What will happen to PSG now that Lionel Messi has left the team and Kylian Mbappe’s role is about to change?

There are many issues that need to be resolved, but it all begins with assembling the ideal squad around Mbappe.

Even though Lionel Messi is now serving a two-week suspension from Paris Saint-Germain, it seems like his time there is almost up. This relationship seems doomed to failure after a hefty fine and a ban from all club amenities following an unauthorized trip to Saudi Arabia as part of a business deal. Just days before his contract expires and he might sign with another team, the Argentine international’s contract is set to expire at the end of June.

Given that PSG and Messi still have a contract extension offer on the table from the French champions, their odds of remaining together are minimal to none at this moment. The former Barcelona player will leave Parc des Princes in disgrace because, absent a turnaround of extraordinary proportions, neither party will bring it up again.

PSG supporters turned out in number to welcome the FIFA 2022 World Cup winner in style and with a display of great emotion when he arrived in the French capital. The French champions’ fans’ fervor was on full display on Wednesday in Paris as they stormed onto the club’s offices after making a quick stop outside of Neymar’s home.

Irate fans yelled Messi’s name, that of Brazilian superstar and teammate Marco Verratti, as well as the names of CEO and chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi. Messi’s personal situation is getting dangerously out of hand, and it feels like we may have seen him play in Rouge et Bleu for the last time at PSG right now.

We consider PSG’s options for the future.

Main man Mbappe

Although Messi’s internal suspension won’t prevent him from playing in any of the team’s remaining matches against Christophe Galtier, the South American may not care. PSG is working to change the club’s culture, and part of that effort has involved putting a stop to actions like those taken by Messi and Neymar in this instance. The necessity for the Ligue 1 leaders to distance themselves from as much poison as possible is absolutely crucial because they are up against a challenge to win a historic 11th Championnat title.

When playing so poorly, it is not ideal to lose a player of Messi’s talent, but the cost in terms of the negativity he is generating is becoming too high. The stage is set for Kylian Mbappe to come up as PSG’s key man for the remainder of the season as the club builds around him because Neymar is hurt and Messi is currently suspended. This time period offers him time to adjust to being the unquestioned leader for the rest of time since the summer was originally planned to be focused on adding players that are compatible with him.

No Messi for new boss

After victories over OGC Nice and RC Lens seemed to seal the deal, the title was once again in jeopardy following the 3-1 home loss to Lorient FC. Just weeks from the season’s conclusion, PSG find themselves suddenly a few bad results from potentially letting bitter rivals Olympique de Marseille in. Although Galtier will leave along with Messi, it makes little sense to make such significant changes before the championship is assured.

Instead, the knowledge that the Argentine will not be involved in the upcoming campaign should help to clarify the situation and remove one potential stumbling block when looking for a new boss. Messi by himself most likely wouldn’t have dictated potential replacements and required a star whisperer like Zinedine Zidane, but the post-Galtier PSG will undoubtedly be easier to shape tactically with one or more of Messi, Neymar, and Mbappe out of the attack, which could enable a greater pressing element and signal a stylistic change.

The summer acquisition of Milan Skriniar and the likely departure of Sergio Ramos both factor into concerns for the next season, but considering Messi’s standing and wage impact, it was perhaps most important to know his future. Taking a player of that caliber out of the picture might also make room for a younger, less seasoned tactician, such as Thiago Motta or Julian Nagelsmann, who would be more in line with PSG’s desire to emphasize French talent and youth academy promise. However, the current climate of unrest suggests that experience still has great value, so it is not surprising to hear Jose Mourinho’s name mentioned.

Messi-less PSG attack will look much different

The fact that taking Messi out alters the attacking possibilities, independent of Neymar, is maybe most significant for the French champs. Hugo Ekitike and Mbappe may be given a few chances to prove themselves alongside one another, and the target man profile is now better suited than it was when PSG stuck with their superstar trio.

Messi, Neymar, and Ekitike would all ideally depart during a full rebuild, but the Brazilian is recuperating from an injury, and the Frenchman had a subpar debut campaign. Expect that to grow in importance as a more direct approach is required and has, perhaps, been lacking since Edinson Cavani left in 2020.

If PSG is able to move both Neymar and Messi, it would offer Luis Campos the opportunity to completely reconstruct the team imaginatively, bringing in a variety of players and possibly a No. 10 profile. This may explain why Bernardo Silva has frequently been mentioned in connection with a move to Parc des Princes since the arrival of his compatriot.