It will be a clash between two teams who have both won the trophy twice before. Argentina, champions of 1978 and 1986, will face France, champions of 1998 and 2018, in the summit clash in Qatar on Sunday.
Both teams are not only on the cusp of World Cup glory, but also a plethora of records.
TimesofIndia.com here takes a look at the records and key stats that are drawing both Lionel Messi’s Argentina and Hugo Lloris’ France as they are one win away from securing what will be their third Champions League title. world :
If Argentina wins the World Cup:
1. The Albiceleste will put an end to 36 years of waiting for the title of world champion. They last won the World Cup in 1986
2. Lionel Messi will win his first-ever World Cup title and emulate Argentina’s other two World Cup-winning captains – Daniel Passarella and Diego Maradona
3. They will become only the fourth team to win three or more World Cup titles. The all-time record is still with Brazil, with 5 titles, followed by Germany and Italy, who are tied with 4 titles each
4. They will break Europe’s hegemony and become the first South American team to win the title since Brazil in 2002. The last four editions of the World Cup have been won by European teams (2006 – Italy; 2010 – Spain; 2014 – Germany and 2018 – France)
Argentina 🆚 FranceThe #FIFAWorldCup final is SET! 🇦🇷🇫🇷
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) 1671051845000
5. Their World Cup final win-loss record will become 3:3. They currently sit at 2:3, with wins in 1978 and 1986 and defeats in the finals of the 1930, 1990 and 2014 editions.
6. Lionel Messi will bring down the curtain on his World Cup career with the biggest win and biggest trophy of his life
7. Argentina will become the first South American team since Brazil in 2002 to beat European opposition in a World Cup final. Brazil beat Germany 2-0 in the 2002 final
8. If – Lionel Messi scores a goal in the final, Kylian Mbappe fails to register on the game sheet, and Olivier Giroud and Julian Alvarez score once or not at all, Messi will win the Golden Boot for the first time for most goals. (Messi and Mbappe are currently tied on 5 goals each, while Giroud and Alvarez have 4 goals each)
9. Messi is also a strong contender for the Golden Ball as the tournament’s best player. He also won it in 2014, when Argentina lost to Germany in the final. If he wins the Ballon d’Or again, he will become the first player to win the coveted prize twice, as it was first awarded in the 1982 edition in Spain, won by the Italian Paolo Rossi.
🇦🇷 Lionel Messi has been involved in 40 goals this season for PSG and Argentina.🏟️ 28 games⚽️ 22 goals🎯 6pm… https://t.co/zelGby0IfJ
— FIFA World Cup Stats (@alimo_philip) 1671062704000
10. Messi already has four Player of the Match awards at Qatar 2022, which is the highest ever won in a single edition of the World Cup. If he takes the prize again in the final, he will be the first man to reach five in a single edition. Messi won four Player of the Match awards himself in 2014 and Wesley Sneijder did the same for the Dutch in 2010.
11. If Messi scores one more goal in the final, he will reach six goals in this edition of the World Cup, which will also be the most goals he has ever scored in a single edition. He had already scored five goals in the 2014 edition in Brazil, in which Argentina were second to Germany.
12. If Messi scores once in the final, he will equal Pele’s World Cup record of 12 goals. If he scores twice, he will overtake Pelé and equal Just Fontaine on 13 goals. Should Messi score a hat-trick, he would overtake Pele and Fontaine and equal Gerd Muller’s World Cup record of 14 goals. The record for most goals scored in the World Cup belongs to Germany’s Miroslav Klose (16 goals), with Brazil’s Ronaldo Nazario in second place (15 goals).
13. A win for Argentina will mean France finish second for only the second time in World Cup history. They had previously finished second in the 2006 edition when they lost 3-5 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in the final with Italy.
🏅FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Golden Boot Race🥇Lionel Messi-5⚽️+3🅰️ 114mins/g🥈Kylian Mbappe-5⚽️+2🅰️ 95mins/g🥉Julia… https://t.co/UXftBabU61
— FIFA World Cup Stats (@alimo_philip) 1671060969000
If France wins the World Cup:
1. They will become the first team in 60 years to successfully defend the title. The last team to do so was Brazil in 1962, having also won the 1958 edition
2. They will only become the third team overall to successfully defend the title. Italy won consecutive titles in 1934 and 1938 and Brazil in 1958 and 1962
3. Didier Deschamps will become the first manager since 1938 to win back-to-back World Cup titles. So far the last and only man to do this was Vittorio Pozzo with Italy (1934 and 1938)
🇬🇧France are the 1st team to reach 2 consecutive World Cup finals since Brazil in 1998 & 2002.🏆 France may be the… https://t.co/E10RU8Qxmf
— FIFA World Cup Stats (@alimo_philip) 1671061686000
4. Deschamps will also become the first to win a World Cup title as a player and two titles as a coach. As a World Cup-winning manager, he is currently tied with Mario Zagallo (titles in 1958 and 1962 as player then coach of Brazil in 1970) and Franz Beckenbauer (player in 1974 and coach of West Germany in 1990). Deschamps was the captain of the France team which won the title in 1998 and coached in 2018
5. European title hegemony will continue. This will be the fifth consecutive edition (since 2006) to be won by a European team
6. If Lionel Messi doesn’t score in the final, Julian Alvarez and Olivier Giroud score one or none and Kylian Mbappe scores once, Mbappe will walk away with the Golden Boot for most goals. (Messi and Mbappe are currently tied on 5 goals each, while Giroud and Alvarez have 4 goals each)
🇦🇷Lionel Messi and Argentina are one game away from winning the World Cup.🏆 Redemption Time#FIFAWorldCup|#GOAT𓃵|… https://t.co/h2e4SNg6Fm
— FIFA World Cup Stats (@alimo_philip) 1671006697000
7. If Mbappe scores once in the final, he will be tied with Pelé (Brazil), Mario Kempes (Argentina) and James Rodriguez (Colombia) for the most goals in a single edition of the World Cup before having 24 years (6 goals). If he scores twice, he will become the solo record holder. Mbappé turns 24 on December 20
8. A French victory in the final will mean Argentina finish second for the fourth time in World Cup history. The Albiceleste had already finished second in 1930, 1990 and 2014