France 98 got underway on this day back in 1998, with holders Brazil facing huge underdogs Scotland in Paris. The Scots ran the Brazilians very close, but ultimately lost the game 2-1.
Brazil had some fantastic players out on the field such as Roberto Carlos, Rivaldo, Ronaldo and Bebeto. Striker Denilson also played a small part in the game after coming off the bench in the final 20 minutes. He would become the world’s most expensive player later in the summer, moving from Sao Paulo to Real Betis for £21.5 million.
When Cesar Sampaio headed in from a corner after only five minutes, most people watching were predicting the Brazilians to rack up a hatful of goals. But Scotland defended well and John Collins equalised with a penalty in the 38th minute.
Then in the 74th minute, Brazil found the net in the cruellest of circumstances. Cafu raced into the box to get on the end of Dunga’s through ball played over the Scotland defence. He managed to toe-poke the ball at goal but it hit the on-rushing Scottish goalkeeper Jim Leighton.
Unfortunately, the ball then rebounded off defender Kris Boyd before bouncing into the back of the net. It was a desperately unlucky goal to concede and Scotland were made to pay for it later in the tournament.
In their remaining group games, Scotland drew 1-1 with Norway in Bordeaux before losing 3-0 to an impressive Morocco side in their final match.
Brazil went on to reach the Final, where they lost 3-0 to hosts France. The Final was played at the Stade de France, the same stadium where they started off their tournament against Scotland!
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