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Daily Links: 49 Days to World Cup

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Less than 50 days to go and three stadiums are still unfinished, not to worry though according to FIFA's Sepp Blatter. Plus: Andy Carroll, Lionel Messi, Fabio Capello, and more, in the latest installment of TLR's Daily World Cup Countdown.

Christopher Lee

Downing backs Carroll for England spot

West Ham winger Stewart Downing has voiced his support of team-mate Andy Carroll to earn a place in the England squad. Carroll last played for England back in October 2012 and has been dealing with injuries in the first half of the season.

Capello to call it a day after World Cup 2018

Russia's national team manager, Fabio Capello has said that he will retire after the conclusion of the 2018 World Cup which Russia will host. The former England boss will be 71 years of age in 2018.

Janujaz Belgium spot not guaranteed

Despite committing his allegiance with the Belgium national team, Adnan Janujaz will have to earn his spot on the Belgium national team for the World Cup, according to his agent.

Silva's form affected by World Cup

PSG manager Laurent Blanc believes that skipper Thiago Silva's struggles is due to the fear of missing out on the World Cup. Earlier this season Silva sustained a thigh injury, and most recently a facial injury which requires him to wore a protective mask.

Team atmosphere key to unlocking Messi's top performance

That was the message from Argentina national team manager, Alejandro Sabella. Lionel Messi has had to face some criticism and also injuries, as he prepared to lead his country for a third World Cup triumph.

Demichelis realistic over Argentina call-up

Manchester City's defender, Martin Demichelis is "95% sure" that he will be going on a holiday instead of going to the World Cup. The 33-year old has not played for his country since 2011.

Tabarez downplays Uruguay's chance

Oscar Tabarez, who managed to led the team to a semifinal berth in the 2010 World Cup and a Copa America trophy a year later has downplayed his side's chance of reaching the World Cup final in Brazil.

Stadium Updates

FIFA's secretary general, Jerome Valcke toured several arenas that is yet to be completed with the World Cup less than 50 days away. His main message is "there is no time to waste".

Arena Pantanal in Cuiaba had to delay its inauguration with some 5.000 seats not yet installed.

Arena da Baixada in Curitiba still has "a lot of work to do both inside and outside the stadium".

Blatter: "Be Optimistic"

But despite the delay so close to the kick-off to the tournament, FIFA's President said that during his experience overseeing the World Cup, there has never been one where "everything is ready, completely ready before the kick-off". Heh, FIFA ladies and gentlemen.

Riots in Copacabana

Riot broke out in the famous beach area of Copacabana in Rio de Janeiro after protesters clashed with the police, due to the allegation that police mistook a man as a a drug dealer and killed him.