Just Fontaine

012. Just Fontaine

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Just Fontaine’s record 13 World Cup goals in 1958 included four in the third place play-off against West Germany, as France achieved their best-ever finish in the tournament. Fontaine, who was born at Marrakech in Morocco in 1933, began his career with Nice and won League and Cup winner’s medals before making his international debut against Hungary in October 1956.
Just Fontaine was in and out of the national team and won a place in Sweden only after an injury to Renè Biliard. But he combined with Raymond Kopa to provide one of the tournament’s most lethal strike forces and he scored in every game. Fontaine who scored 30 goals in 21 internationals, moved to Rheims shortly after his World Cup exploits and appeared for them in the 1959 European Cup final, when they lost to Raymond Kopa’s Real Madrid.
Just Fontaine career was cut short at the age of 27, when he broke a leg for a second time. He became president of the French Footballers’ Union and had a brief spell in charge of the national team and Paris St. Germain. Fontaine’s 13 goals remained an overall record until surpassed by Gerd Müller in 1974, although no man has bettered his tally in one tournament.
Fontaine is remembered for helping to form French player’s union the UNFP, becoming its first president in 1961.
Just Fontaine died on 1st March 2023 aged 89.

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Just Fontaine