Online Desk: Lionel Messi on Sunday (December 18) won the Golden Ball for the best player at this year’s World Cup after leading Argentina to victory in the final against defending champions France.
Messi, 35, scored twice in the final in Doha, taking his tally of goals at the tournament to seven, and also scored in the shoot-out as Argentina beat France 4-2 on penalties following a 3-3 draw after extra time.
Messi is the first player to score in the group stage and all four rounds in the knockout phase.
France striker Kylian Mbappe won the World Cup Golden Boot award with eight goals after scoring a hat-trick in the final match.
Mbappe became just the second man to score three times in a World Cup final after England’s Geoff Hurst in 1966 and finished one goal ahead of Lionel Messi, named as the tournament’s best player.
The 23-year-old has scored 12 World Cup goals in 14 matches and is level with Brazil legend Pele in sixth on the all-time list.
Mbappe is only the second player to find the target in successive World Cup finals after Vava, who scored in Brazil’s wins in 1958 and 1962.
Luka Modric came third in the running for the best player after helping Croatia finish third.
Meanwhile, Argentina’s Emiliano Martinez took the Golden Glove for the World Cup’s best goalkeeper, while his compatriot Enzo Fernandez, 21, was named the best young player.
Argentina’s victory over France saw them claim the World Cup for the third time following their triumphs in 1978 and 1986._Agencies