By Oluwatoyin Adeleye
After a gruelling and action-packed game, France defeated Croatia 4-2 to clinch the World Cup title in the 2018 FIFA World Cup competition.
Les Bleus took home the gold trophy as well as the $38 million in prize money, while Croatia took home $28 million in second place prize money.
Recall that in 2017, the FIFA Council announced that the organization’s total contributions to fund the 2018 World Cup would be a whopping $791 million — a 40 percent increase from the previous tournament in 2014. Of this total, $400 million will be used exclusively as prize money for participating teams — a 12 percent increase.
This increase in funding means that France is set to win more prize money than ever before in World Cup history.
France led 2-1 at halftime on Sunday after a Mario Mandzukic own-goal and an Antoine Griezmann VAR-penalty, although Ivan Perisic briefly brought first-time finalists Croatia level.
Quickfire strikes by Paul Pogba and Kylian Mbappe midway through the second half put France on course for the title, but Mandzukic was gifted a goal by French keeper Hugo Lloris to set up a nervous final 20 minutes.
France, however, withstood a spirited Croatia assault to lift the trophy for the second time – the first on foreign turf, following their success on home soil 20 years ago – and ensured that there was no repeat of two years ago when they were beaten in the European Championship final by Portugal in Paris.
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