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   June 25, 2002 | 1445 IST


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History stands in Turkey's way

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History shows that it takes an established soccer heavyweight to knock four-times winners Brazil out of the World Cup.

Turkey, who have never won a major trophy and are playing in the tournament for only the second time, will try to buck that trend when they tackle the crowd-pleasing South Americans in an intriguing semi-final on Wednesday.

Brazil, the most successful side in World Cup history, won the tournament in 1958, 1962, 1970 and 1994.

Discounting the first two World Cups in 1930 and 1934 -- 10 Brazil players made their debuts in their 1930 defeat by Yugoslavia -- the list of teams to eliminate Brazil from the tournament reads like a who's who of great teams from yesteryear.

In 1938 Italy knocked Brazil out in the semi-finals with a 2-1 victory and went on to lift the trophy.

On home soil in 1950 Brazil only needed a draw in the final match against Uruguay, the 1930 winners, to clinch their first World Cup triumph.

But they lost 2-1 to their bitter South American rivals in front of a 174,000 crowd in Rio's Maracana Stadium.

Four years later Olympic champions Hungary, inspired by Ferenc Puskas, dumped Brazil out at the quarter-final stage after the infamous 'Battle of Berne' in Switzerland, when three players were sent off and a changing-room punch-up followed the game.

In England in 1966, Eusebio's Portugal inflicted the fatal defeat on a disappointing Brazil side seeking a third successive triumph.

Brazil had already lost to Hungary again when the Portuguese, who went on to reach the semi-finals where they lost to eventual winners England, beat them 3-1 in the first round.

In 1974 Brazil arrived in Germany as holders again having completed their hat-trick in thrilling fashion four years earlier in Mexico.

This time it took a 2-0 second-round defeat by Johan Cruyff's Total Footballers from the Netherlands, who eventually lost in the final, to stifle the Samba beat.


Four years later in Argentina, Brazil did not lose a game but were eliminated in dubious circumstances when the hosts and eventual winners, with whom Brazil had drawn 0-0, defeated Peru 6-0 in their final game of the second group phase.

In 1982 Paolo Rossi's hat-trick gave Italy a thrilling 3-2 second round victory over an immensely talented Brazil side featuring the likes of Zico, Socrates and Eder. Italy went on to complete the third of their three World Cup triumphs.

Michel Platini's France, the 1984 European champions, conquered Brazil in the 1986 quarter-finals in Mexico after a penalty shootout following a pulsating 1-1 draw.

In 1990 a Claudio Caniggia strike gave Argentina, eventual finalists, a 1-0 second round victory over their South American neighbours.

After their 1994 triumph in the United States, Brazil collapsed 3-0 in the final at the 1998 tournament to hosts France, a final overshadowed by a mystery illness that affected Brazilian striker Ronaldo.

In the end, there are two ways of looking at Turkey's task at Saitama Stadium on Wednesday. Either they must break the sequence. Or they must prove that they, too, are a great side.

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