2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa is Fast Approaching
2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa is Fast Approaching
  • Nam-Gyu Lim
  • 승인 2010.05.18 13:19
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About South Africa
In May 1961, South Africa asserted its independence from the United Kingdom. It is located at the southern tip of the African Continent and the population is composed of 80% black and 20% non black people. Recently, there has been interest in South Africa by Korean international students because of low-priced goods and high level educational opportunities in English. However, large parts of this nation are still fairly unsafe even now.

"ZAKUMI," Mascot of the South Africa World Cup
ZAKUMI is made from the words ZA and KUMI. ZA means South Africa. For example, Korea is KR and United State is US. In the Africaans language, KUMI is the number 10. Also in the Xhosa language, ZAKUMI means "come this way." ZAKUMI, the mascot is a leopard that is one of the five animal symbols of Africa.

The South Africa World Cup Official Ball "JABULANI"
In the Africaans language, JABULANI means "congratulations" and is the flower of the festival. The number 11 is emphasized on the ball which represents 11 players on a soccer team.

Teams to Watch
North Korea (FIFA ranking 106) – This is North Korea’s first World Cup in 40 years. In the 1966 England World Cup they made the final 8 teams. They will participate in group G which has been labeled the “Group of Death.” They are in the same group as Brazil, Portugal, and the Ivory Coast. Spain (FIFA ranking 2) – Spain is a strong candidate to win this World Cup. Their nickname the "Spanish Armada" is an appropriate one. They won Europe 2008 and have gone unbeaten in their last 35 matches. Most of the Spanish team members play key roles on big teams in major European leagues.

Korea(FIFA ranking 47)Ji-Sung Park and Chung-Yong Lee have been playing well. From June 2008 to Nov 2009, they went unbeaten. However, they still had trouble scoring and failed to capitalize on numerous opportunities and were often in disarray on defense.
Greece(FIFA ranking 12)They won Euro 2004 with a powerful defensive team and command of the air. However, since 2004, they have faltered a bit. They won their final game by a narrow margin to enter the finals. They overcome a lack of individual talent with an organized and team oriented approach.
Nigeria (FIFA ranking 20)Their key players mainly play for teams in the big European leagues. Their individual ability is excellent. However, African teams' overall weakness has traditionally been poor organization and defense.
Argentina(FIFA ranking 7) This is one of the best teams in South America along with Brazil. They are a regular favorite in every World Cup, but compared to their previous glory they have not had a good result since 1990. They entered the finals by a narrow margin.
Woo-Jung Bang, Daegu FC former Commentator
Q. What do you think about the World Cup being hosted in South Africa?A. The purpose of hosting the World Cup in South Africa is very good. Public order was a matter of great concern, but I believed in the President of South Africa when he announced "we are prepared to maintain public order.” Q. What is your opinion of the overall of the Korean team?A. Public opinion regarding the defense is low, but the defenders' fighting spirit and courage have been praiseworthy in recent games. I feel that there is less difference between Korea’s level and the world powers of soccer than before.Q. Which team will win this World Cup?A. I expect that Spain or Brazil will win just like most of the public.
Main Schedule of the World Cup Opening ceremonyJohannesburg Soccer City StadiumOpening gameSouth Africa VS Mexico June 11th 23:00 Final roundJohannesburg Soccer City Stadium July 11th 3:30 Closing ceremonyJohannesburg Soccer City StadiumKorea's Match Schedule Korea VS Greece June 12th 20:30 Korea VS Argentina June 17th 20:30 Korea VS Nigeria June 23rd 03:30 The 2010 South Africa World Cup is only three months away. One day soon red T-shirts will cover the streets. Which team will win this World Cup? The Korean team having a good result is very important, but more importantly our players should do their best without regret over bad calls made by referees. I expect for a short time everyone will be able to enjoy this time and have a welcome break from everyday work and life.

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