Argentina beat Croatia at Lusail Stadium to advance to the World Cup final for the sixth time, thanks in large part to Lionel Messi's stellar performance. Messi now has one more chance to win the title that has eluded him throughout his title-filled career, but Manchester City's 22-year-old Julian Alvarez also shined as the Argentinian assured them they would return. here on Sunday to play against France or Morocco.
Messi looked like he had a hamstring problem at first, but after 34 minutes, when Croatia goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic fouled Alvarez, Messi recovered just in time to score from the spot. After receiving Messi's header in the Croatian half, Alvarez increased Argentina's advantage five minutes later. He then overcame Livakovic thanks to lucky own goals from Josip Juranovic and Borna Sosa. After the first half, Messi hypnotized Croatia star defender Josko Gvardiol on the touchline before passing the ball to Alvarez to score the winning goal.
Argentina's Lionel Messi will play in Qatar's World Cup final on Sunday as he is just 90 minutes away from winning the highest honor of having a World Cup permanently associated with his name.