Jamaica Gleaner / PARIS (AP):

France’s FIFA World Cup champions are sharing their win on the football field with hundreds of youths at the presidential Elysee Palace after getting a hero’s welcome home in Paris.

Following a victory lap down the packed Champs-Elysees Avenue in an open-air bus, the squad that defeated Croatia 4-2 in the tournament final on Sunday attended an informal garden party hosted by President Emmanuel Macron yesterday.

Team members sang off-the-cuff songs, and Macron told the crowd: “This team is beautiful because it was united.”

“Don’t change,” Macron said, adding: “Never forget where you come from.”

The diverse origins of France’s players attracted appreciation during the month-long World Cup. Many of the players grew up in the disadvantaged suburbs of Paris.

Youths from the home club of Kylian Mbappe, the 19-year-old breakout star from the Paris suburb of Bondy, were present at the victory party.


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