Suspension and Injury latests ahead of crucial last-eight clashes
Argentina have kept their discpline in these finals, having received just five cautions after four games. Jonas Gutierrez has two but has already served a suspension, but Javier Mascherano and Gabriel Heinze are two players which could pick up another yellow against Germany on Friday and would then miss the semi-final against either Spain or Paraguay.
Dunga has his work cut out with injuries, as Elano is ruled out of Friday’s encounter with Holland while Felipe Melo and Julio Baptista are major doubts. A highly likely replacement for Melo would have been Benfica’s Ramires, but his second yellow card of the tournament against Chile in the previous round means he will serve out a one-game suspension. Kaka, Luis Fabiano and Juan are all one caution away from missing the semi-final against either Uruguay or Ghana.
It has been well documented that Bastian Schweinsteiger and Mesut Ozil have been nursing injuries, or knocks, but both are likely to start after playing pivotals roles in dismantling England in the previous round. However, Cacau has been ruled out entirely from featuing against Argentina on Friday, while Lukas Podolski missed some training in the lead up to the big game although is expected to start nonetheless. There are, though, a host of key players on the verge of missing the semi-final, should Germany qualify, through suspension; Per Mertesacker, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Mesut Ozil, Thomas Muller, Philip Lahm and Arne Friedrich.
Jonathan Mensah leaves coach Rajevac with a defensive void to fill, as the centre-half serves out a one-game suspension, as does Andre Ayew. It is, however, the news that Kevin-Prince Boateng, who opened the scoring against the United States in a 2-1 Round of 16 victory, is a massive doubt to feature against Uruguay on Friday, while three-goal forward Asamoah Gyan is recovering from an ankle injury sustained in that USA win. The latter is, however, expected to be fit in time for Friday’s showdown. Anthony Annan, Prince Tagoe, Isaac Vorsah and Lee Addy are one yellow card away from a suspension.
To the sheer delight of the Dutch contingency over in South Africa, Arjen Robben has seemingly found a new bill of health and after starting against Slovakia in the previous round, scoring the opener as well, Robben is set to start his second game in succession against Brazil. He remains Van Mariwjk’s only injury concern, while no player will serve out a suspension, although a whole host are one caution away from doing so; Stekelenberg, Van Der Wiel, Van Bronckhorst, Kuyt, Nigel de Jong, Robin Van Persie, Van der Vaart and Boulahrouz.
We haven’t been made aware of any injury setbacks, so coach Gerado Martino should have a full squad of 23 fit players to choose from, which is just as well considering their next assignment is against the current European champions, Spain. Their star man, Roque Santa Cruz, is a card away from missing a potential semi-final, as are Enrique Vera and Cristian Riveros.
Coach Vicente Del Bosque doesn’t appear to have any apparent absentee’s, although there are several carrying knocks or nursing minor injuries; Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Fernando Torres three of note. Xabi Alonso is the only player to receive a caution for Spain in the whole tournament so far, so only a red card would stop any of Spain’s stars from participating in the semi-final.
Nicolas Lideiro has already served a one-game suspension, but other than that manager Oscar Tabarez has little to worry his cotton socks over ahead of a daunting last-eight clash against the team the whole of Africa will be supporting in Ghana. Diego Lugano, Jorge Fucile and Mauricio Victorino are just a yellow card away from missing a tasty last-four encounter against either Brazil or Holland.
While we have done our utmost to notify everyone of any suspensions and injuries, we cannot guarantee that every piece of suspension/injury news will be reported. We will, however, update when and if we hear any news whenever necessary.