Rio Ferdinand has said that PSG cannot allow Lionel Messi, Neymar and Kylian Mbappe to shirk all defensive responsibilities if they are to win the “big trophies” this season.
The French giants were beaten 2-1 by Manchester City in their Champions League group game this week, despite their lead thanks to Mbappe.
The result means they won’t finish at the top of their group and will therefore face a potentially more difficult draw in the last 16.
Much has been said about Messi’s Paris debut, with the Argentine icon having only scored four goals for the club so far.
His ability to bond with PSG’s other two superstar strikers – Mbappe and Neymar – has also been heavily analyzed.
However, following the loss to Manchester, Ferdinand looked at the trio from a different perspective.
The Manchester United legend showed a passage of play in which City launched an attack on PSG.
Mauricio Pochettino’s defenders and midfielders have of course returned to their own half in an attempt to resolve the issue.
But none of his three attackers were visible.
Ferdinand pointed out that Messi, Neymar and Mbappe all retreated to the halfway line and stayed there rather than helping the defensive effort.
He said on BT Sport: “I’ve never, never in my life played a game where I’ve been one of those players here. [highlights defender], I have never played a game where I saw this and authorized that [all three attackers staying up front].
“The best teams don’t allow that to happen. As great as these three are – and listen, you can’t deny it, the talent that all three have.
“But to win the big trophies, you can’t allow that to happen.
“Whether you are a player or a manager, you have to make more demands on people than that.”
Michael Owen added: “That’s why I think PSG will not – and cannot win – the Champions League.
“People have been saying for years and years that PSG are going to win, I’ve never had them.
“Just look at this, how easy it is for Manchester City to come out.
“There is none – in these three players [Messi, Neymar and Mbappe] – there is no will to back down. It’s walking, it’s running …
“There is no effort, nothing to claw back and you can’t be outnumbered like that against big teams.”