We’ve all heard the rumors about Lionel Messi, Mauro Icardi, and the Argentina National Team. The rumor, as told by Goal, being that the FC Barcelona man and arguably the best football player in history has gone out of his way to keep Icardi from the national team due to his relationship with his wife Wanda Nara. Nara used to date Maxi Lopez, who is a friend of Messi’s, and this is supposed to be the cause of the rift between Messi and Icardi.
Still with me after all of that? Good. It only gets more ridiculous from here. Icardi now plays at Paris Saint-Germain where he is on loan from Inter Milan for the season. With compatriots Angel Di Maria and Leonardo Paredes also at PSG, L’Equipe claims Messi asked both of them to give Icardi a cold welcome to PSG. Fortunately, Icardi spoke to Canal+ after his arrival in Paris and set the record straight.
“I knew [Messi] at Barcelona years ago, I let people talk, these things we cannot avoid,” explained Icardi. “I do not believe in these stories. I was able to meet him, he is the best player in the world. I appreciate him enormously,” continued Icardi. Finally, about that supposed cold welcome…
“I was very moved by the fans,” said Icardi. “Against Strasbourg when I started to warm up, I received an incredible welcome, the whole stadium sang for me, it was spectacular. It never happened to me [before], and it touched me a lot.”
The former Inter man isn’t the only one speaking to the media and trying to put an end to the rumors. Di Maria recently spoke to ESPN Argentina and Mundo Albiceleste translated the transcript. Here’s what he had to say about the rumor that Messi is keeping the 26-year-old out of the Argentina squad:
“It’s always the same thing, it’s always the same jokes. Messi called that they ignored Icardi…incredible things which we have been accustomed to hearing,” Di Maria said. “Sometimes we think we should come out and deny it but coming out and denying it would be like giving it meaning and making it seem real, it’s useless. We know it and he knows it that ever since his arrival, we have been trying to incorporate him as quickly as possible.”
Fideo saved his best quote for when he was asked about the source of the rumors: “I don’t know,” Di Maria said. “Ask your colleagues [in the media]. The only thing that I do is just read [the rumors], and every time I read them, I laugh because it’s always the same jokes that come out.”
Icardi’s loan deal was confirmed on transfer deadline day with some in the media (Bleacher Report) questioning sporting director Leonardo at the time. The Argentina international is not without faults, but his talent as a footballer is undeniable and so far, his antics have been non-existent and he’s playing vital minutes for PSG with Kylian Mbappé and Edinson Cavani injured and Neymar Jr. missing the first couple UEFA Champions League matches this season.
For now, all appears to be calm at PSG for the first time in quite a while.
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