Inspired by Lionel Messi, who scored twice, Argentina won 4-2 in a penalty shootout after an incredible 3-3 draw at the Lusail Iconic Stadium in Qatar, with France’s talisman Kylian Mbappe scoring a hat-trick but ending up on the losing side. It is the third time that Argentina have won the World Cup, adding to their triumphs in 1978 and 1986.
Argentina dominated the first three-quarters of the match and looked to have the trophy in their hands after Messi – playing his last World Cup match at the age of 35 – put them ahead from the penalty spot on 23 minutes before Angel di Maria doubled their advantage with a neat finish 13 minutes later.
France had been listless for much of the game but in Mbappe, they had one player who could lift them from their torpor. He scored a penalty himself on 80 minutes and then dramatically equalised a minute later with a thumping volley.
Messi looked to have won the match in extra time for Argentina when he converted from close range on 109 minutes but France were not done and when Gonzalo Montiel handled the ball in the box on 118 minutes, Mbappe completed his hat-trick with his second spot-kick of the match. Randal Kolo Muani and Lautaro Martinez both missed late chances in stoppage time to clinch it and the final went to penalties.
Mbappe and Messi both scored their teams’ opening efforts but France’s Kingsley Coman had his penalty saved by Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez and Aurelien Tchouameni then sent his penalty wide as Argentina prevailed 4-2 to win an incredible World Cup final, with Montiel converting the winning kick.