Speaking ahead of tomorrow’s Champions League clash against Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain manager Mauricio Pochettino insisted that there were no favourites in the tie.
His words transcribed in L’Équipe, the Argentine also responded to questions on a past meeting with Los Blancos, namely his win over the Spaniards with Tottenham Hotspur in 2017.
“There isn’t more pressure on one side or the other. I respect Real Madrid, it’s one of the biggest clubs in the world, which has won everything. When you win, there’s always a combination of factors which mean that a club shows its strength. For me there are no favourites. It’s a Round of 16 tie which could be a final given the players and the quality.”
“Here in Paris, we aspire to win it. It would be a dream. We don’t have Real Madrid’s history or experience but we’re not going to play the victims either. I have faith in my squad.”
“[On whether he will tactically repeat the 3-1 win with Spurs in 2017] Tottenham was a very different team to the one at PSG. We are facing a team with a midfield that have been together for five years. That time, the fact that they’ve known each other both on and off the pitch, is the most important thing. That’s when it becomes easier to express individual talents. I’ll say it again, Real Madrid are a great team, with incredible strength that brings the team to a very high level.”
“If you take that year where we beat Real, they weren’t good in the Copa del Rey, nor in La Liga, but in the Champions League they won. That mental strength was decisive. You always have to respect Real Madrid.”