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Sunday, 30 June, 2002, 14:59 GMT 15:59 UK

Scolari enjoys final word

By Phil McNulty
BBC Sport Online, Yokohama

Brazil coach Felipe Scolari declared his World Cup winning side had brought the joy back to football after they claimed their fifth crown by beating Germany in Yokohama.

Scolari shed tears of emotion as he reflected on Ronaldo's two goals - and the vindication of his policies after suffering heavy criticism during the qualifying campaign.

" The defence has been very much criticised, but it is the best in the world because they have excellent technical and tactical skills "
Luiz Felipe Scolari

"We told the players that being second is like being last as far as Brazil is concerned," he said.

"But we wanted to come first by playing with joy and fun and this is what we have done.

"I feel the joy and happiness of our victory and I want the whole Brazilian nation to remember the images of these boys playing with joy, and we will all celebrate together.

"We have done our job, and it is a job that has taken a lot of hard work. It is a historic moment.

"The World Cup is coming home, and for Brazil to be champions again is unforgettable."

Scolari added: "We have shown great individual skills and Ronaldo was again outstanding, but it is time to talk about our defence, who again conceded no goals in the World Cup final.

"It has been very much criticised, but in my view it is the best defence in the world because they have excellent technical and tactical skills.

"Germany played as we expected, strong and powerfully, but we had the people like Ronaldo who could bring an individuality to a situation, and this helped us achieve our goal.

"It is a marvellous feeling to be world champions, and it is a tribute to the strength of this group of players that we have done it. They are very united and determined.

"We have won seven matches and beaten good teams, so we feel we are worthy champions.

"But we are also grateful for all the goodwill we have been shown, both by the Brazilian people and while we have been here."

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