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PSG uses Messi to hit the table

PSG uses Messi to hit the table

For several years, specifically since the almost departure of Neymar to Barcelona, ​​frustrated by the high claims of PSG, Nasser Al Khelaïfi had systematically repeated that “discipline” had to be above all things. In May 2022, just after completing Mbappé’s renewal, the president announced that it was the end of “Bling-Bling”, a term used in France to refer to luxury and glamor in the most central neighborhoods of the French capital.

That speech had no sporting consequences, as PSG fell in the Champions League round of 16 for the second consecutive year and the fans whistled at their players and the changes promised by the Qatari were in vain. Until this Tuesday, when the club announced a disciplinary file against Messi, suspending him for two weeks of salary and employment and preventing him from exercising and competing with the rest of his teammates..

Before this convulsive episode, the PSG considered that the leaders had become aware of the anger of the fans with the project, specifically with Messi. The whistles from the Virage Auteuil to the Argentine just after the elimination in the Champions League did not go unnoticed by Al Khelaïfi and company, that when it came to negotiating the renewal, dead and impossible at the moment, they knew that a part of their fans demanded an identity from the club, committed players and the end of the galactic projectconsummated in August 2021 precisely with Messi, who had caused so much agony in the Parque de los Príncipes.

A controversial trip to Saudi Arabia

Messi’s renewal had completely stalled. Something happened after the World Cup, because in Qatar, during the tournament, his father, Jorge Messi, reached an agreement with PSG. There was a willingness on both sides to renew. Months later, said gentlemen’s agreement, which needed to be given shape, was delayed and postponed and the Argentine’s feeling of nostalgia, who did not hide his desire to return to Barcelona, ​​was a condition for the negotiations to advance.

PSG consummated this Sunday, against Lorient in the Parc des Princes, its ninth defeat of 2023, five more than in all of last year, causing an earthquake that was going to have strong consequences in the French capital. Although Galtier was initially going to give the squad two days off, it was finally one and the players trained at Camp des Loges, except for one, Leo Messi.

The Rosario had planned for months, according to the footballer’s environment, a trip to Saudi Arabia for commercial reasons. Appointed tourism ambassador for the country from the Arabian peninsula, Messi was caught at the Riyadh airport and that image unnerved PSG, specifically Nasser Al Khelaïfi. The president, who had fought so hard for discipline in the squad, immediately brought together the leaders and decreed to sanction the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner.

The two-month suspension of employment and salary for Messi represents the total breakdown of a relationship that had been convalescing for weeks. He will miss the game against Troyes on Sunday and, unless his situation radically changes, he will not dress short against Ajaccio on May 13. His renewal is a utopia and in Paris they are already preparing the next season without the presence of the former Barcelona player.

Nobody is above the institution or the club

PSG has decided to set an example by sanctioning Leo Messi. Not long ago, one of the most repeated criticisms on the banks of the Seine River was that the players were more in charge than the coaches.. They were given privileges, they couldn’t sit down even if they were touched and the coach, injured, had to eat the conglomerate of stars without enjoying much authority. In fact, last year, just after winning the Ballon d’Or, Messi did not train in the sports city, causing discomfort in the squad, but PSG at that time claimed that the best player in the world suffered from “gastroenteritis”.

The club insists that Messi did not have authorization from the club to make the trip to Saudi Arabia. After a hard defeat against Lorient, by 1-3, the leaders still do not understand why he went thousands of kilometers from Paris to carry out a commercial act in a country that is very far from the French capital. They also argue that such an attitude in any other workplace is intolerable, so the penalty is more than justified.

The current leader of Ligue 1 does not want to lose focus in his desire to become the first team in history to reach 11 French league titles. For this reason, acts such as that of Messi, who traveled to Saudi Arabia without the permission of Al Khelaïfi or Luis Campos while his teammates were exercising in the sports city, deteriorate the image of an entity that has already been completely damaged this year. because of the successive defeats he has suffered.

The message from the president of PSG, who has been the main instigator for the club to sanction him, is clear: nothing and no one is above the institution. The players must respect the club, the city, Paris, and the fans, who have already announced this Wednesday a meeting in front of the Factory, the headquarters of PSG, to emphasize that the identity of the French capital as a whole is untouchable. An awakening that is a reaction to the latest disasters that have occurred in the Parc des Princes.

PSG has given a coup of authority with Messi, in a sanction that could be the beginning of a new era in Paris. The star project, which has caused so many headaches for its fans, has begun to give up, Messi will be the first to leave, but the Parisians also want Neymar to leave Paris in the summer. It will be, in any case, a transcendental summer for his future, since Mbappé’s contract ends next year and his renewal will depend on the sports guarantees that he is granted.

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