Tuchel on PSG’s Unity and New Format for Champions League Knockout Stage

Paris Saint-Germain recently arrived in Portugal for a three-day training session ahead of its UEFA Champions League knockout stage contest against Atalanta. The team is doing its best to remain mentally and physically ready for the challenge that the Serie A side will pose. It will likely be a tactical duel unlike one PSG has been a part of before in recent years.

On challenges, the new Champions League knockout stage format may be one for certain teams. For just the remainder of this season’s knockout stage, the quarterfinal and semifinal ties will be single-legged. For manager Thomas Tuchel, he acknowledges this new challenge. The German manager recognizes that he might need a different approach for the upcoming knockout stage compared to how he usually prepares for one over a traditional two-legged tie. He provided an interview with PSG TV and spoke about the new format.

“During the match, it might be different, like our substitutions, because we know there won’t be a second leg,” Tuchel said. “We won’t have the opportunity to correct things; we won’t be able to be happy with some results, like an away draw, and then be confident to win at home in front of our crowd.”

For weeks, one of the talking points with the club stemmed on whether the team would be focused and prepared for the fixture following the long layoff from play due to the coronavirus pandemic. Tuchel did not buy into the narrative that the team may not be fully prepared and instead spoke on the team’s readiness.

“We’re ready because we’ve played two finals in France to prepare,” Tuchel said. “It was good preparation because we played one match with extra time and a penalty shoot-out. But to begin with, it doesn’t change anything. We’ll get ready for that match like any other.”

Tuchel also touched on the team’s unity when on the pitch. He notices how unselfish they play and is pleased to see the team work together as a collective unit.

“The other key thing for me is that I can feel that the squad plays together,” Tuchel said. “They’re together not only when they’re attacking, not only to do spectacular things, but the lads also come together to suffer together, to work together, and to stay together when they don’t have the ball. And that’s the key, because there’s a lot of quality in our squad; we have a lot of spectacular forward-minded players but we always have to find a good mix between both.”

This should bode well for PSG as it will face an Atalanta side that is also known for its unselfish play on the pitch.

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Tags Atalanta Champions League Thomas Tuchel

1 Comment

  1. well touchel has done well with this team not only is he playing for france football as awhole because the french league has often been rediculed as a poor league as far as foot ball is concerned with some refering it as a farmer s league how ever with psg beating dortmund for a place in the quarter finals and if they face lipsig and beat bayern in the final well that will show every hater than french football is also a competitive league

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