Against Bayern Munich, their executioner in the final of the last Champions League in August, Paris Saint-Germain will try to take revenge, although the duel between the two now comes in the quarterfinals of the top European tournament, where they meet on Wednesday (18:45 GMT) in Munich in the first leg.
After eliminating FC Barcelona in the previous round, PSG gained momentum in its attempt to conquer the first European champion title in its history.
A rematch of the ‘comeback’ of 6-1 in 2017 was claimed against Barça at the Camp Nou. And against Bayern he wants to follow the same path.
Like the protagonist of the movie “Kill Bill”, she still has names on her list of bad memories and the German champion automatically makes one think of a 1-0 defeat in the final of the last Champions League, in Lisbon. It was the first time that PSG reached the final of the tournament.
“(The lost final) is in our heads, always,” attacker Kylian Mbappé admitted to TF1 television. “Now we are in another context, there are two parties,” he said.
– Reaction –
Since the final in Lisbon, PSG have walked with a certain irregularity. On Saturday they lost 1-0 to Lille in Ligue 1 and Mauricio Pochettino’s men gave a dubious image, which made them lose the lead in their national championship.
“We lack regularity because things change from day to day,” acknowledged Pochettino.
Expelled at the end of the game against Lille, Neymar embodies those ups and downs of PSG this season, between steps through the infirmary, moments of genius and uncontrolled anger.
Bayern is presented as a fearsome rival. He has been undefeated in the Champions League for 19 games and the ‘Rekordmeister’ is the favorite in this quarterfinal match.
– Lewandowski and Gnabry, casualties –
However, the casualties could come to help PSG, since Bayern will not be able to count on their Polish striker Robert Lewandowski, who was injured in a knee in the recent concentration with his selection.
Serge Gnabry was called out on Tuesday with a sore throat and the responsibility at the tip of the attack now appears to lie with Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting, a former Paris SG player.
Kingsley Coman and Leroy Sané would endorse him at the extremes and Thomas Müller as ‘free electron’.
The absence especially of Lewandowski, last FIFA The Best award, can be a relief for the Parisian defense.
“He is a great player for them, you can say in quotes that it is great news for us, but I do not like to be happy about the injuries of others,” said Mbappé.
Beyond the absences, Bayern are a compact block and they showed it on Saturday by beating RB Leipzig 1-0, in a very important match in the race for the title in the Bundesliga.
In the Parisian squad, the absences due to covid-19 of Marco Verrati and Alessandro Florenzi, due to the suspension of Leandro Paredes and due to injury to Mauro Icardi and Layvin Kurzawa represent a serious setback for Pochettino, as he is deprived of five victory holders 4- 1 in Barcelona in the first leg of the round of 16.
“Against Bayern we cannot make any mistakes,” said PSG’s Costa Rican goalkeeper Keylor Navas in an interview with France Football. “But I am convinced that with all our qualities we have the weapons to win,” he said.
ah-cpb / jed / smr / dr