Christophe Galtier may not have arrived in the capital to “pile up the players”, he is not finished with his big maneuvers. The coach of Paris Saint-Germain proclaimed it in a press conference, the Parisian recruitment is not over. In addition to the transfer of Renato Sanches, formalized on Thursday at the beginning of the evening, the former manager of OGC Nice also requested the arrival of three players. After the arrivals of Vitinha, Hugo Ekitike, Nordi Mukiele and the final transfer of Nuno Mendes, the facelift of the French champions continues. But for what face? Summary of the files that should still shake up the Paris transfer window in the coming days.
A strong central defender
It is a priority that is starting to stretch. PSG has described the arrival of a new center back as one of the most urgent issues to be dealt with. Milan Skriniar’s track has been talked about for several weeks. But the soap opera is starting to spin in earnest, between Inter Milan who are demanding 70 million euros for their Slovakian rock, and Paris who are waiting, hoping to lower the mark. The Parisian leaders, Luis Campos at the helm, therefore consider a plan B, especially since Thilo Kehrer or Abdou Diallo will not remain in case of interesting offers.
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With a three-man defense now as desired by Christophe Galtier, the French champions must densify their rearguard around Marquinhos, Presnel Kimpembe and Sergio Ramos. PSG are interested in the profile of Wesley Fofana. But the base price of the former Stéphanois, and a first offer from Chelsea for an amount of 75 million euros rejected by Leicester, suggest that Paris is already out of the game. Another parameter to consider: the club wants to recruit heavyweights, without breaking the bank. The team evoked a “about limited to around 80 million euros“, excluding funds re-injected after sales. What to revive the noise of the corridor that leads to Gonçalo Inacio (Sporting), less expensive track mentioned in mid-July by Fabrizio Romano?
An athletic midfielder
This is perhaps PSG’s most important summer project. With the new 3-4-2-1 system, the Parisian midfield loses an element and has to be partly reinvented to suit the style of play that Christophe Galtier is looking for. On paper, the squad is still on offer, in addition to the pairing of Marco Verratti – Vitinha who started during last Sunday’s Champions Trophy, and Renato Sanches who just arrived this Thursday evening. But of all the remaining training environments, some are in the process of leaving (Wijnaldum), at the heart of persistent rumors (Gueye, Paredes) or completely shelved (Herrera, Rafinha).
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An attack delivery – finisher
This is perhaps where we least expected the Parisian club. Hugo Ekitike has arrived from Reims and Pablo Sarabia is intent on proving his worth after a very convincing season in Portugal. Mauro Icardi is still put up for sale, without success. But PSG would continue to look for a centre-forward with well-identified qualities: those of “handler-finisher” according to L’Equipe. In short, a complementary player to the creative Lionel Messi and Neymar, and less “ball carrier” than Kylian Mbappé. In short, a Gianluca Scamacca, a time announced near the Parc des Princes before joining West Ham.
So what about Arnaud Kalimuendo, the young Titi on loan for the last two successful seasons at RC Lens? The 20-year-old is not a physical monster as this type of striker can sometimes suggest. But his good preparation and especially his progression in recent months could solve PSG’s problem. Or a suitor – such as the recently mentioned Stade Rennais – takes the opportunity to secure the transfer of the player with 12 goals last season in Ligue 1 and offers a budget extension to the French champions. Or Kalimuendo’s qualities end up convincing the Parisian leaders that he may be the right man for this profile. His 2021-2022 statistics speak for him: a goal every two games played, in the highest percentage of attackers in the five major championships with the best percentage of successful passes, in the seven percent with the best percentage of shots at goal
Arnaud Kalimuendo and Amine Talal during PSG – Orleans in a friendly match on July 24, 2021
Credit: Getty Images
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