World Cup: Slovakia
(Bela Szandelszky / AP)
Slovakia's players pose before a qualifying match at home against Slovenia on Oct. 10, 2009.
Men's ranking: 33
Overall World Cup record: 0-0-0
Coach: Vladimir Weiss
Best performance: Debut
Overview: South Africa 2010 is Slovakia's first appearance in a major international tournament since the breakup of the former Czechoslovakia in the early 1990s. Weiss started on the Czechoslovakia team that thrashed the U.S., 5-1, at the 1990 World Cup in Italy, and his 20-year-old son, also named Vladimir, is a key player on the squad as an attack-minded winger. Liverpool's Martin Skrtel anchors the defense, and VfL Bochum striker Stanislav Sestak is the go-to guy for goals. -- Grahame L. Jones