France beat Brazil 1-0 to take last semi-final spot

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Saturday, July 1, 2006

In a quarter-final rematch of the 1998 Fifa World Cup final France beat Brazil 1-0 to progress to the semi-finals, Saturday.

Brazil had not lost a Fifa World Cup match since the 1998 game but Zinedine Zidane, the three times World Player of the Year who had authored Brazil's downfall in Paris, left the signature of his gifts in his trademark flair at the Commerzbank Arena. File:Commerzbank-Arena-Luftbild.jpg

Commerzbank Arena, Frankfurt.
(Image missing from Commons: image; log)

The experienced French defense of Liliam Thuram, Claude Makelele and Patrick Viera did their bit to confine the 2002 World Champions to a single shot on target in 90 minutes. The attacking pace and skill of newcomer Frank Ribery ripped Brazilian defence open and Zidane found him time and time again.

Thierry Henry scored the only goal of the game 12 minutes after half-time. Zidane flighted a free kick to the far post where Henry ran in and jumped to side-foot a volley past Dida.

Zidane's performance in the eyes of experienced observers reawakened memories of his best games for France. He orchestrated nearly everything France did well and always had time for graceful turns, effortless passes, mesmerizing footwork that evaded legs to keep the ball under control.

If 34 year old Zidane played like the game might have been his last match, Brazil's Ronaldo, Cafu and Roberto Carlos, also over 30, were unable to rise to the same heights on this occasion.

On 90 minutes Ronaldinho had a free kick opportunity 25 yards from goal but it was not to be the 2006 Fifa Player of the Year's night either; his shot fizzed over the bar.

The result meant Raymond Domenech's side would meet Portugal in the semi-final round of the World Cup in Munich on Wednesday, July 5.


Match 60

July 1, 2006
France 1–0 Brazil Commerzbank Arena
Henry 57'

Attendance: 48'000



Right wing Right Center Left Left wing
Fabien Barthez (GK)
Willy Sagnol 74' William Gallas Eric Abidal Liliam Thuram 88'
Claude Makelele
Frank Ribery Patrick Viera Flourant Malouda
Zinedine Zidane (C)
Thierry Henry


  • 77' Sidney Govou for Ribery
  • 81' Slyvain Wiltord for Malouda
  • 86' Louis Saha 87' for Henry

Coach: Raymond Domenech

denotes one goal scored.


Right wing Right Center Left Left wing
Dida (GK)
Roberto Carlos Juan 45' Lucio 75' Cafu (C) 25'
Gilberto Silva
Kaka Ze Roberto Juninho Pernambucano Ronaldinho
Ronaldo 47'+


  • 63' Adriano for Juninho
  • 76' Cicinho for Cafu
  • 79' Robinho for Kaka

Coach: Carlos Alberto Parreira

denotes one goal scored.


Referee: Luis Medina Cantalejo

Assistant referee: Victoriano Giraldez Carrasco

Assistant referee: Pedro Medina Hernandez

Fourth referee: Mark Shield

Fifth referee: Ben Wilson

Portugal taken to penalties; beat England and reach historic semi-final


This article is about the 2006 World Cup; for more World Cup news visit the World Cup portal.