The exact moment Lionel Messi became a world champion and the undisputed GOAT of football
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Lionel Messi sunk to his knees in euphoria after becoming a World Cup winner with Argentina.
La Albiceleste sealed a third World Cup triumph on penalties after a breathtaking 3-3 draw with France at the Lusail Stadium in Qatar.
Messi struck twice, while his Paris Saint-Germain teammate Kylian Mbappe made history by becoming the first player to score a hat-trick in the final since Geoff Hurst in 1966.
Mbappe took the clash to penalties after he scored from the spot for a second time late in extra time, but Messi's destiny to become world champion was achieved after two France misses and a cool winning spot-kick from Gonzalo Montiel.
Cameras picked up the very moment Messi realised he had finally won the trophy which has evaded him throughout his career.
The captain was huddling with his teammates and as soon as he saw Montiel send Hugo Lloris the wrong way and roll the ball into the net, he dropped to the floor and his arms outstretched.
Messi was soon joined by Leandro Paredes, Marcos Acuna, Nicolas Otamendi and Enzo Fernandez in a wonderful embrace.
Messi's reaction the moment Argentina won the World Cup pic.twitter.com/5YKZQ96bSj— Xabhi ✪ (@FCB_Lad_) December 18, 2022
In lifting the World Cup trophy in his fifth and final tournament, Messi has completed football. He becomes the ninth player to win the Champions League, Ballon d'Or and World Cup - joining an exclusive list featuring Ronaldinho, Kaka, Rivaldo and Bobby Charlton.
For football fans, seeing Messi become a World Cup winner made for wonderful viewing - especially given the 2014 final defeat in Brazil to Germany in extra time.
However, many did express disappointment in the trophy lift. Argentina captain Messi was forced into wearing a traditional robe by FIFA president Gianni Infantino and Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.
It was just a tad awkward and with the cloak covering up his Argentina shirt, many felt it ruined such an iconic moment.
One fan wrote: "Infantino slapping a robe on Messi and then almost lifting the trophy with him. Such a joke, and genuinely ruined the beauty of the moment."
Still, Messi did get plenty of time with the trophy and it should be known that his 2022 World Cup campaign has been followed by cameras for a behind-the-scenes documentary.