It is the end of one era and the beginning of another.
Lionel Messi has officially signed for PSG, ending his 21-year association with Barcelona.
Photo via PSG Official
It was a painful and emotional exit. Messi had only ever played for the Catalan side throughout his professional career, and was looking to sign an extension, but Barca were unable to offer him a contract due to La Liga’s financial fair-play requirements.
Their loss was PSG’s gain – the Paris club snapped Messi up on a free transfer, although it is estimated the Argentine will earn a whopping 35 million euros per year.
This marks a new beginning for Messi, who finds himself in the unusual position of playing for only his second senior club ever.
The pressure on him will be immense, knowing that the sole purpose he was brought to PSG is to help the French giants win the elusive Champions League.
Photo via Reuters
His arrival at the Parc des Princes also serves up the mouth-watering prospect of a new ‘M.N.M’ strike-force – Messi, alongside Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.
Since the start of his Barca career, Messi has thrived in three-man attacks – he started off alongside Ronaldinho and Samuel Eto’o…moved on to a new partnership with Eto’o and Thierry Henry…and was part of the ‘M.V.P’ lineup with David Villa and Pedro Rodriguez.
But perhaps the most famous (and most prolific) of these trios was the ‘M.S.N’ partnership with Neymar and Luis Suarez…scoring a combined 364 goals.
Now… Messi not only reunites with his former partner Neymar at PSG, but he also has Mbappe – arguably one of the best strikers in the game.
The ink on Messi’s contract has barely had time to dry, but people are already saying that PSG should have this season’s Ligue 1 title in the bag.
And with a lethal new strike-force, coupled with Messi’s vast European experience, the French giants are definitely favourites to finally get their hands on that Champions League trophy.
By: Nicholas Darren John