It will not be a pleasure for PSG, this Wednesday night at St James Park. As he prepares to challenge a Newcastle team in good form, Luis Enrique remains cautious and recalls that it will be necessary to take this appointment very seriously to chain a second success in as many games in the competition.
What do you fear in Newcastle?
LUIS ENRIQUE. It is obvious that Newcastle are the team of the fourth hat that nobody wanted to shoot, they are a team of very high level who know how to produce a very high pressing without the ball and who play very well with the ball. They have a full squad, we will play here at St James Park, in a very big atmosphere. We will have to face tomorrow. In the Champions League, all teams, including Newcastle, can reach the very high level. Nobody wanted this team in their pool because we saw last season that they were very successful. Especially here in this stadium at St James Park, where they will be pushed by the fans. I'm almost jealous of my players that they have this chance to play in such conditions, with such an atmosphere.
How do you assess the integration of Ousmane Dembélé into your collective?
He has an extraordinary talent. So far, he has been very good, he is a player capable of playing on both wings and also in the axis. At the moment, he has played on the right, he is a player who creates a lot of danger in the opponent, he is very fast. I think he will allow us to score a lot of goals, make assists. This is a good start and there is still room for improvement.
You lost in this stadium as a player in the 1997-1998 season with Barcelona. What memories do you have of this defeat?
It was a big "boom" that day. The atmosphere was really huge, they had very strong players. We lost 3-2, I remember, I scored but it was a very difficult night.
Is Kylian Mbappé at 100% of his capacity?
How to explain that Manuel Ugarte and Warren Zaïre-Emery, both spared in Clermont, are already so important in your team?
It is above all a collective work. Not all players can play every game, it's impossible. It's easy to say that Ugarte should have played but everyone has to do their job and I, as coach, decide the eleven players on the pitch. But I don't expect eleven players, it's the 23 who travel with the team (Editor's note: there are 19 in Newcastle) who must bring a plus and influence the result of the game.