Speaking ahead of PSG’s clash with Chelsea tonight, Laurent Blanc has stressed the importance of shutting down Chelsea’s counter-attacking style:
“Yes, we know that Chelsea are a very counter-attacking team. They like to counter-attack. They will surely have chances to do that tomorrow, and next week, because you can’t control everything during a game.”
“We’ll have to be really strong defensively when it happens, because I think on Wednesday we have to score to win the game. When you play at home and you want to win, you need to make sure that you don’t concede goals. It will be important.”
Blanc has identified a threat that is clear for all to see. This season, Chelsea have performed best when their opponents attempt to dominate possession, and take the game to them. Utilising the aforementioned counter-attack, they have then gone on to score when the opposition players are out of position up the pitch.
After a dip in domestic form, Chelsea have been relegated to the role of underdog in the first match of the two legged tie. The Blues’ comprehensive 6-0 thumping of Arsenal was offset by two poor results against Aston Villa and Crystal Palace. In both fixtures, Mourinho’s men were expected to run out clear winners, but were defeated 1-0 after putting in lacklustre performances.
Meanwhile, the relentless PSG machine rolls on. The Parisians have won their last nine games across all competitions, and have all but secured consecutive Ligue 1 titles. When the two teams square up this evening, all eyes will be on Zlatan Ibrahimovich and Eden Hazard, both of whom have been in unstoppable form this season. A 5 star performance from either man could single handed drag their side through to the semi-finals of the competition, and further solidify their status as one of the world’s best.