The internet exploded last night after Lionel Messi produced one of his best-ever performances in a World Cup semi-final triumph over Croatia.
At 35 years old Messi is still as competitive as ever and he rolled back the years with an outrageous assist in the second half to set up Julian Alvarez.
The result for Argentina means that they will play one of France or Morocco in the final on Sunday. The game will be Messi’s second World Cup final of his career after also reaching this point in 2014.
Fans and pundits alike were quick to praise Messi after the match. ITV pundit Roy Keane explained: “Do you know what, it’s a pleasure to watch him live, it really is.
“Obviously we played at a really good level, but the level he’s at, against his age, even the third goal, he’s doing that against some brilliant players, really good players.
“Honestly, it’s brilliant. Absolutely fantastic. What a player, and do you know what, I really hope he goes on to win the World Cup. I think that would be the icing on the cake for the man. He’s just fantastic, consistent.
“Listen, we’d be here all night talking about the awards he’s won. He’s lifted that group of players. They’ve had a couple of setbacks already. The reaction after giving up the two-goal lead against Holland to me summed up that team. They were on their knees but they found a way to win the game.”
Ian Wright then added: “In 2014, I think he was player of the tournament in that one. Didn’t quite work out for him in 2018.
“The pressure he’s come into this one with, maybe his last one, people talking about the team, are they good enough, losing the first game – saw that happen with Spain in South Africa and then getting to the final. Obviously, Spain went over the line.
“I think the manager got it totally right today, his tactics, nullifying their midfield and keeping it narrow.”
We’ve searched the internet and found some of the best post-match reactions from Argentina’s convincing 3-0 win over Croatia in the World Cup semi-final.
by far the best video i’ve ever taken #messi pic.twitter.com/vJglh088Dr
— Connor Kalopsis (@ConnorKalopsis) December 13, 2022
Messi’s reaction to seeing Aguero presenting him the MOTM award is priceless 🤣🤣 pic.twitter.com/RCYCdvctN7
— Ryan (@bernardooooV3) December 14, 2022
Is there still a debate? Asking for a goat.
— Gary Lineker 💙💛 (@GaryLineker) December 13, 2022
Better than Maradona?
I’ve changed my opinion! It was Maradona but Seeing Messi I am convinced he’s the greatest that we have seen in my lifetime. Pure Magic . GOAT 👍🏻🇦🇷
— John Hartson (@JohnHartson10) December 13, 2022
Scenes from Argentina
— Sacha Pisani (@Sachk0) December 14, 2022
Just noticed this. For that second brilliant #JulianAlvarez goal Julian Alvarez almost ran the whole length of the pitch. He was actually defending a corner in his own half before making that rampaging run with the ball through the Croatia defence. What a player. #WorldCup2022 pic.twitter.com/VzcXvdj72n
— Shiva Chettri (@shivachettri) December 14, 2022
One of a kind
Genuinely, how were people so stubborn to think Messi wasn’t the GOAT?
This guy does things with a ball that no one can do (barring Maradona)
— Rimedi (@r1medi) December 13, 2022
A beautiful moment
This interview with Messi is beautiful.. pic.twitter.com/eVxJXuqJwc
— J. (@Messilizer) December 14, 2022
Dressing room scenes
The Argentina dressing room after their win against Croatia #FIFAWorldCup pic.twitter.com/JuDmFSJZdV
— Roberto Rojas (@RobertoRojas97) December 13, 2022
Luka Modric respect
Luka Modric getting a standing ovation by Croatia AND Argentina fans. He is truly special man. pic.twitter.com/PNRGAXpnMu
— WolfRMFC (@WolfRMFC) December 13, 2022
To every Messi fan out there that I’ve ever argued with, I am so sorry. He’s the greatest player ever.
— ًE. (@UtdEIIis) December 13, 2022
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