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“Messi’s debut will have had the pomp and sense of a ceremony of allegiance”

VS‘is probably the only time that a meeting of the fourth day of Ligue 1 will be qualified as a “historic match”, as did a news radio on Sunday, August 29 about Reims-PSG. It evoked the hundred or so accredited journalists and the thousand euros reached by certain tickets on the black market – criteria which were hardly sporty, but which express the nature of the craze.

Only time seemed to lack to erect a statue of Lionel Messi next to that of Raymond Kopa at the Auguste-Delaune stadium, before this Reims-Paris whose only real stake will have been the debut of the former Barcelona under his new colors. , and which will have had the pomp and the sense of a ceremony of allegiance to the one The team du jour described as “king” on “one” and “lord” on page 2.

Article reserved for our subscribers Read also In Reims, Lionel Messi takes his first steps with PSG in Ligue 1 in jubilation

On this Sunday evening baptized “#MessiDay” on social networks, the Apparition suffered a little, on the screen, to be caught between an intervention of the VAR and an interruption for injury. But football France, incredulous, attended it by aligning itself under the banner of the Argentinian and his club, full of an implicit gratitude for the world exposure thus provided.

PSG, curious patron of Ligue 1

Eternally complexed by our championship, we are surprised to see Messi soon in Francis-Le-Blé (Brest) or Gabriel-Montpied (Clermont-Ferrand), forgetting that he played in Pamplona or Getafe. It is thus: foreign commentators will learn to pronounce “Reims” and “Troyes”, to discover the charms of the “Farmers League”.

The time has come for the celebration of the idol, which already recalls that of which Zlatan Ibrahimovic had been the object. This hero is “humble”, human and professional. He laughs with his teammates, arrives on time for practice and says hello. Wonder is not without silliness. At least the cult of individualities, in current football, is well illustrated.

The commercial director of the Stade de Reims went so far as to want the public to chant his name, and the club has put up for sale a “collector’s” scarf in the colors of the two clubs. So many outrages against supporterism, which hates glory hunters – those who line up behind the winners and headliners.

Let’s hope all the same that the opponents will not have the sole objective of watching him play, and that they will be as combative during regulation time as at the end to ask him for his jersey or a selfie.

The event will have confirmed the vassalization of the French clubs towards this curious Parisian patron who does not give them money, but concedes to them the idea that they would enrich themselves by streaming

The event will have confirmed the vassalization of the French clubs towards this curious Parisian patron who does not give them money, but concedes to them the idea that they would enrich themselves by trickling down, and grants them the right to flutter in his light. We will do the accounts later, those of the box office receipts and, perhaps, of the international broadcasting rights.

The match, rather tasteless, and the thirty minutes of Messi, very neutral, clearly say that there was little question of football, and that his entry into play in the 66e minute had the character of a contractual obligation. So it was she who made almost the whole event, barely competed with by the extrasport soap opera of the transfer of Kylian Mbappé.

From exhibition to competition

Unperturbed, Mbappé took charge of the field by signing a double. It didn’t matter that Yunis Abdelhamid had more nice technical moves than Lionel Messi. To add to the symbols, it was Neymar who gave up his place, returning to the shadows he had wanted to leave by coming to Paris.

The easy victory of PSG, the fourth in four games, reinforces the feeling that its participation in Ligue 1 may look like an exhibition tour. To the point that the departure of Mbappé, even if it triggered arrivals, would be like a measure to rebalance the forces a little.

We would forget, once again, that a casting does not make a team and that Mauricio Pochettino will have to succeed in transforming a constellation into a formation capable, not only of not failing in the championship, but above all of crossing one last level at most. high European level.

2021 will remain the year of cognitive dissonance in football. In April, the oligarchic model of football is highlighted by the Super League fiasco, and violently disavowed. In August, we celebrate this football dominated by hyperclubs which accumulate superstars. Through Messi, this football reminds us of his power of fascination, and our weakness in front of him.