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Second Place Winner, December 2011 Photo Contest
94,487 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Associated Press Writer
May 31, 2002

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) --

It's not easy filling in for the best player in the world. Youri Djorkaeff didn't come close to succeeding.

Starting for France on Friday instead of Zinedine Zidane, Djorkaeff did little to make up for the absence of the injured star.

The veteran French midfielder repeatedly lost possession with timid passes and wobbly ball control, and before long paved the way for the game's only goal as Senegal upset France 1-0.

Djorkaeff, 34, was intercepted in midfield by defender Omar Daf, who passed to El Hadji Diouf down the left side. Diouf fed a cross that Papa Bouba Diop slipped home on a rebound in the 30th minute.

``They had one counterattack and they scored,'' French coach Roger Lemerre said. ``It's hard on us, but it's up to us to deal better with that type of situation.''

Djorkaeff has scored 28 goals for France, a record for an active French player, but at Seoul's World Cup Stadium he threatened only once, with a 38th-minute free kick that swerved around a defender. Goalkeeper Tony Sylva stopped it on the line.

His other attempts were easily deflected by the Senegalese defense or flew high over the crossbar.

Lemerre took out Djorkaeff in the 60th minute, replacing him with fellow veteran Christophe Dugarry, who made almost no impact.

Djorkaeff plays for Bolton, a weak English team, and until recently was uncertain of even being picked for France's squad. He filled in for Zidane after the former world player of the year tore a thigh muscle last Sunday.

Djorkaeff wasn't the only weak link in the French lineup.

Defender Frank Leboeuf was comically outrun by Diouf as he stormed down the left side to feed Diop the winning pass. It was perhaps a just reward for Leboeuf, who brought down Diouf repeatedly, often in midfield.

The French fullback was beaten a second time by Khalilou Fadiga in the 65th minute, and was lucky the Senegal midfielder's shot struck the crossbar.

Midfielder Emmanuel Petit shared the blame for Senegal's goal. He failed to clear Diouf's cross and then hit the ball against goalkeeper Fabien Barthez, giving Diop the chance to kick it into the net with his left foot.

Petit also earned a yellow card for bringing down Diouf with a sliding tackle in first-half injury time. With Zidane sidelined by injury, the foul opened the possibility of a hole in the French midfield if Petit is cautioned for a second time against Uruguay.

But the midfield and defensive errors wouldn't have mattered so much if strikers Thierry Henry and David Trezeguet hadn't wasted a string of scoring chances. Trezeguet received a deep pass from Barthez in the 20th minute, but was denied by goalie Tony Sylva. He hit the ball against the Senegal left post three minutes later.

Henry sent two attempts against the crossbar in the second half, and was thwarted by Sylva in the 90th minute.

Fellow forward Sylvain Wiltord was never a serious threat to the Senegalese goal and his 81st-minute replacement, Djibril Cisse, was barely noticeable.

``When a team fails to score in a match like this one it becomes very vulnerable,'' Lemerre said. ``We have dominated for the most of the game, but apparently it was not enough.''

Veteran defenders Marcel Desailly and Bixente Lizarazu limited damage on their side by repeatedly disarming Diouf. Lilian Thuram appeared overstretched, attempting with Patrick Vieira to make up for the lack of action in midfield.

Need I add more ??? .. Not my favourite French player..I seldom saw him do good things while at Inter, never mind at the WC Level !!!

12,328 Posts
colocolo said:
I seldom saw him do good things while at Inter
Since you seemed to have missed my post towards you at another forum here not such a long time ago, I will quote it for you again:

Jimmy said:
Colocolo, I wonder if you even saw Djorkaeff with Inter? ;) Now, when he had his prime with Inter he was the King in France too. The number one playmaker. :) Until Zidane took over that role.

Djorkaeff was with Inter the brilliant playmaker that was behind most of the goals. He either scored them or assisted them. It will take a long time before Inter can produce such a talented player that can make such an effort for a team. He also refused to leave Inter for another Serie A team and has for many years now rejected a potential move to another Serie A team. That shows some loyalty.

He scored 14 goals in his first season with Inter. Then scored 9 goals the second season and finished it off by scoring 13 goals in his last season, before moving because Lippi practically forced him out of the team.
He scored that many goals by playing as a playmaker or a support striker.
I would like to know how many assists he made too, but I couldn´t find those statistics. :(

You may not like what he did for Inter, but the Inter fans sure as hell does. :)
Now onto the current stage, since only someone that haven´t watched Inter and Djorkaeff during the 90´s can say things like you have done...

Djorkaeff is now 34 years old. He isn´t as fast as he once used to be. His position is as a playmaker and that requiers some stamina and full focuse all the time. Not many 34 years old can carry on like they have once been doing. Batistuta has lost his scoring touch. Maldini isn´t as good offensively as he once used to be. It´s just normal that Djorkaeff isn´t such a great playmaker as he once used to be.
Yes, he was performing quite bad today and can´t provide the skills that Zidane can. But again, he is 34 years old!!! No one should ever expect him to be able to replace Zidane in the same way. But atleast he made himself avaliable for passes all the time. He moved around a lot and made himself open. That I give him credit for. Then that he isn´t as fast with his passes and that he can make sloppy passes should be excusable considering his age and lack of playing time this season. He have had a tough year with Lautern and wasn´t with Bolton for such a long time before the season was over.

I would never even post here if you hadn´t involved Inter in the picture. I bought my first Inter jersey when I was like 17 years old and printed the name Djorkaeff at the back of it. Sure, he had to have some impact on the fans of Inter then and can´t possibly be the player you make him out to be. I as a teenager could even acknowledge his skills. Not many can argue against his importance with Inter. I really doubt you have seen his goal against Roma, his UEFA Cup campaign and every other magic things he pulled off with Inter. At that time he was a magician. He isn´t anymore, and people wouldn´t react this strongly if he was just a nobody that hasn´t achieved anything in his career personally. He is supposed to be a superstar and makes a bad match, hence the reactions.

I guess you didn´t watch the Euro 96 either...


Second Place Winner, December 2011 Photo Contest
94,487 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
First of all I didnt write the article So there are other souls that see what I see...
And after all your mumble jumble...The guy NEVER turned me on !!!!
What can I tell you ???? You have your views..I have mine and life goes on !!!!


12,328 Posts
I didn´t quote the article either. I quoted your own comment and my reply at another topic. That was all I quoted. Not anything in the article, because I simply ignored reading the article itself too. :) And as far as I can see, the article didn´t say anything about Inter, which was the part I quoted you...DUH!!!!

Call it mumble jumble all you want. It´s a fantastic argument against me, I must say. ;)
I thought XT was about debating? :confused: No? Off topic? Maybe? :confused:

We all here have our views and opinions. But what would a discussion forum be without difference of opinions and debating and expand your knowledge? Absolutely nothing!

So please, argue against me with facts. :)

46,068 Posts
HEY JIMMY! How's it going, man?! :) Back for the summer. I'll be here for a little over 3 months!

Anyway, I've seen that article before. Very convincing, isn't it? Especially with extremely eloquent adjectives such as 'wobbly'. Using words such as this, Mr McDonough shows us exactly how competent he is. 'Wobbly'. Ha.

And while we're discussing his competence, he mentions that Bolton is a weak team, with an obvious implication that Djorkaeff is a weak player. Yes, Bolton is a 'weak' team when compared with those at the top of the table. This is fairly evident from any league table. But Djorkaeff a weak player? It appears that Mr McDonough's research into the subject matter of the article is far from sufficient and/or he has in fact made an extremely negligent misrepresentation.

Here's a run down on Djorkaeff, which still does not do him enough justice.

World Cup Winner with France 1998

European Championships Winner with France 2000

European Cup Winners Cup Winner 1995/96 with Paris St Germain

UEFA Cup Winner 1997/98 with Inter Milan

French Cup Winner 1991/92 with Monaco

Leading scorer in the French league (20) in the 1993-94 season


If you knew anything about PSG at the time they won the CWC in 1996, you'd be well aware that Djorkaeff was their greatest star. And until Ronaldo joined Inter, Djorkaeff was easily the best player in the squad. He is a free-kick expert and a scorer of spectacular goals. When he scored the famous bicycle kick against Roma in 1997, the goal was described as being the goal of the decade. 28 goals scored for the country. That's the greatest number scored by any current French player. And he is the 3rd most prolific scorer EVER for France, behind players such as Platini and Fontaine.

He is an unheralded hero. In WC98, he might have only scored one goal (and from the penalty spot), but he also happened to force an own goal against South Africa, set up Lizarazu for his goal with a backheel against Saudi Arabia, set up Thuram for a VITAL goal against Croatia, and took one of the corners that Zizou scored from in the Final.

Not enough? In Euro 2000, he scored the winner against the Czech Rep, that ultimately took France through the group stages. And he of course scored the winner against Spain that took France into the semi-finals. In addition, he was the leading scorer in the Euro 2000 qualifiers.

So Mr McDonough and others may describe Youri as they wish. However, it is evident that he is a great player. Although he isn't as famous as players such as Ronaldo and Figo at the moment, he is an integral part of the French team. And most of all, he is a winner.

12,328 Posts
Firdaus!!!! :star:

Nice seeing you back again and what an AMAZING post! :eek::star:

The irony is that I was thinking of you when I saw this crap topic and the crap comments, and was hoping you could see it as well and make a post. :D:dazed:

Great to see you man. :happy:
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