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Friday, 21 June, 2002, 11:45 GMT 12:45 UK

Seaman says sorry

By Phil McNulty
BBC Sport Online's man with England

David Seaman broke down in tears as he apologised to the nation after his mistake against Brazil sent England crashing out of the World Cup.

England's veteran goalkeeper misjudged a long-range Ronaldinho free-kick that turned out to be Brazil's winner in their 2-1 quarter-final triumph in Shizuoka.

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A clearly devastated Seaman was overcome with emotion as he met the media after the game, speaking only briefly before being led away sympathetically by an FA official.

He said: "I just want to say sorry to all the fans. I feel as if I have let people down.

"I thought he mis-kicked the free-kick and I misjudged it."

" If anyone makes a scapegoat out of David Seaman after that it will be an absolute disgrace "
David Beckham
England captain

Seaman added: "The lads have been fantastic. They have supported me, telling me I had kept us in the tournament."

England skipper David Beckham backed his keeper as he said: "If anyone makes a scapegoat out of David Seaman after that it will be an absolute disgrace.

"He's been the best goalkeeper in the tournament. It was a freak goal that was a cross that ended up in the net."

And striker Teddy Sheringham, who came on as a second-half substitute for England, said: "Seaman is still the world's best.

"Goals like that happen sometimes. If you saw him in training and watched him in the World Cup you would see why I still think he is the number one."

England's Kieron Dyer also said: "David Seaman has been a mountain for England for the last 10 years.

"No-one is blaming him for anything. He has been a magnificent servant for his country and his saves have been keeping us in games for years."


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