Despite recent frustration, the former Paris Saint-Germain star has backed the team to taste European glory
Jay-Jay Okocha believes that for his former side Paris Saint-Germain, winning the Champions League is a matter of when, not if.
Despite heavy investment in recent years from the club’s Qatari ownership, PSG have not made it past the Champions League quarter-finals since they were knocked out at the semi-final stage in the 1994-95 edition.
Though PSG have been frustrated recently in Europe’s premier club competition – including back-to-back last-16 exits – Okocha believes that a Champions League trophy will eventually come to Paris.
“I have no doubt that [at] some point they will win the Champions League, [it] is [a] matter of when,” the Nigerian told Goal.
“You know because not just as a former player of PSG, I’m [a] big fan of the club too, and I also put pressure on the team to try and win the Champions League because that is the only thing I believe that the club is missing for now.
“I think they brought some players to help the younger [players] believe that is possible. And for me maybe that is the little thing that is missing: belief that they can do it.
“And once they win the first one, I think that won’t be that difficult again.”
If PSG are to win their first Champions League this season, they will have to get past last-16 opponents Manchester United without Neymar, who could miss the rest of the season with a foot injury.
Even without the Brazilian star, Okocha is confident that PSG can still get the job done against United.
“Well of course, as a fan I think I’d love to see Neymar play,” the 45-year-old said.
“But PSG have got a [lot of] great players and injury does happen sometimes, and we expect the others to do the job. So, I have no doubt that the other players will get the job done.”
Neymar’s time at PSG has been filled with rumours that he could be looking for a move away after initially joining the club in a world-record €222 million transfer in 2017.
Okocha isn’t too concerned with the gossip, though he does hope the 27-year-old will stay with the Ligue 1 champions for a long time.
“There always be rumours. That is also part of the game because it is a global game and a massive business,” Okocha said.
“When you have a lot of interest like that, there will be always speculation and rumours. So I don’t know what will happen in the future.
“I won’t decide for him, I won’t decide for the club, but as a PSG fan of course it will be great for us to [have] Neymar stay for a few more years.”
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