Argentina's Victory to the 2022 World Cup
The 2022 World Cup took place in Qatar from November 20, 2022 to December 18, 2022, where 32 national teams played for the glory of being named World Champions. This year's World Champion was Argentina who was led by the youngest coach in World Cup history, Lionel Scaloni.
Argentina's first opponent in the group stage was Saudi Arabia which left Argentinas fans shocked when Al-Shehri tied the game at minute 49 equalizing Messi’s penalty. The game was intense with Argentinian players not looking forward to losing the 36-winning streak that won them the Copa America and the Finalissima titles. Unfortunately, in just 4 minutes Al-Dawsari entered the penalty area kicking with his left foot the winning goal and Argentina lost their first match in the competition.
Argentina was looking for redemption going against Mexico for a chance to prove that they were still standing in the championship. Mexico was putting up a big fight against Argentina defending and not letting them score in the first half. At minute 64, Leonel Messi received the ball from Angel Di Maria finding the perfect space to score and making it impossible for Mexico's goalkeeper Memo Ochoa to save it. Messi put the scoreboard 1-0 and Enzo Fernandez finalized the score 2-0 with a stellar kick towards the top left of the box, ending the chance for Mexico to get a comeback. Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez ends the match with a clean sheet. Messi won the Budweiser Player of the Match.
Argentina entered the final match in the group stage going against Poland who tied with Mexico (0-0) and got a clean sheet against Saudi Arabia (2-0). Argentina needed to win this match to advance to the Round of 16, many chances are missed by both teams, Poland goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny commits a foul by hitting Messi when he was going for the ball. Argentina was awarded a penalty and a chance to get a lead against Poland, Szczesny saves the penalty, and Messi fails at the chance to get the lead. The first half was coming to an end with 45 minutes already played, Argentinian player Nahuel Molina had the ball in the top right sideline and assists Alexis Mac Allister to the first goal in the match. Poland had put up a good fight not letting the Argentina players score till Enzo Fernandez dribbled past the Poland defenders providing a spectacular assist to Julian Alvarez who did not miss this chance and finalized the score 2-0 resulting in another clean sheet for the Argentinian team. Argentina ended the group stage on top with 6 points and moved to the Round of 16 where they will face Australia.
In the next rounds, if a team loses they were automatically be eliminated from the chance to win the championship. Lionel Messi was quick to give his team a lead scoring the first goal at the bottom left corner of the net. His goal was assisted by center-back player Nicolas Otamendi. Argentina entered the second half of the game where youngster Julian Alvarez, with the help of Rodrigo De Paul, pressed Australia's goalkeeper for the ball putting Argentina in the lead. With the game almost coming to an end Enzo Fernandez committed an own goal with just 13 more minutes left in the game. Australia had a big chance to equalize the game with young player Kuol entering the penalty area, but Emilio Martinez saved the goal, providing relief to Argentinian fans and players.
Argentina entered the Quarter-finals going against the Netherlands, a team they faced in the 2014 World Cup and eliminated them out of the final with Germany. Argentina encountered the same result with both teams tying and entering penalty shootouts. This time they both scored; Argentina scored with Nahuel Molina at minute 35 and Messi scoring a penalty at minute 73 and the Netherlands scored late goals at minute 83 and 90+11 with Weghorst scoring both. This game was the most extreme one and fans could tell there was a lot of history between both teams, this game's players received 18 yellow cards. With these results they entered a penalty shootout, where Emilio Martinez is quick to block goals from Virgil van Dijk and Steven Berghuis, Argentina scored the first three goals and on the fourth one, Enzo Fernandez misses, fortunately, Lautaro Martinez scored his penalty sending Argentina to the Semi-finals.
Argentina encountered another previous opponent who they played in the group stages of the 2018 World Cup in Russia. In that match, the scoreboard favored Croatia with a 3-0 match. In the 2022 World Cup, the scoreboard flipped favoring Argentina with a 3-0 match, with a penalty from Messi and 2 goals from Julian Alvarez. Messi does an incredible run dribbling by Gvardiol and provides Alvarez with his second goal. With this result, Argentina was once again in a World Cup final facing the previous 2018 winners France.
Argentina vs. France final was the most heart-racing and suspenseful final. Argentina led in the first half with a penalty from Messi, Argentina gives France a counterattack with Mac Allister making a run and at the last chance passes the ball to Angel Di Maria who scored a beautiful goal giving Argentina a great lead. In the second half things start to change, France was given a penalty which Kylian Mbappe scores, and just one minute later he was assisted by Marcus Thurman equalizing the game. Argentina once again entered extra time where Messi scores a tap-in at minute 108 but the lead is shortly tied with Kylian Mbappe scoring another penalty. France in the last minutes of extra time almost gets a lead with Kolo Muani getting a one-on-one with Emiliano Martinez, Emiliano spread himself to stop the shot providing an incredible and important save that allows Argentina to enter the penalty shootout. Emiliano once again was the start of the penalty kicks saving 2 goals; Argentina scored with Messi, Paulo Dybala, and Leandro Paredes. To finalize the score Gonzalo Montiel had to score the 4th penalty, which he does by hitting it on the bottom left corner of the net.
Argentina was the World Champions of the 2022 Fifa World Cup. A long-lived dream of Messi and his teammates and 5 million Argentinians who celebrated in the capital of Argentina, Buenos Aires. Argentinian players soon joined them parading around Buenos Aires in ‘La Scaloneta’ and showing the World Cup trophy.