Lionel Messi Accused Of ‘Disrespecting’ Mauricio Pochettino After Not Updating PSG Manager Of COVID Status
Lionel Messi has been blasted for his “very shocking” behaviour after not giving Paris Saint-Germain manager Mauricio Pochettino updates over his COVID status.
The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner was spotted enjoying himself at a concert with wife Antonela Roccuzzo in Rosario, Santa Fe, during French football’s winter break.
PSG confirmed last week that Messi tested positive for coronavirus, but it is unknown if the Argentine superstar caught the virus at the aforementioned concert.
Messi was ruled out of action for PSG’s 4-0 thumping of Vannes in their round-of-32 clash in the French Cup on Monday.
The 34-year-old PSG forward has since returned to Paris after his isolation period and is set to resume training after recovering.
It is said that Messi, who signed for PSG last summer, is targeting his return for the Parisian-based side’s match with Lyon on Sunday.
According to reports in France, Pochettino was only informed of Messi’s positive COVID test through third parties.
Now, former PSG winger Jerome Rothen admitted that he was shocked that Messi had not updated Pochettino about his situation.
“You must always respect your coach, this is what I was taught in Clairefontaine,” he told Radio Monte Carlo.
“The coach must be above everyone else, it does not matter if it is a star or a youth player — the boss must be the head of the time.
“Pochettino was not updated as to where Messi was, and that explains a lot of things. This is not a good thing and I think it is very shocking from Messi.”
Messi has made 16 appearances for PSG and scored six times and registered five assists in all competitions this season.
The Barcelona legend has picked up all five assists in Ligue 1, but Messi has only managed to score once in 11 Ligue 1 appearances.
Rothen, who scored 13 times in 180 appearances for PSG from 2004 to 2010, accused Messi of ‘disrespecting’ Pochettino.
“Pochettino is being disrespected by Lionel Messi,” he added.
“The coach must be the strong man, the one who shows the real values. The only one who strongly respects him, in my opinion, is Kylian Mbappe and I do not sense anything with the other players.
“If you don’t respect your coach, then you cannot be successful. PSG has suffered a lot from this in recent years.”
PSG are currently top of Ligue 1 and hold a 13-point lead over Nice in the French title race.
Featured Image Credit: PA