Germany says Argentina disrespectful to opponents, referees
Germany midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger accuses World Cup quarterfinal rival Argentina of showing no respect for opponents and referees...
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ERASMIA, South Africa — Germany midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger accuses World Cup quarterfinal rival Argentina of showing no respect for opponents and referees, and urges his teammates not to be provoked.
Germany eliminated Argentina on penalty kicks four years ago at the same stage and there were chaotic scenes after the shootout, with both sides exchanging punches and kicks in a fracas that included team officials from both benches.
"The shootout is still in our memory, but what really weighs heavily on our minds is what happened after that match," Schweinsteiger said Wednesday. "We have to remain calm and not get provoked, and I hope the referee will be very alert.
"You could see their behavior at halftime of the game against Mexico. When you look at their body language and gesticulations, the way they try to influence the referees, they have no respect. It's their mentality and character, and we'll have to adjust."
Mexico and Argentina players had to be separated as they headed for the tunnel at halftime of the teams' second-round game, with the Mexicans furious over Argentina's first goal that came when scorer Carlos Tevez clearly was offside.
Argentina won 3-1.
Schweinsteiger also accused Argentine fans of taking the places of others in the stadiums and refusing to move. It was not clear where he got his evidence from.
But the midfielder praised Argentina as a team, saying the squad coached by Diego Maradona was better in "every sector" than the team Germany beat four years ago.
Schweinsteiger singled out veteran Juan Sebastian Veron.
"He has played very strongly here, I have been impressed," Schweinsteiger said.
Mexico coach resigns
MEXICO CITY — Javier Aguirre has quit as Mexico coach, three days after the national team was knocked out of the World Cup in a 3-1 loss to Argentina.
It marked the fifth straight time that Mexico has been eliminated in the second round of the World Cup.
Aguirre said that he was "the person responsible" for the loss.
Mexico has only twice reached the quarterfinals of the World Cup — in 1970 and 1986, when it hosted the event.
Aguirre made the announcement at a packed news conference in Mexico City. The Mexico-born Aguirre was appointed 15 months ago for a second stint as Mexico coach. He also coached the team in the 2002 World Cup, but was replaced after Mexico was eliminated by the United States.
• Lawmakers taking part in a closed-door hearing about France's World Cup fiasco said coach Raymond Domenech refused to take any responsibility for his team's misbehavior and offered no real explanation for their debacle. Lawmakers said Domenech, who is retiring, tried to pin blame on the media during the parliamentary hearing.
• The president of Nigeria has suspended the national soccer team from international competition for two years after its poor showing at the World Cup.
The announcement by President Goodluck Jonathan's spokesman also follows corruption allegations which surrounded the team in the run-up to the tournament. Spokesman Ima Niboro said all funds directed toward the Nigeria Football Federation would be examined and "all those found wanting will be sanctioned."
Niboro gave no other specifics about the investigation, other than saying Jonathan's decision came after reading a report submitted by the presidential soccer task force.
Federation spokesman Ademola Olajire told The Associated Press that he had no information about the suspension.
"We have not been directed," Olajire said. "We have no letter" from the president.
The Nigerian Football Federation's executive committee had earlier offered an apology to the government and "all football loving Nigerians" for the early exit.
Nigeria got eliminated from the World Cup after the group stage, having earned just one point — in a 2-2 draw with South Korea in its last game.
• FIFA is investigating whether Australia's bid to host the 2022 World Cup has broken ethics rules by offering illegal gifts and inducements.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported in Wednesday's edition that the bid campaign offered pearl cufflinks to members of FIFA's executive committee and necklaces to their wives.
Australia's bid also offered payment for a Trinidad and Tobago under-20 team to travel to Cyprus, the newspaper reported.
• The England fan who entered the team's locker room after its draw against Algeria is a free man after paying a small fine. Pavlos Joseph paid a $100 admission of guilt fine on Wednesday in exchange a Cape Town magistrate dropping the charges against him.
• Tickets are available for all four World Cup quarterfinals matches. FIFA says that 500 tickets are unsold for the Netherlands-Brazil match in Port Elizabeth on Friday. About 1,200 premier class tickets are available to see Uruguay play Ghana at Soccer City in Johannesburg the same day.
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