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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 May, 2004, 12:37 GMT 13:37 UK
Fontaine fumes over 2010 report
Durosimi Thomas
North Africa Correspondent

Just Fontaine
Fontaine says Fifa's concerns are baseless

Moroccan-born French legend Just Fontaine has attacked Fifa's 2010 World Cup bids report for criticising the North African country's football infrastructure.

Morocco appeared to be gaining ground fast on favourites South Africa ahead of the vote in Zurich on 15 May.

But Fifa's inspection report, published on Tuesday, suggested their bid fell short of those presented by South Africa and Egypt.

The Fifa report expressed concern that work had not begun on three stadiums which Morocco said four years ago were already under construction.

But Fontaine lashed out at the world body, saying it was "wrong" to publish the report on the Internet in the first place.

Fontaine was speaking at a ceremony organised by the Morocco 2010 bid committee in Casablanca to honour the country's former football greats.

He said: "I was in the French [bid] committee and the Stade de France wasn't built yet but the government provided all the guarantees.

"It 's the same for Morocco because the King has also given the guarantees.

"And it's not normal that they publish in the newspaper or Internet - it's the first time they're doing this."

Fontaine, 70, was born in the Moroccan city of Marrakech but played for France as Morocco was under French rule.

He scored 13 goals at the 1958 World Cup finals in Sweden - a record to this day.

Fontaine is an ambassador for Morocco's bid.


SEE ALSO
SA lead 2010 race
04 May 04  |  African
Fifa's 2010 World Cup report
04 May 04  |  African
Blatter expects tight finish
26 Apr 04  |  African



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