Paris Saint-Germain Talisman Lionel Messi Tests Negative for COVID-19, Flies Back to France
© AP Photo / Rafael YaghobzadehLionel Messi waves to Paris Saint-Germain supporters Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2021 outside the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris
© AP Photo / Rafael Yaghobzadeh
Football legend Lionel Messi was on a rollercoaster ride in 2021. While he ended his long wait for an international title by capturing the Copa America title for Argentina, his 21-year association with Barcelona also culminated in a tearful exit. More bad news awaited the Argentina skipper as the deadly coronavirus infected him after Christmas.
Seven-time Ballon d'Or winner Lionel Messi has flown back to Paris after recovering from COVID-19, Argentine media reported on Wednesday.
The Copa America winner tested positive for the highly infectious virus while on vacation in his home country of Argentina during the festive season. Subsequently, he went into isolation in his native town of Rosario.
While Messi had tested positive on 28 December, his current employers Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) only confirmed it on 2 January.
On Tuesday, his result came out negative and immediately after Messi, his wife and their children left their isolation facility situated in Funes Hills in his native town of Rosario.
Hours later, Messi was seen boarding a private plane at Rosario airport in the wee hours of Wednesday.
As Messi was in isolation for more than a week, PSG's medical team would assess his fitness before giving him a go ahead to train at the club's training facility in the French capital.
PSG will square-off against Lyon in Ligue 1 on Sunday, but chances of Messi featuring in the game are miniscule.
Mauricio Pochettino is not known for taking any chances whatsoever regarding the fitness of his players, and when that player is Messi, the PSG boss would not risk an injury with half the season still remaining.