Argentina follow France out of the World Cup
YOKOHAMA, Japan, June 12 (Reuters) - The World Cup formbook was turned
on its head for the second time in 24 hours on Wednesday when pre-tournament
favourites Argentina followed defending champions France out of the Cup.
Argentina's much-vaunted array of talent drew 1-1 with Sweden in group
F and made almost as dismal a first round exit as the French, winning
just one of three games and scoring only twice.
France, the majestic team which has dominated world soccer for four years,
went out on Tuesday without winning a game and without scoring a single
So far eight teams have reached the second round but only one is a genuine
Tournament debutants Senegal, who beat France 1-0 in the opening game,
have struck a mighty blow for Africa and eliminated a third former world
champion in Uruguay following their 3-3 draw with the South Americans
Brazil, who have won a record four World Cups, are through after just
two matches and the other six are Europeans -- Denmark, England, Germany,
Ireland, Spain and Sweden. All of them have been this far before.
Germany, three times world champions, and England, who won the World
Cup in 1966, may now feel the main obstacles in their way have been removed.
Only seven teams have ever won the World Cup. Italy, facing a tough third
game with Mexico, could yet become the fourth to make a first round exit.
Italy play Mexico on Thursday.
There are still a number of outsiders who could advance -- co-hosts South
Korea and Japan are both well placed to reach the last 16 as are the United
States, Costa Rica and South Africa.
The World Cup is suddenly wide open.