Zidane returns to inspire Les Blues

France 3 Ivory Coast 0

France 3 Ivory Coast 0

Zinedine Zidane celebrated his international return by scoring the second goal in France's impressive defeat of the Ivory Coast in a friendly in Montpellier, with Chelsea's William Gallas and Arsenal's Thierry Henry also on target.

Les Bleus have been in search of goals and attacking efficiency for the past year as the departure of several key internationals including Zidane and Lilian Thuram left a void in the national side.

But the return of Zidane, Thuram and Chelsea midfielder Claude Makelele certainly boosted French morale and resulted in a convincing performance less than a month before the start of their final four 2006 World Cup qualifiers.

Gallas opened the scoring after 28 minutes with his first international goal, heading in a corner from former Arsenal man Sylvain Wiltord.

Zidane tapped in at the start of the second half after more good work from Wiltord and Thierry Henry notched his 29th goal in the blue shirt four minutes later when he slotted home after a long run.

More in this section


Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox