Lionel Messi's Argentina win the 2022 FIFA World Cup in penalty shootout after thrilling 3-3 draw with France

Argentina have won their third World Cup in extraordinary style, beating France 4-2 in a penalty shootout after Lionel Messi scored twice in a 3-3 draw that featured a hat-trick for Kylian Mbappe as the holders recovered from 2-0 down after 80 minutes.

It was an incredible night of drama and fluctuating fortunes, delivering one of the all-time great finals to cap a wonderful tournament.

Argentina had looked to be cruising to a one-sided victory after Messi's penalty and a brilliant goal by Angel Di Maria in the first half put them in total control, but Mbappe converted an 80th-minute penalty and volleyed in an equaliser a minute later to take the game to extra time.

Messi put Argentina ahead again but Mbappe levelled with another penalty, becoming the second man to score a World Cup final hat-trick after Geoff Hurst for England 1966.

That took the game to a shoot-out where Argentina keeper Emiliano Martinez saved Kingsley Coman's penalty and Aurelien Tchouameni fired wide to give Gonzalo Montiel to chance to win it, which he gleefully took.

It meant that after his record 26th World Cup match, at the fifth and final time of asking, the 35-year-old Messi finally claimed the trophy that he and his nation demanded, lifting him up alongside Diego Maradona after the country's first football God carried them to their emotional second triumph in 1986 following their first in 1978.

"It's just crazy that it became a reality this way," Messi, who has played 172 times for his country, said.

"I craved for this so much. I knew God would bring this gift to me. I had the feeling that this [World Cup] was the one.

"I wanted to close my career with this, it was the one that was missing so I can no longer ask for anything else.

Later, he said: "I can't wait to be in Argentina to witness the insanity of this."

France coach Didier Deschamps said the team "came back from the brink, that's what gives us so many regrets".

"I still congratulate them, they played a great game, with a bit of gamesmanship, but we were expecting that and it does not take any merit from their victory," he said.

"[Mbappe] wanted to make his mark on this World Cup. He did, but not as much as he wanted."


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Story first published on ABC News

Dan Colasimone with wires, ABC News