Congratulations to France: Scolari
"We knew it would be a difficult match ... But, it was a deserved victory for France," said the Portugal coach.Updated: Jul 06, 2006 12:03 IST
Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari paid tribute to France after they ended his dreams of a second successive World Cup triumph with a 1-0 semi-final defeat of his team on Wednesday.
Zinedine Zidane's first-half penalty doomed Scolari, who had guided Brazil to victory in 2002 in Japan, to his first World Cup finals defeat in 13 matches.
After the final whistle, Scolari angrily berated the officials on the field for the 33rd-minute penalty decision against Ricardo Carvalho but he later conceded that France had deserved to go through to Sunday's final against Italy.
"It was deserved victory, definitely, for France. There are situations that are difficult. We did everything we could, we did our best. Congratulations to France," he told.
"We have to accept this. We knew it would be a difficult match and had a few chances but, unfortunately, didn't do it and lost."
Scolari's future as Portugal coach will now be open to further speculation after he was reported in British and Portuguese media to be on the verge of becoming England boss before the World Cup finals.
"I have a contract until the end of July then we'll see what happens," he said.
England have since appointed Steve McClaren as manager but Brazil, who lost in the quarter-finals to France too, are widely expected to have a vacancy as coach open shortly.