Paris Saint-Germain splashed the cash once again this past summer, going bigger than they ever have before. The Parisians smashed the world record transfer fee with a massive £198 million move for Barcelona superstar Neymar. After losing out on the league title for the first time in five years, PSG raided champions Monaco for star man Kylian Mbappe, signing the striker on loan but with a £166 million obligation to buy.
It’s an unsurprising 5 star rating for PSG, with an 83 overall. That score is made up by 85 attack, 83 midfield and 83 defence stats.
With all of that cash being spent in the summer, PSG are now the overwhelming favourites to reclaim the Ligue 1 title off Monaco, but can they finally conquer Europe? With this much talent in their squad, it shouldn’t be a problem, so as you take charge in FIFA 18’s Career Mode, you know exactly what you need to accomplish.
Your challenge in the PSG line-up is to fit Edinson Cavani, Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Angel di Maria and Julian Draxler in the same side. For this reason you should use a 4-3-3 formation, but if you want more protection you can use a 4-2-3-1.
Alphonse Areola goes in between the sticks, trumping Kevin Trapp due to his fantastic 86 potential. Dani Alves is at right back, with Marquinhos, Thiago Silva and Layvin Kurzawa making up the rest of the back four.
Marco Verratti and Javier Pastore are the central midfield pairing with Julian Draxler in the number 10 role. Angel di Maria just edges out Kylian Mbappe on the right side, with superstar Neymar the undisputed choice on the left. Edinson Cavani is the marksman leading the line.
On the bench you should go for Kevin Trapp (OVR 80), Presnel Kimpembe (77), Thomas Meunier (83), Thiago Motta (81), Adrien Rabiot (81), Lucas Moura (82) and Kylian Mbappe (83).
With so much attacking talent, you will be looking to overthrow your opponents with PSG. This does leave you susceptible on the counter-attack, so be sure to adjust the instructions on one of your central midfielders. Go to your squad, select your team and go to the instructions tab. Select one of the CMs and make sure he stays back while attacking in the attacking support option.
With one of those midfielders hanging back, you will at least have some protection for your back four, so you can now concentrate on how you are going to unlock the opposition’s defence. Who ever you play out wide, they are going to have great pace and dribbling ability. You should look to play the ball over the top to messieurs Neymar, Mbappe or Di Maria, with central midfielders Marco Verratti (89 long passing) and Javier Pastore (86 vision) capable of threading passes. Your wide-men can then bear down on goal or look to play in striker Edinson Cavani.
Try to get the likes of Neymar and Di Maria one-on-one with the fullback and look to cut inside, with both players able to find the back of the net from the edge of the area. If you are still in need of a goal in the closing stages, throwing on the pacey Mbappe (90 sprint speed) and Lucas (92 sprint speed) from the bench could prove the difference.
If you don’t use training in Career Mode, you'll be missing out on a massive opportunity to improve your players, especially those who struggle to get minutes on the pitch. Make sure you use your high growth players to get the most reward from your training efforts. These include Kylian Mbappe, Adrien Rabiot, Marquinhos, Presnel Kimpembe, Layvin Kurzawa and Alphonse Areola.
The transfer market
Starting transfer budget: £125 million
Starting wage budget: £196,000
Who should go
With PSG already getting rid of Blaise Matuidi and Serge Aurier to make room in their budget for Neymar and Mbappe, there aren’t many more contenders that can leave the club. However, a lot of the young fringe players are not up to the standard and you can certainly allow eight of them to leave the club.
Romain Habran is worth the most, and the 23-year-old will collect you £350,000. The 66-rated right midfielder or winger only has a potential of 70, so selling him can free up his £14,000 a week wages.
It’s a similar tale for many other PSG youngsters, and you should sell Remy Descamps, Antoine Bernede, Yohan Demoncy, Timothy Weah, Colin Dagba and Azzedine Toufiqui. You should receive about £2 million for all six of them combined, with their total wages coming close to £40,000 a week.
After all those sales, you will be down to just 24 players so you won’t want to lose any more. The only player you should think about sending out on loan for the season is the talented defensive midfielder Lorenzo Callegari. The 19-year-old is rated at 64 with the potential to reach 81, so send the Frenchman out on loan to a three star club for the season.
Who to sign
Transfer budget after suggested sales: £127 million
Wage budget after suggested sales: £241,000
With no conventional holding midfielder at the club, you will have your hands full when your opponent is on the counter-attack. With a massive budget, no defensive midfielder is off limits, and you should look to sign Real Madrid’s Casemiro. The 25-year-old has a hefty £78.5 million release clause, but with an 84 rating and 89 potential, the Brazilian is just about worth it. His high defensive work rate will ensure that he sniffs out any danger when the opposition breaks. His current wages will set you back £172,000 a week, which is acceptable for his 87 standing tackle, 87 aggression and 87 jumping.
- N’Golo Kante – Chelsea, Age 26, OVR 87, POT 90, Cost: £88.9m, Wage: £167k
- Bruno – Villarreal, Age 33, OVR 84, POT 84, Cost: £34.2m, Wage: £52k
- Danilo Pereira – Porto, Age, OVR 83, POT 86, Cost: £50.2m, Wage: £16k
- Idrissa Gueye – Everton, Age 27, OVR 83, POT 84, Cost: £42.6m, Wage: £101k
- Victor Wanyama – Tottenham, Age 26, OVR 82, POT 85, Cost: £40m, Wage: £87k
With just three senior centre backs, you could get in hot water if Thiago Silva, Marquinhos or Presnel Kimpembe get injured. Another promising centre half would put these worries to bed, so look to bring in the talented Matthijs de Ligt from Ajax. Aged just 17, the Dutch international is rated at 76, with the potential to hit 89. 83 shot power, 83 strength and 80 jumping are superb stats, and they can be yours for just £20.5 million. His £6,000 weekly wage is bound to increase, but you must act fast to get in for De Ligt first.
- Malang Sarr – Nice, Age 18, OVR 75, POT 88, Cost: £23.3m, Wage: £13k
- Issa Diop – Toulouse, Age 20, OVR 76, POT 88, Cost: £23.2m, Wage: £20k
- John Stones – Manchester City, Age 23, OVR 79, POT 85, Cost: £26.2m, Wage: £92k
- Yeray – Athletic Bilbao, Age 22, OVR 78, POT 84, Cost: £24.3m, Wage: £18k
- Joris Gnagnon – Stade Rennais, Age 20, OVR 76, POT 84, Cost: £19.4m, Wage: £17k
The big news is that Kylian Mbappe’s permanent move to Paris Saint-Germain next summer does not happen in FIFA 18 Career Mode. If you want to sign him, he will cost around the £100 million mark in July 2018, so bear that in mind with any other transfer business you conduct.
It took us a £90 million bid and 25% sell-on clause to claim Mbappe on a permanent deal from Monaco
As for player contracts, five have deals expiring at the end of the season and it's unclear whether you should renew. Thiago Motta is currently the only defensive midfielder at the club, but at the age of 34, his level will drop rapidly this season, so you should let him go next summer.
Hatem Ben Arfa does find himself behind Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Julian Draxler and Lucas, but you can’t let a player of his quality leave on a free. Either sell him straight away or renew his contract and sell him next summer.
Christopher Nkunku and Lorenzo Callegari are the two premier youngsters at the club, so you will want to give them fresh contracts and keep them at the club for many years to come. As for Romain Habran, you should sell the 23-year-old straight away with his potential only at 70.
After all this spending, there are now no more excuses for PSG. They simply have to perform on the European stage, and missing out on a league title cannot happen again. For that reason, both your domestic and continental success objectives have critical importance. You will need to win Ligue 1 and Coupe Nationale on a domestic level, and reach the Champions Cup final in Europe. You will also need to win the competition within the next three seasons.
Brand exposure is also critical, for which you will need to gain £176 million through shirt sales. This can be achieved by bringing in big names,as well as scoring plenty of goals. That shouldn’t be a problem with this PSG side.
Youth development is the only other objective you need to complete, and even that only has a low priority. To complete this you will need to grow a youth academy player by five overall points and play them in five matches over the season. Get your youth staff set up early to help you out on this.
Next stop – superclub status
The only thing stopping PSG from being held in the same regard as Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich is competition on a European level. The board sacked former coach Laurent Blanc as the club failed to challenge in Europe, bringing in three-time successive Europa League winning manager Unai Emery to replace him. With that move not going to plan as Monaco ran away with the title, there is a perfect opportunity for you to take over at the Parc des Princes and target European glory.
Full PSG squad player ratings
|Thomas Meunier||25||RB RM||Belgium||81||84||£31.3m||£68k|
|Marco Verratti||24||CM CDM||Italy||87||90||£106.7m||£114k|
|Javier Pastore||28||CM LW RW||Argentina||83||83||£41.5m||£88k|
|Adrien Rabiot||22||CM CDM||France||81||86||£39.8m||£68k|
|Hatem Ben Arfa||30||CAM ST||France||81||81||£27.7m||£78k|
|Giovani Lo Celso||21||CAM CM||Argentina||74||86||£18m||£43k|
|Christopher Nkunku||19||CM LW||France||71||81||£6.6m||£22k|
|Romain Habran||23||RM RW||France||66||70||£1.4m||£14k|
|Julian Draxler||23||LW CAM LM||Germany||84||87||£49.7m||£128k|
|Angel di Maria||29||RW LW||Argentina||84||84||£49.7m||£128k|
|Kylian Mbappe||18||ST RW||France||83||94||n/a||£27k|
|Timothy Weah||17||ST||USA||63||71||£500k||£5k |
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