Pelé congratulates Messi and Mbappé after World Cup final

Dec 17, 2022, 11:18 PM | Updated: Dec 18, 2022, 1:21 pm
Argentina's Lionel Messi celebrates with the trophy in front of the fans after winning the World Cu...

Argentina's Lionel Messi celebrates with the trophy in front of the fans after winning the World Cup final soccer match between Argentina and France at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022. Argentina won 4-2 in a penalty shootout after the match ended tied 3-3. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

(AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

              France's Kylian Mbappe holds the Golden Boot award for top goalscorer of the tournament after the World Cup final soccer match between Argentina and France at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022. Argentina won 4-2 in a penalty shootout after the match ended tied 3-3. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
            
              A life-size statue of Brazilian soccer legend Pele is displayed during an Conmebol event to pay tribute to Pele in Doha, Qatar, Sunday, Dec. 11, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazil great Pelé congratulated Lionel Messi and Argentina for winning the World Cup and Kylian Mbappé for his goal-scoring exploits in Sunday’s final.

Pelé, who won a record three World Cups as a player, has been in the hospital to treat a respiratory infection.

He posted his message on Instagram after Argentina beat defending champion France 4-2 in a penalty shootout following a 3-3 draw at Lusail Stadium in Qatar.

“Today, football continues to tell its story, as always, in an enthralling way,” Pelé wrote in his post. “Messi winning his first World Cup, as his trajectory deserved. My dear friend, Mbappé, scoring four goals in a final. What a gift it was to watch this spectacle to the future of our sport.”

Messi scored two goals in the match and finally won the lone trophy that had eluded him in his remarkable career. Mbappé, who scored in the 2018 title match when he was a teenager just as Pelé did in 1958, became only the second player in history to score a hat trick in the World Cup final.

Both Messi and Mbappé also scored in the penalty shootout.

Messi ended up winning the Golden Ball award as the best player of the tournament and Mbappé won the Golden Boot award as the top scorer with eight goals in seven matches.

Pelé also took time to mention Morocco for its history-making run as the first African team to reach the semifinals at the tournament.

“And I couldn’t fail to congratulate Morocco for the incredible campaign,” Pelé wrote. “It’s great to see Africa shine.”

Pelé ended his message by again lauding Argentina and mentioning the man most often associated with him as the greatest players the game has ever seen — Diego Maradona.

Maradona, who led Argentina to the 1986 World Cup title, died in 2020.

“Congratulations Argentina!” Pelé wrote. “Certainly Diego is smiling now.”

___

AP World Cup coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/world-cup and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Arizona Coyotes defenseman J.J. Moser (90) and Minnesota Wild center Sam Steel collide in the secon...
Associated Press

Chrychrun scores twice as Coyotes beat Wild 3-2

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Jakob Chychrun had two goals, Jack McBain scored the tie-breaking goal on a breakaway with seven minutes remaining and the Arizona Coyotes beat the Minnesota Wild 3-2 on Monday night. McBain put a back-hander past Marc-Andre Fleury moments after the Coyotes killed off an abbreviated 55-second power play. Karel Vejmelka had […]
21 hours ago
Dallas Mavericks Josh Green (8) goes to the basket as Utah Jazz forward Lauri Markkanen, left, defe...
Associated Press

Green, Hardy help Mavs surprise Jazz 124-111 without Doncic

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Josh Green and Jaden Hardy each scored career highs of 29 points and the short-handed Dallas Mavericks, playing without Luka Doncic, stunned the Utah Jazz 124-111 on Monday night after completing a trade for Kyrie Irving. The Mavericks acquired the eight-time All-Star along with Markieff Morris from the Brooklyn Nets […]
21 hours ago
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, right, and Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hu...
Associated Press

Mahomes, Hurts aware of significance of this Super Bowl duel

PHOENIX (AP) — Philadelphia Eagles coach Nick Sirianni is thrilled young aspiring football players all over the world will get to watch two Black quarterbacks face each other for the first time in the Super Bowl. He’s also pleased they get to watch two really, really good quarterbacks. “I’m really excited for both quarterbacks, what […]
21 hours ago
Dallas Stars goaltender Jake Oettinger (29) defends against a shot while under pressure from Anahei...
Associated Press

Tyler Seguin’s shootout goal gives Stars 3-2 win over Ducks

DALLAS (AP) — Tyler Seguin scored Dallas’ second shootout goal, and the Stars beat the Anaheim Ducks 3-2 on Monday night. Nils Lundkvist and Roope Hintz scored in regulation for Dallas, and Jason Robertson also scored in the shootout. The Stars dropped three straight 3-2 games in overtime before the All-Star break. Dallas goaltender Jake […]
21 hours ago
New York Rangers defenseman Jacob Trouba (8) and Calgary Flames defenseman Chris Tanev (8) fight du...
Associated Press

Lafreniere scores in OT to lift Rangers over Flames 5-4

NEW YORK (AP) — Alexis Lafreniere scored 1:37 into overtime and Jaroslav Halak made 28 saves as the New York Rangers beat the Calgary Flames 5-4 on Monday night. Lafreniere led a 2-on-1 rush and then tracked down a rebound, beating Flames netminder Jacob Markstrom for his seventh goal of the season. That ended a […]
21 hours ago
FILE - Actor Simu Liu, right, watches an NBA basketball game between the Golden State Warriors and ...
Associated Press

Marvel’s Simu Liu dedicates ‘sensory room’ at Warriors arena

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Simu Liu, who’s best known for playing Marvel superhero Shang-Chi, wants everyone who attends an event at Chase Center to feel welcome, comfortable and supported, just as he has been in the five months since opening up about his own challenges with anxiety. Now, there’s the Simu Liu Sensory Room, complete […]
21 hours ago
Pelé congratulates Messi and Mbappé after World Cup final