defense, a big headache ahead for Mauricio Pochettino


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As part of the 22nd day of Ligue 1, Paris Saint-Germain largely outclassed Stade de Reims (4-0). A meeting marked by the first tenure of the season at the Parc des Princes by Sergio Ramos (35). Solid in duels, authoritarian and above all a scorer (2-0, 62nd), the Spaniard showed that his physical glitches were behind him and that he was finally ready to regain his best level.

Spared until then with the long absence of the former captain of Real Madrid, Mauricio Pochettino now has a hell of a job ahead of him with his central defenders. While many observers are calling for a three-man defense with Marquinhos, Ramos and Kimpembe, the Argentinian has remained in a four-man defense against Reims. He wants to put the quadruple winner of the Champions League in the best possible conditions before seeing further. Pochettino first dwelt on the overall performance of the Spaniard at the microphone of Premium Video : “I think it’s important for him to play 90 minutes, in addition with a goal, he validates all that. He was fine until the end, we asked him and he told us he was fine. And we still have time to work on our physical form. What is needed is that all players are available. Some will go to the selection and we hope that Sergio or Kimpembe will be fine. It will be management.»

“We have three world-class international central defenders”

Except that the Parisian coach knows it, Ramos was not recruited to play supporting roles and he will have to carefully manage the downgrading of Presnel Kimpembe in the hierarchy if he installs the 2010 world champion alongside Marquinhos in a four-man defense. For the moment, the question does not arise for the Argentinian who must juggle the states of form of each other or the absences. « We have three world-class international centre-backs. We won’t have Marquinhos for the match against Nice. It is important to have this rotation to be able to use all the players. It also helps to protect Kimpembe who plays a lot“, he confided in a press conference.

For the moment, Pochettino is kicking in touch concerning the extreme competition at the position of central defender. But three weeks before the clash against Real Madrid in the knockout stages of the Champions League, the PSG coach no longer really has time to wait. Except that the calendar will make it easier for him since captain Marquinhos will miss the reception of Nice in the Coupe de France (Monday 31, 8th final). The opportunity for the former Tottenham coach to test and refine the association between Sergio Ramos and Presnel Kimpembe. While waiting for the reunion with his former team, the Spaniard has the possibility of regaining all his physical abilities and thus instilling a little more doubt in the head of his coach. He could then try a shot at the Parc des Princes on February 15…


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