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France 19



The 1998 FIFA World Cup, the sixteenth FIFA World Cup, was held in France from 10 June to 12 July 1998. France was chosen as host at the 48th FIFA Congress by FIFA Executive Committee in Zürich on 1 July 1992.

As was the case four years previously, Morocco were outbid to host the tournament, they accrued seven votes. France received the necessary majority of twelve votes. Switzerland were the third bidder but they failed to meet FIFA's necessary requirements.

The Draw

The 32 participating teams were divided into eight groups, one seeded, the remaining three geographical, in which all four teams play each other once, at a draw conducted at Stade Vélodrome in Marseille on 4 December 1997.

Seeded Europe Africa/CONCACAF South America/Asia
Brazil England Mexico Chile
France Norway Morocco Colombia
Germany Yugoslavia United States Japan
Italy Croatia Tunisia Korea Republic
Spain Denmark South Africa Paraguay
Argentina Austria Jamaica Saudi Arabia
Romania Bulgaria Cameroon Iran
Netherlands Belgium Nigeria

The winners and runners-up from each group advance to the knockout stage, where the Golden Goal rule applies, that is to say, the first team to score in extra-time wins the match.



The Build-Up

31 May: Glenn Hoddle announced his 22-man squad for the World Cup at their Spanish training camp in La Manga, following a tournament in Casablanca. Paul Gascoigne's omission was the big news.

9 June: The England squad flew from Heathrow to their French base near La Baule, in Brittany, stopping off at Caen to play a secretive warm-up game, a 1-0 victory against a local reserve side, before flying on to Saint-Nazaire.

"Travel and hotels are already booked for England's appearance in the final on July 12...
"That's not arrogance, that's just professionalism. You've got to make the players think that way. We won't be going to France with any fear. I also think we're better prepared than any England squad going into a finals." -
Glenn Hoddle, The Guardian

12 June: The players had a golf day, whilst Geoff Hurst was knighted in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.

14 June: The squad trained at the Stade Vélodrome in Marseille. Hoddle was giving nothing away as to his team selection, but reiterated that the World Cup was going to be about the whole squad and that there would be important roles for people coming off the bench.


First Phase Table
Group G
Team P W D L F A GD Pts
Romania 3 2 1 0 4 2 +2 7
England 3 2 0 1 5 2 +3 6
Colombia 3 1 0 2 1 3 -2 3
Tunisia 3 0 1 2 1 4 -3 1
15 June 1998 - both CEST
2:30pm - England 2 Tunisia 0 [1-0]
Stade Vélodrome, Marseille (54,587)
Shearer, Scholes
5:30pm - Romania 1 Colombia 0 [1-0]
Stade de Gerland, Lyon (37,572)

"...the calm, controlled manner of their victory...suggested there may be much more to come.
"...this victory has raised hopes that they can win the group and avoid Argentina in the second round.
"One swallow does not make a summer," Hoddle, the coach, said afterwards.
"...it is pretty calm in the dressing-room and we are already thinking and talking about the next game." - The Times, 16 June 1998

"Sol Campbell 9/10 - A magnificent first-half display...
"Paul Scholes 9/10 - A star in the making.
"Graeme Le Saux 9/10 - Possibly his best game for England." - Player Ratings, Daily Express, 16 June 1998

"England need worry no longer, they have found their new Paul Gascoigne in the shape of pocket dynamo and ginger spice, Paul Scholes.
"But overall, it was the best start England have made to a World Cup Finals since 1982 and the omens look good for the rest of the competition." - Shoot!

"We celebrated victory with quite a few drinks...of coke and orange that is!" - Gareth Southgate

22 June 1998 - both CEST
5:30pm - Colombia 1 Tunisia 0 [0-0]
Stade de la Mosson, Montpellier (35,500)
9:00pm - Romania 2 England 1 [0-0]
Stade Municipal, Toulouse
Moldovan, Petrescu

"Undone by two men who are regarded as little more than journeymen of the FA Carling Premiership...
"...heartbreaking but deserved defeat...
"England were clearly outplayed and outclassed for long periods of the game..." - The Times, 23 June

"Le Saux's lame last-ditch challenge on Petrescu which led to the decisive second Romanian goal. A half-hearted effort if ever there were one." - Shoot! Cock-up of the Match

"This was a crushing disappointment. The way we defended was a bitter pill to swallow and we handed them both goals on a plate. It only takes a split-second to lose a game like that, and although we are disappointed with the defeat, we can take confidence from the character we showed to get back into the game." - Glenn Hoddle

"Now Owen's scored, there's going to be only one winner here." - Kevin Keegan, on ITV

26 June 1998 - both 9:00pm CEST
Romania 1 Tunisia 1 [0-1]
Stade de France, Saint-Denis
Souayeh (pen)
Colombia 0 England 2 [0-2]
Stade Félix-Bollaert, Lens (41,275)
Anderton, Beckham

"...Beckham...ran the show from the heart of midfield...
"...Beckham...and Michael Owen...injected youth and optimism and urgency into a side that seemed to be stagnating.
"Suddenly...this seemed like a team that could score against anyone...
"I'm absolutely delighted with that performance," Hoddle said. "We really could have won by four or five goals..." - The Times, 27 June

"From wizened bar-room experts, to those who discovered the game when Gazza blubbed, and small boys not long out of short trousers, the message had been the same. Pick Owen and Beckham...and look what happened when he did." - Daily Express, 27 June

"It is no longer a question of David Beckham or Darren Anderton. Both are in the England side to stay judging by their five-star performances..." - Shoot!

The Second Phase

27 June 1998 - all CEST
4:30pm - Italy 1 Norway 0 [1-0]
Stade Vélodrome, Marseille (60,000)
9:00pm - Brazil 4 Chile 1 [3-0]
Parc des Princes, Paris (48,500)
César Sampaio (2), Ronaldo (2 (1 pen))
28 June 1998
4:30pm - France 1 Paraguay 0 [0-0] AET [0-0]
Stade Félix-Bollaert, Lens (41,275)
Blanc (golden goal)
9:00pm - Denmark 4 Nigeria 1 [2-0]
Stade de France, Saint-Denis (79,500)
Møller, B.Laudrup, Sand, Helveg
29 June 1998
4:30pm - Germany 2 Mexico 1 [0-0]
Stade de la Mosson, Montpellier(35,000)
Klinsmann, Bierhoff
9:00pm - Netherlands 2 Yugoslavia 1 [1-0]
Stade Municipal, Toulouse (37,500)
Bergkamp, Davids
30 June 1998
4:30pm - Croatia 1 Romania 0 [1-0]
Stade du Parc Lescure, Bordeaux (31,800)
Šuker (pen)
9:00pm - Argentina 2 England 2 [2-2]
[2-2] &
Penalties [4-3]
Stade Geoffroy-Guichard, Saint-Étienne (35,500)
Batistuta (pen), Zanetti
Shearer (pen), Owen
Penalty Shoot-out:- Berti 1-0, Shearer 1-1, Crespo saved, Ince saved, Verón 2-1, Merson 2-2, Gallardo 3-2, Owen 3-3, Ayala 4-3, Batty saved.

"It was the story of the weakness of one man and the almost superhuman strength of the ten he left behind. It was a story of defiance to the point of absolute inspiration. It was almost one of the greatest stories that English football has ever told, but, ultimately and most cruelly, it turned into a sickeningly familiar tale of heroic failure.
"...an epic that deserved a place at a later stage of the competition...
"...Paul Ince... played as if he was three men.
"...England would surely have won this match were it not for the stupidity of Beckham.
"What he did cost us dearly," Hoddle said. "We are all absolutely distraught, but we can be proud of the way the players performed tonight. They defended like lions, they gave it their all, and even when we were down to ten men we felt we might be able to threaten them at set-pieces."
"Argentina simply could not cope with the one-man bundle of energy, brilliance and deadliness in front of goal that Owen has become at just 18 years of age." - The Times, 1 July 1998

"Tony Adams 9/10 - What a man! Yet another rock solid display...
"Sol Campbell 9/10 - ...this man is a world class defender...
"Michael Owen 9/10 - ...with this man on board England can score against anybody." - Player Ratings, Daily Mirror

"You just wish that England could be lucky winners for a change. We might be getting used to enduring the pain of gallant defeats in major Championships, but it does not get any easier to take when the team arrive home hailed as heroes, yet without the silverware to match.
"It is no consolation that England took part in what will surely be the game of the tournament. The sort of World Cup classic that you would love to have sat in front of the television and enjoyed without a care who wins." - Shoot!

"If we had kept on 11 players I am sure we would have won that game. And if we had done that and beaten Argentina, who were one of the favourites, there would have been a real belief from everyone around the world that we could have gone all the way." - Glenn Hoddle

Round of sixteen

Quarter Finals

3 July 1998 - all CEST
4:30pm - France 0 Italy 0 [0-0]
[0-0] & Penalties [4-3]
Stade de France, Saint-Denis (77,000)
Penalty Shoot-out:- Zidane 1-0, R.Baggio 1-1, Lizarazu saved, Albertini saved, Trezeguet 2-1, Costacurta 2-2, Henry 3-2, Vieri 3-3, Blanc 4-3, Di Biagio crossbar.
9:00pm - Brazil 3 Denmark 2 [2-1]
Stade de la Beaujoire-Louis Fonteneau, Nantes (35,500)
Bebeto, Rivaldo (2)
Jørgensen, B.Laudrup
4 July 1998
4:30pm - Netherlands 2 Argentina 1 [1-1]
Stade Vélodrome, Marseille (55,000)
Kluivert, Bergkamp
Numan Ortega
9:00pm - Croatia 3 Germany 0 [1-0]
Stade de Gerland, Lyon (39,100)
Jarni, Vlaović, Šuker

Semi Finals

7 July 1998 - both 9:00pm CEST
Brazil 1 Netherlands 1 [0-0]
[1-1] & Penalties [4-2]
Stade Vélodrome, Marseille (54,000)
Penalty Shoot-out:- Ronaldo 1-0, F.de Boer 1-1, Rivaldo 2-1, Bergkamp 2-2, Emerson 3-2, Cocu saved, Dunga 4-2, R.de Boer saved.
8 July 1998
France 2 Croatia 1 [0-0]
Stade de France, Saint-Denis (76,000)
Thuram (2)


Third Place Play-off

11 July 1998 - 9:00pm CEST
Croatia 2 Netherlands 1 [2-1]
Parc des Princes, Paris (45,500)
Prosinecki, Šuker


The 1998 Final

12 July 1998 - 9:00pm CEST
France 3 Brazil 0 [2-0]
Stade de France, Saint-Denis (75,000)
Zidane (2), Petit