Only two countries have lifted the Jules Rimet trophy in consecutive World Cup tournaments. Italy won the World Cup in 1934 and 1938, beating Czechoslovakia and Hungary respectively.
Two decades later, Brazil did the double. The Seleção won the trophy in 1958 and 1962, getting the better of Sweden and Czechoslovakia, with a young Pelé running riot before collecting the Best Young Player Award in 1958.
France have played in two World Cup finals and won on both occasions, in 1998 and 2018. Les Bleus will be hoping to continue their winning run and lift back-to-back titles when they take on Argentina on Sunday.
France beat Croatia 2-1 in the semi-finals of France ‘98. Lilian Thuram scored a brace to send his country into the final, where they faced Brazil. Brazil knocked out the Netherlands on penalties in the other semi-final but couldn’t find a way past Les Bleus at the Stade de France. France ran out 3-0 winners thanks to a first-half brace from the brilliant Zinedine Zidane and a late Emmanuel Petit strike.
Twenty years later, France were in another World Cup final. This time it was against Croatia in Russia. A Samuel Umtiti goal against Belgium in the semi-finals gave the French a chance to add to their one World Cup triumph. Croatia beat England in their semi-final to set up a final with Didier Deschamps’ side.
In the 2018 final, Kylian Mbappé became the second teenager ever to score in a World Cup Final, following Pelé, who netted as a 17-year-old in 1958. Goals from Paul Pogba and forward Antoine Griezmann helped France lift the World Cup for a second time in a 4-2 win over Luka Modric and co.
France’s Paul Pogba holds the trophy as he celebrates winning the World Cup REUTERS/Dylan Martinez/DYLAN MARTINEZREUTERS
France take on Argentina in the 2022 World Cup final. Only three countries have won more World Cups than France; Brazil (5), Germany (4) and Italy (4) are the most successful World Cup teams. France and Argentina have enjoyed two World Cup triumphs and a third success on Sunday will see one of them move closer to the current top three.
BACK TO BACK WORLD CUP FINAL. 🇫🇷
— Kylian Mbappé (@KMbappe) December 14, 2022
Argentina’s last World Cup final came in 2014, when they were defeated by Germany. Mario Gotze scored the winner in extra time to deny the South Americans a third World Cup. Sunday’s final will be an intriguing affair. It’s much more than Lionel Messi versus Kylian Mbappé. It’s two football-mad nations coming together for the biggest prize in world football.