Lionel Messi Registers Worst Career Tally for PSG in Ligue 1, Shines in Champions League

© AFP 2022 / GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELTParis Saint-Germain's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi speaks to the crowd as he is introduced during a presentation ceremony prior to the French L1 football match between Paris Saint-Germain and Racing Club Strasbourg at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris on August 14, 2021.
Paris Saint-Germain's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi speaks to the crowd as he is introduced during a presentation ceremony prior to the French L1 football match between Paris Saint-Germain and Racing Club Strasbourg at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris on August 14, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.12.2021
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Widely regarded as one of the greatest footballers of all time, Lionel Messi has been a goal-scoring behemoth throughout his career. The iconic player registered a staggering 672 goals in 778 games for Barcelona and was their top scorer in each of the last 15 seasons. But his association with Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) hasn't borne similar fruits.
In a year which saw possibly the biggest transfer in football history, Lionel Messi switched to PSG from his boyhood club Barcelona after yet another prolific season for the Catalan giants.
The Argentine wizard's impact at the Parisian club, however, hasn't been as impressive as was expected from him.
In fact, Messi's numbers are much worse than his first campaign for Barca in 2004-05 when he had recorded a goal every 75 minutes in the La Liga followed by a goal every 155 minutes the next season.
On the other hand, the talismanic footballer has collected a solitary goal in Ligue 1 in 865 minutes.
Moreover, unlike at the Spanish club, where he was the sole mega star, at PSG, Messi has played second fiddle to Mbappe with the Frenchman being an established man for Mauricio Pochettino and his support staff, considering he has been playing for the club since 2017.
While Messi's poor display in the French league has been well documented, he has been the central figure in PSG's ongoing Champions League campaign.
During the group stage, Messi scored a super impressive five goals with his double against RB Leipzig hogging the limelight. In the process, the superstar also powered the Parisian team to the knockout phase of the prestigious tournament.
Despite Messi's unimposing numbers, PSG's top brass, including sporting director Leonardo Nascimento de Araujo, has backed the Argentina captain to the hilt.
Last week, Leonardo had taken a dig at Messi's critics besides making it clear that he wasn't worried about the legendary footballer's lack of goals in the French capital.
"Messi is indisputable", Leonardo said. "If you start arguing about Messi, you know nothing about football".
More so, his numbers were not so bad if one took into account that Messi has also provided four assists in PSG's games, making a significant contribution in a couple of the club's victories in Ligue 1.
According to some Spanish and French publications, including Marca, Messi is still adjusting to life in a new city and the club.
In addition to that, international breaks have come at an inopportune time for him as he has been unable to find any sort of momentum and rhythm while playing for PSG.
Messi is currently enjoying his Christmas and New Year holidays and will only be back in action on 3 January when PSG will square-off against Vannes in a Ligue 1 encounter.
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