The start of the season is already tomorrow for PSG, which will face Lille for the Champions Trophy in six days, on August 1 in Tel Aviv.
A first important meeting that Mauricio Pochettino and his gang will tackle without many internationals and with disparate states of form.
The Parisian coach has been working with a very rejuvenated group since the resumption.
For its fourth preparation match, after two victories (Le Mans, Augsbourg) and a draw (Chambly), PSG left with a narrow victory (1-0) from Orléans (National) this Saturday, with the kick off. sending seven players aged 20 or under (Alloh, Bitshiabu, Bitumazala, Ahamada, Dina Ebimbe, Simons, Kalimuendo) supported by Draxler, Kehrer, Letellier and Icardi. The Argentinian striker had managed to score against Le Mans and then Chambly, but this time he did not give himself any clear opportunity in the first 45 minutes. "You cannot face Lille with this team", assures Eric Rabésandratana. The former Parisian defender noticed that the face of PSG was not quite the same when they returned from the locker room, when several executives came into play, like the rookie Achraf Hakimi, author of the unique Parisian goal on Saturday,the first in its new colors.
"Too many defensive uncertainties" ... and still without Ramos
The team that will start against Lille next Sunday should look more like the one that attacked the second half in Orleans, with Navas in goal, Diallo and Kurzawa in defense, Gueye and Herrera certainly in the middle.
There is a real doubt, however, for Sergio Ramos who could once again ignore this Tuesday in Faro (Portugal) against Sevilla FC.
The return to competition of the former Real player would however not be too much to solidify the Parisian defense which was not very reassuring with the Kehrer-Bitshiabu pair in the first half in Orleans. The two defenders were often taken by the movements of the attackers. "I'm not worried, but there are too many defensive uncertainties," Rabésandratana replies. In the first period, the Orleans attackers passed two or three times face to face, it is not possible. Kehrer has shortcomings, we know that. Against Augsburg he was moved by a guy who jumps behind his back ... and it's not a Champions League match against Bayern! These are not signs of fatigue but of weakness. Today we don't have the real defense, the only certainty you have is Hakimi.He has great potential. "
Hakimi already marks ... spirits, Navas too
The right-back recruited for more than 60 million euros at Inter Milan did not take long to find his marks.
Already decisive passer for the young Ismaël Gharbi against Le Mans (4-0), Achraf Hakimi again showed very good things when he came into play on Saturday, he made his team win.
His speed, his percussion and his ability to serve his partners in the box will be valuable assets for PSG this season.
The first resumption matches also allowed Keylor Navas to show that he is on the right track.
The Costa Rican goalkeeper was decisive against both Augsburg and Orleans.
He has sent very positive signals as fierce competition looms with the arrival of Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.
"The arrival of Donnarumma installs additional pressure but I'm not sure Navas has the pressure so far, Rabésandratana analyzes.
He won three Champions League, Donnarumma has yet to play it.
It doesn't mean that he doesn't have any qualities, not at all, but I am convinced that he will learn from Navas.
For me Navas goes first today.
The good surprise Xavi Simons
The preparation matches will therefore also have allowed young people to stand out, with contrasting successes. "Among them, two players stand out, they are Simons and Gharbi in my opinion" adds Rabésandratana. The last city has achieved very good things in the first two meetings against Le Mans then Chambly. He returned to the ranks a bit in the next two games when Simons confirmed that he had really stepped up to the plate last season. “Simons provokes, does things, he has real qualities” as a playmaker or runner. He could be an alternative in midfield this season if Pochettino decides to call on his services.
With the absence of the South Americans (Paredes, Di Maria, Neymar, Marquinhos), the late returns of Mbappé, Wijnaldum, Kimpembe and Danilo Pereira and the extended holidays of the Italian European champions Donnarumma and Verratti, Pochettino will not have a no choice but to call on young people to complete his group, if not more, in a few days against Lille. On what he shows from the start of the preparation, considered very supported by the players, Xavi Simons will inevitably be. Hoping for the return of the executives that everyone is looking forward to.