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Page last updated at 06:51 GMT, Wednesday, 7 July 2010 07:51 UK

World Cup 2010: Cesc Fabregas passed fit to play semi

Venue: Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban Date: Web, 7 July Kick-off: 1930 BST Coverage: Live on BBC1 and BBC Radio 5 live | Highlights on BBC1 (2351) and BBC red button | Full repeat on BBC3 (0145 BST). Plus watch live, listen live, follow live text commentary and watch in-game highlights on this website.

David Villa

Germany v Spain preview

Spain midfielder Cesc Fabregas could start Wednesday's World Cup semi-final against Germany, after he was declared fit despite injuring his right leg.

Fabregas limped off the training pitch on Monday after a blow to the fibula he injured during Arsenal's season, but he took part in training on Tuesday.

Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque said: "He has trained well. We were worried, but he is available to play."

Del Bosque must decide whether to play Fabregas instead of Fernando Torres.

Liverpool striker Torres, 26, has yet to score in South Africa despite starting in four of Spain's five World Cup matches so far, while Fabregas has come on as a substitute in three of the games.

Fabregas, 23, wore a support strip down the back of his right leg in training on Tuesday and showed no discomfort as he participated in passing and possession drills in the first 15 minutes of a session that was open to media.

The Gunners midfielder cracked his right fibula back in March, missed the end of the season for Arsenal and had only just regained full fitness.

Cesc Fabregas

Fabregas looking for improvement in semi-final

Fabregas, who was in the Spain team that beat Germany in the Euro 2008 final, has so far been a bit-part player in Del Bosque's team but Torres also looks like he has been suffering from a knee injury sustained at Liverpool towards the end of last season, and Del Bosque may opt to alter his line-up.

Torres scored the winning goal when Spain beat Germany 1-0 in that European Championship final two years ago.

But he said he understood that his place may be under threat.

"No player is assured of a place in the starting XI," he said. "A player has to give 100% in his fight for a place in the team. But if he isn't given the nod by the boss, then he has to cheer on the side from the sidelines.

"If I score against Germany and it takes us to the final that would be unbelievable. I hope history can be repeated.

"We have done well in our last games against them but this German team is much better than the previous sides we have faced."

Meanwhile, Fabregas's future has been the subject of intense speculation with Arsenal already rejecting a bid from Barcelona.


Barcelona's new president Sandro Rosell said on Tuesday he would not be forced into paying an inflated price for Fabregas, a former youth player at the Nou Camp.

Rosell told a Spanish radio station: "We will never pay 50 or 60m euros (£41m or £49m) for Cesc."

Barcelona have already had one bid, rumoured to be around 35m euros (£29m), rejected and are expected to make a new offer after the World Cup.

Rosell added: "The whole world knows he wants to come and that we want to sign him.

"It's a topic that has become so public and that's the worst thing you can do with a transfer, because it makes the selling club raise their expectations and you end up paying over the odds."

Rosell said he hoped to be able to meet Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger in South Africa, where he is working as a match analyst for French television.

David Villa and Cesc Fabregas celebrate for Spain

Highlights - Paraguay 0-1 Spain

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see also
German lessons
05 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
European success delights Platini
06 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Spain can make history - Casillas
06 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Lahm out to keep German captaincy
06 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Podolski wants revenge over Spain
06 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Arsenal reject Barca Fabregas bid
02 Jun 10 |  Arsenal
Tuesday's World Cup round-up
06 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010

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Reuters UK Spain dream of final glory and emulating Brazil - 2 hrs ago 'We want to make history' - 2 hrs ago
Sky Sports Torres or not Torres? - 3 hrs ago
Clubcall Spain may go for a Fab start - 6 hrs ago Fabregas winning fitness battle - 10 hrs ago


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