WORLD CUP FINAL

France-Croatia: a final of contrasts

France-Croatia: a final of contrasts

FIFA

FIFA via Getty Images

The similarities between Sunday's World Cup finalists are few and far between, starting with a match-up between one of the favourites and a surprise package.

Sunday's World Cup final between France and Croatia is a final of contrasts on and off the pitch. For starters, Deschamps' side was one of the pre-tournament favourites, while Crotia, despite boasting one of the finest midfields, have been a surprise package. The bookies give France a slight edge, but given Croatia's battle-hardened march to the final no one is writing them off. Below is a comparison between both nations.   

Population

France has a population of 67.1 million and ranks number 22 on the list of countries by population. Croatia has 4.1 million inhabitants, and ranks 130 on the list. To put that into perspective, the population of France is more than 16 times bigger. 

Trophies

France won their first World Cup in 1998 on home soil and were runners-up in 2006, which means they will be playing in their third final. Les Bleus have also won two European Championships and two Confederation Cups. Croatia, meanwhile, were World Cup semi-finalists in 1998 and have never reached a final.  

Clubs

There are almost 14 times the number of registered clubs between both countries: in France there are 20,062 and 1,464 clubs in Croatia.

Market value

The France side has a market value of 1 billion euros and its two stars, Mbappé and Griezmann, are worth 120 and 100 million, respectively. Croatia's side is worth 354 million, with Rakitic currently their most expensive player after his €50-million move the Barcelona.

Economy

France has one of the strongest economies in the world, with a GDP per capita of 36,854 US dollars, while Croatia's economy is growing, with a GDP per capita of 12,090 US dollars. 

Liga

Ligue 1 is one of the strongest leagues in the world and led by the wealth and power of PSG. Eight of France's 23-man squad play in France. By contrast, Croatia only have two players - Bradaric and Livakovic - in their squad who play domestic football in Croatia.

Background

France played their first game in 1904 against Belgium. Since then they have played just under 850 internationals. Croatia played their first in 1940 and were recognised as an independent republic by both FIFA and UEFA. In total they have played some 300 games.

World Cups

France have taken part in 15 World Cups, only missing out in 1950, 1962, 1970, 1974, 1990 and 1994. Croatia have only played in five tournaments, in 1998, 2002, 2006, 2014 and 2018.

Coaches

Didier Deschamps is an institution in French football, captaining his country to World Cup success in 1998. He has also manages Monaco, Juventus and Marseille. Dalic, meanwhile, has had a much more low-key career, and was brought in during the qualificaiton play-offs.

FIFA ranking

France currently lie seventh in the FIFA rankings, and were number one between May 2001 and May 2002. Croatia are currently 20th, with their highest position coming in 1999 when they reached third.   

Mundial

Table PTS W D L
1Francia 7 2 1 0
2Dinamarca 5 1 2 0
3Perú 3 1 0 2
Full standing
Next matches
Francia - Croacia D-15/07 17:00
Fixtures

*Update 14 de julio de 2018

Mundial

Table PTS W D L
1Croacia 9 3 0 0
2Argentina 4 1 1 1
3Nigeria 3 1 0 2
Full standing
Next matches
Francia - Croacia D-15/07 17:00
Fixtures

*Update 14 de julio de 2018

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