Lionel Messi has said he wants to “keep winning titles” as he gave his first news conference as a Paris Saint-Germain player, saying he was “excited” to have signed for the French club.
He thanked Parisians for the reception he received since arriving in the French capital and assured PSG fans while it had been an “emotional” week saying goodbye to Barcelona – the club where he had begun and expected to end his career – he was looking forward to starting a “new life” in Paris.
The 34-year-old said: “I repeat that I’m happy to be here and I’m impatient to play, I still want to win and play as I did at the first moment of my career and with this club, the staff, I think this club is really ready to fight for all the trophies.
Paris St Germain’s president Nasser al Khelaifi said it was an ‘amazing and historic day’ for the club
“I want to keep winning titles and this is why I’ve come here to this club and I really want to make that happen.
“I’m sure I’m going to enjoy my time here and I’d like to thank PSG again for having me here.”
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner arrived in Paris on Tuesday afternoon to seal his move to the French club on a two-year deal – with an option for a third – worth £25m per year after tax, plus bonuses.
He had been with the Spanish giants for his whole career, coming through the ranks at the esteemed La Masia youth academy, but parted ways with the club after contract talks fell through due to “financial and structural obstacles”.
The French club posted a twitter video teasing his arrival, accompanied by the words “New diamond in Paris”, with the news conference scheduled for Wednesday morning.
Messi joins PSG after leaving Barcelona
Nasser al Khelaifi, the president and chief executive of Paris St Germain, said it was an “amazing and historic day for the club and the football world” as he presented the new signing.
“Everybody knows Leo… he makes football magic, beautiful, and he is a winner,” he said.
“It will be exciting for our supporters and fans worldwide.
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“We have big ambitions and we are very proud where we are today.”
He added: “This is just the start – the hard work will start now.
“We have someone next to me who has won a lot of trophies… and I am sure he will bring us a lot of trophies with his teammates.”
Messi bids farewell to Barcelona
Messi’s arrival at the club adds one of the best players of his generation to an already formidable PSG attack that includes Brazil’s Neymar and French World Cup winner Kylian Mbappé.
The latest addition said he would be playing with some of the best players in the world.
“That’s why I am here. It’s an ambitious club,” Messi told the news conference.
“You can see they’re ready to fight for everything.
“My dream is to win another Champions League, and I think this is the ideal place to be to do that.”
He conceded he did not know when he would be able to make his debut given he has not played since winning the Copa America with Argentina last month.
“I’m coming back from holiday, I’ve been a month off the pitch,” he said.
“I need a bit of a pre-season and get myself going. Hopefully debuting can be soon but I can’t give you a date. It’s up to the coaches.”