Deco denies fallout with coach queiroz

DECO has issued a public statement denying any friction with coach Carlos Queiroz at the World Cup.

DECO has issued a public statement denying any friction with coach Carlos Queiroz at the World Cup.

Deco was critical of Queiroz's tactics and substitutions after Portugal's 0-0 draw with Ivory Coast in Group G on Tuesday, saying they were "strange" and "not as good as they might have been". In a statement posted on the Portuguese Football Federation's website yesterday, Deco distanced himself from those views.

He says he expressed his opinions "in the heat of the moment" and had not intended to question Queiroz's leadership.

The Brazilian-born Deco, 32, is retiring from international football after the tournament.

Meanwhile, with their World Cup ambitions on the line, Portugal and North Korea are looking to recapture the spirit of 1966 when they meet in their next Group G game.

Portugal drew 0-0 with Ivory Coast in their opener, and North Korea lost 2-1 to Brazil, making Monday's game in Cape Town a crucial match.

As they get ready for the encounter, the players of both teams are drawing inspiration from their countries' deeds at the 1966 World Cup, which provided national sporting milestones. - Sapa-AP

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