Paris Saint-Germain chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi has hit out at Lionel Messi for lacking “respect” towards the Ligue 1 champions.
Messi, who scored 32 goals in 74 games for the French club before his summer departure, publicly criticised PSG for not honouring his World Cup win with Argentina.
Speaking toOlgaback in September, he said: “I was the only player that didn’t receive recognition from the club compared to my 25 other teammates.”
The eight-time Ballon d’Or winner did receive a special guard of honour from his PSG teammates after returning from a 10-day break following the celebrations.
But it appears Messi’s issue is with those in the boardroom.
Messi reportedly wanted to present the World Cup at the Parc des Princes before a game but the club feared the reaction would be negative given Argentina beat teammate Kylian Mbappe and France.
Shortly after Messi’s comments in September, Paris Saint Germain president Nasser Al Khelaifi responded to Messi over the Argentine’s World Cup claims.
“As everyone saw, because we even published a video, we celebrated Messi in training, and we also celebrated him in private,” he toldRMC Sport.
“But with respect, we are a French club. It was of course sensitive to celebrate at the stadium. We must respect the country he defeated, his teammates on the France team, and our supporters too.”
Now, Al Khelaifi has gone one step further by criticising Messi for showing a lack of respect towards his former employer.
“He’s not a bad guy but I don’t like it,” Al-Khelaifi toldRMC Sport.
“I’ll say, not just for him but for everyone, we talk when we’re there, not when we’re gone. That’s not our style… I have great respect for him [Messi] but if someone wants to speak badly about Paris Saint-Germain afterwards, that’s not good. That’s not respect.”
He added: “If anyone talks about the fact that we didn’t celebrate him enough after he won the World Cup, we’re in France and he won against Kylian.
“We are a French club. I don’t want the whole stadium to be against him either.”