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Xabi Alonso tipping Spain and Germany for World Cup results

Former Bayern Munich midfielder Xabi Alonso believes Germany will be the team to defeat at this summer’s FIFA World Cup, although latest Bayern string-puller Thiago Alcantara knows he will have to prevent several of his Bundesliga rivals if he is to arise triumphant with Spain this summer months.

Alonso lifted the World Cup in 2010, sandwiched in amongst European Championship triumphs in 2008 and 2012, and with 3 Bundesliga titles and two Champions Leagues to his identity, the 36-year-old certainly knows what it takes to be thriving.

Talking to FIFA.com forward of the World Cup, he admitted that Joachim Löw’s men – immediately after his possess region – are kinds to observe out for in Russia.

“I am not just stating it, but I would set [Spain] among the favourites because I never see any facet that’s far better than Spain proper now,” he explained. “I do not know what is heading to transpire in the games although. Germany is yet another of the large favourites. They are an extremely robust facet and they’re often there or thereabouts.”

Alonso observed initial hand the number of remarkable new potential customers rising via the Bundesliga in current yrs and he feels that although the likes of Philipp Lahm, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Lukas Podolski and For every Mertesacker may no extended be all around, Germany has succeeded in replacing them adequately, although also lowering the regular age of the squad.

Timo Werner, Julian Brandt, Leon Goretzka and Joshua Kimmich are all set to play essential roles in an energetic facet Alonso fancies for at the very least a remaining 4 berth.

“The way they have been playing, it would be a significant surprise if they never make the semis, because they’re the champions and because of the new era who’ve to appear into the team,” he explained, incorporating that “Brazil is also proper in there – I feel those people 3 are above the rest. Then you can find Argentina, France and it’s possible a surprise or two. Why not?”

Spain’s hopes will be pinned on the shoulders of Bayern midfielder Thiago, who claims he is prepared to fill an important job on the field for his region in Russia – a person he has honed in the Bundesliga, proper at the coronary heart of the motion.

“It can be a job I am ready for because I’ve performed in it with Bayern,” Thiago explained. “Of system it is really an important position for the organisation of the team and I hope to fill it properly. We are a facet who like to keep the ball, like to push, shift all around and we take pleasure in playing the way we play – we would like to get this World Cup begun tomorrow.”

Germany and Spain could meet up with at the earliest in the semi-finals.

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2017 Castle COSAFA Cup draw results


by
Austin Ditlhobolo

Thursday May 18, 2017. 15:00


The draw for the 2017 COSAFA Castle Cup has set up some tasty ties for the regional showpiece tournament that will be staged in South Africa’s North West province from June 25-July 9.

Defending champions South Africa must wait to learn their quarterfinal opponents having been drawn against the winner of Group A at the 2017 COSAFA Castle Cup that will be staged in the North West province from June 25-July 9.

South Africa will come up against one of Angola, east African guest nation Tanzania, Mauritius and Malawi in the regional showpiece tournament.

Tanzania are competing for the third time after 1997 and 2015, with Comoros Islands having declined to take part this year.

Swaziland will face the winners of Group B, which is a hugely competitive pool that includes Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Mozambique and Seychelles.

The other two quarterfinals see Botswana take on Zambia in a titanic battle and 2015 winners Namibia play Lesotho in another COSAFA Castle Cup classic clash.

As in the last two editions, the losing teams in the quarterfinals will enter the Plate competition

The regional showpiece tournament was first played in 1997 and has been won four times each by South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Angola have three titles to their name and Namibia one.

Long-time sponsor of the tournament, Castle Lager, will be hosting a number of exciting activations around the COSAFA Castle Cup, including a five-a-side football competition, and have also brought on board a number of ‘Legends’ from the region to lend their support to the event.



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