Argentina's Lionel Messi sitting with his wife Antonella Roccuzzo after leading his side to victory in the World Cup final against France, at the Lusail Stadium in Qatar, on Sunday, December 18, 2022.
Argentina's Lionel Messi sitting with his wife Antonella Roccuzzo after leading his side to victory in the World Cup final against France, at the Lusail Stadium in Qatar, on Sunday, December 18, 2022.Suman Chattopadhyay/IANS

Messi wins Golden Ball, Mbappe gets Golden Boot

Doha, December 19, 2022

After a thrilling final saw Argentina beat France on penalties, the awards for the 2022 World Cup were also announced in which some of the biggest names in football were recognized, with Lionel Messi from Argentina confirmed as the best player at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.

The Argentinian forward won the Adidas Golden Ball, which is awarded to the best player by the FIFA Technical Study Group (TSG).

Kylian Mbappe from France and Luka Modric from Croatia came second and third, respectively.

Golden Ball -- Lionel Messi (Argentina)

This was Messi's World Cup -- and that was rubber-stamped as he was named the player of the tournament.

The 35-year-old finally got his hands on football's biggest prize, scoring seven goals enroute to hoisting the trophy high into the Qatar night.

He became the first man to score in the last 16, quarter-final, semi-final and final of the same edition and wins the individual accolade for a second time.

The Adidas Golden Boot was won by Kylian Mbappe, with 8 goals and 2 assists. Lionel Messi collected the Silver Boot and Olivier Giroud from France the Bronze.

Emiliano Martinez from Argentina collected the Adidas Golden Glove while England took the FIFA Fair Play award

Golden Boot -- Kylian Mbappe (France)

The France forward was level with Messi on five goals heading into the showdown in Lusail. He would go on to become the first man since Sir Geoff Hurst in 1966 to score a hat-trick in a World Cup final, tucking away two penalties and hitting a fine finish which took the game to extra-time.

It was not enough for France to retain the trophy but, with eight goals across the finals, he matched Ronaldo's total from 2002 and, at the age of 23, there could still be plenty more to come from Mbappe.

Young Player award -- Enzo Fernandez (Argentina)

There were plenty of contenders for the best young player in Qatar. Jude Bellingham would have been in the running had England not been eliminated in the quarter-finals while France's Aurelien Tchouameni was another candidate.

Fernandez, though, was superb throughout the finals, a tenacious and determined midfielder who is also good in possession and a driving force in Lionel Scaloni's Argentina at the tender age of 21.

Golden Glove -- Emiliano Martinez (Argentina)

The Aston Villa goalkeeper provided heroics in penalty shoot-out victories for Argentina against both Netherlands, where he saved two, and against France in the final where he kept out Kingsley Coman's effort to give his side the upper hand.

His presence was also obvious for all to see and his stunning one-on-one stop from Randal Kolo Muani prevented France securing a dramatic late win.

Fair Play award -- England

England did not leave Qatar empty-handed after all.

Gareth Southgate's side went the entire group stage without picking up as much as a booking and extended that run as they beat Senegal 3-0 in the last 16.

It was only in their quarter-final defeat to France where they troubled the referee's notebook as Manchester United captain Harry Maguire was cautioned in the closing stages with England chasing the game.

IANS

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