Argentina vs France

Argentina vs France – Will there be penalties?: Team records in shootouts and best penalty kicks shooters for FIFA World Cup final

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Argentina and France meet on Sunday for the FIFA 2022 World Cup final with Lionel Messi facing off against Paris Saint-Germain teammate Kylian Mbappe.

The superstar Frenchman already has one title to his name while the legendary Argentina has found the trophy elusive throughout his storied career.

Who will come out on top in this battle between a pair of two-time winners to go third in the all-time list of World Cup winners?

It has been billed as the last game in this tournament for Messi so can he go out with the success that he craves so much, or will his PSG teammate spoil the party and give himself a shot at starting to follow in Messi’s footsteps for Ballon d’Or success? We will find out this weekend.

“I had the privilege and pride of being able to win this trophy with my teammates in 2018,” said France captain Hugo Lloris on Saturday. “But to be honest, I am focused on the present. What happened before is the past.


We want to write our own story. We want to end this in the best possible way. As long as nothing is done, the hardest part remains to be done. We must prepare for a great match, for any eventuality. Be ready to surpass ourselves, to make the effort despite the circumstances with the virus, despite the fatigue. We have to finish the job.”

“From the moment we have the support of our supporters, we know that the country is behind us,” he added. “The rest is of very little importance. We started this competition with a mission, that of going as far as possible.
Very few believed in it. We will give everything to emerge victorious from this final battle. We know what Leo Messi represents in the history of our sport, but I believe that it will be above all a match between the France team and the Argentina team.

With bookmakers almost unable to separate the 2022 FIFA World Cup finalists, the potential for the Qatar decider to become the third edition of the final to end in a penalty shootout seems a distinct possibility between Argentina and France.

The reigning champions could exorcise a painful memory after one miss cost them the 2006 final against Italy, while Argentina would have reason to be confident because of their status as the team with the most wins (six) in shootouts at the tournament.

Lionel Messi, Leandro Paredes, Gonzalo Montiel and Lautaro Martinez all scored but Enzo Fernandez missed as Lionel Scaloni’s side beat the Netherlands on spot-kicks in the quarterfinals in Qatar.

Here, we take a look at the nations’ records and their best takers ahead of a game that could push the 2022 finals beyond the record of four penalty shootouts across a World Cup tournament.

Argentina, France penalty shootout history

Taking the World Cup, UEFA EURO and Copa America into account, Argentina have won nine of their 15 shootouts, while France have lost four of their seven. Argentina have lost five out of nine during the 21st century, with France failing in two out of two.

Argentina penalty shootout record

  • 1990 World Cup quarterfinals: won 3-2 vs Yugoslavia
  • 1990 World Cup semifinals: won 4-3 vs Italy
  • 1993 Copa America quarterfinals: won 6-5 vs Brazil
  • 1993 Copa America quarterfinals: won 6-5 vs Colombia
  • 1995 Copa America quarterfinals: lost 2-4 vs Brazil
  • 1998 World Cup Round of 16: won 4-3 vs England
  • 2004 Copa America final: lost 2-4 vs Brazil
  • 2006 World Cup quarterfinals: lost 2-4 vs Germany
  • 2011 Copa America quarterfinals: lost 4-5 vs Uruguay
  • 2014 World Cup semifinals: won 4-2 vs Netherlands
  • 2015 Copa America quarterfinals: won 5-4 vs Colombia
  • 2015 Copa America final: lost 1-4 vs Chile
  • 2016 Copa America final: lost 2-4 vs Chile
  • 2021 Copa America semifinals: won 3-2 vs Colombia
  • 2022 World Cup quarterfinals: won 4-3 vs Netherlands

Lionel Messi scores vs Netherlands

Getty Images

France penalty shootout record

  • 1982 World Cup semifinals: lost 4-5 vs Germany
  • 1986 World Cup quarterfinals: won 4-3 vs Brazil
  • EURO 1996 quarterfinals: won 5-4 vs Netherlands
  • EURO 1996 semifinals: lost 5-6 vs Czech Republic
  • 1998 World Cup quarterfinals: won 4-3 vs Italy
  • 2006 World Cup final: lost 3-5 vs Italy
  • EURO 2020 Round of 16: lost 4-5 vs Switzerland

Best penalty takers for Argentina, France

Argentina captain Messi’s side have the more experienced penalty takers among their ranks, with the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner likely to step up first for them in the event of a shootout and Rodrigo De Paul the most likely addition to the players who took one against the Netherlands.

France’s forward line of Kylian Mbappe, Olivier Giroud, Antoine Griezmann and Ousmane Dembele are most likely to step up. Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema, who has missed the tournament through injury but could return to the squad in time for the final, has scored 31 of his 39 senior penalties, succeeding on the one occasion when he took one in a shootout.

Figures as of December 16 2022.

NameCountryCareer penalty sucess rate (total penalties)Rate in shootouts only (total)
Enzo FernandezArgentina83.3% (6)50% (2)
Julian AlvarezArgentina75% (4)50% (2)
Rodrigo De PaulArgentina76.92% (13)0% (1)
Lautaro MartinezArgentina64.71% (17)66% (3)
Alexis Mac AllisterArgentina85.71% (7)66% (3)
Gonzalo MontielArgentina100% (5)100% (2)
Leandro ParedesArgentina100% (4)66% (6)
Olivier GiroudFrance92% (25)83.3% (6)
Marcus ThuramFrance62.5% (8)100% (2)
Antoine GriezmannFrance63.3% (30)75% (4)
Ousmane DembeleFrance66% (3)100% (4)
Jordan VeretoutFrance87% (31)
Theo HernandezFrance75% (4)100% (2)
Ibrahima KonateFrance100% (1)

Is Messi better than Mbappe at penalties?

The pair have a similar record but their contrasting levels of experience mean there is less evidence of Mbappe’s penalty prowess.

Messi’s personal success rate has been improved by his success in three out of three penalties en route to the final, as well as that shootout conversion in the quarterfinals. The 35-year-old did, however, see his spot kick saved in the Round of 16 against Poland, adding to his miss during a draw with Iceland at the 2018 tournbament.

At 23, Mbappe has already tasted the kind of despair Messi felt when he claimed he would retire from international football after spurning a penalty in 2016 in the second of two successive Copa America final defeats to Chile.

Mbappe apologised after missing a penalty to cost France a shootout against Switzerland in the first knockout round at EURO 2020.

Figures as of December 16 2022.

NameCountryCareer penalty sucess rate (total penalties)Rate in shootouts only (total)
Lionel MessiArgentina77.14% (108 out of 140)87.5% (7 out of 8)
Kylian MbappeFrance81.4% (22 out of 27)66% (2 out of 3)

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