World Cup 2006 "tough draw" for Asia-5 says AFC

"The five Asian teams at the 2006 World Cup got a tough draw," was the immediate reaction of the Asian Football Confederation's website after 32 nations were each allocated positions in one of eight groups for the next round of FIFA's four-yearly competition.

In Group F, Japan will go up against AFC newcomers Australia on 12 June 2006, in Kaiserlautern, and play Croatia on June 18 in Nuremberg, before clashing with Brazil in Dortmund on 22 June. After Japan, Australia, who qualified after an Oceania playoff against South American Uruguay, take on Brazil in Munich on 18 June and play against Croatia in Stuttgart on 22 June.

In Group G, 2002 semifinalists Korea Republic open their campaign against Togo on 13 June in Frankfurt, clash with France in Leipzig on 18 June and play Switzerland on 23 June in Hanover.

In Group D, Iran are first up against Mexico in Nuremberg on 11 June, play Portugal in Frankfurt on 17 June and then Angola in Leipzig on 21 June.

In Group H, Saudi Arabia kicks off against Tunisia on 14 June, play Ukraine in Hamburg on 19 June and come up against Spain in Kaiserlautern on 23 June.

The full draw:

Group A: Germany, Costa Rica, Poland, Ecuador; Group B: England, Paraguay, Trinidad and Tobago, Sweden; Group C: Argentina, Cote d'Ivoire, Serbia and Montenegro, The Netherlands; Group D: Mexico, Iran, Angola, Portugal; Group E: Italy, Ghana, USA, Czech Republic; Group F: Brazil, Croatia, Australia, Japan; Group G: France, Switzerland, South Korea, Togo; Group H: Spain, Ukraine, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia.


Former German international Wolfgang Overath suggested yesterday that the Islamic Republic of Iran, "should be banned" from the 2006 World Cup finals because of a new statement by its president that the Holocaust did not occur, which closely follows him calling for the majority-Jewish state of Israel to be "wiped off the map".

"We don't accept European countries saying that Hitler killed millions of Jews in furnaces and if Europeans want they should give some of their provinces to Zionists," president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad commented on the last day of the Organization of Islamic Conference meeting in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, as quoted by the Anadolu Newsagency of Turkey.

"Such comments from a head of state are really grounds enough to exclude a country," Overath said in an interview on German television ahead of the World Cup draw in Leipzig.

The Foreign Ministry of World Cup host country Germany told Reuters it had summoned Iran's ambassador to protest against the Iranian president's remarks.


FIFA will not kick out Iran from next year's World Cup in Germany despite calls from German politicians for it to be excluded because the country's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, denies the Holocaust. "FIFA strictly separates sports from politics," spokesman Andreas Herren said, as reported by the Ottawa Sun (16 Dec).


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Motto of different country FIFA2006 world cup team
1.We are football Germany on the road to gold Netherlands
3.Liberte,Egalite,Jules Rimet France
4.Never-ending legend,united Korea
5.2006,It's Swiss o'clock
6.A passion to win and a thirst to succeed country
7.angola lead the way,our team is our people
8.get up,argentina are on the move
9.australia's socceroos-bound for glory
10.vehicle monitored by 180 million brazilian hearts
11.our army is the team,our weapon is the ball,let's get to germany and give it our all Costarica
12.ecuador my life,football my passion,the cup my goal
13.come on the elephants!win the cup in style country nation,one trophy,eleven lions ENGLAND
15.go black stars,the stars of our world Ghana
16.stars of Persia pride,italy in our hearts
18.light up your samurai spirit Japan the finals with fire in our hearts Croatia
20.aztec passion across the world
21.from the heart of america...this is the guarani spirit
22.white and red,dangerous and brave Poland
23.with a flag in the window and a nation on the pitch,forca Portugal
24.the green hawks cannot be stopped Saudi Arabia
25.fight!show spirit!come on!you have the support of everyone Sweden
26.for the love of the game country
27.spain,one country,one goal
28 with our support,ukraine cannot fail to win come the soca warriors-the fighting spirit of the Caribbean
30.belief and a lion's strength,for victory and our fans Czech
31.the carthage eagles...higher and stronger than evercountry
32.united we play,united we winUNITED STATE
Dr Han(football fans)