‘Trip to Saudi Arabia earns Messi two weeks suspension at PSG’
Lionel Messi has been suspended by his club Paris Saint-Germain for two weeks, several French media report. The Argentine caused a stir as he appeared to be staying in Saudi Arabia instead of appearing at training in Paris.
The top French club subsequently imposed a two-week suspension on Messi. The striker, who will also not be welcome on the training pitch for the coming period and will not receive a salary, will therefore miss the league matches with Troyes and AC Ajaccio. The next game in which Messi could return to action is the game with Auxerre on May 21.
Leaders PSG are five points ahead of Olympique Marseille with five games to play. In the Champions League, the club lost to Bayern Munich in the eighth finals in early March.
Messi is a tourist ambassador to Saudi Arabia and therefore flew to the Gulf state with his family. Initially, this was not a problem because PSG’s selection would have two days off.
However, coach Christophe Galtier had withdrawn one of those days off after last Sunday’s embarrassing 3-1 home defeat against Lorient. He expected everyone on the training field on Monday, but Messi was already on his way to the Gulf state at that time.
According to French sports newspaper L’Équipe, Messi had previously requested leave to travel to Saudi Arabia, but that request was denied. But even the withdrawal of the day off apparently did not bother the Argentine.
In addition to the punishment from the club’s management, Messi’s behavior also sets off bad blood among his teammates. According to L’Équipe, they reacted with shock at the news that the vedette had flown to Saudi Arabia.
On the way out?
Messi’s journey is the next chapter in the troubled marriage between him and PSG. The Argentine is increasingly being whistled at by his own crowd and is said to no longer lie very well in the dressing room.
“Messi and PSG’s paths will part,” L’Équipe previously headlined.
Partly because of all the perils, he has not yet renewed his expiring contract. All of this also fuels rumors that Messi may fancy a return to FC Barcelona or opt for a lucrative adventure in Saudi Arabia.