Nasser Al-Khelaifi hits back at Lionel Messi over lack of World Cup 2022 recognition claims


Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi has hit out at Lionel Messi after the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner claimed he did not receive credit from the club for winning the World Cup.

Messi inspired Argentina to victory in Qatar in December to secure the country’s first World Cup title in 36 years and complete his personal trophy haul after four previous World Cup tournaments ended in heartbreak for the superstar striker.

Messi, who joined PSG in 2021 when Barcelona were unable to sign him but has since left for Inter Miami, was presented with a personal trophy on his return to PSG after the tournament and was given a guard of honor by his teammates ahead of his debut. sessions back.

However, Messi appeared to face the lack of public fanfare in his first game as newly crowned world champion, citing what his fellow Argentines had achieved in their respective teams.

Messi seemed to understand why PSG were reluctant to praise him in front of their fans when he noted that Argentina beat France in the final. Lyon’s Nicolas Tagliafico was the only other player under contract with the French club. But that didn’t stop Messi from talking about it in a recent interview with ESPN.

“I was the only player [in the squad] who didn’t get [club] recognition,” he said. “It was understandable … because of [Argentina] [France] didn’t retain the World Cup.”

Asked about Messi’s comments in his own interview with RMC, Al-Khelaifi sought to clarify.

“As everyone saw – we even posted the video – we honored Messi in training and also celebrated in private,” he said.

“But with respect, we are a French club. Of course it made sense to celebrate in the stadium. [But] we have to respect the country he beat, the French and also our fans. Messi was with us and he is an incredible player. We were proud to have him here .”

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