The France national soccer or football team also known as Les Bleus are one of the major teams to beat in the 2010 FIFA World Cup. France ho were World Cup Champions in 1998 have qualified for the World cup finals for a record 4th consecutive team, but many will be looking to see whether and how the French team can regain the 1998 glory when they won the cup.
Known to produce some of the legendary talents in world soccer like Zinedine Zidane and Thiery Henry, France has been less convincing in recent world cup finals, even facing a humiliating group stage elimination in the 2002 World Cup finals.
But the French showed in the 2006 World Cup that they are capable of wining the greatest football trophy of the World Cup by going to the finals and only losing to Current World Cup holders Italy on penalties.
With the current crop of young talent including Franck Ribery, Karim Benzema and Yoann Gourcuff, the France team might well be key favourities to lift the World Cup and will be one fo the teams to beat in South Africa this World Cup final.
The French open their World Cup trophy hunt campaign on Friday June 11 with an enchanting match against Uruguay in Durban, just after the opening match between hosts Bafana Bafana of South Africa and Mexico, the other two teams in Group A.
You might understand why many France fans are sure they will at least go to the qualifying stage, because they can easily get points from either of their group competitors South Africa, Uruguay or Mexico.
But since every national team has come to the World Cup finals after grueling soccer competitions in which they excelled, the French will be cautious not to underrate anyone if they are to avoid what will be a shock exit should they fail to qualify from the group stages.
Their 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification campaign provided enough lessons of this, as the French only qualified after a play off with Ireland wining 2-1 on aggregate after coming second in Group 7 of the European Zone.
The star players of France
The big names of Zinedine Zidane, Fabien Barthez, Claude Makelele and Lilian Thuram all called time on their international careers in 2006, a new selection of senior figures has stepped forward. With Patrick Vieira having long struggled with injury, sole France 1998 survivor Thierry Henry has taken the captain’s armband, with William Gallas the leader at the back and both Jeremy Toulalan and Lassana Diarra indispensable in midfield. Meanwhile, the emergence of Yoann Gourcuff, the talent of Franck Ribery and the rejuvenation of Nicolas Anelka have given the coach a variety of options in attack, where Karim Benzema, Andre-Pierre Gignac, Florent Malouda and Loic Remy will also be hoping to feature.
France Coach Raymond Domenech has been in charge of the French team since 2004 but this South Africa World Cup is his biggest platform to show what an achiever he is by lifting the World Cup 2010.
“The objective was to qualify. We knew it wouldn’t be easy, but I never had any doubts. We’ve had difficulties for two years now, but everyone kept believing and they were justified in doing so. We grabbed hold of the right to take part in something exceptional – a World Cup in South Africa.,” Domenech, said recently.
French Football Honours
– 1 FIFA World Cup (1998)
– 2 FIFA Confederations Cup (2001, 2003)
– 2 UEFA European Championships (1984, 2000)
France National Football team Squad
France Goalkeepers at 2010 FIFA World Cup
France Defenders at 2010 FIFA World Cup
- 2 Bakari SAGNA
- 3 Eric ABIDAL
- 4 Anthony REVEILLERE
- 5 William GALLAS
- 6 Marc PLANUS
- 13 Patrice EVRA
- 17 Sebastien SQUILLACI
- 22 Gael CLICHY
France Midfielders at 2010 FIFA World Cup
France Strikers at 2010 FIFA World Cup