France blame FIFA for Zidane injury
Jean-Marcel Ferret, the France team doctor, has blamed FIFA's scheduling for the muscle injury that will prevent Zinedine Zidane from playing in at least one World Cup match.
Zidane has played a very long season at the highest level, culminating in the Champions League Final. Ferret believes that more rest time is needed between the club season and the start of the World Cup to prevent similar problems in the future.
'We need a month between the end of the season and the start of the World Cup. With less than a month you can't prepare players.'
'To me it seems detrimental to the players, the competition and the fans.'
With so many injuries to star players including Zidane, Beckham, Henry and Inzaghi, many people would be inclined to agree with Ferret.
However, FIFA claim that the tournament had to start so early in order to avoid the rainy season affecting later rounds.
Critics could respond to this by suggesting that perhaps a region less affected by extreme weather would have been more suitable as a host.
28th May 2002