Controlling midfield alone was not enough to win the game and Croatia played up front. Corner for them in the 38th minute. But he did the opposite. Croatia made a mistake by taking a short corner. Christian Romero punched the ball to Messi. Although Essi was fouled, he had already given the ball to Alvarez. Alvarez run from his own half. The Croatian defenders were confused, thinking Alvarez would pass the ball to Molina or De Paul when he reached the box. It was Alvarez who stamped his feet and recovered the ball. Messi rushed to embrace the ball as Alvarez threw it into Livakovic’s hands.
The real moment came in the 69th minute. Alvarez threw the ball through the Croatian defender’s legs. Alvarez only had the task of bringing him straight back into goal. Croatia conceded defeat.
Argentinian striker Alvah…res!!
Julian Alvarez, who scored 2 goals for Argentina and was responsible for the penalty that led to the team’s first goal, was the star of the match against Croatia. The 22-year-old Alvarez’s main job was to advance with through balls provided by defenders and midfielders. In the 33rd minute, Croatia conceded a penalty as they tried to stop Alvarez’s run towards the box. In the 40th minute a run from midfield gave Argentina their second goal.
Messi’s record rain in the semifinals
Lionel Messi is now the player to score the most World Cup goals for Argentina. Messi scored his 11th World Cup goal against Croatia. Gabriel Batistuta’s record of 10 goals has been surpassed.
Lionel Messi joins former Germany star Lothar Mathews’ record for the most appearances by a player at the World Cup. Both played 25 World Cup matches each.
The 35-year-old Messi became the oldest player to score 5 goals in a World Cup.
Lionel Messi is the first player to achieve this feat in 4 World Cup games in terms of goals and assists in one game. Messi scored a goal and an assist against Serbia in 2006 and against Mexico, the Netherlands and Croatia at this World Cup.
Lionel Messi equals former Brazilian star Ronaldo’s record for most assists on goals in World Cup matches. Both had one goal and one assist in 13 games.
In the 30th minute Croatia conceded a penalty following a defensive error which changed the course of the match. Julian Alvarez, advanced on the break, was fouled in the box by Croatian goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic and the penalty was awarded. It was at this time that the match turned into control of Argentina. Until then, Croatia’s midfield dominated the match. Messi gave Argentina the lead by scoring the penalty following a brilliant mistake by Livakovic in recent games.
English summary: Vintage Messi and Alvarez take Argentina to the final