Argentina, England post wins

France held scoreless by Russia, England and Argentina chalk up wins as 28 of the 32 World Cup soccer finalists were in action in warm-up matches.

updated: February 25, 2007 09:27 IST
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World Cup holders France were held scoreless by Russia, but England and Argentina both chalked up morale-boosting wins as 28 of the 32 World Cup soccer finalists were seen in action in warm-up matches yesterday. Brazil and Portugal shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw in Lisbon, which saw a sparkling first half from golden Brazilian trio Ronaldo, Ronaldinho and Rivaldo, playing together for the first time. Italy, tipped for glory at the finals in South Korea and Japan, drew 1-1 with Uruguay in Milan, while perennial World Cup under-achiever Spain underlined their intentions by crushing Northern Ireland 5-0 in Belfast. Michael Owen crowned his first game as England captain by scoring the opening goal in a 4-0 drubbing of fellow World Cup qualifiers Paraguay at Anfield. The 22-year-old Liverpool striker, given the role in place of injured skipper David Beckham to become the youngest England captain since Bobby Moore in 1963, headed England into the lead after good work from club colleague Steven Gerrard. Argentina meanwhile showed their battling qualities to clinch a 1-0 win over Germany. (PTI)