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Bayern Munich have condemned racist abuse suffered by Kingsley Coman in the aftermath of France's penalty shoot-out defeat against Argentina in the World Cup final.

Coman was introduced as a 71st-minute substitute with France 2-0 down on Sunday, making a positive impact as Kylian Mbappe's hat-trick helped Les Bleus force spot-kicks at the end of a pulsating 3-3 draw.

However, the winger was the first player to fail to convert in the shoot-out as Emiliano Martinez made a strong save to his right, before midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni put France's next kick wide.

Coman was subjected to discriminatory messages on social media following France's 4-2 shoot-out defeat, prompting his club to denounce those involved.

A statement issued via the Bundesliga champions' Twitter account read: "FC Bayern strongly condemn the racist comments made towards Kingsley Coman.

"The FC Bayern family is behind you, King. Racism has no place in sport or our society."

On the eve of the World Cup, the French Football Federation condemned racist messages addressed to midfielder Eduardo Camavinga following suggestions he was responsible for an injury suffered by Christopher Nkunku in training.

Karim Benzema has retired from international football after sitting out France's run to the World Cup final due to injury.

The Real Madrid striker, who won the Ballon d'Or in October, announced the decision to end his career with Les Bleus on his 35th birthday.

He wrote on Twitter: "I made the efforts and the mistakes it took to be where I am today and I'm proud of it!

"I have written my story and ours is ending."

Benzema was ruled out of the Qatar 2022 finals on the eve of the tournament after suffering a thigh injury in a France training session.

 

Leading documentary director Asif Kapadia wants to bring a Lionel Messi movie to life.

Messi won the World Cup with Argentina on Sunday, with La Albiceleste triumphing 4-2 over France on penalties following a thrilling 3-3 draw at Lusail Stadium in Qatar.

The World Cup was the final trophy missing from Messi's vast collection, and now the 35-year-old has surely ended the debate as to who is the greatest player of his generation.

Messi scored seven goals and contributed three assists across his sensational campaign in Qatar, and there are sure to be no shortage of offers for his story to be taken to the silver screen.

But Kapadia perhaps has the edge, given his critically acclaimed previous documentaries - Senna, about the life and death of the Formula One driver Ayrton Senna, Amy (a film focusing on Amy Winehouse's rise to fame) and Diego Maradona.

The latter, released in 2019, told the story of Argentina's previous magical number 10, a player Messi has now matched in winning the World Cup, as Maradona did in 1986. 

"Pardon me, but I feel I should put this out there," tweeted Kapadia on Monday.

"Dear #LionelMessi, I know you're probably busy and need a holiday, but If you're interested in having your epic story told at some point, I'm definitely interested & available!"

Eddie Howe laughed off Alan Shearer's suggestion that Newcastle United should sign Argentina's World Cup star Enzo Fernandez.

Fernandez won the Young Player Award at Qatar 2022 following his excellent performances in midfield for La Albiceleste, who beat France on 4-2 on penalties in a thrilling final on Sunday.

Kylian Mbappe scored a hat-trick at Lusail Stadium on Sunday, but it was Lionel Messi and Argentina who came out on top in the shoot-out after a 3-3 draw.

Benfica's Fernandez was one of the breakout stars at the tournament, featuring in all seven of Argentina's games and starting five, having scored a stunning goal in a 2-0 win over Mexico in the group stage.

Newcastle great Shearer, a BBC Sport pundit during the World Cup, quipped he would love the cash-rich Magpies to make a move for the 21-year-old, saying: "Absolutely yes. See if he wants to play against Bournemouth on Tuesday."

Naturally, ahead of that EFL Cup tie, Howe was quizzed on whether he had heard Shearer's comments.

"Sorry, I didn't, I think I was on the other channel," Howe said with a smile. "That's a mistake on my part."

Asked if he would like to target Fernandez, Howe replied: "I'm aware of him and I know him. But I think the transfer fee might be quite lumpy."

 

Howe also noted it would be unlikely that any team buys a player based solely off their World Cup displays.

"From a recruitment perspective you never just analyse a World Cup and sign a player on the back of those performances," he said.

"There's a huge body of work that goes into signing a player, it’s never after four weeks. There's a period of work that goes into it. It's not to say we wouldn't use the World Cup as a recruitment tool."

Howe, who also dismissed the idea Newcastle would move for Messi in January should the 35-year-old be available, is also pleased that England manager Gareth Southgate has elected to stay on with the Three Lions following their World Cup exit.

Southgate will take charge of England heading into Euro 2024, with Howe having often been cited as a possible replacement.

"The only time it affects me is sat here [in front of the media]," Howe said.

"I'm pleased Gareth made his decision so I don't have to field questions on it.

"My focus has only ever been Newcastle and making sure that we return from this break in the best possible form we can. I'm enjoying the job and loving the challenge of managing this huge club."

After playing Bournemouth, Newcastle, who sit third in the Premier League, face Leicester City on Boxing Day in their first top-flight game after the World Cup break.

Lionel Messi emerged from the shadow of his fellow Argentinian 'phenomenon' Diego Maradona by leading his country to World Cup glory, says 1994 runner-up Arrigo Sacchi.

Messi clinched the World Cup Golden Ball after producing a series of talismanic displays in Qatar, scoring seven goals and adding three assists during a dream campaign.

The seven-time Ballon d'Or winner scored twice in Sunday's thrilling final against France, also converting in the subsequent penalty shoot-out as he became the first Albiceleste captain to lift the trophy since Maradona in 1986.

Sacchi, whose great Milan side battled with Maradona's Napoli in the 1980s, refused to compare the two Argentina greats but was delighted to see Messi replicate his compatriot's success.

"When Messi raised the World Cup to the sky, his eyes were wet with tears," Sacchi, who led Italy to the 1994 final, wrote in La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"I thought of Leo's entire journey, of what he won with Barcelona, of his dribbling, of his goals, of his acrobatics, of the many Ballon d'Ors he placed on the bulletin board. 

"Then, however, there was that sort of curse which he could not shrug off. Too often he was forced to play with the shadow of Maradona weighing on his shoulders.

"Too often they asked him what he could not give, and then he felt sad. He felt the responsibility to give happiness to an entire people and the fact of not succeeding in it pained him. 

"Now all of Argentina is at his feet. I don't feel like saying whether or not he has reached Maradona's level.

"I don't agree with these comparisons between champions who belong to different eras of football. 

"What I know is that Maradona was a phenomenon, and I knew him well, and I know that Messi is too, albeit in a different way."

Didier Deschamps said a virus in the France squad impacted their woeful start to Sunday's World Cup final, though he stopped short of blaming it for Les Bleus' defeat.

France failed to become the first team to retain the World Cup since 1962 as Argentina triumphed in a penalty shoot-out following a remarkable 3-3 draw at Lusail Stadium.

Before Kylian Mbappe's hat-trick enabled France to force extra time and penalties, Deschamps' side made a slow start, becoming the first team to fail to attempt a shot in the first half of a World Cup final.

France had been without Adrien Rabiot and Dayot Upamecano due to illness in their semi-final win over Morocco four days earlier, and several other players reportedly experienced symptoms in the days preceding the final.

Asked about the spread of the virus after Sunday's defeat, Deschamps said it played a role in France's lethargic start.

"The whole squad has been facing a tricky situation for a while now, maybe that had a physical and psychological impact," Deschamps said.

"But I had no concerns about the players who started the match. They were 100 per cent fit, but we only had four days since the last match so perhaps there is some tiredness. 

"That's not an excuse but we didn't show the same energy as previous matches and for the first hour we weren't in the match.

"In those first 70 minutes or so, we were playing a very aggressive and dynamic opponent and we weren't at the same level for a number of reasons.

"We managed to come back from the dead and made a magnificent comeback from a very difficult situation."

Deschamps made his frustration with France's first-half performance clear by becoming the first boss to make two substitutions before half-time in a World Cup match when he withdrew Olivier Giroud and Ousmane Dembele.

Despite Les Bleus' failure to clinch the trophy for a third time, Deschamps praised the players he introduced, Marcus Thuram and Randal Kolo Muani, for reviving the contest.

"I went through a lot of different emotions tonight," Deschamps said. "There are some regrets because we were so close to winning but it wasn't to be.

"There were a number of reasons why, we had a very strong opponent and we were lacking a bit of energy from some key players.

"We had some young inexperienced players who came on and brought some freshness and quality. They got us back in the match to keep the dream alive."

Sergio Aguero pulled on a match shirt to join in with Argentina's World Cup celebrations – earning a teasing put-down from former Premier League rival John Terry.

Former striker Aguero retired in December 2021, shortly after joining Barcelona from Manchester City, when doctors discovered he had a heart issue.

He scored 41 goals for his country before having to hang up his boots, but Aguero was out on the pitch with Lionel Messi and a host of former team-mates, in the thick of the partying players, after Sunday's dramatic final against France.

Aguero was also in the dressing room with the team, drinking champagne as the revelry got into full swing.

It was the sight of him in a shirt but non-matching shorts and socks, and white trainers, that drew the attention of former Chelsea and England captain Terry, who knows a thing or two about turning out in full kit after playing no part in a game.

Famously, Terry donned his Chelsea kit to join in the trophy-lifting celebrations after the 2012 Champions League final, when the Blues beat Bayern Munich on penalties.

The skipper had been absent from that game due to suspension, but his status and contribution through the campaign meant he had a right to be involved when it came to accepting the silverware. Terry duly appeared in full match attire.

He did the same in the following year's Europa League final, after missing out on the game against Benfica due to injury.

Looking at Aguero's post-match outfit on Sunday, Terry wrote on Twitter: "If your [sic] going to do it, at least go for it and put the shin pads and boots on."

Lionel Messi expressed his disbelief after Argentina ended their long wait to clinch a third World Cup crown with a thrilling victory over France.

The Paris Saint-Germain forward scored twice in a dramatic six-goal thriller, with Lionel Scaloni's side emerging as victors following a penalty shoot-out.

It brought an end to a 36-year wait for World Cup glory, with Argentina previously suffering defeats at the final hurdle in 1990 and 2014 – the latter of which saw Messi on the losing side.

After a seven-goal haul and taking home the Golden Ball for the best player of the tournament, Messi finally got his hands on the biggest prize of all and took to social media to share his thoughts.

"I dreamt about it so many times, I wanted it so much that I still can't believe it," he posted on Instagram.

"Thank you so much to my family, to all who support me and also to all who believed in us. We prove once again that Argentinians when we fight together and united we are able to achieve what we aim.

"The merit is of this group, which is above individuals, is the strength of all fighting for the same dream that was also the one of all Argentinians... We did it!!!"

Awarded player of the match in the final, Messi was expected to feature in a post-game press conference but skipped attendance as celebrations continued with the squad.

However, he did speak on the field following Argentina's triumph and made his desire to continue representing his nation clear.

"I enjoy being in the national team, the group, I want to continue living a few more games being world champion," he told TyC Sports.

Lionel Scaloni was left saddened by a sudden realisation late Argentina great Diego Maradona was unable to enjoy their World Cup success in Qatar.

Scaloni's side beat France 4-2 on penalties following a remarkable 3-3 draw after extra time at Lusail Stadium on Sunday.

It was Argentina's first World Cup triumph since Maradona inspired them to glory in 1986, earning Lionel Messi his maiden success in the competition.

Maradona, who played for his national team between 1977 and 1994, died in November 2020 at the age of 60 after suffering a cardiac arrest.

His death was followed by three days of national mourning, putting into context just how significant a figure he was in Argentina.

And for Scaloni on Sunday, being reminded of Maradona's passing was difficult.

Asked what he would say to Maradona if he had been present, Scaloni told reporters: "Well, you make me realise that he's not here, otherwise you'd think he was amongst us.

"Well fortunately we managed to lift this trophy, something we've been dreaming of for so long, we're such a football passionate country.

"I hope he enjoyed it from above. I'm sure if he was here he'd have enjoyed it so much, he'd have been the first one on the pitch.

"Now you ask me this you make me realise he's not here. I wish he was here to enjoy this moment."

Lionel Scaloni says there will be a place for Lionel Messi in Argentina's 2026 World Cup squad if he has a change of heart after he lifted the trophy for the first time in Qatar on Sunday.

Messi scored twice in an incredible final against France, which the Albiceleste won 4-2 on penalties following a thrilling 3-3 draw.

Argentina looked to be cruising to victory after goals from Messi and Angel Di Maria put them two up at the break, but Kylian Mbappe's late quickfire double forced extra time.

Messi put the Copa America champions back ahead in the additional 30 minutes, only for Mbappe to level once more for his hat-trick and take the game all the way to penalties.

Aurelien Tchouameni and Kingsley Coman failed to convert in the shoot-out, which Gonzalo Montiel ended by slotting in the winning spot-kick to make Argentina world champions for a third time.

Messi stated after the match he would carry on playing at international level, but the 35-year-old confirmed before the tournament started that this would be his last World Cup.

Argentina head coach Scaloni says his captain will be selected in four years' time if he changes his mind.

"First of all we need to save him a spot for the next World Cup," Scaloni told reporters. "If he wants to keep playing, he'll be with us.

"He's more than entitled to decide if he wants to keep playing for Argentina or not, or what he wants to do with his career."

Messi was pipped to the Golden Boot due to Mbappe's hat-trick, having started the match level on five goals.

Argentina's star man was, however, awarded with the Golden Ball as the best player in the tournament and Scaloni heaped praise on the mercurial forward.

He said: "It's such a huge pleasure to coach him and his team-mates.

"Everything he transmits to his teams, it's unparalleled, something I've never seen before. He gives so much to his team-mates."

After throwing away a two-goal lead with less than 10 minutes to play, before again letting France back in during extra time, Scaloni was relieved it was finally mission accomplished for Argentina.

"The match was completely insane," Scaloni stated. "For me as coach, I know we had a good match.

"We could’ve won in the first 90 [minutes], however it was not possible. I wasn’t lucky enough, but we were great.

"My feelings? I have the best feelings ever. It wasn’t in my plans, I didn’t envisage to be World Cup winners, [but] we are, and what matters is how we achieved this."

The years leading up to this World Cup triumph have seen Messi take more of a leadership role within the Argentina team, despite having been captain since 2011.

Scaloni revealed Messi had even helped him to calm his nerves, after he took over in 2018 with limited experience.

"After the Brazil match [1-1] in San Juan, a World Cup qualifying match. I called him before he went back to Paris because I thought we were going to face challenging times," Scaloni said.

"The feelings were so strong and disappointment could be massive, because people are very passionate about our national team, and people could get disappointed.

"[Messi] said it doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter, we'll move on. if things go well, perfect, we have to try at least.

"That gave me so much energy, it was an emotional boost. With his answer, I realised we were doing things right."

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