Home
News
Features
Premier League
EPL Home
Latest
Clubs
Stadiums
Friends
Blogs
Football League
World Cup 2014
Europe
Euro Football Home
Latest
Russian Premier
Bundesliga
Ligue 1
La Liga
Football Italiano
International
International Home
Latest
World Cup 2010
Euro 2012 Stadiums
Euro 2012
Denmark 2011
AFCON 2013
Betting
About Us
Advertising
Write for us
Privacy
Recruitment
Twitter
Contact Us
 
 

World Cup Morning Report - South Africa ready to emulate Germany?


Bookmark and Share

By Martin Shillito

Friday 11 June 2010

Four years ago, Germany, a country with the most divided of backgrounds, and the most difficult of identities hosted the greatest footballing extravaganza, the World Cup, with outstanding aplomb. The World Cup in their homeland gave the German population a genuine opportunity to be German again and to not be afraid of saying so. The whole country became awash with black, red and gold when previously there were serious apprehensions about whether they should or could without suffering consequences and criticism. The since-reunification re-jigged national anthem echoed around the stadiums with fierce spirit and the awesome bonhomie directed towards the football fanatics from other countries around the globe was reciprocated admirably. In granting Germany the tournament, FIFA had given it not so much the chance to forget, but, once and for all, the chance to move on. Germany grabbed that chance with both hands.



On May 15, 2004 FIFA afforded some very similar opportunities as they announced South Africa would host the 2010 event. The concepts of South Africa and apartheid go hand in hand, but this is now the chance to break down some more barriers, for the country to unite and to move on together from its grim and benighted past. Just as four years ago with Germany, it is football that creates this opportunity to do so much more than play host to the greatest footballers on the planet, and one swift glance at the build-up to the tournament suggests the South Africans are embracing the opportunity.


No-one could possibly begrudge the South African people their World Cup as they rejoice at home, on the streets, at work, buzzing with energy, enthusiasm and excitement in anticipation of what, effectively, they themselves will make one of the most effervescent World Cups in memory. The South African flags are flying, the burst of colours and the boom of noise are all part and parcel of the African way, and despite the majority of us outsiders having an urge to reach for the mute button on the television remote to rescue ourselves from the relentless belching of irritable vuvuzela tones, the urge should be resisted in order to give South Africa, its people and its culture due respect. The vuvuzela is not just an instrument to create a din or an atmosphere, the monstrous buzz they manufacture is an expression of their identity and an instrument that will help to unite. It should also aid in driving and motivating their team to success.


Despite similarities off the pitch, the prospect of South Africa emulating Germany’s achievement of finishing third in their own tournament is ridiculously unlikely. Success for South Africa however, would simply mean progression from their group into the last 16, and that is far from out of the question. With no host nation ever failing to progress to the knockout stages, the ignominy of doing so would be fairly vast. However, with Carlos Alberto Parreira at the helm and players with Premier League experience such as Aaron Mokoena and Steven Pienaar, do not be surprised if they beat Mexico in today’s opening game. Some of the lesser-known players in the squad, namely Tsepo Masilela and MacBeth Sibaya, in fact sampled Champions League football with Maccabi Haifa and Rubin Kazan respectively last season, while Katlego Mphela and Bernard Parker are more than capable of finding the net for Bafana Bafana.


In a few hours the moment South Africa has been waiting for will be upon us. Wouldn’t it be marvellous if South Africa were to win today? Not just because a successful host nation emboldens the tournament or because everyone loves an underdog. The last word on this momentous day should only rightly go to the inspirational Nelson Mandela, and although the last of his following words may tickle some uneasily, they are wise words all the same: “If there is one thing on the planet that has the power to bind people, it is soccer.”


Related Articles


» 

AFCON 2013: Group A Focus - All to play for with hosts under pressure

» 

Liverpool 2-2 Arsenal: Skrtel late header rescues deserved point for Liverpool

» 

The rise and fall (and rise?) of Wayne Rooney's Everton relationship

» 

Africa Nations 2013: Group A Focus - South Africa edgy ahead of Cabo Verde fixture

» 

Cole should start for England at World Cup, says Bertrand

» 

The Top 5 Earners in Football

» 

Four Chelsea players named in Brazil World Cup squad

 
 

 
 
 
 

 
 

Name

Email Address *

Comments


Please enter code on left.


Terms & Conditions

* A valid email is required to submit a comment. Your email will not be displayed on this or any other website, nor will it be passed to any 3rd parties. For more information please see the terms and conditions.



1 Comments


By Tom on 11 June 2010 at 10:21


Nice piece!


 
 

 
  
 

 
 

Premier League Football News


ArsenalAston VillaChelseaEvertonFulhamLiverpoolManchester CityManchester UtdNewcastle UtdNorwich City
ReadingQueens Park RangersSouthamptonStoke CitySunderlandSwansea CityTottenham HotspurWest Bromwich AlbionWest HamWigan Athletic

 
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 

 
  
 

 
 

Follow us...



 
 

 
  
 

Kick Football News