FIFA World Cup: The touchline

FIFA World Cup: The touchline

The 35-year-old Forlan, who was voted the top player of the 2010 WC isn’t ready to announce his retirement.

Cameroon, Ghana to probe performances
The presidents of Cameroon and Ghana have called for investigations following disappointing World Cup showings that saw both countries eliminated during the group stage. In Cameroon, state media said President Paul Biya had given his prime minister one month to submit a report on the Indomitable Lions’ “inglorious campaign”. The report is expected to include steps for “a profound and deep restructuring of Cameroonian football”. Ghana President John Mahama also said an investigation was needed to figure out why Ghana failed to advance to the knock-out rounds for the first time in three World Cup appearances. Mahama has already replaced the country’s sports minister along with his deputy. Both teams placed at the bottom of their groups. Both teams faced disciplinary problems at different stages in the World Cup over bonuses, suspensions and squad disharmony.

Chile set to receive heroes welcome
Chile’s so nearly conquering heroes are sure of an incredible welcome on their return from a World Cup where they eliminated champions Spain but were cruelly knocked out by Brazil for the fourth time in their history. “The dream is over, but not the applause,” said La Tercera newspaper in a chorus of praise round the nation. “Dry your tears and come back to Chile to be received with full honours.” One of the strongest Chile teams seen at a World Cup, ‘La Roja’ lit up the tournament from swashbuckling wins over Australia and Spain to a heart-breaking loss on penalties to Brazil after a pulsating 1-1 draw in the last-16 clash.

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Forlan not to quit just yet
Diego Forlan isn’t ready to announce his retirement from international football, even though he knows that at his age the clock is certainly ticking. The 35-year-old Forlan, who was voted the top player of the 2010 World Cup, played sparingly this time for Uruguay — each time as a substitute for Luis Suarez. He played an hour in a 3-1 loss to Costa Rica in a group game when Suarez was still recovering from knee surgery, and 53 minutes in Saturday’s 2-0 second-round loss to Colombia, when Suarez was out suspended for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini. “I want to play football,” Forlan said. “I still love to be on the field. I know there’s going to be a generational change. That’s to be expected, and I’m 35. But I’m always willing to help and be around.” Forlan signed an 18-month contract earlier this year with Japanese club Cerezo Osaka and is expected to fulfill it.     (Agencies)