Amidst all the drama, the upheavals on issues both local in Qatar and global meandering of conflicts which seem to be an endless cycle of debates challenging to resolve — the World Cup 2022 has found its worthy champion.
Enter Argentina and the Lionel Messi. The match has a heart-stopping 4-2 as ties were seemingly going to be played one upon another. Messi finally was able to have a perfect closure to his legendary career as one of the elite football players of all time. Argentina was able to beat France on penalties in a final that is as historic as Qatar hosting the game itself.
Argentina saw Gonzalo Montiel rolling in the deciding penalty that gave Argentina their third World Cup and prevented France from becoming the first team in 60 years to retain the trophy.
Epic Performances from Messi and Mbappe
Phenomenal. That about sums up the plays rendered by Messi and Mbappe in the final match for the World Cup. Both have lived up to the expectations of all spectators to the sport with Messi scoring twice and Mbappe becoming to come up with a World Cup final hat-trick that ended the game 3-3 at extra time. The last such event was executed by England’s Geoff Hurst back in 1966.
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The first half of the game saw Argentina seemingly in an effortless manner to win the World Cup with Messi opening the scoring from a penalty spot before Angel Di Maria doubled Argentina’s lead at an unexpected counterattack during the 36th minute.
Mbappe didn’t give the easy win to Argentina when he pulled one back from the penalty spot with 10 minutes to go before equalizing the score just 60 seconds later to force extra time. The final penalty had both Messi and Mbappe scoring but Kingsley Coman’s next kick for France was saved and Aurelien Tchouameni, unfortunately, missed the target. This saw France losing the final on penalties during World Cup matches.
Messi, retiring at 35, caps his remarkable career by mirroring that of Diego Maradona. Mbappe will also be remembered as the one who dared to have this impossible as well as being the top scorer with eight goals — one more than his Paris Saint-Germain teammate Messi.
Argentina runs with a two-goal lead
Thirty-six years ago, Argentina also emerged victorious in their last World Cup with a similar scenario. This was indeed a long time before they saw the repeat again in 2022. Argentina almost did not have this perfect ending with France’s Mbappe skillfully and creatively coming up with mindblowing gameplays given the tie at the final berth of the game.
Mbappe’s astounding spot-kick into the net had French President Emmanual Macron rise to his feet with that glimmer of hope of winning the World Cup. The moment had Messi robbed possession by Coman in the lead-up before Mbappe found Thuram and then met his partner’s knockdown with a stunning volley.
This particular gameplay will go down as one of the most memorable and dramatic in World Cup history — this also had the French players on the bench race across the pitch to celebrate with their teammates.
It’s not hard to imagine that Argentina was in a bit of a panic since they lost the 2014 final in extra time. But Messi followed up to score early in the second extra period after Lautaro Martinez’s shot was saved. However, France was again saved by Mbappe as he converted another penalty following a Montiel handball.
Finally, Argentina needed a brilliant Martinez to save from Kolo Muani to take it to penalties and Montiel’s kick proved decisive to finally spark the Argentinians’ ecstatic celebrations.
Rooting for Japan but Argentina truly deserves the World Cup anytime. They have proven their mettle in the game and their passion is without end. Kudos to France who now gave the world a glimpse of another rising star in Mbappe. Any comments on the World Cup? Just let us know anything under the sun. We always look forward to your feedback. Cheers!