Chelsea have drawn Ligue 1 champions PSG for the third time running in UEFA Champions League. Last season, the Blues bowed out to the Paris side in the round of last-16 and PSG skipper Thiago Silva is confident PSG will get the better of Chelsea once again this season. The Brazilian defender believes the lack of a winter break would hurt London side’s chances in the next round of the competition.
“Chelsea are playing at Christmas and New Year, and that must be a great effort for them, a very difficult moment both mentally and physically,” the Brazil centre-back told Omnisport. “When it comes to the crucial moments of the season, the knockout stages of the Champions League and the end of the local leagues, they are more tired because they didn’t have a winter break. I hope we can take advantage of this situation, but in the Champions League, you never know what is going to happen.”
However, Silva doesn’t believe the tie will turn into an act of revenge for any side. He added: “I don’t know whose revenge it. Theirs or ours. Looking at last season, it’s theirs. But I believe there’s no such thing as revenge,” he added. “Both are great clubs, and they have great ambitions. The rivalry is something that stays outside the pitch; it’s more about the fans. We have great players to play a great match against Chelsea.”
Meanwhile, Chelsea club secretary David Barnard is confident that the Blues will progress to the next round of the competition.
“It’s a knockout game, and it depends on the form of the two teams over those two legs,” he told BT Sport. “I don’t think you can take league form into it. They said that about us just before the Porto game, that our form was bad, but we saw the quality of players we had, and we came through with no problems at all.”
“This is a team that we know very well because we played them at this stage last season,” Barnard added. “Unfortunately, we went out on away goals to an ex-player, David Luiz, but the year before we played them in the quarterfinals, so it’s even stevens. There’s no trepidation because we know them.”