World Cup final LIVE: Latest updates ahead of Argentina vs France

by: fifa2022newsnet


World Cup final: Messi trains with his team ahead of Argentina v France

Argentina play France in the World Cup final in Qatar as Lionel Messi faces one last chance to win football’s greatest prize. Messi’s final appearance at the World Cup could see the 35-year-old win the tournament for the first time, perhaps cementing his position as the greatest player in the history of the sport.

Standing in Messi and Argentina’s way are the defending champions France, as Les Bleusaim to become the first team in 60 years to win back-to-back World Cups. France forward Kylian Mbappe comes into the final level with Messi at the top of the golden boot standings on five goals, as two of the game’s biggest stars go head to head on the grandest stage.

It will decide a World Cup that has produced shocks and stunning moments on the pitch, while being dominated by controversy off the field in Qatar. But amid coverage of the host country’s human rights record, treatement of migrant workers and attitude to LGBTQ+ rights, Qatar has also been presented with a dream final where history will be made.

Will Messi achieve immortality by finally winning the World Cup, or can France spoil the party to defend their title? Follow all the build-up and action in our live blog, below: 


World Cup final 2022: Argentina vs France

Messi vs Mbappe sees immoral World Cup set for an immortal conclusion

Ahead of a fixture of such a scale that it can overcome most players, a figure as experienced as Didier Deschamps knows exactly what he needs to tell his squad. He’s been here before, after all, as a captain and then as the victorious manager in the last World Cup. Deschamps may have all the composure that comes with potentially being just the second coach in history to retain the trophy, but he is well aware that some players start to feel an anxious energy they can’t contain, with the knowledge that every individual could go down in history – for good or bad – infusing every moment.

As such, he of course tells the players to keep it simple. Individual roles are reduced to the most memorable missives. There is one common instruction, though.

“Get it to Kylian as soon as you can.”

That simple command for once has more complicated dimensions, since Kylian Mbappe is not the main gravitational force on this match. France cannot just leave the opposition to compromise their own play for their star. That is because there is a bigger star, a bigger gravitational force.

Lionel Messi has probably dominated the build-up to World Cup 2022 final more than any player has ever dominated any match in history.

It is as if it’s been scripted. Messi’s career might be building up to the greatest glory right at the end, after so much anguish, in what would be the perfect storyline.

Argentina vs France big match preview by Miguel Delaney

Jamie Braidwood18 December 2022 09:00


World Cup final 2022: Argentina vs France

Scaloni on Messi: “Let’s hope that if it’s Leo’s last game, that we can win the title. It would be great and the important thing is to enjoy it… What better scenario than in a World Cup final.”


Jamie Braidwood18 December 2022 08:45


World Cup final 2022: Argentina vs France

Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni kept his cards close to his chest when quizzed about his likely line-up to face holders France in the World Cup final.

“We already decided the strategy and we will play in a way in which we think we can hurt our rivals the most and suffer the least,” Scaloni told a news conference.

“We have our gameplan, we know how to play them and now we just have to execute, and I hope we can play a similar game as we did against the Netherlands in the quarter-finals – but win the match without having to go through the pain of a penalty shoot-out.”

“To stop Mbappe you need a collective effort. But France is more than just Mbappe. We need to focus on making a good game collectively,” Scaloni said.

“Sunday’s game is much more than Lionel Messi against Mbappe, it’s Argentina against France, it goes beyond that.

“We both have the necessary weapons so that the game can be decided by other players and not necessarily the two of them. Let’s hope it falls on our side, but there are plenty of players who can decide the game.”


Jamie Braidwood18 December 2022 08:30


World Cup final 2022: Argentina vs France early team news

Argentina have a similar selection dilemma to France off the back of changes in the semi-final, this time with full-backs Marcos Acuna and Gonzalo Montiel, who sat out the win over Croatia through suspension.

Nahuel Molina should keep his place, but Acuna could step in for Nicolas Tagliafico. Angel Di Maria should be approaching full fitness after injury and may push for a start, but Scaloni may preserve what has been an excellent midfield quartet.

Argentina XI: Martinez; Molina, Romero, Otamendi, Acuna; De Paul, Paredes, Fernandez, Mac Allister; Messi, Alvarez

France XI: Lloris; Kounde, Varane, Konate, T. Hernandez; Rabiot, Tchouameni; Dembele, Griezmann, Mbappe; Giroud

Jamie Braidwood18 December 2022 08:15


World Cup final 2022: Argentina vs France early team news

France’s selection headaches were eased on the eve of the World Cup final as their whole squad took part in training. Raphael Varane, Ibrahima Konate and Kingsley Coman, who missed training on Friday with a virus, were present at the start of Saturday’s session.

Meanwhile, Aurelien Tchouameni and left back Theo Hernandez, who also missed training on Friday because of knocks to heir hip and knee respectively, were also on the pitch with the rest of the squad.

Didier Deschamps must also evaluate both Adrien Rabiot and Dayot Upamecano after the pair missed the win over Morocco due to illness. Both will likely be fit to play, with Rabiot almost certain to replace his replacement against Morocco in Monaco midfielder Youssouf Fofana, but Liverpool’s Konate could keep his place after impressing once again at the back.

(Getty Images)

Jamie Braidwood18 December 2022 08:10


World Cup final 2022: Argentina vs France latest odds and prediction

This game has just about everything with immense quality all over the pitch and it could come down to a moment of pure genius from any of the world class talents available to Deschamps and Scaloni. For that reason we’ll side with Messi, a man possessed and surely determined to not let this rare second chance pass him by. He may have to wait until extra-time for his moment, but we’re picking Messi to drag his side to victory once again. Argentina 2-1 France AET.

Jamie Braidwood18 December 2022 08:05


World Cup final 2022: Argentina vs France TV channel and how to watch

When is Argentina vs France?

The game is scheduled to kick off at 3pm GMT (7pm local time) on Sunday 18 December.

The final will take place at the Lusail Stadium in Doha, Qatar.

The game will be shown live and free-to-air in the UK on BBC One, ITV 1 and STV 1.

You can watch a live stream on the BBC iPlayer, ITV X and STV Player, while the BBC Sport and ITV websites will also provide a live stream.

Jamie Braidwood18 December 2022 08:00


World Cup final: Argentina vs France

Welcome to our live build-up ahead of the World Cup final. It’s Argentina vs France, Lionel Messi vs Kylian Mbappe, Lionel Scaloni vs Didier Deschamps. We’ll have all the latest right here ahead of kick-off at 3pm GMT.

Lawrence Ostlere18 December 2022 07:38

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