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From presidents to Pele: How leaders & sporting legends reacted to Argentina’s win

Brazilian football great Pele said that 'legend Diego is smiling now' while Roger Federer praised Messi, saying 'time and time again you have redefined greatness'.

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Following is a roundup of reaction to Argentina winning their third World Cup after beating France 4-2 on penalties, with Lionel Messi scoring twice and Kylian Mbappe grabbing a hat-trick in a 3-3 draw.

Pele, three-Time World Cup Winner

“Today, football continues to tell its story, as always, in an enthralling way. Messi winning his first World Cup, as his trajectory deserved. What a gift it was to watch this spectacle to the future of our sport.

“Congratulations Argentina! Certainly Diego is smiling now.”

Alberto Fernandez, Argentine President

“Always together, always united. WE ARE WORLD CHAMPIONS. There are no more words. THANK YOU @Argentina.”

Emmanuel Macron, French President

“Congratulations to the French team for its journey and its fighting spirit in this World Cup. You have thrilled the nation and the fans all over the world.”

Roger Federer, 20-time Grand Slam Champion

“Fairytale stuff Argentina! Time and time again you (Messi) have redefined greatness. It’s a privilege to watch you.”

Andy Murray, Three-time Grand Slam champion 

“Is Messi the best athlete of all time? Forget just football. What a man.”

Sachin Tendulkar, India batting great 

“Many congratulations to Argentina on doing this for Messi! Wonderful comeback from the way they started the campaign.”

Tiger Woods, 15-time major champion

“He’s (Messi) the greatest soccer player I’ve ever seen, I mean, you say Pele and Maradona but I just still think that what Messi does with the ball is stupid. It’s stuck to his foot.”

Usain Bolt, eight-time Olympic gold medallist

“What a World Cup #ArgentinaVsFrance”

Also read: He smiled, he paused, he hoisted — Messi lifts World Cup after final for the ages


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