Lionel Messi scored in his first game after winning the World Cup without Kylian Mbappe. Angers lost against PSG.

Following Argentina’s victory at the FIFA 2022 World Cup, Lionel Messi scored for Paris Saint-Germain as they defeated Angers SCO 2-0 on Wednesday in Ligue 1. Le Championnat top team defeated bottom team with to goals from Messi and Hugo Ekitike, although the match at Parc des Princes was far from spectacular as the home team struggled to prevail.

Despite starting with Messi and Neymar, Ekitike’s goal after only five minutes appeared to be the end of the scoring until VAR stepped in. Both of Nordi Mukiele’s assists went to Messi, who finished a nice passing move with 18 minutes remaining in the game to give him credit for his second.

Everyone is aware of Leo’s potential, according to Fabian Ruiz after the game. “We are all thrilled for him that he scored. He deserves to be a world champion, so we are also thrilled about that. We must now utilize him to the fullest. It’s a pleasure to play with him every day and get to know him more on the field. I believe that the entire team and the supporters are delighted for him.”

Christophe Galtier had reason to be concerned before to the South American’s decisive goal because Abdallah Sima had let a golden opportunity for Angers slip away at the 1-0 mark and PSG had struggled to muster much offense for the majority of the game. Achraf Hakimi was suspended, while Marco Verratti was dealing with an ailment. Kylian Mbappe was not there as he returned to training after a well-earned break.

These three absences, along with a few largely uninteresting performances, have added to the growing worry in the capital that Les Parisiens are performing far below expectations just one month before the return of the UEFA Champions League. Messi himself was silent until he scored, while Neymar in particular was a ghostly figure who only provided momentary reminders that he was even on the pitch.

The game-winning magic ultimately came from the Argentine, who finished past a tough Paul Bernardoni and defeated the feisty SCO team. Messi received the loudest cheer of the night because there was no celebration for the returning winner in the capital of the defeated World Cup finalists’ country after a VAR check for offside turned out to be false.

Leo has worked with us for a good number of sessions and has recovered nicely, according to head coach Galtier. “He has a significant aim for us and is in excellent physical shape. We require ambitions like that from our players with his profile. We talked during intermission and periodically throughout the game to see how he was doing. It was crucial for both him and the squad that Leo returned to the field right away.”

With the exception of Ekitike’s goal, the home team had actually struggled at times as the bottom-place team in Ligue 1 attempted to pull off an unlikely victory. It was not to be, but if PSG and Messi are to be ready to face Bayern Munich, they must advance in the coming weeks. The champions do not yet seem to have adequately awoken from their slumber following the league loss to RC Lens. The troops under Galtier’s command will have a much greater challenge on Sunday away at Stade Rennais.