Lionel Messi returns to PSG eyeing trophy clean sweep

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Lionel Messi It’s back Paris Saint Germain17 days after claiming 2022 World Cup glory, the club returned to football on Wednesday to resume its day’s work on the training ground. Argentina as He was given a guard of honor by the staff and his teammates.

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He has successfully added football’s greatest prizes to a roll of honor that includes the Copa America, the Champions League, multiple league and cup titles and even Olympic gold, so it may seem as if Messi knows no bounds to victory as he prepares himself. Back to action.

Messi — a seven-time Ballon d’Or winner on an individual level — has won 40 major honors in his career so far for club and country, but there remains one outlier who remains unclaimed, at least for now.

As unbelievable as it may sound, Messi has only played and won one major competition since turning professional nearly two decades ago: the Coupe de France.

The 35-year-old’s one appearance in the French Cup — last season’s round of 16 penalty shootout loss excellentWho lost in the final Nantes — meaning this is the only senior competition he has competed in without ultimately winning.

However, PSG are only half a dozen games away from being able to right that wrong, as Christophe Gaultier’s side begin their 2022-23 Coupe de France campaign on Friday against La Berricone de Chateauroux in the round of 64.

Whether or not Messi makes his first club appearance since the World Cup against a third-tier side at the Stade Gaston Petit, he stands just six games away from completing a remarkable clean sweep. All PSG need is to reach the final — which they have done eight times in the last 12 years — and lift the trophy for the 15th time.

As things stand, Messi has won 11 of the 12 senior competitions he has played for club and country since his professional debut in 2004. If you include Argentina’s win at the 2008 Summer Olympic Games, that would make the total 12 out of 13 — although the men’s soccer tournament is officially designated as an under-23 competition, and is therefore not included here.


Argentina

CONMEBOL Copa America (won in 2021)

Messi had to wait until the age of 34 to claim the first major international honor of his career — although he had previously won gold at the 2008 Olympics and won the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship, an U20 tournament. When Argentina lost Brazil In the 2021 Copa AmΓ©rica final, it was the talisman forward’s 34th total appearance in the competition, spanning six editions of the tournament having been defeated in the previous three finals.

Grand Final (won in 2022)

Messi and Argentina carried the momentum to their Copa America victory by beating the reigning European champions. Italy and lift the CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions trophy last summer, adding more silverware to his long and often arduous international career.

FIFA World Cup (won in 2022)

Messi played 60 games in World Cup qualifiers and 25 in World Cup finals (a record for a male player) before finally lifting the famous trophy aloft after the dramatic 2022 final between Argentina and France. Albiceleste Won on penalties last month.


La Liga (10 titles won in 2004–05, 2005–06, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2017–18 and 2018)

Messi has played 520 times in La Liga for Barcelona, ​​making more appearances in the Spanish topflight than any other competition and scoring 474 goals along the way. He won the La Liga title more times than any other time, collecting 10 winners’ medals in 17 seasons spent at Camp Nou. He made 32 appearances for Barca’s B and C teams early in his career, but these teams play in Spain’s lower leagues, not considered major competitions.

Copa del Rey (7 titles won in 2008–09, 2011–12, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18 and 2020–21)

Messi has enjoyed consistent success spainIts domestic cup competition too, scoring 56 goals in 80 appearances — including a career best in the 2014–15 final. Athletic Club. He won the trophy seven times as a BarΓ§a player, including four in a row between 2014–15 and 2017–18.

Spanish Super Cup (8 titles in 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016 and 2018)

The Spanish Super Cup usually pits the reigning La Liga champions against the winner of the Copa del Rey, Messi has won eight titles from nine appearances in the competition with Barca, scoring 14 goals in 20 games in the process.

UEFA Champions League (4 titles in 2005–06, 2008–09, 2010–11 and 2014–15)

Across 19 seasons, Messi played 161 matches in the Champions League for Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain and scored 129 goals. However, his quest to win a first European Cup for his current club will resume next month Bayern Munich In the round of 16, Messi won the Champions League four times for Barça, esp Give a tour on a win Manchester United In 2011.

UEFA Super Cup (3 titles in 2009, 2011 and 2015)

In an exhibition game that pitted the Champions League and Europa League winners against each other, Messi was a fundamental part of the team that beat Porto in the 2011 edition of Barcelona’s first UEFA Super Cup since 1997. Argentina then claimed the trophy again in both 2011 and 2015, which was Barca’s last appearance.

FIFA Club World Cup (3 titles in 2009, 2011 and 2015)

Messi played five matches, scored five goals and won the Club World Cup three times — an annual knockout mini-tournament organized by FIFA that pits the reigning champions from each of the six continental confederations against the national league champions. of the host country.


Paris Saint Germain

Ligue 1 (won in 2021–22)

After waiting a full nine months, Messi won the Ligue 1 title at the first attempt in his inaugural season at Paris Saint-Germain, playing 26 times and contributing six goals and 15 assists as he gradually found his feet in the French topflight. This season, 17 league games gone, he already has seven goals and 10 assists.

Champions Trophy (won in 2022)

Messi then collected his second club honor with PSG last July as the Ligue 1 champions beat Coupe de France winners Nantes 4-0 in Tel-Aviv.

French Cup (0 titles)

At least for now, the Coupe de France is gone for Messi. In fairness, his only appearance in the competition came back in January 2022, when a formidable PSG side were knocked out by Nice in the round of 16. The game ended goalless in regulation time and was ultimately decided by penalties. Eagles Won the shootout 6-5. Messi, for the record, scored his spot kick.

ESPN’s Statistics and Data Group contributed to this report.



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