In Pictures: Argentina Celebrates as Messi Brings Home World Cup

Buenos Aires
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Celebrations in Buenos Aires
Image: Thousands take to the streets in Buenos Aires to celebrate Argentina’s win

Millions of Argentinians breathed a collective sigh of relief after their side’s dramatic World Cup win – before letting loose on the streets of Buenos Aires in celebration.

Maradona was the hero in 1986 when the South Americans last brought the coveted trophy home.

Celebrations in Buenos Aires

And 36 years on it was Lionel Messi’s turn.

Playing in what was probably his final World Cup, the talisman scored twice – once in normal time, and a second in extra time – as well as netting in the nail-biting penalty shootout.

Millions of Argentines cried, yelled and hugged as they followed the game – most chanting the name of their captain.

Jubilant scenes in Buenos Aires after Argentina win World Cup
Soccer Football - FIFA World Cup Final Qatar 2022 - Fans in Buenos Aires - Buenos Aires, Argentina - December 18, 2022 Argentina fans at the Obelisco celebrate winning the World Cup REUTERS/Martin Villar
Argentine soccer fans celebrate their team's World Cup victory over France, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022. (AP Photo/Matilde Campodonico)
Image: (AP Photo/Matilde Campodonico)

And the man, who many consider to be the world’s greatest player, did not disappoint.

The celebrations went on through the night in the capital and in cities and towns around the country.

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Argentine soccer fans light a flare celebrating their team's World Cup victory over France in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Image: (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Argentina celebrates
Argentina celebrates

Argentina beat defending champions France 4-2 on penalties after drawing 3-3 after extra time in front of an 88,000-strong crowd in Qatar.

Messi celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates
Image: Messi opened the scoring for Argentina before Angel Di Maria doubled the lead
Angel Di Maria celebrates scoring Argentina's second goal
Image: Angel Di Maria celebrates scoring Argentina’s second goal

However, a late brace from France hero Kylian Mbappe saw the game go into extra-time.

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