Lionel Messi’s trip to Saudi Arabia a “misunderstanding” and PSG player won’t be fined

Lionel Messi (35) touched down in the Saudi Arabian on Monday, whilst over 4500 kilometres away in Paris, his Paris Saint-Germain teammates were in training at the Camp des Loges following the club’s 3-1 defeat at home against FC Lorient less than 24 hours earlier. RMC Sport are now reporting that Messi’s contractually obliged visit to the Gulf state is the result of a “misunderstanding,” and the Argentinian World Champion won’t be fined. 

Messi touched down in Riyadh on Monday. The PSG forward is a tourism ambassador for Saudi Arabia, and is making his second visit to the country, where according to Le Parisienhe is expected to spend “a few days.” However, L’Équipe later reported that the trip wasn’t sanctioned by manager Christophe Galtier, nor by Luís Campos, whilst the Argentine’s absence was a topic of lengthy discussion in the PSG dressing room, with some players reportedly “shocked.” 

The PSG players weren’t initially meant to train on Monday, or on Tuesday. However, following Sunday’s defeat to Lorient, Monday’s day off was cancelled, with players ordered to report to the club’s training ground, the Camps des Loges, for training. This, as RMC reports, is the source of the “misunderstanding” between the club and the player. 

Messi’s flight from Paris to the Saudi Arabian capital coincided with the cancellation of Monday’s day off, and whilst the World Champion’s long-term future at the Parc des Princes remains in the balance, the player won’t be fined for his absence. As originally planned, the PSG squad had the day off on Tuesday, and Messi is expected to return to the Camp des Loges on Wednesday, along with the rest of his teammates. 

GFFN | Luke Entwistle

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