Shortly after the announcement of Lionel Messi’s (35) two-week suspension by Paris Saint-Germain, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Tourism, Ahmed Al Khateeb, shared pictures of the Argentine’s unauthorised trip to the country.
The visit, which is part of Messi’s contractual obligations as an ambassador for Saudi Arabia, wasn’t sanctioned by manager Christophe Galtier, nor by Sporting Advisor Luís Campos, whilst the Argentine’s absence was a topic of lengthy discussion in the PSG dressing room, with some players reportedly “shocked.” PSG’s response was as swift as stunning. Messi has been suspended for two weeks by the club. He is now banned from PSG’s training facilities and docked pay. The 2022 World Cup winner is now expected to leave Les Parisiens at the end of the season.
Saudi Arabia’s Minister for Tourism Ahmed Al Khateeb took to Twitter to share pictures of Messi with his wife Antonela Roccuzzo and two of his sons, Ciro and Mateo. The Argentine had taken the trip to the Gulf state as part of his commitments as the country’s tourism ambassador, and as a result, skipped PSG training – Monday was set to be a day off for the players in the event of a victory against FC Lorient on Sunday, but the squad was present at the Camp des Loges following a 3-1 defeat at the Parc des Princes.
“Messi & his family treated themselves to a delightful selection of international cuisine & a luxurious shopping experience in #ViaRiyadh followed by a fun-filled afternoon of games, VR experiences, & quality family time at Riyadh City Boulevard”, said Al Khateeb.
GFFN | Bastien Cheval