Paris Saint-Germain went into the new season as overwhelming favorites to win the Ligue 1 title for the 12th time in their history.
Their success last term saw them establish a new record for French top-flight championships, and it would be a brave move to back against them this time around.
It would be fair to say it has been an entertaining summer at the Parc des Princes, with several major storylines dominating the airwaves.
Much like playing free bingo games, there has been a degree of uncertainty about the eventual outcome, which only serves to add to the intrigue.
With that in mind, we look at the latest state of play at PSG before assessing whether the mini-revolution they have undertaken will pay dividends.
Enrique is a managerial upgrade
After dispensing with Christophe Galtier’s services as manager, PSG appointed former Barcelona and Spain boss Luis Enrique to replace him.
Enrique has embarked on revamping the squad this summer, focusing on signing younger talents rather than relying on overpaid superstars.
Lionel Messi, Neymar Jr., Mauro Icardi, Leandro Paredes, Sergio Ramos, and Renato Sanches are among a plethora of players who have exited the club.
Ousmane Dembélé, Manuel Ugarte, Lucas Hernández, Milan Škriniar, Marco Asensio, Gonçalo Ramos, and several others have arrived to refresh the squad.
While PSG was held to a 0-0 draw by Lorient in their opening game, Enrique looks a good bet to get the best out of the options at his disposal.
Mbappé saga an unwelcome distraction
Kylian Mbappé’s penchant for sparking rumors about his future has become one of the most tiresome aspects of the summer transfer window.
PSG have been desperate to persuade Mbappé to sign a new deal, but the Frenchman has remained reluctant to commit his future to the club.
His decision to dismiss overtures from the Saudi Pro League came as no surprise, given that most people think he is destined to join Real Madrid next summer.
The ongoing uncertainty over his future is an unwelcome distraction for the club and needs to be resolved as soon as possible.
PSG could emerge as Champions League contenders this season. Resolving Mbappé’s future will go a long way to determining whether that aim is realistic.
More domestic success beckons, but heartbreak in Europe awaits
Given the transfer moves they have made this summer, PSG should have little difficult mopping every piece of domestic silverware available to them in 2023-24.
Hernandez and Skriniar are excellent additions at the back, while Enrique is spoilt for choice in midfield and upfront.
Ugarte is a quality addition in the middle of the park and will provide PSG’s more creative players the freedom to showcase their talent.
Dembele has a point to prove after failing to live up to expectations at Barcelona but should sparkle in the calmer waters of Ligue 1.
Asensio and Kang-in Lee also look useful acquisitions, but PSG’s standout summer transfer will likely be Gonçalo Ramos’ loan move from Benfica.
The Portugal international demonstrated his goalscoring prowess at the 2022 World Cup and should be among the top scorers in France this season.
The prospect of Ramos being flanked by Mbappé and Dembélé is an enticing one for PSG and will leave Ligue 1 defenses quaking in their boots.
Success in Europe may be more difficult to achieve given the strength of the competition, but it is not beyond the realms of possibility if everything falls into place.
However, history suggests that PSG will find a way to stumble in the Champions League at some point, leaving them to settle on maintaining their dominance at the domestic level.