Lionel Messi: PSG and Argentina Star Opens Up on Emi Martinez’s World Cup Winning Save From Randal Kolo Muani

Lionel Messi: PSG and Argentina Star Opens Up on Emi Martinez’s World Cup Winning Save From Randal Kolo Muani

  • Lionel Messi has opened up on how important 'that Emi Martinez save' was in the World Cup final
  • Martinez kept Argentina in the game by saving a shot from Randal Kolo Muani with only a few seconds left
  • Messi has admitted that watching the replays of how close the World Cup dream almost slipped away haunts him

Lionel Messi has continued to divulge details on how Argentina masterminded their World Cup triumph in Qatar. Messi completed football by winning every available trophy to him after guiding his nation to World Cup victory on December 18th against France.

But apart from all the fanfare surrounding him as the team's leader and star player, Argentina's goalkeeper Emi Martinez pulled a series of amazing stops to help the team on its course. Of all the saves, none was better and important as a last-ditch save from Randal Kolo Muani.

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Lionel Messi, PSG, Argentina, Emi Martinez, Randal Kolo Muani, World Cup final, France
Emi Martinez saves from Randal Kolo Muani during the World Cup final between Argentina and France on December 18th. Photo by Sebastian Frej/MB Media.
Source: Getty Images

That Emi Martinez save

Argentina and France were gridlocked in a feisty affair at the Lusail Stadium. Lionel Scaloni's side thought they had wrapped it up in the first half with Angel Di Maria on a class of his own.

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However, moments of Kylian Mbappe's masterclass pegged them back to force them into extra time. Messi delivered once again by scoring Argentina's third goal only for Mbappe to respond in kind to restore parity once again.

With only a few seconds left on the clock, Kolo Muani was set through in goal. With the Argentina defence well beaten, all the forward needed to do was to pick either side of Martinez and France could have retained the trophy they won in 2018.

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So big was the chance that France's substitutes and technical bench jumped on the pitch as Kolo Muani received the ball. Enter Martinez. The Aston Villa custodian drew a point-blank save with his legs to keep Kolo Muani's effort out.

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Messi's thoughts on Martinez's save

Reflecting on the chance, Messi said:

"It was so fast that I didn't experience it as it really was. Then came the one from Lautaro. I suffered more watching the videos than with the play," as quoted by Diario Ole.

Martinez then saved Argentina in the penalty shootout by saving Kingsley Coman's effort. He was awarded the best goalkeeper of the tournament.

Messi regrets World Cup celebrations

Sports Brief has also reported that Messi expressed remorse about his uncharacteristically rude behaviour toward the Dutch national team at the 2022 World Cup.

Argentina qualified ahead of the Netherlands in a tempestuous quarterfinal clash which saw a record 18 yellow cards and one red dished out.

After the game, Messi showed off his ugly side by aiming angry words at Dutch striker Wout Weghorst.

Source: Sports Brief News