Algeria World Cup 2010 team guide and Squad

Algeria, known as the Desert Foxes, are capable of playing fast, attacking football, but are also prone to collapsing spectacularly, as they did against rivals Egypt in this year's Africa Cup of Nations.

How Algeria Qualified in World Cup 2010
Algeria's path to the finals was perhaps the longest and hardest of all, but Saadane’s band negotiated it successfully. The Greens began with difficulty, losing two of the three of their first matches at in the first round against Senegal (0-1) and Gambia (0-1), but nonetheless made it to the second round. The unfancied Algerians were within minutes of qualifying, only for Egypt to score a goal that forced a play-off in Sudan. There Antar Yahia scored the only goal of this match, plunging a whole nation in an indescribable hysteria, and leaving much bad blood between Algerians and Egyptians.

Manager: Rabah Sadaane is a father figure in Algerian football who sticks by his players: ‘I’m the only person responsible and I know that I’ll be the only one responsible after the finals.’


MADJID BOUGHERRA Bougherra's trademark forays with the ball out of central defence have helped him stand out during his two seasons with Scottish champions Rangers. The current Algerian Player of the Year, he kept Algeria in this year's Africa Cup of Nations with a 90th-minute equaliser against the Ivory Coast in their quarter-final tie.

YAZID MANSOURI Algeria's captain is the most-capped player in the squad. A France-born dual national who had a spell on loan at Coventry in 2003, the defensive midfielder struggled for playing time in his fourth season with French top-flight club Lorient. He suffered a torn hamstring early in the campaign and only started nine games.

KARIM ZIANI Algeria's star player provides the team's artistry, usually drifting in from the left wing. Algeria's footballer of the year from 2004 to 2006, Ziani nonetheless struggled to make an impact at club level this season following a £6m move to 2009 German champions Wolfsburg. His only contribution to the back pages in Germany was a training ground bust-up with Wolfsburg's star striker Edin Dzeko in August.

What to expect:
Plenty of ambition and will look to attack sides on the break but lack enough talent to move out of the group.

World ranking: 30.

Best World Cup performance: Group stage (1982, 1986)

Algeria World Cup 2010 Fixtures:

Slovenia - 13 June, 12.30pm, Polokwane
England - 18 June, 7.30pm, Cape Town
USA - 23 June, 3pm, Pretoria

Algeria World Cup 2010 Squad

Goalkeepers: Faouzi Chaouchi (Entente Setif), Lounes Gaouaoui (ASO Chlef), Rais Ouheb Mbouli (Slavia Sofia),

Defenders: Habib Belaid (Boulogne-sur-Mer), Nader Belhadj (Portsmouth), Majid Bougherra (Rangers), Rafik Halliche (Nacional), Abdelkader Laifaoui (Entente Setif), Carl Medjani (Ajaccio), Djamel Mesbah (Lecce), Antar Yahia (VfL Bochum);

Midfielders: Djamel Abdoun (Nantes), Riad Boudebouz (Sochaux), Adlane Guedioura (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Fouad Kadir (Valenciennes), Medhi Lacen (Racing Santanader), Yazid Mansouri (Lorient), Hassan Yebda (Portsmouth), Karim Ziani (VfL Wolfsburg);

Forwards: Rafik Djebbour (AEK Athens), Abdelkader Ghezzal (Siena), Karim Matmour (Borussia Moenchengladbach), Rafik Saifi (Istres)

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