France entered the FIFA World Cup 2022 as the defending champion, after beating Croatia in Russia four years ago.
Football bears a frugal memory and the win, with coach Didier Deschamps on cloud nine is all in the past now. In Qatar, the team has continued its miraculous consistency, becoming the first team to reach consecutive finals since Brazil in 2002.
How many World Cup finals has France been in?
France has been to three FIFA World Cup finals, in 1998, 2006 and 2018. This will be its fourth FIFA World Cup final appearance.
Before the FIFA World Cup final, here are all the performances of Les Blues in the final:
Brazil vs France – 1998
An in-form Zinedine Zidane was one of the most prominent stars in the FIFA World Cup as France hosted the tournament all by itself, for the first time.
A brace by Lilian Thuram has taken Les Blues into the final and Didier Deschamps – the head coach of the current team was teh captain of the side.
Zidane, one of the most expensive midfielders that time, established his aerial quality with two headed goals in the first half, with the first coming from a cross by Emmanuel Petit and the other from a corner kick by Youri Djorkaeff.
Brazil, despite having Ronaldo and Rivaldo is attack, looked toothless as France piled on misery with a second-half injury time goal by Petit, with his team won the World Cup for the first time.
Italy vs France – 2006
Another World Cup final for France, Zidane again in the spotlight. This time, for a very different reason.
France was ahead withing seven minutes of kick-off with Zidane scoring from the spot as he became just the fourth player to score in two World Cup finals after Pele, Paul Breitner, and Vava.
But Marco Materazzi’s equaliser in the 19th minute locked the scoreline to 1-1 to force it into extra-time.
That was when the two goal scorers – Zidane and Materazzi – were involved in an altercation, which saw France’s no. 10 head-butting the Italian in one of the most infamous fouls in World Cup history.
Zidane’s football career ended with a red card, becoming the fourth player and second Frenchman to get a red card in a FIFA World Cup final, after Pedro Monzon (1990), Gustavo Dezotti (1990) and Marcel Desailly (1998).
The match ultimately ended on penalties, with Italy winning its third World Cup 5-3 against Les Blues.
France vs Croatia – 2018
Emmanuel Petit had scored and assisted 20 years ago with Deschamps in the team.
With the former France captain playing the role of a coach in Russia, he saw Antoinne Griezmann take up Petit’s responsibility, scoring and assisting a goal each.
His free-kick saw Mario Mandzukic score an own goal to open the scoring for France, but Croatia equalised within a minute, with Ivan Perisic finsding the net.
Perisic, however, gave away a penalty after he failed to mark Blaise Matuidi and – following a VAR check – the penalty was given to France, which Griezmann converted to regain the lead.
France widened the margin further with goals from Paul Pogba and Kylian Mbappe.
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A goalkeeping error by Hugo Lloris saw Mandzukic finally score against the opposition, but it was not enough as France became just the sixth country to win the World Cup more than once.
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