Luis Enrique confident PSG can cope without duo in ‘difficult’ Monaco clash

By Sports Desk November 23, 2023

Luis Enrique is confident his Paris St Germain squad have the depth needed to cope without injured captain Marquinhos and France starlet Warren Zaire-Emery as they prepare to face Ligue 1 rivals Monaco.

Brazil defender Marquinhos picked up a hamstring problem during the World Cup qualifier defeat against Argentina, which PSG expect to see him sidelined for at least 10 days and so will also miss next week’s Champions League match against Newcastle.

The Ligue 1 leaders were already facing up to 17-year-old midfielder Zaire-Emery missing for the rest of 2023 with an ankle injury suffered while he scored on his senior France debut against Gibraltar.

Enrique, though, feels there is enough cover to see his side produce the required performance when they host third-placed Monaco on Friday night.

“We have a squad that is the best of the (Ligue 1) championship, in my view. The only thing that every time a player gets hurt, it’s sad, because they won’t be able to play,” Enrique said.

“However, the number of players is very broad and is at a very high level.”

Enrique told a press conference: “We are used to it (injuries), but we have to make sure that the players get back.

“We take stock of what happened to the players, and we advise according to each one to have the best possible recovery.”

Monaco sits just three points behind PSG and Enrique warned against complacency as his side look to maintain their seven-match unbeaten domestic run.

Enrique said: “Monaco is a team I really like. They don’t waste time calculating, they don’t ponder about the result, they press hard.

“They always play at a good level and are the team that has created the most chances behind us.”

The PSG boss added: “It is an important match because they are a direct rival, but there is lots of time left to go in the league and there are many games to be played.

“It is not decisive, but we want to play to a better level than our opponent and have more chances,

“It is going to be a difficult match – but I have never seen an easy match in Ligue 1.”

Monaco boss Adi Hutter is expecting an open encounter at the Parc des Princes.

“We are not going to change our style of play, even if it is PSG, the leader and favourite for the title,” he told a press conference.

“They are very dangerous because they have already scored 29 goals, compared to 25 for us, which is not so bad.

“They are on five consecutive victories, so it will certainly be an open match for both sides.”

Monaco look set to welcome back Brazilian right-back Vanderson for the first time since late September.

Former Southampton defender Mohammed Salisu is also stepping up his recovery following groin surgery, but is not expected to feature against PSG.

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