Individual glory may be the furthest on Lionel Messi’s mind this coming Sunday, as Argentina take on France in their second World Cup final, in a bid to win the 35-year-old the only elusive title missing from a hall of fame career. But as Messi’s inspiring performances have taken his side to the final, his individual stats have risen.
The Argentine now has the chance to become the first player to be both a World Cup top scorer – the winner of the famous Golden Boot – and top assists. It’s a feat few have come close to – most recently Thomas Muller at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa where he was co-top scorer and assist, winning the golden boot due to fewer games played, but missing out on the top. assistant because Kaka had played lesser games than him.
Argentina’s Diego Maradona also came close in their triumph in 1986, leading the field with five assists, but his five goals fell short of England striker Gary Linekar’s six in the race for the golden boot.
The race for the two titles is heated and will get even more exciting in the final as each of the top contenders will play in the top battle. Messi is the joint top scorer with five goals alongside Paris Saint-Germain teammate Kylian Mbappé. Olivier Giroud and Julian Alvarez are also in the running with four. The Argentine skipper is with three top assistant assistants, in addition to Harry Kane, Bruno Fernandes and Antoine Griezmann,
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In the case of a tie, the tiebreaker is fewer games played, and since that will probably be identical as the protagonists play the final, it will be decided by fewer minutes played.
Top scorers at the 2022 FIFA World Cup:
Kylian Mbappe – 5 (six games, 477 minutes)
Lionel Messi – 5 (six matches, 570 minutes)
Olivier Giroud – 4 (five games, 383 minutes)
Julian Alvarez – 4 (six games, 364 minutes)
Top assistants at the 2022 FIFA World Cup:
Bruno Fernandes – 3 (four games, 357 minutes)
Harry Kane – 3 (five games, 402 minutes)
Antoine Greizmann – 3 (six games, 467 minutes)
Lionel Messi – 3 (six games, 570 minutes)