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Football coach Michel Hidalgo, who led France to glory at Euro 1984, dies at 87

Michel Hidalgo, carried by several France players, holds aloft the European Championship trophy after their 2-0 win over Spain in the final in 1984.
Michel Hidalgo, carried by several France players, holds aloft the European Championship trophy after their 2-0 win over Spain in the final in 1984. © AFP

Michel Hidalgo, who died on Thursday aged 87, will forever be remembered in France as the manager who led Les Bleus to their first major trophy at the European championship in 1984.

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The former player and manager died in the southern city of Marseille after a long battle with an unspecified illness, according to French media reports.

Hidalgo scored 74 goals over 14-year career playing at right-back and then as a defensive midfielder for AS Monaco, Reims and Le Havre.

In perhaps the highlight of his club career, he was part of the Reims team that came second to Di Stefano’s mighty Real Madrid in the 1955 European Cup final.

But it was as a manager that Hidalgo would leave his mark, coaching Les Bleus for eight years and leading a nation starved of success to European glory in 1984.

A creative manager, he was credited with building a forward-minded team centred on its "magic quartet" of Platini, Giresse, Tigana and Genghini.

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