Paris Saint-Germain’s imminent overhaul will redistribute the cards within the squad once more and there will be players who benefit from that and other who will not. Luis Campos is hard at work shaping the French champions’ new sporting project as Christophe Galtier awaits confirmation as head coach with Mauricio Pochettino and the capital club still negotiating compensation packages for the Argentine and his staff.
We take a closer look at those who could enjoy a new lease of life at Parc des Prince and those who might be shown the door.
Goalkeepers: Hope for Keylor Navas?
PSG’s No. 1 for the 2022-23 season will be one of Gianluigi Donnarumma or Keylor Navas, but the Costa Rica international could yet be favored by Galtier once in place. Experience can be a significant asset in the case of a serial winner like Navas and the 35-year-old is not exactly in terminal decline just yet. Donnarumma is a fine shot-stopper, the logical choice for the future, and Galtier has shown himself willing to trust younger players with his success in Lille. However, part of the Frenchman’s formula for Ligue 1 victory with Les Dogues was the veteran presences of both Jose Fonte and Burak Yilmaz so do not write off any old timers just yet.
Defenders: Presnel Kimpembe moving on?
One of Campos’ early targets is Inter Milan’s Milan Skriniar, which immediately raises questions about how PSG will approach the new campaign defensively with captain Marquinhos, Presnel Kimpembe and Sergio Ramos, the notable names in the central roles. Abdou Diallo and Thilo Kehrer can also play through the middle, so at least one or two will suffer further reduced game time. The obvious starting point is Ramos and simply whether he is fit enough for the club to persevere with him for another term at the age of 36.
Nobody doubts the Spaniard’s experience, but potentially losing an influential homegrown player 10 years younger in Kimpembe would be the shortest of short-term gambles. Should Skriniar arrive, he could form a formidable trio with Marquinhos and the Frenchman with Ramos a rotation option and one or both of Diallo and Kehrer moved on which would also pave the way for a youth academy graduate such as El Chadaille Bitshiabu to enter the squad in a meaningful way.
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Midfielders: Marco Verratti a winner or a loser?
For years now, PSG’s midfield has been built around Marco Verratti. Fit and in-form, the Italy international transforms the team. Whenever he is unavailable, though, Les Parisiens might as well not have a midfield unit such is the paucity of reliable replacements. That Campos is looking to bring in the likes of Vitinha from FC Porto, Renato Sanches from LOSC and Seko Fofana from RC Lens suggests that the single player nature of the midfield has been identified and that the position will be restocked and reshaped with Verratti likely still a central figure but no longer indispensable to the point that the team cannot function without him.
As for Leandro Paredes, Idrissa Gueye, Ander Herrera, Julian Draxler, Danilo Pereira and Georginio Wijnaldum, it is unlikely that all of them will be moved on, but chances will be limited for them moving forward. The likes of Pereira can be recast in central defense which could mean that he retains a certain value while Gueye’s profile is not the easiest to find on the market regardless of Galtier’s preferred styles. However, a reported contract extension for Paredes to preserve his value could also make it very difficult to shift him while Draxler is only now starting to be open to a potential departure.
Attackers: Unwanted Neymar and Mauro Icardi
We all know that Kylian Mbappe is the main winner in this entire PSG scenario given that the project will be given a major overhaul, but there are few other attacking figures who stand to benefit from this summer’s changes with Mauro Icardi and Neymar top of the list of players to move on. Lionel Messi is almost certain to stay and see out the remaining year of his contract assuming that PSG do not activate the option in his deal for an additional season while Gianluca Scamacca has emerged as the most likely option to bolster the ranks.
Neymar and Icardi will be complicated to move on, but potential landing spots could materialize over the summer while Pablo Sarabia and Arnaud Kalimuendo could either be added to the mix or allowed to leave. There is also the possibility that Galtier does not set PSG up with a front three moving forward which would create fewer potential roles and possibly motivate some to leave this offseason.