CROATIA – SCOTLAND
Modric, Corluka and Lovren suspended
Scotland without 13 players: Brown, Forrest, Fox, Wallace, Caldwell, Bridcutt, Greer, D. Fletcher, S. Fletcher, Commons, Mulgrew, Adam, Miller
One definite absence for Argentina is Fernando Gago, who will be unable to resume his partnership with Javier Mascherano in the middle.
Lionel Messi’s presence, meanwhile, is still in doubt. The Barcelona star was included in the squad and reports from training suggest that he will be fit to take the captain’s armband against Colombia. With questions remaining over whether he is ready to play, however, coach Alejandro Sabella has refused to confirm his place in the first XI – Erik Lamela or Ezequiel Lavezzi are prime candidates to step in should he be unavailable.
Jose Pekerman is expected to make several changes from the team that was defeated last time round by Venezuela. In an attacking line-up, Cruz Azul striker Teo Gutierrez will enter for Macnelly Torres to partner Radamel Falcao up front, while Carlos Sanchez could also enter for Edwin Valencia in the middle.
Portugal – Russia
With Pepe suspended for the game at Estadio da Luz, Paulo Bento’s main concern is picking a replacement to partner Bruno Alves in the heart of the Portuguese defense, with Valencia’s Ricardo Costa expected to get the nod.
After an injury-plagued campaign which saw him miss Portugal’s last two Group F matches against Israel and Azerbaijan, winger Nani has re-joined the squad for the upcoming qualifier.
Captain Igor Denisov is expected to make his return to the Russian XI after sitting out the team’s last game against Brazil with illness, with Viktor Faizulin vying with Roman Shirokov for the other central midfield berth in Fabio Capello’s 4-2-3-1 formation.
Jamaica – USA
Manager Theodore Whitmore’s side boasts four MLS players, including captain and goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts, midfielder JeVaughn Watson and forwards Ryan Johnson and Darren Mattocks.
he USA, playing without the likes of first-team regulars Landon Donovan, Steve Cherundolo, Timmy Chandler and Carlos Bocanegra, begins a stretch of three World Cup qualifiers in 11 days. The team’s next two matches against Panama and Honduras will be played in Seattle and Salt Lake City, respectively. Forward Herculez Gomez (knee) is an injury doubt to play Friday. Fabian Johnson (hamstring) was subbed off at halftime against Germany as a precautionary measure but is expected to be ready.
Jamaica (4-1-4-1): Ricketts; Powell, Mariappa, Woodbine, Gordon; Austin, Hue, McCleary, Elliott, Watson; Johnson
USA (4-2-3-1): Howard; Evans, Gonzalez, Besler, Beasley; Bradley, Jones; Zusi,Dempsey, F. Johnson; Altidore.
Michal Bilek has no fresh injury concerns ahead of the qualifier and could field the same XI which comfortably saw off the challenge of Armenia with a 3-0 away win back in March.
Cesare Prandelli can welcome back Andrea Barzagli and Stephan El Shaarawy after the pair missed the 4-0 friendly victory over San Marino last week and both are expected to go straight into the starting line-up.
Albania – Norway
Norway with full squad, Albania without important defenders Cana, Curri, Lila, Vangjeli and midfielder Meha
Albania: Berisha, Dalku, Agolli, Mavraj, Osmani, Basha, Bulku, Llullaku, Rama, Gjasula, Cani (Salihi)
Norway: Jarstein, Høgli, Wæhler, Hangeland, Ruud, Braaten, Henriksen, Nordtveit, Jenssen, Elyounoussi, Søderlund
Costa Rica – Honduras
Costa Rica: Navas, Gamboa, G. González, Acosta, J. Diaz, Barrantes, Bolanos, A. Rodriguez, Campbell, B. Ruiz, V. Nunez/Saborio
Honduras: Valladares, A. Peralta, V. Bernardez, O. Chavez, J. Garcia, B. Garcia, Espinoza, Garrido, Palacios, Costly, Bengtson
Panama – Mexico
Panama with strong home record – didnt loose at home almost 8 years
Panama: Penedo, Chen, R. Torres, Baloy, L. Henríquez, G. Gómez, A. Henríquez, Godoy, Escobar, Tejada/G. Torres, B. Pérez
Mexico: Corona, Meza, Rodriguez, Reyes, Salcido, Zavala, Guardado, Torrado, Barrera, De Nigris/Dos Santos, J. Hernandez