Lionel Messi STARTS his first PSG match in the Champions League group stage match at Club Brugge, alongside Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, as the football world sees the all-star front three for the first time
- Lionel Messi got his first PSG start on Wednesday night
- The Argentinian starts the club’s Champions League match at Club Brugge
- Messi starts up front with Kylian Mbappe and Neymar in a devastating frontline
- Neymar and Messi get together for the first time since 2017
Lionel Messi kicks off his first-ever Paris Saint-Germain game tonight after the Argentine was named in an all-star front three with Kylian Mbappe and Neymar.
The former Barcelona captain moved to the French capital last month but has been limited to just 24 minutes of action in a PSG shirt since he made his high-profile free transfer.
But Mauricio Pochettino has put an end to the long wait for PSG fans, as Messi started his trip to Club Brugge on Wednesday evening with Mbappe and Neymar backing him in the attack.
Lionel Messi will make his first Paris Saint-Germain start in their European draw at Club Brugge
Messi (second from left) starts up front with stars Kylian Mbappe (center) and Neymar (right)
Achraf Hakimi and Georginio Wijnaldum also make Champions League debuts in PSG colors, while Keylor Navas is preferred to Gianluigi Donnarumma in goal while Sergio Ramos is not yet back from injury.
This will be Messi’s first-ever Champions League appearance, not in a Barcelona shirt, after winning four European titles with the Catalans. His last success in the competition came in 2015 when he led Barcelona to the treble alongside Neymar.
Now, two cogs of the infamous ‘MSN’ partnership with Luis Suarez will come together on the pitch for the first time in four years and will lead PSG’s charge to win a first-ever Champions League trophy after near misses in previous years.
It is the first time Neymar (left) and Messi (right) have come together since the summer of 2017
Neymar and PSG were defeated by Bayern Munich in the 2020 final, before the French giants were dumped from last season’s final by that tournament’s defeated finalists, Manchester City.
Messi’s move to PSG was announced on August 11, but Messi had to wait for a first start at his new club for various reasons.
The 34-year-old hadn’t even played a minute of the preseason in Barcelona due to his Copa America involvement, so he needed some time to improve his fitness after making his long-awaited move.
Neymar (right) and Messi (center) led Barcelona to the 2015 Champions League trophy
Messi came off the bench for his PSG debut in a 2-0 win at Stade de Reims on August 29, but then flew to South America for the international break and his late return forced him out of PSG’s next game – a 4-0 win over Clermont Foot on Saturday.
Meanwhile, PSG have managed to hold onto fellow attackers Mbappe and Neymar after several years of ongoing speculation about their future.
Brazilian forward Neymar signed a new contract with the club in May, while Mbappe was the subject of several bids from Real Madrid after Messi completed his move to PSG, but the French club remained steadfast and rejected any approach.
PSG XI vs Club Brugge: Keylor Navas; Hakimi, Marquinhos, Kimpembe, Diallo; Ander Herrera, Paredes, Wijnaldum; Messi , Mbappe , Neymar