Argentina’s World Cup victory is sparked by a goal by Messi.

Messi had not previously scored in an elimination game during the World Cup.

Qatar’s AL RAYYAN — Despite all of his successes—and there are many—Lionel Messi has never scored a goal in an elimination match during a World Cup.

Now that he has, helping Argentina defeat Australia 2-1 on Saturday night with a goal in the first half, Messi still has a chance to make history by being the first player to ever lift the World Cup trophy.

Of course, a title is still a ways off. However, it still appears feasible if you squint your eyes like Messi did on Saturday night at Ahmad bin Ali Stadium as he sped past the Australian defence.

For 90 minutes, Messi, 35, resembled the Messi who demolished club competition across Europe for decades and made his World Cup debut at age 18.

As a result of its victory, Argentina will play the Netherlands on Friday in the quarterfinals. Then, if Argentina and one of those other teams can get to the final, they may face Brazil, as well as possibly France, Spain, or England.

After he overcomes a few more pressing obstacles, Messi aspires to perform his final act on the World Cup stage.

“I’m thrilled to have made further progress and to have accomplished yet another goal. Messi then made reference to the fact that Argentina’s final group stage game was three days prior and said it was an extremely tough and challenging contest. “We hadn’t had much time to recover up after our last game. We had some reservations about that.

Messi, the legendary attacker who marked his 1,000th appearance for club and country on Saturday, has been central to this period in Argentina’s World Cup history. Despite having logged so many miles on his legs, against Australia his skill still shone through.

Midfielder Alexis Mac Allister of Argentina passed to Nicolás Otamendi in the penalty area toward the end of the first half. Otamendi skillfully stopped and passed the ball to Messi in a smooth give-and-go. Messi took one dribble before firing a shot through the legs of an Australian defender and into the bottom left corner of the goal. The intense strain Argentina and Messi were under in Qatar, where they were competing in a tournament that got off to a shocking loss to Saudi Arabia, suddenly felt as like it had subsided.

Forward Julián lvarez described Messi as “impressive” in Spanish. “His performance throughout the entire game, especially in the closing seconds, was crucial, in addition to his goal. We are not surprised by it. Leo is someone we know, and we will always try to help him.

Fans in the stadium still bowed to Messi even after his scurrying move through the Australian defence in the 65th minute resulted in a corner kick and additional applause. Messi thanked the numerous Argentine supporters who made the trip to Qatar and cheered vociferously for him and the squad after the game.

He stated, “There is this bond, this union, that we have, and it’s amazing. It’s unbelievable how they live every single match, with their passion, their energy, and their delight. We are very appreciative.

Messi cannot carry Argentina to victory and further excite those fans on his own, though. He also got a glimpse of the type of assistance he will require in the 57th minute. Under pressure from two Argentine players, Australia goalkeeper Mathew Ryan waited too long while clearing a pass in front of his goal. lvarez punched the loose ball free, turned, and slid it into the open net.

Australia stepped increased its offensive in an effort to tie the match and make history by moving on to the quarterfinals. Aziz Behich dribbled by Argentina’s opponents in the 81st minute, but his close-range attempt was stopped. During extra time, Argentine goalkeeper Emiliano Martnez stopped Australian attacker Garang Kuol’s free-flowing effort. Up the field, Messi was relieved as his teammates jumped on top of him to celebrate.

He remarked, “That’s the World Cup for you.” These games are always tough, but we prevailed. And with that, Argentina and Messi made progress toward their objective.

courtesy :- USA news 

Lionel Andrés Messi

Leo Messi, commonly known as Lionel Andrés Messi (born 24 June 1987). He is an Argentine professional football player who heads the Argentina national team in addition to playing forward for Ligue 1 Club Paris Saint-Germain.

Widely recognised as one of the best players of all time, Messi has been nominated to the Ballon d’Or Dream Team in 2020 and has won a record seven Ballon d’Or honours, a record six European Golden Shoes, and seven European Golden Shoes.

He spent his entire professional career with Barcelona, retiring from the team in 2021 after winning a club-record 35 trophies there, including 10 La Liga championships, seven Copa del Rey championships, and four UEFA Champions Leagues.

Messi, a prolific goal scorer and inventive playmaker, owns the records for the most goals in La Liga, hat-tricks in La Liga and the UEFA Champions League, and assists in La Liga, the Copa América, and European league seasons.

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