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Best PSG XI of All Time

Tue 16 March 2021 | 6:30

Let’s take a look at the history of this great club and comprise a list of the best PSG XI of all time:

PSG football club may have only been founded in 1970 but the wealth of talented players that this great club has seen is unmatched in France. PSG was founded in 1970 when two clubs Paris FC and Stade Saint-Germain merged together to make up PSG. The won their first league title in 1986 with players like Safet Susic and before their recent dominance over Ligue 1, their most successful period was the 1990s, when the club won 9 trophies with the help of players like Rai and David Ginola.

Even before their recent dominance in Ligue 1, PSG was always home to some of football’s greatest ever players like Ronaldinho, Jay-Jay Okocha and George Weah but since 2011, when the Qatari based QSI group took over the club and became the owners, PSG has seen some of the world’s greatest players don its colors. So we have decided to review the history of this great club and pick its great players to make up the

best PSG XI of all time

as best as we can, so here they are:

PSG All-Time Greatest XI

With PSG’s 7 Ligue 1 titles in the past decade, it’s easy to pick the whole PSG all-time greatest XI from this past decade but we have tried to include players from different eras of the club as it would’ve been a disservice to both those players and the PSG itself. So let’s see who is on this list:

Goalkeeper: Bernard Lama

We start our list with the great Bernard Lama as our chosen goalkeeper in the

PSG greatest XI of all time

. Lama narrowly beat his predecessor, Joel Bats, to be on this list but the Frenchman totally deserves the nod. Having started his career at Lille, Lama was already a Ligue 1 veteran when he joined PSG in 1992, having played over 200

Ligue 1

games by that point.

Lama replaced the legendary Joel Bats and immediately made an impact. With Lama between the posts and players like Rai, Weah and Ginola, PSG went on to experience their most successful period yet. Lama won the Coupe de France on his debut season with PSG and won the Ligue 1 the following season but perhaps his biggest achievement with the club was their first European trophy, Cup Winners’ Cup in 1996.

Lama had a falling out with PSG just before the World Cup but a loan transfer to

West Ham

in January of 1998 and his great performances there saved his chances with the French national team and so he won the World Cup with France. After that he came back to PSG and stayed there until the summer of 2000 when he won the Euro with France before departing from PSG. With 1 Ligue 1 title, 2 Coupe de France and a Cup Winners’ Cup as well as his immense success with the French national team, Bernard Lama certainly has a place in best PSG XI of all time.

Left Back: Maxwell

The first of several Brazilian players amongst

Paris Saint-Germain best ever XI

is Maxwell. Part of a great generation of Ajax players that had the likes of Zlatan, Chivu and van der Vaart, Maxwell was a great example of a modern full back, as he operated like a winger in attack as well as being great defensively. Having played at

Cruzeiro

,

Ajax

, Inter Milan and Barcelona prior to his transfer with PSG, Maxwell has become one of the most decorated Brazilian players of all time.

A great friend of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, with whom he played with at Ajax, Inter and Barcelona, Maxwell joined PSG in the January of 2012 and was part of a wave of great players that took PSG to new heights. Operationg from the left back position, Maxwell’s elegance on the ball as well as his calmness led to him providing PSG attack with many opportunities as well as making few defensive mistakes. He was awarded with 3 Ligue 1 Team of the Year appearances in his 5 and half years at PSG.

Maxwell, who had practically won everything in European football including the Champions League, helped PSG gain prominence in Ligue 1 and won an incredible 11 major trophies with them including 4 Ligue 1, 4 Coupe de la Ligue and 3 Coupe de France titles. Although he is quite the underrated player, he will certainly go down as one of Ligue 1’s greatest players and totally deserving of his spot on the best PSG XI of all time.

Right Back: Marquinhos

PSG’s current captain is the next Brazilian on our list of

PSG best 11 of all time

. Although Marquinhos can operate in various roles in defense as well as being able to play a sweeper or defensive midfielder, we have included him here as a right back. Marquinhos is one of those few players who developed quite rapidly. He made his professional debut in 2012 and by summer of 2013 had already played a full season with

AS Roma

and had joined PSG.

From then on Marquinhos has gone from strength to strength, till now that he is PSG’s captain at only 26 years of age. Being already a talented young player with both great defensive attributes as well as being comfortable with the ball at his feet, Marquinhos benefitted massively from playing alongside David Luiz and especially Thiago Silva, two of his countrymen who played the same position as Marquinhos himself.

Apart from that Marquinhos’ intelligence in reading the game is exceptional which makes him a great leader, even before Thiago Silva’s departure last summer. Marquinhos has already won 6 Ligue 1 titles as well as 6 Coupe de la Ligue and 5 Coupe de France trophies in his previous 7 seasons with the club. His performances and goals were vital to

PSG

’s Champions League run last season.

however, they were defeated in the final. They are the competitions favorites again and we’ll have to see if

Marquinhos

manages to lead PSG to their first ever Champions League title?! We’ll have to find out but for now Marquinhos gets to be in our best PSG XI of all time.

Center Back: Thiago Silva

A real contender for the best PSG player of all time and one of the most decorated players in Ligue 1 is PSG’s former captain and defender extraordinaire, Thiago Silva. The Brazilian defender gained prominence at Fluminense but it was at

AC Milan

that he became known as one of the best defenders of his generation, playing alongside the legendary Alessandro Nesta. He then proved himself to be a real world class player as he became a pillar of PSG in all of the 7 Ligue 1 titles they have won in the past decade.

Thiago Silva joined PSG at the start of the 2012-13 season for a reported €42 million transfer fee, which was at that time 2nd highest transfer fee ever paid for a defender. He quickly proved he was worth that amount of money by helping PSG win the Ligue 1 in 4 consecutive seasons starting with Silva’s debut season. his ease on the ball and the way he controlled matches with his calm demeanor at the heart of defense, brought a much needed stability to PSG’s defense which helped them immense in their domination of Ligue 1.

In 2019-20 season, Thiago Silva finally led PSG to their first ever Champions League final, however they were narrowly defeated by Bayern Munich despite Silva’s great performance in the final. He then left the club to join Chelsea on a free transfer having won a record 7 Ligue 1 titles as well as 6 Coupes de la Ligue and five Coupes de France trophies in the 315 games he played for PSG. He should certainly be a part of any best PSG XI of all time as he is here!

Center Back: Jean-Marc Pilorget

Jean-Marc Pilorget holds the record of most appearances for PSG with 435 appearances during his 14-year spell with PSG. Having joined the newly promoted PSG in 1975, Pilorget went on to play for them up until the start of the 90s. you could say he was the man that was with PSG from the start and experienced their first era of success during the 80s.

Pilorget was a great tackler of the ball who could anticipate oppositions movements very well and time his tackles and interceptions almost perfectly. His height of powers was during the 80s, particularly the 1985-86 season, where he and PSG goalkeeper Joel Bats appeared in every match as PSG won their first ever league title.

Perhaps Pilorget’s contribution to PSG, especially in the 80s, gets overshadowed by players like Susic and Hernandez but without him, leading at the heart of defense, PSG couldn’t have experienced such success. That alongside his longevity of playing 435 games, scoring 17 goals and providing 20 assists, makes Pilorget a perfect candidate to appear on our list of best PSG XI of all time.

Midfielder: Marco Verratti

The most decorated player in Ligue 1 history, alongside Thiago Silva, is the Italian midfield maestro and one of the members of

PSG all-time greatest XI

,

Marco Verratti

. Having joined PSG in 2012 from the Serie B side Pescara, whom he had just helped win a promotion to Serie A, Verratti soon became a player that many European clubs wished they had snatched up before PSG.

Operating as a Regista, Verratti’s ability to read the game to such great details as well as his immense technical abilities and his deft touch, has led to him becoming one of the best deep-lying playmakers that are around today. Perhaps his only weakness would be the amount of time he had spent at the sidelines because of many injuries that he has seemed to pick up almost every year.

With 7 Ligue 1 titles, Marco Verratti is one of the players that have won the competition more than any other player. He has additionally won 5 Coupe de France and 6 Coupe de la Ligue as well as being runners-up in 2019-20 Champions League season. with 50 assists and 9 goals in 338 games, Marco Verratti is our choice of central midfielder for our best PSG XI of all time.

Midfielder: Rai

The last Brazilian to appear on our list of PSG Best XI of all time is the amazing Rai who was part of a great PSG side that won several major trophies in the 90s, most of which Rai played a big role in. the younger brother of the Brazilian legend Socrates, Rai made a name for himself at Sao Paolo before joining PSG in the 1993. There was a lot expected of him when he arrived and he delivered that in droves in the 5 seasons he spent with the Parisian side.

Rai was a skillful playmaker that was the link between the attack and the defense of Luiz Hernandez’ PSG team. He was also a great big-game player as he often delivered when PSG needed him the most. He scored a brace against Parma in the return fixture of 1996 Cup Winners’ Cup as PSG won their first ever European title as well as scoring in 3 separate cup finals, all of which PSG won.

Besides his first season with PSG, Rai managed to score double figures in all of the seasons he spent at PSG, scoring 74 goals as well as delivering 30 assists. He managed to win a Ligue 1 title,2 Coupe de France and 2 Coupe de la Ligue as well as the aforementioned Cup Winners’ Cup. He also won the 1994 World Cup with Brazil during his time with PSG, which makes his inclusion on the

best PSG XI of all time all

the more justified.

Midfielder: Safet Susic

The man that played a vital role in PSG winning their first ever Ligue 1 title, certainly deserves to be amongst the

PSG Best XI of all time

. Not only that, Safet Susic is also PSG’s all-time leading assist provider with 103 assists, which tells you of his qualities as a playmaker and a midfielder. Zlatan may be the player that changed PSG’s fortunes but it was Safet Susic and his teammates like Luis Hernandez that established PSG as a title winning club and delivered PSG’s first ever piece of silverware and league title.

Considered to be one of the finest European players of his generation, Safet Susic operated mainly as a playmaker and occasionally as a second striker at both PSG and Yugoslavia national team. Having established himself at

Sarajevo

, Susic came to Paris in 1982 and he helped PSG win their first ever silverware, a Coupe de la Ligue, in his first season. his 4 goals in the semi-final and final was vital to PSG’s victory. with Susic’s help, PSG also won their first ever league title in 1985-86 season.

As well as delivering PSG’s first two trophies, Susic managed to score 85 goals and provide 103 assists in 344 games and becoming one of the best PSG players of all time. In 2010 he was named as PSG best foreign player of all time, a title that may be challenged now. One thing is for certain and that is the fact that the man who delivered the first PSG title very well deserves to be on our best PSG XI of all time.

Right Winger: George Weah

The only African player to ever win the Ballon d’Or and Liberia’s current president was as much a PSG legend as he was a Monaco legend. After a relative successful 4-year period with

Monaco

, George Weah decided to join PSG in 1992 and became a part of the great PSG side of the 90s, although his time with the club was rather shorter.

But even in the short time he stayed with PSG, Weah managed to make an impact, helping PSG win their 2nd ever Ligue 1 title in his second season with the club. The great Thierry Henry has credited Weah, alongside Romario and Ronaldo, as one of the first players that changed the way a striker should play. Physically strong and quick as well as being a more than adequate dribbler of the ball, Weah was known for his solo goals that saw him ran almost half the length of a football field before delivering the final shot.

In some ways Weah’s final season at PSG could be considered his best season at the club as he helped PSG reach the semi-finals of the 1994-95 Champions League season as well as becoming the competition’s top scorer. Later that year he won the Ballon d’Or although by then he was at AC Milan. Weah scored 55 goals in 138 games during his three seasons with PSG and won 4 trophies (3 Cup trophies and a league title) and he deservedly gets the nod to be in our Paris Saint-Germain best ever XI.

Left Winger: Edinson Cavani

Tarzan might be notoriously hard to work with but the Uruguayan was unbelievably good in front of the goal. Even though for much of his time with PSG, he was in Zlatan’s shadow but he surpassed the Swede and became PSG’s all-time leading goal scorer, a title which will not be taken from him anytime soon. Coming from a highly successful spells at Palermo and

Napoli

, Edinson Cavani joined PSG in 2013 and became an integral part of a PSG team that won 6 league titles in the 7 seasons he stayed with them.

Although the first few seasons of Cavani’s time at PSG was spent sharing the spotlight with Zlatan Ibrahimovic, as the two always were competing to get goals, after Zlatan’s departure Cavani really came into his own and showed how lethal he was in front of the goal, winning Ligue 1’s top scorer award twice between 2016 and 2018 and becoming the Ligue 1’s Player of the Year in 2016-17 season.

Cavani

’s personal best season was the 2016-17 season, where he scored an incredible 49 goals in 50 matches. He broke Zlatan’s record of 157 goals for PSG the following season and has since been the club’s leading goal scorer of all time. He left the club last summer to join Manchester United having won six Ligue 1 titles, five Coupes de la Ligue and four Coupes de France with PSG. With 200 goals in 301 games for PSG, Cavani’s inclusion in the

 best PSG XI of all time

 is an absolute must!

Striker: Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Perhaps QSI’s acquirement of PSG back in 2011 was the turning point in PSG’s history but that turning point was realized on the pitch when Zlatan Ibrahimovic actually joined PSG in 2012. The Swede, who is the last player in our

all-time greatest XI of Paris Saint-Germain

, transformed PSG into a team to be feared, not only domestically but at the European stage as well and he did all of this by constantly scoring goals, season after season.

Having played for clubs like Ajax, Juventus, Inter, Barcelona and AC Milan,

Zlatan

had won almost everything there was to win when he decided to join PSG in 2012, at the age of 31. Many believed his move to PSG to be a sort of retirement plan but here we are almost a decade later and Zlatan is still scoring non-stop!

As expected Zlatan wasted no time and scored 30 league goals in his first season at PSG, delivering PSG’s much awaited 3rd league title. He went on to win the title with PSG 3 more time consecutively, winning a league title every of the 4 seasons he spent at the club. He was also named Ligue 1’s Player of the Year 3 times in those 4 seasons as well as winning the top scorer award 3 times as well. With 156 goals and 53 assists in 180 games for PSG, Zlatan has an unbelievable record of 1.16 direct goal involvement per game.

He has won 4 Ligue 1, Coupe de la Ligue and 2 Coupe de France trophies as well as numerous other personal achievements during his 4-year spell with PSG and judging by the way his career continued, he could’ve scored at least another 100 if he stayed with PSG till now. He is considered by many to be PSG best player of all time and rightfully so, not just because of his impressive numbers but rather because of the impact he had at the club which makes the decision to include him in the best PSG XI of all time a no brainer.

 

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