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Asamoah Gyan fires Ghana into the last eight of the 2010 FIFA World Cup with a wonder strike that sinks United States of America in a match played in Rustenburg last night.

 

The French based striker scored in the 93rd minute of extra time to seal a victory for the West African giants after Landon Donovan’s penalty had cancelled out Kevin Prince Boateng’s opener on July 2 in Johannesburg.

Ghana have become only the third African country to advance to the quarter finals in the history of the World Cup after a Roger Milla inspired Cameroonian class of 1990 and a talented Senegalese side of 2002 were the only African teams to go that far.

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With the World Cup knockout stage now in progress, ZBC News highlights some of the news coming from the world’s premier football competition in South Africa.

England’s second round showdown with Germany is deemed a high risk clash and security personnel as well as members of the special task force are reported to have been deployed to Bloemfontein to ensure this highly critical clash goes off smoothly.

 

The rivalry between the two countries was sparked by the 1966 controversial World Cup final in which Geoff Hurst’s headed goal during extra time was disputed by the Germans who claimed it never crossed the line.

Since then, their clashes have grabbed the attention of the world with Germany getting the better of the English, the 1990 semi-final penalty shootout being a case in point.

South African football great Jomo Sono has hit out at Bafana Bafana saying they failed to justify the money pumped into the team with their first-round exit from the first World Cup on African soil. The former Bafana Bafana coach said the host nation’s early departure can affect the competition.

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France’s disastrous World Cup campaign will be the subject of a government enquiry, Patrice Evra has revealed. Striker Thierry Henry held talks with President Nicolas Sarkozy after the Les Bleus arrived home on Thursday. And captain Evra said politicians will quiz the squad over the infighting which overshadowed their tournament.

 

 

Evra, meanwhile, added the players’ training boycott in protest at the decision to send striker Nicolas Anelka home was wrong, branding it “clumsy”. Anelka was dismissed for allegedly abusing coach Raymond Domenech at half-time during France’s 2-0 defeat to Mexico.

 

 

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fabio cannavaro.jpgFabio Cannavaro has called on Italy to put their resources in developing younger players as the defender prepares for international retirement. Italy were knocked out of the World Cup after a 3-2 loss to Slovakia meant they finished bottom of their group. With nine players in the team over 30, the 36-year-old defender said it is important to invest in younger players.

 

 

Cannavaro, the Azzurri’s star player and captain when they won the competition in Germany four years ago, seemed off the pace as Italy struggled in South Africa, drawing against Paraguay and New Zealand before losing to Slovakia.

 

The Juventus centre-back admitted he cried after the defending champions were eliminated, but did not believe the woeful performance in Africa would erase the memory of their 2006 triumph.

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jermain defoe.jpgJermain Defoe says the England players have been practising penalties intensely ahead of their World Cup last-16 clash with Germany on Sunday.

 

 

The Germans have twice beaten England on penalties at major tournaments – in the 1990 World Cup and at Euro 96. Striker Defoe said the squad has taken penalties every day in South Africa.

 

Reports suggest manager Fabio Capello’s first five penalty takers will be Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Wayne Rooney, Gareth Barry and James Milner. And Defoe, who scored in England’s 1-0 win over Slovenia which secured their place in the last 16, said although he hopes Sunday’s game is not decided by penalties, he would be happy to step up if required.                     

 

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joachim loew.jpgMeanwhile, Germany boss Joachim Loew insists his young team has no fear of facing England’s more experienced players in Sunday’s World Cup second-round match.

 

 

Loew’s squad includes a number of youngsters who featured in last year’s European Under-21 Championships.

 

 

Loew said although the Germans are a young team they will act with courage and hold their own.

Asamoah Gyan fires Ghana into the last eight of the 2010 FIFA World Cup with a wonder strike that sinks United States of America in a match played in Rustenburg last night.