Cavani set to start for PSG against Brest in Ligue 1

By Sports Desk November 08, 2019

Edinson Cavani is in line to start Paris Saint-Germain's Ligue 1 clash with Brest on Saturday, head coach Thomas Tuchel has confirmed.

The French club's all-time leading scorer is out of contract at the end of the season and has cut a frustrated figure since returning from a hip injury last month.

He was an unused sub in the wins over Nice and Club Brugge last month and has been restricted to appearances off the bench in PSG's three most recent matches.

However, in-form striker Mauro Icardi is a fitness doubt with a foot injury sustained in Wednesday's 1-0 win against Club Brugge, opening the door for Cavani to make his first start since August 25.

"It is complicated for him because he's used to starting every game," Tuchel said at Friday's pre-match news conference. 

"For the last few weeks, it has been a big difference for him in terms of pace and speed. He has trained well and it is important he starts and regains his rhythm.

"He is disappointed not to play but accepts the decision and has kept a good state of mind."

Cavani has finished as Ligue 1 top scorer in two of the past three seasons and scored twice in as many matches prior to picking up his injury against Toulouse.

PSG boss Tuchel is hopeful that this weekend's clash will give the Uruguay international an opportunity to revive his campaign.

"I'm hoping that playing on Saturday will be a trigger for him," he said. "I do not like having Edinson on the bench, but I have made that decision. 

"He is an important player for us and I want him to start tomorrow. If he can score that would be good news for PSG."

PSG suffered a shock 2-1 defeat at Dijon last week - their third loss of the campaign - and Tuchel suggested motivation may be an issue against lesser opposition.

"We can lose, it happens, but it must only happen against better sides than us," he said. "If we are missing key players, that matters - like [Marco] Verratti against Dijon.

"We do not always perform at the same level. That doesn't mean the match isn't important.

"We have to accept that the tension is different before Champions League games, or the Marseille match, compared to when we faced Dijon.

"We have to respect the opposition and prepare ourselves in the same way. I have players who know that and are super reliable."

Related items

  • Di Maria happy at PSG, glad he didn't join Barcelona Di Maria happy at PSG, glad he didn't join Barcelona

    Angel Di Maria insisted he wanted to finish his career in Europe at Paris Saint-Germain, saying he was happy he did not leave for Barcelona in 2017.

    Di Maria, 32, was linked with a switch to Camp Nou three years ago after just two seasons at PSG and with Neymar arriving from the LaLiga giants.

    But the Argentina attacker ended up staying in Paris, and said he was happy that had been the case.

    "I was very happy in Paris, but people at the club at the time told me some things, which turned out to be lies in the end," Di Maria told L'Equipe.

    "Barca tried to get me to come. The two clubs discussed it, but PSG did not want to sell me and it ended there.

    "These lies annoyed me a lot but, in the end, not leaving was a good thing because I am very happy in Paris today."

    Di Maria, who has scored 12 goals in 37 games this season, is out of contract at PSG next year.

    The former Real Madrid and Manchester United attacker said he wanted to stay at PSG.

    “Ending my career in Europe with PSG is the only thing I want and have in mind," Di Maria said.

    He added: "As for the rest, I don't know for the moment. No discussions have been initiated and this is not my intention at this time."

  • Napoli players rally behind grieving boss Gattuso Napoli players rally behind grieving boss Gattuso

    Napoli players showed their support for Gennaro Gattuso by holding a minute's silence on Friday as the grieving head coach returned to training.

    Gattuso is mourning after it was announced on Tuesday that his sister Francesca had died at the age of 37 following an illness.

    She had worked as a secretary with Serie A club Milan, where Gattuso spent 13 years as a player and was later head coach.

    Gattuso, 42, has been in charge of Napoli for almost six months, after succeeding Carlo Ancelotti in December.

    The bond between the coach and his players, led by skipper Lorenzo Insigne, was made clear by the players' response to Gattuso at the Castel Volturno training ground on Friday.

    "The day began with a very touching moment: the team wanted to express their closeness and make Gennaro Gattuso feel all their affection with a virtual hug," Napoli's website announced.

    "Captain Insigne and the whole team observed a minute of recollection in memory of the Azzurro coach's sister before the start of training."

  • Coronavirus: Serie A to allow five substitutions Coronavirus: Serie A to allow five substitutions

    Serie A will allow teams to make five substitutions during games for the remainder of the 2019-20 campaign.

    It brings Italy's top flight into line with a temporary law amendment announced by the International Football Association Board (IFAB) last month.

    World football's pre-eminent rule-making body made the alterations as a means to ease the strain on players returning to action following the extended coronavirus hiatus.

    If a team wishes to make all five changes, they must come in no more than three match interruptions, aside from half-time.

    Serie A is set to resume on June 20, more than three months after the league was suspended due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.