France team, what did you do with your romanticism?

When Germany stands in front of the Blues (like this June 15 in Munich for its entry into Euro 2021 football), nostalgia quickly emerges. Basically, some never recovered from Seville 1982. But did they want it elsewhere? Even if we put them in a time machine, they wouldn’t change a comma to that World Cup semi-final elimination.

Starting with one of the protagonists. The story is too beautiful, too cruel, too well told to merit any revisiting. Today in his sixties, Michel Platini keeps a little in him of this lanky young man wandering shirtless on the lawn of the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan stadium. “No film, no book, no play can make you experience a moment like this. You feel all the possible emotions, entrusted the former no 10 of the Blues in 2013 to So Foot. And in addition, it ends badly, so there, it is downright the apogee of romanticism! “

Michel Platini and the players of the France team prepare for the penalty shoot-out against FRG (West Germany), July 8, 1982, in Seville, during the 1982 World Cup in Spain.
Read also France-Germany: in Seville, we learned about immorality

The word is out. Romantic, French football was. Would he have become pragmatic by weaving world champion stars on his jersey? “Eternal romantic”, Christian Montaignac sets the ideological backdrop: “It is about the old debate of the years 1960-1970, that between the style or the result for the result; on one side, the Football mirror [ancien mensuel français] by François Thébaud, and on the other, Jacques Ferran and The team. This thought eventually won out in France. Deschamps is necessarily right because he won ”, sighs the former reporter at The team, present in Seville on July 8, 1982.

“We were romantic because we weren’t winning”

Sporting defeat, but moral victory over unforgettable Germans in the role of the wicked without remorse, the meeting inspired in Montaignac this ethnological consideration four days later:

“There is an aesthetic trend that the French are carrying: literature and cinema are the most legible proofs. For us impressionism and intimism, for others the economy of gestures and means. “

Upon rereading, the journalist becomes final: “We were romantic because we didn’t win. The image of the French who sacrifices aesthetics belongs to the past even if we would like to think the opposite. ” If the winner writes history, the loser prints the legend. At least, we do it for him.

“Are you going to have to tell me in what sense we were romantic?” In 1982, I was, but I was no longer in 1984 with our victory at the Euro ”, however, notes Alain Giresse, the former midfielder of the Blues. “Romanticism, what is it? To play ball well, to be carried on a game of creation and intelligence? It is not a defect ”, develops the one who, by his modest size (1.62 m) and his immense playing intelligence, embodied a certain French ideal.

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