WORLD CUP CONFIDENTIAL: Lionel Messi needs to emulate Gareth Bale to win the World Cup with Argentina

If Lionel Messi is to win the World Cup last-ditch, he needs to emulate Gareth Bale and excel in the big moments! Sportsmail writers discuss the Argentinian star’s prospects in Qatar in today’s WORLD CUP CONFIDENTIAL

  • Lionel Messi may have one last chance to win the World Cup with Argentina
  • The 35-year-old meets Saudi Arabia in Argentina’s first game on Tuesday
  • Sportsmail’s Martin Samuel believes the forward must try to emulate Gareth Bale
  • The Wales captain scored the crucial equalizer in Monday’s 1-1 draw against the USA
  • To lead Argentina to glory, Messi must compete like Bale in the greatest moments
  • Click here for the latest 2022 World Cup news, matches, live action and results

Lionel Messi will lead Argentina to the World Cup title if he emulates Gareth Bale’s winning skills demonstrated in Wales’ crucial 1-1 draw with USA on Monday.

The Welsh captain won and converted a late penalty to equalize after Timothy Weah’s opener in the first half, keeping Wales’ hopes of qualifying for the knockout rounds in Group B very much alive.

Sportsmail Martin Samuel believes Messi must become for Argentina what Bale is for Wales and channels the Welshman’s talent to perform in the biggest moments.

Lionel Messi is bidding to win the World Cup in what is likely to be his last attempt in Qatar

Lionel Messi is bidding to win the World Cup in what is likely to be his last attempt in Qatar

Gareth Bale (L) scored the crucial equalizer from the penalty spot in Wales' 1-1 draw with USA on Monday

Gareth Bale (L) scored the crucial equalizer from the penalty spot in Wales’ 1-1 draw with USA on Monday

Daily Mail columnist Samuel spoke as part of sports mail and MailPlus‘ daily videocast ‘World Cup Confidential’. It appears on MailOnline every morning of the tournament and can be found on our YouTube channel.

Asked if he thought Messi could win his first World Cup in Qatar, Samuel replied: “You never know. But the guy he should emulate is Gareth Bale. Because Gareth Bale found a way to interfere in a match out of nowhere yesterday.

“And as his career progressed, towards the end of his career, Gareth Bale found a way to fit into the narrative.

“They got MLS last season, didn’t play 90 minutes for his club at all that season, they go into overtime, score the equaliser, they win the MLS Cup.

“That’s what you want from a player like Lionel Messi. He can’t be the man he was 10 years ago, he really can’t, but what he can be is this guy. The guy who can define the game when you really, really need it.

The 35-year-old forward meets Saudi Arabia in the World Cup opener in Argentina on Tuesday

The 35-year-old forward meets Saudi Arabia in the World Cup opener in Argentina on Tuesday

“And Cristiano Ronaldo as well. I’m not sure if he’s possibly as strong as Lionel Messi right now, but that’s a quality that great players have when they decide they’re not going to lose a game.

“That’s what Gareth Bale has – I’m not going to lose this game, we’re not going to lose this.

“He found a way to take a point for Wales last night. It won’t work for him every night, but it worked last night and it works for him quite often. And that’s what you want from Messi for Argentina.’

Messi’s World Cup bid begins on Tuesday with the opening match between Argentina and Saudi Arabia.

The Argentine superstar won his first major international title of 2021 after his country beat Brazil 1-0 in the Copa America final last September.

Messi won his first major international title in 2021, winning the Copa America with Argentina

Messi won his first major international title in 2021, winning the Copa America with Argentina

Although Messi is widely regarded as the greatest footballer of all time, he has yet to add the World Cup to his illustrious portfolio of trophies.

Sportsmail’s Ian Herbert believes that all indicators point to Messi set to win the World Cup in December.

He said on World Cup Confidential: “It feels like Messi is written in the stars, so many of the locals here are Argentina fans, there are a lot of jerseys with the number 10.

“I think there is, too. If he plays in the final it will be his 1,000th game. I just feel like there needs to be some narrative written here, how cute would that be?

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