Iceland’s goalkeeper said after stopping five-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi’s second-half penalty attempt Saturday that he had studied many of the Argentine superstar’s shots from the 12-yard mark.
Hannes Halldorsson’s save prevented a second Argentine goal and was the key play in that Group D match, which ended in a 1-1 draw.
The 34-year-old is also a film director by trade.
He said he had tried to get inside Messi’s head and correctly guessed that the FC Barcelona forward would aim his shot just inside the left upright, making the save by diving to his right.
The Icelander said it was a dream come true to face the “best player in the world,” adding that his side had earned an important point in its first-ever World Cup match.
Messi’s form against Iceland came under a lot of scrutiny from fans and pundits alike, who questioned Argentina’s credentials despite having a top rate frontline, with the likes of Aguero, Dybala, Higuain and Di Maria alongside Leo Messi.
Argentina previously suffered 3 back-to-back defeats in cup finals, i.e; 2014 World Cup Finals against Germany, Copa America vs Chile and Copa America Centenario vs Chile in 2016, another occasion where Messi had missed a penalty.
Following these defeats, the 5 time- Ballon’Dor Winner, Lionel Messi had taken a temporary retirement from international football, but soon reinstated himself back to the Argentine varsity.
The question that arises now is that, given Messi’s poor penalty-taking record, Should he continue to take them?