After a stunning month of football in Russia, France skipper Hugo Lloris became the fourth goalkeeper to captain the World Cup winners.
The Tottenham Hotspur stopper lifted the famous trophy in Moscow following Les Bleues’ 4-2 victory over Croatia, claiming a second World Cup win for the French.
It was eight years since the last goalkeeper led his side to victory. In the competition’s 88-year history, only four goalies have become world champions wearing the captain’s armband.
The 31-year-old Juventus keeper – a five time title winner with the Old Lady, was considering retirement leading up to the tournament that was to be played on home soil. He was included in the Azzurri squad and after first-choice keeper Carlo Ceresoli broke his arm in training. Combi was then handed the no1 shirt, and captaincy. He played in all four games as Italy beat Czechoslovakia in the Final 2-1 after extra-time, and as captain, he received the Jules Rimet trophy from the Italian Dictator Benito Mussolini. He won 47 caps in total, 5 as captain, and passed away in 1956.
It was 48 years until another goalie skippered a World Cup-winning side, and it would be another Italian – the legadary Dino Zoff. Zoff had been the Azzurri’s undisputed no1 for ten years when, aged 40, he led his nation to the title in Spain. It also made him the oldest ever winner of the World Cup. During the tournament he kept two clean sheets on the way to Italy’s 3–1 Final victory over West Germany in Madrid. He was also voted as the Best Goalkeeper of the Tournament. Zoff made his 112th and last Italy appearance against Sweden a year later.
Spain’s most-capped player with 167 games under his belt for La Roja since his 2000 debut age just 19, Iker Casillas has won pretty much everything there is to win in the game. Both at club level for Real Madrid and current club Porto, and for his country, Casillas is a serial winner. In June 2008, he became the first goalkeeper-captain to lift the UEFA European Championship trophy when Spain beat Germany in the Final. Then, two years later, he skippered Spain to their first ever World Cup title with a 1–0 win against the Netherlands in Johannesburg. He was also awarded the tournament’s Golden Glove prize.
Tottenham skipper Lloris came close to following Casillas footsteps by almost lifting the European Championship followed by the World Cup. Though France missed out on Euro 2016 glory in their own country, losing to Portugal in the Final, they made up for it in Russia. The best team in the tournament ran out 4-2 victors over Croatia, and despite a goalkeeping blunder for the Croatian’s second goal, France held out to claim their second World Cup win. Hugo Lloris became the fourth goalkeeper to captain the World Cup winners as he held aloft the trophy in Moscow.