Six World Cup winners who are thought to be in their retirement or who said goodbye to the competition, are surprisingly making a comeback in Russia 2018.
Thierry Henry, France / Belgium
In 2018, one of the best strikers in history will once again appear at the FIFA World Cup, only this time he will be sat on the bench instead of performing on the pitch. Mr Henry won the World Cup in 1998 and competed at a further three tournaments, in 2002, 2006 and 2010. Now he is assistant manager of Roberto Martinez’s Belgium.
Miroslav Klose, Germany
The legendary German goal scorer ended his relationship with the World Cup on a high note in 2014: not only was he part of the team that lifted the trophy, he also broke the all-time record for goals scored at the tournament (16). After finishing his playing career in 2016, Mr Klose immediately joined Joachim Low’s coaching staff.
Didier Deschamps, France
The captain of France’s victorious World Cup campaign in 1998, Mr Deschamps replaced Laurent Blanc as coach in 2012 and led them to a runners-up spot at the UEFA EURO 2016 held on home soil. The World Cup in Russia will be his second as a coach, having guided France to the quarter-finals of Brazil 2014.
Aliou Cisse, Senegal
Senegal’s captain at their only prior appearance at the World Cup in 2002, when the Lions of Teranga made it to the quarter-finals, Mr Cisse began coaching his country’s youth teams in 2012. After working his way up the ladder, the former defender was appointed head coach of the senior team in 2015 and immediately led them to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Jon Dahl Tomasson, Denmark
The joint top-scorer in Danish football history with 52 goals, Mr Tomasson played at two World Cups, in 2002 and 2010, and managed five goals at the tournament in total. His performance in Korea Republic and Japan was particularly impressive, firing four goals in as many games. Mr Tomasson took over as head coach of Dutch side Roda JC Kerkrade for the 2013/14 season and accepted Age Hareide’s offer to join the Denmark coaching team in 2016.
Gareth Southgate, England
One of the most well-known English defenders of the late 1990s and early 2000s, Mr Southgate played three matches at the 1998 World Cup and was named in the squad for 2002 but did not feature. He ended his playing career at Middlesbrough before immediately moving into the manager’s role at that club. After learning his craft coaching England’s youth teams, he took charge of his first senior game on an interim basis following Sam Allardyce’s departure. Having made a good impression during the World Cup qualifiers, Southgate was offered the job permanently after four games in charge.