Paris (AFP) – Paris Saint-Germain may go into Tuesday’s Champions League quarter-final second leg at home to Bayern Munich without two of their most important players, with coach Mauricio Pochettino claiming that captain Marquinhos and playmaker Marco Verratti are unlikely to be fit enough to start.
“We will see how Marquinhos feels tomorrow. He should be able to be in the squad, not to start, but he could be on the bench,” Pochettino on Monday told reporters when asked about the fitness of the Brazilian defender.
Marquinhos scored PSG’s second goal 28 minutes into their 3-2 win in Munich in the first leg last week but came off moments later with a thigh injury and did not play in Ligue 1 at the weekend.
Meanwhile Verratti missed the first leg after testing positive for Covid-19 following his return from Italy duty alongside Alessandro Florenzi. Verratti has missed PSG’s last three matches.
“It will be difficult for Marco to start, Alessandro too although we are waiting to decide,” added Pochettino.
PSG are hoping to avoid a repeat of what happened against Barcelona in the last round, when they won 4-1 away in the first leg but wobbled in the return at the Parc des Princes before drawing 1-1 and progressing.
“In the first half at home to Barcelona we struggled to hold onto the ball,” Pochettino said.
“The approach needs to be different to the Barcelona game. We need to defend well but also try to cause problems to our opponents. That is the challenge facing us.”
The winners will face Manchester City or Borussia Dortmund in the semi-finals.