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20 April 2018

The Toulon Tournament’s most memorable moments : 1997, a French golden generation led by Henry, Trezeguet and Anelka (8/16)

Ahead of the 46th edition of the Toulon Tournament, which will be held from 26th May to 9th June, we’ve delved into the archives to relive some of the most memorable moments in the tournament history. Every Tuesday and Friday, we look back at the most thrilling facts provided by the competition. Today, we talk about the France's class of 97.

Talents, talents, and talents again ! The French team that played the Maurice Revello Tournament on 1997 was plentiful of talents, at all the positions. Thierry Henry, David Trezeguet, Nicolas Anelka, Willy Sagnol, William Gallas, Mikael Silvestre, Mickael Landreau or Ousmane Dabo : all these future internationals were part of Les Bleuets' squad.

Attractive on paper, this team justified its reputation on the pitch against nations which were not the weakest ones : Les Bleuets started the competition by a win over Croatia (1-0) in Stade des Costières (Nîmes) thanks to a goal by Nicolas Anelka. The following game, Thierry Henry permitted his side to get rid of Mexico (2-1) by scoring a brace.

In a perfect position, Gérard Houiller and his squad get a third victory in a row against Morocco (3-0) and ended their group stage campaign by another win against Netherlands (3-1) thanks to a brace from David Trezeguet and a goal by Nicolas Anelka.

With four wins in four games, France clinched the first spot of their group and qualified for the final. The last step for the French players before lifting the trophy was Portugal. Unbeaten as well, the Seleçao reached the final after earning for instance two victories against Czech Republic (3-0) and Colombia (1-0) in the previous round.

The final played in Stade Mayol (Toulon) was intense but both teams couldn't find the net during the first half. Despite an attacking trio Anelka-Trezeguet-Henry used by France, Portuguese were the first to hit thanks to Carlitos. But while everybody thought Lusitanians were going to win, Kodjou Afanou appeared before the end of the game and equalized for France. An extra-time is needed to know the winner of the 1997 edition. This is the moment chosen by Cédric Mouret, subbed on a few minutes ago, to score his only goal of the Tournament. A golden one...

READ ALSO :

The Toulon Tournament’s most memorable moments : 1975, the Argentina of Daniel Passarella clinched the title (1/16)

The Toulon Tournament’s most memorable moments : 1982, the emergence of the Koeman brothers (2/16)

The Toulon Tournament’s most memorable moments : 1983, an epic final between Argentina and Brazil (3/16)

The Toulon Tournament’s most memorable moments : when Jean-Pierre Papin left his mark on the Toulon Tournament’s history (4/16)
The Toulon Tournament’s most memorable moments : 1987, when Hristo Stoichkov helped Bulgaria to reach the final (5/16)

The Toulon Tournament’s most memorable moments : 1991, the Alan Shearer's legendary display (6/16)

The Toulon Tournament’s most memorable moments : 1995-1996, when David Beckham was making his first steps in the tournament (7/16)

Amayes Brahmi

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