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Lionel Messi travelled to Saudi Arabia hours after shock PSG defeat

Lionel Messi travelled to Saudi Arabia hours after shock PSG defeat

Lionel Messi jetted out to Saudi Arabia after PSG were beaten 3-1 at home by Lorient.

Lionel Messi travelled to Saudi Arabia with his family just hours after PSG suffered a shock home defeat to Lorient.

Despite Kylian Mbappe scoring an utterly bizarre goal, Christophe Galtier's side were beaten 3-1 at the Parc des Princes - with Enzo Le Fee, Darwin Yongwa, Bamba Dieng all on the scoresheet in a game where Achraf Hakimi saw red.

It was a sixth defeat of the Ligue One campaign for PSG, who remain five points clear at the top of the table.

They will look to get back on track against Troyes on Sunday, but talisman Messi will have quite the turnaround.

Messi played the full 90 minutes of the Lorient loss before jetting out to the Middle East, where he is poised to spend a "few days" according to Le Parisien.

The seven-time Ballon d'Or winner was snapped at the airport in Riyadh, where his long-time rival Cristiano Ronaldo is based as part of his lucrative contract with Al Nassr.

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Messi visited the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia one year ago, touring Jeddah and experiencing the Red Sea. He then returned for PSG's friendly clash with the Riyadh XI captained by Ronaldo in January.

Image: Alamy
Image: Alamy

This will be his third trip to the country and is a contractually obligated one because of Messi's role as a Saudi tourism ambassador.

“I am happy to welcome Saudi Tourism Ambassador Lionel Messi and his family on his second vacation in Saudi Arabia. We are happy to share our authentic Saudi welcome with you all,” Minister of Tourism Ahmed Al-Khateeb said.

A series of pictures showing Messi and his family in Saudi have been published, while Messi posted about the country prior to his flight out.

"Who thought Saudi Arabia has so much green?" he wrote on Instagram. I love to explore its unexpected wonders whenever I can."

According to The Athletic, Messi could well be earning $25 million per year to promote Saudi Arabia.

Featured Image Credit: Twitter & Visit Saudi

Topics: Lionel Messi, Saudi Arabia, Paris Saint-Germain