Argentina’s forward #10 Lionel Messi lifts the World Cup trophy during the Qatar 2022 World Cup trophy ceremony after the football final match between Argentina and France at Lusail Stadium in Lusail, north of Doha on December 18, 2022. — AFP
Argentina defeated France 4-2 in a penalty shoot-out to win the World Cup for the third time on Sunday.
Argentina captain Lionel Messi scored twice and France striker Kylian Mbappe hit a hat-trick as a thrilling World Cup final finished 3-3 after extra time at the Lusail Stadium.
In an extraordinary night of high drama, Argentinian substitute Gonzalo Montiel stroked home the winning spot-kick to seal an agonising shoot-out loss for defending champions France.
France had fought back from 2-0 down and 3-2 down in extra-time to make it 3-3 and take the game to penalties.
Messi had given Argentina the lead from the penalty spot in the first half before Angel Di Maria made it 2-0.
The Argentinians looked to be cruising to victory until Mbappe scored twice in the 80th and 81st minutes to level it at 2-2.
France looked the likelier team to go on and win it, but Messi put Argentina 3-2 ahead in extra-time after poking home from close range after Lautaro Martinez’s shot was parried by France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
But there was more drama two minutes from the end of extra-time when Montiel conceded a penalty for handball.
Messi’s Paris Saint-Germain team-mate Mbappe stepped up to score from the spot for the second time to take the game to penalties.