Bring your shovels, lads.
Rumours from the Barrio Sur and all the way up the Avenida 18 de Julio is that Uruguay will be based in Kimberley. You heard right. That's the City of Limitless Opportunities, the City of Big Rocks and even Bigger Holes. The home of De Beers and his Peers.
Uruguayan Ambassador to South Africa, Guillermo Pomi, when interviewed yesterday, said Kimberley is about 500 kilometers from Rustenberg and about 600 kilometers from Cape Town, adding that it is "home to the largest platinum mine in South Africa and has a very quiet, rural feel."
Las Montevidenas are advised against digging in their mud.
Rumours of Kanye West Ft. Nas, Lupe Fiasco & Jay-Z performing at half time of today's Nacional Peñarol Classico at the Centenario are unfounded. Defeat for Peñarol will end their season. League leaders Nacional are favourites, but keep your eye on Liverpool lurking in 2nd place.
Enjoy this clip of Uruguay versus France in the 1966 World Cup.
They just managed to get the last dog race off before kick off. The good ole days at White City.
Uruguay 2 v 1 France. Watch out for the rocket from Pedro Rocha (about 3 minutes in), the Uruguayan No. 10. And a good finish from Julio Cesar Cortes for the winner.
And why not a little bit of Uruguay's greatest ever singer, Alfredo Zitarrosa.
Time for a little Daniel Viglietti before the draw.
SOY CELESTE...SOY CELESTE...SOY CELESTE....
Watch closely as Jose Andrade makes the greatest goal and game saving tackle of all time!
You can see it 2 minutes into this clip of the 1930 World Cup Final.
Final Score. Uruguay 4 v 2 Argentina.
SOY CELESTE...SOY CELESTE...SOY CELESTE...
Uruguay has 4 Stars on their shirts because...("BUZZ...Jesus, Jones College, Cambridge") because...Uruguay have been World Champions on 4 occasions: 1924, 1928, 1930 and 1950. The Gold Medalists of Paris and Amsterdam were recognized as World Champions by FIFA.
Uruguay has never played a fixture against 5 of the 2010 World Cup qualifiers. They are: Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea, Greece, and Nigeria. It is possible for Uruguay to play against Greece and or North Korea in the 1st Round in South Africa for the first time. Los Charrúas will have to wait until the later rounds to get its claws into the Lions Indomptables, Les Éléphants and or the Super Eagles...Garra Charrúa!!!
Uruguay has beaten Argentina on 54 occasions, including the 1930 World Cup Final.
Uruguay has scored more goals against Argentina than any other qualifier. 213. Count them. Más goles! Menos culata tranplantes!
Uruguay has beaten Brazil on 20 occasions, including the final fixture of the 1950 World Cup Final. Uruguay's victory ensured they lifted the World Cup in Brazil.
Uruguay is ranked 19th by FIFA, but is ranked 10th by Nate Silver, he of Soccer Power Index fame.
Uruguay has never beaten Algeria, Denmark, Germany, Honduras, Portugal, or Spain. Uruguay could face three of those nations in the first round.
Germany, Honduras, Uruguay and Portugal could be El Otro Grupo de la Muerte!
Slovenia is the smallest nation to qualify for a World Cup. Uruguay is the smallest to win a World Cup!
Uruguay has a one in three chance of facing hosts South Africa in the 1st Round.
Does Uruguay want to play the hosts? Probably. Of the other seeded nations, Uruguay only has a winning record against England.
Uruguay has played England on 10 occasions, winning 4, drawing 3.
Uruguay has played Germany on 8 occasions, losing 6, drawing 2.
Uruguay has played Italy on 6 occasions, winning 1, losing 2, drawing 3.
Uruguay has played the Netherlands on 2 occasions, winning 1, losing 1.
Uruguay has played Spain on 8 occasions, losing 2, drawing 5.
Uruguay fear no one. Uruguay has a reputation for thuggish tackling and extracurricular trickery. The post-dictatorial generation were the most accomplished violators, yet the "Dossier on Uruguay" remains stuck on 1970s and 1980s stereotypes. Uruguay deserves to have that recycled and tired tag torn from the narrative. South African will provide Uruguay with that opportunity.
Uruguay can win the World Cup. All Uruguayans believe Uruguay can win the World Cup. Winning the World Cup is a Uruguayan state of mind. It is this belief that gives Uruguay the edge over other qualifiers.
SOY CELESTE...SOY CELESTE...SOY CELESTE
Nate Silver is a box score genius. Nate Silver can call states, counties and wards like no other. But can Nate predict the winner of the World Cup?
Some of our global readers may find Nate Silver’s statistical offerings on “soccer” other worldly. Who is this four eyed American running the numbers on our game, I hear some of you dismissively spit. But can it be true one can only understand football if one starts drinking about eleven in the morning in a backstreet pub or bar in the vicinity of some corrugated contraption called a football ground. There has to be a middle ground. Nate Silver deserves the utmost respect. But you know among the remnants of ale, chips, pies and gravy that your guts can tell you something Nate’s numbers cannot.
Ten Pot observations.
1. FIFA got the seedings right. Pot 1 seeds earned their ranking. France did not. France's final appearance was four years ago.
2. Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay have come out of the pot alignment better than most. Each of the smaller South American nations will avoid the big five African qualifiers in the 1st Round.
3. Argentina and Brazil cannot avoid the African qualifiers from Pot 3. The seeds for two potential Groups of Death have now been sown. Has FIFA put Brazil at risk for an early bath?
4. The most frightening Group of Death would be: Brazil, Mexico, Côte d’Ivoire and Portugal.
5. The dark horse of Pot 2 is Honduras.
6. The tournament's top scorer will probably find his country drawn against New Zealand in the 1st Round.
7. Slovenia will not be the dark horse of Pot 4. Slovakia might be.
8. South Africa need the luck of the draw more than most. The hosts will hope to be grouped with both New Zealand and Slovenia. So will every other team from Pots 1 and 3, for that matter.
9. Algeria could draw both France and Germany. The Desert Foxes will appreciate the luck of being thrown into that particular garlic and beer feed chicken coop.
10. Italy could renew some old acquaintances. North Korea can beat Italy, again. And Chile can beat Italy up, again.
Move over, Heidi. Johnny Clegg coming.
The FIFA Organising Committee came correct today. The decision to base the procedure for the Final Draw of the 2010 World Cup on the October 2009 World Ranking is a good one. The ranking system was raw, but now it is refined and provides a rather useful way to measure the relative successes and failures of the world's footballing nations.
South Africa will be joined by Brazil, Spain, the Netherlands, Italy, Germany, Argentina and England as the seeded teams in Pot 1.
The other 24 teams will be divided into the 3 pots, each with 8 teams.
Pot 2 will consist of teams from Asia (Australia, Japan, Korea DPR, Korea Republic), North, Central America and the Caribbean (Honduras, Mexico, USA) and Oceania (New Zealand)
Pot 3 will include teams from Africa (Algeria, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria) and South America (Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay)
Pot 4 will contain the remaining European teams (Denmark, France, Greece, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and Switzerland)
South Africa will be automatically positioned in Group A; the other seeded teams will be drawn into the other groups B-H.
Geographical criteria will also accounted for, ensuring no two teams from the same confederation will be drawn in the same group (except European teams, where a maximum of two will be in a group).
Bring it on.