The match went to penalties after a dramatic six-goal thriller at Lusail Stadium. Goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez was the star of the shootout as he saved Kingsley Coman’s penalty to give Argentina a big advantage. Argentina’s four shots on goal scored to lead the team home as Aurelien Tchouameni also missed for France.
It happened: Argentina vs France
Messi scored a brace in the final, including a penalty, and Angel Di Maria scored one for the champions. But it was Kylian MbappeHat-trick of who kept the holders alive in the contest.
It was an incredible night of drama and fluctuating fortunes, delivering one of the greatest finals ever to cap off a wonderful tournament.
Argentina win the World Cup on penalties! 🏆 @adidasfootball | #Fifa World Cup
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Argentina had appeared to be heading for a one-sided victory after Messi’s penalty and a brilliant first-half goal from Di Maria gave them full control, but Mbappe converted an 80th-minute penalty and flew in an equalizer a minute later to take the game into overtime.
Messi again put Argentina ahead but Mbappe equalized with another penalty, becoming the second man to score a hat-trick in a World Cup final after Geoff Hurst for England 1966.
This brought the match to a shootout where Argentina keeper Martinez saved Kingsley Coman’s penalty and Tchouameni fired wide to give Gonzalo Montiel a chance to win, which he happily took.
It meant that after his record-breaking 26th World Cup game, at the fifth and final moment of demand, Messi, 35, finally lifted the trophy he and his nation were clamoring for, lifting it alongside Diego Maradona after the first country’s football god. led them to their second emotional triumph in 1986 after their first in 1978.
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Everything had seemed to go so well earlier.
Di Maria, with just minutes under his belt since the group stage, looked dangerous from the start and when he left Ousmane Dembele to struggle with a neat corner, the bewildered Frenchman awkwardly stumbled him from behind after 23 minutes. Messi took the penalty, calmly heading the ball past Hugo Lloris, then Di Maria took center stage again after 36 minutes when he completed one of the best goals to grace a final.
Nahuel Molina cushioned a clearance for the first time to Alexis Mac Allister, who immediately played the ball to Messi. The captain changed the direction of the attack with a big turn and a halfway layoff, Julian Alvarez brought it back to Mac Allister, who moved forward and slid the ball down the pitch perfectly for Di Maria can take off and go home.
France had barely been kicked and coach Didier Deschamps made a decisive decision, withdrawing Olivier Giroud and Dembele and throw on Marcus Thuram and Randal Kolo Muani after 41 minutes.
It had little impact until they were given a lifeline in the 80th minute when Nicolas Otamendi tripped Kolo Muani and the previously anonymous Mbappe deftly converted the penalty.
A minute later he swept away a brilliant volley equalizer after cleverly combining with Thuram, stunning the massed Argentina fans as they watched their side concede two quick goals for the third time in the tournament.
Argentina regained the lead after a counterattack when the tireless Lautaro Martinez smashed a shot over Hugo Lloris and Messi pounced on the rebound, with technology confirming the ball had crossed the line. The drama was not over, however, as Mbappe hammered a shot against Montiel’s arm to produce another penalty in the 117th minute, which he dispatched calmly.
(With agency contributions)