We have a rare clip of Paris Saint-Germain manager Thomas Tuchel putting together his starting lineup to face Olympique Lyonnais on Wednesday night in the semi-final of the Coupe de France. Take a look:
Honestly, take a look at the starting lineup and tell me if it makes any sense at all:
🔥👊 Le XI de départ de cette demi-finale #OLPSG
— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_inside) March 4, 2020
OFFICIAL — PSG XI vs. Lyon: Navas – Meunier, Marquinhos (c), Kehrer, Kurzawa – Gueye, Paredes – Sarabia, Neymar – Cavani, Mbappe.
— Jonathan Johnson (@Jon_LeGossip) March 4, 2020
All of my complaints are made with the upcoming match against Borussia Dortmund in mind. You know, the really important UEFA Champions League match that will decide if PSG advances to the quarter-finals and if Tuchel keeps his job?
WHY IS EDINSON CAVANI STARTING?
What did Cavani do against Dijon FCO last weekend to deserve a starting spot against Lyon? If you played a drinking game where you took a shot every time Cavani missed a scoring opportunity you would be in the hospital with alcohol poisoning.
Mauro Icardi replaced Cavani late in the match against Dijon and guess what? He scored after five minutes. Icardi is by far the better striker. There is no argument against that fact. Icardi needs minutes against quality competition to prepare for Dortmund and tonight was the perfect opportunity. Clearly, Icardi has done something to upset Tuchel and that’s why he’s riding the bench. There’s no other explanation.
WHY IS THOMAS MEUNIER STARTING?
The Belgium international claimed he had no idea he was in danger of being suspended for the return match against Dortmund if he picked up a yellow card. So, he got a yellow card and is now suspended.
With Colin Dagba injured, that leaves Thilo Kehrer as literally the only player capable of playing right-back right now. So, what does Tuchel do? He plays Kehrer at center-back and Meunier at right-back.
I’m sure the minutes Meunier plays tonight will really come in handy next Wednesday when he’s watching his teammates battle Dortmund from the stands.
WHY IS LAYVIN KURZAWA STARTING?
Juan Bernat is healthy. He’s on the bench. He was out for a few weeks with an injury so you would think playing time would be valuable to get him up to speed for the Dortmund rematch, but nope. Tuchel believes that getting Layvin Kurzawa playing time is important despite the fact the club tried to ship him off to two clubs last January.
WHY IS LEANDRO PAREDES STARTING?
Tanguy Kouassi has done more to earn a place in the starting lineup than Leandro Paredes. Kouassi is 17-years-old and if Tuchel wants to play him against Dortmund, which seems to be the case, it might be important to play him against a quality side like Lyon.
The rest of the team is about what you would expect with Neymar Jr. and Kylian Mbappé leading the attack and Pablo Sarabia filling in for Angel Di Maria didn’t make the bench due to an injury that he’s just coming back from. Idrissa Gueye is in the lineup and while he struggled against Dortmund in the first leg, he’s still the best option that PSG has available.
PSG should win this match but again, in the context of the upcoming match against Dortmund, this starting lineup makes no sense at all.
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