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Real Madrid midfielder Zinedine Zidane has predicted France and England will meet in the final of EURO 2004.

Zidane will come face-to-face with Real Madrid teammate David Beckham when France meet England in the Group B opener on June 13.

“For us, the game against England is the match,” Zidane told L’Equipe.

“People need to see big matches and France against England is a big match.

“But I see no reason why we shouldn’t meet again in the final.”

“Euro 2004 will be difficult,” he added.

“Every side that has qualified will be hard to beat and Croatia and Switzerland (also in Group B) will make it tough in the group stages.”

Zidane also took the opportunity to eenjoy a joke at Beckham’s expense.

“I could see the fear in his eyes when he came up to me in the morning at training to talk about the draw,’ Zidane joked.

“I could see by his face he wasn’t happy to meet France in the first game and we shared a joke.

“We agreed it was a pity we will meet so early in the competition but we can meet again in the final.

Meanwhile, Beckham admitted that the match against France represented a huge challenge for England, but one he was looking forward to.

“I didn’t expect to meet France so early but, in this level of competition, if you want to go far you have to be able to beat the best,’ said Beckham.

“It is great to be playing France.

“Personally I always like playing the biggest teams and against players of the highest level and France have world-class players.

“It will be exciting to play in such a big match and Thierry Henry is, for me, one of the biggest stars on the planet and a great person.

“I like to think England have a good chance but France have to be one of the favourites because they have so many fantastic players.”

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