Cantona to have stadium named after him
© AFP

Former French international footballer Eric Cantona on Saturday inaugurated a football stadium named after him in the French town of Tignes, local authorities said. French champions Lyon train at the facility, as do the French national team, but it recently underwent a face lift and former Manchester United hero Cantona was on hand to open the renovated ground.

The turf has also been relaid, staff said, with Lyon currently in town to prepare for the new season.

Cantona, 42, was in Tignes for his Euro Beach Soccer tournament which he runs with brother Joel, with the Savoy resort hosting the annual event.

The temperamental Cantona played for Auxerre, Martigues, Marseille, Bordeaux, Montpellier and Nimes before helping propel Leeds United to the English title in 1992.

He then left for Manchester United the following season and in five years at Old Trafford was an inspirational figure in United's rise back to the top of the English game.

Cantona, who won 45 caps for France but was not included in their 1998 FIFA World Cup™-winning squad, launched a new career as an actor following retirement along with his beach soccer franchise.