PSG formalize Luis Campos, awaiting Zidane?

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Paris Saint-Germain on Friday formalized the arrival of the Portuguese Luis Campos who is responsible for “the organisation, recruitment and performance of the professional team”. A foundation stone for the new project touted by the club and which, according to several French media, could be followed by the arrival of Zinedine Zidane.

PSG have a new project: that has been the watchword since the extension of the contract of French superstar Kylian Mbappé. This slogan has been followed by effects since the major maneuvers have been launched. The club announced the arrival of Portuguese Luis Campos as “sports advisor” on Friday, June 10. An arrival that could be followed by another: that of the legend Zinedine Zidane on the bench, according to several French media, including Europe 1.

No official announcement has been made to confirm the departure of sporting director Leonardo; Mauricio Pochettino is still officially the coach of Paris SG. But things are happening behind the scenes.

On Friday, the hypothesis of the imminent arrival of Zinedine Zidane, the child of Marseille who won four Champions Leagues on the Real Madrid bench – one as an assistant, three as a coach – was reinvigorated.

Very positively, Europe 1 calls for an “agreement in principle (…) for Zinedine Zidane to become the next coach”. According to RMC, the two sides are “close to an agreement”, even though “the talks should take a few more days before a final signature from the French coach comes”.

Zidane’s entourage did not respond to AFP’s question. Paris SG declined to confirm or deny the information. However, a source close to the club’s management relativized the information to AFP that such an agreement had been obtained.

49-year-old Zinedine Zidane left Real Madrid in 2021. Since then, he has been free of any commitment, even though he is regularly presented as Didier Deschamps’ natural successor at the head of the French team should he decide to leave after the World Cup. . Cup.

Last season, Paris SG won the eighth French league title in the Qatari era. But eliminated from Real Madrid’s round of 16, he still failed in his quest for the Champions League, the club’s main goal.

Luis Campos, a “football advisor”

Portugal’s Luis Campos, designated as “football adviser”, will be the architect of the club’s new project, built around Kylian Mbappe, who announced in May that he would remain with the club despite Real Madrid’s diligent courtship.

The arrival of Campos, a close friend of the superstar striker he met in Monaco, promises brilliant moments in the transfer window – the Portuguese showed it in Monaco and Lille – and bloodshed behind the scenes.

At 57, he is a strong character with recognized competence. He will not only have to redeploy the workforce, but above all devise a more coherent policy than Leonardo, who was fired on the night of Mbappé’s extension.

If Pochettino officially remains the coach of the Parisians, his departure seems logical. Since his arrival as a replacement for Thomas Tuchel, the Argentinian has not been able to convince for a season and a half. And his remaining contract year should not be a financial hindrance.

Zinedine Zidane, free, has the ideal pedigree to succeed him. He was in Paris, at the same time as the emir of Qatar, for the C1 final. A presence that has fueled all speculation.

In addition to Zidane, other names are also mentioned, in particular that of Nice coach Christophe Galtier, who worked for Campos in Lille for three years. The Portuguese had solidly built the northern team to champion France in 2021, a year after his departure.

A workforce that needs to be slimmed down and strengthened

After the coach comes the time of the players. Midfield has been a weak point at PSG for a number of years now, unable to find a partner for Marco Verratti in midfield. According to RMC, Paul Pogba, also coveted by Juventus, is “waiting for the formalization of Zidane’s arrival at PSG to start talks with the Paris club”.

With the departure of Angel Di Maria, Paris must also look for a winger. The name of Ousmane Dembélé, free of contract in Barcelona at the end of June, is often in the press.

Campos will also need to downsize a bloated workforce – a point where Leonardo failed, despite poor financial results for PSG, which posted €225m in losses for the 2020-2021 fiscal year.

In the hot seat, Mauro Icardi and Leandro Paredes have indicated that they intend to stay in a club where the salaries are high.

It will also be necessary to control the egos. “The best player in the world is Kylian Mbappe,” launched Nasser Al-Khelaifi, who appeared to relegate Lionel Messi and Neymar in the dressing room hierarchy.

Another topic: the clarification of the situation of goalkeepers Keylor Navas and Gianluigi Donnarumma, who want to stay next season and be number 1 – which would imply the departure of one of them.

With AFP

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