Revealed: From Hugs for a Bitter Rival to Solo Training Drills, How Messi Spent His First Day at PSG
In what was a crazy sequence of events, Lionel Messi's 21-year-long association with Spanish giants Barcelona came to an end before the Argentina skipper joined French club Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) on Tuesday.
Ever since his arrival at the Parc des Princes, 34-year-old Lionel Messi's schedule has been quite hectic, including the signing of the contract with the Ligue 1 club, a medical examination, his official unveiling as a PSG player followed by an introductory press conference and a series of interviews.
However, on Thursday, Messi finally greeted his teammates before training with them in the French capital.
While his meeting with 22-year-old superstar Kylian Mbappe
was much talked about in the press, the people waited with bated breath to witness the union of two of the biggest stars in football.
Staying true to his down-to-earth nature, Messi not only greeted the prodigious Frenchman, but went on to hug him as well.
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However, his longest conversation was with former Barcelona colleagues Rafinha and Neymar.
It is no secret that Messi and Neymar forged a great friendship in Barcelona. That's why their camaraderie was quite visible on Messi's first day at the club.
But what simply broke the internet on his first day as a PSG player was Messi's embrace of Sergio Ramos
, a long-time La Liga foe, who had captained Barca's El Clasico rivals Real Madrid.
Their iconic hug almost instantly went viral on social media, with many users terming their union as "madness".
Ramos and Messi were once symbols of the greatest rivalry in football due to the animosity between the Catalonian team and that of the Spanish capital.
Lionel Messi and Sergio Ramos friends. What a bizarre world 🤣 pic.twitter.com/FFeVmlByTq
Apart from greeting and meeting his teammates, Leo Messi
took part in a series of solo drills at the Camp des Loges training complex, which was followed by a training session with his teammates.
12 August 2021, 13:15 GMT
According to Spanish media outlet Marca, Messi's excitement to meet his new teammates and start his training was quite evident as he arrived at the training venue at least two hours before the actual training session.
While he reached the Camp des Loges training complex around 9.15 a.m., PSG's session only started at 11 a.m.
One of the main reasons behind Messi's eagerness to start with his training at PSG could be his lack of a proper pre-season in Spain.
Messi, who was on national duty in July, went on an extended holiday after ending his international trophy drought with Argentina's Copa America triumph last month.
"I've been out of action for around a month and I need to get physically ready. I hope to be ready as soon as possible, because I can't wait to play," Messi said in a press conference on Wednesday.