Dubai: Lionel Messi’s time at Paris Saint Germain has not been all smooth sailing. On Saturday, as the Ligue 1 defending champions suffered their seventh defeat of the season at home to Lyon, some PSG fans expressed their displeasure with the Argentine by whistling and booing his name when it was announced.
This is the second time this season that this has happened.
He was targeted by supporters who jeered and whistled at him during the Ligue 1 match against Rennes which PSG lost 2-0 last month.
This is no way to treat such a legend of the game who has achieved so much in his glittering career. In fact, I believe that might just be the last straw for him. Why should he stay at a club whose fans clearly do not appreciate him?
He is still one of the greatest footballers of all time and his incredible skills have not diminished at all. That wonderful left foot is as great as ever and he has single handedly won the team several matches with his outstanding displays. So, why are they turning on him? By booing such an iconic figure, they are making his decision whether to stay in Paris or to leave so much easier.
He has been linked with a potential move back to Barcelona when his contract expires this summer. Granted, he has not had a great record in the Champions League in his two seasons with the French giants with the club being knocked out of the last-16 stage both times. But then you can’t blame an individual. Football, remember, is a team game.
Neymar has let them club down far more times than Messi. Perhaps both could leave this summer and the team starts fresh. It will be very interesting to see what happens but booing Messi, who has won the Ballon d’Or seven times, is just wrong.
Although some fans chanted his name in support during the Lyon match, the whistles were an indication that not all supporters are happy with the Argentine’s recent performances.
Lyon forward Bradley Barcola scored the only goal of the game, and PSG were booed off the pitch at full time. It coud have been worse had Alexandre Lacazette not missed a penalty, but they came close to an equaliser when Kylian Mbappe, the club’s all-time top scorer, saw his shot saved late in the game.
PSG’s defeat leaves them with only a six-point lead over Lens and Marseille, with nine games left to play. The club has lost seven out of 18 matches in all competitions since the end of the World Cup, after having been unbeaten in all 22 games before the break.
29 goals in 67 games
Messi, who has scored 29 goals in 67 games for PSG, is in talks with the club to extend his contract. However, Barca, Inter Milan and Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia are keen to sign the Argentine World Cup winner.
It is clear that Messi’s time at PSG has not been a bed of roses. While some fans have shown support, others have expressed their disappointment with his recent displays, and the club has struggled to maintain their previous winning form.
Whether he will stay in France, return to Spain or move to the Middle East like his arch enemy Cristiano Ronaldo has done remains to be seen, but the 35-year-old’s future is definitely up in the air.
I believe he will ditch Europe and if he does he will be far more appreciated in the Saudi Pro League with Al Hilal. It would not surprise me one bit to see him playing in the Middle East next season.