All is now set for the 64th and final match of the Qatar 2022 World Cup.
Indeed, the past few days have been filled with so much drama, action and several talking points.
Now the 2022 World Cup is set for a befitting climax where Argentina and France will be battling it out for the top prize.
Argentina and France are two-time winners of the World Cup hoping to complete a hat-trick of titles at the iconic Lusail Stadium this Sunday.
Obviously, Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe are the two principal men for their respective nations – and all eyes will be on who comes out on top.
Both PSG teammates have enjoyed a good outing in Qatar, scoring five goals apiece and only separated by the number of assists they have bagged for their teams.
It will be a fight to the finish, no doubt not just between Messi and Mbappe, but the entire Argentina and France teams.
France and Argentina have met 12 times in total – the first time coming in the first World Cup in 1930.
Argentina have the upper hand with six wins compared to France’s three wins and there have been three draws in the past meetings between these two countries
But the French side came out on top in their most-recent clash – a thrilling 4-3 win in the last 16 of Russia 2018.
We wait to see if Argentina will get revenge this evening or if France will make it back-to-back wins over the South American side.
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Kickoff is 4.00 p.m.
Argentina team news
Di Maria returning to the side is the big team news as Paredes misses out.
Starting XI: Martinez; Molina, Romero, Otamendi, Tagliafico; De Paul, Fernandez, Mac Allister; Di Maria, Messi, Alvarez
France team news
Starting XI: Lloris; Kounde, Varane, Upamecano, Hernandez; Tchouameni, Rabiot, Griezmann; Dembele, Giroud, Mbappe
Both teams set to find their way through the tunnel into the pack full iconic Lusail Stadium
Argentina in their traditional One and blue stripe jersey and France in their all-dark blue jersey
We start with the national anthem of Argentina before France take their turn
The players all look fired up and the fans are roaring as loud as they can. We should be in for a good time this evening
This is the 10th World Cup final between a South American team and a European team. The South Americans have won 70% of the final matches.
Many records can be set and broken in this final
We are underway… France with the kickoff!!!
First free kick to Argentina as Tchouameni commits a foul
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) December 18, 2022
Argentina start on the front foot with the first attempt at goal.
Another free kick for Argentina as a foul is committed on Messi
Di Maria is looking lively on the left flank of the attack for Argentina and they have another shot on target well taken care of by Hugo Lloris
Messi adjudged to have committed a foul and France win a free kick
Foul on Rabiot and France get another freekick
Corner kick for Argentina as Varane deflects a goal-bound shot
Romero badges into Lloris and the France keeper is being attended to by the medics as game is temporarily halted
With 26 matches to his name, Messi is the all-time record holder for most games played at the World Cup
Rabiot attempts a one-two with Mbappe but the Argentina defence thwarts the run
Di Maria flagged offside as Argentina make another threatening move up front
Argentina with the higher ball possession presently but after 15 minutes Argentina 0-0 France
MISSED CHANCE… Di Maria roots the ball high after another good run by Argentina
France have a free kick as Argentina’s De Paul hacks down Hernandez
Griezmann floats a well-taken free kick and Giroud gets his head to it but it is over the bar
Twenty minutes gone: Argentina 0-0 France
PENALTY!!!!! Di Maria wins it for Argentina after a push from Dembele
GOAL: Messi scores his sixth goal at the World Cup in Qatar
With a total of 12 World Cup goals, Messi is now tied with Pele
25 Minutes gone: Argentina 1-0 France
Free kick for France retaken
Collision between Messi and Hernandez
Both players are ok and ready to go
We are at the half-hour mark and it is still Argentina with the 1-0 lead courtesy of Messi’s well-taken penalty kick
Nine of the last ten teams to score in a World Cup final have gone on to win it… This is good news for Argentina
GOAL::::: Di Maria makes it 2-0
Credit to the Argetina coach who seems to have gotten his tactics spot on for France
Messi is everywhere for Argentina as we have seven minutes added time to play in the first half
Di Maria has been the joker in this game; winning a penalty and scoring a goal
Yellow card for Fernandez.
HT: Argentina 2-0 France
Argentina half way to winning their third World Cup
Argentina set the second half underway..
Argentina maintaining the same intensity in the early exchanges in the second half and they already have a shot on target
Corner kick for France, Griezmann delivers the cross but Argentina goalkeeper Martinez makes a quick save
Rabiot gets a yellow card for a foul on Argentina’s De Paul
Alvarez draws a save from Lloris as Argentina stay ahead as we approach the half hour mark
Messi threatening the France defence as he looks to add another goal to his tally
Unfortunately, Mbappe has been largely anonymous in this final
Substitution; Di Maria is taken off for Acuna.
70 Minutes: Argentina 2-0 France
Hernandez and Griezmann off for Coman and Carmavinga
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