Injury Robs S’Africa 2010 of Top Stars

In an unprecedented coincidence, a sudden rash of injuries sustained by some of the world’s top footballers, means that fans will not have the benefit of seeing them displaying their stuff on the world’s biggest stage – the FIFA World Cup which kicks off in South Africa on Friday.

At the weekend alone, Nigeria’s John Mikel Obi, Ivorian Didier Drogba and England’s Rio Ferdinand have all joined the growing list of star players who will be watching South Africa 2010 from the comfort of their living rooms after being ruled out of the Mundial on account of one injury or the other.

Obi pulled out of the Super Eagles over fears of aggravating his recuperating knee and Coach Lars Lagerback immediately replaced the Chelsea star with Sochaux striker, Brown Ideye.

In pulling out of the Nigerian squad yesterday, Mikel said he did not want to risk his career by playing when he had not fully recovered from the knee surgery he had last month.

Also, the fate of Cote d’Ivoire’s Didier Drogba also hangs in the balance after the Elephants’ skipper fractured his arm in the 2-0 friendly win over Japan last Friday.

The English team equally lost their skipper, Rio Ferdinand to injury last Thursday after the Manchester United star ended up worse in a freak training ground tackle with team mate, Emile Heskey.
The fate of Dutch danger man, Arjen Robben, also became uncertain yesterday after he picked up an injury during the 6-1 friendly rout of Hungary in Amsterdam.

A scan on the injured hamstring of the Bayern Munich star later today will determine if the 26-year-old winger will travel to join his team mates in South Africa. The Dutch team left last night.

Other well known stars who will not play in South Africa 2010 due to injury include German captain, Michael Ballack and his team’s first choice goalkeeper, René Adler, Ghana’s midfield dynamo, Michael Essien, England’s star, David Beckham and USA striker, Charlie Davies.

The World Cup kicks off this Friday at the Soccer City Stadium in Johannesburg with the opening game between hosts, South Africa and Mexico.

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