The defending world champion France is one of the eight teams with rich achievements in the World Cup arena. However, not everyone remembers how many times France won the World Cup. Specifically, France has won the World Cup twice in 1998 and 2018. This achievement is on par with Argentina and Uruguay.
First championship 1998
The 16th FIFA World Cup in 1998 was held in France. It is the second time France has hosted a World Cup. The country hosted its first World Cup in 1938.
This is the first World Cup that allows the number of participating teams to increase to 32. 64 matches were held in 10 different cities in France.
That year, the home team was in the same group with Denmark, South Africa, and Saudi Arabia. France had an impressive group stage with 3 wins, beating South Africa 3-0, beating Saudi Arabia 4-0 and beating Denmark 2-1.
Entering the round of 16, the host France had to rely on the goal scored in the second extra time to overcome Paraguay with the minimum score.
The opponent waiting for the roosters in the quarterfinals is the Italian blue shirt team. Both teams could not score during the 120 minutes, so the match was decided by penalty shootout. With home advantage, the French players were calmer and correctly executed 4 shots while the other team only succeeded 3 times. The home team advanced to the semi-finals.
France’s opponent in the semi-finals was Croatia – the team beat the German tanks with a score of 3-0. In this match, the home team played better and decided the match in the official 90 minutes. As a result, the Croatian team lost with a score of 1-2 to give way to the final for France.
In the final, France’s opponent is the defending champion Brazil. The South American team at that time was highly appreciated for successfully defending the championship. But entering the “alien” match Ronaldo and his teammates did not play well, so that the home team scored 3 goals without removing. The French team turned Brazil into a former king to win the world cup for the first time at home.
Second Champion 2018
The 21st FIFA World Cup 2018 was held in Russia. This is the first World Cup to be held in a country in Eastern Europe. 32 teams competed in 64 matches at 12 different stadiums in Russia. This is the World Cup that left many imprints in the history of Russia and during more than 80 years of the world football championship.
France brought to the 2018 World Cup with the most expensive squad in the tournament ($1.1 billion) and was also considered one of the championship candidates.
Coach Didier Deschamps and his team finished the group stage with 7 points to win the top spot. France beat Australia 2-1 and won Peru 1-0 and drew Denmark 0-0 in the last match.
Right in the round of 16, the French team faced another championship candidate, Messi’s Argentina team. However, the team of superstar M10 struggled to pass the group stage and then revealed many weaknesses in the 4-3 defeat. France sent Messi and his teammates home to win tickets to the quarterfinals.
France’s quarter-final opponent is another South American team Uruguay. With a reasonable strategy, Deschamps and his students won 2-0 to go straight to the semi-finals.
The real headache of the French team came when their opponent in the semi-finals was Belgium. The European Red Devils possess a group of talented players and dream of winning the world championship for the first time. As a result, France won with the minimum score and forced Lukaku and his teammates to play the third place match.
If France is one of the championship candidates, Croatia has made a miracle when reaching the final. The first goal of the final came from a nasty free-kick from Griezmann that Mandzukic headed home. Then, Perisic finished to bring the game back to the starting line. Les Bleus was then awarded a penalty and Griezmann did not miss the opportunity to make it 2-1. France’s second goal was scored from a long shot by Pogba. Young talent Mbappe also made a mark with a shot from outside the penalty area to make it 4-1. The final goal was scored by Mandzukic taking advantage of a silly mistake by goalkeeper Hugo Lloris but that was not enough to change the game. The final match ended with the final score of 4-2 victory belonging to the roosters of Golá. The French team won the world championship for the second time in a well-deserved way.
Besides the two world gold cups, the French team also set a number of records in World Cup history. The French team set a record for the champion team conceding the least 2 goals at the 1998 World Cup. The defending champion had the worst record in 2002. France was also one of the teams to be eliminated twice in a row. knockout round by the same opponent.