Mbappe v Messi

Statistics, head-to-head records, milestones and trivia feature as we spotlight the Argentina and France No10s ahead of the Qatar 2022 final.

  • Kylian Mbappe and Lionel Messi are set to collide in the Qatar 2022 final

  • We looks at their records for France and Argentina

  • Read quotes and trivia on the two No10s

    Star sign: Sagittarius
    Boyhood idol: Cristiano Ronaldo
    Players he was compared to as a youngster: Thierry Henry, Ronaldo
    Coaches he’s worked under: Leonardo Jardim, Didier Deschamps, Unai Emery, Thomas Tuchel, Mauricio Pochettino, Christophe Galtier
    Favoured foot: Right
    Height: 1.78m

    Star sign: Cancer
    Boyhood idol: Pablo Aimar
    Player he was compared to as a youngster: Diego Maradona
    Coaches he’s worked under: Frank Rijkaard, Jose Pekerman, Alfio Basile, Pep Guardiola, Diego Maradona, Sergio Batista, Alejandro Sabella, Tito Vilanova, Tata Martino, Luis Enrique, Edgardo Bauza, Ernesto Valverde, Jorge Sampaoli, Lionel Scaloni, Quique Setien. Ronald Koeman, Mauricio Pochettino, Christophe Galtier
    Favoured foot: Left
    Height: 1.70m

    International football
    65 appearances
    33 goals (0.51)
    23 assists (0.35)
    39 wins, 16 draws, 10 losses

    171 appearances
    96 goals (0.56)
    55 assists (0.32)
    105 wins, 39 draws, 27 losses

    World Cup
    Appearances: 13
    Goals: 9 (0.69)
    Assists: 2 (0.15)
    11 wins, 1 draw, 1 loss

    Appearances: 25
    Goals: 11 (0.44)
    Assists: 8 (0.32)
    16 wins, four draws, five losses

    Top World Cup scorers
    Miroslav Klose – 16 in 24
    Ronaldo – 15 in 19
    Gerd Muller – 14 in 13
    Just Fontaine – 13 in 6
    Pele – 12 in 14
    Sandor Kocsis – 11 in 5
    Jurgen Klinsmann – 11 in 17
    Lionel Messi – 11 in 25

    Lionel Messi – 11 goals in 25 games
    Gabriel Batistuta – 10 in 12
    Diego Maradona – 8 in 21
    Guilhermo Stabile – 8 in 4
    Mario Kempes – 6 in 18
    Gonzalo Higuain – 5 in 14

    Just Fontaine – 13 goals in 6 games
    Kylian Mbappe – 9 in 13
    Thierry Henry – 6 in 17
    Zinedine Zidane – 5 in 12
    Michel Platini – 5 in 14
    Olivier Giroud – 5 in 17

    Most international goals in a calendar year
    Messi – 16 in 13 (2022)
    Messi – 12 in 9 (2012)
    Mbappe – 9 in 12 (2022)
    Messi – 9 in 16 (2021)
    Mbappe – 9 in 18 (2018)

    Milestones they could reach on Sunday
    Messi will make his 26th World Cup appearance if he plays against France, taking outright the record he shares with Lothar Matthaus (25).

    Mbappe, who got France’s last goal in the title-clinching victory over Croatia in 2018, could become just the fifth player to score in multiple World Cup finals after Vava, Pele, Paul Breitner and Zinedine Zidane.

    If Argentina win in normal or extra time, Messi will tie Miroslav Klose’s record for most World Cup victories (17).

    Mbappe could become the first player to score two goals from outside the box in World Cup finals.
    Messi could became the first player to win multiple adidas Golden Balls at the World Cup. He was bestowed with the prize at Brazil 2014.

    If Mbappe and Messi are both on target, it would be the first time opponents from the same club score in a World Cup final. The last time two club-mates netted in the fixture was in 1974, when Bayern Munich pair Paul Breitner and Gerd Muller did it for West Germany.

    Did you know?

    • Fayza Lamari, Mbappe’s mother, is a former France national team handball player.

    • Messi, with his annual salary and endorsements totalling $130 million, came top of The Highest-Paid Athletes for 2022 on Forbes’ annual list. He was followed by LeBron James ($121.2m), Cristiano Ronaldo ($115m), Neymar ($95m) and Steph Curry ($92.8m).

    • Mbappe, earning $43 million from salary and endorsements, came fourth on Forbes’ list of The Highest-Paid Athletes Under The Age of 25 for 2022, above the likes of Marshon Lattimore ($40.9m), Devin Booker ($39.9m) and Jake Paul ($38m). Mbappe trailled Max Verstappen ($48m), Naomi Osaka ($59.2m) and Josh Allen ($67m).

    • Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni was Messi’s team-mate at Germany 2006. Argentina lost to the hosts on penalties in the quarter-finals in a shootout headlined by Jens Lehmann’s ‘cheat sheet’.

    • Mbappe was clocked running at a top speed of 38kph while scoring for PSG against Monaco in 2019. Unbelievably, this was faster than the average time Usain Bolt set during his still-standing 100 metres world record run in Berlin in 2009.

      Head to head
      2 Mbappe wins, 1 draw, 0 Messi wins
      6 Mbappe goals; 1 Messi goal

      Round of 16, Russia 2018
      France 4-3 Argentina (Mbappe 2 goals; Messi 0)

      Round of 16, 2020/21 UEFA Champions League
      Barcelona 1-4 Paris Saint-Germain (Messi 0; Mbappe 3)

      Round of 16, 2020/21 UEFA Champions League
      Paris Saint-Germain 1-1 Barcelona (Mbappe 1; Messi 1)

      “They once said you could only stop me with a pistol. Today you need a machine gun to stop Messi.”
      Hristo Stoichkov

      “When I met Messi I reached out and touched him. I needed to make sure he was human like the rest of us.”
      Gigi Buffon

      “Every time I step on to the pitch, I tell myself I’m the best player on it. I’ve been on the same pitch as Messi and Cristiano – they’ve done a billion more things than me – but I still tell myself I’m the best.”
      Kylian Mbappe

      European Golden Shoe
      “I knew I was in the running for the award,” said Mbappe of the European Golden Shoe for 2018/19. “I’m not going to lie: I really wanted to win it. But up against me was Messi. I would score two on a weekend; he would go and score three. I would score three; he would go and score four. It was crazy! I asked Ousmane [Dembele], ‘Is he doing this on purpose?’ He said, ‘Of course. He is keeping an eye on what you do.’ I thought to myself, ‘No bad, eh? Messi is keeping an eye on me.’ It was flattering.”

      Mbappe ultimately finished second in the running, three goals behind Messi, who won the award for the third time running and sixth time overall. Mbappe has yet to win the prize.

      Social media

      • Messi (391 million followers) is the second-most-followed person on Instagram above the likes of Kylie Jenner (375 million), Selena Gomez (364 million) and The Rock (353 million). Cristiano Ronaldo (516) is top.

      • Kylian Mbappe is the most-followed French person and the fourth-most-followed footballer on Instagram behind Neymar (194 million), Messi and Ronaldo. The only younger people with more followers than the 24-year-old France No10 are Senegalese social-media personality Khaby Lame (80.2 million) and American singer-songwriter Billie Eilish (107 million).

      • Messi has seven of the top 20 most-liked Instagram posts of all time. Cristiano Ronaldo has the next most with four.

      • Messi’s post showing a photo of him playing chess with Ronaldo has 31.8 million likes – the fourth most in history.