Marquinhos says PSG must find focus for Dortmund clash

By Sports Desk February 15, 2020

Marquinhos warned Paris Saint-Germain's attitude must be spot-on at Borussia Dortmund after they stumbled to a 4-4 draw against Amiens on Saturday.

A shabby performance from the Ligue 1 leaders was not the way in which Thomas Tuchel's side wanted to prepare for Tuesday's Champions League last-16 match in Germany.

There seems no prospect of PSG losing their grip on top spot domestically; however, their burning ambition is to succeed in Europe.

And a repeat of the display at Amiens would almost certainly be punished ruthlessly by Dortmund, who have the likes of Erling Haaland and Jadon Sancho in their ranks.

Defender Marquinhos came off the bench at Amiens where PSG trailed 3-1 and turned the game around to lead 4-3, before shipping a late equaliser to a team who have not won in the league since November.

Brazil international Marquinhos, fit again after a hamstring injury, said: "We saw that if we aren't focused at the start of a game, we can concede goals and that could cost us dearly in the end.

"We need to keep in mind the team's good reaction, because it was important to get back on level terms. It shows you have to keep your concentration right to the end, because if you just drop off for just a second, you concede a goal at the end of the game."

Marquinhos told PSG's website: "It was important for me to play again, to get back into things ahead of the important game coming up. I'm very happy to have managed that before the big match ahead of us.

"We now have to turn to Dortmund, we have to think about playing well, and that we're all 100 per cent there, even if there have been some difficult situations before that game. We need to have a good attitude to put in a good performance."

Related items

  • Coronavirus: Philadelphia Union player tests positive for COVID-19 Coronavirus: Philadelphia Union player tests positive for COVID-19

    A Philadelphia Union player has tested positive for coronavirus, the MLS club announced on Wednesday.

    The unnamed player experienced mild symptoms and is feeling fine.

    The MLS season was suspended last month due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to more than 47,200 deaths worldwide.

    "Philadelphia Union today announced that a Union player has tested positive for the novel coronavirus [COVID-19]," the team said in a statement.

    "The Union medical staff has been working directly with Crozer-Keystone Health System medical officials to treat the player who experienced mild symptoms and is feeling well and in good spirits.

    "The player is observing appropriate isolation protocols. No other cases or symptoms within Philadelphia Union soccer operations have been identified at this time.

    "No Philadelphia Union players or technical staff have trained or been at the Power Training Complex facility or Subaru Park since Thursday, March 12.

    "Based upon guidance from Crozer-Keystone Health System medical officials, infectious disease specialists and Major League Soccer health officials, this case does not present a risk to our fans, our most recent opponent, LAFC, or any of the other Union players, staff, or personnel and Union players and personnel do not need to be tested as the team is outside of the 14-day window where anyone with team related interactions with the player would have reported symptoms."

    Philadelphia were winless through two games when the MLS season was stopped, collecting one point.

  • Coronavirus: It sticks in the throat - MPs point finger at footballers over salaries Coronavirus: It sticks in the throat - MPs point finger at footballers over salaries

    Premier League footballers have been accused of living in a "moral vacuum" and urged to reduce their huge salaries by two prominent politicians amid the coronavirus crisis.

    Tottenham, Newcastle United and Norwich City are among the clubs to have used the UK Government's furlough scheme for non-playing staff.

    That job retention initiative enables employees to be paid 80 per cent of their wages - up to a maximum of £2,500 per month - by the Government while on temporary leave.

    Julian Knight, the chair of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee, says the scheme was not brought in to assist top-flight clubs while players remain on massive wages.

    "It sticks in the throat," said Knight. "This exposes the crazy economics in English football and the moral vacuum at its centre."

    He added: "This isn't what it was designed for. It's not designed to effectively allow them to continue to pay people hundreds of thousands of pounds, while at the same time furloughing staff on hundreds of pounds.

    "I don't know whether or not the Treasury can legally turn down these applications.

    "But at the same time I think football needs to have a good, long, hard look at itself and see whether or not morally this is really right, and whether or not actually what they need to do is come to an arrangement with some of their stars so they can continue to pay their [non-playing] staff 100 per cent of their wages rather than furloughing them on 80 per cent."

    Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, echoed those sentiments.

    He told BBC Radio 5 Live: "My view is always that those who are the least well-off should get the most help.

    "Highly paid football players are people who can carry the greatest burden and they should be the first ones to, with respect, sacrifice their salary, rather than the person selling the programme or the person who does catering or the person who probably doesn't get anywhere near the salary some of the Premier League footballers get.

    "It should be those with the broadest shoulders who go first because they can carry the greatest burden and have probably got savings, rather than those who work in catering or hospitality who have probably got no savings and live week by week and who probably won't get the [furlough] benefits for five weeks."

  • UEFA postpones June internationals UEFA postpones June internationals

    UEFA has postponed all national team matches scheduled to be played under its auspices in June, including the play-offs for the delayed Euro 2020 finals.

    European football's governing body held a video conference on Wednesday with representatives from all 55 member associations.

    Those involved considered recommendations made by the working groups UEFA set up last month to address the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    After that meeting on March 17, it was confirmed Euro 2020 would be moved to June and July of next year, although play-off games were still slated to take place during the international break at the scheduled end of the 2019-20 season.

    However, all UEFA matches are now postponed until further notice, while deadlines relating to the 2020-21 campaign for the organisation's club competitions are similarly on hold, with the prospect of football's shutdown going beyond the June 30 date where player contracts typically expire alluded to as a potential complication.

    "The deadlines related to all 2020-21 UEFA club competitions are postponed until further notice, in particular as regards the admission process and the registration of players," a press release read. “UEFA will set new deadlines in due course."

    At the initial meeting, UEFA made a commitment to try and complete all European and domestic club competitions by the end of June – a prospect that appears increasingly fanciful as leagues across the continent remain suspended with little sign of a resumption.

    UEFA has also stated it will relax Financial Fair Play and club licensing measures related to its 2020-21 competitions as clubs deal with unprecedented times.

    "The Executive Committee reiterated its full commitment to club licensing and Financial Fair Play and agreed that the current exceptional circumstances necessitate some specific interventions to facilitate the work of member associations and clubs," the statement read.

    "It supports the proposal to give member associations more time to complete the club licensing process, until the admission process for next season’s UEFA club competitions has been redefined.

    "As a result of the increasing uncertainty generated by the ongoing extraordinary events, the executive committee also decided to suspend the club licensing provisions that relate to the preparation and assessment of clubs' future financial information. This decision applies exclusively for participation in the 2020-21 UEFA club competitions."

    Additionally, UEFA cancelled its European Under-17 Championship and European Women's Under-19 Championship, scheduled for May and July respectively.

    The corresponding European Under-19 Championship and European Women's Under-17 Championship are postponed with the aim of rearranging, given they double up as qualifying competitions for FIFA's U-20 World Cup and U-17 Women's World Cup.

    Next month's UEFA Futsal Championship League finals have also been postponed until further notice.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.