Lionel Messi wore a lucky red ribbon during the World Cup final as he finally got his hands on the prize which had evaded him for so long.
In Russia at the 2018 World Cup, Messi was handed an amulet by Argentine journalist Rama Pantarotto in the mixed zone after the Barcelona legend missed a penalty against Iceland. It belonged to the reporter’s mother.
“My mum loves you more than she loves me, I carry her red ribbon for good luck,” he told Messi.. If you want it, I can give it to you.”
Panaretto assumed that although Messi had accepted, he would have just thrown it away. Much to his delight, Messi showed him that he was wearing it around his left ankle after scoring against Nigeria in the final group stage game.
“Mum… Messi wore it,” Pantarotto said to the camera, pointing to the heavens in an emotional moment.
Messi liked the idea of the lucky charm and he passed on a red amulet to Philippe Coutinho during his struggles at Barcelona in 2019.
The Brazilian was still seen wearing it when he signed for Aston Villa in January of this year. But a slew of Argentina players have also been sporting red amulets.
We doubt that the very same one has been passed around but Paulo Dybala did confirm that Messi gave him one before he scored his first competitive goal for Argentina.
Lately, the red ribbon has been with Lautaro Martinez, who has been struggling to find the back of the net…
…And Rodrigo De Paul, who had been struggling to stay in form because he was injured early on in the tournament. pic.twitter.com/MbHhmvLRyd
— Barça Worldwide (@BarcaWorldwide) December 18, 2022
Lautaro Martinez, Rodrigo de Paul and Angel di Maria have all been wearing an identical red bracelet on their wrists in recent times, while Emiliano Martinez had it on for the final penalty shoot-out where he saved Kingsley Coman’s spot-kick and when he collected the Golden Glove award.
But crucially, Messi has continued to wear it both in his free time and in the biggest games. It was on his ankle in the dressing room after being crowned a world champion and is a symbol of his success.
Messi struck a double in the breathtaking 3-3 draw, with his PSG colleague Kylian Mbappe scoring a World Cup final hat-trick but still ending up on the losing team.
On penalties, Argentina prevailed 4-2 after two France misses misnd it was Gonzalo Montiel who put away the decisive spot-kick to clinch a third World Cup for the South American side.