Lionel Messi made his debut for Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday in a 2-0 street win over Stade de Reims. He performed the ultimate 24 minutes of the match, approaching for Neymar.
It was an unremarkable stint off the bench for Messi, who saved it easy in his introduction to the French league. He didn’t try a dribble or shot try and was content material to assist the group see out a 2-0 outcome with easy passing — he linked on 95 p.c of his passes.
The Ligue 1 match was his first look within the matchday squad after sitting out PSG’s final two Ligue 1 matches. Messi’s debut got here 19 days after he signed with the membership on Aug. 10. He required time to get himself into form after final enjoying a aggressive match with Argentina on July 10 within the Copa America.
Messi will subsequent rejoin Argentina for 3 South American World Cup qualifiers in September. He’ll rejoin PSG for a Ligue 1 match on Sept. 12 in opposition to Clermont Foot, adopted by the membership’s opening UEFA Champions League match on the street to Membership Brugge.
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PSG squad vs. Stade de Reims
It was the primary time that supervisor Mauricio Pochettino had a close to full-strength squad at his disposal. Defender Sergio Ramos is nonetheless out with a calf harm and will not be again till September.
Making room within the matchday squad for Messi, Neymar and Messi’s compatriot, midfielder Leandro Paredes , PSG dropped three gamers from the roster that confronted Brest the earlier week: defender El Chadaille Bitshiabu , midfielder Rafinha and Ismael Gharbi
Right here’s the total 22-man squad that Pochettino assembled for the match in opposition to Stade de Reims:
- Goalkeepers (3): Gigi Donnarumma, Keylor Navas, Denis Franchi
- Defenders (5): Achraf Hakimi, Presnel Kimpembe, Marquinhos, Abdou Diallo, Thilo Kehrer
- Midfielders (9): Nathan Bitumazala, Leandro Paredes, Danilo Pereira, Idrissa Gueye, Marco Verratti, Georginio Wijnaldum, Ander Herrera, Julian Draxler, Junior Dina Ebimbe
- Forwards (5): Lionel Messi, Angel Di Maria, Neymar Jr., Kylian Mbappe, Arnaud Kalimuendo
Messi introduced to PSG followers
Though he wasn’t within the squad to play in his first Ligue 1 match as a PSG participant in opposition to Strasboug on Aug. 14, Messi was introduced to the house followers alongside the summer time’s different new arrivals.
“It was a really particular week for me,” he mentioned when handed the mic. “I need to thank all of the followers for the welcome once I arrived in Paris. It was unimaginable. I really feel completely happy and I am excited. I am so completely happy to be right here and completely happy for this new section in my profession that I will be experiencing. And I hope collectively we are able to get pleasure from this season and that it is a fantastic yr for us. That is what I am feeling. I am actually excited by all this.”
Messi’s first matchday expertise as a PSG participant was spent alongside Neymar as they sat collectively within the PSG field to observe the victory over Strasbourg.