Sense of revenge: “No, there is no spirit of revenge. It was our only defeat in the league. Until five weeks ago, they were our direct opponent for the Ligue 1 title. There is no feeling of revenge, on the contrary. It’s a team that works very well, that I like a lot, that is very good with the ball and even better without the ball, it’s the best defense in Ligue 1 with Brest. It’s a tough ride. We are lucky to receive but we know what they are capable of. It’s a very motivating match but there is no revenge, those are quite ugly words…” (Nice inflicted on PSG what still represents today its only defeat of the season in the league, on September 15 , at the Parc des Princes, Editor’s note)

The Coupe de France: “They are different competitions. There are always areas to improve after each match, for all teams. The Coupe de France is very attractive. This is the case in all countries, whether it is the English Cup, the Spanish Cup… These are competitions which are centuries old and which are very popular with the public. It’s difficult because it’s a 90-minute match in which you have to be superior to your opponent, otherwise you’ll go to penalties or even be eliminated. We will take it as a final because it is a final. The objective is to play better than Nice.”

Ligue 1 compared to the level of the English match Liverpool-Manchester City: “It was a very high level match, with unique coaches, high level teams. I can give you my feelings about Ligue 1. Before arriving there, I thought it was a fairly easy championship, but it’s quite the opposite. There is a very high individual level in what the coaches offer. You will think that I say this because it looks good, but no, I find that it is a very competitive league, with a lot of talent, young players who then go to other championships. There is a high level among the coaches too. I can speak about this from experience.”

The turnover and the line-up against Nice: “I always try to put the 11 best players in each match. But each competition is different. It’s not the same thing to be first in Ligue 1 with a 10-point lead. We can draw in Ligue 1 because we have margin and we are looking for solutions. But the more the season progresses, the more we want to keep every chance of winning trophies. To do this, you have to win the Coupe de France in knockout matches. It will be a very open match because as soon as one or the other team goes ahead, the other is potentially eliminated and will have to take risks. PSG and Nice already take a lot of risks in normal times. If you are behind in the score, you take even more and it will make for a very interesting match for the spectators. I hope it will be more for ours than theirs…”

Marquinhos: “I don’t have any more information to give. There is nothing very worrying or serious. He could have played with Danilo Pereira in San Sebastian (against Real Sociedad) but I preferred not to play him. When a player is not 100%, I prefer not to play him. It was Danilo Pereira who played. For Marquinhos, as long as he is not 100%, there is no reason to take any risks. But again, nothing worrying or serious.”

Ousmane Dembélé said in recent weeks: “I don’t know actually. We study every detail for all players. For us, all matches are important. Obviously, the Coupe de France tomorrow (Wednesday) or the Champions League, these are high-level competitions, very attractive and which require us to present the best face of the team. Ousmane doesn’t really have a problem, he has always been at the coach’s disposal. We think that the best training is competition, but it is still necessary to control the playing time, and in particular for players as explosive as Ousmane Dembélé or Kylian Mbappé, who have incredible speed and which involves risks . We always look for what’s best for the team and that therefore involves making them play more or fewer minutes.”

His experience on endurance: “Satisfied with the players on a physical level? Yes, without a doubt. After the two draws at the start of the season (Lorient and Toulouse), I was asked if it was a physical problem, I said no. We are one of the teams that has the most high-intensity races. That’s wonderful. Physical trainers have plenty of tools. (…) We control everything thanks to these modern tools. As a coach, I have never had a problem with physical questions because it is very linked to the mental, almost spiritual aspect. By creating physical performance in the players, it is then fresher. It is one component among others, the mental, the physical, the rest, the diet… Everything is important. When we understand all of this, when we take it as a whole, that’s how we move forward.”

Dembélé’s backward positioning against Real Sociedad: “It’s a very simple concept: your best players need to touch a lot of balls. Dembélé is one of our best players. He’s one of the best in the world at overflowing. The majority of teams tend to close the heart of the game and you therefore have to go through the sides. Real Sociedad pressed with six players in the center and freed the lanes. The idea was therefore to generate superiority and find Ousmane Dembélé. We did it well. We generated a lot of chances, it hampered the pressing and Real Sociedad and we were able to go towards their goal. Where are the spaces? This is the question that always needs to be answered. We did it with Ousmane Dembélé.”

Kylian Mbappé and the leaders: “Since I arrived at the club, since my first meeting with Luis Campos and my first meeting with the president (Nasser Al-Khelaïfi), I have always felt total confidence, support. The project and the idea are new for the club, it’s different from other coaches who have been there. There are a lot of young players. The important thing is that our supporters follow us, that they think we play well. I’m having a great time from a personal point of view and as a coach. That’s how you carry out a football project.”

Comments collected at a press conference