French 1998 football World Cup champions to play friendly in Vietnam

By Hoang Nguyen   August 26, 2020 | 07:09 pm PT
French 1998 football World Cup champions to play friendly in Vietnam
The France squad celebrate their World Cup victory at the Stade de France in 1998. Photo by Reuters/Ian Waldie.
Members of the 1998 World Cup winning team would be among former French footballers to play a friendly match in Vietnam next year.

This was a sport cooperation project that the French ambassador to Vietnam, Nicolas Warnery, presented to Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Ngoc Thien in Hanoi on Tuesday.

The team would comprise many former world-class players including World Cup champions like Didier Deschamps, Laurent Blanc, Fabien Barthez, Christian Karembeu, and Marcel Desailly, he said.

Michel Platini, former FIFA president and thrice winner of the Ballon d’Or, awarded to Europe's top footballer, Euro 2000 champion Nicolas Anelka, former Manchester United player Patrice Evra and 1991 Ballon d’Or winner Jean-Pierre Papin would also be part of the squad.

Former Arsenal coach Arsène Wenger may play alongside the players. He has been to Vietnam once before when he came in 2013 with the English club.

Thien expressed his admiration for the beauty of French football and said Vietnamese sport, especially football, has developed and achieved impressive successes in recent years.

The national football team's focus is 2022 World Cup qualification.

The visiting French stars are also expected to take part in a seminar with Vietnamese spectators.

The visit has many goals, including developing diplomatic, cultural and economic relations between the two countries, promoting the image of Vietnam and supporting the development of Vietnamese football.

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