Argentina has won the men’s FIFA World Cup final over France, capping a dream ending for team captain Lionel Messi, 35, who will be lifting his first World Cup trophy and his last.
The score was 3-3 with Argentina winning the penalty shootout 4-2.
Argentina dominated much of the game with Messi in command but defending champions France made a stunning comeback with two quick successive goals from Kylian Mbappe to tie the game 2-2 and take it to extra time. Messi then scored a goal to take the lead 3-2, but Mbappe tied again with a penalty, securing the first hat trick in a World Cup final since 1966. Argentina won 4-2 in a penalty shootout.
This World Cup was dogged by off-field controversies over its host nation’s human rights record, FIFA’s ban on the OneLove armbands, and the death of prominent U.S. sports journalist Grant Wahl. Despite a clampdown on symbols of protest during the tournament, fans and players found unique ways to protest against discrimination and inequality.
But on the field, Morocco’s underdog story of being the first Arab and African country to reach the semis captured hearts and headlines across the world. France ended Morocco’s dream run in the semifinals, while Argentina knocked out Croatia 3-0 setting up the Messi and Mbappe showdown in the final.