Lionel Messi endured a difficult return to Paris Saint-Germain’s starting line-up as some of his own team’s fans booed the Argentine before and during PSG’s convincing victory over Ajaccio at the Parc des Princes.
This was the first time Messi had featured for PSG since he received a club-imposed suspension earlier this month for taking an unauthorized trip to Saudi Arabia, resulting in a missed training session.
Lionel Messi attends at red carpet during Laureus World Sports Awards at Cour VendÃ’me , Paris, France, On May 08 2023.//03PARIENTE_0953153/Credit:JP PARIENTE/SIPA/2305091004 (Sipa via AP Images)
One-on-one with World Cup winner Lionel Messi
The World Cup-winning forward has since apologized to PSG and his teammates, saying he “sincerely thought” that he had a free day.
But some PSG fans made their feelings known during the 5-0 win on Saturday, which moved the club closer to a record 11th Ligue 1 title.
It isn’t the first time Messi has been booed by some of PSG’s fans this season. In March both Messi and Neymar were booed by a significant section of PSG fans.
Earlier last week, Messi’s representatives rubbished rumors that he had agreed to join a club in Saudi Arabia after his contract at PSG ends on June 30.
On Saturday, goals from Fabián Ruiz, Achraf Hakimi in the first half, followed by a Kylian Mbappé brace and a Mohamed Youssouf own goal secured a win which moved PSG to 81 points with three games remaining – six points ahead of second-placed Lens.
Both teams ended the match with 10 men after Hakimi and Ajaccio’s Thomas Mangani were sent off late in the game.