Former United States president Barack Obama hailed Lionel Messi as the greatest of all time after Argentina’s emphatic and triumphant 2022 FIFA World Cup campaign. La Albeceleste defeated France in a penalty shootout on Sunday (18 December) after the two sides finished level at 3-3 at the end of extra time.
Following the result, Obama wrote on Twitter:
“Congrats to Argentina and to the GOAT, Lionel Messi, for an amazing World Cup victory.”
Lionel Messi may well have cemented himself as the ‘GOAT’ after a magnificent campaign at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Argentina’s run in this year’s edition of the tournament has been stellar despite their disappointing opener against Saudi Arabia, where they lost 2-1.
La Albiceleste completely turned their campaign around after their first group-stage game, with consistent victories all the way through to the final. The Argentines have overcome obstacles such as the Netherlands and Croatia, the 2018 World Cup finalists, in their path to triumph.
Messi has put on stunning performances in this year’s edition of the tournament, racking up seven goals in this World Cup alone. The Argentine superstar stepped up on multiple occasions, including the 2022 FIFA World Cup final against France.
In a truly thrilling encounter that saw six goals in total at the end of extra time, Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) superstars Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe took centre stage. The Argentine captain bagged a brace for his side, including what seemed to be the match-winner in the 108th minute.
However, Mbappe was relentless in his efforts to lead his side to glory. The French superstar scored two goals in just as many minutes in the second half, reviving France’s chances by making the scoreline level (2-2).
When Messi scored in the 108th minute to take Argentina 3-2 up, Mbappe once again displayed his determination after converting a penalty in the 118th minute.
The final went on to penalties, which Argentina won 4-2. Lionel Messi & Co. finally lifted the coveted trophy, making them this year’s World Champions.
Lionel Messi breaks multiple records at 2022 FIFA World Cup
Messi has shattered a number of records at the 2022 FIFA World Cup. He broke two records in the final against France alone.
The Argentine superstar has made 26 appearances at the World Cup, crossing former Germany international Lothar Matthaus, who previously held the record at 25. Messi also broke the record for most minutes played at the World Cup, passing the mark set by Italian legend Paolo Maldini (2,216).
The forward also became the all-time leading goalscorer in the World Cup for Argentina, when he scored against Croatia in the semi-final, surpassing Gabriel Batistuta’s record of 10 goals.
Messi broke yet another record by winning the Golden Ball at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, becoming the first player to win two after first picking up the award in the 2014 edition.
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