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Home   /   Flashback LIVE BLOG: France vs Brazil, 1998 World Cup final

This match report is being presented to you by Oscar Pour, minute by minute on the most anticipated game of the year at the Stade de France. Ronaldo vs Zidane, Yellow vs Blue, who will come out victorious…

The lead up to kick off has not been short of controversy, with the initial line-up being altered on Brazils’ end following a late entry to the team sheet from Ronaldo Nazario. Numerous reports suggested he had been taken ill a day prior to the final, however he will now feature, much to many people’s suspicion.

How Brazil line-up.

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How France line-up.

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Match has kicked off.

1′- Foul by Leonardo on the half-way line. An emphatic start made by Brazil.

2′- Brazil entertain possession in the final third hoping to entertain the first sight of goal in the game.

3′- Chance for Guivarc’h, saved by Taffarel. It’s France who draw their first hand, much to Taffarel’s comfort who can now retain possession for Brazil.

4′- Handball given away by Leboeuf, the referee does not further punish the player with a booking.

5′- Leonardo heads an effort off target following pressure induced by Lizarazu. Experienced defending from the French left back.

6′- Foul committed by Cafu on Lizarazu in the attacking half, much of the game seeing both sides utilise the full-backs.

6′- Free kick leading to an effort off target by Desailly, the defender rose above everyone else but could not measure his effort to trouble Taffarel.

7′- Foul given away against Leboeuf, his second offence of the game in just seven minutes played.

8′- Foul given away by Roberto Carlos on Thuram

9′- Balled crossed in by Petit, cleared by Aldair

10′- Contested possession, motion of play primarily taking place on the second-third of the pitch

11′- Attempt by Cafu to take on Lizarazu on the flank, well countered by the French number 3

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12′- Possession starting to see the feet of Brazil more and more as the game has settled in

13′- France looking unflustered by the occasion, keeping the ball adequately and not forcing any attacks

14′- Foul given away by Leboeuf, the third offence he has commited in the first third of the half

15′- Ronaldo’s first real involvement in the game, proving to be a useless one having being possessed by Deschamps

15′- Tensions starting to rise in the game, particularly witnessed on the battle presented by Cafu and Lizarazu where a large portion of both team’s offensive capabilities have unfolded. Regardless of the fact, possession remains being equally split by both sides with a slightly more passive approach being induced to the start of the game.

17′- A strike by Karembeu sees his effort drift wide of the post

18′- Brazil keeping hold of the ball in their half of the pitch, waiting for a mistake from France to occur

19′- Thuram’s streamline run sees his cross into the box wasted by the efforts of Zidane and Guivarc’h

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21′- Ronaldo attacks the left flank, providing a dangerous ball into the box which is dealt with unconvincingly by Barthez. The Brazilian superstar has started to find his feet progressively as the game’s gone on

23′- Corner to Brazil following Cafu’s cross being deflected

24′- CHANCE – Corner by Brazil sees the first attempt on target by Baiano saved by Barthez

26′- Thuram has been the main source of outlet on the behalf of France, providing his speed and power to the benefit of the team

27′- GOAL GOAL GOAL GOAL – Zidane strikes in a header following a corner whipped in by Petit. Zidane barely had to lift his feet off the ground to make contact with the ball, instead using the pace of the ball to powerfully guide his effort into the net. 1-0 France, who will feel rightfully ahead after a convincing start to proceedings.

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28′- Brazil intend on responding with sharpish efforts, attacking the right flank which has seen Cafu provide most of the attacking prowess on Brazil’s side.

29′- Handball given away by Karembeu following a nice bit of skill by Rivaldo

30′- The match has seen a significant rise in intensity following France’s opener, much to the pleasure of the crowd. The final third of the half looks to be a very interesting one.

31′- Ronaldo has taken an unpleasant tumble following a collision with Barthez. The Brazilian forward plays on, although looking dazed by the challenge.

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33′- YELLOW CARD – Baiano has seen the first booking been given to him following the disruption of play after Deschamps looked to set France through on goal.

34′- Zidane delighting the crowd with his dazzling feet, bamboozling the attempts of Brazil’s defensive capabilities

35′ – Foul given away by Desailly on Cafu just over the half way-line on Brazil’s front

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36′- Pressure from Brazil starting to mount with just under 10 minutes left of the first half

37′- YELLOW CARD – Deschamps sees the second yellow of the game following a late tackle

38′- Deschamps has gone down injured following a nasty challenge, the captain has stayed down consequently seeing play stopped

39′- Save by Barthez following Bebeto’s effort

40′- CHANCE – France come inches to their second following an effort from Petit’s right foot blocked by Bainao. Unseen by the referee, a goal kick is given.

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43′- The final minutes of the first half have come into the favour of France, who are dictating play at their own pace much to the frustration of Brazil. Questions are being raised on how this match would have faired if it was not for an unfit Ronaldo

44′- CHANCE – France see another effort saved by Taffarel after Guivarc’h finds himself essentially one on one with the keeper, a tame effort sees the ball go out for a corner

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45′- GOAL GOAL – IT FEELS LIKE DEJA VU – Moments into stoppage time and Zidane gets his brace following another header off a corner. Brazil have been shell-shocked! What a performance from France’s number 10.


45′- Second half has kicked off

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46′- YELLOW CARD – Desailly is carded following a cynical tackle

48′- Foul given away by Brazil in France’s first third of the pitch

49′- The crowd sees a fine mix of emotions following the introduction of Thiery Henry, who has started warming up. The very final thing the back line of Brazil would want to see at this moment in time.

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53′- Appeals from Brazil for a penalty following a challenge on Cafu by Barthez

55′- YELLOW CARD – Karembeu is shown a yellow for a late tackle.

56′- SUBSITUTION – The first change of the match is made on the behalf of France, who sees Karembeu replaced for Boghossian. The yellow card handed out just a minute earlier will have most likely played a factor towards the decision.

57′- Edging towards the final half-an-hour of the match and Brazil have as yet found no formula to unlock France’s defence. Time is ticking for the reigning world-champions to induce some sense of intent into this match. The fans are certainly not giving in.

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61′- CLEARED OFF THE LINE – Brazil come closer and closer to finding their first after Barthez aggressively comes off his line to claim a cross, in which Bebeto finds the ball at his feet however his effort cannot succeed the defensive awareness of Marcel Desailly

66′- SUBSITUTION – Guivarc’h is taken off for Dugarry, not the sharpest of performances for France’s number nine.

68′- RED CARD – The first sending off the game sees Marcel Desailly shown a second yellow after he naively makes an illegal challenge whilst Brazil are on the break. No option but for the referee to signal his first sending off in the game. Could this be fuel to the fire that Brazil have been longing for the entirety of the match.

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77′- Vieira blitzes down the left flank and finds a pass to Dugarry who keeps hold of possession, a pattern of play we have seen numerously tonight.

81′- Brazil losing composure by the minute as Leonardo is flagged for offside, despite the 10 men of France, a comeback for Brazil is starting to look highly unlikely

83′- CHANCE – A huge chance is squandered by Dugarry after Zidane maestros his way to find a highly enticing pass leaving the Dugarry one-on-one, however it is as though he had too much time. His effort is struck wide of the post. This final was just metres from being sealed off and parcelled to the nation of France.

87′- Zidane taking the situation to circus his talent to the world, he is playing like a kid at the park against the reigning champions


91′- OFF THE CROSS BAR BY BRAZIL – If there was any hope for a comeback, that was it. Denilson cleverly finds a way to pave a shot off on goal, only to be rejected by the framework. Unlucky.

93′- GOALLLLLLL – FRANCE HAVE TRIUMPHED TO VICTORY. A swift counter attack following Brazil’s final attempts at a goal has lead to Vieira threading through his midfield partner, Petit for a clinical finish. Brazil hang their heads in shame, already looking to 2002.


From the moment the ball was kicked off, it seemed there would only be one winner in this match with France displaying a composed dominance but who could have called such a result prior to kick off. The shear excellence of France will no doubt be overshadowed by the controversy of Ronaldo’s late call up however the reigning champions are nevertheless humiliated at the Stade De France.

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June 2024