Messi: PSG never honoured me for World Cup win

Lionel Messi said he resents not having been recognised by Paris Saint-Germain for his World Cup triumph, especially as all of his Argentina teammates were honoured by their respective clubs.

Messi scored twice in the final and also converted a penalty in the shootout as Argentina won 4-2 on penalties against France at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

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Regarding his return to Paris after the World Cup, Messi told ESPN’s Migue Granados: “I was the only player of the 25 that didn’t get a [club] recognition.”

He then added: “It was understandable … because of us [Argentina], they [France] didn’t retain the World Cup.”

Messi, who left PSG in June after his contract expired, found it difficult to adapt to Paris and admitted there was a “fracture with a significant group of the PSG fans” during his two seasons at the club.

Asked whether he would have liked not to have moved to Paris, Messi said: “It happened like that. It was not what I expected, but I always say things happen for a reason. Even if I wasn’t well there, it happened that I was world champion while I was there.”

Messi is enjoying his football and his life at Inter Miami CF.

“I love what I do, I enjoy playing, and now it’s a different way,” the former Barcelona star added in the interview for Granados’ “Soné que volaba” program broadcast on his YouTube channel. “That is why I made the decision to come to Miami and not continue my career elsewhere: you experience it a different way.”

Messi, who is under contract with Inter Miami until December 2025, is not thinking about retiring any time soon.

“I haven’t thought about it [retiring], I don’t want to think about it because I want to continue to enjoy what I do,” he said. “I took an important step by leaving Europe and coming here, and I don’t want to think about the next step.”

Messi, 36, has not ruled out returning to play for boyhood club Newell’s Old Boys before he retires.

He said: “I always had that idea, and more so after being world champions — to be able to enjoy Argentinian football and to play at Newell’s — but I don’t know.”

Messi confirmed he will play at the 2024 Copa América but is unsure whether he will play at the 2026 World Cup.

Copa América will be hosted in the United States from June 20 to July 14, 2024, a prelude to the U.S., Canada and Mexico hosting the World Cup in 2026.

“I do think about the Copa América,” he said. “After the Copa América, we will see, it depends on how I feel. I will see how I feel day by day; there are three years to go.

“I don’t notice if my level of play is declining; I stop and play as always. But there is a reality: I’m older, I have a thousand games behind me, and time passes for everyone.”

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