WORLD CUP: Offside

Kuranyi stunned

GELSENKIRCHEN: Brazilian-born striker Kevin Kuranyi could not hide his disappointment at being left out of the Germany squad for next month’s finals saying he would be having a lot of sleepless nights as a result of the snub. “My whole world collapsed. I just kept asking myself the question: Why me?” he said. Coach Jurgen Klinsmann made Kuranyi his first choice forward at last year’s Confederations Cup but he paid the price for a dreadful season with Schalke 04.

Thailand warns bookies

BANGKOK: Bangkok police put the city’s bookies on notice on Tuesday, announcing they have set up some 100 special units to crack down on football gambling during the World Cup in Germany. Thais are notoriously avid gamblers who bet on everything from kickboxing to cock fighting, but football betting is illegal despite its enormous popularity. “These special units will boost the existing police work to effectively crack down on football gambling by focusing on bookies,” the city’s police chief Viroj Chantharangsi said.

Togo first to arrive

STUTTGART: Togo’s national team arrived in Germany on Monday — the first of the 32 finalists to make the trip for the World Cup. The players and coach Otto Pfister touched down in southwestern Germany and will continue further south to Wangen, where their training camp will be based ahead of the June 9-July 9 event. Togo plays its opening World Cup match against 2002 semi-finalist South Korea on June 13, then faces Switzerland and France in Group G.