Lionel Messi mentioned he is “in the proper place” to win one other Champions League trophy and cited a reunion with Neymar as a key think about his choice to signal with Paris Saint-Germain.
The 34-year-old Argentina star spoke at his introductory information convention at Parc des Princes stadium on Wednesday, the morning after signing a two-year take care of the choice for a 3rd season after leaving Barcelona.
“My purpose and dream is to boost one other Champion’s (League Trophy) and I consider that I’m in the proper place to have the most effective probabilities to attain that,” Messi mentioned.
“Once you see this squad, you actually need to play with them as a result of there are such a lot of potentialities,” he added. “Now we have the identical purpose. And Neymar in fact did lots and was essential for my alternative.”
Qatari-backed PSG has been determined to win the Champions League, falling simply quick when it misplaced the 2020 last to Bayern Munich. Messi helped Barcelona win 4 Champions League trophies.
Messi’s arrival offers PSG formidable attacking choices as he hyperlinks up with not solely Neymar — his former teammate at Barcelona — but additionally France World Cup winner Kylian Mbappe.
“I’m going to play with finest gamers, it’s very good, it’s unimaginable to have the ability to expertise this,” Messi mentioned when requested about enjoying with Mbappe and Neymar.
In addition to Neymar, he particularly cited Argentina teammates and PSG gamers Ángel di Maria and Leandro Paredes.
“Clearly, one of many causes (I got here) was the locker room: Neymar, Dí María, Paredes, whom I do know.”
Messi mentioned he’s “prepared” to begin enjoying with PSG, which hosts Strasbourg on Saturday night time.
“Once I really feel it, when the workers thinks I’m okay, I’ll be prepared. I’m keen to play,” he mentioned.
Messi turned probably the most high-profile free agent in soccer historical past after his makes an attempt to remain at Barcelona had been rejected final week by the Spanish league as a result of the wage wouldn’t adjust to monetary rules, with the Catalan membership burdened by money owed of greater than 1.2 billion euros ($1.4 billion).
PSG moved rapidly to signal the Argentina star. The group, Messi mentioned, “positioned themselves and every thing went actually quick and it was simple. It occurred in little time. It was a tough scenario they usually had been environment friendly.”
PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino rapidly made contact together with his fellow Argentine after Barcelona introduced final Thursday that Messi can be leaving the membership he joined as a 13-year-old boy.
Messi received each main honor with Barcelona and was granted a tearful exit information convention on Sunday to sign the tip of an period. Solely Cristiano Ronaldo within the present period challenges Messi’s standing as an all-time nice.
Whereas PSG needed to pay 222 million euros (then $261 million) to signal Neymar from Barcelona in 2017, there was no switch charge for Messi.
No wage particulars got, however an individual with data of the negotiations earlier advised The Related Press that Messi is ready to earn round 35 million euros ($41 million) web yearly. The individual mentioned on situation of anonymity earlier than the contract was signed.
PSG shall be hoping not solely that Messi helps the group regain the French title it misplaced to Lille final season however lastly win the Champions League.
Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi praised “a historic day for the membership, soccer world and it’s a incredible second for us.”
“Everyone is aware of Leo… He makes the soccer magic, stunning and he’s a winner. It will likely be very thrilling for our supporters and the followers worldwide,” he added. “Now we have huge ambition.”
The addition of Messi, Al-Khelaifi mentioned, ought to assist the group hold Mbappe longterm. The French star’s contract is ready to run out after the 2021-22 season.
“He wished a aggressive group and I feel we’ve got probably the most aggressive on the earth, so there isn’t any excuse for him now,” Al-Khelaifi mentioned. “He can’t do anything however keep.”
PSG supporters have seen their membership remodeled over the past decade for the reason that inflow of Qatari sovereign wealth funding linked to the emir. As soon as Messi’s Barcelona contract expired — and the Catalan membership was unable to afford to maintain him — PSG was one of many few golf equipment that would finance a deal to signal the six-time world participant of the yr.
Messi will put on the No. 30 jersey — the identical quantity he wore in his first two seasons with Barcelona earlier than switching to No. 19 after which the prized No. 10, which Neymar will get to maintain at PSG.