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Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe Don't Have Tension After World Cup Final, PSG Coach Says

Erin WalshDecember 27, 2022

LUSAIL CITY, QATAR - DECEMBER 18: Lionel Messi of Argentina runs past Kylian Mbappe of Fran during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Final match between Argentina and France at Lusail Stadium on December 18, 2022 in Lusail City, Qatar. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
Mark Metcalfe - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images

Lionel Messi and Argentina defeated Kylian Mbappé and France in the 2022 FIFA World Cup final in Qatar earlier this month, and while some have suggested there may be a rift between the two Paris Saint-Germain teammates, Christophe Galtier says otherwise.

Galtier said, via Reuters (h/t ESPN):

"There is no reason to mix everything up in the relationship between Kylian and Leo [Messi]. Kylian has a very good attitude having lost the World Cup.

"When you lose a World Cup final, you have a reason to be very, very disappointed. He was very disappointed, but he knew how to go on and behave, and had a lot of class to congratulate Leo and that's very good for the club and for the team."

Mbappé has already returned to training with PSG following a brief rest after the World Cup. He is expected to play in Wednesday's Ligue 1 match against Strasbourg.

Messi, meanwhile, isn't expected to return to PSG until next month and has been ruled out for the club's next two matches.

"He [Messi] had to return to Argentina for the celebrations, the receptions and we decided that he was going to be off until Jan. 1," Galtier said. "And so he will come and join us, either on the 2nd or the 3rd, to be able to resume competition with us, when he will have had between 13 and 14 days of recovery."

Even if there were a rift between Mbappé and Messi, the two would need to come together alongside Neymar, if PSG is to achieve its goals this season. The club sits atop the Ligue 1 standings with a 13-2-0 record, as expected, but the ultimate goal is winning the UEFA Champions League.

The Parisians are set to face Bayern Munich in the Champions League round of 16 on Feb. 14 and March 8. Mbappé is hoping to win his first European title, and Messi is looking to add a fifth Champions League trophy.