World Cup 2022 Conclusion – Argentina Defeats France In Epic Finals Matchup 

What a World Cup! The 22nd installment of FIFA’s World Cup Soccer Tournament ended in exciting fashion with Argentina defeating France in a game that had everything a soccer (or football) fan can ask for! There were goals by Lionel Messi and Ángel Di María for Argentina, a hat trick by France’s Kylian Mbappé, nerve-racking goal saves from both Hugo Loris (FRA) and Emiliano Martinez (ARG), the French coming back from being down 2-0 to tie the game 2-2 towards the end of regulation, and a 3-3 tie at the end of extra time! The match came down to the Argentinians winning 4-2 on penalty kicks. Phew! What a game.

This could very well be THE BEST World Cup Finals match in the history of the World Cup. Sure, some will say it’s recency bias, but take a look at the history and compare. You had the defending champions, France, with the new-young superstar, trying to become only the third team to repeat (Italy in 1934 and 1938; Brazil in 1958 and 1962), taking on the legendary – and aging – superstar player playing in his last World Cup match. In addition to battling for the Cup itself, Messi and Mbappé were battling for the Golden Boot award, given to the player who scores the most goals in the tournament. In the end, Mbappé finished with 8 goals and Messi with 7. You had the previously mentioned goalkeepers, Loris and Martinez, trading goal saves that gave their country hope. Only time will tell where this Finals match ranks on the All-time list. Either way, it was well-worth the watch!

Aside from the final game, this 2022 tournament provided many surprises… and upsets too. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia won their first preliminary match against Argentina by a score of 2-1. That ranks as one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history. At the same time, it appears that was the wakeup call Argentina needed to get them on track and focused.  Let’s not forget Germany, Mexico, Belgium, and Uruguay, FIFA powerhouses who didn’t even make it out of the group play stage. And we must talk about Morocco! Led by Midfield Defender Achraf Hakimi, Goalkeeper Yassine Bounou, and Forward Hakim Zivech, they became the first African nation to make it to the semifinals. The Moroccan national team upset Belgium in Group play, upset Spain in the Round of 16, and upset the Portugal team in the Quarterfinals. They lost to France in the Semifinals, and also lost to Croatia in the 3rd Place Playoff game. Ironically, they played Croatia in their first match of Group play, which resulted in 0-0 tie. Watch out for this team come 2026!

Thank you, Qatar, for hosting one of the most entertaining World Cups of All-time! Let’s see how Mexico, Canada, and the United States follow-up as they host the next one. See you in 4 years soccer fans!

[Featured Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay / Messi Image by Luis David Revueltas from Pixabay]

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