Michel Platini claims 'trickery' over 1998 tournament draw

Annette Crawford
May 18, 2018

"A little trickery" was employed for the 1998 World Cup draw to ensure France and Brazil did not meet until the final, disgraced former Uefa president Michel Platini has claimed.

It meant that if the two teams finished top they would be on opposite sides of the draw for the knockout stage.

Platini was a co-president of the organising committee at France 98 and admitted the group allocations for seeded teams were made with an eye on a "dream" final.

"When we organized the calendar, we did a little trickery", Platini confessed in an interview with a French radio station.

The 62-year-old - who played for France and Juventus during his playing career - is now serving a four-year ban from involvement in football after he was found guilty of receiving a "disloyal payment" from then-FIFA president Sepp Blatter.

"We did not spend six boring years organising the World Cup to not have some little shenanigans". You think that the other hosts did not do it for their World Cups?

Regarded as the two best global teams in the world at the time, Brazil and France played each other in the final at Stade de France with the host nation running out 3-0 winners courtesy of Zinedine Zidane's double.

Federation Internationale de Football Association have long agreed that the host nation should be given a pre-draw seeding spot while the other seven seeds for the first 32-team tournament were allocated on a calculation mixing the world rankings with performances at the three previous World Cups. France-Brazil in the World Cup final, it was everyone's dream.

The 62-year-old has always maintained his innocence and in January it was reported he had taken the case to the European Court of Human Rights. France, the hosts, were then allocated to Group C - meaning if both seeded teams won their groups, they could not meet before the final.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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