Lionel Messi all smiles as he trains with PSG for first time

PSG snapped up Messi on a free transfer in Tuesday after Barcelona were prevented from agreeing a new contract for the Argentine legend due to a combination of perilous club finances and LaLiga’s financial fair play regulations.

Given Messi was technically a free agent after his Barca contract expired this summer, the club’s dire financial situation meant that even were Messi to have signed a new deal to play for free at Camp Nou, Barca would still have been over LaLiga’s salary cap; thus they would have been unable to register him as a new signing.

With Messi unable to stay at Barca, the club he called home for 21 years, PSG moved swiftly to offer the 34-year-old a huge salary on a two-year contract with the option of a third year in Paris.

Despite Messi’s tearful goodbye at a Camp Nou press conference on Sunday morning, he looked in fine spirits as he set foot on the training pitch for PSG for the first time on Thursday.

Messi has not been in training for a month after being on holiday following Argentina’s Copa America triumph, and was involved in individual running and physical recovery exercises and some light ball work for PSG.

The Barca legend was also pictured holding off new team-mates Marquinhos and Angel Di Maria in the afternoon sunshine.

Messi, who won 10 LaLiga and four Champions League titles with Barcelona, is not expected to feature for PSG as they face Strasbourg on Saturday after a 2-1 win at promoted Troyes in their opening league game of the season.

The Argentine attacker left Barcelona as the club’s record scorer with 672 goals, having also helped them to seven Copa del Rey titles and three Club World Cups during his 17-year career at the Catalan club.

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