Valencia vs. PSG  1 - 2

Article

Canales clings to qualification hope

13 February 2013 07:52

Valencia midfielder Sergio Canales says there is still all to play for in the second leg of their last-16 Champions League tie with PSG.

La Liga outfit Valencia suffered a 2-1 home defeat to the French giants in the first leg on Tuesday, with Adil Rami's last-minute strike and Zlatan Ibrahimovic's red card renewing their hopes after they trailed 2-0 late in the match.

"It's a bad result for us but we have hope. We knew they had quality up front and they showed that," Canales told reporters after the game.

"There is still a lot left in this tie and – even though we know it will be difficult – we will look to score early over there to give ourselves a chance."

Head coach Ernesto Valverde also spoke about the challenge his side overturning a first-leg defeat.

"We have to recognise that our opponent is a great team with great players and they have shown their strength," the 49-year old said.

"In the end we managed to score that goal and that gives us some hope but we know that the return (fixture) will be difficult."

Article

Costa plots PSG downfall

12 February 2013 04:07

Valencia midfielder Tino Costa is confident his side can overcome Paris Saint-Germain in Tuesday's Champions League clash.

The Spaniards welcome the capital club to Mestalla and the 28-year-old is aiming to put one foot in the quarter-finals after issuing a firm statement of intent ahead of the game.

"We know that we can beat this team and the proof will be tomorrow," Costa told reporters.

"We will go out and play it like any other game. They are an opponent and whilst it is possible for them to win, we will win.

"We can be very strong on our field. We must believe in ourselves and go out for the win from the first minute."

The Argentina international also identified where Carlo Ancelotti's charges may pose the biggest threat.

"PSG play very well on the counterattack. They have a powerful strikeforce, are very fast and they can do a lot of damage," Costa said.

Article

Ancelotti happy with Champions League preparation

9 February 2013 01:41

Paris Saint-Germain coach Carlo Ancelotti insists his side have had the perfect preparation for their Champions League tie with Valencia.

The former AC Milan boss says they will travel to the Mestalla on Tuesday 'mentally and physically' prepared following their 3-1 win over Bastia in Ligue 1 on Friday.

With one eye on the trip to Spain, Ancelotti gave Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Ezequiel Lavezzi a brief rest by starting them on the bench.

"We can go into the next match in the Champions League with confidence," Ancelotti told France Football.

"It's good preparation because the players have recuperated and we have the time to prepare mentally and physically.

"Menez has had a very good match and was decisive, while it was not difficult to convince Ibra (Ibrahimovic) to start from the bench.

"He understood why just as (Blaise) Matuidi and (Mamadou) Sakho did. There is always a risk of injury and the idea was to avoid it."

The win over Bastia extends PSG's lead at the top of Ligue 1 to six points, but Lyon do have a game in hand.

Ancelotti said he was pleased to collect three points, putting the pressure on the chasing pack.

"We won and took three points, which was our goal," he said.

"These are three important points in the league. The other teams have to play now, but for us the important thing was to keep picking up results."

Meanwhile, David Beckham will start training with PSG next week and could debut against Sochaux in Ligue 1 on February 17.

"He is coming on Wednesday and will train at the Camp des Loges with the team," Ancelotti said.

"We'll see his fitness and whether he can perhaps play the match against Sochaux."

PSG sporting director Leonardo also paid tribute to Menez, who opened the scoring in the victory.

"Sometimes we focus on big names like Ibrahimovic or Beckham and this is understandable, but today, I want to say a word about Jeremy Menez," Leonardo said.

"I think he is a huge talent and if he continues to show the kind of inspirational form he displayed tonight, he will be a great player.

"He is an incredible talent and I really hope that he will be able to be consistent and keep that level for 60 games. If he does that, Jeremy Menez will have his place in the PSG's history."

Article

Lavezzi wary of Valencia experience

6 February 2013 15:43

Paris Saint-Germain attacker Ezequiel Lavezzi says his club cannot afford to underestimate Valencia in their Champions League round-of-16 tie.

The Argentina international is determined to go far in the competition, but realises his team's lack of experience at the highest level could make things difficult for them.

"I'm like Leo (Messi) in that I don't watch matches when I'm not playing, but I know Valencia demand a lot of respect," Lavezzi told the official UEFA website.

"They're technically strong, they like to be on the ball and to use it well – and, to go back to my basic point, Valencia have lots of Champions League experience.

"I've learned in this competition that teams with experience have an advantage. Chelsea were one of those last season and we paid for it at Napoli.

"Our first stage in this tournament was good, but now it's at the stage where there can be no mistakes."

The first leg of the tie between PSG and Valencia takes place on February 12 at Mestalla.

Primera División table

# Team MP D P
16 0 +0 0
17 0 +0 0
18 0 +0 0
19 0 +0 0
20 0 +0 0

Ligue 1 table

# Team MP D P
14 0 +0 0
15 0 +0 0
16 0 +0 0
17 0 +0 0
18 0 +0 0