‘I Should Have Been More Important’ – Former PSG Defender Looks Back on His Two Seasons in Paris

Current São Paulo administrator and former Paris Saint-Germain center-back Diego Lugano spoke about his tenure in the French capital with France Football (via Canal Supportersand what went wrong after only two seasons. 

Lugano was one of the first transfers that Les Parisiens made when Qatar Sports Investments took over the club in 2011. According to TransfermarktPSG paid €3-million to Fenerbahçe for the Uruguayan international, which is why Lugano believes he should’ve had a more prominent role for the price they paid form him. 

Sportingly, I did not assure, it’s true. I should have been more important. I have often wondered why. I was one of the first foreigners of the QSI era to land. Leonardo had given me the responsibility to change the mentality of the locker room, to professionalize it in a way,” Lugano said. 

“I started this transition, but it was difficult to get people to accept that. I lost quite a bit of energy in this process. We had to go from a normal PSG to a millionaire PSG who would see the greatest players in the world land. It was a big change.”

It was not a bad price for a defender, who was 30-years-old, and possibly one that the capital club could squeeze a season or two of quality football; however, that never materialized. 

Lugano never brought over the form he had with his Turkish club. Instead, he barely made 20 appearances over two seasons with PSG. Eventually, the defender went out on loan at Málaga CF before being sold outright to West Bromwich Albion. 

Speaking with France Football, Lugano reflects on his time and believes that Les Parisiens could’ve done more to help him adjust to his new city. 

“I missed a bit of luck, good timing. We were under fire from critics because we were the new PSG. All of this contributed to the fact that the marriage did not go as I hoped. I was not helped because PSG was not ready to make such changes. I stayed four months looking for a school for my daughters. I had to manage to find an apartment, social protection. In a new city and without speaking the language, it was not easy. And it was during those 4-5 months that I had to play the most, being concerned about my family. 

“This is inappropriate. When you invest so much money on a player, you can’t welcome him like that. It tired me mentally. But I think I managed to change mentalities a bit. I tried to help, to participate. Besides, at the club, they know that I have been part of the change. That’s why when I go to Paris, I am received like a crack that I was not on the ground! I’m proud of it. I have been important in this quiet, difficult, but very useful transition.”

Tags Diego Lugano
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