Best result: Winners (1984, 2000)
Coach: Didier Deschamps
Leading scorer: all time – Thierry Henry (51); current – Karim Benzema (18)
Most appearances: all time – Lilian Thuram (142); current – Franck Ribéry (80)
Association formed: 1919
Nickname: Les Bleus (The Blues)
Where they play: Stade de France, Saint-Denis
Les Bleus have a happy habit of fulfilling expectations on home soil. They won the 1984 UEFA European Championship, when Michel Platini drove them to victory with a record-breaking final tournament haul of nine goals, and claimed the FIFA World Cup for the one and only time in 1998 when another famous No10, Zinédine Zidane, inspired them to victory with two goals in the final against Brazil (3-0). Also winners at UEFA EURO 2000, and World Cup runners-up to Italy in 2006, France have struggled to make the same impact at recent major tournaments, falling at the group stage in 2008 and 2010 and exiting in the quarter-finals of UEFA EURO 2012.
Overall: P134 W74 D34 L26 F255 A124
Final tournament: P32 W15 D8 L9 F49 A39
Qualifying: P102 W59 D26 L17 F206 A85
France have been ever present in the EURO finals since missing out in 1988, an early end to the defence of the trophy they had lifted on home turf four years earlier. Their second victory came at UEFA EURO 2000, Roger Lemerre's side becoming only the second team after West Germany (1972, 1974) to hold the world and European titles at the same time.
It was a close-run thing. Zidane's extra-time penalty settled a tense semi-final against Portugal before Sylvain Wiltord saved them from a showpiece loss to Italy with a last-gasp equaliser, setting the scene for David Trezeguet's golden-goal winner. Automatic qualifiers as hosts, France will attempt to join Spain on three EURO titles in 2016, having suffered a 2-0 defeat by La Roja in the UEFA EURO 2012 quarter-finals.
Memorable EURO matches
02/07/2000: France 2-1 Italy (aet), UEFA EURO 2000 final
A breathtaking comeback was capped by Trezeguet's first-time finish, a golden-goal decider.
27/06/1984: France 2-0 Spain, 1984 UEFA European Championship final
Platini's ninth goal of the finals set the hosts on the way to their first major trophy.
23/06/1984: France 3-2 Portugal (aet), 1984 UEFA European Championship semi-final
With a penalty shoot-out looming, Platini struck the decisive blow in a thrilling match.
Did you know?
France are the only country apart from Germany (three) and Spain (two) to have won the UEFA European Championship more than once.
*Last updated 07/01/14
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