Roy Keane names favorites between Argentina and France to win 2022 FIFA World Cup final

Argentina are set to face France for the fourth time at a FIFA World Cup.
Argentina are set to face France for the fourth time at a FIFA World Cup.

Manchester United legend Roy Keane has named Argentina as the favorite to lift the 2022 FIFA World Cup trophy after they square off in the summit clash in Lusail, Qatar on Sunday (18 December).

Argentina, who are ranked third in the world, are set to appear in their sixth FIFA World Cup final after registering a confident 3-0 win against Croatia in the last-four stage. Earlier in the knockout stages, the Lionel Messi-led side triumphed over the Netherlands and Australia in the quarterfinal and Round of 16 stages, respectively.

France, meanwhile, are bidding to become the first team in 60 years to retain the prestigious trophy in their fourth tournament summit clash. Les Bleus advanced to the final after defeating Poland in the Round of 16, England in the last-eight stage, and Morocco in the semifinal.

Speaking to ITV, Keane shared his thoughts on the much-awaited summit clash of the ongoing 2022 FIFA World Cup. He said:

"It's intriguing, it's a great final and one to really look forward to. You look at France against Morocco and England and you think they're not great, but they get the job done. They've conceded one goal in those two games and that was a penalty."

Backing La Albiceleste to end their 36-year-long drought, he added:

"But Argentina, with all the support behind them, the energy of the team and of course Lionel Messi, you would have to say they are slight favourites. We saw glimpses of peak Messi. He's done it for years. The guy is fantastic and I love watching him. You know what, I hope they win it, even if it's just for him."

Sharing his thoughts on Didier Deschamps' side, Keane concluded:

"I think Argentina will be encouraged by how many chances Morocco got and how easy it was to get through their opposition's midfield. But, Sunday is a different game. The intensity will be different. France are the world champions so they will be confident and their attacking players can certainly shine."

What happened the last time Argentina faced France at the FIFA World Cup?

The 2022 FIFA World Cup final is set to be a replay of the previous edition's last-16 clash, where France fashioned a 4-3 win over Argentina.

Antoine Griezmann opened the scoring from the penalty spot before Angel Di Maria equalized in the final stages of the first half. Gabriel Mercado and Benjamin Pavard traded blows ahead of Kylian Mbappe's sensational four-minute brace after the hour-mark. Later, Sergio Aguero scored a consolation goal deep in injury time.

Argentina had more possession of the ball (61%), gave more passes than France (512-344), had almost the same number of attempts on goal (10-9), and had the same number of shots on target (4).

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Edited by Aatiya Alim Qazi