Star recruit of the summer of 2021, Paris Saint-Germain's Lionel Messi was part of the capital club's record-equalling tenth Ligue 1 Uber Eats trophy - take a look back at the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner's first campaign outside of Spain.
At 34 years old, Lionel Messi conquered his 11th championship title with Paris Saint-Germain, after the ten claimed with Barcelona in La Liga. With six goals and above all 14 assists in 26 games played in Ligue 1 Uber Eats, the Argentine shone brighter in terms of cooking up goals - he racked up 14 assists! - than in finishing them, and his understanding with Kylian Mbappé was a thing of beauty.
Lion's share for Mbappé
It was these two players who delivered the most assists for each other (11): half of Messi's offerings were for Mbappé and four of Messi's goals were teed up by the Ligue 1 Uber Eats Player of the Year. That Messi didn't score more goals himself came down to a persistent fascination with the woodwork, his hitting the frame of the goal no fewer than 11 times unmatched in 16 years!
Most times hitting the woodwork in a Ligue 1 Uber Eats season:
1. Lionel Messi (PSG, 2021/22): 11
2. Bakary Sako (ASSE, 2011/12): 10
3. Kylian Mbappé (PSG, 2021/22), Mariano (OL, 2017/18), Di Maria (PSG, 2018/19) and Juninho (OL, 2007/08): 7
Inspired in the construction phase
On the other hand, Lionel Messi was the player who delivered the most assists as a function of game time (once every 153 min), the player with the most final passes in open play (2.34 out of 90 minutes) and the player who has made the most penultimate passes leading directly to a shot during the season (45), seven of which resulted in a goal. Only Neymar (PSG) and Ludovic Blas (FCN) did better (8).
Most penultimate passes before a shot in Ligue 1 Uber Eats this season:
1. Lionel Messi (PSG): 45
2. Dimitri Payet (OM): 41
3. Kylian Mbappé (PSG) and Seko Fofana (RCL): 40
5. Mattéo Guendouzi (OM): 38
6. Jonathan Clauss (RCL) and Houssem Aouar (OL): 36
The first player in the history of the championship to bag two assist hat-tricks in the same season (vs ASSE and Clermont), Messi is also ahead of Kylian Mbappé (PSG) in terms of the number of times he has been involved in sequences in the game ending in a shot (50 against 28). Benjamin Bourigeaud (Stade Rennais) and Neymar (PSG) came in one length behind Messi.
In the best attack of the season in Ligue 1 Uber Eats (90 goals), the Argentinean striker finished in third place for goal involvement following progress with the ball at his feet (6), tied with Moses Simon (FCN) and Martin Terrier (SRFC), but behind Mbappé and Franck Honorat (SB29).
Finally, Messi's legendary ball control also allowed him to end the year with the second-highest percentage of successful dribbles in Ligue 1 Uber Eats among players with 100+ dribbles attempted (61%), behind OL's Lucas Paqueta.
Still the best