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Is Brazil still No. 1 in the FIFA rankings? Probably. Do you guys agree with that, especially now that France is champion of the world and champion of Europe?

In winning the two biggest trophies in the sport, France beat arguably the two teams with the best football histories, Brazil and Italy, a South American powerhouse and a European powerhouse.

Even after World Cup 98 I thought France was not that good, because the real Brazil didn't show up for the final. But that is just an excuse; it's not France's fault that Brazil disappeared.

Right now, I would have to say that France clearly is the top team in the world, with a solid goalkeeper, a fantastic defense, a magical Zidane midfield and some exciting, young attackers. Also, they have all been playing together for a few years. Brazil, on the other hand, is a collection of superstars who don't seem to like playing together right now.

And after watching Brazil's last few performances, I would have to say that Holland also might be better than Brazil. By the World Cup 2002, of course, that will all be different, and Brazil will once again be kings. But right now, Brazil looks like No. 2 or No. 3 to me.

(FIFA rankings at http://www.fifa.com from June have Holland No. 21, if you can believe that! Brazil was No. 1, France No. 2, Italy No. 14 ... Czech Republic No. 3. What a crock!)
 

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http://www.sportserver.com

EURO 2000: France wonders what next


ROTTERDAM (July 3, 2000 10:54 a.m. EDT http://www.sportserver.com) - France entered the exclusive circle of great soccer nations, leaving its heroes wondering what they could still achieve.

"There's nothing higher than this," Christophe Dugarry said after a dramatic 2-1 victory over Italy in Sunday's Euro 2000 final. "Maybe we should all stop now."

The Girondins Bordeaux striker and his teammates survived a thrilling scenario to write history, becoming the first reigning world champions to then capture the European title.

**************Their triumph, coming two years after their 3-0 defeat of Brazil in the World Cup final and four years after a place in the semifinals of Euro '96, made them the most successful team over a four-year period since the great West Germay side of the 1970s.******************

Franz Beckenbauer and his men won the European crown in 1972 and the World Cup two years later before reaching the final of the 1976 European championship.

For years France envied the Germans their ability to always have the edge when it mattered but the way they fought back from one goal down, equalising in stoppage time before sealing Italy's fate with a golden goal suggested they now have it too.

"Frankly, I had given up hope," said defender Frank Leboeuf, who watched the match from the bench. "Time was flying and we could not creat a single chance. Then the board came up saying there were four minutes left and eventually, Sylvain Wiltord scored.

"After that I knew nothing could happen to us anymore. David Trezeguet's goal didn't surprise me. I could feel it coming."

GOLDEN GOAL

Leboeuf grew up watching the Germans do exactly what France did at Euro 2000, where they also needed a golden goal to overcome Portugal 2-1 in the semifinals after seeing Spain miss a penalty and a great chance in the closing stages of the quarter-finals.

"The Germans made their luck," said Leboeuf, aware that France went out to Germany in the semifinals of the 1982 and 1986 World Cups.

"Now we, too, have that winning mentality."

France's World Cup victory was not an accident favoured by home advantage but marked the start of the reign of a remarkable generation of players who still have plenty to look forward too.

"Maybe we are better now as we won away and beat great teams," quicksilver forward Thierry Henry, who received the man-of-the-match award, said after France won their first final of a major tournament on foreign soil.

The exceptional motivation of France's new breed of players, most of them immigrants' sons who grew up on the outskirts of Paris dreaming of a shiny future, was instrumental in the team's success.

Coach Roger Lemerre and his predecessor Aime Jacquet, who stepped dowm after the World Cup campaign, should also be given credit for shaping a team as clever tactically and tight defensively as any Italian side, only spiced by a touch of French flair.

"Our victory marks the triumph of a certain conception of the game," said Youri Djorkaeff -- one of the artists who make France so unpredictable.

UNASHAMED

"Had Italy won, it would have taken football 10 years back," he added, blasting the Italians for unashamedly concentrating on defending.

"We always try to race forward and we play to have fun. Attacking football was the winner."

Only Laurent Blanc has definitely followed Dugarry's advice about giving up now, ending his prolific international career with a faultless performance on Sunday.

Fellow central defender Marcel Desailly and captain Didier Deschamps both hinted their days in France colors might soon be over but all the other members of a squad blessed with talent will be around for some time.

Zinedine Zidane, who is 28 and still has plenty to offer, will remain their inspiration for the years to come while the careers of the likes of Henry, Trezeguet, Wiltord and midfielder Patrick Vieira are only just starting,

"I believe this group has the capacity to carry on until the 2002 World Cup," said coach Lemerre, whose gamble of sending on youngsters Wiltord and Trezeguet paid off beautifully, highlighting France's in-depth strength.

Dugarry has no reason to stop just yet.
 

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Without any shadow of ANY doubt, WE are the best of the best!The champions of the universe!And it ain't over baby!It's just starting...:cool:

"France's World Cup victory was not an accident favoured by home advantage but marked the start of the reign of a remarkable generation of players who still have plenty to look forward too." :coo:

That is exactly a summary of the current situation of the French football.

With the players we currently have and those just waiting their turn with great hunger and motivation, we may well win in the next decade more than powerhouses such as Italy, Germany, Argentina or the "mighty Brasil" have won in their entire History!

This is the new French Revolution!:D:

La Marseillaise, France's national anthem will be the most heard and played anthem of the world in the future...

"Allons enfants de la Patrie,
Le jour de gloire est arrivé..."

MERCI LES MECS! VOUS ETES FABULEUX!
LE MONDE EST A NOUS!

THE WORLD IS OURS...ONCE AGAIN!
THE WORLD WILL BE...BLEU BLANC ROUGE...ONCE AGAIN...AND AGAIN!

SIMPLY THE BEST OF THE UNIVERSE!

Ze, or Falcao (Ciao amigao!, come stai?) when will be the next Intercontinental Cup, the game between the European and South American champions?
I hope its gonna be us against Brasil...and where would that be?In Brasil or in France or would that be in a neutral
place?Anyways, CU there Braseileros...and the very best of luck to you...
P.S.S:is this true that last week, Brasil had all the trouble in the world just to manage to get a draw with Uruguay????Hum, Brasil, what is going on???
 

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Oi, San-siro, tudo bem? well, congratulations (parabens) to you for france. i agree that right now france is number 1 in the world, but don't go crazy and say you will win more in the next decade than brazil has in history. that's impossible! you are right to be excited about the future of france, but be careful because zidane already is 28 years old and blanc is finished. and remember that in 1999 brazil and france were supposed to play in a tournament in saudi arabia, BUT FRANCE DECIDED AT THE LAST MINUTE NOT TO GO!!! if brazil had beaten france then, perhaps the team would not have the same confidence it has today and the next two years would have been very different.

the next time brazil and france play, it will be a war! it will be like if brazil met argentina in the world cup!

cnnsi.com has a poll: who is the best team? 1700 people voted. France is number 1, with 39 percent. brazil 30 percent, italy and holland 11 and 12 percent, argentina 8 percent.

yes, it is true brasil had a lot of trouble with uruguay. but uruguay ALWAYS plays very hard against brasil. in the game, uruguay took one shot in the whole game and scored, then played with 11 defenders! in the first half brazil was terrible. in the second half brazil attacked for the full 45 minutes. the 1-1 was the right result for both teams, even though the referee did not see when a uruguay player used his hand to stop a goal.
 

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OK, I may be walking on thin ice asking this kind of question in this forum, but I would really like to know how all you guys see Argentina. Here in Greece it's the hottest conversation topic (apart from the Euro and the National League). You'll think, ah, Greece, what do they konw, well the truth is that we get to see the games for the WC preliminaries, important friendlies, the Copa America etc on cable TV. We DON'T get to see are the League games of Brazil or Argentina but on the National sides there's a formed opinion.

Argentina is considered the hottest favorite for the WC 2002 around here. What do you think?

P.S. Try to be as un-biased as possible PLEASE!!! :)
 

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Argentina might be favorites in Greece because if you look in the newspaper you see that Arg has won all four of its qualifying games and is on top of the group. But Arg is not playing that well to be considered favorites ahead of Brazil, France, Holland or even Italy.

In one of the qualifying games, Arg struggled to beat Bolivia (I think). And since WC98, Arg has not played so well -- knocked out of the Copa America by Brazil, beaten 4-2 by Brazil in a friendly, Under-23 struggled in Olympic qualifying, etc. The only good results I remember are 2-0 over Brazil in a friendly in Argentina and the other three WC2002 qualifiers.
 

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Falcao,we dont read the newspapers...as hala already explained that we see most qualifying games.

Argentina is a quality team.BUT if they can get their act together is different story...and thery look move convincing than Brazil Falcao...

As I said,France are my favorites.
 

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thanks amo for the support. argentina has had no sturggles. that one game against bolivia was a denfensive against a offensive team. bolivia played mostly defence. brazil had to get a penalty to beat uraguay's defence, so i dont call it a struggle. it happens and teams like brazil and argentina must find a way to score one goal. dont forget that argentina beat spain in a friendly also. i would consider argentina a top 3 favorites. they have the skills and the men to do it. these qualifying games make them better as time goes on. i feel like by the wc2002 time, argentina will be a great bunch and will be the team to beat. brazil seems to be struggling, but i wont consider them out of the wc2002 race for a second! i am hoping to see argentina vs. brazil classic in the wc2002 final. then we can beat brazil and become CHAMPIONS. :)

MAN, I CAN'T TAKE SEEING FRANCE CELEBRATING ANOTHER TROPHY.
i think only brazil and argentina are the teams that will be able to beat them in wc2002.
 

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Thanks argentina for the comments!


Aaahhhhh.... I can't resist saying that we have a lot of people worrying.... :)
 

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France won the last trophies, today argentina is playing the best football, and Brazil has the best players and the best potential.
just on thing: when we have to win..you guys know who will be their!:)
And I don't think it is a struggle to draw agaisnt Uruguay, they are our biggest headaches..and over the years they are the country that have most ebaten us at home, and caused us the bigest problem + they are a country with a lot of tradition..only 2 european countries have won more world cups than them!!
Winning or losing always BRASIL....after all it is my country!:)
 
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