24 years later, Slaven Bilic turns the knife in Laurent Blanc’s wound

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Those who experienced the scene live necessarily remember the expulsion of Laurent Blanc in the 74th minute of the semi-final of the 98 World Cup. Roughly surrounded by Slaven Bilic on a set piece, the President had replied by a gesture of humor in the face of the Croatian defender, who had made crates of it. Direct red card and no final for the OM defender. A drama for four days, until Frank Lebœuf replaced him magnificently against Brazil (3-0). For years, the people of France resented Bilic, who has already apologized. And who started again in the columns of FourFourTwo.

« I spoke with him several times. When I was Croatia coach, he was France’s coach. With the World Cup in Russia, France celebrated 20 years of their victory and had organized a match against the Rest of the World. He had called me a few weeks earlier to find out if I wanted to join, I had answered yes and spent three very pleasant days in their company. Do I regret it? I have already answered many times. I definitely wish that hadn’t happened. I wish he’d played the final, it wasn’t my intention to get him sent off. I just wanted to protect myself and upon that action, I did nothing wrong. He was the one who punched me in the face. I’m sorry because he’s a nice person but I don’t blame myself for what I did. If I could come back in back, maybe I’ll go to the ref and tell him not to send him off. But we were disgusted to lose. Nobody expected us to go that far. i far, we were one step away from the final, we had opened the scoring before Thuram scored twice… »

to summarize

Former Croatian defender Slaven Bilic, who had Laurent Blanc expelled after accentuating a bad gesture from the Frenchman in the semi-finals of the 98 World Cup, returned to this sad episode. And atoned for his attitude.

Raphael Nouet

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