PSG out to prove they are UCL contenders - Thiago Silva

David Cooper - Writer 11:26 21/10/2015
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Interesting project: Thiago Silva.

Paris Saint-Germain will set out to show off their Champions League title credentials on Wednesday when they square off against Real Madrid with top spot in Group A up for grabs.

Both teams go into the encounter at the Parc des Princes unbeaten in all competitions and each has wins in the pool over Shakhtar Donetsk and Malmo.

Neither PSG nor Real has conceded a goal in the opening two games. Still looking to capture the European title for the first time, PSG were knocked out in the quarter-finals for the third straight time last season.

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“We are an ambitious club,” captain Thiago Silva told Spanish newspaper AS. “We have a very 
interesting project that includes lifting the Champions League.

“It’s the club’s aim and ours as well. We face an important game on Wednesday and all great players wants to showcase their talent in matches like this one.”

Les Parisiens, coached by Laurent Blanc, have only lost two of their last 12 home games against Spanish opposition. The last time, however, was a 3-1 defeat to Barcelona in the last eight of the 2014-15 competition.

Silva believes PSG are a much stronger side following the addition of Argentinian midfielder Angel Di Maria this summer from Manchester United.

Di Maria, who won the Champions League as a Real Madrid player in the 2013-14 campaign, has three goals and set up three more in eight games for PSG.

“Di Maria has made us better,” he said. “He has great physical qualities and has a wonderful ability to provide assists as well as scoring. He is very important to the team.”

PSG’s Brazilian defender David Luiz is sidelined with a knee injury and will be replaced by Marquinhos, who will partner Silva at the heart of defence.

“Luiz is essential for us but I know that Marquinhos has grown a lot and will be one of the best 
defenders in two years,” Silva said.

Real have won their last three meetings with French sides, scoring nine times and conceding no goals, but face a stern test this evening.

“I’m not sure PSG have a weak point,” Real Madrid midfielder Isco said. “They are a very good side, very strong and complete, but they’re going to be up against a Real Madrid team with plenty of strengths and a forward line that is very hard to deal with.

“We’re confident about getting a good result. I reckon it will be a low-scoring game but I hope it’s us who get the few goals.”

The Spanish giants, coached by Rafa Benitez, welcome back defender Sergio Ramos and midfielder Luka Modric from injury.

But forward Gareth Bale has joined injured players Pepe, Dani Carvajal, James Rodriguez and Karim Benzema on the sidelines.

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