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Page last updated at 06:22 GMT, Sunday, 11 July 2010 07:22 UK

Sunday's World Cup round-up

Howard Webb
Webb is the first Englishman to referee the World Cup final since Jack Taylor in 1974

One of the keys to Howard Webb's success - which has led to the Yorkshireman being chosen to referee Sunday's World Cup final - is the work he has put into toughening up mentally for the task of top flight refereeing.

This is the view of sports psychologist Ian Maynard, who has worked with Webb for five years as part of training offered at Sheffield Hallam university's Centre of Sport and Exercise Science.

"A lot of our work has been to try to stop him [Webb] taking things too much to heart," said Maynard. "He has done a lot of work on his mental toughness. He doesn't hide when a decision needs to be made. That's why he has got the final."

England boss Fabio Capello will return to England this week for two days of talks with the Football Association, with the future of his number two Franco Baldini likely to be high on the agenda of talking points.

Baldini is highly trusted by Capello, who wants his fellow Italian to remain in his role, but the general manager is seeking assurances from the FA that he remains a valued member of the team.

Capello agreed with the FA to honour his contract as coach, which runs for a further two years, despite England's lacklustre performance at the World Cup, which saw them exit in the second round via a 4-1 defeat by Germany.

Netherlands midfielder Nigel de Jong says he would emulate the goal-saving handball committed by Uruguay striker Luis Suarez in the semi-final against Ghana if it meant helping his side win the World Cup on Sunday.

Suarez has been criticised for his intentional handball which prevented Ghana scoring in the last minute of extra-time in the semi-final. He was sent off and a penalty was awarded to the Black Stars, which they missed. Uruguay eventually won the game via a penalty shootout.

"If I couldn't reach it with my head then of course I would punch it away from the goal - just like Luis Suarez did for Uruguay," said De Jong. "He was going to do anything possible to make sure his team won and I can totally understand that."

Spain's players will each earn £500,000 if they lift the World Cup on Sunday.

Captain Iker Casillas and vice-captains Xavi and Carles Puyol met Spanish FA officials prior to the tournament to agree the bonus system, which dwarfs the £300,000 they each received for winning the European Championships in 2008.

It is also almost double what the Netherlands players would receive were they to beat Spain at Soccer City.

South Africa World Cup organising chief Danny Jordaan is targeting bringing the Olympics to South Africa as a means of continuing the progress made through hosting the 2010 World Cup.

The tournament - the first to be held on African soil - has been widely viewed as a success, helping to improve the country's economy and transport infrastructure, while also promoting social unity.

"It was only 20 years ago with apartheid when black and white couldn't have sat in a stadium together, couldn't have attended the same school or gone to the same beach,'' Jordaan said. "This World Cup has shown a non-sexist, non-racist, democratic South Africa. The nation has crossed a huge psychological barrier. There has been a special unity.''

"How do we maintain that unity? Perhaps through the hosting of the Olympics."

Germany's president Christian Wulff says he will award national team coach Joachim Loew the country's Federal Cross of Merit for his achievement in leading the side to third place in the World Cup in South Africa.

Wulff also said in a televised press conference on Sunday that the German players will be decorated with the Silver Laurel in honour of their performance.

Loew led his side to a 3-2 victory over Uruguay in the third-place playoff on Saturday.

France midfiedler Jeremy Toulalan says that any punishment handed out over the squad's decision to go on strike during the World Cup should be collective as the decision was approved by all the players.

The Lyon player admitted that he was "not proud" of the decision to boycott training because Nicolas Anelka was sent home by coach Raymond Domenech following a row at half time of the 2-0 group stage defeat to Mexico.

However, he added that he "accepts responsibility" for his actions, that all players were involved and "whoever says the opposite is a liar".

Updated throughout the day.



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see also
Saturday's World Cup round-up
10 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Friday's World Cup round-up
09 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Thursday's World Cup round-up
08 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Wednesday's World Cup round-up
07 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Tuesday's World Cup round-up
06 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Monday's World Cup round-up
05 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Sunday's World Cup round-up
04 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010
Saturday's World Cup round-up
03 Jul 10 |  World Cup 2010


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