Euro 2004: France beat England 2-1

Updated: 25 February 2007 09:04 IST

Zinedine Zidane scored twice in the second-half of injury time as France rallied to beat England 2-1 in their first Group B game of Euro 2004.

Euro 2004: France beat England 2-1

Lisbon:

Zinedine Zidane scored twice in the second-half of injury time as defending champion France rallied to beat England 2-1 in their first Group B game of Euro 2004. The Real Madrid star drove home a 23-meter free kick and then a penalty two minutes later to deny England victory before a 65,000 sellout at the Stadium of Light in Lisbon yesterday. Frank Lampard's 38th-minute header off a David Beckham free kick gave England a 1-0 lead in the first-high profile match of the championship. Lampard scored on a near-post header to the left of French keeper Fabien Barthez. It was the first goal given up by France in 1,078 minutesa€"12 games. Beckham earned the free kick after being fouled by Bixente Lizarazu. Opportunity missedEngland missed a chance to make it 2-0 after Wayne Rooneya€"capping a 40-meter (yard) run down the left sidea€"was pulled down in the box by Mikael Silvestre. But French keeper Barthez guessed correctly and dived right to stop Beckham's spot kick. England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson said the English deserved the victory. The victory puts France atop Group B after Croatia and Switzerland played a 0-0 draw in the day's first match. England is in last place. Winning free kickZidane sailed in the free kick in the first minute of injury time to jolt a stadium filled mostly with Englishman. In the third minute, striker Thierry Henry was tripped in the box as keeper David James came out to stop his run. Zidane calmly put the ball into the net as James dived to his left and the ball went into the other corner. There were few secrets between the two sides in their opening match in Group B. Seven of the French starters played last season in Premier League, and 10 of England's starters also played there. England kept good possession early although neither team managed a scoring chance in the first 10 minutes. The best opportunity came for England in the fifth minute when Paul Scholes slipped a ball through to Michael Owen in the box, but defender William Gallas cleverly kept Owen from shooting. (AP)



Topics : Football
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