The #WorldCupAtHome series is continued by FIFA and today France vs Croatia Semi-Final 1998 will re-broadcast by FIFA.
France vs Croatia
France and Croatia only met twice at the FIFA World Cup, and football fans have remembered the recent encounter for a long time: a 4-2 win for Les Bleus, who won the trophy two years ago. But 20 years before this final, there was a tight semi-final between the two teams at the Stade de France.
A double pack for Lilian Thuram in the second half helped the hosts from France reach the final in 1998, but the win was not easy. Croatia No. 9 Davor Suker opened the gate, goalkeeper Drazen Ladic showed a brave performance and French central defender Laurent Blanc was dismissed in the 76th minute.
Despite Croatia’s best efforts, France took a 2-1 win to reach the final and ultimately win the first World Cup. Now the #WorldCupAtHome brings fans a repeat of this violent semi-final from 1998 on Saturday, May 9th at 6:00 p.m. CEST.
France 2-1 Croatia
8 July 1998 | Stade de France, Saint-Denis
Goalscorers: Croatia: Davor Suker (46’); France: Lilian Thuram (47’, 70’)
France: Fabien Barthez, Bixente Lizarazu, Lilian Thuram, Marcel Desailly, Laurent Blanc, Christian Karembeu (Thierry Henry 31’), Didier Deschamps ©, Emmanuel Petit, Youri Djorkaeff (Frank Lebœuf 77’), Zinedine Zidane, Stephane Guivarc’h (David Trezeguet, 68’)
Croatia: Drazen Ladic, Igor Stimac, Slaven Bilic, Dario Simic, Mario Stanic (Robert Prosinecki 89’), Zvonimir Soldo, Robert Jarni, Zvonimir Boban © (Silvio Maric 63’), Aljosa Asanovic, Goran Vlaovic, Davor Suker
Who was the star?
It is practically impossible to discuss the 1998 semi-final without considering the role played by Thuram. Aligned at right full-back by Jacquet throughout the World Cup, the versatile defender had never previously scored for his country, and would never score again, despite racking up 142 caps. The rearguard he formed with Blanc, Marcel Desailly and Bixente Lizarazu is often considered as France’s greatest-ever back four.
“What was funny was that everyone reacted as I did. All of the players and staff were saying ‘What just happened?’ And let me tell you something. My mother was in the stands. They told her that her son had scored the first goal – she couldn’t understand it. When they told her I’d scored again, she fainted. I’m not joking. Marcel came up to me after the second goal and said, ‘What are you playing at?’ I told him, ‘I don’t really know, to be honest.’”