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France may have conquered the world but PSG find Europe a little harder | Paul Doyle

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The European Cup was the brainchild of two French journalists but the nation which invented the competition has only enjoyed one controversial success, and that was 25 years ago

What jolly scenes those were in the Stade de France last week as Les Bleus’ World Cup-winning squad and 80,000 fans serenaded N’Golo Kanté, football’s most self-effacing superstar and, apparently, its most adorable card cheat. Yes, it’s been all whoops and giggles in France since Didier Deschamps’ team added a second gold star to the nation’s shirt this summer. But the return of the Champions League this week is a reminder of a sorrier facet of the country’s football history – its incorrigible haplessness in European club competition.

Related: Champions League is back with Manchester City unlikely favourites | Paul Wilson

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