Manchester United and Chelsea target the key for PSG's European run

The return of Edinson Cavani is going to be the key for Paris Saint-Germain's Champions League campaign, his inclusion could see eventual winners.

Edinson Cavani made his return to club action for Paris Saint-Germain against Marseille last week, he then missed the game against Bastia due to arriving late back from Uruguay on Saturday. PSG face Bayer Leverkusen on Wednesday night and Cavani has been included in Laurent Blanc’s squad, he may not start on Wednesday, but the inclusion and return to fitness of the Manchester United and Chelsea target will make PSG one of the favourites to lift the European Cup this season.

Last season PSG were knocked out of the competition on away goals to Barcelona, and they had their chances to score more than one in the Nou Camp. This is why the Qatari’s went and sanctioned the €64 million move for Cavani this summer, when you are a goal sort of knocking out Barcelona you obviously go and buy someone who scored 29 league goals in Italy.

Cavani’s return goal for PSG against Monaco was his 14th of the Ligue 1 season, he is on course to break the 20 goal mark, one that his strike partner Zlatan Ibrahimovic has surpassed in Cavani’s absence, but there is a chance that this partnership could combine for more than 50 league goals this season.

It’s not just the return of Cavani that makes PSG one of the favourites; it’s the combination of Cavani and Zlatan. The Swede now also has 11 assists this season – leading the league – and there is no stopping him at the moment.

When both play together, although Cavani has to start in a wider role, he actually plays most of the game centrally as Zlatan drops deep to collect the ball. This also allows Gregory van der Wiel, the PSG right-back, space to bomb forward and add to his four Champions League assists tally.

With Ibra dropping deep causing confusion for the defenders, it leaves spaces for Cavani to drop into; he’ll find those gaps and punish any team in Europe. The attacking duo, combined with the PSG midfield trio of Blaise Matuidi, Thiago Motta and Marco Verratti, means that PSG match up player by player as good as anyone in the competition right now.

They will dismiss Leverkusen on Wednesday in the Parc des Princes; 4-0 up after the first-leg, and then they will await the draw for the Quarter-Finals. One thing is clear, PSG are not afraid of anyone in the competition, it’s quite the opposite actually.

images: © jikatu

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