At 35 years old, Messi continues to play at a high level. After a challenging first season at Paris Saint-Germain, the veteran has bounced back in Year 2 and showing up for Argentina at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Footballers are not supposed to keep the level they had in their prime years while they’re in their mid-30s, which is why many punts and fans last year believed that it was the beginning of the end for Messi.
However, he’s disproven that and continues to come up in vital moments this 2022-23 season for PSG and in Qatar for the Argentina national team.
During a segment on ESPN FC Saturday, Steve Nicol analyzed what makes Messi’s game age well when other talented players who are also in their mid-30s have shown their age.
“He’s got incredibly quick feet and when you get older, the timing and the strength, and everything starts going and you kind of lose that he doesn’t seem as though he’s lost that all,” Nicol said. “So to be 35 and still have such quick feet is pretty amazing.”
Meanwhile, fellow panelist Frank Leboeuf echoed what Nicol was saying as the ESPN pundit stated that Messi’s pace doesn’t appear to abandon the PSG star.
“The pace that you bring into your football and you can keep all over the ages, it’s very important,” Leboeuf said. “We see Luis Suarez out of it. Ronaldo is becoming difficult. Messi is the only one who are able to keep that pace and change it and make the game being so effective.”
Messi hopes to continue the source of Argentina’s attack when the South American nation goes up against the Netherlands with a ticket to the World Cup semifinals hanging in the balance.