Obviously disappointed with the elimination of his players, the Parisian sports director wants to be positive for the future.
Here it is, it’s over… After getting out of the hens on the wire, after qualifying torn against Barça and Bayern, PSG fell. Fell on stronger than him. Fallen short. Winners on the outward and return leg, Pep Guardiola’s Skyblues will play in the Champions League final on May 29, against Chelsea or Real Madrid. Asked by RMC Sport Tuesday, at the Etihad Stadium, Leonardo takes stock of a campaign that he considers positive and above all promising for the years to come. “We cannot forget what we have done in the last two years, insists the Parisian sports director. Last year, we lost 1-0 (in the Champions League final) against a team (Bayern Munich) which has won everything lately. And this year, we had ups and downs, but also very important victories against Manchester United, Barcelona and Bayern Munich. We eliminated teams that could win like us. For us, the goal is always to win, not to go to the semi-finals. But over the last two years, we have had a journey that puts us among the real candidates to win the title we want, the Champions League. ”
“We leave here being eliminated, but knowing that we are a large group and that we will achieve important things”
It remains to be seen when the Cup with big ears will fall into the hands of Paris Saint-Germain, which passed under the Qatari flag in 2011 and which has only dreamed of this for almost 10 years. “There are a lot of positive things, like the way we behaved, the fact that we got out of very difficult situations during the competition, we showed strength, congratulates the Brazilian. Mauricio (Pochettino) only arrived last January. Now is the time to build things. Honestly, I am optimistic about the future. We have to keep the very good things we did. (…) We leave here being eliminated, but knowing that we are a large group and that we will achieve important things. ”
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Leonardo was in any case in no mood to talk about the future of “Ney” – disappointing against City – and Kylian Mbappé – insufficiently recovered from his contracture in the right calf and forfeit – Tuesday night. “Honestly, this is not the time to make decisions or make announcements,” he swears. We must be proud of what we have done, but we must also keep the good things because we want to continue. Our goal is to win. We are not satisfied to be eliminated in the semifinals… But we are aware that it can happen against a team like City. And we played better than them on two of the four halves. We took some odd goals… It’s part of the game of course, and you have to be careful. ” A little more than the Parisians were in these two matches which were fatal to them. Three days after having railed against the referee of PSG-Lens, Leonardo in any case did not charge Mr. Kuipers. “I do not put elimination on the question of arbitration,” he assures us. The accusations made by some Parisian players have not escaped him, however, and we imagine that he will be on the front line when it comes to clearing things up on this issue.
Head to Rennes on Sunday and Montpellier on May 12
For the rest, disappointment will quickly give way to hunger to win, in Ligue 1 and the Coupe de France. Regarding the championship, the Red and Blue do not have their destiny in their hands. Three days from the end, it is Lille which appears at the top of the standings. Lille will travel to Lens this Friday (9 p.m.), during the 36th day, while Paris will travel to Rennes, Sunday (9 p.m.). “This is the first thing we talked about, ensures“ Leo ”, referring to the national games. It’s difficult, but we have to switch straight away ”. Note that Neymar Jr and company will go to Montpellier on May 12 in the semi-finals of the Coupe de France. Four or even five matches to avoid ending up empty-handed.