PSG: Ruiz-Atil, Fadiga … young people, a remedy used sparingly by Tuchel

While the executives of the group drag their cleats weighed down by an overloaded schedule and a lot of injuries, the young people, whose respective championships are interrupted, dream of helping them. Kays Ruiz-Atil, Bandiougou Fadiga, Timothée Pembélé and a little further behind them Xavi Simons, the players from the training center, offer an option little used until now by Thomas Tuchel to cope with the accumulation of fatigue.

This season, despite the possibility of expanding the group and making five substitutions, only Ruiz-Atil and Bandiougou Fadiga have enjoyed playing time, with a total of 125 minutes between them, including a start for the first. Data that does not include Mitchel Bakker, 20, recruited from Ajax in the summer of 2019. The current contenders are between 17 and 19 years old and had never known the pro group before this season, which does not facilitate not more massive use.

“If there are opportunities, young people must seize them,” says Thomas Tuchel. The criteria are very easy. The quality. And more important than the quality: the mentality. Do they have this ( Editor’s note: he clenches his fists and grunts )? Do they really, really want or wait for the opportunity to come? This is what makes the difference. The German manager therefore does not wish to grant any special privilege in the current period. Arnaud Kalimuendo, considered too tender and eager to have playing time, was loaned to Lens. The departures of Kouassi and Aouchiche, in addition to those of older Zagadou for example, deprived PSG of players who could have settled more strongly in the rotation.

But for now, morale is good among the hopefuls. “We are progressing more in training with Rafinha and Verratti than with the U 19”, underlines a relative of one of them. “Tuchel speaks with the young people and his deputy (Zsolt Löw) too. The players are welcoming and we really feel a great atmosphere in the group, complete an intimate atmosphere of another nugget. You have to take what there is to take. I hope the coach will give them room, especially with the elimination of the Coupe de la Ligue, we were afraid that the opportunities would be rare. “

“We have high expectations vis-à-vis them”

Since taking office, the PSG coach has had a certain contrast. He calls a lot of young people, with 23 different elements of the training center summoned in barely two and a half years, of which at least 14 have come into play. Between them all, these players accumulate only 89 starts in 114 official matches directed by Tuchel . None of the Titis has so far managed to follow in the footsteps of Kimpembe or Rabiot by becoming a member of the typical team. Colin Dagba, with 26 games started, is the one who is best established under the era of the German technician.

Sometimes critical of the mentality of young Parisians on his arrival, the coach insists once again on the attitude: “There are always opportunities, but a player cannot wait, it will never be enough. You have to fight, fight and fight for every minute in a club and a team like this. We have high expectations of them. They have the opportunity to show off, because they train almost every day only together, because everyone else is playing games, are recovering and not training. “And the manager concludes with a touch of encouragement for his newbies:” The situation is not easy but they have to adapt. And as soon as they have the opportunity, young people must show themselves. “

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