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The Irish aren't afraid of the French

Updated: November 9, 2009, 6:29 PM ET
By Ken Lawrence | ESPN.com

Ireland coach Giovanni Trapattoni has yet to blink. He's playing a big blind, and across from him France coach Raymond Domenech fidgets and dabs away the sweat from his top lip.

Domenech has talked about becoming a professional poker player and hitting Vegas one day, but in his current career the stakes could not be higher.

On the table lies the pride of French national football, damaged first by a humiliating early exit from the Euro 2008 finals, then by the faltering, fragile ...

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