The two countries that in 2006 were supposedly the best in the world are out of this World Cup - humiliated in the first round.
Champions Italy suffered the ignominy of finishing behind New Zealand in Group F after losing 3-2 to Slovakia in the most dramatic game of the tournament so far.
Their defence of the World Cup is over, two days after the 2006 runners-up France were packed off on to their economy flight home.
So what went wrong? In France's case, the source of the malaise is not hard to find. The team simply impaled themselves on a poisonous stake of internal conflict.
For Italy, itRead More »from End of the world for 2006 finalists