Samba Sunrise: Suarez puts England to the sword

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Group C - Colombia 2 (Rodriguez 63', Quintero 69') Ivory Coast 1 (Gervinho 72')
Preview • Match Report • Stats Zone

Group D - Uruguay 2 (Suarez 38', 84') England 1 (Rooney 74')
Preview • Match Report • Stats Zone

Group C - Japan 0 Greece 0
Preview • Match Report • Stats Zone


Coach Jose Pekerman has heaped praise on captain Mario Yepes after Colombia maintained their perfect group record and reached the World Cup knockout phase on Friday. The veteran defender was solid at the back on his 100th appearance for his country.

Ivory Coast coach Sabri Lamouchi chose to turn the attention to the opposition fans though, praising them for creating a hostile atmosphere within the stadium. "They were not our colours, but the stadium was an excellent climate," he said. "The crowd is to be congratulated."

He's not only a goalscoring hero, but he also has the gift of premonition. Luis Suarez claims he foresaw the double that led Uruguay to a 2-1 World Cup victory over England in a dream.

England defender Phil Jagielka is still smarting over the loss though, acknowledging that the manner of Suarez's late winner in Sao Paulo was hard to take. "That's the last thing you want to see. As you can tell by my voice, everybody's absolutely devastated in there," he told ITV.


It's all we seem to be talking about these days as Portugal's Miguel Veloso brushed off concerns over the fitness of captain Cristiano Ronaldo. "I'm not a doctor but from what I see, Cristiano Ronaldo is fine," he said.

United States striker Jozy Altidore has been ruled out of his country's World Cup clash with Portugal. Clint Dempsey is expected to start though despite suffering a broken nose in the same game.

Costa Rica coach Jorge Luis Pinto had identified Italy's Andrea Pirlo as the biggest threat ahead of his side's World Cup encounter with the Azzurri. Pinto said nullifying the 38-year-old would be key to causing another upset after the opening win over Uruguay.

Italy coach Cesare Prandelli is taking nothing for granted though, revealing that he "fears" his side's upcoming World Cup opponents Costa Rica. "We have followed with particular interest this team. They are very well organised and know their style by heart and their own system of play," he said.

Goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev has put his hand up and apologised for the remarkable error that saw South Korea open the scoring against Russia. "I want to apologise,” said Akinfeev. "It was a ridiculous goal. Any normal person should apologise and blame themselves for this moment.

Germany forward Mario Gotze is desperate to open his World Cup account when they face Ghana on Saturday. The Bayern Munich man had a good chance in the early stages of Germany's 4-0 thrashing of Portugal on Tuesday but was unable to convert.


Michael Cox assesses the impact of some of the best full backs in Brazil, and wonders if England need more from theirs...

Chile have brought tiki-taka to an end in a brief frenzy of mastication, according to Back of the Net's Paul Watson...

As England edge toward the exit, Nick Harper ruefully reflects on what might have been in his World Cup diary...