- Title: BELGIUM: REACTIONS TO FRANCE'S EURO 2000 SEMI-FINAL WIN OVER PORTUGAL.
- Date: 28th June 2000
- Summary: BRUSSELS, BELGIUM (JUNE 28, 2000) 1. V.I.P'S LEAVING THE KING BAUDOUIN STADIUM, BRUSSELS 2. (SOUNDBITE) (FRENCH) FRENCH POP STAR PATRICK BRUEL SAYING: "Zidane is the best player in the world at the moment. He's in the magic four of Cruyf, Platini, Pele and Zidane." 3. V.I.P'S LEAVING THE STADIUM 4. JACQUES CHIRAC, PRESIDENT OF FRANCE LEAVING THE STADIUM IN BRUSSELS 5. JACQUES CHIRAC LEAVING THE MATCH IN AN OFFICIAL CAR - HAND WAVING OUT OF THE WINDOW 6. DISAPPOINTED PORTUGUESE SUPPORTERS LEAVING THE STADIUM 7. MOUNTED POLICE WATCHING OVER THE PORTUGUESE FANS LEAVING THE STADIUM 8. (SOUNDBITE) (FRENCH) UNIDENTIFIED PORTUGUESE FAN SAYING: "It's sad. I cried. Because of the penalty I cried. Lots of little Portuguese children are crying their eyes out. Its a shame." 9. FRENCH FANS CELEBRATING THEIR WIN IN THE HISTORIC CENTRE OF BRUSSELS 10. MID SHOT OF FRENCH FANS CHANTING ON THE STEPS OF THE BRUSSELS BOURSE (OLD STOCK EXCHANGE BUILDING) 11. FANS ON TOP OF A STATUE WAVING THE FRENCH FLAG 12. FRENCH FANS Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Embargoed: 13th July 2000 13:00
- Location: BRUSSELS, BELGIUM
- Country: Belgium
- Reuters ID: LVA753DATB6O5TS7MHAS6ULGLYY6
- Story Text: France remained on course to added the European
Championship trophy to their World Cup triumph when they
reached the final of Euro 2000 after a 2-1 golden goal,
victory over Portugal.
The great and the good, including Jacques Chirac the
French president, at the King Baudouin stadium to see France
reach the final of the Euro 2000 tournament.
The French celebrations were subdued despite their team
reaching another major soccer final. The Portuguese outside
the stadium were despondent, claiming their side had been
robbed of their place in the final.
France reached the final with a controversial golden goal
penalty three minutes from the end of extra time amid chaotic
scenes as Portuguese players erupted in fury.
They harangued and jostled referee Guenter Benko and
linesman Igor Sramka after France were awarded a penalty for a
Playmaker Zinedine Zidane scored from the spot to give
France a 2-1 win and a place in the final against the
Netherlands or Italy in Rotterdam on Sunday.
In a scrappy and bruising encounter, a far cry from the
classic match expected between two teams who had graced the
tournament with beautiful play until then, Nuno Gomes had
given Portugal the lead in the 19th minute.
France equalised through Thierry Henry in the 51st and the
match went into extra time and seemed to be heading for a
penalty shootout before the handball.
French substitute Sylvain Wiltord broke clear down the
right and fired a low shot which struck Abel Xavier's
outstretched left hand close to the goal line.
Television replays failed to make clear whether Abel
Xavier's handball was intentional or not though Portuguese
coach Humberto Coelho, who announced his resignation after the
game, said he though it was accidental.
Zidane, who said he had not seen the handball incident,
showed calmness itself when taking the penalty.
France remained the favourites to win the title with
bookmakers who quoted them at 8-11 with the Dutch at 7-4 and
Italy at 5-1.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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