Understandably things have been rather quiet around the Parc des Princes of late with the FIFA World Cup in Brazil kicking off in just two days after weeks of anticipation. Despite the debacle surrounding the country’s effort to get everything ready, with some of the infrastructure & stadia still not completed to full satisfaction – it is matters on the pitch which is going to enthral the eyes of the world.
Paris Saint-Germain is playing as big role as any club in terms of representation. With David Luiz arriving imminently you can more or less add him to the list of 11 players who play their trade at the French champions. It is a stark contrast to 2010 where there was no players emanating from PSG.
The hosts Brazil will kick-off the tournament in Sao Paulo against Croatia on Thursday night. The build-up to that will be one of pure excitement as the five time winners look to become the first host nation since France in 1998 to win the tournament on home soil. PSG will be well represented as the world of football takes centre stage at the Arena Corinthians. The skipper of the selecao is none other than our very own Thiago Silva. Captain fantastic will lead his team out, dreaming of replicating Cafu by lifting aloft that infamous gold plated cup above his head come July. The club has become a second team to many in Brazil due to the influx of Brazilians at Camp des Loges. Alex may have departed to AC Milan and Lucas Moura may not have made the cut but with Silva, Maxwell and the incoming Luiz all representing the hosts, fans of Les Parisiens may very well be rooting for Brazil themselves.
Then of course you have the boys representing France. Blaise Matuidi and Yohan Cabaye will be integral to Didier Deschamps three-man midfield as Les Bleus gear up for a physical encounter with Honduras on June 15th. Young Lucas Digne may very well be watching proceedings from the bench but who knows what part he may end up playing as the tournament wears on.
The Azzurri, Italy, with little Marco Verratti and the ever consistent Thiago Motta will have their work cut out in a group containing England, Costa Rica as well as Uruguay – lead by our own ‘El Matador’, Edinson Cavani. Salvatore Sirigu may be regarded as one of Ligue 1’s best goalkeepers if the results of the UNFP awards are anything to go by but he once again has to watch from the sides as Gianluigi Buffon takes his place in between the sticks as always.
One nation that is not going to be overly popular in Brazil is their arch rivals, Argentina. Regarded as one of the favourites – and rightfully so – as there is much emphasis on Lionel Messi who is yet to make a barnstorming impact on a FIFA World Cup. Ezequiel Lavezzi will be a predominant figure in the Argentine attack as La Albiceleste seeks a third World Cup.
It is going to be a month of pure football heaven for the purists and Paris Saint-Germain will be very well represented in terms of all that.