UEFA Champions League: Why is Lionel Messi not playing for PSG vs. Benfica?

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Paris Saint-Germain take on Benfica on Matchday 4 of the 2022-23 UEFA Champions League group stage. Find out here why Lionel Messi won’t play for Christophe Galtier’s side.

With Qatar 2022 just around the corner, the 2022-23 Champions League group stage schedule is tight. PSG and Benfica will meet for the second week in a row on Tuesday, October 11, but this time Lionel Messi will not be part of the France squad.

Paris Saint-Germain were denied a crucial win in Lisbon last week when Messi’s opener was canceled out by the hosts. Now the French side are tied with Benfica in Group H, each on seven points.

Therefore, Christophe Galtier must now do the work at home to get one step closer to the last eight. However, it will be a tall order to try to do so without the Argentine star on the pitch.

What injury does Lionel Messi have?

Lionel Messi was ruled out for this fixture after suffering a slight calf strain during PSG’s 1-1 draw with Benfica last week. Messi asked to be subbed off in the final minutes and missed the Reims draw on Saturday.

The former Barcelona star, however, is understood to be better than a few days ago. So why is he not playing? Well, the player, coaching staff and team doctors decided it wasn’t worth the risk.

Messi carries PSG’s aspirations for this season, so it’s better for him to be back once he’s 100% fit. In addition, the FIFA World Cup is looming around and it’s well known that Messi doesn’t want to miss it for anything in the world.

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