Pochettino 'frustrated' as Messi and Neymar miss Angers | OneFootball
Pochettino 'frustrated' as Messi and Neymar miss Angers
Ligue 1 Uber Eats Official
Paris Saint-Germain coach Mauricio Pochettino has admitted his frustration at being without his South American stars when the Ligue 1 Uber Eats leaders host Angers at the Parc des Princes on Friday evening.
PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN - ANGERS (kick-off 19:00 GMT)
Neymar netted for Brazil in their 4-1 victory over Uruguay in a match that finished in the early hours of Friday morning Paris time, in a match in which Marquinhos was an unused substitute. Lionel Messi, Angel Di Maria and Leandro Paredes all began Argentina's 1-0 victory over Peru the same night. Meanwhile, Costa Rican goalkeeper Keylor Navas was forced off at half-time of his country's 2-1 loss to the United States on Wednesday evening with a groin injury.
Pochettino: "That's the way it is"
The South American World Cup qualifiers have given PSG's Argentinean coach a massive headache as the capital club attempt to return to winning ways following their loss at Rennes going into the international window. Pochettino confessed: "It's not always easy and it's frustrating not to have everybody available for the match, but that's the way it is. We have a large squad and for all the players who will be out there on the field, it's an opportunity to be competitive and to grow."
Pochettino will also have to be careful with the demands he places on the internationals he does have available who were in action in midweek. Achraf Hakimi (Morocco), Abdou Diallo and Idrissa Gueye (Senegal), and Nuno Mendes (Portugal) are all in that situation. Kylian Mbappé and Presnel Kimpembe (France), as well as Gianluigi Donnarumma and Marco Verratti (Italy) will be fresher having had longer to recover after the UEFA Nations League finals.
Left-back Juan Bernat is closing in on a return following a year out with a knee injury, but a nagging calf problem means Sergio Ramos' first appearance in PSG colours continues to be delayed with Pochettino saying: "I have no doubt that Sergio Ramos will get back to his best level. For a footballer, his situation isn't easy. He's suffering from not being able to play, but he's strong mentally. He's got the backing of the club in order to help him get through this and we hope to see him in action soon."
Angers to beat PSG for first time since 1975?
Angers have not beaten PSG in Ligue 1 since January 1975, a run stretching 21 matches, but know the absences of so many big players give them a chance. Angers coach Gérald Baticle commented: "We'll need to play a great game, our goalkeeper will need to play well and our forwards will need to convert their chances. We need to perform well as a team. This is our Champions League match."
One-club man Vincent Manceau is set to play his 370th game for Angers, putting him third on the club's all-time list behind Wladislaw Kowalski (372) and Pierre Bourdel (477). Baticle commented: "We mustn't play down the achievement. He's etched into the club's history. He's been at the club since he started football. Because of his professionalism I hope he overtakes the two ahead of him on the list. In modern football, being a one-club man is extraordinary."
Paris Saint-Germain: Donnarumma; Dagba, Kehrer, Kimpembe, Diallo; Herrera, Danilo, Verratti; Draxler, Icardi, Mbappé
Angers: Bernardoni; Manceau, Traoré, Thomas; Cabot, Mendy, Mangani, Capelle; Fulgini; Boufal, Cho