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World CUp Tickets in Low Demand

South Africa 2010 may be about to make more history. But not in a fashion that will please FIFA which has been forced to admit that, with just 11 weeks to go before the big kick-off on June 11, this is the first modern World Cup that has not completely sold out.
World Cup ticket

Of the 2.95 million tickets on offer, 650,000 still remain unspoken for, with 330,000 unsold among the 570,000 allocated to competing nations - worrying at 58%. Germany 2006, in contrast, received 15 million applications for just 3.4 million seats.

According to the Daily Mirror, England, expected to be among the best supported teams at the finals, have sent back 1,000 of the 29,000 allocated to the Football Association, who needed a three-month extension to sell that many. The heavy costs of flights and accomodation, security fears and the logistical problems of getting around a vast country with a limited infrastructure with competing teams not based in individual cities have been used as reasons for the mass stay-away.

FIFA, mounting a big push of sales until hosts South Africa play Mexico on the opening day, has released a statement: "Ticketing centres in host cities will now be open for sales until July 11, the day of the final, plus the call centre. There will be also mobile sales units." -- espn.com

Home Advantage Will Boost African

Home advantage will give an added boost to the six African teams who qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup - the first to be held on African soil, writes Nthambeleni Gabara.

South African fans are eagerly awaiting the referee's first whistle to signal the official kick-off of the highly anticipated match between Bafana Bafana and Mexico on June 11.

But going into the battlefield, at Soccer City, Bafana will be comforted by the sounds of the blaring vuvuzelas and the display of the national colours and flag.

While European based players like Didier Drogba (Chelsea), Steven Pienaar (Everton) and Samuel Eto'o (Inter Milan) are fan favourites, supporters will be looking at local stars like Siphiwe Tshabalala and Teko Modise to dazzle the crowd and show off their fancy footwork.

All these five African teams will not be appearing on the international soccer stage for the first time.

South Africa, who have come a long way since being banned by FIFA in 1962 as part of international sanctions against apartheid South Africa to being the host of a World Cup, made their World Cup debut in France in 1998. They also qualified in 2002, but failed to get past the group stages.

While their soccer prowess has been lacklustre in recent years, a home advantage may prove a winner for the 1996 African Cup of Nations champions.

During last year's Confederations Cup, Bafana finished in fourth place, coming through the group stages with a win over New Zealand and a draw with Iraq.

They then lost in the semi-finals to Brazil, conceding a late free-kick after holding the South Americans at bay for most of the match. In the 3rd-place play-off, they lost to Spain after extra time, despite leading 1-0 at one stage. But despite their loss, even the sceptics were impressed by their great display of football.

World Cup winning coach, Carlos Alberto Parreira, is already shaping and preparing the team in his native Brazil.

Recently, the Super Eagles (Nigeria) showed off their readiness for the showpiece when they appointed former Sweden coach Lars Lagerback as their new coach to lead them to the World Cup.

The Super Eagles, who reached the World Cup for the first time in the 1994 were within one minute of qualifying for the Quarter finals against Italy, but Roberto Baggio scored to take the game to extra time before eventually scoring the winning goal.

They returned to the World Cup in 1998 alongside Cameroon, Morocco, Tunisia, and South Africa. Their hopes of surpassing their 1994 performance were shattered after a 4-1 loss to Denmark.

The 2002 FIFA World Cup in Korea/Japan saw Nigeria again qualify with optimism. Nigeria's second game against Sweden saw them take the lead but, they lost 2-1 and there was little consolation when they drew 0-0 with England and bowed out in the first round.

The Nigerians, who missed out on qualifying for the 2006 World Cup, finished third in the recent African Nations Cup in Angola.

Cameroon or The Indomitable Lions is Africa's most successful side. They have qualified for the FIFA World Cup more than any other African nation; in 1982, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002 and 2010.

They were the first African team to reach the quarterfinals of the World Cup in 1990 losing to England in extra time.

A nine man Cameroon shocked the world by defeating reigning champions Argentina 1-0 with a goal scored by Omam Biyick.

They later defeated Romania 2-1 and lost to the Soviet Union 4-0, becoming the first African side to finish top of their group..

In the second round Cameroon defeated Colombia 2-1 with Roger Milla scoring two goals in the extra time.

The 1994 World Cup in the USA, after a convincing 2-2 draw with Sweden, the Indomitable Lions were determined to make an impact. However a 3-0 loss to Brazil and a 6-1 loss to Russia effectively ended their hopes of glory.

Despite drawing with Chile and Austria during the 1998 World Cup, a 3-0 defeat to Italy saw Cameroon finish bottom of the group, and they were eliminated as a result.

Another African powerhouse, Ivory Coast, will be appearing for the second time at the FIFA World Cup, following their first appearance in the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

They lost 2-1 to both Argentina and Netherlands; and were thus eliminated from the tournament. The Elephants are currently the only team without a head coach.

Ghana were the only African side to advance to Round 2 of the 2006 FIFA World Cup after Ivory Coast, Togo, Angola, and Tunisia were all eliminated.

Because of Ghana's performances in the tournament, there has been continuous praise for their fearless attitude towards the world's soccer giants.

Of the 32 countries that participated in the 2006 FIFA World Cup, Ghana was ranked 13th by FIFA.

Algeria managed to qualify to two consecutive World Cups in 1982 and 1986. Algeria beat North African rivals Egypt in a World Cup qualification tiebreaker to secure a place at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

But whether the teams lose in front of their home crowd they would have wanted to leave an indelible mark on the minds of their supporters. -BuaNews


Final Stadium Inspection Tour

The stadiums are in place, the seats in many have already been filled in a number of test events and now the final piece of the puzzle has begun. As the World Cup countdown clock ticks past 86 days to go, the 2010 FIFA World Cup Organising Committee South Africa (OC) and FIFA today embarked on the final stadium inspection tour.

The delegation kicked off the tour with a visit to Soccer City stadium this morning, as each department walked through the areas of the stadium that will affect their work during the tournament.

From media operations who need to ensure that the media facilities such as press conference rooms and media centres will be in place for the thousands of journalists expected at the stadium during the tournament, to marketing who need to ensure that there is sufficient signage to direct the hundreds-and-thousands of fans expected in Soccer City, it was a tough day of scrutinising the progress.

The final stadium inspection is a significant event as we head toward the beginning of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. With all the stadiums now largely complete we must ensure that the finer details are considered. We have come a long way since the first inspection tour and now we are ending that process – we have proved that we can get the infrastructure ready in time. Now it’s really the final check up to see that everything is going as it should,” said the Chief Executive Officer of the OC, Dr Danny Jordaan.

For Johannesburg’s 2010 Host City Coordinator, Sibongile Mazibuko – who oversees two World Cup stadiums in Soccer City and Ellis Park – the first day of the inspection was a success.

“We are moving closer to finalising all the outstanding issues. Overlay work has started and it is really starting to take shape,” said Mazibuko, referring to the process whereby a stadium is made World Cup compliant through the installation of temporary overlay infrastructure such as media and accreditation centres, hospitality areas, tournament specific signage and media tribunes to name just a few.

The stadium tour will continue on to the other nine stadiums over the next week, ending on 26 March when the delegation will return to the OC headquarters at SAFA House in Johannesburg.

source : www.fifa.com

Big Names on World Cup 2010 Gala

The Black Eyed Peas, Amadou & Mariam, Alicia Keys, John Legend and Shakira are big singers among the performers announced for the opening gala for this year's World Cup. The concert will take place on 10 June, at Orlando Stadium, in Johannesburg's Soweto district. More than 30,000 people are expected to pack into the arena, with millions more tuning in at home. From South Africa, Vusi Mahlasela will share African folk music with the world. Also flying the flag for the Rainbow Nation will be the Parlotones, who are sure to increase their international following with their energetic indie rock and alternative music.

Colombian artist Juanes, the winner of 17 Latin Grammy Awards as well as one Grammy, will show why he has sold over 10-million albums in the Spanish-speaking world with his mix of Latin rock and pop.

"Music and sports are the lifeblood of African culture, so to combine those in this historic event will be a true celebration of African culture," explained Lucas Radebe, an eloquent member of the South African team.

"We are thrilled to have a concert of such magnitude and performing talent raise the curtain on the first Fifa World Cup in Africa," Fifa secretary-general Jerome Valcke told Fifa.com this week.

Theo Walcott Booked A Bench for South Africa

All the focus this week has been on the injury to David Beckham which has ruled him out of the World Cup. He may be a popular player but  this time David will be not playing football for about 6 month.

The Achilles tendon injury clearly isn’t expected to hamper England’s chances at the World Cup as the England World Cup Odds remain unchanged and England are still one of the favourites to win the World Cup. What is much more worrying than the Beckham injury is Aaron Lennon’s groin injury that has kept him out all year. He has looked the complete right winger this season, skinning opponents, setting up goals with great crosses and also chipping in with goals now.

The next players on the list appear to be Capello favourite James Milner, the inconsistent Theo Walcott and also Shaun Wright Phillips, who appears to have booked a spot on Capello’s plans from a decent twenty minutes off the bench against Egypt.

Whatever happens it seems England are not short of options on the right wing but they could end up short of top quality options and that can sometimes make the difference between winning and losing.

With just a few month’s to go until the World Cup it is a great opportunity to get some early value bets in for the biggest football tournament in the world. 

source : www.worldcup2010southafrica.com


Durban Sky Car

With their World Cup stadium now complete and already hosting football matches, Durban residents cannot seem to get enough of the one-of-a-kind SkyCar that travels up and down the now famous arch of the Moses Mabhida Stadium.

The SkyCar leaves every five minutes to ferry up to 20 visitors at a time to the highest point of the arch, providing its passengers with a panoramic 360-degree view of Durban and the Indian Ocean coastline.

For those after more of an adventure, and a fair bit of exercise, there is the option of walking up the arch's steps to get to the top.

According to Lara Mcleod, the stadium's public relations officer, the stadium is proving to be a nucleus of activity as visitors flock to experience the adventure walk, stadium tour, or to ride the most popular attraction – the SkyCar.
Public response

"More than 60 000 people have taken part in at least one of the facilities at the stadium in just 12 weeks, and we are extremely pleased with how the public has responded," she said.

Mcleod said the SkyCar itself has attracted around 44 000 guests since it opened on 30 November, making it a key tourist attraction in the city.

Mounted on an undercarriage, the SkyCar is a single cabin that runs up steel tracks on the northern arch of the stadium. The design is impeccable, with the SkyCar built to descend under its own gravity, enabling it to return to the lower station even in the event of a power failure.

Mcleod says that the view at the top is unparalleled.
'One gets to see the entire city'

"One gets to see the entire city from the top. To the east there is the Indian Ocean, to the west the city suburbs, the north the Umgeni River, and one can even see the Bluff to the south. There is nothing quite like it."

Kameel Kalyan, who went up the SkyCar, said the view made him feel proud to live in Durban.

"The view from above puts together the pieces that make up the puzzle that is Durban," Kalyan said. "It makes you feel proud to live in Durban, and definitely shifted my idea of Durban."
The beauty of Durban

"If you want to truly understand the beauty that is Durban and admire the amazing view, then this is a must-see attraction for all, both locals and tourists."

Mcleod says that there has been a healthy mix of local and tourist patrons to the SkyCar.

"It is the only stadium in the world that has a sky-car or an adventure walk. Of course, stadiums have tours, but there is nothing in the world that compares to these activities."

Zahira Kharsany, a keen football fan from Durban who completed the adventure walk, couldn't agree more.

"The view is beautiful, with the ocean on one side and the city skyline on the other," Kharsany said. "Perhaps umbrellas are needed on the top when it is blistering hot, like the day we went up. My favourite view has to be the Golden Mile from a different vantage point," she added.
Operating hours

The SkyCar operates daily, running from 09:00 to 18:00 from Monday to Friday, and on Sunday.

On Saturday, visitors have the opportunity the chance to view Durban at night, with operating hours running from 07:00 to 22:00.

The cost is R50 for adults and R25 for children under the age of 12.

Source: 2010 Fifa World Cup South Africa Organising Committee

Didier Drogba Win African Footballer of The Year 2009

Didier Drogba has been named African Footballer of the Year 2009 by the Confederation of African Football. The award was voted on by all CAF member associations, who each picked their top three players (three points for first choice, two for second, one for third). Ivorian Drogba was the runaway winner with 92 points, Samuel Eto’o came second with 69 points and Michael Essien third with 42 points. Given Drogba’s form for Chelsea this season, it’s tough to argue with the votes.

This is Drogba’s second African Footballer of the Year win, after he collected the award in 2006. You could even argue it’s his third if you count 2007, where Drogba won but couldn’t attend the ceremony and so they gave it to Fredi Kanoute instead. Double D had pledged to “withdraw from all voting for CAF awards” at the time, but appears to have mellowed. Good news is that though Drogba couldn’t attend the Awards Gala in Accra, Ghana, CAF were still happy to let a representative from the Ivorian Football Federation receive the award on his behalf.

Fabio Capello : England vs Italy in the final

ABU DHABI - England manager Fabio Capello has set his team a minimum target of reaching the World Cup semi-finals in South Africa this year.

Capello said England were one of the leading sides at the tournament.

"I hope the semi-finals is a minimum. We have good players, we think we can beat all teams because we play at the same level of all the best teams in the world," the Italian told reporters at the Laureus World Sports Awards on Wednesday March 10th.

Capello, whose team cruised through qualifying after missing out on Euro 2008 under previous coach Steve McClaren, said England striker Wayne Rooney was one of the world's top players.

"(Lionel) Messi, (Cristiano) Ronaldo and Rooney are the three best players in the world. Rooney has scored a lot of goals," he said.

Rooney has netted 28 goals for Manchester United this term after being switched to a more attacking role following the transfer of Ronaldo to Real Madrid in the close season.

Capello also said sides from Africa, which is staging its first World Cup, could provide some shocks.

"I think the surprise will be one of the African teams - Ghana, Ivory Coast and Nigeria are all good. One of these three will be really dangerous."

England began their build-up to the tournament by beating Egypt 3-1 in a friendly at Wembley this month as preparation for the group match against fellow north Africans Algeria.

"It will be a tough game for us," said Capello. "I respect this team. They played against Egypt and beat them (in the World Cup qualifiers) so Algeria are probably stronger than Egypt."

The Italian, however, is looking beyond the early stages to a possible dream final with his native country.
"I hope to play against Italy in the final but my shirt at that moment will be an England shirt."

source : www.fourfourtwo.com

World Cup Team's Nickname

Below are nicknames for the FIFA 2010 World Cup Team

Algeria –
Argentina –
Australia –
Brazil –

Cameroon –
Chile –
Cote d’Ivoire –
Denmark –
England –
France –
Germany –
Ghana –
Greece –
Honduras –
Italy –
Japan –
Mexico –
Netherlands –
North Korea –
New Zealand –
Paraguay –
Portugal –
Serbia –
Slovakia –
South Africa –
South Korea
Spain –
Switzerland –
United States –
Uruguay –
Les Fennecs (The Desert Foxes)
Albicelestes (White and Sky blue)
Seleção (The Selection). Also Canarinhos (Little Canary) and Verde e Amarelo (Green and Yellow).
Lions Indomptables (Indomitable Lions)
La Roja (The Red)
Les Éléphants (The Elephants)
Olsens Elleve (Olsen’s Eleven)
The Three Lions
Les Bleus (The Blues)
National Mannschaft (National Team)
The Black Stars
To Piratiko (The Pirate Ship)
Los Catrachos
Azzurri (Sky Blues)
Blue Samurai
El Tri (after the three colours or “tricolor” on the Mexican flag).
All Whites
Super Eagles
La Albirroja (The White-Red) or Guaraní
Selecção das Quinas
Beli Orlovi (White Eagles)
Zmajceki (Dragons)
Bafana Bafana (The Boys)
Taeguk Warriors
La Furia Roja (Red Fury)
Schweizer Nati
The Yanks
La Celeste (The Sky Blue)


Transportation for World Cup 2010 Fans

Johannesburg - Park and ride, park and walk, public transport and taxis will all be used to get soccer fans to the game on time during the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

The City's Transport Department is ironing out various transport plans to get spectators to and from stadiums, public viewing sites and fan fests, reports Joburg.org.

"Part of the physical infrastructure is Joburg's flagship initiative, the Rea Vaya Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system," said Yolisa Mashilwane, the director of management support for transport in the City.

Rehana Moosajee, the member of the mayoral committee for transport, explains that Rea Vaya is expected to carry an estimated 20.000 spectators to Soccer City and Ellis Park, the two host stadiums.

Rea Vaya includes over 25 kilometres of dedicated lanes and more than 26 stations. Moosajee adds that phase 1A has been strategically implemented to meet the timeframes of the World Cup.

The full phase 1A runs from the south and west - Protea Glen, Mofolo Park, Naledi, Eldorado Park and Dobsonville - and from Ellis Park in the east. There is also an inner city circular route.

Mashilwane said there will be a special service during the tournament, which will mean a reduction in ordinary commuter services, especially on match days. The service will focus on spectators travelling to and from the stadiums.

There will be three park and ride spots, where spectators can park their cars and take a shuttle service to and from the games. Their cars will be guarded and parking will carry a fee. Accredited buses and taxis will provide the shuttle service.

Park and rides will be set up a the University of the Witwatersrand West Campus, on Enoch Sontonga Avenue in Braamfontein, Bezuidenhout Valley Park, on Marcia Street in Observatory and Gold Reef City, on Data Crescent in Ormonde.

Park and walks have also been arranged for spectators to park their vehicles and walk on a designated route to the stadiums. One venue has been allocated for each stadium; spectators will have to pay to use them.

For Ellis Park, the park and walk is at Athlone Boys School on Third Street in Bezuidenhout Valley. The walk is 2.21 kilometres.

For Soccer City, the park and walk is at Aeroton Park, off Randshow Road in Aeroton. The walk is 2.42 kilometres.

Mashilwane said transport options during the tournament will include Metrobus, mini-bus taxis and metered taxis which will extend their operating hours and may adjust their routes to ensure that fan parks and fan villages are serviced.

In addition, inter city and inter provincial services will be provided from the beginning of June until a few days after the final in July. There will be extra buses operating on match days and others connecting Gauteng with Polokwane, Mbombela, Rustenburg and Bloemfontein.

Buses will also be used to connect OR International and Lanseria airports to Sandton and the Joburg inner city.

Metrorail and Shosholoza Meyl will also run additional services from all parts of the country, and it is likely that Gautrain will be operational from OR International Airport to Sandton Station. There will be Gautrain feeder and distribution buses servicing Rivonia, Rosebank, Sandton and the inner city.

With FIFA's headquarters in Sandton, the International Broadcasting Centre at Nasrec next to Soccer City in the south, and a Football for Hope Tournament scheduled for No 3 Square in Alexandra, Joburg will be a hub of activities.

The City has also allocated certain areas for public viewing. These include Township TV sites, public viewing areas and Fan Festivals.

These areas include Innes Free Park - Fan Festival in Sandton, Elkah Stadium - Fan Festival in Soweto, Mary Fitzgerald Square - Public viewing area in Newtown, Ivory Park - Township TV.

Other areas that will have Township TV include Diepsloot Park, Orange Farm Regional Park, Kremetart Eldorado Park, Diepkloof Extreme Park, Orlando West, Thokoza Park, Joubert Park and Rose Avenue Park in Lenasia. 

Bonus for Brazil, england and Spain

Every member of the Spanish World Cup squad travelling to South Africa later this year will pick up a cool €550,000 if they win the World Cup.

This is the largest known bonus figure for any squad and more than double what the Spanish squad won when winning the Euro 2008.

Other teams to announce tournament win bonuses include Brazil National Team, who will pay out €300,000 a man and The Three Lions who will pay out €450,000 a man - but are these players really incentivised by money?

Maybe Sapin and England will be the finalist at the end of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

source : worldcup2010southafrica.com

Most World Cup 2010 Tickets sold in USA

As of the third ticketing phase, managed by FIFA, 2.1 million tickets had been sold for the event and of that number 107,576 had gone to America and England were second highest with 63,835 tickets sold.

Coming in third was Germany with 29,733, closely followed by Australia with 26,488 tickets sold.

The fourth phase of the ticketing process began on February 9th and ends on April 7th and prior to this phase opening, 311,271 tickets were still available for sale to the general public. If you haven't yet got one, but in tend on travelling, you should order quickly.

At the moment, 194,349 tickets have been confirmed which leaves 116,922 available. You do not want to be buying tickets from a tout at hugely high prices, just because you left it too late.

More tickets will become available for previously sold out matches as and when FIFA get back allocations set aside for specific organisations, but there are no guarantees you will get one of these if you haven't entered the 'random selection draw sales phase' which closes on on 31st March 2010.


A Huge Lost For Portugal Team

Jose Bosingwa, one of the best full-back of Portugal teams will be not playing in 2010 FIFA World Cup. He require surgery on his knee injury.

Bosingwa had been back in light training after knee surgery but has now been ruled out for the season because another operation is required.

Chelsea assistant boss Ray Wilkins confirmed Bosingwa, who has played 57 games for Chelsea since signing from Porto in May 2008, needed a second operation. So he will miss the whole season in EPL and World Cup.

National Team Base Camp

South Africa : Southern Sun Grayston Hotel, train at Sandown High School in Johanesburg
Honduras : Indaba Hotel
Mexico : Thaba ya Batswana
Netherlands : Hilton Sandton
North Korea : Protea Hotel Midrand
Serbia : Sunnyside Park Hotel
Slovenia : Hyde Park Southern Sun

Argentina : High Performance Centre
Germany : Velmore Hotel in Centurion
Italy : Leriba Lodge
Slovakia : Villas Luxury Suite Hotel
USA : Irene Country Lodge
Australia : Kloofzicht Lodge near Muldersdrift on West Rand
New Zealand : Serengeti Estate near OR Tambo International Airport
Switzerland : Emerald Resort and Casino

Algeria : Zimbali Lodge near Ballito
Cameroon : Oyster Box in Umhlanga
Greece : Beverly Hills Hotel at Umhlanga Rocks
Ivory Coast : Riverside Hotel and Spa in Durban
Nigeria : Hampshire in DUrban
Paraguay : Woodridge COuntry Estate in the Midlands
Portugal : Valley Lodge in Hillcrest

Brazil : Fairway in Cape Town
Denmark : Simola Hotel Country Club in Knysna
France : Pezula Resort Hotel and Spa in Knysna
Japan : Fancourt Hotel and Country Club outside George

England : Bafokeng Sports Campus in Rustenburg
Spain : North West University campus in Potchefstroom
South Korea : Hunters Rest Hotel in Rustenburg

Chile : Ingwenyama Conference Centre
Eastern Cape
Ghana : Rhode Valley
The Northern Cape
Uruguay : Protea Hotel Kimberley


Cheap World Cup Tickets For South African People

World Cup organizers on Thursday agreed to increase the number of cheaper seats offered to South Africans to 29 percent of total tickets for this year’s tournament. Local Organizing Committee CEO Danny Jordaan told reporters the LOC board of directors had decided to raise the allocation from 11 percent to give poorer South Africans more chance of seeing tournament.
The decision should help sell tickets amid sluggish sales to foreigners but may also knock expected revenue from the month-long tournament, starting in South Africa on June 11.
Jordaan said the decision followed appeals from fans, trade unions and politicians to accommodate poor South Africans, but stressed that the loss of income would not harm the running of the tournament.
“We have made this commitment that we want the tournament to be affordable, that those football fans who have been supporting football for all of these years must now not be excluded,” he said.
“Therefore we should then move the percentage of tickets available in category 4 to 29 percent and therefore accommodate all of those who made the ticketing request in category 4.”
Category 4 tickets are specially-priced for South African residents at 140 rand ($17.95) for group matches, a quarter of the price of the cheapest tickets in other categories. They are still more than six times the cost of seats for local premier league matches.
Critics have long argued that the price of tickets were too expensive for most soccer fans in South Africa, where tens of millions of people live in poverty.
“At the beginning we argued … that you have to take into account that football fans in South Africa are working class people of low income, and therefore we created a special category 4 ticket,” Jordaan said. “What we saw from the ticket requests from South Africans is much more than 11 percent.”
So far 2.24 million tickets have been sold, leaving 660,000 still available just over 100 days before the start of the World Cup.

FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke told reporters earlier this week that organizers would not cut ticket prices to ensure capacity stadiums, although FIFA could look to increase the category 4 tickets to 20 percent.

South Africa Airlines Preparation

South Africa has launched an inquiry into possible price-fixing by domestic airlines and officials have expressed concern about huge price increases by hotels, especially those outside the official grading structure.

“There will be no ripping off of any of the passengers by artificially increasing the airline ticket prices,” Motlanthe said, although substantial increases have already taken place.
South Africa’s airports are 90 percent ready to handle 120,000 extra flights — double the normal capacity — during the World Cup, the company running them said on Tuesday.
Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) said preparations would be complete by June after a 17 billion rand ($2.22 billion), program of updates and expansion.

“With exactly 100 days to go, we are confident that… we will be ready to meet the requirements of this major event,” said Chris Hlekane, General Manager of Johannesburg’s O.R Tambo International Airport, which will be the World Cup hub.
South Africa has invested billions of dollars getting ready for the continent’s first World Cup, but hopes to recoup that and more through investment and tourism in the years to come.

FIFA World Cup Unite South Africa People

The World Cup will do even more to forge a united South Africa than Nelson Mandela’s success in pulling a divided country together through the 1995 world rugby tournament, the chief organizer said on Thursday.

Danny Jordaan, chief executive of the local organizing committee, also said FIFA would introduce special charter flights and direct ticket sales in response to African anger at the difficulty of attending the continent’s first soccer World Cup.

“It is always important to further strengthen social cohesion in our country, to strengthen nation building, and I think that in this regard the impact is going to be massive, much more than the 1995 (rugby) World Cup,” said Danny Jordan.

Jordaan told a news conference the soccer spectacular was much bigger, with 32 instead of 16 teams and six African sides instead of one, plus huge interest in South America and Asia.
Despite joy across the continent that Africa is staging its first World Cup, there is anger that high prices and complex ticketing have made attending the event impossible for many Africans. Ticket sales are very low elsewhere in Africa.

Jordaan said FIFA would respond to this by organizing over-the-counter direct ticket sales and charter flights in the five other African countries that have qualified for the finals.
Fans in South Africa and other countries have complained that the normal system of buying tickets over the Internet is unsuitable for Africa where supporters have little access to computers and are not used to booking in advance. Asked if FIFA’s reaction was too late and mistakes had been made, Jordaan said: “It is something that certainly must be taken on board for Brazil”. Brazil will host the 2014 World Cup.

He said the new system had been discussed last year and could be implemented quickly.
Many fans wanting to travel to South Africa from Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Cameroon –three of the qualifiers–would currently have to fly via Europe on scheduled flights.

In a news conference at Wembley stadium on Thurdsay, President Jacob Zuma said foreign visitors should not be deterred by fears about security in South Africa which has one of the world’s highest rates of violent crime. “We’re ready to protect those who come. If there are people who are skeptical or feeling concerned, they must know they can come to South Africa safely…,” he said.

Zuma and Jordaan said they were confident in World Cup security measures, which will include mobilizing 41,000 police to protect visitors, but the country would remain vigilant.
Jordaan expressed concern about high prices for hotels and internal flights which have deterred even some European fans from attending the tournament.
He said he was looking forward to the results, expected by the end of March, of government inquiries into high hotel prices and possible price-fixing by domestic airlines.
“We want to see fans coming back and increasing tourism into South Africa…this is a huge opportunity but we must not lose our reputation as a value for money destination,” he said.
Asked about his remaining worries before the tournament starts on June 11, Jordaan cited the completion of areas around stadiums and access roads, which in some places still look like construction sites.

source : proreferee.com

World Cup Tickets No Discount

FIFA have denied reports that they will cut World Cup ticket prices or give away free seats to ensure capacity stadiums at the finals in South Africa later this year.
“There is no question of bringing down any prices,” FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke told a news conference on Tuesday in the wake of weekend media reports saying FIFA would reduce ticket prices to increase sluggish sales.
Valcke said 11 percent of stadium capacity was currently made up of category-four tickets and FIFA hoped to increase this to 20 percent for most games at the June 11-July 11 finals.
“This was a promise that the FIFA president (Sepp Blatter) made to the South African government,” Valcke said.
“We will do our best to get up to 20 percent for most of the matches but we will not discount any ticket prices and we’ll not give any tickets away. There will never be a free ticket for the World Cup.”
He said he expected ticket sales to cover the $423-million budget for organizing the World Cup in South Africa.
“We are trying at a difficult time for the world. The economic crisis has had an impact. We are not desperate, we are in a very good mood.”


Looking for World Cup Tickets

If you have not yet had success in obtaining world cup tickets via the FIFA website but are determined to get your hands on some tickets for a World Cup match in South Africa next year, our message to you, is be careful and keep trying at FIFA.

It was reported in September that up to 100 websites were selling tickets that don´t exist and as the event gets closer more and more of these websites are going to appear with the same promise of tickets for matches you thought impossible to get.

So, our message to be careful is an important one. Some of these websites will look very much like they have the tickets or that they are authorised to sell tickets and they might even advertise this fact - it doesn´t mean that they are or that they can.

Where to buy tickets?
Your first port of call should be the FIFA website. Phase three of the ticketing process has begun and it closes on January 22nd. After that, you only have two more phases to get tickets through FIFA and this will be the cheapest and most effective way for individual tickets.

Tour operators selling World Cup tickets
FIFA have also approved a large number of tour operators all over the world to sell tickets as part of a package. If you are looking for travel and accommodation with a ticket there are a number of companies that can arrange this for you.

Fortunately, FIFA have also created a list of approved tour operators and you can view that list here. If you want to be confident that you are buying a ticket from an approved supplier then you must check this list. If they are not listed they are not approved - check the list first!

- www.southafrica.info -

100 Days to Count Down Festival

Sandton - An electric vibe could be felt on the streets of Sandton, Johannesburg, on Tuesday, as party-loving city dwellers geared up for the 100 days countdown to the 2010 FIFA World Cup celebrations.

Joburgers ditched their business suits and uniforms for football jerseys, while dancers took to the streets to celebrate the countdown.

People who gathered at Maude Street for the street party got into the spirit by wearing their green and yellow Bafana Bafana jersey, blowing the vuvuzela trumpets that are ubiquitous at local matches and waving the national flag.

About 200 school children from the Joburg Home for Vulnerable Children and Sizwile School for the Deaf were also in attendance, flying the South African flag proudly.

Vuvuzelas and soccer balls were offered as prizes for competitions that were held at the venue.

Entertainment included the dazzling Diski dancers who taught everyone their moves while music, games, quizzes and live artists such as Steve Hofmeyer and Karen Zoid entertained the crowd.