Argentina vs France LIVE: World Cup final 2022 score and latest updates – Lionel Messi and Angel Di Maria goals as Kylian Mbappe in action at Lusail Stadium

Fans in Buenos Aires go wild as Di Maria gives Argentina 2-0 lead over France in WC final

Argentina face 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 Bleus aim 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, treatment 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 action in our live blog, below: 

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Argentina 2-0 France

54 mins: Adrian Rabiot takes down Rodrigo de Paul and collects the first yellow card of the match. Is that a sign of growing frustration from the French midfielder?

Michael Jones18 December 2022 16:20

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Argentina 2-0 France

51 mins: Nicolas Otamendi makes a mistake allowing Kylian Mbappe to win the ball and weave down the right side. He comes up against Enzo Fernandez inside the penalty area and earns France a corner.

Griezmann has the delivery but Emi Martinez shuffles into the middle of the box and plucks the ball out of the air with ease.

Michael Jones18 December 2022 16:14

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Argentina 2-0 France

48 mins: Chance! Another sweeping move from Argentina sees them transition up the pitch with speed. The ball comes out wide to Di Maria who curls a lofty ball across to Del Paul.

The midfielder meets the dropping ball on the volley and smokes a shot towards goal but Hugo Lloris gets in behind it and keeps the ball out.

Michael Jones18 December 2022 16:13

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Second half: Argentina 2-0 France

Kick off: Lionel Messi is 45 minutes away from becoming a World Cup winner. He gets the second half underway. There have been no further changes at the break with Didier Deschamps two first half subs the only difference to the starting line-ups.

Argentina pick up where they left off with Messi working the ball up to Alvarez. He feeds it across the pitch to De Paul who pulls the ball back ot Enzo Fernandez.

Fernandez dinks one into the box to match Alexis Mac Allister’s run but Hugo Lloris comes quickly off the line to claim the ball.

Michael Jones18 December 2022 16:09

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HT Argentina 2-0 France

France failed to register a shot on target or take a touch inside the opposition’s box during the first half. They were sorely lacking during the first 45 minutes and need to vastly improve in the next half.

Michael Jones18 December 2022 16:06

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HT Argentina 2-0 France

Lionel Messi is the first player to score in the group stage, round of 16, quarter-final, semi-final and final in a single edition of the World Cup.

With 12 goals and 8 assists, Messi’s 20 goal involvements are the most of any player on record at the World Cup (1966 onwards).

Michael Jones18 December 2022 16:01

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HT Argentina 2-0 France

…before Angel Di Maria added a second before the break.

(Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Michael Jones18 December 2022 15:58

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HT Argentina 2-0 France

Lionel Messi sent Argentina in front from the penalty spot…

(REUTERS)

(REUTERS)

Michael Jones18 December 2022 15:57

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Half-time: Argentina 2-0 France

45+7 mins: Advantage Argentina. The World Cup is firmly in the hands of Lionel Scaloni’s side as the two teams head down the tunnel for the half-time break.

A soft penalty gave Lionel Messi the opportunity to open the scoring and he obliged from the spot before Angel Di Maria converted a flowing counter-attack to double their lead.

Both players featured in the Argentina squad that lost the 2014 final to Germany. Will they be on the winning side this time around?

Michael Jones18 December 2022 15:52

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Argentina 2-0 France

45+3 mins: Emi Martinez boots an Argentina free kick high up the pitch. It’s one of the few touches the goalkeeper has made during this half.

The defending world champions haven’t troubled Argentina’s goal at all.

Michael Jones18 December 2022 15:48

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