Ladies and gentlemen turn away from your wallcharts and Esso medal collections for a moment if you would, and lend me your ears. In a week and a bit, one of the most eagerly awaited sporting events on the planet will begin I am of course referring to the MacRumors Fantasy World Cup 2010. Many of us have tried our hands with varying levels of success at the MacRumors Fantasy League over the past few seasons, but the time has arrived to see if our managerially-inclined MacRumormongers can cut it at international level and lift the tournament's glittering trophy, without a doubt the most coveted piece of silverware in world football. The game we'll be playing will be the ESPN version, a decision influenced by a couple of factors I'll mention shortly. Any questions? Yes! How do I sign up? Simply visit the ESPN site the game can be found here, and you can cast your eyes over the rules here. Once you're registered, drop me a PM and I'll send you back the code you need to join the MacRumours competition if you could tell me your team name in the PM that would be useful too! I'm planning on posting a few updates as the competition progresses, and by posting usernames rather than real names we can protect folk's privacy a bit. Additionally, those of you who played the Premier League game will recall that I made up some shirt graphics to go with these updates, this is something I'll be looking to do again so if in your PM you could mention your preferred shirt colours that would be great unlike the Premier League game this World Cup version doesn't allow you to nominate team colours in the game. Why PM? Why not just post the code here? I'm wanting to keep it a private league for actual MacRumors members and the odd 'guest' as far as possible, not those folk who trawl forums looking for league codes to join. Why not go with the Telegraph/Sky Sports/McDonalds/whatever game? That one looks interesting... I've taken a look at a few different games over the past week or two, but unfortunately some very promising looking ones were let down by the fact that they either required folk to pay a fee to register, or would only allow players from certain countries. The ESPN game is free and open to all so it ticks those important boxes the similarities to the Premier League game should also help us get our heads around the rules easily. For example, you nominate a captain for double points and the scoring system is rather similar too. Yuk yuk! Soccer's for girls and not as good as the far more manly sport I prefer! lol! Please do try and grow up. How many players can I pick? You need to pick a squad of 15 players with a combined value of no more than $100m. At this stage you can pick up to three players from each nation, and your selection must have at least... 1 Goalkeeper 4 Defenders 4 Midfielders 2 Forwards ...plus four additional squad members of any position you desire. There are a number of formations available so you can tailor a team to suit your tastes. If I pick a team now, what happens if I change my mind and want a different player or two before the tournament starts? At this point, you're free to pick your team and change players as many times as you like without penalty before the June 11th deadline, so don't fret about not being able to change your side to take advantage of injuries, players not being selected for their national squads, or Dutch players falling out with their manager and being sent home in disgrace. And what about transfers once the tournament kicks off? The game is divided up into a number of rounds, each has a number of transfers you can use up and a differing number of players you can pick per nation (depending on how many nations are left in at that particular stage, of course). Once again, check out the rules for more information. So prepare your squads, ready your complaints about the matchball, and good luck!