Jamie Carragher has revealed Lionel Messi called him a ‘donkey’ after he suggested the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner was not a smart signing for Paris Saint-Germain earlier this season.
The Argentine apparently didn’t take kindly to the opinion and wasted no time in letting the Sky Sports pundit know his feelings.
‘It was on Monday Night Football and I got a private message on Instagram,’ Carragher said on Friday Night Football after Watford’s defeat by Norwich at Vicarage Road.
‘From the man [Messi] himself. I will not be showing private messages but he basically called me a donkey.’
As Carragher’s co-pundit Gary Neville and presenter Dave Jones could barely contain their laughter, the former Liverpool defender continued:
‘He [Messi] watches Monday Night Football so hopefully he’s watching Friday Night Football as well because Lionel, I absolutely love you
‘Greatest player of all time and compared to you I was a donkey. You know, I accept that, but you’re not getting in this team.
‘You haven’t played well enough, even if you did win the Copa America in the summer. It’s not enough to leave my man Mo Salah out the team.’
The former Barcelona legend may get in touch via private messages with the Sky Sport pundit soon enough, after the latter omitted him from his best XI for 2021.
Asked by Jones to pick their own EA Sports FIFA Team of the Year for 2021, Carragher and Neville omitted both Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
‘No, no Messi [in my team],’ the 2005 Champions League winner said.
‘I mean we had that debate at the start of the season, Ronaldo or Messi. I was the Messi man, he [Neville] was Ronaldo but there’s no place in either team for them.’
In July last year, Messi won the Copa America with Argentina – the Albiceleste’s first major trophy in 28 years – just a month before signing for PSG as free agent when it became apparent Barcelona’s financial woes meant they could not afford to keep him.
The 34-year-old won a record seventh Ballon d’Or last month, finishing ahead of Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski and Chelsea midfielder Jorginho.
Messi has scored just once in 11 league games for PSG, but has found the net five times in five Champions League appearances so far.