Armchair Pundit

World Cup cheat sheet: Day 17

Alex Chick

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It's that time again. England. Germany, It's going to be excruciating.

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Saturday's action

Uruguay 2-1 South Korea - Round of 16 - Port Elizabeth
Two Luis Suarez goals gave the enterprising South Americans a deserved place in the last eight. The Ajax striker struck early and late - he fired into an empty net from a tight angle on eight minutes after goalkeeper Jung Sung-Ryong failed to cut out a tame-looking Diego Forlan cross. And Suarez curled a beautiful shot in off the post with 10 minutes remaining to secure victory. Bolton's Lee Chung-Yong had equalised midway through the second half, heading in from close range following an error by Fernando Muslera.

USA 1-2 Ghana (aet) - Round of 16 - Rustenburg
Roared on by the South African fans, Ghana became only the third African team to reach the quarter-finals after Cameroon in 1990 and Senegal in 2002. The crowd also contained a sizeable number of England fans who had wrongly banked on the Three Lions winning their group. Kevin Prince Boateng got the Black Stars off to a tremendous start, firing in a low shot from the edge of the box on five minutes. The US came back strongly after a shaky start, and Landon Donovan levelled from the penalty spot just after the hour after Jonathan Mensah fouled Clint Dempsey. But Asamoah Gyan held off Carlos Bocanegra and lashed in a left-foot shot in the third minute of extra time to win it.

Quarter-final: Uruguay v Ghana - Soccer City - July 2 - 19.30

Sunday preview

Germany v England - Round of 16 - Bloemfontein - 15.00
Let's assume you know exactly the importance this one, and push straight on to the team news. Fabio Capello's squad has a clean bill of health, which means Ledley King could return to the centre of defence after his groin injury. Matthew Upson and Jamie Carragher are the other options to partner John Terry. Wayne Rooney has shown no ill-effects from his knock on the ankle against Slovenia and will start. Germany are without Brazilian-born striker Cacau, while key midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger is doubtful with a thigh injury. Defender Jerome Boateng is also a doubt, nursing a calf muscle. The winners will play either Argentina or Mexico.

Argentina v Mexico - Round of 16 - Soccer City - 19.30
Having nearly failed to qualify, Argentina have looked dynamic, skilful and united, and Diego Maradona is getting the best out of their host of attacking stars. Gonzalo Higuain and Carlos Tevez are among those returning after being rested, while Jonas Gutierrez is back after suspension. Walter Samuel remains an injury doubt with Nicolas Burdisso ready to deputise. Mexico are looking to avoid going out at the last 16 stage for the fifth consecutive World Cup.

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Beer-cooler chat: It's a scorching Sunday afternoon, so I suspect there will be more generic continental lager than water consumed today. The topic of conversation? Well, who needs talk when you've got the sheer mind-melting tension of the first England-Germany World Cup game since 1990.

But if you're looking for talking points, here's a recap of our massive big-match preview package:
Armchair Pundit: Ten reasons why England can win
'Arrogant' England enrage world's media
Germans know how to win on penalties
Classic England-Germany matches
England v Germany: The WAGs
Early Boers: 44 more years of hurt?
England v Germany: Matchcast at 3pm

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World Cup jargon: 28 Days Later

28 Days Later is a Danny Boyle film about post-apocalyptic Britain, famous for its shots of a man walking round a deserted London. I mention this, because if anyone fancies doing something similar, you've got about a two-hour window tomorrow afternoon.

TV ratings for England's three group games were 17.6m (USA), 18.8m (Algeria) and 12.8m (Slovenia - lower because daytime but a 78 per cent audience share). England-Germany should cruise past the 20m mark and if it does the real question is this: were there really 30m people in England who weren't watching the football?

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