World Cup winners head for the Élysée Palace

Paola Ditto
Luglio 17, 2018

The World Cup-winning French team returned home to a heroes' welcome on Monday as hundreds of thousands packed the Champs Elysees for their victory parade ahead of a presidential reception in the evening.

The diverse origins of France's players attracted appreciation during the month-long World Cup.

Smoke bombs surged from the crowd of tens of thousands on the avenue, casting a haze that at times obscured the team.

Didier Deschamps captained the team then, and 20 years on is manager.

France's Olivier Giroud, Hugo Lloris, French president Emmanuel Macron, France's Paul Pogba, Benjamin Pavard and other teammates at a reception for the French national football team after they won the Russian Federation 2018 World Cup.

More than 300,000 people filled the Champs Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe and Place de la Concorde on Sunday night.

A total of 292 people were taken into custody across France following countrywide celebrations for France's World Cup championship according to French daily Le Figaro citing the Interior Ministry.

Several Paris Metro stations were temporarily adjusting their names to honor the team and its members, the transport authority tweeted. The Champs-Elysees Clemenceau has become the Deschamps-Elysees Clemenceau to honour national team coach Didier Deschamps.

When Tottenham's Trippier scored a fantastic free-kick early in the semi-final against Croatia, Gareth Southgate's team appeared to be heading for their first World Cup final since 1966. The Victor Hugo station is now Victor Hugo Lloris, after France's standout goalie and team captain.

Joy over the victory brightened the Monday morning commute in Paris, with young people in cars still singing and shouting in celebration.

If Belgium had been able to field the suspended Meunier for their semi-final against France, the outcome might have been different, as France's players admitted themselves.

He is only the second teenager to score in a World Cup final after Pele in 1958.

Photographers captured French President Emmanuel Macron erupting in absolute glee celebrating his team's victory.

Deschamps, who was soaked in champagne by his overjoyed players at a chaotic press conference Sunday, said afterwards that the win was "just as big and just as beautiful" as his 1998 triumph.

Sports Minister Laura Flessel said on Europe-1 radio that the victory allows France's youth "to dare to believe in their dreams".

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