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1998 FIFA World Cup

1998 World Cup

Introduction: 1998 World Cup

The 1998 FIFA World Cup has an air of mystery to this day regarding Ronaldo’s “blackout” episode. The four-time champion team would see the title slip through their hands in the face of an impeccable performance by the star player Zidane.

1998 Cup had 32 participating teams

Hosting for the second time, France hosted the 1998 World Cup with 10 stadiums in different cities. It would be the first time that the World Cup would have 32 participating teams. Among all the world champions, only Uruguay failed to qualify.

Croatia opens with surprising performance

Croatia had a great campaign in its first participation in World Cups. They managed to beat Germany and the Netherlands, beat the Romanian team and were only stopped by France. Even so, they finished in third place in the 98 World Cup.

Brazilian National Team in the 1998 World Cup

Four-time champion in the 94 World Cup, the Brazilian team had Romário cut out days before the start of the 1998 World Cup due to a calf injury. Thus, the players coached by Mario Jorge Lobo Zagallo started a fight for a spot in the team’s attack.

Brazil’s debut was not convincing, even though they beat Scotland 2-1. Rivaldo, Ronaldo and Bebeto guaranteed the three Brazilian goals in the victory over the Moroccan team. But coming into the match against Norway, the 2-1 defeat would shake the team’s unity, which began to exchange criticisms publicly.

In the semifinal, Taffarel shone again as he saved two penalty kicks for the Dutch team. With this, Brazil advanced to the final.

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Final of World Cup 98

The 1998 World Cup final had one of the most mysterious episodes involving the Brazilian team. Hours before the start of the title match against France, Ronaldo suffered a convulsion, but was cleared by doctors to play.

The press, however, reported that Ronaldo had pain in his ankle. Later, they informed that it had been a nervous breakdown, that he had “turned yellow”. In the end, this story was never very well understood.

But it is likely that this episode with Ronaldo affected the players’ concentration. Even with Edmundo ready to act in place of the striker, Ronaldo decided to enter. However, his behavior was strange and his game was apathetic. Thus, everything went wrong for the Brazilian team.

Zidane leads France to the title

France, with their star player Zinedine Zidane in their team, had a campaign of ups and downs all the way to the final. However, the team was focused and played high quality football. The French team beat Brazil 3-0 in a relatively easy game, since Ronaldo did not shine. Two goals were scored by Zidane, who was elected the best player of the tournament by the critics.

France won their first World Cup title in 1998. The French also ended their participation in the World Cup with the best attack and the best defense of the ’98 World Cup – a historic achievement accomplished at home.

World Cup Series:


search FIFA. 1962 search FIFA World Cup Chile. Available at: <>. Accessed on: 29/04/2018


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