News Matches
World Cup

France 1998 World Cup squad - Who were Les Bleus heroes and where are they now?

1:00 AM EST 12/12/22
France World Cup 1998
Who led Les Bleus to their first-ever World Cup trophy and what has happened to those players since?

France were the hosts of the 1998 World Cup and they gave their fans reasons to celebrate throughout the tournament.

They were flawless in the group stages, recording comfortable wins over South Africa and Saudi Arabia, before narrowly seeing off Denmark.

A hard-fought win over Paraguay saw them reach the quarter-finals, where they beat Italy after penalties.

They then dismissed Croatia in the semi-finals to set up a showpiece with Brazil at the Stade de France.

Zinedine Zidane then led his team the way with a fantastic brace to help France to an impressive 3-0 win.

But who made up the French starting XI that day and what has happened to them since?

  • Fabien-Alain-Barthez

    Fabien Barthez

    The goalkeeper made 87 appearances for France throughout his career and apart from winning the World Cup in 1998, he also won Euro 2000.

    He played for Monaco for most of his club career, but will more widely be recognised for his spell with Manchester United.

    After his retirement from football in April 2007, he took to motor racing and has even participated in the Le Mans 24-hour race on a number of occasions.

  • Lilian Thuram France

    Lilian Thuram

    Thuram was France No.1 choice at right back and made 142 appearances for France, before retiring from professional football in 2008.

    The defender will forever be remembered for his brace in the semi-final against Croatia.

    He is currently a social activist and fights for equality through the Lillian Thuram Foundation.

    Thuram has also authored a book called 'White Thinking' which was published in October 2021.

  • Leboeuf

    Franck Leboeuf

    The centre-back played for France between 1995 and 2002, making 50 international appearances and scoring four goals.

    He spent most of his club career at Strasbourg and also played for Chelsea.

    He is currently working as a commentator and analyst.

    Leboeuf has also acted in several plays in France and even featured in movies. He played the role of a doctor in Stephen Hawking's biopic The Theory of Everything.

  • Desailly

    Marcel Desailly

    Desailly is regarded as one of the best centre-backs in the history of French football.

    He made 166 appearances for France in a career spanning over a decade from 1993-2004.

    The defender was famously sent off in the 68th minute of the final against Brazil after being shown two yellow cards.

    After his retirement from football in 2006, he became a football pundit, while he is also involved in a lot of charity work in Ghana and serves as the UNICEF National Goodwill Ambassador.

  • e554d2eb608d37576d0b1e934c68465629fb657f

    Bixente Lizarazu

    The left-back was a key figure in the French dressing room and won four trophies with Les Bleus, the 1998 World Cup, Euro 2000 and the 2001 and 2003 Confederation Cups.

    Lizarazu made 97 appearances for France and played over 500 club games, most famously for Bayern Munich.

    After his retirement in 2006, he became a European champion in Jiu Jitsu, winning in the Blue Belt Senior 1 Light Division. He is still into martial arts along with being a scuba diver and cyclist.

    Lizarazu also occasionally works as a TV pundit.

  • Didier Deschamps France

    Didier Deschamps

    Deschamps was the skipper of the World Cup winning team and made 103 appearances for France, enjoying an equally illustrious playing career at club level at leading European clubs like Juventus and Chelsea.

    He is currently the France national team coach and led them to World Cup glory in 2018, becoming one of the few people to have won the World Cup as a player and also as a coach.

  • Christian Karembeu Roberto Carlos France Brazil World Cup 1998 07121998

    Christian Karembeu

    The versatile midfielder made 53 appearances for France over the course of his career and most noticeably played for Real Madrid at club level, winning two UEFA Champions League titles in 1997-98 and 1999-00.

    After his retirement in 2006, he has worked as a TV pundit.

    Karembeu is also a member of the 'Champions for Peace' club, a group of 54 elite athletes committed to serving peace in the world through sport.

  • Emmanuel Petit

    Emmanuel Petit

    Petit played a key role in midfield alongside Zidane in the final against Brazil.

    He was the set-piece taker for France and it was his corner that led to the opening goal, before he scored the third goal for France himself after latching on to a ball by Patrick Vieira.

    The former Arsenal man is currently working as a football pundit for various media organisations.


    Zinedine Zidane

    Zidane was the star of the final against Brazil as his two headed goals in the first half put France in the driving seat. He was simply unstoppable in midfield and was crucial in dictating proceedings.

    He played 108 matches in his international career, while enjoying plenty of success at club level with Juventus and Real Madrid.

    Zidane had a wonderful spell as Real Madrid coach and is the only manager in the world to have won the Champions League in three consecutive years.

    He is currently on a sabbatical after leaving the position of Real Madrid's head coach in 2021.

  • Youri Djorkaeff Leomar France Brazil Confederations Cup 2001

    Youri Djorkaeff

    Djorkaeff played 82 times for Les Bleus and scored 28 goals in the process.

    He spent most of his playing career in Monaco, but won the UEFA Cup with Inter Milan in 1997-98.

    He retired from football in 2006 and currently appears in various football shows.

  • Stephane Guivarc'h 28011998

    Stephane Guivarc'h

    The forward made only 14 appearances for France in his career, but was their main man op top at the 1998 World Cup.

    He retired from football in 2002 and returned to his village in France and started fishing.

    Guivarc'h currently works for a company owned by a friend that sells swimming pools.

  • Patrick Vieira France

    Patrick Vieira (Substitute)

    The French midfielder assisted France's third goal in the final after being brought on in the final quarter of the match.

    He made 107 appearances for France and scored six goals.

    Vieira played for the likes of Juventus, Arsenal and Inter during an illustrious club career.

    He is currently the manager of Premier League side Crystal Palace.

  • Alain Boghossian

    Alain Boghossian (Substitute)

    The midfielder had a short stint with the French national team and made 26 appearances for them.

    He retired in 2003 from professional football after completing the 2002-03 season with Espanyol.

    Boghossian also worked as an assistant coach to former manager Raymond Domenech in the France national team.

  • Cristophe Dugarry ex Barcelona player

    Christophe Dugarry (Substitute)

    The forward made 55 appearances for France and scored eight goals.

    He retired from football in 2005 after playing for several high profile clubs like Barcelona, AC Milan and Marseille.

    He currently works as a football pundit in various media channels and regularly makes headlines for his outrageous statements on various footballing personalities.