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Mbappe brilliance inspires France past Argentina

World Cup
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Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi finally have rivals for the Ballon d'Or

ESPN's Dalton Cara captures the emotions of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, whose World Cup dreams ended on the same day.

MOSCOW -- There has been a passing of the baton at Russia 2018. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo remain the greatest footballers in the world, but if this World Cup has shown us anything, it is that a new wave of superstars have broken through to claim their place at the summit of the global game.

Messi and Ronaldo both exited this tournament at the round of 16. They both had their moments of brilliance in which they stamped their mark on the World Cup -- Ronaldo's hat trick against Spain and...

ESPN FC  By ESPN

Paul Pogba says Lionel Messi 'makes me love football more' after ending Argentina World Cup dream

Kylian Mbappe scored twice as France sent Lionel Messi and his Argentina side out of the World Cup in an enthralling match.
The FC panel put Argentina's World Cup exit into context and how it affects Lionel Messi's claim to be the greatest player of all time.
Day 17 of the World Cup, join Anthony Richardson and Ian Fiveankles as they say farewell to Messi and Ronaldo.
France's Kylian Mbappe outshone Lionel Messi in the round of 16 as France beat Argentina 4-3 in episode 18 of Project Russia.
Free-Kick: Goodbye Messi, Ronaldo; Enter 'teenage sensation' Kylian Mbappe
ESPN's Dalton Cara captures the emotions of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, whose World Cup dreams ended on the same day.
France denied Lionel Messi another chance at World Cup glory, storming back in the second half to defeat Argentina in a seven-goal thriller.
The World Cup is over for Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi after round of 16 defeats to Uruguay and France.

Paul Pogba paid tribute to Lionel Messi after France knocked Argentina out of the 2018 World Cup in Russia, saying: "I will always be united with him."

Les Bleus won the fraught round-of-16 encounter in Kazan 4-3 in what could potentially be the last-ever World Cup match for the 31-year-old Messi -- who has never won an international tournament -- but Pogba had nothing but praise for the Albiceleste captain.

"We know that we are playing against probably the best player in the world," the Manchester...

Should Lionel Messi's failure to win a World Cup affect his GOAT claim?

The FC panel put Argentina's World Cup exit into context and how it affects Lionel Messi's claim to be the greatest player of all time.
ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop thinks Lionel Messi will walk away from Argentina after their 4-3 World Cup defeat to France.

MOSCOW -- Is this the last we'll see of Lionel Messi on football's biggest stage, the World Cup? Argentina are out, and with them go a seemingly demoralized, I'd-rather-be-anywhere-than-Russia Lionel Messi. True, he did what he could in the round of 16 with two assists, including a beauty that lead to Kun Aguero's goal. But it wasn't enough. Not even close. 

And so the countdown begins. Lionel Messi will be 35 years and 208 days old on Dec. 18, 2022, the day he theoretically gets his next crack...

By the numbers: Messi and Ronaldo's knockout ducks; Kylian Mbappe emulates Pele

France's Kylian Mbappe outshone Lionel Messi in the round of 16 as France beat Argentina 4-3 in episode 18 of Project Russia.
ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop thinks Lionel Messi will walk away from Argentina after their 4-3 World Cup defeat to France.

Messi and Argentina out. Ronaldo and Portugal out. Who's next? Here are the most notable numbers from the first day of the knockout games.


0

Lionel Messi is yet to score from eight knockout games in World Cup history. Interestingly, his 23 shots in these matches without scoring are the second highest since 1966, behind Brazilian left-back Roberto Carlos, who had 29. He did register his fifth World Cup assist in the match, though, thus becoming only the third player alongside Thomas Muller and...

 By Sam Kelly

Lionel Messi 6/10, Marcos Rojo 4/10 as Argentina bow out to France

Kylian Mbappe scored twice as France sent Lionel Messi and his Argentina side out of the World Cup in an enthralling match.
ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop thinks Lionel Messi will walk away from Argentina after their 4-3 World Cup defeat to France.
ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop recaps France's thrilling 4-3 win over Argentina and thinks major changes are needed for the South American side.

Argentina exited the World Cup in a thrilling start to the knockout stage in Kazan, in a match in which both defences looked vulnerable but only Argentina's was seriously tested. For one of the oldest squads at Russia 2018, a rebuilding project is surely not far away, with another disappointing display from 2014's runners-up underlining the scale of the task at hand.

Positives

They've been put out of their suffering.

Negatives

A chaotic tactical setup which leaves serious question marks over Jorge...

ESPN FC  By ESPN

Lionel Messi must stay with Argentina despite World Cup exit - Mascherano

ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop thinks Lionel Messi will walk away from Argentina after their 4-3 World Cup defeat to France.
The FC panel put Argentina's World Cup exit into context and how it affects Lionel Messi's claim to be the greatest player of all time.
ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop recaps France's thrilling 4-3 win over Argentina and thinks major changes are needed for the South American side.

Argentina veteran Javier Mascherano urged star Lionel Messi to stay on with the Albiceleste despite Saturday's 4-3 World Cup round of 16 loss to France. 

Messi, who turned 31 during his fourth and possibly final World Cup, set up a pair of goals, but again failed to score in a knockout match at the biggest event in soccer. He did not speak to the media following the loss. 

And while his teammates, Javier Mascherano and Lucas Biglia, both announced their retirement from international duty,...