Laurent Blanc admits PSG have little chance against Barcelona

French side lost home leg 3-1 but welcome back Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Marco Verratti

Paris Saint-Germain’s Blaise Matuidi  and  Zlatan Ibrahimovic talk before a training session at  the Nou Camp  ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League quarter-final second leg against Barcelona. Photo: Gustau Nacarino/Reuters

Paris Saint-Germain’s Blaise Matuidi and Zlatan Ibrahimovic talk before a training session at the Nou Camp ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League quarter-final second leg against Barcelona. Photo: Gustau Nacarino/Reuters

 

Paris St Germain coach Laurent Blanc accepts his side face an almost impossible mission trying to turn around their Champions League quarter-final against Barcelona at the Nou Camp on Tuesday.

The Ligue 1 champions were swept aside in their own stadium last week by a dominant Barca led by a lethal Luis Suarez who grabbed a brace in the 3-1 defeat.

PSG have Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Marco Verratti back from suspension for the second leg but Thiago Silva joins Thiago Motta among the injured and David Luiz is also a fitness doubt.

“We have to think that we have to score and I am sure that we will but we have only a small chance to go through,” Blanc told a news conference in Barcelona on Monday.

“We cannot afford to concede goals and this here is practically impossible.”

“All the teams that play here in Europe concede at least one. They (Barca) have attacking players with incredible talent,” Blanc added.

He said that whatever fate awaits his team he will not make excuses about players missing.

“Those who are not here were not fit for the game and I wish I could have had them but it is not possible and it is no point feeling sorry about it,” said Blanc.

“We have to show that we want to win, show that we are capable of doing it and give a better account of ourselves than in the first match.”

Ibrahimovic, currently serving a ban domestically for abusive comments to a referee, returns to the club where he played during the 2009-10 season and coach Blanc hopes it will give him a lift.

“Ibra likes these these kinds of games when there is nothing to lose,” he said. “He will help us and I am looking forward to seeing him play.

“He is very important for us and is training hard each day. He is in good form.” Porto will need to hit top form to advance against five-times champions Bayern Munich on Tuesday despite holding a 3-1 first leg advantage in their quarter-final, coach Julen Lopetegui said on Monday.

The Spaniard warned Bayern remained lethal even though they were missing several big names including Arjen Robben and David Alaba.

“We have to produce a great performance against one of the greatest teams in the history of Bayern,” Lopetegui, whose team are unbeaten in the competition this season, said.

“I am expecting a superb Bayern team, regardless of who they will end up playing and we are prepared for what will happen.”

Bayern are also without Javi Martinez and Mehdi Benatia, while winger Franck Ribery looks set to miss the game with a nagging ankle injury.

Germany captain Bastian Schweinsteiger returned to team training on Monday but he is also doubtful to start having been out for weeks with an ankle injury and a subsequent virus.

Bayern are chasing a treble of titles and their fourth straight Champions League semi-final appearance. Twice winners Porto have not reached the last four since winning the trophy in 2004.

Lopetegui had the luxury of resting nine players who had played against Bayern in their 1-0 league win over Academica on Saturday.

“We need to put everything we have planned into practice,” said the coach, who was a former Barcelona and Spain team-mate of Bayern coach Pep Guardiola.

Porto will be without suspended Danilo and Alex Sandro but Jackson Martinez, who made his comeback from injury against Bayern and scored their third goal and Ricardo Quaresma, who scored the other two, are looking in fine form.

They also have defender Ivan Marcano back from suspension.

“It will be a very difficult task but we will try to find simple answers,” Lopetegui said.

“We like the idea of playing Bayern, who are one of the best teams in the world. We cannot think about what could happen, we must focus on the game tomorrow and try to give the answer on the pitch,” he said.

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