Strasbourg vs. PSG - Christophe Galtier pre-match press conference
PSG hopes to be hours from D-Day as they will be visiting Strasbourg for MD37 of Ligue 1 with the possibility of clinching the title once and for all in their minds.
One point would be enough for Paris Saint-Germain to claim an 11th Ligue 1 title in the history of the club, something nobody has ever done before. If Lens lose their game, then PSG could also afford to lose theirs and still clinch the No. 1 spot in the standings.
PSG manager Christophe Galtier might be coaching on the road while at the helm of the French capital club for one last time this season as PSG will return to Paris for the season finale a week from now.
The French manager will have to tinker with his lineup this weekend, though, as two of his main players have been added to the list of players who won't be available for the game against Strasbourg in Marquinhos and Fabian Ruiz, both shut down for the remainder of the season.
Coach Galtier attended the pre-match press conference on Friday afternoon.
Here are some of the most interesting nuggets ahead of the match against Strasbourg scheduled for Saturday as PSG will go on the road for the last time this season as part of MD37 of Ligue 1.
Can PSG lose the title?
"You did the math! For the moment we are not champions and there are enough matches for us to lose it. I hope we will be champions tomorrow night!"
Can you give us your feelings about Lionel Messi's two seasons at PSG? Any conclusions?
"I wouldn't talk about last season, even if we were all very happy to see Messi arrive in our league. During this season, Leo has been irreproachable in his investment. I heard Antonetti's kind words yesterday, Leo is football and it's true. I saw him every day in training and during our matches. He has very interesting stats, in terms of goals and assists. I hear the remarks, the criticisms but when you have had a season like his, it is a performance for me, especially with a World Cup in the middle of the season. Leo is having a very good season. People always expect a lot more. But it was much better than last season."
How would you rate PSG over the season?
"I leave it to you to rate it; this is not an easy exercise. We are not at the time of the balance sheet. We have control of the league, but we will take stock after the two games."
Does Housni have the possibility of replacing Ekitike, who is forfeited?
"Housni will be left at the disposal of the under-19s during their semi-final against OM."
For some of the supporters, this title has a bit of a bitter taste, especially in terms of play. Do you share this analysis?
"I understand the remarks, the criticisms, especially since we had defeats at home. Our matches have not always been good. When we have to take stock, we will have to look at what we did in the first part of the season. I can understand the dissatisfaction of the supporters in certain matches against Lorient, Rennes, or Lyon. Let's see how the squad was, like tomorrow. There will be eight absentees. This is the story of a very special season. No player has ever played so many matches. We will do a precise assessment. I hear and accept the criticisms but I also watch all the championships and everyone has had bad times. Here, in Paris, there was a very important slump, especially after the round of 16 against Munich and the defeat in the Coupe de France against OM."
Was the squad short throughout the season?
"There was a desire to reduce the number of players. Six players arrived, and twelve left. There were obligations to meet."
Do you still think you will be on the PSG bench next season? Have you discussed that with the board?
"I am in permanent contact with Luis Campos, we communicate by telephone. I see the president very often. We haven't talked about next season. That there are names circulating... it's part of my job, it doesn't bother me at all. There is what you write, and I what I live on a daily basis."
Looking back, what did PSG lack to win the Champions League?
"At the start of each season you have favorites to reach the last four or the final. There have been some big surprises this season in the competition. Is it related to the format of the season? Maybe. We realize all the same that if we had made predictions, no one would have imagined the course of such and such a team. You have to be in good shape in February and we weren't. Because of the World Cup, the busy schedule, and the absence of several important players."
Are you working on next season and what are your projections?
"Everyone is working on what needs to be improved, on the benchmarks that we need to take in Poissy. We are going to make a very precise assessment of what PSG may have missed."