LONDON - Latest Group D news ahead of the World Cup in South Africa which starts on June 11:
Talismanic winger Harry Kewell was again forced to sit on the sidelines as he watched his Galatasaray team mate and international captain Lucas Neil get sent-off as they were held to a scoreless draw with Bursaspor in Turkey on Sunday.
The former Liverpool player had declared he was over the groin injury which has forced him out since December but he was not risked by coach Frank Rijkaard and has little time left to prove his fitness ahead of the World Cup.
Midfielder Brett Emerton missed Blackburn Rovers' 1-1 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Premier League on Saturday with a hamstring injury suffered a fortnight ago although he is expected to recover in time for the visit of Arsenal next week.
Germany are again struggling with the question of who will their starting goalkeeper be after Bayer Leverkusen's Rene Adler cracked a rib last week.
Tim Wiese of Werder Bremen and Michael Neuer are the other contenders for the post but Adler was unwilling to rule himself out of the job.
"From a medical perspective there is nothing against me starting to train again from next week," Adler told reporters days ago though he did not specify if he would play this season again for Leverkusen.
"We will take it one day at a time and decide calmly when (a return in goal) would make sense."
Joachim Low had earmarked Adler as his first choice early this year but the 25-year-old has been far from consistent for either Germany or Leverkusen since the winter break.
Fullback John Pantsil made his first return to action since breaking his ankle with a full 90 minutes' action in the English Premier League on Sunday.
The 28-year-old played his first match for Fulham, who went down 2-1 at Everton, since December.
Pantsil's injury, suffered against Chelsea on Dec. 28, kept him out of the African Nations finals in January but his timely return is a boost to their World Cup hopes.
Striker Danko Lazovic will be out for a month with a thigh injury he picked up in a Russian Premier League match for his club Zenit St. Petersburg against Terek Grozny on Sunday.
Lazovic's participation in the World Cup finals is hanging in the balance after the initial scan revealed a torn muscle.
"I felt sharp pain as I ran after the ball and I am really concerned about the World Cup, the second scan will show how serious the injury is," Lazovic said.
The injury is a second blow in a week for Serbia, who have lost defender Ivica Dragutinovic to a torn Achilles tendon and he is certain to miss the June 11-July 11 finals.comments