Shakira’s ‘Waka Waka (This Time For Africa)’ Video: The Key Scene

Anticipation continues to build for the 2012 FIFA World Cup, the premiere international soccer tournament that occurs only every four years. It’s set to kick off this Friday, June 11, with the first batch of matches rolling out live from various sites in and around Johannesburg, South Africa. (For those of you interesting, the United States play their first match on Saturday, June 12 against England in a showdown of Revolutionary War proportions.) Though there is no doubt the soccer will be excellent (this year’s rosters are some of the deepest and most talented in the history of the tournament), it’ll also be thrilling to hear the music coming out of the month-long tournament. Several artists have created official World Cup songs, including R. Kelly and K’Naan, but Shakira‘s latest tune “Waka Waka (This Time For Africa)” is perhaps the best of them all.

She just premiered the video for “Waka Waka” over at Vevo, and it’s a delightfully colorful affair. Joined by Africa fusion band Freshlyground and a bevy of dancers, Shakira rolls through the funky, inspirational tune with her usual blend of jittery energy and engaging charm. It also doesn’t hurt that she’s an excellent dancer, as are the performers (many of them children) who flank her throughout the clip.

The clip is augmented by footage from soccer matches and worldwide World Cup-related celebrations in a number of foreign cities. Though Shakira’s performance is excellent, she can’t hold a candle to the intensity of World Cup-caliber soccer players, which means that the key scene from “Waka Waka (This Time For Africa)” is a killer slide tackle.

Shakira will take center stage this Thursday, June 10 when she performs the song at the opening ceremony of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Who will you be rooting for in the World Cup? Let us know in the comments!