Argentina has been crowned the 2022 World Cup champions after defeating defending champs France via penalty shootouts.
Argentina took an early 2-0 lead against France in the first 75 minutes of the highly anticipated match until French forward Kylian Mbappé tied the game with a penalty kick and a goal 90 seconds later. Both teams tied again during extra time, with the score jumping to 3-3, causing a penalty shootout to determine the winner.
ABC News reports that after two failed goals from the French national team, Argentina won the highly contested match with a shootout of 4-2.
Argentina had not won a World Cup since 1986 when they won the tournament for the second time. They first won the World Cup in 1978. They also made it to the final in 2014 but lost to Germany.
Meanwhile, France had sought to win back-to-back World Cups after winning the tournament in 2018, which would have made them the first team to have had consecutive wins since Brazil in 1958 and 1962.
Argentina's team captain Lionel Messi, widely regarded as one of the greatest players of all time, scored two goals, and Mbappé scored a hattrick of three goals. Both players also were successful in the penalty shootout.
While Messi has played in the past five World Cups, he had never been able to hoist the coveted trophy until Sunday night in Qatar.
"CHAMPIONS OF THE WORLD!!!!!!! So many times I dreamed it," he wrote on Instagram, thanking his family and fans.
While Messi previously said that this would be his final appearance at a World Cup, he asserted on Sunday that he will not retire from the game just yet.
"Obviously, I wanted to complete my career with this, (I) can't ask for more," he said in a post-match interview. "Finishing my career this way is impressive. After this, what else? I have a Copa América, a World Cup. Almost at the very end."
"I love soccer, what I do. I enjoy being part of the national team, the group. I want to enjoy a couple of more matches being a world champion," he continued.
"It's just crazy that it became a reality this way. I craved for this so much. I knew God would bring this gift to me, I had the feeling that this (World Cup) was the one," Messi said. "It took so long, but here it is. We suffered a lot, but we managed to do it."
In addition to winning the world cup, Messi was awarded the Golden Ball on Sunday, making him the first player to win it twice as the tournament's best player.
The next World Cup will be held across Canada, the United States, and Mexico in 2026.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Julian Finney/Staff
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for Christian Headlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.