FIFA 17: Paris Saint-Germain Career Mode guide

After four Champions League quarter-finals in a row, can you be the man to deliver European glory to PSG on FIFA 17?

Alastair Pusinelli by Alastair Pusinelli

Only founded in 1970, massive credit must go to the powers that be at Paris Saint-Germain for turning them into one of the finest clubs in Europe. Obviously, it helps when Qatari money is pumped in, but that should take nothing away from the four Ligue 1 titles they’ve won on the trot. After dominating the French league, their target is now to succeed in Europe, shown by the sacking of Laurent Blanc despite three league titles in as many years. The reaction has been to appoint Unai Emery, who has won three Europa League titles in a row, in the hope that he can take that form into Europe. So far it has been a little shaky, with PSG currently third in Ligue 1 and finishing second behind Arsenal in their Champions League group.

Can you be the man to change their European fortunes? The Parisians have reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League four times in a row, but have only surpassed that stage once, which came back in 1995. On FIFA 17’s Career Mode you have a brilliant opportunity to achieve something special with the French club, as they close the gap between them and the other European superpowers.


How you should line-up

The starting line-up is not as clear cut at PSG than at other sides, but you should stick to the 4-3-3 formation that they have used for many past seasons.

There is plenty of competition right from the off between Kevin Trapp and Alphonse Areola for the goalkeeping spot. Trapp wins the battle for now, but Areola will go on and win the war with his incredible potential of 89. The back four picks itself but it’s still the weakest department of the PSG side, but all four defenders have potentials of 88 or higher. Serge Aurier, Marquinhos, Thiago Silva and Layvin Kurzawa are the four that will still be tough for any attack to break down.

In midfield, you should opt for Blaise Matuidi, Marco Verratti and Javier Pastore, but you could pick the more defence-minded Grzegorz Krychowiak. There’s more competition out wide, with Angel di Maria and Hatem Ben Arfa as your first choice, but Lucas or Pastore come into contention on the left wing.

With Zlatan Ibrahimovic leaving for Manchester United, Edinson Cavani can finally lead the line as the only established out-and-out striker at the club.

On the bench, you should go for Alphonse Areola, Presnel Kimpembe, Maxwell, Grzegorz Krychowiak, Thiago Motta, Lucas and Jese Rodriguez.

The Transfer Market

Starting transfer budget: £93 million

Starting wage budget: £181,000

Who should go

The first team squad at Paris Saint-Germain is near exceptional, so no recognisable names need to be leaving the Parc des Princes. Remy Descamps, Antoine Bernede, Yohan Demoncy and Fode Ballo Toure all have potentials of 75 or lower, and for that reason do not have a future with the French champions. For all four of them, you should look to receive just short of £1.5 million in total.

What the team needs

If you have a perfect pre-season, you are going to have over £100 million to spend. You have to be careful not to waste your money, as PSG have some top players coming through, and in the long run, you could stifle their growth by bringing in world class players.

With just three centre-backs at the club, you need to bring another one in, but with Marquinhos and Presnel Kimpembe having superb potentials of 88 and 85 respectively, you must pick wisely. The 82-rated Marquinhos will be world class in less than two seasons, so you only need your new defender to last you two seasons which means they don’t have to cost a fortune. For that reason, Real Madrid’s Pepe should be top of your list, as he only has one year remaining on his contract. The 33-year-old Portuguese is rated at 88 and will only set you back around £26 million. He has 94 aggression, 89 sliding tackles and 88 interceptions in the game, with his wages of £72,000 per week he’s very affordable for a player of his quality.


–       Andrea Barzagli – Juventus, Age 35, OVR 86, POT 86, Cost: £10 million, Wage: £58,000

–       Laurent Koscielny – Arsenal, Age 30, OVR 85, POT 85, Cost: £22 million, Wage: £72,000

–       Giorgio Chiellini – Juventus, Age 31, OVR 88, POT 88, Cost: £42 million, Wage: £101,000

–       Sergio Ramos – Real Madrid, Age 30, OVR 89, POT 89, Cost: £70 million, Wage: £115,000

–       Diego Godin – Atletico Madrid, Age 30, OVR 88, POT 88, Cost: £60 million, Wage: £94,000

–       Leonardo Bonucci – Juventus, Age 29, OVR 87, POT 87, Cost: £50 million, Wage: £86,000

It’s a similar story at left-back with Layvin Kurzawa having a potential of 88, but with a starting overall of 81, he’s the weakest player in the squad. There are very few replacements that can come in for one or two seasons, but if you do decide to take on a left-back, look at Atletico Madrid’s Filipe Luis. The 85-rated Brazilian has 91 stamina, 86 sliding tackles and 85 marking, which will cost you about £36 million. The 30-year-old’s weekly wages of £72,000 shouldn’t be a problem for a club like PSG.


–       Marcelo – Real Madrid, Age 28, OVR 86, POT 86, Cost: £55 million, Wage: £115,000

–       Cesar Azpilicueta – Chelsea, Age 26, OVR 84, POT 84, Cost: £35 million, Wage: £86,000


With a 31-man squad, you can certainly afford to add to the seven players out on loan at the moment. Hervin Ongenda, Christopher Nkunku, Jonathan Ikone and Alec Georgen all have ratings in the 60s and are not quite good enough to make the first team. But they all have potentials of 78 or higher, so a loan move would be ideal for them as they are still a year or two away from regular first team action.


Three PSG players have contracts running out at the end of the season, but you could easily choose not to renew any of them. Thiago Motta may be rated at 82, but now at the age of 33, you may want to see how his level goes over the season. 21-year-old Adrien Rabiot is hot on his heels, and in a year’s time, the Frenchman will have surpassed his older teammate.

Left-back Maxwell is now 34, so his 79 rating will drop dramatically throughout the season. If you bring in a new left-back, you will probably want to sell Maxwell, so there is no need to give him a new deal.

Finally, we have 21-year-old left winger Hervin Ongenda. You should send him out on loan, but be sure to keep an eye on his progress. With so many wingers at the club (Di Maria, Ben Arfa, Lucas, Jese) he will need to develop quickly to be in with a chance of first team minutes. If he gets to 72 in the first season, you should give him a new contract.


Managerial Objectives

There’s no doubting that PSG are an ambitious club, and that is shown by the managerial objectives set for you. Of the utmost priority is domestic and continental success. As you would expect, Les Rouge-et-Bleu will be the strong favourites for the Ligue 1 title and the Coupe de France, so you will be asked to lift those two trophies at the end of the season. As for Europe, you will be asked to put on a strong showing in the ‘Champions Cup’ and reach the final. You will also have the long-term goal of winning the competition within three seasons.

Just as important for PSG is brand exposure. If they wish to become European heavyweights, they need to match the off-the-field calibre of Manchester United, Barcelona and Real Madrid. In your first season you will need to sell well over £100 million’s worth of shirts, and within three seasons have won around £150 million in prize money.

Not known for bringing through youth players, but with the likes of Alphonse Areola, Adrien Rabiot and Presnel Kimpembe bursting onto the scene over the past season and a half, it looks as if times are changing in the French capital. You will need to sign two players under the age of 20, who have a higher potential than the average of the players in the same position. For example, if you were to sign a young left-back, they would need to have a potential higher than 80, so Celtic’s Kieran Tierney would be your best bet. Not only that, but you will need to bring a player through the youth academy, give them game time and grow them by five overall points.

As you would expect with PSG, they have no financial objectives, so spend, spend, spend!

Time to hit that next level

As we’ve already mentioned, a European crown is the end goal for Paris Saint-Germain. This is achievable with the squad they currently have and with 17 players holding a potential of 84 or higher, it’s inevitable they will get there at some stage. This season, the ‘Champions Cup’ may just be beyond them, but next season you may be looking to bring in a new striker, with money being almost no object, and once you’ve done that you could even be European favourites.

In your opening season, your only challenge, to begin with, will be juggling the competitions, something new manager Unai Emery has struggled with. If you win your first ten games of the season, easier said than done but very doable in France, then the league should take care of itself for the remainder of the season. Come the new year, you should only have the ‘Champions Cup’ and Coupe de France to worry about, and if you have a ten-point plus lead in the league, a treble could be achieved. That said, the semi-finals in Europe is perhaps a more realistic goal for the French champions, as you would still need to beat at least one fully fledged contender on that run. But if you get a fortunate draw, you may have eyes on the final, or more. Slow and steady wins the race, but with a fantastic squad and financial backing, PSG are now ready for European glory.

Know any other tips? Let us know in the comments.

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Alastair Pusinelli

First console: GameBoy Color / Favourite Game: Assassin's Creed 2 / Currently playing: Football Manager 2020