“Borussia Dortmund has more to worry about than just fit-again Paris St Germain forward Neymar,” Says Dortmund’s boss, Lucien Favre
Paris St-Germain has exited at the first knockout round of the Champions League in the past three seasons.
This season, they progressed by topping a group containing 13-time European champions Real Madrid with five wins from six games.
Moreover, Neymar has missed the past four games with a rib injury. Nonetheless, the Brazil forward has been named in the PSG squad for the Champions League last-16 tie.
“They have so many players with great qualities. They beat Real Madrid even without Neymar.” Said Favre.
“Neymar is a great player but so is Mbappe and Di Maria.”
“I can name at least 10 players on that team with huge potential.”
“They are a dangerous team. When you lose the ball, they move very fast upfront. The key will be how we defend.”
“It’s important we’re very strong on winning the ball and then, when in possession, that we stay calm.”
Dortmund midfielder Axel Witsel agrees with his manager that PSG is far from a one-man team.
“If Neymar plays, and I am pretty sure he is going to play, then we have to take care of him.” Said the Belgium player.
“But they have so many good players. We have to be compact and we have to defend as a team and really be strong.”
Tuchel and Watzke-How will they cope?
Tuesday’s Champions League game sees the return of PSG manager Thomas Tuchel to Dortmund. The club he managed from 2015-2017 before being sacked shortly after winning the German Cup.
Relations between Tuchel and chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke became strained after Dortmund’s team bus was damaged by an explosion in April 2017.
Tuchel claimed neither he nor his players were consulted about whether they should play their Champions League quarter-final home tie against Monaco fewer than 24 hours after the incident. But Watzke denied that was the case.
“It’s not Jurgen Klopp coming back.” Said Watzke. “Thomas Tuchel is a great coach and when I see him, I will certainly greet him. And I think he will do the same.”
“We worked well together for two years and in the end, things got a bit tough. We will certainly not become great friends in life anymore. But that was three years ago.”