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The duel of the superstars: Messi against Mbappé

Erling Haaland is one of the most outstanding contemporary footballers. However, he doesn’t have a nationality that will allow him to play in a World Cup final. So Messi vs Mbappé is the best thing you can experience at this level. The duel between two offensive players, in which the age difference of 11.5 years does not matter. The two jointly lead the World Cup goalscorers list with five goals each.

Lionel Messi will turn 36 next June, but the diminutive Argentine continues to score goals outside the World Cup. In Qatar it was not with a goal that he gave the most impressive testimony of excellence that sets him apart from the crowd. But with preparation. In the semi-final against Croatia he played and fought his way down the right wing from a hopeless position. He played the ball on Julian Alvarez’s foot in such a way that he could easily make it 3-0. It was a stroke of genius for which no words can replace moving images.

Messi is only missing the world title

Lionel Messi has been named World Player of the Year six times, more than anyone else. It’s probably only a matter of time before Kylian Mbappé receives the high honor for the first time. The 23-year-old has something decisive ahead of his club colleague from Paris Saint-Germain: Mbappé was able to call himself world champion for four years.

The gold trophy for the world champion is Lionel Messi’s dearest object. It’s actually the only thing he needs before he can retire with all of his fame.

Messi has also said several times that he would trade all his personal titles and awards for a World Cup triumph. Had he been successful, “La Pulga” would have finally risen to the level of his idol Diego Maradona. ‘El Pibe de Oro’, who passed away two years ago, led Argentina to their second and last world title in 1986.

Messi’s numbers

Messi has won 37 club titles, including Olympic gold with Albiceleste in 2008 and last year’s Copa America. In 1,002 matches he scored 791 goals and 350 assists, in the national team he has 171 international caps and 96 goals unrivaled. He will play his 26th world championship match on Sunday, making him the record holder ahead of Lothar Matthäus.

Mbappé still can’t come up with numbers like that. Apart from the 2018 World Cup title and winning the 2021 Nations League with the national team, the striker at club level has “only” won five national championships and three cup victories. He is still waiting for an entry into the Champions League winners list. However, he could lift the top-flight cup within months, alongside Lionel Messi, who has won the club’s top competition four times.

When Messi won the Champions League for the first time in 2006, Mbappé covered his bedroom walls with posters of his idol Cristiano Ronaldo.

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