France star | Sporting News United Kingdom"/>
In a another reality, Kylian Mbappé is currently being seen as France's savior. The first player to score a hat-trick in a men's World Cup final since Sir Geoff Hurst for England in 1966.
Before turning 24 years old, he has won the Golden Boot and won two World Cups. Instead, Mbappé was watching Argentina's long-awaited inauguration of Messi as their unquestioned idol while seated in the French bench with his shirt pulled over his face.
Despite not having the trophy he or France had come for, Mbappé nonetheless made it to the winner's circle and was the unsmiling extra in a supporting scene celebrating Argentina's World Cup success.
Perhaps unjustly, this championship match had been framed as a contest between Messi and Mbappé, two players from Paris St. Germain.
He is now the sport's all-time leading scorer after tallying four goals in two World Cup finals. He and Pelé are tied for sixth place on the all-time scoring list for men's World Cup finals contests with 12 goals combined.
Additionally, he was the tournament's youngest player to reach double digits. Despite the challenges of bridging periods, the parallel to Pelé is appropriate.
In their adolescence, both men achieved their first victory: Pelé in 1958 and Mbappé in Russia 60 years later.
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