IT was disappointment for France in the World Cup final as they were beaten by Argentina 4-2 on penalties, despite a courageous comeback.
Lionel Messi and Co were rampant in the opening 45 minutes as the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner and Angel Di Maria scored as the Argentine’s raced into a two goal lead.
GettyKylian Mbappe scored a hat-trick in the final[/caption]
GettyKinglsey Coman missed a decisive spot-kick[/caption]
But when all French hope was seemingly lost Kylian Mbappe netted a brace to give Les Bleus a chance and force an additional half an hour of play.
In the 109th minute Messi scored a scrappy goal, but then just nine minutes later Mbappe got his hat-trick to send it to penalties.
Kingsley Coman and Aurelien Tchouameni missed the all-important kicks as Argentina won.
Here is how SunSport rated the France star’s performances in the dramatic game.
Hugo Lloris – 6
Tottenham skipper was furious at the early knock from Romero. No chance with the Messi penalty or Di Maria’s second. Flying leap to foil Messi late-on. Could not stop a pen in the shootout.
Jules Kounde – 4
Was targeted down his flank but it was his decision to leave Di Maria to Dembele and stay deep that proved costly before failing to stop second.
Raphael Varane – 5
The United defender let Upamecano take care of Alvarez to play free. Helpless when France rocked under the Argentine passion play.
Dayot Upamecano – 6
Restored to side after missing semi-final and no real mistakes yet never quite looked composed. Big moments in extra-time.
Theo Hernandez – 6
All too aware of Messi but will feel let down by Mbappe’s unwillingness to do any of the donkeywork in support of him.
Adrien Rabiot – 4
Declared fit again after a bug but clearly he was not. Has been superb until the final but nowhere near as influential as he had been until the last eight. Booked.
Aurelien Tchouameni – 6
Calmness about his game is remarkable even when those around him seemed for a long time to have gone absent without leave. Missed a crucial penalty.
Antoine Griezmann – 5
Arguably the player of the tournament until the final yet was unable to make any real impact as France fell off their bike.
Ousmane Dembele – 3
Scrambled brain saw him trip Di Maria to hand Argentina the spot-kick lead and never recovered mentally before his early replacement.
Olivier Giroud – 4
Starved of any service in open play and committed foul before getting underneath his one set-piece chance. Clearly furious at being hooked before the break and then booked an HOUR later.
Kylian Mbappe – 9
Zero to hero. Incredible. Was he playing in the first half? Looked like he’d picked the biggest game of his career to have the worst day of his life. Then….remarkable. The first World Cup final hat-trick since Hurst in 1966.
Randal Kolo Muani (for Dembele 41) – 6
Scored with his first touch in the semi and while he could not repeat that he gave France the thrust and dynamism they had been lacking to win that spot-kick.
Marcus Thuram (for Giroud 41) – 7
Handed the graveyard shift that had broken Mbappe’s spirit and tried to breathe life into France on the left. Booked.
Kingsley Coman (for Griezmann 71) – 7
Arrival signalled a final throw of the French dice. And it came up with a pair of sixes. Missed penalty.
Eduardo Camavinga (for Hernandez 71) – 6
Looked too late for Real Madrid youngster to change a script that had seemingly long been written, especially at left-back. Conventional wisdom was wrong.
Youssouf Fofana (for Rabiot 96) – 6
Concussion sub made sure he kept his head amid the maelstrom of extra-time passion.
Ibrahima Kounate (for Varane 112) – 5
Desperate times require desperate acts. But there was little the Liverpool defender could do.
Axel Disasi (for Kounde 120) – 5
No time to make any impact.
Referee: Szymon Marciniak – 8
Polish whistler was perfectly on the spot to make the big penalty call. Kept his head when some players were losing theirs. Brilliant spot of the Thuram dive.