All is well in host camp

Associated Press

Alcochete, June 26:

Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari on Saturday insisted he and skipper Luis Figo had not fallen out following the side’s nailbiting Euro 2004 quarter-final win over England. Figo, at 31 desperate finally to taste glory at international level for the Portuguese, who have never won a major trophy, was furious when Scolari hauled him off with 15 minutes of normal time remaining against England, sending on Helder Postiga who promptly equalised and forced extra-time. The Portuguese eventually advanced in a penalty shootout but by then Figo was in the dressing room on his own after demonstratively walking around the touchline and down the tunnel, so avoiding Scolari.

“Relations with Figo are fine. He is not the kind of guy to open up and pour out his heart, he is a private person,” Scolari said. Scolari, out to achieve a unique double having led Brazil to the 2002 World Cup, insisted there was no rift. “Everyone has their own personality and way of dealing with a situation. People experience the atmosphere differently and you have to live with that. I am the one who has to take the decisions regardless of how the players feel,” Scolari added. Team doctor Enrique Jones meanwhile said Portugal were hoping that Jorge Andrade and Nuno Gomes would recover from ankle strains in time for the semis.