PSG legend accuses Messi of ‘disappearing when it matters’
Lionel Messi’s performance against Bayern Munich has been heavily criticised after Paris Saint Germain’s sorry exit from the Champions League.
On Wednesday night, PSG failed to overturn a 1-0 deficit as Bayern ran out 2-0 winners thanks to goals from Eric Maxim Choupo Moting and Serg Gnabry.
Even with the likes of Messi and Kylian Mbappe on their side, the French champions failed the score a single goal during the two matches against the Bavarian club and former PSG winger, Jerome Rothen, criticised Messi’s performance in the two legs.
He said on French radio station RMC: “Messi, we don’t want it. He doesn’t want to get involved in this club. He says he’s ‘acclimatised’ now, but what are you acclimatised to?
“You scored 18 goals or 16 assists this year against Angers and Clermont? But in the matches that matter, you disappear.
“The joke is that we saw his matches at the World Cup, I saw his movements, how he invested himself. I don’t mind it, considering it’s the national team jersey, a separate thing, but hey, respect the club in the capital a little, which allows you to maintain a status and salary.
“Only PSG could give him that and, obviously, PSG fell at his feet because they thought Messi was going to make us win (the Champions League). But he doesn’t win us anything.”
Rothen went on to advise PSG not to extend the player’s contract, which is due to expire in the summer.
He added: “In terms of image and what it reflects, I can’t understand why Messi wants to extend the adventure here.
“He makes no effort to put the club ahead of him. He never thanks the fans, he lowers his head and goes to the dressing room.
“Even when he celebrates goals and his name is chanted, he never has a gesture for the fans to thank them for their support. He doesn’t want to invest in the project. Because of that, I don’t think it’s a good idea for it to continue.”
PSG will now focus solely on Ligue 1 as they look to defend their domestic crown.