PSG's Blanc hits back at Mourinho comments

PSG boss Laurent Blanc has hit back at Jose Mourinho's taunts by pointing at the Portuguese's history with Real Madrid.

Laurent Blanc

Mourinho, who won one Primera Division title in three seasons in Spain in a Barcelona-led duopoly, had suggested winning Ligue 1 is easy, stoking the fires ahead of his Chelsea side's Champions League quarter-final first leg at Parc des Princes on Wednesday night.

"Maybe if we're talking about the league and I'm sure that Jose Mourinho knows the French league very well," Blanc said.

"There are two really big clubs in Ligue 1 (PSG and Monaco), but if I remember correctly, I think it was the same for him in Spain, with Barcelona and Madrid.

"The only answer we want to give is to show a great performance tomorrow and we'd like to show that Ligue 1 has some very good teams and some very good players."

Big-spending PSG have not hidden their admiration for Chelsea's Eden Hazard and Oscar in the build up to the contest, while David Luiz has also been linked with a move across The Channel.

Hazard moved to Chelsea from Ligue 1 side Lille after the Blues' European Cup triumph in 2012 and is enjoying a stellar second season.

"In France we know Eden really well," added Blanc, who would not be drawn on a potential bid for the Belgium playmaker.

"We always thought he was very impressive in a one-vs-one situation and how fast he is on his feet and his movement.

"Since he got to Chelsea he has scored more and more goals, creates many dangerous opportunities and I've also noticed that when Chelsea is in a difficult period of the game, he has the freedom to go everywhere in trying to bring the team up.

"He's still very young, he has a lot of room for development and I foresee a very bright future."

Chelsea manager Mourinho, meanwhile, declined to replicate his memorable moment on the eve of a Champions League last 16 tie at Barcelona in February 2005 and list the two sides for the following day's match.

The Chelsea boss deferred to the UEFA interpreter on his right, suggesting he had guessed the visitors' line-up correctly and read out the first five names on the team-sheet.

"Petr Cech, (Branislav) Ivanovic, (John) Terry, (Gary) Cahill and (Cesar) Azpilicueta," said Mourinho, who opened his eve-of-match media conference by announcing Azpilicueta had become a father on Monday to a girl, Martina.

Asked to read further, Mourinho screwed up the piece of paper.

It was metaphoric, for all season Mourinho has bemoaned the quality of his strike-force.

Again, following last Saturday's loss at Crystal Palace, which saw him concede defeat in the Premier League title race, the Blues boss outlined his intention to overhaul his forward line this summer.

As if to illustrate Chelsea are comparative paupers to PSG's princes, Mourinho listed the men he considers to be the leading forwards in Europe, three of whom play for the Parisiens.

Mourinho, who insists the hosts are favourites, said: "It's a team full of fantastic strikers and goalscorers and that is what really makes the difference in this level.

"You look to the teams in the top eight at this moment, all of them good teams, good structures, with a certain philosophy, but after that you go and you see (Barcelona's Lionel) Messi, (Real Madrid's Cristiano) Ronaldo, (Borussia Dortmund's Robert) Lewandowski, Diego Costa, Ibrahimovic, (Edison) Cavani, (Ezequiel) Lavezzi.

"They (PSG) have lots of them. At this level it's a very important part of a team."



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