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LUSAIL, Qatar — Sometimes, the game goes beyond its standard definition and begins to take on certain human characteristics. It will defy assumption after assumption, dazzle and dazzle, dazzle and confound, deflect and backfire almost as if it were joking. It will soar to a life of its own, an unusual animal and perhaps even fascinated by its own whimsy.

Then sometimes, like this endorphin-fest at Sunday night’s World Cup final between Argentina and France, set amid extraordinary jubilation at the Lucille Stadium, it does a trick the rest of the world can’t; immortal

That’s where this one is going now, as the billions who watched begin to work out the difficult art of how Argentina and its 35-year-old world hero Lionel Messi beat France and its 23-year-old world hero Kylian Mbappe. 4-2 after an unreal 3-3 draw on penalties. They might try to remember the way this thing took many of the 46 million Argentinians and 67 million French and most of the rest of the world, from 2-0 to Argentina after 79 minutes to 2-2, 90 to 3-2. Argentina 3-3 after 108 after 120 meters. Here this whole episode goes, breathing into the future.

Lionel Messi captures World Cup glory as Argentina overcome France in a gripping final

In cafes, barbershops, pubs, classrooms and dens, people can talk forever about a night when one of the managers, Argentine Lionel Scaloni, said: was able to come back from the dead.”

This applies to June 2026, when the next Men’s World Cup starts in the USA, Mexico and Canada. That event will take place in a giant space after this event took place in the tiny thumb of the earth, but what about the final in 2022? The event is said to be Messi-less but shines with France’s near-dynasty, which has an excellent array of young stars, but hey, how about the 2022 final? How close were the French to their quest for an unprecedented third consecutive World Cup title in 2026, but also what about the 2022 final?

People far away might not even mention where it happened, which will be a relief to those who wished it hadn’t happened here, with its controversial charm and unreliability.

On December 18, after a three-hour game, fans celebrated Argentina’s World Cup victory. (Video: The Washington Post)

People can talk about how Messi got the trophy and the prize he won in five World Cups right before the curtain came down on that pursuit. They can talk about how Mbappe turned the game into one of those occasions that flatters the loser as much as the winner, raising his burgeoning image as someone who shakes the ground to become the first man to score three goals in the world. Cup final since England’s Geoff Hurst in 1966, and whose 81st-minute equalizer may rate as the greatest memory of this flurry of awesomeness.

“He can change the game in just one minute,” Deschamps said earlier in the event as France overcame a huge injury to reach their next final since Brazil 1998. was closed, and Deschamps was saying: “Kilian really made his mark in this final. “Unfortunately, he didn’t leave it the way he would have liked, and that’s why he was so disappointed.”

The disappointment of that face will live on in our memory. That face said a lot about the whole thing.

Some, such as those in the Northern Hemisphere, may wonder how, at 120+3, in that rare third minute of extra time, Mbappe wanted to take it all on the line with a nasty move through the defenders. on the left and in the box.

Others, such as those in the Southern Hemisphere, may remember that just before something bigger than the rest was about to happen, Argentine substitute Paulo Dybala cleared the ball away.

“Argentina endures”. Emotional celebrations of the World Cup victory in Buenos Aires

Among the hype can be talked about as clever managerial decisions as Scaloni’s starting of 34-year-old Angel Di Maria, who chased the French down the left early on, scored a free-kick before Messi scored and made it little himself. later: Or perhaps they will talk about France’s 41st-minute substitutions, which brought on the outstanding energy of Randall Kolo Moani, still only 24, and Marcus Thuram, still only 25. Speakers may notice how the game managed to include a particle. justice, as Argentina’s Gonzalo Montiel, whose 118th-minute handball earned a penalty and Mbappe’s equalizer and delayed victory 10 minutes after Messi’s goal looked like he had just scored, ended by finding out; win with a final penalty kick.

Some will remember some of the threats and fears over time. Some will remember others.

In the streets of the cities of Argentina, they will remember how they ran in the streets of the cities of Argentina, waiting 36 years to run in the streets of the cities of Argentina. “Well, this is too much,” Scaloni said of helping Argentines give during a tough economic time. “Our problems aren’t going anywhere, but they’re going to be a little bit happier, and that’s great.”

But mostly those on a planet long mad for this sport will remember how the evening finally turned to Messi, whose name has long appeared on the back of jerseys around the world. They will remember how he went to his family and the Argentina fans, who made such a noise it could almost be heard 8,300 miles away in Buenos Aires. They will remember how he looked, how his hunt for international trophies ended gloriously at the 2021 Copa America and 2022 World Cups; the first in front of an almost empty stadium in Rio de Janeiro, the second to 88,966. the fledgling stadium hangs on to its hype perfectly; the same stadium where Argentina started here last month, with much fanfare on the other side in a 2-1 defeat by Saudi Arabia.

It’s a fun planet that wishes peace of mind to a global citizen worth hundreds of millions, visible on billboards across continents. However, that’s what the world wanted to see in the familiar face of Messi after so many years of magic, and that’s what the world saw after the game that turned into his unforgettable life.

World Cup in Qatar

The most recent. Argentina won the World Cup, defeating France on penalties in a thrilling final in Lusail, Qatar, on Sunday in their first World Cup since 1986. . France were bidding to become the first double champions since Brazil won back-to-back trophies in 1958 and 1962.

Today’s WorldView. In the minds of many critics, especially in the West, the World Cup in Qatar will always remain a tournament shrouded in controversy. But Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani wants people to take a different view.

Point of view.America is no longer a laughing stock for men’s soccer. It’s on to something, and it’s more tailored to what works for the rest of the world, rather than stubbornly forcing American sports culture, without the benefit of the best talent, into international competition.” Read Jerry Brewer on the future of the US Men’s National Team.


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