Thursday, 28 October 2021

Messi miss Barcelona privileges at PSG

Messi miss Barcelona privileges at PSG

Argentine was untouchable at Camp Nou but finds that life in France is not quite the same after being hauled off by Mauricio Pochettino on Sunday.

Lionel Messi thought his conversion from Barcelona to PSG would be seamless; he would quickly have appreciated that life in the French capital undertaking to be very different from what he was used to at Camp Nou.

Lionel Messi had grown used to being the boss at Barcelona. More than 20 years at the club, six Ballon d'Or titles, and a record number of goals had made him untouchable, a status that remained unabridged in recent years, even in light of the rejecting of the Catalan side.

At PSG, though, things will not come relatively so easy.

If that was not apparent during his quick cameo in a win over Reims on debut or even as PSG got strangulated by Club Brugge in the UEFA Champions League and imposed to settle for a draw of 1-1, it was made apparent in Sunday's match with Lyon.

Two incidents during the encounter were particularly telling.

Before kick-off, PSG midfielder Ander Herrera got asked in an interview with Marca, who will take the club's penalties this season, with Lionel Messi vying with Kylian Mbappe and Neymar for the responsibility. The Spaniard joked that they might play 'rock, paper, scissors for the honor.

When it comes to the crunch against Lyon, Neymar scooped up the ball and took command of the situation.

That was the first sign that Messi would not hold an untouchable status in his new home.

The second came shortly afterward as head coach Mauricio Pochettino withdrew him to be replaced by Achraf Hakimi.

Pochettino was a particularly penetrating blow to the Argentine, who is sparsely used to being taken off, much less with the match still in the balance. The world saw his withering look to Pochettino, while afterward, he got seen in discussion with compatriot Leandro Paredes on the bench.

It proved a successful move as PSG went on to win the match thanks to a late header from Mauro Icardi after an excellent delivery from Kylian Mbappe, who continues to be the club's great player, having recorded a goal or an assist in every game this season.

Mauricio Pochettino explained in the aftermath.

"These are settlement made for the team and every individual knows we have many marvelous players. We have to take these decisions,"

"We decided to take Messi off because of possibilities of a future injury.

"We have crucial matches coming up and we have to protect him."

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PSG has a packed schedule in the days ahead, with a trip to Metz on Wednesday following a potentially tricky match at home to Montpellier and then a Champions League meeting with Manchester City, which has added crucial following the failure to win in Belgium.

Thierry Henry, Legendary France, and Arsenal striker, who played with Lionel Messi at Barcelona and now chores as a Ligue 1 pundit for Amazon Prime,

Thierry Henry explained the player's feelings, he said.

"His reaction did not surprise me. Maybe he didn't want to come off,"

"We don't know what they're stating to each other. Let's not start the disputation.

"He surely wanted to be on the pitch so he can score."

Mauricio Pochettino's decision appeared to be justified on Monday as Lionel Messi was the recipient of a dead leg presently before being withdrawn against Lyon and led to him defecting to complete Monday's training regime fully.

Nonetheless, it is evident that if it were up to Lionel Messi, he would have remained on the field against Lyon.

While Messi will get treated with healthy respect at PSG, he has not yet held up to the untouchable iconic pendant that was the case at Barcelona, where he was the undisputed alpha. Moving his club for the first time and stepping into the dependency of two big egos in Mbappe and Neymar, he has quickly learned that he is not the boss.

And so, it has not been the dream start at PSG that Lionel Messi might have wished, but this is the reality that faces him. He will also have to adapt if this new chapter of his career proves a success quickly.

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