It may have been more than a month since Argentina won the FIFA World Cup, but we aren't done talking about it yet. Lionel Messi has recently given his first interview since Qatar 2022, reflecting on everything that happened in that successful campaign.
La Albiceleste won a tournament for the ages, bouncing back from a loss in their debut to claim dramatic victories that included a heated quarterfinal against the Netherlands and a memorable shootout win over France in the final.
Angel Di Maria, who had already scored for his nation in Finalissima, Copa America, and Olympic finals, once again got on the scoresheet in the tournament decider. With the World Cup in the rear-view mirror, Di Maria revealed how Lionel Scaloni motivated him before the final.
Angel Di Maria suggests Lionel Scaloni took subtle dig at Jules Kounde
In an interview with TyC Sports, Di Maria addressed his conversation with Scaloni before the World Cup final. The Juventus winger had missed many games due to injury, but the coach seemed to be confident Di Maria would outplay French right-back Jules Kounde.
"Scaloni told me before the final that I was going to have fun on the left," Di Maria said, via Roy Nemer of Mundo Albiceleste. While that's a perfect way to motivate his player, it also implied that Kounde wouldn't be a major obstacle.
Either way, Scaloni's prediction turned out to be true. Di Maria had a great first half, and neither Kounde nor right winger Ousmane Dembele could stop him. In fact, Argentina were awarded a penalty after Dembele tripped Di Maria in the box.