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In France 98, all the neutrals will be cheering on

Jamaica. EVERY WORLD CUP needs a team we can all adore. While the trophy tends to end up in the arms of the brutal Argentinians, the stoically dull Germans and the dying-swan happy Italians, the tournaments tend to be remembered for the antics of the newcomers teaming with talent and entirely devoid of tactical nous. It was Nigeria in 94, Cameroon in 90. Even the Scots, each time they turn up with their fornightly passports, tend to bullet into the hearts of neutrals. This time it's Jamaica's turn and, as the Channel 4 film of the team The Reggae Boyz shows, with all true romance come elements of high farce. ’When I came here it was Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff, reggae, dread and marijuana,’ recalls their Brazilian coach Rene Simoes. And mistaken identity. On meeting his future employers for the first time, the Jamaican version of Jim Farry thought Simoes was his chauffeur.

Qualification for the Finals and clashes with Argentina, Croatia and Japan means that there’s now more to Jamaican football than pictures of Bob Marley playing keepie-uppie in a Kingston park.

’You see people wearing the yellow shirts everywhere it's a cultural revolution in a way,’ insists the film’s producer Rupert Harris. 'The players are seen as national heroes and role models, and all the mothers want their daughters married off to a Reggae Boy.’ (Brian Donaldson)

DISASTB Fun 500nm

Why does a mention of Argentina 78 still make grown men cry?

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5 Jaa Starn Ronaldo superbly this season to (Ho land) The Dutch inherit the mantle of the legendary Player of the Year Franco Baresi. Rivaldo (Brazil) The midfielder recently joined Marcelo Salas (Chile) Alex followed Ronaldo to Barcelona and Carlos, he's one of the great free— Manchester United for Ferguson decided against buying inspired them to the Spanish title. kick experts, with four goals for over £10 million. AM: 'He’s Salas last winter, and probably kicked AM: ‘He may be in and out of the his country. He also happens to very solid and strong himself when his clinical finishing team because he’s not fully be a goalkeeper. AM: ’He’s got technically, though personally destroyed England this February. established himself. His problem is real personality, and I'm sure ldon’t think defenders are Fernando Morientes (Spain) that Brazil have too many left-Sided he’ll come up to take worth that kind of money.’ What a year for the former reserve players.’ penalties.’ who became Real Madrid's leading David Trezeguet (France) The Michael Owen THE “er LIST marksman and helped them lift the man whose strike against (England) Eighteen-year- Oliver Bierhoff European Cup. Manchester United at Old Trafford old Owen struck 23 times for (Germany) His form as Taribo West (Nigeria) The ended the Reds’ European hopes. Liverpool last season and became top scorer in Italy's Serie A means rampaging, dreadlocked wing-back AM: ' I really rate Trezeguet, the England’s youngest cap this century. that he, rather than Klinsmann, will enjoyed a terrific campaign with Monaco striker.’ AM: ’l'm very impressed. He’s very lead the German attack. Inter Milan, although is quick Jose Luis Chilavert sharp and is certainly a player to Alessandro Nesta (Italy) The temper may be a problem. (Paraguay) Alongside Roberto reckon with in France.’ Lazio defender man-marked (Lorin McDougall)

28 May 11 JU" 1998 WE LIST 103