Football Features

Neymar, Mbappe, Di Maria & Icardi: PSG’s all-star attack aiming to halt Dortmund bandwagon

By Squawka News

Dortmund vs PSG: Fantastic Four video

Published: 18:26, 16 February 2020

Borussia Dortmund are flavour of the month ahead of the return of the Champions League – but Paris Saint-Germain will be determined to ensure Erling Haaland and co‘s bandwagon comes to an abrupt halt in the last-16.

Thomas Tuchel’s side have been labelled serial underachievers in recent years and they will need to be at their best to avoid yet another early exit at the hands of their Bundesliga rivals.

In many ways the two clubs are polar opposites, with PSG usually opting to spend big on ready-made superstars in an attempt to finally secure Europe’s most prestigious club trophy while Dortmund’s principles lie with the promotion of youth.

So, as two of Europe’s most exciting – and attacking – teams prepare to do battle at the Westfalenstadion on Tuesday night, what kind of form are PSG’s key players in?

Are they firing on all cylinders? Or could they struggle to up their respective games to the required level given that they are operating in a so-called farmer’s league? Squawka has taken a look at some stand-out statistics to find out….

Watch the video at the top of the article to learn more about PSG’s Fantastic Four.

Neymar

A prolific scorer and creator of goals, his mesmeric dribbling ability has bamboozled countless opponents in Europe’s elite club competition ever since his debut: 33 goals and 22 assists in 55 appearances is a direct goal involvement per appearance on average.

The Brazilian is a divisive figure, but you can’t question his talent.

Neymar PSG

Kylian Mbappe

Mbappe has been directly involved in 30 Champions League goals (19 goals and 11 assists) in his first 30 appearances in the competition.

Blessed with electric speed, excellent technical attributes and a veteran’s awareness of the optimum goal-scoring positions to take up, the Frenchman is on course to continue shattering records.

Angel Di Maria

The 32-year-old knows what it takes to reach the latter stages, having produced a Man of the Match display in the 2014 final as Real beat Madrid rivals Atlético 4-1.

It may not have worked out at Manchester United but since the start of the 2018/19 season, Jadon Sancho and Lionel Messi are the only other players with 20+ league goals and 20+ league assists in Europe’s top five divisions.

Mauro Icardi

The Argentine (somehow) only made his Champions League debut last season but has proven he was always capable of playing at the top level with nine goals in his first 12 appearances in Europe’s elite club competition.

MI9 is the ultimate poacher and – potentially – the final piece in the Parisian puzzle as they look to silence the critics and avoid getting knocked out at the last 16 stage for the fourth consecutive season.

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