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France: Unusual flags seen in international football events

Last modified: 2018-08-04 by ivan sache
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FIFA World Cup 2018

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French World Cup flags - Images by Ivan Sache, 18 July 2018

A few French flags with defacement in the white stripe were spotted during the 2018 FIFA football World Cup.
The two most frequently seen designs were pushed by the French Football Federation to increase the people's support to the national team (translate, to increase the profits of the Federation by selling artifacts people do not need).
It is quite clear that the best way to show support for a national team is to use the matching national flag (I exclude here home-made or home-defaced flags). The TV images from Russia and France, as well as my personal observations in the fan zone set up in Versailles for the final, yield very few images of such "officially" defaced flags.

The first flag is defacedwith the stylized emblem of the FFF.
The second flag inscribed with "Fiers d'être bleus". The program "Proud to be blue" was launched by the FFF (website) to increase the support of sports clubs, schools and municipalities to the national team. This does not seem to have been so successful, since the official website where partners could register and download "communication kits" and "supporters kits" indicate only 2,748 registered clubs, and 7,829 downloads, as well as 256 registered towns and 749 schools "proud to be blue", and still indicates "32 days until the beginning of the competition"!).
The program was indeed launched on 2 March 2016, 100 days before the beginning of the 2016 UEFA Euro, and re-activated for the FIFA World Cup.
Oddly enough, the logo inscribed on the flag does not strictly match the logo of the program.

Ivan Sache, 18 July 2018


UEFA Euro 2016

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French Euro flag - Image by Ivan Sache, 11 April 2017

During the UEFA Euro 2016, organized in France from 10 June to 10 July 2016, a French national flag (90 cm x 60 cm) defaced in the white stripe with the logo of the event (photo, photo) was offered for sale at the official shop.

The logo was designed by Brandia Central, the Portuguese agency that already designed the logo of the UEFA Euro 2012. The logo combines several artistic movements and different elements connected to football. Different symbols can be identified around the emblematic Henri Delaunay trophy. The blue, white and red colours of the French flag are mixed with delicate lines and shapes to produce a modern and sober style conferring distinction and elegance to the logo.
[Official description]

The trophy is named for Henri Delaunay (1883-1955), first Secretary General of the French Football Federation (1919), French delegate at the FIFA Board (1924-1928), and first Secretary General of UEFA (1954-1955). Delaunay was one of the founders of the French Cup (1917) and campaigned with Jules Rimet for the creation of the World Cup (1930). His proposal of an European championship, tabled in 1927, was validated only after his death (1960). He was succeeded at UEFA by his son, Pierre Delaunay (1955-1960), who designed the trophy in classical style, as a tribute to his father.
The original trophy (6 kg, 42 cm in height) was made by the silversmith Adrien Chobillon - also the designer of the French Cup trophy - for the jeweller Arthus-Bertrand. The name of the winner was engraved on the base. Deemed too small by UEFA, the original trophy was replaced in 2008 by a brand new one of the same shape, produced by the Asprey jewellery in London. The new trophy weights 8 kg and is 60 cm in height; while its base was increased in width for the sake of stability, the name of the winner is engraved on its back side.
[UEFA website]

Ivan Sache, 11 April 2017


FIFA World Cup 2010

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Flag installation, August 2010 - Image by Ivan Sache, 8 August 2010

There is nothing to add on the fiasco of the French national team during the football FIFA World Cup organized in South Africa in June-July 2010.
A flag display set up near Lamballe (Brittany), along the Rennes-Brest speedway, summarized quite well the general impression of disgust and shame following the brilliant campaign. The flags of the four nations competing in Group A (South Africa, France, Mexico, Uruguay) were displayed in a line, with the French flag half-staffed.

Ivan Sache, 8 August 2010


FIFA World Cup 2002

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French-Korean flag - Image by Antonio Martins & Željko Heimer, 7 June 2002

A photo published by Yahoo France on 6 June 2002 shows a huge French Tricolore flag with the Korean national symbol added in the middle of the white stripe. The photo lust have been taken that day in Pusan, where France played against Uruguay.

Ivan Sache, 7 June 2002


UEFA Euro 1984

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Franch flag with Moor's head - Image by Ivan Sache & Pierre Gay, 31 July 1999

A French national flag defaced with a Corsican Moor's head was used by a supporter during the France-Portugal semi-final, played in Marseilles on 23 June. The flag might have been used by a member of the large Corsican community in Marseilles, to present himself as a Corsican supporter of the French national team.

Ivan Sache, 31 July 1999