Thierry Henry insists he is ‘not surprised’ by former team-mate Lionel Messi’s shocked reaction to being hauled off by Mauricio Pochettino as PSG struggled past Lyon
- Thierry Henry’s isn’t surprised by Lionel Messi’s reaction to being substituted
- Messi was shocked after Mauricio Pochettino took him off against Lyon
- Henry believes Messi will excel at Paris Saint-Germain but needs time to adapt
Thierry Henry has revealed that he wasn’t surprised by Lionel Messi’s reaction to being substituted during Paris Saint-Germain’s win against Lyon.
With the sides level at 1-1, Messi, who was making his home debut, was taken off by manager Mauricio Pochettino, with Achraf Hakimi replacing him.
PSG went on to win the game 2-1 but the main post-match talking point was Messi’s reaction to being withdrawn, with the Argentina star staring sharply at Pochettino and appearing to refuse a handshake from his compatriot. Messi also made a gesture with his hands apart indicating that he didn’t understand the decision.
Thierry Henry says he isn’t surprised that Lionel Messi was frustrated after being substituted
Messi briefly said something to Mauricio Pochettino but did not stop on his way to the bench
Henry is confident Messi will be able to excel for PSG but says that he requires time to adapt
Working as a pundit on Amazon Prime, Henry was asked whether he was surprised by Messi’s reaction.
He said: ‘No, not really. It does not surprise me.
‘Maybe he didn’t want to go out. We don’t know what they’re saying to each other. Let’s not start the controversy. He surely wanted to stay on the pitch so he could score.’
The summer signing was given a round of applause, but not a standing ovation by PSG fans
Messi made a limited impact against Lyon and has yet to score in his three appearances for PSG following his departure from Barcelona.
However, Henry, who played with Messi at the Catalan club from 2007 to 2010, is confident that his former team-mate will soon be able to make a major impact for PSG.
Henry said: ‘But it will come, it will come quietly. It takes time to adapt even for the best player in the world.’
After being taken off Messi was given a round of applause but not a standing ovation from the PSG supporters.
Pochettino explained after the game that ‘we must make decisions for the good of the team’
Following the game Pochettino explained his decision.
He said: ‘Everyone knows we have great players in the squad, we have 35 players. But we must make decisions for the good of the team. Sometimes they lead to a positive result and sometimes not.
‘These are decisions we need to take. Sometimes it pleases people, or it doesn’t. I asked him how he was, and he said he was fine.’
Lyon took the lead in the 54th minute through Lucas Paqueta but a penalty from Neymar in the 66th minute pulled PSG level.
After Messi’s departure PSG scored a very late winner as Mauro Icardi found the net in the third minute of stoppage time.
Messi will hope for a better experience when PSG return to action on Wednesday away to Metz.