Argentina just beat France in what might've been the best World Cup final ever -- a nail-biter that came down to the wire ... and in the end, a good old-fashioned shootout.
The game had everyone at the edge of their seat through the full 90 minutes of regulation -- not to mention the extra 30 minutes that was played after things were left tied at 2-2. Lionel Messi scored Argentina's third goal in extra time, and then Kylian Mbappe responded by tying it up yet again ... sending the match into penalty kicks, where ARG eked it out.
After three straight goals from Argentina -- and two misses from France -- Gonzalo Montiel had a chance to clinch it, which he promptly did by putting the ball in the back of the net. France's goalie, Hugo Lloris, didn't stand a chance ... diving in the other way.
The two stars of each respective team, Messi and Mbappe, scored their penalties ... and the rest of the Argentina squad did their job too. But, two French players screwed the pooch.
It's truly a shame, because Mbappe was literally the only guy on his team to keep them in the fight ... scoring all 3 of France's goals, earning a hat trick and giving his squad the morale to play on. In the end, all that work was squandered away in a virtual crapshoot.
Still, it was an explosive game up until the very end -- with tons of back-and-forth up and down the pitch ... and a lot of great soccer put on display for the entire world.
Sports fans couldn't have asked for anything better, really. This was one for the books, no doubt.
This also serves as a beautiful bow-out for Messi -- who's said to be retiring after this. He's sure to be awarded Player of the Tournament and every other honor available for individual achievement. The guy's a legend, and he went out on top in the World Cup.