Groupism, Navas vs Donnarumma, Irregularity in Training: What’s Going on at PSG

Paris Saint-Germain are comfortably sitting on top of the Ligue 1 points table, 13 points ahead of the second-placed Nice. PSG are also in the Champions League Round of 16 but all’s not well behind the scenes. In their previous league game, PSG drew 1-1 with struggling Lorient and Georginio Wijnaldum salvaged the point in the dying moments of the game.

L’Equipe has published a report on everything that’s going on behind the scenes at PSG and it’s not pleasant. From groupism to animosity, PSG’s dressing room’s health is not up to the mark.

According to the report, the first hint of trouble at PSG was when Idrissa Gueye caught coroanvirus after refusing to be vaccinated when he was in Israel for Trophee des Champions.

Then the signings of Lionel Messi, Gianluigi Donnarumma and Sergio Ramos was not necessarily in lines with the plan of manager Mauricio Pochettino and changed the dressing room atmosphere as well.

Then Messi, Donnarumma and Ramos coming in, not necessarily in accordance with Pochettino’s plans, nor for the best of the atmosphere in the changing room.

During warm-ups also the group is divided as Neymar and Messi warm up together while Kylian Mbappe stays with Achraf Hakimi. For rondos, they are usually split in two groups – the ‘franco-phones-philes’ and the South Americans. The report said that earlier, Mbappe used to tend towards the South American but now stays more with the other group.

The report further suggested at the start of autumn, there was a sponsors’ programme where Neymar came late and with a bad attitude. The club reportedly thought about sanctioning him but held it back in fear of the news getting out.

L’Equipe report said that these incidents allow players to take liberties. One time, two South Americans arrived for training still “tired” from the previous night and decided not to train, didn’t even wait for staff approval.

Another case involved Messi when many players went out after the Ballon d’Or ceremony but the next morning, the Argentinian and Paredes did not turn up for training with “symptoms of gastroenteritis” – something that wasn’t appreciated by several others.

Pochettino and Leonardo have taken a step back after trying to take control of the dressing room.

Ramos, on the other hand, has been surprised by the fact that having meals together at the training base is not obligated on the players.

Mauro Icardi was given a three-day off without any leave request during his lovers’ tiff with Wanda and five to six days earlier, the two had a very public fight in the car park at the training base.


According to the report, at first they seemed like they had a non-aggression pact but that has changed, partly because of Mino Raiola and Zlatan Ibrahimovic commenting on behalf of the Italian, who is a Raiola client.

Recently, after a match against Nice, where Donnarumma played at the goal, Navas was speaking to the opponent’s goalkeeper Bulka (PSG’s on loan to Nice) and they spoke about wearing the same gloves (Sells). Navas pointedly commented then that the best keepers in the world wear Sells gloves.

With the divided atmosphere at the club, Mbappe’s contract extension is also stuck as he is not persuaded to stay at the club. Kimpembe is also wondering if he should move to London.

The report finished by saying, “clearly the conditions are not yet in place to form a united, federated club, ready to meet all challenges and fit to fight all battles with a common sporting goal.”

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