31 Facts About Lilian Thuram


Lilian Thuram began playing football professionally in his homeland with Monaco and played in the top flight in France, Italy and Spain for over 15 seasons, with notable stints in Serie A with both Parma and Juventus before finishing his career with Barcelona.


Lilian Thuram was the most capped player in the history of the France national team with 142 appearances between 1994 and 2008 until Hugo Lloris surpassed the mark in 2022.


Lilian Thuram was born in Guadeloupe in the French West Indies.


Lilian Thuram only made one appearance that season, but was officially promoted to the first team the following season, when he would go on to make 19 appearances.


Lilian Thuram was inserted into the starting XI by the end of 1992 and would go on to make 155 league appearances for the Ligue 1 outfit, before transferring to Parma in the summer of 1996.


Lilian Thuram made his national team debut in 1994, while at Monaco.


In July 1996, Lilian Thuram made a high-profile transfer to Italy to join Serie A club Parma.


Lilian Thuram maintained a starting position in defence throughout his time with Parma, making 163 Serie A appearances and scoring one league goal.


Lilian Thuram formed defensive partnerships with the likes of Ciro Ferrara, Paolo Montero, Gianluca Pessotto, Mark Iuliano, Alessandro Birindelli, Igor Tudor, Gianluca Zambrotta, Nicola Legrottaglie, Fabio Cannavaro, Giorgio Chiellini, Federico Balzaretti and Jonathan Zebina during his five-year tenure with the club.


Lilian Thuram managed over 200 total appearances for the club, with two goals.


Lilian Thuram played in the 2002 World Cup, 2006 World Cup, Euro 1996, Euro 2004 and Euro 2008, in addition to winning the 2003 FIFA Confederations Cup.


Lilian Thuram was named in the French squad for the 1998 World Cup and played a key part in their entire tournament, most notably in the semi final against Croatia.


Lilian Thuram was awarded the Bronze Ball as the third most valuable player in the tournament.


Lilian Thuram earned his 116th cap for France in the group stage match against South Korea in Leipzig on 18 June 2006.


On 9 June 2008, Lilian Thuram took the field against Romania in a group match, and became the first player to make 15 UEFA European Championship finals appearances.


Lilian Thuram played one more game during the tournament, raising the number of his appearances to 16, which record was then equaled a few days later by Edwin van der Sar from the Netherlands in the quarter-finals.


Lilian Thuram finished his career with the national team as France's most capped player with 142 appearances.


Lilian Thuram's record was broken by Hugo Lloris in the quarter-finals of the 2022 FIFA World Cup.


Lilian Thuram was an extremely dominant, consistent, athletic and attentive footballer, who was considered by pundits to be one of the best defenders in the world in his prime.


Lilian Thuram named his sons after Jamaican activist Marcus Garvey and Egyptian pharaoh Khephren, respectively.


From 2007 to 2013, Lilian Thuram was in a relationship with Karine Le Marchand, a French TV host.


Lilian Thuram was sponsored by sportswear company Nike and appeared in Nike commercials.


Beyond his football career, Lilian Thuram has always shown political engagement, and has frequently spoken out against racism.


In such, during the French riots in November 2005, Lilian Thuram took a position against Nicolas Sarkozy, the head of the conservative political party UMP and then Minister of the Interior.


Lilian Thuram was opposed to the verbal attacks against young people that the then-Minister made when he talked about the "scum", and he said that Nicolas Sarkozy never lived in a "banlieue", areas of low-income housing surrounding French cities.


On 6 September 2006, Lilian Thuram sparked controversy when he invited 80 people, who were expelled by French Minister of the Interior Nicolas Sarkozy from a flat where they lived illegally, to the football match between France and Italy.


Lilian Thuram has engaged in campaigns that favour the Catalan language in Northern Catalonia.


In November 2011, Lilian Thuram curated an exhibition at the Musee du quai Branly entitled "Human Zoos: The Invention of the Savage".


In January 2013, Lilian Thuram took part in a march through Paris by supporters of the Ayrault government's plan to legalise same-sex marriage.


Lilian Thuram had previously explained that he supported same-sex marriage in the name of equal rights, and in the name of France's secular principles, rejecting religious arguments against civil marriage.


Lilian Thuram expressed support for the right of same-sex couples to adopt children.