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Qatar 2022: World Cup greatest gift of my career, says Argentina captain Messi

Soccer Football - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 - Final - Argentina v France - Lusail Stadium, Lusail, Qatar - December 18, 2022 Argentina's Lionel Messi kisses the World Cup trophy after receiving the Golden Ball award as he celebrates after winning the World Cup REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Argentina captain Lionel Messi has always believed he would win the World Cup.

After a dramatic penalty shootout victory over France, the No.10 says he knew that God would reward him with the ultimate prize in Qatar.

“It’s impressive that I can finish like this,” Messi told reporters. “I knew that at some point God was going to give it to me and I don’t know why, but I felt it was going to be like this. Once again he made me very happy.”

Messi noted that the match with France was “very strange” given how the European side equalized twice, comparing it to the match against the Netherlands in the quarter-finals.

“We wanted it, but it finally came,” said Messi shortly after raising the World Cup to the sky. “We suffered a lot, but we did it. We can’t wait to be in Argentina to see how crazy it’s going to be.”

Despite accomplishing so much in his career, Messi recognized that being world champion is the greatest thing to happen in his career.

“There is nothing after this. What else can there be after winning the Copa America and the World Cup near the end of my career,” he added.

“But on the other hand, I love football, I enjoy what I do, I enjoy the national team. Everyone wants this trophy, it’s everyone’s childhood dream. I was lucky enough to have achieved everything in my career and now this is going home to enjoy it with you.”

Messi added that he isn’t retiring from the Argentine national team after winning the World Cup in Qatar.

“I am not retiring from the national team,” he said. “I want to continue playing for Argentina to honor the title of world champion. It is the title I was missing and here it is. It’s crazy. It’s been a long wait.”

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