• News

Fabregas sends Ligue 1 title warning to Messi & PSG

Cesc Fabregas, Lionel Messi
Getty Images

The Monaco midfielder has warned his former Barcelona teammate to not expect an easy ride in Ligue 1 with PSG.

Cesc Fabregas believes Lionel Messi cannot expect Ligue 1 title success following his move to Paris Saint-Germain.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner joined PSG on a free transfer this week after unsuccessful contract talks forced him to end a 21-year stay at FC Barcelona.

Expectation will be high over in the French capital as Messi partners Neymar and Kylian Mbappe in the attack. The other summer arrivals of Sergio Ramos, Achraf Hakimi, Georginio Wijnaldum, and Gianluigi Donnarumma make PSG seem only more formidable both in France and Europe.

But Fabregas, who has played in the French league since January 2019, doesn’t believe the title battle is already a forgone conclusion.

“When PSG don’t win the league everyone sees it as a disaster because they spend a lot of money,” the AS Monaco midfielder told The Guardian.

“Everyone takes it that this is a one-team league, but in the last five years they’ve won three because Lille and Monaco have also won the title and put the brakes on their winning streak.

“It is a competitive league. It is not as easy as people think. It’s very aggressive, very intensive, very fast with strong players who defend very well.”

PSG’s target is Champions League success

Fabregas, who played alongside Messi at Barcelona between 2011 and 2014, believes his former teammate’s arrival makes winning a first Champions League title even more important for PSG.

Last season’s Ligue 1 runners-up lost the 2020 Champions League final to Bayern Munich and reached the semi-finals in the previous campaign.

“I’m sure as a coach [Mauricio] Pochettino prefers to have a fantastic squad with a lot of pressure on himself knowing he needs to win than the other way around,” Fabregas continued. “They must have pressure when they create a super team like that. It’s obvious they want to win the Champions League.

“They’ve been trying to catch it for a very long time and it seems like this is the last push – like, there is nothing better than Lionel Messi, there is no better defender than Ramos, [Georginio] Wijnaldum is one of the best midfielders at the moment, [Achraf] Hakimi is one of the best right-backs in Europe.

‘It feels like they are doing the little extra final push to see where it takes them. We will see.”