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Pochettino gives Messi update as star joins 3 PSG teammates with COVID-19

Lionel Messi
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The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner was one of the four positive confirmed cases for the Ligue 1 side.

Paris Saint-Germain manager Mauricio Pochettino has said he isn’t sure when Lionel Messi will return to France, let alone be available to play again.

In a statement on Sunday, PSG announced that Messi had tested positive for coronavirus. The Argentine was one of four players to return a positive result after left-back Juan Bernat, goalkeeper Sergio Rico, and right-back Nathan Bitumazala.

All four players are in isolation, although Messi is still in Argentina. The forward traveled to his hometown, Rosario, with his family last month for the winter break.

Therefore, with PSG resuming their Ligue 1 campaign at Lyon this coming Sunday on January 9, he is naturally a doubt for the clash.

What did Pochettino say?

“Messi has been in regular contact with our medical team, and when he has a negative test, he will travel to France, but we don’t know any more than that. I don’t know if he will be involved against Lyon,” said Pochettino in a press conference at the weekend.

“Until he gets a negative test in Argentina, he will not be able to travel to France. So it is all down to the test in terms of when he can travel. … We will assess when he is ready to play.”

PSG will play their first match of 2022 on Monday night away to French four-tier side Vannes in the Coupe de France.

The Ligue 1 leaders have also confirmed that Neymar is around three weeks away from returning to training.

The former Barcelona forward is recovering from an ankle injury in his native Brazil alongside PSG medical and performance staff.