PSG v CHELSEA: Champions League Preview

Venue: Parc des Princes

Date: Wednesday 2 April

Kick-off: 19:45 BST

After a dire performance against Crystal Palace at the weekend we could probably do without a trip to France to face PSG right now, particularly a PSG side with the likely pairing of Edinson Cavani and Zlatan Ibrahimovic running us ragged anyway. That’s just tough though, because that’s what we’re up against tonight in the UEFA Champions League quarter final first leg.  A French side unbeaten in their last 28 European matches at home, dating back to November 2006 and a side who have invested heavily in talent of late, so no pressure!


 

MANAGER’S VIEWS

Going into tonight’s first leg, PSG manager Laurent Blanc says “We’re going to stick to our philosophy.  If we start getting scared of being hit on the break we’ll play against nature and it’s not going to do us any good. We know there are going to be counter-attacks and we’ll get ready for that but we are not going to just defend.”  And despite a bit winding up from his opposite number in the press, Blanc insists “The only answer we want to give is to show a great performance.  We would like to show that Ligue 1 has some very good teams and some very good players.”

Jose Mourinho meanwhile, says of tonight’s opposition “It’s a team full of fantastic strikers and goalscorers and that is what really makes the difference in this level.  You look to the teams in the top eight at this moment, all of them good teams, good structures, with a certain philosophy, but after that you go and you see [Barcelona's Lionel] Messi, [Real Madrid's Cristiano] Ronaldo, [Borussia Dortmund's Robert] Lewandowski, [Atletico Madrid's] Diego Costa, and [PSG's] Ibrahimovic, [Edison) Cavani, and [Ezequiel] Lavezzi.  They (PSG) have lots of them. At this level it’s a very important part of a team.”

But despite questioning his own side’s character following the weekend’s defeat, Jose seems confident enough they’ll have the stomach for tonight’s game, saying “Big match, great stadium, opponents with top quality, they will be fine.  They will be in their natural habitat in that match. They can do a good match there.”

 

SQUAD NEWS

For PSG, have just the one doubt with Van Der Wiel. Thiago Silva is likely to play, albeit impersonating the phantom of the opera in his mask after fracturing a cheekbone.  Zlatan Ibrahimovic should lead PSG alongside Edinson Cavani, although given he’s only scored a club record 40 goals in all competitions so far this season, he should be easy enough to manage.

For Chelsea, Fernando Torres is likely to terrorise the PSG defence in the absence of the injured Eto’o (hamstring).  Ashley Cole (knee) is out injured, David Luiz is doubtful, while Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah are cup-tied.

 

TEAMS

PSG (Possible line-up): Sirigu: Jallet, Alex, Silva, Maxwell; Verratti, Motta, Matuidi; Cavani, Ibrahimovic, Lavezzi.

CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Cech: Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Lampard, Ramires; Willian, Oscar, Hazard; Torres.

 

PREDICTION 

On current form, PSG have won their last nine games whilst we come into tonight’s game off the back of a woeful defeat away to Crystal Palace. PSG have also had an extra day’s rest without needing to travel either. Oh and if that doesn’t stack the odds against us quite enough, tonight’s opposition haven’t lost at home in Europe for the past 28 games. Doesn’t bode well does it?

One Response to “PSG v CHELSEA: Champions League Preview”

  1. chelsea will win the psg