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Daily Links: 16 Days to World Cup

We bring you the latest news from the World Cup as squads are shaping up, tactics are tested, and injuries being treated, all here in our Daily World Cup Countdown.

Brett Hemmings
Friendlies round-up

Several sides are in action as they prepare for the World Cup with a series of warm-up fixtures, here's the latest result:

Belgium 5 - Luxembourg 1

Romelu Lukaku scored a hat-trick as Belgium puts five past their neighbor.

Australia 1 - South Africa 1

In their final friendly in front of the home crowd, Tim Cahill scored the equalizer to save Aussie's blushes.

Russia 1 - Slovakia 0

Alexander Kerzhakov's goal in the 82nd minute gives Russia a winning start in their World Cup preparation.

Montenegro 0 - Iran 0

A second straight goalless draw for Iran as they fail to breach Montenegro's defense.

Macedonia 0 - Cameroon 2

Cameroon ease to a 2-0 win but striker Pierre Webo injured his shoulder, while Samuel Eto'o was rested due to knee issues.

Costa a 'doubt' for World Cup

Diego Costa who limped off in last Saturday's Champions League final could be a 'doubt' for the World Cup due to hamstring injury. Test revealed that there is a micro-tear in his right leg.

Deschamps not worried about Benzema's injury

Another striker who suffered an injury in the Champions League final, Karim Benzemashould be fit and ready to go according to Didier Deschamps despite straining his left adductor muscle.

Injuries and dilemma for Joachim Low

The German head coach spoke of his confidence that Bayern Munich's injured trio of Manuel Neuer, Phillip Lahm, and Bastian Schweinsteiger should all be fit for the tournament. He also added that he's not sure yet which players to cut as he's been impressed by all of them.

Dortmund duo ready for World Cup

With Neuer's injury concern, Borussia Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller is ready to assume the number one spot in case of Neuer's absence. Teammate Kevin Grosskreutz should also travel to Brazil despite being recently disciplined for his antics following Dortmund's defeat in DFB-Pokal final.

Kranjcar to miss World Cup

Despite helping his side achieve promotion, QPR's midfielder Niko Kranjcar has been ruled out of the World Cup due to hamstring injury. The on-loan Croatian was forced off the pitch after 33 minutes last Saturday.

New two-year deal for Prandelli

Italy's head coach Cesare Prandelli has put pen to paper on a new two-year contract which will keep him in charge of Azzurri's until the conclusion of Euro 2016. He also will reveal his final squad after the friendly against Ireland this weekend.

Three cut by Postecoglou

After Australia's friendly against South Africa, head coach Ange Postecoglou made three cuts to his squad leaving behind Curtis Good, Josh Brilliante, and Adam Sarota. Australia will now trace to Brazil with 27-man in their squad.

Protesters surrounds Brazil's coach

In the latest of several protest prior to the World Cup, protesters surrounds Brazil's coach carrying the squad to a training camp in Teresopolis, as they voiced their displeasure at the amount of money spent for the tournament.