Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) fans believe Lionel Messi will have to carry the team against Ajaccio as Carlos Soler replaces Neymar Jr. in the starting lineup. The Parisians face the newly-promoted side away today (October 21).
Neymar has been in spectacular form so far this season, scoring 12 goals and providing nine assists in 16 games across all competitions so far. However, the mercurial Brazilian is absent for the Ajaccio clash due to suspension.
Manager Christophe Galtier has decided to field newly-signed Soler as the No. 10 to operate behind forwards Messi and Kylian Mbappe.
The 25-year-old joined from Valencia at the start of the season and has since scored one goal in nine games for the Parisians.
That said, fans are unsure how he will perform in the no. 10 position. While they were happy to see Renato Sanches start in midfield, there were doubts about Soler’s positioning.
Here’s how the PSG fans reacted after Galtier announced his team’s lineup for the clash against Ajaccio:
The Parisians are currently at the top of the Ligue 1 table with 29 points on the board after 11 league games. Ajaccio, meanwhile, are languishing in the 18th spot, having picked up eight points from 11 games.
PSG coach Christophe Galtier analyzed the team’s recent struggles in attack in Lionel Messi’s absence
PSG have won only one out of their last four games across competitions and have struggled in attack, scoring only three in those games. Messi only played out of those four games as he was sidelined due to an injury.
When quizzed on how he will analyze the team’s recent struggles, the French manager told the media ahead of the clash against Ajaccio (via PSG Talk):
“I think we were not very predictable against OM. In all honesty, even if OM had a good game, we deserved to score a lot more goals. We had a lot of situations, a little bit of bad luck on Leo’s set piece, the goalkeeper was called upon and made a lot of decisive saves.”
“But in Lyon, we had a lot of situations and the Lyon goalkeeper was credited with a great performance too. Of course, it would be more comfortable to have more consistent gaps to have more important rotations during the games.”
Messi has registered eight goals and eight assists in 14 matches in all competitions this season.