Javier Pastore will always be a fan favorite at the Parc des Princes.
The Argentina international was one of the first major signings for Paris Saint-Germain in the Qatar Sports Investments era and racked up 45 goals and 61 assists in 269 appearances for Les Parisiens.
Pastore’s PSG career spanned from 2011 to 2018 when he left for AS Roma where the now 30-year-old midfielder continues to show his quality but there’s no question that he is on the downward slope of his career.
In an interview with Líbero, El Flaco reflected on his career and in particular, his time in the French capital.
“It was a very nice project, I grew a lot as a player. I had to play with idols, with world football benchmarks, it was beautiful to be able to share with so many players of that level and to have been in the club for seven years.”
Pastore then commented on a constant criticism of Ligue 1 and why many believe Paris Saint-Germain has yet to win a UEFA Champions League title.
“In the French league in recent years PSG is far superior to the others, it is very strong individually, many times the matches are defined in the first half and you do not continue working at the same pace for 90 minutes. It is what is needed in the Champions League matches, that you cannot sleep for a second. Maybe you spend a month in France playing with teams that make you weak.”
For a long time Ligue 1 teams played a very defensive, low scoring style. When PSG got on top those teams didn't have the juice to come back thus the games bogged down in the 2nd half. So, he does kind of have a point. https://t.co/m5fiJJWwdp
— Marc Damon (@MarcDamon1) June 12, 2020
Pastore would know better than I whether this is correct or not since he has actually played in the league. However, we did see PSG battle back from a deficit to defeat Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League and reach the quarter-finals.
I think blaming the French league’s inferiority for PSG’s past troubles in the Champions League is very easy but it’s deeper than that in my opinion.
Let’s also not forget the role officials played in PSG’s two biggest losses in the Champions League (last year to Manchester United and 2017 against FC Barcelona). If some of those decisions go the other way, PSG probably would have advanced. The injuries to Neymar Jr. didn’t help either.
I’m looking forward to hearing Pastore’s comments on Major League Soccer if he makes the move to the Los Angeles Galaxy in the upcoming transfer window. Something tells me he’ll wish he was back in France.
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