Lionel Messi scored one goal and created one in the FIFA World Cup semi-final vs Croatia© AFP
Lionel Messi is now just one step away from attaining footballing immortality as he fired his beloved Argentina to the final of the 2022 FIFA World Cup with a performance for the ages in the semi-final against Croatia. After scoring from the penalty spot to give his team a 1-0 lead, which also made him his country’s highest goalscorer in World Cup history, Messi produced a trademark run from the half-way line to kill the game in the second half as Julian Alvarez scored from his assist to make it 3-0 for the Albiceleste.
The goal was Alvarez’s second of the night, after he had made 2-0 for Argentina in the first half, with his own solo effort.
Messi received the ball just a little ahead of the half-way line on the right flank and ran with the ball to the side of the penalty box with the young Croatian defender Josko Gvardiol giving him company all through. Just when it seemed like Messi would not be able to shake off the young defender, he took a turn away from the goal and with seconds switched back to leave Gvardiol wrong footed.
Watch video of Lionel Messi’s run and assist for Argentina’s third goal against Croatia
by far the best video i’ve ever taken #messi pic.twitter.com/vJglh088Dr
— Connor Kalopsis (@ConnorKalopsis) December 13, 2022
The Argentine then ran along the touchline and squeezed in a pass inside the penalty box to Julian Alvarez, who slotted in his second goal of the night to make it 3-0 for Argentina.
Messi has now reached his second World Cup final along with Argentina, having finished runners-up in 2014 to Germany.
A victory in the final will give him the biggest prize in football along with his several accolades at the club level.
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