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The FIFA World Cup is a stage where legends are born and iconic moments etch themselves into football history. In the 2022 edition of the tournament held in Qatar, one name shone brighter than the rest - Kylian Mbappe. At the tender age of 23, the French football superstar left an indelible mark on the world's biggest football stage.
From setting records to scoring goals, Mbappe's performance was nothing short of exceptional. In this blog, we delve into Mbappe's remarkable journey, highlighting his achievements, statistics, and the potential milestones that lie ahead.
Group Stage Triumph:
France began their World Cup campaign with soaring confidence, securing two wins in their opening matches against Australia and Denmark. With victories of 4-1 and 2-1, respectively, Les Bleus amassed six points, topping their group with a superior goal difference. During these two victories, Mbappe showcased his prowess by netting three crucial goals, thrusting him to the top of the race for the Golden Boot.
Rising to the Top:
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Mbappe's goal-scoring spree continued as France progressed to the round-of-16, facing Poland. In this crucial match, the Paris Saint-Germain striker notched two goals, solidifying his position at the summit of the Golden Boot standings with a tally of five. His exceptional performances captured the attention of the footballing world, setting the stage for a tantalizing final against Argentina.
The Final Showdown:
In the eagerly anticipated final, Mbappe clashed with another footballing maestro, Lionel Messi. Messi gave Argentina the lead from the penalty spot, followed by Angel Di Maria doubling their advantage. However, Mbappe showcased his resilience, converting a penalty to pull one back and then sweeping home a second goal shortly after.
The Frenchman regained the lead in the goalscoring race, but Messi's strike in the second half of extra time leveled the playing field. The match ultimately ended in a 3-3 draw, leading to a penalty shootout. Mbappe converted his penalty, joining an elite group of players who have scored in two World Cup finals, including the likes of Vava, Pele, Paul Breitner, and Zinedine Zidane.
Impressive World Cup Scoring Stats:
At just 23 years old, Mbappe's World Cup journey has been nothing short of phenomenal. In his 14 appearances across two tournaments, he has already amassed an impressive tally of 12 goals. These numbers surpass the achievements of legendary French footballers Thierry Henry, who scored six goals, and Zinedine Zidane, who found the back of the net five times during their World Cup careers.
Furthermore, Mbappe's goal against Poland propelled him past Cristiano Ronaldo's tally of eight World Cup goals. The overall tournament record of 16 goals, held by Germany's Miroslav Klose, remains within reach for the young French sensation.
Chasing French National Team Records:
Mbappe's impact is not limited to the World Cup alone. In the match against Poland, he witnessed Olivier Giroud surpass Thierry Henry as France's all-time leading goalscorer with his 52nd international goal.
However, with 36 goals in 66 games for France, Mbappe has already overtaken the goal-scoring record of Zinedine Zidane, who scored 31 goals in 108 appearances. Given his youth and remarkable talent, Mbappe is on track to surpass Giroud and potentially become the most prolific player in the history of French football.
Highest Scoring Frenchman in a Single World Cup:
Mbappe's goal-scoring prowess was on full display during the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. He finished the tournament with an impressive tally of eight goals. In France's opener against Australia, Mbappe scored a crucial goal in their 4-1 victory. He followed it up with a brace against Denmark, securing a 2-1 win for the defending champions. The PSG forward continued his impressive form by notching another brace against Poland, propelling France to the quarter-finals.
His crowning moment came in the final against Argentina, where his hat-trick efforts forced extra time and a penalty shootout. Unfortunately, his heroic performance was in vain as Argentina emerged victorious. While Mbappe fell short of breaking Just Fontaine's record of 13 goals in a single World Cup, his dazzling display earned him well-deserved accolades.
Breaking Pele's Records:
In addition to his World Cup exploits, Mbappe has also surpassed the great Pele for the most goals scored in the tournament before the age of 24. Acknowledging Pele's critical illness, the young Frenchman extended his heartfelt wishes to the Brazilian legend through social media, paying homage to one of the game's finest players.
Kylian Mbappe's journey in the FIFA World Cup has been nothing short of spectacular. From his standout performances in the group stage to his heroic efforts in the final, Mbappe has left an indelible mark on the tournament's history. With an impressive goal-scoring record and numerous records broken, he has proven himself as one of the brightest talents in the world of football.
As Mbappe continues to mature and hone his skills, the future holds endless possibilities, and it wouldn't be surprising to witness him etching his name further into the annals of footballing greatness.