Lionel Messi v Luka Modric: An epic encounter

Two football greats face each other for one final attempt at World Cup glory

Argentina against Croatia in the first semifinal of this World Cup
Lionel Messi and Luka Modric face each other to make their dreams come true
FIFA+ analyzes and compares their careers
“Winner takes it all” according to ABBA, a band that has been reviving its success in recent months. The Swedish spell definitely applies to football, and this week two legends of the sport, Lionel Messi and Luka Modric, will be back in the spotlight at the Lusail Stadium to claim the only trophy missing in their glittering careers.

This will undoubtedly be the last chance to keep their World Cup dreams alive. As the final whistle blew, for one of them, the dream of reaching the top of any footballer’s career would come to an end.

Messi against Modric, historic match
Let’s see what these two champions have achieved in their careers. Second Number

Messi and Modric have faced each other several times in their careers thanks to the La Liga match between Barcelona and Real Madrid and, more recently, in the Champions League game between Madrid and PSG. There was also precedent in the World Cup (3-0 to Croatia in the FIFA World Cup Russia 2018™) and the 2006 special encounter, a friendly match in which Messi scored his first goal for La Albiceleste while Modric won his first goal. hats for Croatia.

Fate two Number 10
Quality, quantity and charisma, leaders on and off the field, Messi and Modric both have a past that is far from simple. As a young boy, Messi had to struggle to get to Europe and compete with other boys his age because of his small stature, but he has a technique that is already unique and rare. Modric, on the other hand, grew up during the Balkan wars that led to Croatian independence in 1991. Two different but similar stories that intersect in one of the most important matches of their careers.

As fate would have it, there’s one more unusual statistic that unites them: the two have played and lost World Cup finals and then been awarded the Golden Ball as the tournament’s best player. It happened to Messi at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™, when Argentina lost to Germany in the final, and to Modric at Russia 2018, when Croatia fell 4-2 to France at the last hurdle.

Compare their careers
Both Messi and Modric have won almost everything.

Messi’s achievements are astounding: Ten Spanish league titles secured with Barcelona, as well as seven domestic cups and eight super cups; one Ligue 1 title and one French Super Cup; four UEFA Champions League titles, three UEFA Super Cups and three FIFA Club World Cups. With Argentina, he has won one FIFA U-20 World Cup, one Olympic gold, one Copa America CONMEBOL and one Finalissima. In terms of individual accolades, Messi has bagged seven Ballon d’Or and was awarded the Ballon d’Or at the 2014 World Cup. It’s been a career that says it all, with only one trophy missing.

Modric’s career has also been glittering with trophies: the midfielder won three Croatian league titles, one super cup and two league cups with Dinamo Zagreb. In a Real Madrid shirt, he has won everything: three La Liga titles, four Super Cups, one League Cup, five UEFA Champions League titles, four UEFA Super Cups and four FIFA Club World Cups. With the Croatian national team, he came close to winning the last World Cup, losing to France in the final. However, as a small consolation, Modric was awarded the Golden Ball as the best player in the tournament. He is also a Ballon d’Or winner.

Eternal champion
“Lionel Messi is the best and he has dominated this sport in the same way that Michael Jordan did in basketball”, said Pep Guardiola, who was enamored with the Argentinian number 10 before.

“Modric is immortal. He is always ready, always ready and always plays well. He is a player who changes games”, said Carlo Ancelotti about the Real Madrid and Croatia midfielder this summer.

Tuesday’s semifinals will allow us to enjoy their talent once again.

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