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The day Messi perfected football…

by Afonso
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When Gonzalo Montiel’s shot found the France net in the tiebreaker, Lionel Messi fell to his knees on the Lucille green with his arms outstretched. Tears of joy glistened at the corners of his eyes. As if everything in the world is available to him.

Everything has been done! Everything that can be won in club football, Messi has already won it all. He regretted not being able to win anything for Argentina in the title of Copa America and La Finalissima. But that achievement is like a stimulant, evoking the desire for greater achievement. Increases the scope of dreams – that’s enough, just a little more!

That happened exactly one year ago today. Messi’s achievement is over.

Only one World Cup was left to achieve. Messi won it in a dramatic final that defies even a fairy tale. The dream of such a moment has been made oxygen by Messi running all his life – from Rosario to Barcelona, ​​from Barcelona to Paris. Germany, South Africa, Russia, Brazil were on the way.

Messi, who celebrated his 35th birthday six months before the final in Lucille, was as old as his age waiting to achieve his dream. For Argentines, the wait was a little longer – 36 years. Diego Armando Maradona held up the 14-and-a-half-inch-high golden trophy at the end of the 2018 World Cup final in Mexico, the last memory anyone would have touching the World Cup in Argentina’s sky-blue jersey. Then the World Cup came four years later, and Albiceleste’s dreams were shattered.

Finally, Argentina’s 36-year wait for Messi, who is at home at 35, is over. At the Lucille Stadium, France beat previous world champions, Kylian Mbappe, at the end of a breathless final. What is the best World Cup final of all time? The number of people who answered ‘yes’ will be more!

However, Messi’s journey to world victory was not easy at all. Stumbles, failures, comebacks or displays of indomitable will – none were lacking in the story of Argentina’s third World Cup win. And he is at the center of the story? A wizard of 5 feet 7 inches.

Saudi Arabia went down to the ground in the first match against Argentina, who went to Qatar from 36 consecutive matches unbeaten. From the second match against Mexico, so Argentina’s final game! Looking back now, Argentina fans will be proud to hear the word final, but at that time, the final was synonymous with the fear of broken dreams.

As minutes ticked away in the second group game, the first half over and a third of the second half over, Argentina were trembling with fear of being eliminated in the group stage. Again the eyes of the broken dream. How else is the Argentine dreamer hiding! Messi appeared, the Messiah. In the 64th minute, his shot from outside the box hit the Mexico net, and the blue-and-blue dream got color again. Argentina rose with new enthusiasm.

In the end, they beat Mexico 2-0 to put the fear aside, but Argentina’s matches were all finals. The last match of the group against Robert Lewandowski’s Poland, however, was easily won. The opponents in the last sixteen are easy on paper – Australia. Argentina went ahead with Messi’s goal and won the match, but at the last moment, Australia also shook the hearts of the Argentines.

Next? The Netherlands! That match in Lusail is also special for Argentina. Messi’s penalty, Messi’s incredible assist to Molina’s goal – Argentina went 2-0 up, but the Netherlands pulled back with two goals at the last minute to put Argentina on the brink of another nightmare. Before the match, the Netherlands coach Louis von Haal’s comments, after Messi’s goal in the match, von Haal went and celebrated in front of the match. In the end, Argentina’s dream got a little more colorful in the tiebreaker, a ‘hawk’ named Emiliano Martinez took Argentina’s dream to the semi-finals.

Semi-Finals – Two ‘LM10’s duel. Lionel Messi vs Luka Modric. Argentina’s victory in that duel. Messi’s Messi’s assist will be remembered for a long time in the race to feed Guardiol, who is almost 14 years younger than himself. It could be argued – Molina’s goal against the Netherlands, or Alvarez’s against Croatia – which Messi assist is more beautiful?

He accompanied Argentina to the final, sparking controversy. Messi in the final. The time machine was taking us back to the final eight years ago. 113 mins, Mario Gotcha, Germany 1-0 Argentina…2014 World Cup final made Messi cry. Messi’s helpless look at Trophita as he passed didn’t make any Argentinian cry!

But this time the cry is Argentina’s happiness. The tears of 2014 did not stop, the Argentines did not want to stop the tears of this time.

This time too there was a fear of heart breaking tears. The opponent was France, Kylian Mbappe’s France! Previous World Cup winner France. However, in the first half of the day, Lucille made France a neighborhood team and Argentina went into the break with a two-goal lead. Messi went ahead with a penalty, the next goal coming from Argentina’s ‘player of the final’ Angel Di Maria. Had he been there against Germany in the 2014 final, Argentina would have won – Argentina’s long-held regret had by then turned into belief.

Before that, Argentina had a big test. Looking back now, it can be said that the satisfaction of Messi, Argentina’s all-rounder, is so high because of that test. Test Name – Kylian Mbappé.

When Argentina’s World Cup victory seemed a matter of time, Messi’s PSG team-mate Kylian Mbappe appeared as the villain in the story. One goal, two goals – Mbappe equalized the match. Again in overtime! Messi’s goal gave Argentina the lead in the 108th minute, ten minutes later Mbappe’s incredible hat-trick brought France level again. The finale has already reached the peak of excitement.

The last point of the thrill is still left! At the point where Messi and the World Cup meet, Emiliano Martinez appeared as Messi’s sidekick. At the very last minute of extra time, in the 123rd minute, an eye-catching save turned back Kolo Muani, then stopped two French shots in the tiebreaker!

Gonzalo Montiel’s shot hits the net – Argentina’s World Cup Messi’s World Cup

90 thousand pairs of eyes in the gallery saw Messi kissing the dream trophy. A wave of frenzy swept from Lucile to Buenos Aires. In Bangladesh All over the world.

18 December 2022. Like a science fiction movie, if there is a time travel opportunity in reality, Messi will definitely want to go back to this time a year ago. The day that made Messi the winner.

Or, as the caption of a picture posted on FIFA’s Twitter today put it, the day Messi perfected football.


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