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   03 June, 2002 | 1632 IST



France get the blues

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Brazil rally to down Turkey

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Brian Homewood

Rivaldo struck a penalty three minutes from time to give Brazil a controversial 2-1 victory in their opening group C World Cup match, which saw two Turkey players being sent off, on Monday.

Turkey defender Alpay Ozalan pulled back substitute Luizao as he bore down on goal to concede the penalty on the edge of the 18-metre box and was immediately shown the red card in the 86th minute.

Ronaldo (R) celebrates his goal with team mate Ronaldinho.Turkey were incensed by the decision by South Korean referee Kim Young-joo but Rivaldo coolly converted from the spot.

Seconds before the final whistle Hakan Unsal was sent off for kicking the ball at Rivaldo as he prepared to take a corner. The Barcelona player collapsed theatrically clutching his head, although the ball hit his legs.

Ronaldo had earlier scored his first goal in a competitive international for nearly three years to equalise five minutes after half-time.

Turkey, playing at their first World Cup for 48 years, stunned the four-times world champions when Hasan Sas gave them the lead in first half injury time.

Brazil, with Ronaldo showing flashes of the play which made him twice World Player of the Year, dominated the match but were repeatedly denied by Turkish goalkeeper Rustu Recber.

After a lively opening, the first half exploded in the last five minutes as Rustu produced three saves in a row to keep Brazil at bay and Turkey went up the other end and scored.

Rivaldo (L) throws his arms out wide as he celebrates his penalty goal with Denilson (C rear) and Edmilson (R).The Fenerbahce goalkeeper made two saves from Rivaldo -- one a close range header when the Barcelona player seemed certain to score -- and one from Ronaldinho, after he had broken through the defence.

Then, with the last move of the first half, Turkey went upfield, Yildiray Basturk chipped the ball over the Brazil defence and the lively Sas sneaked behind Cafu and whacked the ball left-footed past Marcos.

Rustu miraculously defied Rivaldo and Ronaldo four minutes into the second half but in the next attack, Rivaldo crossed from the left and Ronaldo beat three defenders to the ball to finally beat Rustu.

Shortly afterwards, Ronaldo jigged his way through the defence but Rustu saved again.

Brazil twice appeared set to score in their following attacks but again found Rustu in the way. First, he dived at the feet of Lucio to stop the Bayer Leverkusen player scoring from close range and then he tipped away a drive by Juninho.

Turkey's best second half effort came when Marcos fumbled blistering free kick by Hakan Unsal.

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