Lionel Messi is reported to be homesick at Paris Saint-Germain, according to reports from El Confidencial.
Messi made an astonishing switch to French giants PSG in the summer and despite all the promise the move held for the Argentine and the club, he has been largely underwhelming on the pitch.
His goals and assists returns have reduced greatly but the little magician has shown Ligue 1 midfielders and defenders signs of his attacking prowess with his passing, brilliant runs, and many accurate shots, a few of which have hit the crossbar and many of which have been saved.
What is most glaring is his overall gameplay which has seen him top the charts of players who have been dispossessed the most in the league. El Confidencial claims that all his struggles on the pitch for PSG is due to the fact that he is still homesick, having left Barcelona, the city he called home for more than two decades, for a new city.
The Argentina national team captain and his family are yet to fully settle into Paris culture and to acclimatise to the weather, which is a lot cooler than that of Barcelona’s with a lot more rain, according to the report.
He has also been faced with minor injuries since the switch as he adjusts to the pace and physicality of the French game, which is more than what he was used to for more than two decades in Spain.
The reports have also stated that Messi has remained very professional while at PSG which is why his outward demeanour has been one of unhappiness.
Messi travelled back to his Barcelona home in Castelldefels during the international break to reconnect with his roots in order to gain some push for the rest of the season. This was after he opted against going with Argentina to their CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers having already secured a spot at the World Cup in Qatar later in December.
PSG have also done their best to help Messi settle, organising private French language classes for his family as well as assigning a chaperone to them for events.
Messi’s former El Clasico rival Karim Benzema recently hit back at the Argentine’s critics who claimed that Messi will fail at PSG, saying that they know nothing about football and that the 34-year-old was only adapting to a new league.
PSG will hope that all their efforts to get Messi settled in pay off in this season, having already been faced with the potential failures of two of their marquee signings – out of form Geroginio Wijnaldum and injury stricken Sergio Ramos – who came in with Messi in the summer.
Elsewhere, El Nacional reports that Messi has warned Barcelona manager and close friend Xavi Hernandez against re-signing former Barcelona young talent Xavi Simons who is currently teammates with Messi at PSG.
Messi had dinner with some of his Barcelona mates when he travelled to the City during the international break and some of the discussions surrounded Barcelona’s transfer plans.
Messi reportedly told Xavi, who was considering a move for his namesake at the time, to focus elsewhere as he believed the youngster had not matured any more than he had since leaving the Catalan club.
Messi trained with Simons on a few occasions while the young Dutch midfielder was still at Barcelona and was considered a wonderkid. He now regularly trains with Simons in the senior PSG squad and as such, gets to witness the 18-year-old’s ability more often.
Simons is reportedly keen on returning to the Catalan giants and manager Xavi was willing to have him return, but has now put off those plans after speaking with Messi.
PSG want to tie down the 18-year-old to a new contract however, as his current one is set to expire at the end of the season. They are also open to his exit if any lucrative offers come for him.