Messi heaps praise on “spectacular” Alvarez
By: AFAYO SHADRACH BETHEL
Argentina captain Lionel Messi has called Julian Alvarez “spectacular” and “extraordinary” after the 22-year-old’s double against Croatia helped them into the World Cup final.
Manchester City’s Alvarez took his goal tally to four, one behind joint top scorers Messi and Kylian Mbappe.
Argentina, who last won the World Cup in 1986, face France on Sunday.
The young striker was not expected to feature prominently for Argentina this tournament and only made substitute appearances in their shock opening defeat by Saudi Arabia and the win over Mexico, with coach Lionel Scaloni initially preferring Inter Milan’s Lautaro Martinez.
Alvarez has started the four matches since, though, culminating in his impressive display in the 3-0 semi-final victory, in which he was brought down for Messi’s penalty opener, before scoring the next two goals himself.