France gives World Cup winners a heroes' welcome home

Demonstrators confront riot police during clashes on the Champs Elysees.

The French, though, are more enamored of the players, like 19-year-old star Kylian Mbappe, and of their coach, Didier Deschamps, with a parody photo circulating online suggesting renaming Paris' most famous avenue "Deschamps Elysees".

With the golden World Cup trophy in hand, France's victorious national team is returning home to a grand "Merci!" from a grateful nation that was sorely in need of a boost.

"We were anxious about the result because Croatia plays very aggressive football", said Sylvie Wahl, 55.

It has been 20 years since France won the World Cup.

The football world champions have returned to Paris to a heroes' reception with a huge crowd of fans lining the Champs-Elysees in red, white and blue to celebrate France's triumph at the Fifa World Cup in Russian Federation.

Very few attacking players truly announced themselves in France's first game one month ago, and the country was aching for a new soccer hero to announce himself.

France's soccer team touched down at Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris on Monday ahead of a victory parade down the Champs Elysees in front of crowds who queued to welcome the World Cup heros.

Certain acts of violence were also reported in several cities after France beat Croatia 4-2 in the final to win the tournament, said Le Parisien.

Shocking footage has been shared on social media showing fans kicking off in central Paris last night, where there were reports of looting and fans clashing with police.

Michel Delpuech, the chief of the Paris Police Prefecture, said in a news conference on Monday morning that a majority of those arrested were celebrating along the Champs Elysees, with 90 of them remaining in custody. "They stole alcohol, including champagne, but also lots of jewellery".

Revellers set off smoke bombs in the national colours - blue, white and red - obscuring Napoleon's triumphal arch as officers tackled the crowd using water canons.

'That's not how you celebrate, ' a tearful bystander wearing a French team jersey said.

As many as a million people had been enjoying the "good-natured atmosphere" at an event on the Champs-Élysées in Paris following France's 4-2 win against Croatia, which ministers had hoped would bring a "great moment" of "national unity".

  • Angelo Rivera