South Africa, the hosts of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, will take on Mexico in the appropriately named “Soccer City” stadium for the opening match of the tournament.
The sides line up for their Group A match as follows:
South Africa Starting 11
Khune, Gaxa, Mokoena, Thwala, Khumalo, Tshabalala, Pienaar, Modise, Letsholonyane, Dikgacoi, Mphela.
South Africa Substitutes
Josephs, Masilela, Ngcongca, Sibaya, Davids, Booth, Parker, Nomvethe, Moriri, Sangweni, Walters, Khuboni.
Mexico Starting 11
Perez, Rodriguez, Aguilar, Osorio, Salcido, Torrado, Marquez, Juarez, Vela, Franco, Giovani.
Ochoa, Barrera, Castro, Blanco, Hernandez, Moreno, Guardado, Magallon, Torres, Bautista, Medina, Michel.
Match Referee: Ravshan Irmatov (Uzbekistan)
South Africa will look to ensure that they don’t become the first host nation to lose the opening match in the history of the World Cup, and, with the vuvuzelas blaring, it looks like being the sort of carnival atmosphere that might well see them overcome today’s difficult opponents, Mexico.
Expect pace in the South Africa attack from Pienaar while both Mexican forwards offer a real threat up front. There will be at least one goal in this match, providing the players have got to grips shooting with the new “Jabulani” ball.
Ordinarily, Mexico would win this match a little comfortably, perhaps 3-1 or 2-0, but this is no ordinary match. As a curtain raiser, it is set to be fantastic.