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Age no concern for Domenech

07 Jul 2006 - 09:05:12

France coach Raymond Domenech has no worries that his ageing side will find it hard to raise their game one more time, for the World Cup final against Italy on Sunday.

The likes of Zinedine Zidane, Lilian Thuram and Fabien Barthez will bow out of international football after the showpiece in Berlin and Domenech is confident that they will be up for the biggest challenge of all.

He told L'Equipe: "If they were tired at the end of the Portugal game, it's because of the Portuguese, who made us work very hard.

"Being tired after a semi-final is normal. You are always tired after a match, but the final will give wings to everyone.

"For me they are not old. When you are 30 or 35 you can still follow a preparation and then it is faith that makes the difference. They must believe what they are doing is meaningful.

"Over six months you can expect players of that age to have problems, but not over a period of a month and seven matches.

"Luis Figo is the same age as Zidane and he wasn't bad on Wednesday. We are not the only team with old players."

"We must not go there with doubts and play a match thinking about what will happen after the match or having mentally already played the final, that happens a lot."


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