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International Friendlies Tuesday Wrap: Netherlands and Portugal register wins, African teams disappoint

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Another round of friendlies took place last night with 7 of our 32 finalists taking part and pitting themselves against opposition that will help them prepare well for the FIFA World Cup, beginning in 10 days time. Four European teams were in action, the Netherlands, Portugal, Denmark and Switzerland taking the stage while Ghana and Cameroon were the two teams from the host continent who took part in warm up games. Australia who are representing the Asian confederation this year were the 7th finalist team to play a game last night.

robin_van_persie.jpgNetherlands 4 - 1 Ghana

The Dutch comfortably thwarted the talented Black Stars when the two faced off at Rotterdam last night. Goals from Dirk Kuyt in the first half and Rafael van der Vaart, Wesley Sneijder and a penalty from Robin van Persie in the second half completed the bashing by the Oranje. Asamoah Gyan's goal in the 78th minute pulled one back for the visiting Ghanaian team with the Dutch having scored two already by that time, but it turned out to be consolation in the end, with the home team running riot. Oranje dominated possession and converted their chances very well and one would do well to look out for them in this edition of the FIFA World Cup. The Hungarians await the raging Dutch train before Bert van Marwijk's team moves on to the World Cup. Ghana will take on Latvia on the 5th of June before kick starting their 2nd ever World Cup campaign against Serbia.

Portugal 3 - 1 Cameroon

Within 2 minutes of the Portuguese's opening goal Cameroon Captain Samuel Eto'o got himself booked twice and consequently sent off compelling his team to play the rest of game with 10 men. Raul Meirless added his second of the night in the 47th minute. Carlos Queiroz's team were cruising at this point with a two goal cushion and a man advantage before they were brought to a sudden halt by Real Mallorca striker Pierre Webo. Cameroon looked to have clinched a lifeline but Nani put the game beyond their grasp in the 81st minute with a goal. Portugal take on Mozambique, Querioz's birth country on the 8th of June while the Indomitable Lions take on Serbia before kick starting their World Cup campaign.

Australia 1 - 0 Denmark

The Socceroos took on Denmark in a friendly played in South Africa. The Australians were coming into this one on the back of a 7 game unbeaten streak that stretched back to October last year. The Danes on the other hand were coming off a comfortable win over African side Senegal. The team from down under won the game through Japan based striker Joshua Kennedy in 70th minute. It was the 27-year olds 7th goal for the national team that clinched the game for the Aussies. Both teams have one friendly each to play with Australia taking on USA and Denmark taking on the World Cup hosts South Africa.

Switzerland 0 - 1 Costa Rica

Ottmar Hitzfeld's Swiss team hosted Costa Rica at home in preparation for the FIFA World Cup this summer. They lost at home through a solitary goal to a side that is placed 18 places below them in the world rankings. The Costa Ricans failed to make it to the World Cup finals after losing to Uruguay in the play-offs. 28-year old striker Winston Parks scored the winner for the away team in the 57th minute. The defeat will hurt Hitzfeld as his opponents were coming off some really bad results in their last few fixtures. The Swiss take on defending World Champions Italy on the 6th of June before facing favourites Spain in their World Cup opener.

File Photograph Copyright: Ryu Voelkel

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