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Wojciech Szczesny lost a €100 bet with Lionel Messi over controversial VAR penalty decision

Jack Kenmare

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Wojciech Szczesny lost a €100 bet with Lionel Messi over controversial VAR penalty decision

Poland goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny has jokingly said he will "probably get a ban" after spilling the beans on a €100 bet with Lionel Messi.

The 32-year-old goalkeeper was adjudged to have fouled Messi in the first-half of Wednesday's Group C clash between Poland and Argentina.

Despite there being minimal contract from the former Arsenal shot-stopper, who had every right to challenge for the ball, Argentina were awarded a penalty after a lengthy VAR check.

But seconds later, justice was served when Szczesny pulled off an impressive save to deny Messi from 12 yards.

 Szczesny pulls off a terrific save to stop Messi from opening the scoring in Doha. Image credit: Alamy
Szczesny pulls off a terrific save to stop Messi from opening the scoring in Doha. Image credit: Alamy

Alexis Mac Allister and Julian Alvarez would spare Messi's blushes in the second-half and, much to their relief, Poland managed to qualify by the narrowest of margins.

Everyone was in good spirits after the full-time whistle, including in-form Juventus goalkeeper Szczesny, who opened up about that penalty incident in an interview with TV 2 Sport.

You can see that chat with Norwegian journalist Arilas Ould-Saada below.

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Szczesny said: "We spoke before the penalty. I told him I'd bet €100 that he [the referee] wasn't going to give it. So, I've lost a bet against Messi.

"I don't know if that's allowed at the World Cup. I'm probably going to get banned for it. I don't care right now. I'm not going to pay him either. He doesn't care about €100, c'mon."

He certainly isn't short of confidence. In another post-match interview with TVP, the experienced Poland international claimed he always knew where Messi was going to place his shot.

"I immediately told the referee that I touched him (Messi) with my hand in the face, but I only hit him on the side of his face," Szczesny explained.

"I told him there was contact but I don't think there is a penalty. The referee decided otherwise and that's fine - I got to show off.

"Now I can say that I knew where Messi would shoot, but at the time I wasn't so sure. Leo looks at the keeper on some penalties and hits hard on others. I knew that if he was going to hit hard, it would be more to my left."

He added: "I saw that he was not stopping, so I went, I sensed, I defended. I'm happy because that penalty gave something in the end. Very big satisfaction. I owed it to the team."

Image credit: Alamy
Image credit: Alamy

Poland will face reigning champions France in the knockout stages on Sunday.

Featured Image Credit: Twitter/@tv2sport

Topics: Poland, Argentina, Lionel Messi, Football World Cup

Jack Kenmare
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