Hopeful fans gather in Paris, willing 'Les Bleus' to World Cup victory

Paola Ditto
Luglio 15, 2018

France forward Antoine Griezmann said winning the World Cup against Croatia on Sunday was more important than how his team do it.

France have shut out all the euphoria back home over their run to the World Cup final in order to play a flawless match against Croatia on Sunday, France captain Hugo Lloris said.

"He has proved it once again at the World Cup, but I don't have a special relationship with him".

Mbappe, after a relatively quiet quarter-final performance against Uruguay by his high standards, went on to cause Belgium real problems in a 1-0 last-four win in St Petersburg, executing a remarkable piece of skill to play in Olivier Giroud after the interval. The England captain scored three of his tournament-leading six goals from penalties and two shortly after corner kicks, leaving just a single deflected goal from open play. It's on the shirt, but I did not win it. I pay more attention to the young players.

"If I score, then that´s great, but I am more a player who thinks of the team than of scoring". What they have achieved have made them revered and world Cup win will certainly be an icing on the cake. France have found the balance of the team and the best form exactly when they need it.

Players like forward Kylian Mbappe, the teen sensation who has lit up the World Cup, have led that change. We don't say it enough: "We live well in France, we eat well, it's a lovely country", star striker Antoine Griezmann reminded his compatriots on Friday. His picture graced most newspapers on Sunday as French hopes soar that they can bring the World Cup home for a second time. "This team deserves to reach the final, just like us".

The former Marseille boss came into the Russia World Cup with his position in question, with Zinedine Zidane and Arsene Wenger becoming available at the end of the 2017-18 domestic season.

One of the biggest TV screens imaginable - 140 square metres (1,500 square feet) and adapted to be watched in broad daylight - has been installed at the foot of the tower, with several others arranged to the sides around a vast green space.

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