Argentina fans in Toronto celebrate their thrilling World Cup win over France

Canadian football Fans formed a frozen formation before dawn, painted their faces and finally set off for a wild ride on Sunday as they packed bars for a particularly intense World Cup final.

But it was Argentina’s fans who finally got to celebrate after the team led by superstar Lionel Messi won the penalty shootout.

At the Diplomatico cafe in Toronto Small neighborhood in Italy, fans in a packed tent shouted and jumped as Argentina won the championship, hugging and waving flags. Music filled the tent and fans danced to celebrate, with many shouting Messi’s name.

“It’s a perfect representation of this beautiful match,” said Argentina fan Ian Saya as he celebrated the win.

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FIFA 2022: Lionel Messi won the World Cup, Argentina beat France on penalties

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“It makes you laugh, it makes you cry, it makes you laugh, it makes you lose your voice.”

Argentina’s victory in football’s decisive match was particularly difficult.

Argentina’s jubilant fans, buoyed by their team’s two goals in the first half of the regulation match, watched in dismay as World Cup champions France own their own goal to equalize 2-2 in the second half. .

After each side scored one goal in extra time, Argentina eventually won the penalty shootout.

Saya, who was at the front and center watching the match with his face painted blue and white, said he experienced many emotions in the final half hour of the match.

Longtime Argentina fans Shehzad Merali and Harneet Brar said just before the second half that winning the World Cup would secure a major career milestone for Messi, 35, who has never won a World Cup before. there and scored twice on Sunday.

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After the game, Merali said the win cemented Messi’s legacy.

“Everybody says he’s not the greatest player of all time because he’s never won a World Cup,” Merali said.

“What will they say now?”

Camila Schiappacasse, who arrived in Canada two weeks ago from Argentina, was waiting outside the bar when the match started. She said she cried at Messi’s first goal and hoped for the final result.

Then, with the Argentine flag slung over her shoulder, she described the match as “tense”.

“In Argentina, you suffer to win,” she said. “You don’t win easily.”

On the other hand, the largely pro-France crowd at downtown Montreal bar L’barouf was disappointed.

Some fans were in tears as they left the venue.

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“Honestly, I’m sad,” Alexis Krass said of France’s loss.

“My heart hurts. 15 minutes I finally had hope. But it wasn’t meant to be.”

France’s supporters – subdued after their team was left empty-handed in the first half – expressed optimism that the team could bounce back.

That optimism seemed to have paid off in the second half of the regulation game as France scored twice in a row. The gathered fans burst into cheers and some even cried when the team drew.

“This is unbelievable! We will win,” predicted Thibault Herbert.

But it didn’t happen. Extra time saw France once again face Argentina from goal until the decisive penalty shootout.

Kylian Mbappé scored a hat trick for France and was eventually named top scorer at the tournament in Qatar, but the injury was comforted on the pitch by French President Emmanuel Macron after the final.

— With records from Marisela Amador in Montreal and The Associated Press

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