French star makes surprise Messi claim

Ligue 1

A French defender, who has faced Lionel Messi on several occasions over the years, has made a surprising claim about the Argentine's game. 

Following 21 years of much team and individual success with FC Barcelona, Messi has experienced a slow start to life with Paris Saint-Germain, having scored only one goal in five appearances to date for his new club.

PSG manager Mauricio Pochettino has brushed off concerns about the star's form, though, insisting that the six-time Ballon d'Or winner, Neymar and Kylian Mbappe need time together to learn each other's movements.

Ex-France international and Troyes defender Adil Rami, who knows Messi from his time in LaLiga when he played for Sevilla and Valencia, has now given his take on how Messi's game has changed over the years.

Read: Messi on PSG move after mixed start

According to Marca, the centre-back has never been on the winning side in his 12 meetings against the Albiceleste talisman, but he has surprisingly revealed that he believes it is "easier" for defenders to face Messi these days than it was a few years back.

"Granted, I never won, but there were draws and [chuckling] I got four or five shirts from him," Rami told Ligue 1's official website.

"He was too strong, back then he was always behind my back. He'd be offside and then he would move back to touch the halfway line and then go again.

"Now he's more of a passer, so it's easier for defenders as we can wait.

"I don't think he's able to do his slalom moves so much."

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