Michel Platini was one of football's great maestros, and to this day holds a special place in the affections of fans of France and Juventus in particular. One of the world’s true stars in the 1970s and 1980s, he was named his country’s best player of the 20th century by respected journal France Football, beating both Zinedine Zidane and Raymond Kopa to the prestigious award.
In our Video of the Week, FIFA.com presents a tribute to the gifted midfielder, who was born in Joeuf in June 1955 and learned the basics of the game with local club AS Joeuf. He started out as a pro in 1973 with AS Nancy, where his father Aldo spent a lengthy period as director of sport. The player collected his first major honour in 1978 when the club from Lorraine won the French Cup, before Platini upped sticks and switched to Saint-Etienne.
In a three-year stay in the industrial city in eastern central France, he rose to become one of the most admired playmakers in the global game. Indeed, Platini, Zico of Brazil and Diego Maradona of Argentina were the hottest properties on the transfer market of the day. Juventus won the race for the Frenchman’s signature, and his five seasons in Italy were to prove the most triumphant of his career.
Platini made 72 senior appearances for his country, scoring 41 goals, and was the lynchpin for one of the greatest French teams of all time. The men in blue won the 1984 European Championship on home soil, Platini scoring a remarkable nine goals and walking away with the award for Player of the Tournament.
After hanging up his boots, Platini remained fully immersed in the game. He was his country’s head coach from 1988 until 1992, and has now been UEFA President for more than five years.
Now join FIFA.com and Michel Platini on a trip back in time, and get to know one of the game's all-time greats in our latest Video of the Week