No doubt about it - with an in-form Rui Costa we become an extremely hard team to beat with the ball flying to any given side. We're too quick on the wings for defenses to rely in zones - they won't be able torecover and close the spaces - that means Pauleta will get his chance to prove his worth.
However, a passive Rui Costa means predictable passes to Figo where then fortunes ride on his sole genius. And we won't be able to win consistently in that manner.
Rui Costa is the key....portugal played well against Brasil, but if rui costa was there at 100% he would have changed the perspective of the game....suddenly Figo is given more room as now the opposition has to worry about Rui's wizardry...if we can have a healthy squad...that being rui, figo, sergio, pauleta etc etc all healthy and game fit, we have a capable team...going down the wings with Sergio and Figo, through the middle with Rui and Pinto...but again a 100% rui will bring us to the next level...he makes the difference...
anyone hear anything about his health and fitness?
Yea I'll go with that. But I said it before and I'll say it again, the key to winning a World Cup is having a team of 11 players working together. Confidence and the faith each player has for their teammates will determine who will win the World Cup. That does fit in with Rui Costa and Luis Figo being a key factor. Without these two starts, Portugal will surely go into the World Cup with possibly no confidence or little of winning it all. Being without them will also make the other players get a sense that the only chance they had was with them resulting in a lack of faith in each other. Put it like this, for Portugal to win the World Cup they will have to have their full starting roster,confidence, and faith in each other.