Why Former Reims Boss Not Worried About PSG Starlet’s Playing Situation Behind Mbappe

Paris Saint-Germain needed a striker this past summer as the capital club wanted to offload Mauro Icardi, who had flopped during his tenure. Sporting advisor Luis Campos went with Stade de Reims goal scorer Hugo Ekitike

At 20 years old, Ekitike is part of the future at PSG, but like any player, the France international wants to be playing right away, but his former manager at Reims, Franck Chalenço, wants the young goal scorer to remain patient. 

“Hugo has very rarely experienced these situations,” Chalenço told L’Equipe (h/t Paris Fans) in a recent interview. “He has always been a starter and leader in our youth teams. Somehow, it’s part of his training that he experiences this.

“But I’m not worried. Because he is an intelligent boy with character, mentally, he knows what he wants. Afterward, the integration will take time, six months, a year …”

Ekitike is stuck behind Kylian Mbappe, who currently plays that striker position, although the 23-year-old would like to play a more free role. Nonetheless, the former Reims goal scorer knows it’s challenging to break through. 

This 2022-23 season, Ekitike has appeared in seven games while making one start and is averaging 19 minutes per game. The integration process has been slow, but with the 2022 FIFA World Cup about to begin, games will be clustered together.

PSG will need to count on Ekitike in some Ligue 1 and Coupe de France fixtures as they cannot afford to run Mbappe and the other attackers, Lionel Messi and Neymar, into the ground post-World Cup. 

If PSG hopes to make a deep run in the UEFA Champions League knockout stages while competing with Ligue 1 and Coupe de France, Ekitike will play a significant role. 

Tags Hugo Ekitike Kylian Mbappé
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