Lionel Messi one of quartet of PSG stars to test positive for Covid

TEAMtalk staff
Lionel Messi, Idrissa Gueye celebrate v Man City after goal in Champions League

Lionel Messi is among four Paris St Germain players who have tested positive for Covid-19 after returning from the winter break.

Juan Bernat, Sergio Rico and Nathan Bitumazala, as well as one member of staff, are also isolating after contracting the virus while on their break from Ligue 1 action.

Messi, 34, used the winter break to return to his native Argentina, where video had emerged online of him attending a concert with his wife.

Speaking in a press conference on Sunday, PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino indicated Messi was still in Argentina and would not travel until he had tested negative, meaning he was unable to put a date on his possible return to action.

PSG, who last played against Lorient on December 22 in a 1-1 draw, are due to face fourth-tier Vannes FC in a Coupe de France tie on Monday.

Neymar will also be absent for that match as he is continuing his recovery from injury in Brazil.

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PSG move for Chelsea midfielder

Meanwhile, Paris Saint-Germain have made Crystal Palace’s on-loan Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher a firm transfer target, a report has claimed.

The 21-year-old has proved one of the signings of the season since his move across London in the summer. While he would have struggled for game time at Chelsea, he has thrived at Palace.

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In fact, he has netted six goals and assisted three others in his 17 Premier League appearances so far.

As such, attention is beginning to turn towards his future when he moves back to Stamford Bridge. TEAMtalk revealed in September how Gallagher is at the front of the queue to be integrated into the Chelsea first team.

Blues boss Thomas Tuchel has insisted that the club feel “convinced” about his ability and future at the club.

Gallagher has Chelsea doubts

Meanwhile, Gallagher reportedly has his doubts over the game time he would get next season.

In any case, The Sun now claims that PSG have made the midfielder an immediate transfer target. Boss Mauricio Pochettino is a fan of Gallagher and wants a £50million swoop for him.

What’s more, in contrast to Tuchel’s comments, PSG believe Chelsea would be open to selling him.

The French giants are even looking at a potential January raid, but that looks complicated as it stands. Chelsea cannot recall Gallagher because he has gone past the agreed threshold for matches played for Palace.

Chelsea may still be able to cash in this month based on the other terms of the loan deal, but The Sun claims that a summer deal looks more straightforward.

As such, PSG will bide their time and are happy to wait until the end of the season to make their move.

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