PSG look to un­pre­dictable Ca­vani for goals at Basel

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPORTS -

PARIS ST GER­MAIN’S Edin­son Ca­vani (be­low) has wasted count­less chances this sea­son but has also con­verted more than any striker in Europe and they will again rely on his marks­man­ship in the Cham­pi­ons League at FC Basel to­mor­row morn­ing (Malaysian time).

With 10 Ligue 1 goals in as many games and four goals from three Cham­pi­ons League matches, the Uruguayan is the high­est scorer in the five big Euro­pean leagues de­spite an un­for­tu­nate rep­u­ta­tion for not be­ing the most clin­i­cal fin­isher.

With Zla­tan Ibrahi­movic hav­ing left PSG to join Manchester United in the close sea­son, Ca­vani took over the cen­tral strik­ing role at the Paris club and only AS Roma’s Edin Dzeko has scored as many league goals this term.

Yet Ca­vani started the sea­son be­ing jeered for a waste­ful per­for­mance against Metz and although he scored against Arse­nal in the Cham­pi­ons League in Septem­ber, was widely blamed – and blamed him­self – for miss­ing a hat­ful of chances in a 1 -1

draw.

“He is a ver­sa­tile for­ward, he’s the num­ber nine we need,” PSG full­back Thomas Me­u­nier said af­ter Ca­vani net­ted the only goal in a 1-0 Ligue 1 win at Lille last Fri­day de­spite only two of his six goal at­tempts find­ing the tar­get.

“Even if he misses chances, he’s al­ways in the good rhythm, he’s al­ways at the right place and he’s very dan­ger­ous. We could even make his life eas­ier if we were more pre­cise.”

PSG, sec­ond in Group A with seven points from three games, will reach the last 16 if they beat Basel at St Jakob’s Park.

Un­der new coach Unai Emery, who took over from Lau­rent Blanc, PSG have been less flam­boy­ant but re­main con­fi­dent they are on the right path.

“It is a bit tougher this sea­son but we know we can do bet­ter,” their Italy mid­fielder Marco Ver­ratti said. “We cre­ate a lot of chances and we con­cede only a few.”

De­spite a 3-0 win against Basel in the first meet­ing, PSG will be wary of their hosts, who are 12 points clear in the Swiss Su­per League fol­low­ing a 2-0 vic­tory over Grasshop­pers.

“We’ve been play­ing well but there are a few things we can still im­prove,” said Basel at­tack­ing mid­fielder Ma­tias Del­gado.

Coach Urs Fis­cher warned that his side must be more fo­cused af­ter tak­ing their foot off the gas against Grasshop­pers.

“We had the game un­der con­trol but af­ter an hour we gave them the keys,” he said. “We can­not let this hap­pen.” – Reuters

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