Argentinians are celebrating Christmas with extra passion this year following their FIFA World Cup triumph on December 18 after a thrilling match against France. The Seleccion, Argentine football’s governing body, has released a video thanking Lionel Messi for their triumph.

In the video, a small boy can be seen climbing down his stairs late at night on Christmas Eve to find out what gift Santa Claus has left for him. When he finally opens the box left by Father Christmas, he finds the FIFA World Cup trophy inside. The boy picks up the coveted trophy in his hands and mutters in gratitude, “Gracias Papá Lionel!”

Check out the video right here:

Messi and his teammates were given a hero’s welcome when they returned to Buenos Aires with the World Cup trophy. The Argentines had to wait 36 years to become world champions again after Diego Maradona led them to victory in the 1986 edition of the tournament.

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The Argentine central bank is also reportedly considering printing Messi’s face on some of their currency notes. The Argentine players were greeted by millions of people on the streets of Buenos Aires when they first stepped into the city. 

Messi has long been in the shadow of his predecessor, Diego Maradona, for his inability to win a trophy with La Albiceleste despite his overwhelming achievements in his club career at Barcelona. 

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However, now that Messi has even surpassed Maradona (the late footballing icon, unlike Messi, did not win a Copa America with his national squad) with his achievements for his country, the nation has embraced him as a hero.

The 35-year-old announced after the World Cup final match that he would continue playing for the Argentina team, but might not be able to take part in the 2026 World Cup that will be hosted by the United States, Mexico, and Canada.