Pairs: Big-spending Paris Saint-Germain might sign a holding midfielder during the winter transfer window as they pursue their dream of winning the Champions League, coach Unai Emery suggested on Monday.
Qatar-backed PSG sent shockwaves through world football by luring Brazilian superstar Neymar from Barcelona for 222 million euros ($261 million) and setting up a record 180 million euros deal for teenage sensation Kylian Mbappe.
But the impressive riches of their forward line are not yet reflected in their midfield.
"Thiago Motta is a sentry for us and when he's out we don't really have a replacement," Emery told a press conference on Monday.
His side have a are runaway leaders in France's Ligue 1, but face Cristiano Ronaldo-led Real Madrid in a keenly-awaited Champions League last-16 double header in February.
Motta won the Champions League in 2006 with Barcelona and again in 2010 with Inter Milan and has been at PSG since 2012.
"Having a replacement for him if he's out would be the key area to strengthen," said Emery.
To balance the books it is thought PSG are likely to sell over the winter break with Brazil's Lucas Moura and French midfielder Hatem Ben Arfa thought to be surplus to Emery's requirements.
Meanwhile the Argentines Javier Pastore and Angel Di Maria are also believed to be potential departees.
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Ronaldo won the Golden Boot with five goals, the same as Patrick Schick of the Czech Republic who was also overlooked by UEFA’s expert panel of 16 coaches and former players.
The 2020 competition was disrupted heavily by the pandemic, and concluded with a 'Final Eight' tournament in Lisbon after it was forced to move away from Istanbul.
Since joining Real in 2009, the 33-year-old Frenchman has scored nearly 300 goals for the Madrid club.