Lionel Messi

Ludovic Giuly believes Lionel Messi has 'changed game' at PSG due to Kylian Mbappe

Arjun Singh Devgan
Messi has struggled to score goals for PSG this season
Messi has struggled to score goals for PSG this season / David Ramos/GettyImages

Ludovic Giuly believes former Barcelona team-mate Lionel Messi has 'changed his game' at Paris Saint-Germain to help get the best out of Kylian Mbappe.

PSG completed one of the biggest transfers in footballing history when they signed Messi on a free last summer. However, things have not gone to plan for the 34-year-old on the pitch as he has struggled to find the back of the net on a consistent basis.

Messi has netted just three goals across 22 domestic appearances this campaign, and was unable to prevent his side from getting knocked out in the last 16 of the Champions League by Real Madrid.

Some PSG fans expressed their frustrations with the club's failures in Europe by booing Messi and Neymar in a Ligue 1 game against Bordeaux.

Giuly, who spent three years at the Nou Camp between 2004 to 2007, believes criticism of his former clubmate is unfair though, with the Frenchman claiming Messi has been 'unlucky' at times.

"He changed his game because he no longer has the physicality that he did ten years ago. He adapted to Kylian who goes 2000 miles an hour and who is the best player at PSG," Giuly told Le Parisien.

"It is his intelligence to say to himself: ‘Maybe I won't score 30 goals, but if I make 15 or 20 assists, that's good too.’ Even though I know he would like to be even more decisive.

"Leo has played on his inverted side (a left-footer on the right), as a striker, as number 10, it's up to him to find the right position with the coach (Mauricio Pochettino). He didn't lose his football ability overnight. He was also unlucky this season. Kylian does his job. Messi was already a passer in Barcelona, but he is perhaps even more so here," he added.

Despite his struggles in front of goal, Messi has been excellent when it has come to the playmaking role, registering 13 assists in just 21 appearances in Ligue 1 so far.