Papu Gómez Explains Why Lionel Messi Has Struggled to Adapt to French Footbal Amid Criticism

This past week was a tough one for Lionel Messi. The French football media didn’t hold back on their criticism following his missed penalty kick chance against Real Madrid in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League Round of 16.

Despite the harsh remarks from the media in France, there are some coming to the defense of Messi. One of the latest to defend the 34-year-old is his Argentina national team teammate Papu Gómez. 

In an interview with ESPN Argentina (via Fichajes), the Sevilla forward states that leaving a city and club he’s only known for over 20 years is a tough adjustment for the Argentine. 

“He lived 20 years or more in Barcelona, and from one day to the next, he had to leave. It’s the same suffering that can happen to any player; only he never had it,” Gómez said. 

“Changing houses, having to look for a house, living in a hotel, letting the kids get used to it, another language, another climate… These are all changes that lead you to have to adapt. Sometimes it can take you more or less.”

Messi hasn’t been bad as some French media have made him out to be; however, he’s not looked like his Barcelona self. Nonetheless, Messi is in his mid 30’s and father time is undefeated, so he’s taking steps to be in a supportive role rather than being the main star. 

Tags Lionel Messi Papu Gómez
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