All was wrong about Lionel Messi

12 Apr 2022 | 14:38 | Football

 Lionel Messi may be criticized for the poor performance of PSG, but no one can deny the ability of the Argentine superstar.

Lionel Messi in PSG shirt

Lionel Messi is experiencing a difficult debut season at Paris Saint-Germain and currently, he has only scored three goals in 20 appearances in Ligue 1. However, perhaps all has gone wrong with just focusing look closely at the number of goals of the former Barcelona star.

The ability to score goals may have diminished compared to previous years, the M10 still plays an important role for PSG. That was reflected in the 6-1 win over Clermont, in which the Argentine superstar provided 3 assists without being named on the scoreboard.
Unexpected things about Lionel Messi - Football

 Messi still makes an impact on PSG’s play even though he no longer scores many goals.

In other words, although the number of goals may have been exhausted for Messi this season, he is still statistically one of the best passers in European football.

A graphical statistic demonstrating Messi’s effectiveness at the age of 34. The graph, using data from statistics site FBref, ranks players from Europe’s top 5 leagues by translational passes. up front and expected assists per 90 minutes.

For players to be ranked, they must have played a minimum of 13 complete 90-minute games this season. The chart shows that Messi is the best performer in both aspects and completely outperforms the rest.

Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold also scores high in the rankings, along with Bayern Munich midfielder Joshua Kimmich and Messi’s PSG team-mate Neymar.

Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne is also among the top passers, along with Lazio’s Luis Alberto and Athletic Bilbao winger Iker Muniain.
Unexpected things about Lionel Messi - Football

 The chart shows that Messi “stands alone” in two aspects: advanced passing and expected assists per 90 minutes.

Obviously, Messi still knows how to make an impact on PSG’s play. At 34 years old, Messi needs a better system to help him make the most of this ability.

Elsewhere, although there is still at least a year left on his current contract with PSG, Messi continues to be linked with a return to Barcelona to play football.

Dani Alves even urged: “I don’t know what he thinks or wants to do. He could come back to me for a short year to do a ‘last dance’. Why not? No What better place than in Barcelona.”

Tieu Lam | 19:39 April 12, 2022

© 2021 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Athletics