Angel Di Maria has played in both the Premier League (albeit briefly) and Ligue 1, so he’s uniquely qualified to speak on the topic of which league is more competitive.
Paris Saint-Germain has dominated Ligue 1 since the Qatar Sports Investments era began in 2012, winning six of the last seven league championships and a seventh expected at the end of the season.
Despite the silverware and current 12-point lead over Olympique Lyonnais, Di Maria believes the French league is more competitive than other leagues in Europe.
Speaking to the official Ligue 1 website, via Daily Mail, Di Maria cited Liverpool FC’s lead in the Premier League as an example of why critics are wrong about the French league.
“Many feel the league is weaker than others but look at other leagues, look at England!”
“Liverpool are streets ahead, and when we build up a similar lead it’s because the league isn’t good?!”
“There are fewer star names here, but the league is really competitive.”
Those who watch Ligue 1 routinely will confirm Di Maria’s quotes. The league is full of quality—just ask all of the Premier League teams who overpay for French talent—and it’s easily one of the most physical in Europe. Just ask Neymar Jr who was fouled nine times against Montpellier HSC last Saturday.
Only AS Monaco has been able to topple the PSG dynasty in recent years (2017) but several of the top teams are steadily growing stronger according to Di Maria.
“It [the league] has changed a lot. I think that it’s getting more competitive with every passing year.”
“Every season, teams are stronger, it gets harder to win. My two first campaigns here…I’m not saying that they were easy but the opposition was not as strong as it is now.”
“Little by little, the league has become more competitive, harder to win. Teams have worked out how to play against us.”
“Coaches have formulated plans to play PSG, Marseille, Olympique Lyonnais. It’s important and I think that it is helping the league grow.”
So far this season, Di Maria is having one of his best years as a professional. Through 30 appearances for PSG this season, the 31-year-old has scored 11 goals and recorded 14 assists.
Up next for PSG and Di Maria, is an away match at FC Nantes, one of the best defensive teams in Ligue 1.
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