The World Champions France beat the surprise package of the tournament, the home team Japan by the only goal of the game to win the FIFA Confederations Cup and complete an unprecedented hat-trick of three major trophies in as many years. But they had to defend resolutely at times as Japan staged a second-half fightback to send their fans home encouraged about their chances for the World Cup on home soil in twelve months' time.

The World Champions had rarely allowed the home team much decent possession in the first half in front of a near capacity crowd of over 65000, despite Shinji Ono's efforts to rally his troops. Vieira's goal just before the half hour came as the inevitable expression of this dominance, when the lanky midfielder beat the stranded Kawaguchi to Leboeuf's long cross.