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Scolari delighted with Portugal victory over Brazil
February 07, 2007 17:17 IST
Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari said on Tuesday his team's 2-0 win over his compatriots from Brazil meant more in terms of preparation for their next European qualifier than personal satisfaction.
"Victory over a team that has been top of the world rankings and five-times world champion gives us more self-esteem and confidence before our next Euro qualifying match against Belgium," Scolari, who led Brazil to the fifth of those world titles in 2002, told a news conference.
Scolari has now been in charge of the last two matches Portugal has played against Brazil and Tuesday's win was the second time his Portuguese side had beaten his homeland.
"It was a very good game, and either side could have won," he said, "but we made the better use of our opportunities, although they had more opportunities than us.
"It was a good technical game and I think the English fans enjoyed it. It was very much from the South American school of football, but Portugal are part of the South American school.
"More importantly, I think they gained a lot of confidence from the victory. It was a good chance to see some new players and observe how they reacted."
Scolari also said that Manchester United winger Cristiano Ronaldo, who was 22 on Monday, was made captain at the request of Carlos Silva, the vice-president of the Portuguese FA, who died on Sunday.
Scolari explained: "On Saturday, Mr Silva asked me to make him captain as a gesture. He thought the English fans would give him a difficult time and this was a response. He is too young to be captain, but Mr Silva asked me, and now he is no longer with us."
A period of silence was observed before kickoff to mark his death. Ronaldo also asked the Portuguese FA not to organise any birthday celebrations as a mark of respect for Silva's death.
Dunga, who lost his unbeaten record as Brazil coach in his sixth match in charge, braved a very cold night in north London wearing a garish shirt that looked like it would have been more at home in a 1970s disco than in the technical area of a football ground.
"I wore this shirt and no jacket because the adrenalin rush of the match kept me warm," he said.
He added: "When you lose it's always hard, a complete frustration."
He explained, however, that several players lost their edge in the second half through fatigue and the big names like Kaka were marked more tightly.
Scolari said he put Petit on Kaka in the second half and Tiago in the holding role, tighting his midfield line.
"We should have used the wings more," Dunga said.
He said that not having Ronaldinho and Robinho, who were nursing minor injuries, was not a factor and "when you lose it is entirely the coach's responsibility."