Messi Might Want Him Gone, Says Saudi Defender Who Provoked Him During WC

During Saudi Arabia’s stunning 2-1 group stage triumph over the ultimate champions of the world in Qatar in November, Al-Bulayhi seemed to be inciting the Argentina captain. 

A World Cup encounter last year led to a disagreement between Lionel Messi and Saudi Arabia’s Ali Al-Bulayhi, who jokingly quipped that he is worried the Argentine striker will ask for his departure if he joins the Saudi club.

Rumours linking Messi and Al-Hilal 

Although his father claimed the Paris St. Germain front has not “signed or agreed” to a deal, a source close to Messi informed Reuters that the striker was presented with an official proposal to join Al-Hilal for the upcoming campaign.

Statement from Al-Bulayhi 

“I do not know what will happen, and I am afraid that he (Messi) says, ‘I do not want (player) number five’. I do not know if Messi will come or not, but if he comes, may God protect me,” Al-Bulayhi told SBC.

“If he comes, God willing, I will not attend the first two days until I monitor the situation from afar so that he may forget me,” the 33-year-old defender added.

Incident at the World Cup and facing Messi

Al-Bulayhi acknowledged that he spoke to Messi in Arabic at the World Cup and mocked him by telling him that even if the game went on for a very long period, he would still be unable to defeat the Saudis. Having faced Uruguay’s deadly striking tandem of Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez at the 2018 World Cup, the Saudi defender insisted that he was unafraid to confront Messi.

“After (the) Uruguay match, I will not ever be afraid even if I face three Messis. Messi is a legend, and I do not want to talk about him, as he may come. He is a legend, but in the end, we are 11 against 11,” he said.


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