Pochettino Defends Decision to Sub Messi in PSG Home Debut

Published September 20th, 2021 - 11:52 GMT
Paris Saint-Germain's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (C) leaves the pitch after chatting with Paris Saint-Germain's Argentinian head coach Mauricio Pochettino during the French L1 football match between Paris-Saint Germain (PSG) and Olympique Lyonnais at The Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris on September 19, 2021. (Photo: AFP)
Paris Saint-Germain's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (C) leaves the pitch after chatting with Paris Saint-Germain's Argentinian head coach Mauricio Pochettino during the French L1 football match between Paris-Saint Germain (PSG) and Olympique Lyonnais at The Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris on September 19, 2021. (Photo: AFP)

Paris Saint-Germain coach Mauricio Pochettino has defended his decision to sub Lionel Messi in their 2-1 win over Olympique Lyonnais on Sunday.

PSG made it six wins from six in Ligue 1 but had to wait until the dying moments of the game to seal the victory when Mauri Icardi headed home the match decider.

The 34-year-old was replaced by Achraf Hakimi in the 76th minute and did not look happy after coming off.

Pochettino reflected on his decision which he believes is not controversial.

"These are decisions that have to be made by the coach. As for his reaction, I asked him how he was, he said he was OK. That was it. That was our exchange," said the former Tottenham manager.

Messi made his Parc des Princes debut and was given a round of applause by fans following his substitution.

Lionel Messi (Photo: AFP)
Paris Saint-Germain's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi reacts during the French L1 football match between Paris-Saint Germain (PSG) and Olympique Lyonnais at The Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris on September 19, 2021. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP)

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