDON - Latest Group B news ahead of the World Cup in South Africa which starts on June 11:

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Veteran defender Lee Young-pyo thinks the success of South Korea's World Cup finals campaign will depend on their opening game against Greece.

The South Koreans will also play Argentina and Nigeria in Group B but Lee says Greece will be the pivotal match-up.

"I can't say we're pleased with the draw, but we accept it," he told

"For me, that match against Greece will be the most important game of all in the group stage, because if we can win it we'll be in better shape to take on Argentina and Nigeria."

Lee also said coach Huh Jung-moo had made his mark on the team after a series of Dutch coaches including Guus Hiddink, Dick Advocaat and Pim Verbeek.

"We've picked up plenty of victories with him over the last two years. I also think that South Korean football has evolved enormously during those two years," he added.


Striker Martin Palermo may have enhanced his World Cup chances with another fluke goal, a backward header that put Boca Juniors in front against Independiente during his team's 3-2 win.

Palermo, who has a knack for pulling rabbits out of the hat, will be looking to stake a final claim with coach Diego Maradona in Wednesday's friendly against Haiti in the southern Andean town of Cutral-Co.

Other possibles selected for the match are Colon goalkeeper Diego Pozo and Boca left- back Luciano Monzon, while a surprise choice for the finals could emerge from the 17-man squad.


Nigeria have moved their World Cup base from Durban to Richards Bay, some 170km north on South Africa's KwaZulu-Natal coast.

Nigerian Football Federation secretary general Bolaji Ojo-Oba said the decision had been made after an inspection of previously arranged facilities in Durban. He did not give a reason for the change.

The Nigerians will now stay at waterfront hotel in the coastal town for the duration of the tournament and travel by air from Richards Bay to their Group B matches in Johannesburg, Bloemfontein and Durban.


There were no surprises in Greece coach Otto Rehhagel's Monday call-up of nine foreign-based players for his preliminary World Cup squad and a training camp starting on May 17.

Rehhagel has yet to announce the full squad but his early invitations included Liverpool defender Sotiris Kyrgiakos, Hertha Berlin striker Fanis Gekas, Celtic forward Giorgos Samaras and veteran striker Angelos Haristeas.

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