No bravado talks, no sneering, no juvenile talking down like the boys from Spain, the Brazilian coach Carlos Parreira only has a venerable air of respect for France. In fact, he got it spot on with his quiet observations --'Our rivals are no ordinary team, they were world champions.'
'We know what awaits us,' he continues. 'They are in no hurry to play their game, they play with a certain calmness and suddenly explode with a fast manoeuvre.'
His words carry a certain aroma of ancient wisdom, notably from China, when Sun Tze decreed elegantly in his Art of War:
Tersely intepreted as Know thyself, know thy enemy, a hundred battles won, will France perish by the Brazilian sword of wisdom?