Tune in Friday at 2:30 PM ET as Uruguay takes on France in the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Rob Sturney will be liveblogging for your enjoyment.
Welcome everybody! This is game one of The Score's World Cup 2010 coverage. We'll be presenting 42 games, including all the "playoffs". Get out you vuvuzelas (or not) and let's get ready to roll! I'm Rob Sturney and we're just under an hour until the kickoff of Les Bleus vs. Los Charruas.
Today's opener was a dandy. South Africa was unlucky to have not taken the victory, though you can say the same for El Tri.
Lineups: Uruguay: Muslera, Lugano, Godin, Victorino, Perez, Arevalo, A. Pereira, Gonzalez, M. Pereira, Suarez, Forlan
France: Lloris, Evra, Abidal, Gallas, Sagna, Ribery, Diaby, Toulalan, Govou, Gourcuff, Anelka
It appears that Uruguay will be going with a flat back three, with plenty of midfielders and Suarez joining Forlan, the two time European Golden Boot winner, up front.
France will be using a more conventional 4-4-2 with Anelka as the forward and Gourcuff as a right center forward. Expect plenty of attacking down the left side through Evra, Diaby and Ribery, of course.
I'm a little bitter myself about that, gunturura, but in the interest of objective liveblogging I've left my Ireland jersey in the drawer for the day. Interestingly enough, I've drawn all three of France's group matches as my liveblogging assignment.
Uruguay have two stars over their crest, having won the Cup in 1930 and 1950. They fancy themselves as the hardmen of world football, and perhaps we'll see the brutish Juventus defender Martin Caceres who personifies this image.
France have had plenty of controversy and mayhem in their camp in preparation for these Finals. For one thing, they've gone from a 4-2-3-1 with two screening midfielders to a 4-3-3 to what looks to be a conventional 4-4-2.
This Group A is very interesting. Quite frankly, any two of the four can go through.
This game is being played in Cape Town, not as elevated as Jo'burg. Remember that this is South Africa's winter, and we probably won't see temperatures above 20 degrees C. That is quite different.
We should see less fatigue in the later stages of the games in low lying cities.
I love Uruguay's jerseys, by the way. There are quite a few kits that have really caught my eye in this tournament.
No one asked me or anything, but my prediction for this World Cup are Spain to win it, Argentina as runners-up, Brazil in third and England coming fourth. Now, no one record that and bring it up in early July, okay?
Having a bit of a problem with taking your comments, but hang in there. In the meanwhile, you can compile your top four predictions on a beer coaster and send it in when we're all sorted out.
I was very impressed with South Africa's keeper Khune in the opening game. Also, Dos Santos was very lively. A fine opener. By the way, Dikgacoi is apparently pronounced "Dee-gash-wee".
Tomorrow The Score will be liveblogging Argentina-Nigeria (me) and England-USA. Both should be corkers.
Both Uruguay and France had sketchy qualifiers to reach the Finals. France's, of course, was rather iffy. C'est la vie, Erie.
I'm hoping we get a look at French midfielder Valbuena, Tottemham's new man. He's known as a "jinker".
Hmmm. Odd that Malouda's been left on the bench. He's had a run of good form. Henry was to be expected.
I don't know about y'all, but I just looooove football pig-outs like the World Cup and Euro. I plan on watching every game this year under the guise of responsible, thorough journalism.
Central defense in the form of Gallas (a bit of a nutter) and Eric Abidal vs Forlan and Suarez will be key.
Ooh, the Marseille. Somewhere in heaven my granmere is singing . . .
What a year Ribery had for Bayern Munich. He really is quite something, that lad.
That's Marseillaise, je pense.
Okay, we're ready to go here.
I will eat a beret if France wins this World Cup. Avec fromage aussi.
Again, our apologies for the lack of your comments.
1 min: A nice flick by Uruguay.
2 min: Hey, nice long yellow socks, Muslera.
3 min: Watch for lots of action on France's left side.
3 min: Both teams just looking to string some passes together.
That was a close one, Nicola. Really close.
6 min: This game yet to catch fire. Lots of throw ins etc.
7 min: Evra, Diaby and Ribery combining to almost get Govou a goal!!
7 min: See? Left hand side. Perez and Victorino are going to have to be sharp.
8 min: Toulalan as grey as I am.
9 min: Perez clatters down Gourcuff. No free kick.
10 min: France getting the better pressure.
What a chance made by Ribery!
11 min: Diaby has a hopeful crack from 25 yards that sails over.