Sun, Jun 11, 2006 - Page 24 News List

Axed Dudek slams Poland after shock loss to Ecuador

AFP , WARSAW, POLAND, AND GELSENKIRCHEN, GERMANY

Ecuador's Ulises de la Cruz, No. 4, and goalkeeper Cristian Mora fight for the ball with Poland's Maciej Zurawski, No. 9, and Mariusz Jop, No. 2, during the Group A World Cup match between Poland and Ecuador in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, on Friday.

PHOTO: EPA

Poland reject Jerzy Dudek lashed out after seeing his teammates crash to a shock 2-0 defeat against Ecuador in their opening World Cup match on Friday.

The Liverpool goalkeeper, who was controversially axed from the squad by coach Pawel Janas, claimed the wrong tactics were employed in the Group A loss at Gelsenkirchen, which dealt a severe blow to the team's hopes of qualifying for the next stage.

"All game we played with a lone striker," said Dudek, the hero of Liverpool's Champions League triumph last year. "It was intolerable."

Carlos Tenorio broke the deadlock in the 24th minute with a stooping header and Agustin Delgado made the points safe for the South Americans with a simple tap-in 10 minutes from time.

"It's painful. We're in a very uncomfortable situation. Now we have to pick up the pieces. We're devastated," he said.

The Poles face Germany in their next game on Wednesday.

Ecuador coach Luis Suarez on Friday saluted his team's winning start, but with games against feisty Costa Rica and Germany still to come, Suarez said he was not getting carried away.

"We are very happy with this first showing, all the more so in that it was obtained against a strong rival who gave us work to do," Suarez said.

"But we have yet to make it to the next phase, and we must keep our feet on the ground," he said, knowing the good work will be undone if Costa Rica can beat them and leave both sides on three points. That would leave Ecuador having to get a result against Germany to go through to the last 16.

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