What’s Going Wrong At PSG?5 min read
As the 2019/20 summer transfer window opens in earnest, PSG already find themselves at the forefront.
Adrien Rabiot has arrived in Turin to sign for Juventus, Dani Alves has decided he needs another challenge elsewhere, Thomas Meunier is open to going too whilst Kylian Mbappe has, apparently, made it known that he will not be staying in the French capital beyond his current contract either.
The latter nugget of information, released over the weekend, will have hit president, Nasser Al-Khelaifi, like a hammer, coming as it does in the wake of Neymar’s own decision to leave and, one suspects, return to Barcelona.
The Brazilian’s move is far from a done deal at the time of writing, but there’s little doubt that Neymar also feels that his time at Paris Saint-Germain has come to an end after two mostly underwhelming seasons.
Even with him and Mbappe in situ, the runaway French league champions haven’t come close to winning a longed-for Champions League… and don’t look likely to anytime soon.
As soon as the real business begins in the knockout rounds, PSG are conspicuous by their absence. It’s as if, collectively, there’s a mental block of some sort, because they really have been woeful in the latter stages of European competition over the last few years.
What attracted all of the big-name signings – money – is the one thing that, evidently, can’t buy them what they truly desire. A seat at football’s top table.
Certainly, Thomas Tuchel could do without such upheaval before the start of the new campaign, as he seeks to become the manager who can, finally, take the club to the promised land.
Al-Khelaifi too, has made his ire plain enough. “Players are not here to please themselves,” he told France Football.
“They will have to do more, work more. The players will have to assume their responsibilities even more than before. It must be completely different. If they don’t agree, the doors are open, ciao! I don’t want any celebrity behaviour anymore.”
Leonardo’s reappointment as PSG sporting director might go some way to alleviating what is turning into something of a crisis in Paris, given his natural authority in the position, and it’s likely he’ll enjoy a better working relationship than previous incumbent, Antero Henrique, did as a result.
However, that doesn’t mean that PSG are out of the woods yet.
The Neymar saga threatens to dominate the entire summer and into the team’s pre-season, which is no good for anyone.
And speculation will only continue where Mbappe is concerned, Real Madrid already suggesting they’ll take him this time next year.
Only time will tell if this is the beginning of the end for the ambitious project at the Parc des Princes.
Whether the foundations have been shaken so hard that total collapse in due course will become a reality, Qatari billions or otherwise.