Rondos, team barbecues and house hunting

They won the last training game on Tuesday morning. Of course they did. Only during his full second practice with the whole Paris St. Germain Cadre, Lionel Messi was on the winning side and which teammates he had to work with: Keylor Navas, Neymar, Angel Di Maria, Julian Draxler and Kylian Mbappe. Your opponents, including Mauro Icardi, Brands, Marco Verratti and Achraf Hakimicouldn’t do anything. Messi’s side wouldn’t lose and the Argentine is already king of the Camp des Loges, the Parisian training ground. More importantly, Messi is finally feeling like a soccer player again.

After breaking the internet and using any social media network its sensational finish the end Barcelona on August 5th, Messi’s life slowly returns to a sort of normalcy. His arrival in the French capital, the scenes at Le Bourget Airport, in the Parc des Princes or in front of his luxurious hotel near the Champs Elysees impressed him. It is possible that he did not expect such a reception from PSG fans, which makes sense: he had never changed clubs in his entire career, which was a first for him.

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The “Messimania” in Paris, in France and all over the world, was huge. On Saturday, the Parc des Princes exploded for its pre-game presentation against Strasbourg. The club put on a show and won 4-2 after taking a 3-0 lead and Messi really appreciated it all.

The Messi family has always loved Paris as a city. In the past, his wife Antonela was often visiting for shopping or fashion week, which usually takes place at the end of September / beginning of October. Together they took their three boys Thiago, Mateo and Ciro, also several times to Disneyland Paris. Last week, the six-time Ballon d’Or winner discovered Paris as a football city and loves passion and euphoria, but also appreciates the quiet moments.

2 relatives

At the Hotel Le Royal Monceau, where he is currently staying in a suite worth 20,000 euros per night, he is left alone. When he and Antonela went out to dinner for two for the first time on Monday evening, they went to Cesar, one of the best Italian restaurants in town – and a place where PSG players and celebrities love to eat. They made the short drive from Avenue Hoche to Avenue de Wagram, on the other side of the Arc de Triomphe, and again nobody bothered them but two young fans for whom he was signing autographs in the restaurant.

As he gets used to the city and its prey, it’s time for him to get back to work too.

On Sunday he took part in a couple of “rondos” and then humiliated midfielders Idrissa Gueye at Teqball, the sport that combines football with table tennis and is played on a curved table. On Monday, his new teammates (or at least those who had never played with him before) got a taste of Messi’s talent during his first real training session together.

Messi received a loud reception from PSG fans during Sunday’s game and has gotten used to life in the French capital well. Getty

Even without match fitness and after I haven’t kicked a ball in over a month Argentina‘s Copa America win, Messi was amazing and impressed everyone. He was the “free player” in main training, that is, he played for both teams during the small games. It all looked easy to him, but he was fantastic.

On Tuesday, Mauricio Pochettino paired Messi with Mbappe in the 2v2 exercises. Let’s say they found each other very well and scored a lot of goals. Then they were both on the winning team in the last 6v6 drill, when Neymar, Messi and Mbappe actually played together for the first time.

📸 Today’s winners in training 🏆


– Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_English) 17th August 2021

There were lots of smiles and laughter in the square and in the locker room where Messi found his place really easily. Of course he was invited on Sunday Other Herrera‘s 32nd birthday party at the midfielder’s house – Neymar, Di Maria, Paredes, Navas, Marquinhos, Icardi and many others attended. Messi also loved the asado (the Argentine version of a barbecue) that was organized on the training ground on the Sunday after training.

One thing is certain in the first week, although it is still too early in his time at the club: Messi’s arrival has already increased the training effort. “Everyone wants to show him how good they are. Even with rondos you can see the difference. He’s raised the level and the buzz around the area is incredible too, ”a source told ESPN.

While Messi is happy in training and waiting to make his PSG debut – he will most likely play his first minutes away at Reims on August 29 – there is also the more practical side of adapting to a new team. At the top of the list: find a house for the family and a school for the children.

The Federico Garcia Lorca Spanish School, not far from the Champs Elysees, could welcome Thiago, Mateo and Ciro. In terms of comfort, he would like something similar to his previous home in Castelldefels with a swimming pool and a large garden; To find it, he has to drive to a suburb like Neuilly or Bougival (the latter is Neymar’s home) just outside Paris, though he could also choose to stay within the city limits.

Pepe Costa, his personal assistant who looked after him for many years in Barcelona, ​​joined him in Paris (as expected). With a little bit of luck, Pepe should have no problem getting good tips about living in Paris from his own son Alvaro, who is Neymar’s personal assistant. While he is getting fit again, one thing is clear: Messi and his family are in good hands in Paris.

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