Messi, Mbappe and Neymar all named in PSG squad for Reims clash

Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar have all been named in Paris Saint-Germain’s squad for their clash with Reims on Sunday.

The three men could line up for the first time together for PSG at Stade Auguste Delaune for their fourth Ligue 1 fixture of the 2021-22 campaign.

Messi is set to make his first appearance since joining the club on a free transfer, while Mbappe has returned despite mounting speculation over a potential move to Real Madrid and Neymar is back after an extended summer holiday.

Will Messi, Mbappe and Neymar start against Reims?

PSG head coach Mauricio Pochettino confirmed that Messi, Mbappe and Neymar would be in his plans for the Reims fixture in his latest press conference, but said a final decision on whether they will all start the game won’t be made until the last minute.

“They have trained well and we will analyse the situation, we have not yet named the squad,” he said. “They will certainly be part of the squad, but we do not know yet if they will play from the start.”

There is certainly room for the all-star trio to make Pochettino’s final XI as Mauro Icardi continues to sit on the sidelines due to a shoulder injury.

Angel Di Maria is the only other orthodox attacker to make the cut while Julian Draxler, Georginio Wijnaldum and Leandro Paredes are set to compete for midfield berths.

Messi’s long-awaited debut

Messi moved to PSG at the start of August on a two-year contract, having chosen to embark on the next stage of his career at Parc des Princes after seeing his 21-year career at Barcelona cut short due to the club’s ongoing financial problems.

The 34-year-old had previously been on a much-needed rest after helping Argentine win the Copa America, but has been building up his fitness behind the scenes in Paris in order to get back on the pitch as soon as possible.

Messi began full training last week and should now be in condition for PSG’s latest Ligue 1 outing, which they will be expected to win to extend their 100 per cent start to the domestic season.

Mbappe’s situation

Mbappe’s presence in Pochettino’s latest squad may come as a surprise to some given the fact he is currently embroiled in a transfer saga involving Real Madrid.

PSG sporting director Leonardo has confirmed that the World Cup winner wants to leave Parc des Princes, but the Blancos have yet to finalise a deal for the striker with their latest bid coming in at €170 million (£146m/$201m).

Pochetttino moved to play down the rumours of Mbappe’s imminent exit on Saturday, telling reporters: “He hasn’t told me anything about wanting to leave PSG. Kylian has prepared himself well for tomorrow’s game. The position of our president and our sporting director is very clear on Mbappe’s situation at PSG.”

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