The 2023-24 season is the first campaign in which Paris Saint-Germain doesn’t have Neymar Jr. and Lionel Messi. Despite some rollercoaster moments, the capital club is atop Ligue 1 and has advanced to the UEFA Champions League Round of 16.
Messi left PSG last summer after his contract with the French giants expired. The 2022 FIFA World Cup winner left Europe altogether to join Inter Miami. As for Neymar, PSG sold him to Al-Hilal so the Brazilian could continue his career in Saudi Arabia.
PSG is in Year 1 of this rebuild, and club president Nasser Al-Khelaïfi recently spoke with Le Parisien. One of the questions the French media outlet asked was about Messi and Neymar.
“I am very grateful to all the players who played for PSG,” Al-Khelaïfi told the French media outlet. “They all had good times and bad times. A team is not made of a single individual, but 11 or even 22. If we want to blame these players (Neymar and Messi), we must also blame me. I am responsible.
“Everyone gave their best, and that’s very important. But it is also important that the players are grateful to the club after their departure, whether they have had good or bad experiences, moments of happiness or disappointment.”
Nasser Al-Khelaïfi on Neymar and Leo Messi: “I am very grateful to all the players who played for PSG. They all had good times and bad times. A team is not made of a single individual, but of 11, even 22. If we want to blame these players (Neymar and Messi), we must also blame… pic.twitter.com/6OJR0SVQ30
— PSG Report (@PSG_Report) January 9, 2024
If PSG can advance in the Champions League, then moving on from the two players will be a success. During the two seasons, the Parisians had both stars; they couldn’t advance past the Round of 16.