Former French international Didier Deschamps was captain of the victorious French national football team of the “Golden Generation”, which won the FIFA World Cup in 1998 and the EURO trophy in 2000. After also doing well at the club level, Deschamps became the second football captain to win the UEFA Champions League, World Cup, and European Cup.
After retiring as a professional player in 2001, Didier Deschamps promptly began his coaching career with French Ligue 1 side Monaco. After a highly successful 9-year career managing various club teams across Europe, Deschamps was appointed coach of the French national team in July 2012. Having led the team to the quarter-finals of the 2014 World Cup and the final of Euro 2012, Didier Deschamps is looking to repeat his 1998 World Cup feat and lead an ambitious French team to the final of the 2018 World Cup in Moscow.
Didier Deschamps as a Player
Didier Claude Deschamps was born on 15 October 1968 in Bayonne, France. As a teenager, he played both rugby and football. While still at school, he started playing football as an amateur with Aviron Bayonnais, a club in his hometown of Bayonne. There he was discovered by F. C. Nantes scouts and in April 1983 he signed his first contract.
Didier Deschamps spent 2 years in the youth system of Nantes before making his league debut as a defensive midfielder in September 1985. The talented youngster spent 4 seasons with the senior national team of Nantes F. C., after which he moved to Olympique de Marseille in 1989. With Marseille, Deschamps won two consecutive Ligue 1 titles (1991 & 1992) and also helped the team to a historic Champions League title in 1993, the first and only ever won by a French team.
After conquering French football, Didier Deschamps took on a new challenge when he joined the Italian side Juventus in 1994. There he continued his winning streak, winning three Serie A titles in 1996, one Coppa Italia, two Italian Supercups, another Champions League title, a UEFA Super Cup, and an Intercontinental Cup. After a brilliant 5-year stint with the Italian club, Deschamps moved to English club Chelsea F.C., where he helped them win the FA Cup in 2000. Finally, he played his last season with Spanish La Liga club Valencia, helping them reach the UEFA Champions League final in 2001 when 32-year-old Didier Deschamps announced his retirement as a footballer.
At the international level, Didier Deschamps was first appointed to the French national team in April 1989. After failing to qualify for two successive World Cups (1990 and 1994) and coming to a sad end at Euro 1992, the entire squad underwent a major overhaul in the run-up to Euro 96. Fortunately, Deschamps was one of the few remaining veterans and was appointed captain of what is now known as the “golden generation” of French football. After leading the team to an impressive semi-final at Euro 96, Didier Deschamps was also named captain of France to win the 1998 World Cup on home soil. Deschamps, an exceptional leader, maintained this momentum as he led France to victory at Euro 2000 as captain. When he decided to leave France when the ovation was loudest, Didier Deschamps announced his retirement from international football at the end of the tournament.
Didier Deschamps Coaching Career
Didier Deschamps began his career as a football coach in 2001 as head coach of AS Monaco. During his four years with the club, Deschamps helped them win a Coupe de la Ligue title in 2003 and their first UEFA Champions League final in 2004 and returned to his former club Juventus at the start of the 2006/07 season after leaving Monaco in 2005. During his one-year tenure with Juve, Deschamps helped the club win the Italian Serie B title and return to the top flight of Italian football. After two seasons without a coaching position, Didier Deschamps moved to another former Olympique de Marseille club in May 2009. During his time in Marseille, Deschamps put an end to the club’s 17-year title shortfall and helped them to six titles in three years.
Following his impressive coaching career, Didier Deschamps was appointed head coach of the French national team on 8 July 2012. Under his leadership, the team has reached the quarter-finals of the 2014 World Cup, the final of Euro 2016, and the final of the 2018 World Cup, where Deschamps hopes to write even more history.
As in his outstanding professional career, Didier Deschamps also has good cards on the home front. The French-born football maestro is currently married to his almost three-decade-old wife Claude Deschamps. The couple met in 1986 when Didier’s career was in its infancy and Claude was studying speech therapy. The official covenant of marriage was made in 1989. A few years and several victories later, the couple is still together and is growing very strongly. It is a rather small family, as they have only one child together. The couple welcomed their first child in 1996, a son named Dylan.
Height and Other Body Measurement
Didier Deschamps stands at a height of 169 cm (5 feet 7 inches). The ex-French international has maintained a slender build with a bodyweight of 71 kg (157 lbs).