David Beckham has issued a rallying cry to his Paris St. Germain teammates ahead of their UEFA Champions League series opener against Barcelona on Tuesday. Even though Beckham is unlikely to start the game, the Champions League veteran of 105 appearances insists that his team must not be afraid of what is probably the best team in the world.
"We're going to meet the challenge. We mustn't go out there thinking we're going to lose," Beckham said in an interview with beIN Sport. "They're perhaps the best team in the world, and[Lionel] Messi is the best player, but he's not out there on the pitch alone. We have to convince ourselves it's possible."
French publication L'Equipe pointed out on Monday that teams that play a 4-4-1-1 or a 4-4-2 (PSG’s preferred formation) against Barca usually lose. In nine matches against teams using those formations this season, Barca has won seven, losing only to Celtic in the Champions League last fall.
Nevertheless, Claude Makelele, PSG’s assistant coach, told Le Parisien that he is confident. "I don't see why we shouldn't be optimistic. In Europe, PSG plays attractive soccerl. And above all, against teams like Barcelona, we manage to up our game. I'm confident even if we're up against one of the best teams in the world. We're used to not having the ball and playing on the counter-attack. Their game might suit us. I believe we can hurt them."