La tete d’affiche of round 6 in Ligue1.
Only by looking at PSG’s result in Champions League (4-1 vs Olympiakos) one would get the impression that current French champions are the new Barca, Real or Manchester.
But the truth couldn’t be further away. PSG was under constant domination and besides being good at set pieces, namely corners, they haven’t shown anything else. Oh I forgot, please excuse me, they’ve also shown fragility in the defense…
It is unclear yet if central defender Alex will return from injury for the game vs Monaco. If he won’t PSG will once again use young Marquinhos as a central defender. Forwards can easily push Marquinhos around, both literally (small in volume) and metaphorically (lacks intuition) as Olympiakos forward did when getting the ball through his legs before scoring.
Looks like coach Blanc started preferring Van der Wiel to Jallet, but if you ask me it’s not exactly the best of choices. It is true that Jallet is much more offensive and PSG have enough talent upfront, but in the same time he’s got iron lungs and never gets tired and always runs back in the defense. Van der Wiel is more defensive, never really leaves his post, but also less experienced and easy to bypass with a simple dribble.
On the other side there’s Maxwell who’s got Jallet’s profile only that he’s lazier and forgets to return back after adventuring upfront.
The defense is by far PSG’s biggest weakness in this moment, especially if Alex will once again miss through injury.
Upfront Ibrahimovic can’t find himself, he’s always got something else on his mind (maybe marital issues as the rumor has it his wife can be a bitch sometimes…), Cavani proves to be nothing more than money down the drain (no biggie here as the Al Thani family, Qatar rulers, can afford it), Lavezzi is only seen when delivering corners and so on and so forth.
It breaks my heart to say it, mainly because as a Ligue1 analyst it would be in my best interest if PSG would be a world class team, but PSG are nothing more than a superficial structure built thanks to dictators (check human rights in Qatar) with access to unlimited resources and involving mercenaries (those who care only for their self interest, egoists like Ibrahimovic or Cavani)
On the other hand we have Monaco, a newcomer to the rich table thanks to the funds provided by Russian oligarch Rybolovlev.
When it comes to morality Rybolovlev is not far away from Qatar’s Al Thani family. He made his fortune after the collapse of the Soviet Union, when the West (USA, UK) imposed over night privatizations in all industries (or as they called it: 24h reforms). This happened all across the former Soviet space, but the consequences are mainly seen in today’s Russia, where all oligarchs are the product of West imposed reforms.
Basically workers from all factories, with little to no knowledge on capitalism, stocks or shares, where tricked into selling their shares on pennies (vodka money) to those that had access to an education and were to become the elites / oligarchs.
Rybolovlev while being young had that access to education as he came from a family of doctors.
Now returning to Monaco (sorry for the off topic but hopefully it will make for an interesting reading), they are at the opposite end regarding the defense. Not only on paper (conceded only 2 goals in 5 games), but also on the field they have the best defense in France.
Abidal and Carvalho in the central defense are like Berlin’s wall… Young and full of energy Fabinho and Kurzawa on the sides are of tremendous help both to the defensive and the offensive phase. Not to mention the central midfield Obaddi – Kongdogbia / Toulalan (return from injury) always helpful and on alert.
With Ibrahimovic’s current state of mind and Cavani’s lack of form there’s no way for PSG to penetrate such a defense as Monaco have.
I must be honest and admit that upfront is not everything milk and honey for Monaco. Falcao is not in the best of shapes and the guys behind him have alternating performances.
Some would say that in these circumstances under could be the best choice, but I really dislike the way PSG’s defense looks and performs, and keep in mind that Falcao has enough talent to touch the ball only 3 times and also score 3 goals.
Monaco +0.75 at the price of 1.79 is both safe and valuable. The stakes however should not be high as players could be unrecognizable due to the importance (mainly because of the media) of the game.