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Handing it Brazil

Rob Hughes notes that Brazil's 3-1 win over Ivory Coast was never in doubt after Luis Fabiano scored the first goal, the video of which could be used to teach children how to shoot. But on his second goal, Fabiano handled the ball with both arms before unleashing his shot.

Luis Felipe Scolari, the man who coached Brazil to the 2002 World Cup title, joked: “Once with the hand is a foul. Twice with the hand is no foul. Is a new rule.”

Ivory Coast coach Sven-Goran Eriksson said: “The first goal Brazil took very well. A quick combination between Kaka and Fabiano, they did it very well. It’s difficult to cope with Fabiano, but it's more than difficult when he is allowed to handle the ball not once, but twice."

As for the second card yellow to Kaka that saw Brazilian playmaker ejected, Hughes writes, the truth was that Kader Keita barged into Kaka, who used his arm to fend off the aggressor. Kaka’s elbow brushed Keita’s chest, whereupon Keita fell to the ground, clutching not his ribs but his face. The referee was duped.

Read the whole story at New York Times »

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