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China ties France 0-0 at Paralympic football 5-a-side

Updated: 2012-09-03 16:37
( Xinhua)

LONDON - China tied France 0-0 here on Sunday in the London Paralympic football 5-a-side Group B, sharing the top position with defending champions Brazil who crushed Turkey 4-0.

China ties France 0-0 at Paralympic football 5-a-side

China's Wang Zhoubin, center, controls the ball during their London Paralympics football 5-a-side Group B match against France in London, Sept 2, 2012. [Photo/Xinhua]

Both Brazil and China, the Beijing Paralympics' runners-up, got four points and four goals in the first two rounds. France stood third with two goalless ties with Brazil and China. Turkey packed home with two 4-0 losses.

According to the rules, the sequence of the four teams in a group will be decided by points, goal difference, goals for and drawing a lot.

China coach Dong Junjie said after the match,"My team could not get used to the opponents' fierce tackling. My players had never played in such a tough game. Next match against Brazil will be very crucial. Brazil's No 10 and No 7 are better than France's No 10 who gave us huge pressure today."  

Brazil is the only country to have ever won football 5-a-side gold at Paralympics. They beat Argentina in Athens 2004 and China in Beijing 2008.  

Since its Paralympic debut at the Athens 2004 Games, football 5-a-side has expanded to 44 countries and regions on four continents. At London 2012, the tournament introduces the World Cup format, with two groups of four teams. Hosts Britain, Spain, Argentina and Iran are in Group A, while Brazil, France, China and Turkey are in Group B.

The pitch is surrounded with a rebound wall, and each squad is made up of four visually impaired outfield players and a fully or partially sighted goalkeeper. Each team is allowed one guide to call out instructions.

To ensure fairness, all outfield players wear eyeshades. The ball has a bell inside.

China ties France 0-0 at Paralympic football 5-a-side

China's 5-a-side football team enter the field, guided by goalkeeper Xu Huachu, right, before their football 5-a-side Group B match against France at the London Paralympic Games, Sept 2, 2012. [Photo/Xinhua]