• World Cup 2022

France president pays tribute to the ‘extraordinary’ Kylian Mbappe

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The Paris Saint-Germain striker made history at the World Cup final to help France come back from behind twice against Argentina.

Kylian Mbappe delivered an ‘extraordinary’ performance that has made all of France ‘proud’, according to French president Emmanuel Macron.

The 23-year-old scored two second-half goals within 97 seconds to draw France level with Argentina in Sunday’s World Cup final at 2-2, forcing the showpiece event to go into extra time.

Mbappe then scored a penalty in added time after Lionel Messi put Argentina in front to level the scoreline at 3-3. In doing so, the striker became the first player to score a World Cup final hat-trick since England’s Geoff Hurst in 1966. He later converted France’s opening spot-kick in the penalty shoot-out that followed.

However, as Kingsley Coman and Aurelien Tchouameni missed their respective penalties, France lost the shootout 4-2, ending Mbappe’s dream of a second straight World Cup title.

“We were very far behind at the end of the first period. It’s already happened, there have been comebacks like that, but it’s very rare in the history of football,” Macron told RMC Sport.

“We came back tremendously. It’s extraordinary what Mbappe did, but the whole team was hungry again. I believed in it immensely. 

“Afterwards, we performed a second miracle by coming back from nowhere. We had match point.

“Mbappe is a very great player, but he is young, I told him he was only 23. He was the top scorer at this World Cup. He won a World Cup [in 2018], [and] he made a final. I was as sad as him. I said he made us very proud and in the end, we lost a football match, we went to nothing. That’s sport.”

Mbappe, who won the 2018 World Cup with France, finished his second campaign in the tournament with the Golden Boot award, managing eight goals and two assists in seven matches.

The PSG superstar is now level with Brazilian legend Pele on 12 World Cup goals.