Tuesday June 11th, 2002
Denmark vs France in Incheon
The hopes of France rested on the thigh of Zinedine Zidane as
France needed to beat Denmark by two goals to defend their crown in the knockout rounds.
France started confidently enough, with Zidane orchestrating a couple
of passes, while Denmark played with an extra defensive midfielder to try and restrict his
influence on the game.
Denmark's first half-chance came in the 11th minute but it was cleared
away before Fabien Barthez could be brought to the test.
France's first real chance came seven minutes later as Trezeguet raced
into the area to try his luck rather than square the ball to Sylvain Wiltord.
Dennis Rommedahl nipped around the back of the French defence to plant Töfting's chip
past Fabien Barthez and put the World Champions under real pressure - they now need to
score three and Zidane is nowhere near fit enough to go it alone.
From nothing, Zidane turned and almost scored with a curling lob in
the 38th minute; his intuition is still there even if his pace is not.
Zidane has been involved in a number of French moves that split the
Danish defence but Trezeguet and Wiltord have failed to finish like they do for their
France's only hope now is that Denmark wilt in the heat during the
Half-time: Denmark 1 - France 0
Just after the restart, Zidane is inches away from heading in a
In the 50th minute, a Zidane corner is headed onto the bar by Marcel
Desailly. France are looking dangerous but they need to make their chances count.
Poor Zidane - when made to chase for the ball, he never really had any
chance. Vincent Candela tried to run through the middle but Wiltord was caught offside
when the France defender released the ball.
Although Denmark could afford to slow their game down and conserve
energy, France always looked dangerous on the break.
Then the killer blow as Jon Dahl Tomasson ran into the right place in the French area to
knock the ball under Barthez.... and with it, France out of the tournament.
France hit the aluminium for the fifth time - as 2002 proved not to be
their year - to go out as the only reigning champions not to score a goal or register a
The last time a World Champion was knocked out in the first round -
Brazil, in 1966 - England (the host nation) won the cup.
Denmark 2 -
Other Group A Match:
Senegal vs Uruguay
Man of the Match:
Stig Töfting - Gave everything for Denmark in midfield, until his batteries ran out ten
minutes before time.
Christophe Dugarry (8 mins)
Christian Poulsen (27 mins)
Niclas Jensen (71 mins)
1 Thomas Sorensen; 6 Thomas Helveg, 3 Rene Henriksen, 12 Niclas Jensen, 4 Martin Laursen;
7 Thomas Gravesen, 17 Christian Poulsen (20 Kasper Bogelund - 76 mins), 2 Stig Töfting
(23 Brian Steen Nielsen - 79 mins); 10 Martin Jorgensen (8 Jesper Gronkjaer - 46 mins), 19
Dennis Rommedahl, 9 Jon Dahl Tomasson.
16 Fabien Barthez; 2 Vincent Candela, 8 Marcel Desailly, 3 Bixente Lizarazu, 15 Lilian
Thuram; 7 Claude Makelele, 4 Patrick Vieira (22 Johan Micoud - 71 mins), 10 Zinedine
Zidane; 21 Christophe Dugarry (9 Djibril Cisse - 54 mins), 20 David Trezeguet, 11 Sylvain
Wiltord (6 Youri Djorkaeff - 83 mins).
Referee: Vitor Melo Pereira
Denmark, France, Senegal, Uruguay.
Paraguay, Slovenia, Spain,
Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Turkey.
South Korea, United States.
Korea First Round Matches.
Cameroon, Germany, Republic of Ireland,
Argentina, England, Nigeria, Sweden.
Croatia, Ecuador, Italy, Mexico.
Belgium, Japan, Russia, Tunisia.
Japan First Round Matches.
2002 World Cup Finals - Knockout Stage.
Group Tables - Leading Goalscorers.
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