François Perrin is a belligerent factory worker who plays football for a local amateur team, in a club owned by a rich businessman who also owns the factory where Perrin, as well as most of the population of Trincamp, works. His attitude doesn't endear him to anyone, and the situation is not helped when, at a training session, he pushes Berthier, the star and captain of the team, who demands that Perrin be expelled. Soon thereafter, he is also fired from his job, and the whole town turns against him and he is even prohibited from entering the local bar. When a drunk Berthier tries to rape a woman one night, Perrin is immediately framed for the deed, and ends up in jail after being brutalized by the police. Two months later, the Trincamp team is to participate in an important game for the France's Cup, but the bus carrying the team gets into an accident, and out of desperation to replace the injured players, Perrin is released from jail to help out the team. While on the way to the stadium, he manages to evade police and finds the rape victim and confront her. Rather than resulting in conflict, he actually finds someone who believes him, since she was not positive in her earlier identification, and she decides to investigate the testimonies that convicted Perrin, while he goes on to play and scores both of his team's goals in a very tight victory. Perrin is now the town's hero, and he uses that position and the knowledge of who did what and who made false reports to the police to plot a subtle but effective revenge on those who have wronged him.