Kylian Mbappe announced himself as a global superstar to settle a stunning clash which will go down as one of the greatest in World Cup history
Wow. The World Cup that has had pretty much everything might just have delivered its defining moment.
France 4-3 Argentina. It was everything the scoreline suggested and more. Seven goals, wonderful entertainment, countless turning points, extraordinary goals galore.
And in the middle of it all, one superstar.
Not Lionel Messi either. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner was a passenger this time. His magic worked in getting Argentina to the finals in the first place but would not be repeated in Russia.
Instead, this was Kylian Mbappe’s breakout match.
At 19 years of age he delivered a truly stunning individual performance.
It was he who had Argentina rocking on their heels in the first half, his mesmeric direct running both with and without the ball leaving the opposition defence frightened to get near him. And when France needed a matchwinner after going behind briefly in the second period, his two goals ensured they go into the quarter-finals as the team to beat.
Mbappe’s electric pace set up the first goal, with a superb 60-yard dash being halted only when the Paris Saint-Germain star was hauled down by Marcos Rojo in the box. Antoine Griezmann stepped up to slot home from the spot.
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