Concept

France national rugby union team

Summary
The France national rugby union team (Équipe de France de rugby) represents France in men's international rugby union matches. Governed by the French Rugby Federation (FFR; Fédération française de rugby) and colloquially known as Le XV de France (French for "The XV of France"), the team traditionally wears blue shirts with a Gallic rooster embroidered on the chest, white shorts and red socks in reference to the French national flag. Les Bleus (French for "The Blues") mostly play home matches at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, near Paris. They compete in the annual Six Nations Championship along with England, Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales. France have won the tournament on 26 occasions (as well as sharing 8 victories), winning the Grand Slam 10 times. Rugby was introduced to France in 1872 by the British before a first French national squad was formed in 1893 (as a selection of the best Parisian-club players under the USFSA governance) to face a club in England. A few years later, on New Year's Day 1906, the national side played its first test match against New Zealand in Paris. France then played sporadically against the Home Nations until they joined them in 1910 to form the Five Nations Championship. France also competed in the rugby competitions at early Summer Olympics, winning the gold medal in 1900 and two silver medals in the 1920s. The national team came of age during the 1950s and 1960s, winning their first Five Nations title outright in 1959. They won their first Grand Slam in 1968. Their last win in the tournament dates back to 2022 under head coach and former team-captain Fabien Galthié, who is currently in charge of the selection. France has competed in every Rugby World Cup since it began in 1987, and qualified for the knock-out stage each time. They have reached the final three times, losing to New Zealand in 1987 and 2011, and to Australia in 1999. France hosted the 2007 Rugby World Cup, where, as in 2003, they were beaten in the semi-finals by England, and will once again host the tournament in 2023.
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