> Sports > 2002 FIFA WORLD CUP 

France France


While fans and pundits alike didn't expect wonders from France in 1998, Roger Lemerre's side starts off as favourites in this edition. The reigning champs take the field with a majority of players from France '98.

On the plus side, these players have honed their skills and established themselves in Serie A, Primera Liga and the English Premiership. Today, Zidane, Thuram, Vieira, Henry and Wiltord have matured and rank among the heavyweights in world soccer.

But the downside to this squad is its greying players, notably in defence. France can be caught napping with the fading of aging stars at the back.

Zidane is the mainstay of France's 2002 campaign. If he reproduces his form and weaves patterns around rival defences, France should be in the driver's seat. With Denmark, Senegal and Uruguay in its group, France should advance comfortably into the pre-quarters. The competition could get stiffer thereon, with Argentina, Portugal, Brazil and Spain staking claim for the coveted title.

Lemerre, who was a defender in his playing days and appeared six times for his country, ensured that France kept its winning ways after World Cup '98 by also bagging Euro 2000. Thus the burden of expectation will lie on them.

Winners: 1998.

Ulrich Rame, Fabien Barthez, Gregory Coupet.

Vincent Candela, Bixente Lizarazu, Philippe Christanval, Marcel Desailly, Mikael Silvestre, Lilian Thuram, Frank Lebouef, Willy Sagnol.

Patrick Vierra, Youri Djorkaeff, Claude Makelele, Alain Boghossian, Zinedine Zidane, Emmanuel Petit, Johan Micoud.

Sylvain Wiltord, Thierry Henry, Djibril Cisse, David Trezeguet, Christophe Dugarry.

Latest News

June 14, 2002

  • Zidane blames tough season for France's exit

  • June 13, 2002
  • Fallen French dodge forgiving fans

  • June 11, 2002
  • France's fall swift and unexpected

  • French pain is Danes gain

  • June 10, 2002
  • Denmark wary of France

  • June 8, 2002
  • Zidane set to play against Denmark

  • Champions France, favourites Argentina in trouble

  • June 7, 2002
  • How come French can shoot but can't score?

  • June 6, 2002
  • Lemerre: There's still hope for France

  • France and W'Cup need Zidane

  • June 5, 2002
  • France determined to bounce back

  • June 4, 2002
  • Doc: Zidane's condition improving

  • France determined to bounce back

  • June 3, 2002
  • Zidane insists he will not take risks

  • France ready to ring tactical changes

  • June 2, 2002
  • Zidane's condition is improving, says team doctor

  • June 1, 2002
  • Zidane doubtful starter v Uruguay

  • May 31, 2002
  • Senegal shock France

  • A soccer lesson from Senegal

  • May 30, 2002
  • France aim for winning start

  • May 29, 2002
  • France can cope without Zidane - Djorkaeff

    May 27, 2002
  • Zidane will miss first two matches
  • Injury scares for France, Italy in final warm-up

    May 26, 2002
  • Zidane suffers thigh injury

    May 23, 2002
  • Opening match is crucial: Zidane

    May 22, 2002
  • Djorkaeff and Cisse star in French victory
  • Delighted dad Zidane joins France squad

    May 21, 2002
  • France may change formation
  • France fret over delayed Zidane
  • World champions France begin to feel pressure

    May 19, 2002
  • France bid fans farewell with a defeat

  • May 17, 2002
  • Nothing but repeat victory will do: Lemerre
  • France missing key players for Belgium friendly

  • May 15, 2002
  • FIFA rankings: France No.1; Brazil, Argentina second

  • May 14, 2002
  • Journalists back Zidane to become World Cup star

  • Zidane to quit after four years with Real Madrid

  • May 13, 2002
  • Zidane keeps thoughts to himself

  • France to focus on minds, Germans on knee as World Cup nears

  • May 10, 2002
  • Former captain Deschamps sees France as favourites

  • March 28, 2002
  • France still not a "dream team": Lemerre

  • Pele shirt scores auction record

  • April 18, 2002
  • Argentina beat Germany, Brazil, France draw

  • April 26, 2002
  • Eriksson must select McManaman, says Zidane

  • May 7, 2002
  • French squad now known, no Anelka

  • France must answer case for the defence

  • December 1, 2001
  • France, Senegal to kick off 2002 World Cup

  • Henry to light France's World Cup fire


      © 1996-2002 India Limited. All Rights Reserved.