Thursday, November 10, 2016

Paris Saint-Germain Greatest All-Time Team

Winning the League in 2014

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for the club.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

The club was formed in 1970 by the merger of Paris FC and Stade Saint-Germain.  Having won 31 titles in its history, PSG is the most successful club in French football. The Parisian side is also one of only two French clubs to win a European title. Domestically, PSG have won six Ligue 1 titles, a record ten Coupes de France, a record six Coupes de la Ligue, six Trophées des Champions and one Ligue 2 title. In international club football, Paris have won one UEFA Cup Winners' Cup and one UEFA Intertoto Cup
Cup Winners' Cup 1995-1996

GK: Joel Bats (France)
Bats earned 50 caps for France between 1983 and 1989.  He was the starting keeper for France during its Euro 1984 winning campaign at home, and then, the World Cup Finals in 1986, where he saved penalties against both Socrates and Zico.  He played first with Sochaux. He later played with Auxerre and Paris St.Germain.  He spent 7 seasons in Paris.
Joel Bats

GK: Bernard Lama (France)
Lama left Guiana in 1981 to come to Franceto become a professional footballer.  He started with Lille, but also played in Brest and Metz.  In 1992, he joined PSG, where he found stardom.  He won the Cup Winners' Cup in 1996.  After a brief career with West Ham and Rennes, he retired.  Capped 44 times.  He was mainly a backup throughout his NT career.  He was on the team that won the WC in 1998.

GK: Salvatore Sirigu (Italy)
Having begun his career with Palermo, he moved to PSG in 2011. Twice voted the Ligue 1 Goalkeeper of the Year, his honours at the club include four consecutive league titles, and all four domestic competitions in both the 2014–15 and 2015–16 seasons. Since 2010 Sirigu has been a regular member of the Italian national team, and was selected for major tournaments such as UEFA Euro 2012, 2014 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 2016, as well as the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup.

DM/RB: Laurent Fournier (France)
Started at Lyon.  His career took him to St.Etienne, Marseille, PSG, Bordeaux and Bastia.  He was a part of the team that lost the Champions' league Final in 1991 with Marseille.  In 1996, he won the Cup Winners' Cup with PSG.  Capped 4 times.

CB: Ricardo Gomez (Brazil)
He started his career with Fluminense at home before joining Benfica in 1988.  He would then join Paris St.Germaine in 1991.  He went to play in Italia 1990, where Brazil was known for their defensive tactics.  In 1994, he was selected as the captain for USA 1994.  However, he was injured at the last minute and did not attend the WC Finals.

CB: Thiago Silva (Brazil)
Thiago Silva  became the most expensive defender in history when he moved from Milan to Paris St. Germain.  Before moving to play in Europe, he played for Juventude and Fluminense in Brazil. He was a key player as Fluminense to the Final of VCopa Libertadores in 2008.  For the national team, he was the captain of Brazil ill-fated team in World Cup 2014, but did not play against Germany in the semifinal. He was an unused sub at the WC Finals in 2010.
Thiago Silva
CB: Jean-Marc Pilorget (France)
Pilorget played mainly for PSG, except a loan season with Cannes and a season with Guingamp.  He is the all-time leader in appearance for Paris Saint-Germain, with 370 matches. He also won the league title with his club in 1986.  

CB: Alain Roche (France)
Alain Roche played for Bordeaux, Marseille, Auxerre, Paris SG and Valencia. His most productive years were spent at PSG, where he notably won the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1996. For France, he played 25 times. He went to European Championship of 1996 in England.

CB: Mario Yepes  (Colombia)
Mario Yepes played 102 matches for the Colombia.  He was a member the team that won the Copa America in 2001. He captained Colombia at the World Cup Finals in 2014, where they reached the quarterfinal.  As for his club career, he played in Colombia, Argentina, France and Italy.  He was known as one of the best defender playing in France when he played with Paris St.Germain. 

LB: Gabriel Heinze (Argentina)
Nicknamed Gringo, he made a name for himself at Paris Saint-Germain, moving in 2004 to Manchester United and subsequently to Real Madrid, winning four trophies with the latter two clubs. He started and finished his 18-year professional career with Newell's Old Boys. Heinze played 72 times with Argentina, representing the nation at two World Cups and as many Copa América tournaments.
Gabriel Heinze

DM: Paul Le Guen (France)
During his playing career, Le Guen played at Stade Brest for six years, Nantes Atlantique for two years, before leaving Brittany for Paris St. Germain where he played for seven years (with 478 appearances and a Cup Winners' Cup medal in 1996).  At international level he played 17 times for France due to injuries and he was part of the team which lost out on a trip to the World Cup in 1994.

CM/DM: Dominique Bathenay (France)
Bathenay played for AS Saint-Étienne from 1973 to 1978, and for Paris Saint-Germain F.C. from 1978 to 1985. He was a member of the French squad that competed at the 1978 FIFA World Cup. He obtained a total number of twenty international caps for the France national football team, scoring four goals, in the years 1975-1982.
Dominique Bathenay
CM/DM: Luis Fernandez (France)
Born in Spain, he moved to France when he was 4 years old. He started at PSG, where he played most of his career.  He also played for Racing Club and Cannes.  Capped 60 times.  He was a star midfielder during France's run at Euro 1984.  He was a member of the great French midfield known as the "magic square" along with Jean Tigana, Alain Giresse and Michel Platini.

RW: Dominique Rocheteau (France)
Dominique Rocheteau was a member of the Saint Etienne of the late 1970's, where they reached the Champions' League Final.  He was a member of the Golden Generation that won the European Championship in 1984 and playing in the World Cup Finals in 1978, 1982 and 1986.  
Dominique Rocheteau 
LW: David Ginola (France)
For the national team, he was blamed for the goal against Bulgaria that eliminated France for the 1994 WC qualification.  He moved to England shortly afterward.  Ginola became a big star at the English Preimer League in the late 1990's.  In England, he played for Newcastle United, Tottenham Hotspurs, Aston Villa and Everton.  he won both PFA and FWA Player of the Year in 1998-1999.

AM: Valdo (Brazil)
Valdo made his professional debuts with Grêmio Football Porto-Alegrense, with which he won four consecutive Rio Grande do Sul Leagues. In the summer of 1988, he signed with S.L. Benfica of Portugal, alongside compatriot Ricardo Gomes. Both Valdo and Gomes left for Paris Saint-Germain F.C. in the 1991.  After he left PSG in 1995, he returned to Benfica and also played in Japan.  Capped 45 times. He went to Mexico 1986, but did not play.  He played in Italia 1990.

AM: Jay-Jay Okocha (Nigeria)
In 2007 he was voted number 12 on the greatest African footballers of the past 50 years by CAF.  He was Nigeria Player of the Year in
1995, 1997, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005.  He played in three WC Finals(1994, 1998, 2002) and won an Olympic Gold medal. he played for Fenerbahçe, Eintracht Frankfurt, PSG, Bolton Wanderers and Hull City.

AM: Rai (Brazil)
Rai was noted playing for São Paulo and Paris Saint-Germain, winning 10 major titles with the two teams combinedand nearing the 100-goal mark. He is the younger brother of Brazilian footballer Sócrates. Capped 45 times.  He was the captain of the National Team at USA 1994, but he was used mainly as a substitute at the latter stage of the Finals.  Dunga became the captain.
AM/LM: Ronaldinho (Brazil)
He was a member of tyhe "Three R's" with Rivaldo and Ronaldo that helped Brazil winning the WC in 2002.  He started his career with Gemio before moving to Europe. He played with Paris St Germaine and Barcelona before his form started to drop. He formed the REM line with Etoo and Messi before fighting among them destroyed the team. 

AM: Safet Sušić (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
He was one of the greatest Yugoslavian players.  He played for FK Sarajevo, Paris Saint-Germain and Red Star Saint-Ouen and internationally for Yugoslavia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. He was voted Paris Saint-Germain's best player of all time and the best foreign player of Ligue 1 of all time by France Football.  He represented the nation at the 1982 and 1990 World Cups, and at Euro 1984. 

AM/FW: Mustapha Dahleb (Algeria)
Dahleb held the record for all-time leading scorer for Paris Saint-Germain in the French first division with 85 goals. before being surpassed by Zlatan Ibrahimovic.  Dahleb is the club's third all-time goalscorer in all competitions, with 98 goals.  Dahleb played with the Algerian national team in the 1982 FIFA World Cup, where Algeria beat West Germany.

AM/FWGeorge Weah (Liberia) 
In terms of individual awards, no African player wins more awards than him.  He was was named FIFA World Player of the Year and won the Ballon d'Or in 1995.  He won African Footballer of the Year: 1989, 1994, 1995.  He was voted African Player of the Century in 1996.  He had great careers with AC Milan where he won two Serie A titles.
George Weah

ST: Pedro Pauleta (Portugal)
Pedro Pauleta never played in the Primeira Liga, having spent most of his career in Spain and France. He had his most successful spell at Paris Saint-Germain, where he was 3 times the top goalscorer in Ligue 1, he was also voted twice as the division's player of the season. Pauleta also scored 47 goals in 88 matches for Portugal, a national record at the time of his retirement. He played for his country in two World Cups and two European Championships.
ST: Carlos Bianchi (Argentina)
Carlos Bianchi debuted with Vélez Sarsfield at the age of 18. In 1973, Bianchi was signed by Stade de Reims in France, where he was top scorer in Lique in 1974, 1976 and 1977.  In 1977 he joined Paris Saint-Germain in which Bianchi was again the top scorer of the league in 2 seasons spent in the club.  he also played for Strasbourg. He is the top scorer in the history of Vélez Sarsfield with 206.  Capped 14 times between 1970 and 1972.

ST: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Swden)
Zlatan Ibrahimovic was born in Sweden of Bosnian-Croat origin.  He won Sweden Player of the Year 11 times.  He was the Serie A Player of the Year for 5 times.   He played with Malmo, Ajax, Juventus, Inter Milan, Barcelona, AC Milan, Paris St.Germain, Manchester United and LA Galaxy.  He is currently the second-most decorated active footballer in the world, having won 32 trophies in his career. At the time of writing, he has over 116 caps. He is the all-time leading scorer for Sweden.  
Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Honorable Mention
Valdo, Juan Pablo Sorin, Leonardo, Michel Bibard, Sylvain Armand, Blaise Matuidi, Marco Verratti, Blaise Matuidi, Daniel Bravo, Vincent Guérin, Mickaël Landreau, Patrice Loko, Marco Simone, Edinson Cavani.

Squad Explanation
-- Salvatore Sirigu has won many trophies for the team.
-- The rightback position is weak. Bernard Mendy
-- Marco Verratti probably would become an all-timer at PSG.  At this moment, he is only 23 years old.  He is still too young to be considered to be all-timer.  I put him as an honorable mention.
--  Youri Djorkaeff only spent one year at the club, be helped to win  the Cup Winners' Cup.  I almost selected him, but the team has too many attack midfielders.  Valdo, Rai, Ronaldinho and Susic all have a much longer career than him.  
-- Edinson Cavani gradually earns his place on the team.  He is second on the all-time leading scoring table.  


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