Psg without identity: 111 different formations in two years

Never the same 11 in the field since December 2019, both with Tuchel and with the highly criticized Pochettino. Who admits: “I’m not here to apply my ideas, but those of the club”

One hundred and eleven times Psg. In the sense that for 111 games, that is for more than two years, PSG has never played with the same team. And perhaps the chronic problem of identity of the Emir of Qatar’s club lies a bit in this number, in any case first at +11 in the standings, qualified for the second round of the French Cup and above all for those of the Champions League, where next month challenge Real Madrid. But so far, coach Mauricio Pochettino has never been able to find the right style of play for a squad packed with stars.


For weeks, on the contrary, the French media have been pushing the former Tottenham coach towards the exit, considering his transplant to the capital as a failure, especially since Pochettino himself, in an interview with the Equipe, admitted: “I’m not here to apply the my ideas but those of the club “. A sort of tactical surrender, faced with the puzzle of making players like Di Maria, Icardi, Wijnaldum, Verratti and one between Paredes, Gueye, Herrera or Pereira coexist with Messi, Neymar and Mbappé, without forgetting the duel between Donnarumma and Navas between the poles, or, in perspective, the integration of Sergio Ramos, between captain Marquinhos and the World champion, as well as Parisian trained at home, Kimpembe.


Problems for the rich, but still problems for Pochettino who therefore never managed to field the same team. The 111-game streak naturally also includes a year under Tuchel’s management who had started systematically changing teams at the end of December 2019. Since then, PSG has never played with the same players. With the German on the bench, however, the team from the capital had at least found a certain style. After some tactical digressions, the current Chelsea manager had given a strong offensive imprint to the game, perhaps leaving out the defensive phase. Pochettino, who took over from Tuchel a little over a year ago, initially preferred to clean up the rear and then build.


And starting to experiment in turn. Symbolic is the use of Verratti, initially positioned as an attacking midfielder, but now backward to be a director, perhaps making him work overtime as a midfielder, right or left, and also mixing everything race by race, even in the same 90 ‘, like Sunday in Lyon. (1-1). The advent of Messi, after the championship lost in the spring, has certainly upset Pochettino’s plans. Since August, in fact, the coach seems to advance by hypothesis, correcting, modifying, changing his mind, but without ever repeating himself. A method tolerated in autumn, due to the normal adaptation times of the new grafts, but now heavily criticized by the media.


Of course, the various injuries should not be forgotten, as well as the Covid periods that have kept various elements of the squad out in turn, as well as the normal turnover, essential for Pochettino also to avoid tensions in the locker room. But going up to 111 different formations is also considered synonymous with confusion and the impossibility of consolidating a path of growth. The one who, for example, has not yet entered Messi, scoring a single goal in Ligue 1. Too little. And yet the agreement with Neymar and Mbappé did not bring the hoped-for results. If not in flashes and above all in the Champions League, where then Pochettino plays the future. Regardless of which team he will send out on the pitch.