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Guardiola: “I’m sure Messi will be happy in Paris”

Pep Guardiola’s reunions with Lionel Messi in the Champions League always had the bittersweet flavor of nostalgia. There were four games. They were resolved between 2015 and 2016 with two victories in favor of Guardiola and two in favor of Messi. This night will be different. For the first time in this series of duels between the coach and the one who was his fetish footballer, Messi will not wear the Barcelona shirt but that of Paris Saint-Germain, transformed with his signing, last summer, into the most spectacular football experiment. dazzling of the decade.

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  • Historic Manchester City
  • A kingdom for Messi
  • Messi smiles in Paris

“It’s surprising for everyone,” Guardiola said on Monday, when asked if the experience was not strange to him. “But it has happened and we have to accept it. We couldn’t have imagined him a few years ago… I’m sure he will be happy in Paris. We have been fortunate to enjoy it for 16 years. Messi speaks for himself. What he has done in his career is more than exceptional. I hope he plays this Tuesday, for the sake of football. “

The laconic official reports of PSG say that Messi – surprisingly replaced by Mauricio Pochettino in the match against Lyon – suffers a “concussion” that has kept him out of the competition in the last two days of Ligue 1. Not usual, if you are consider that all players, without exception, end games bruised. “He has trained well and will be in the squad,” Pochettino said yesterday, without confirming his ownership. “His situation is the same as Verratti’s.”

The Group A match, which includes City, Leipzig, PSG and Brugge, is redoubling its significance for many reasons. First, because it measures the major financial powers of the Persian Gulf in the football industry, with all that that means. The cross that faced them in the semifinals of the Champions League last year resulted in two historic victories for City: 1-2 and 2-0. “That was last year,” Guardiola said. “They already had a fantastic team then and today they also have Messi.”

Pochettino: “We are a team under construction”

Guardiola overrated his adversary and Pochettino tried to shift the burden on his rival in the typical psychological game that anticipates heads-up between coaches. “It is a fact that we are a team under construction,” said the Argentine. “It is not debatable. We are going to play against a City that under the hand of the best coach in the world is building the dream of winning the Champions League. We have the same dream, but in this process City is much further ahead than PSG ”.

In tune with Pochettino’s speech, Ander Herrera, who officiates the difficult work of hitching the team with the most party in Europe, pointed out that at PSG the pressure is exorbitant. “We have challenges in every game we play,” said the Spaniard, when asked if City would be a touchstone in the epic that places PSG as the great contender for the title. “Against us the rivals bring out the best of themselves. They defend with 11! Since I arrived here two years ago, I have felt that no team in Europe is asked so much. PSG is obliged to win the Champions League. The Champions is a dream. It is unfair to pose it as an obligation. Besides City, there are 10 or 12 other teams that can win it together with us ”.

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