Messi’s PSG debut to wait as he and Neymar left out of Brest squad

Robin Bairner
Lionel Messi in Paris after signing for PSG from Barcelona

Lionel Messi will not make his Paris Saint-Germain debut in Friday’s Ligue 1 encounter against Brest as he has been left out of the squad to make the trip.

Messi arrived at PSG last week after more than two decades at Barcelona, and while he has been in training, after a month without competition he is not yet deemed match fit.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner, however, is not the only star who will not be with Mauricio Pochettino’s squad as they make the trip west to Brittany. His former Barcelona team-mate Neymar, now a veteran of four years in Paris, is also still building fitness and will not be involved, while this is also the case with Leandro Paredes.

Tickets on the black market for the fixture were going for two or three times the face value due to the slim possibility of Messi making his PSG bow during the game.

There is better news for PSG, however, with regards Marquinhos and Angel Di Maria, both of whom have travelled with the squad and both of whom are poised to be in the starting XI.

Donnarumma saves from Saka, Italy v England, Euro 2020

Meanwhile, Gianluigi Donnarumma has also flown to Brest, though the Italy international goalkeeper, another new summer free transfer, is most likely to be on the bench for this encounter. It is the first time he has been with the squad since joining from Milan.

His international colleague Marco Verratti is also poised to be among the substitutes.

PSG have picked up six points from six in their opening two matches, overcome Troyes and Strasbourg, despite having a severely depleted squad.

Pochettino’s men, however, are getting back up to full capacity and they will hope to have Messi and Neymar available by the time that they travel to Reims next weekend.