Messi begins his first PSG game since the World Cup

Messi begins his first PSG game since the World Cup.

Lionel Messi has returned to the Paris Saint-Germain squad for Wednesday night’s Ligue 1 match against Angers. Meanwhile, Kylian Mbappe is taking a sabbatical from the squad.

Messi had not played since 18 December, when he led Argentina to World Cup victory as captain and has been afforded time off at his South American home. A week ago, though, the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner, who will likely win his eighth in 2023, returned to PSG training.

As he returned to the club’s training ground for the first time since November, his PSG teammates formed a guard of honor, and sports director Luis Henrique presented him with a special trophy to celebrate his accomplishments.

Mbappe, who also participated in the World Cup final and scored a hat-trick for France, returned to action 10 days after the competition for PSG’s Ligue 1 victory over Strasbourg. However, the 23-year-old has subsequently been given personal leave.

There have been rumors of a schism between Mbappe and Messi, which will undoubtedly be fueled by one player’s comeback coinciding with the other’s absence. However, coach Christophe Galtier has previously denied the existence of any great difficulties.

Towards the end of last month, he said, “There is no need to confound the connection between Kylian and Leo.”