Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema insists it is just a ‘matter of time’ before Lionel Messi hits the ground running at Paris Saint-Germain, as the Frenchman backs the forward to shine at Parc des Princes
- Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has backed Lionel Messi to shine at PSG
- Messi, 34, has netted six in 16 matches since his move to the French capital
- But the Argentinian has been out since December 22 due to injury and Covid-19
Messi, 34, joined PSG from Barcelona last summer on a two-year deal – with option for a third – worth £25million per year after tax.
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner was due to sign new five year deal to remain at Barca, but due to ‘financial and structural obstacles’, it meant Messi’s wishes could not be fulfilled.
Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has backed Lionel Messi to shine at Paris Saint-Germain
Messi, 34, has been blighted by injuries and Covid-19 since his arrival at PSG from Barcelona
Since his arrival in Paris, the Argentinian has been blighted by injuries netting just six times in 16 appearances. During the Christmas break, Messi also tested positive for COVID-19 in Argentina and was restricted to individual recovery training for most of the month.
He is expected to make the bench as PSG take on Reims on Sunday, and Los Blancos striker Benzema believes he now ready to impress.
‘You can’t criticise a player like Messi, the one who criticises him, is somebody who doesn’t understand anything about football in fact!’, Benzema said in an interview with French channel Telefoot.
Messi has missed three matches during his one-month absence, during which time PSG have extended their lead at the top of Ligue 1.
Manager Mauricio Pochettino revealed earlier this week that his star player will likely form part of the substitutes for the match.
Benzema believes it is just a matter of time before the Argentinian starts to flourish in Paris
Messi is likely to be named on the bench when PSG take on Reims on Sunday at Parc de Princes
‘Lionel trained well during the week,’ said Pochettino in his pre-match press conference. ‘We are satisfied and happy with his progress and he will be with the team tomorrow [on Sunday].
‘It’s always good news that players who have been inactive, or not participating in the team, can already be available to play with the group and help the team little by little.’