Argentine superstar targets Champions League glory with PSG after joining French club on a two-year contract; says he is relishing the opportunity to play with Neymar, Mbappe
Lionel Messi along with the PSG President Nasser Al-Khelaifi in Paris yesterday. Pic/AFP
Lionel Messi said he’s in the right place to win another Champions League trophy and cited a reunion with Neymar as a key factor in his decision to sign with PSG.
The Argentina star spoke at his introductory news conference at Parc des Princes stadium on Wednesday, the morning after signing a two-year deal with the option for a third season after leaving Barcelona.
“My goal and dream is to raise another Champion’s [League Trophy] and I believe that I am in the right place to have the best chances to achieve that,” Messi said. “When you see this squad, you really want to play with them because there are so many possibilities. We have the same goal. And Neymar did a lot and was important for my choice,” he added.
Qatari-backed PSG has been desperate to win the Champions League, falling just short when it lost the 2020 final to Bayern Munich. Messi helped Barcelona win four Champions League trophies.
Messi’s arrival gives PSG formidable attacking options as he links up with not only Neymar but also France World Cup winner Kylian Mbappe. “I’m going to play with best players, it’s incredible to be able to experience this,” said Messi, who also cited Argentina teammates and PSG players Angel di Maria and Leandro Paredes. “Obviously, one of the reasons [I came] was the locker room: Neymar, Di Maria, Paredes, whom I know.”
Ready to play
Messi said he is ready to start playing with PSG, which hosts Strasbourg on Saturday night. “When I feel it, when the staff thinks I’m ok, I’ll be ready. I’m willing to play,” he said.
The team, Messi said, “positioned themselves and everything went really fast and it was easy. It happened in little time. It was a difficult situation and they were efficient.”
No salary details were given, but a person with knowledge of the negotiations told that Messi will earn around 35 million euros (Rs 304cr) net annually.
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