ANOTHER failed target! PSG could pay a heavy price for missing out on Thomas Tuchel

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Thomas Tuchel PSG
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Bayern Munich hired Thomas Tuchel on Friday, taking PSG's preferred managerial target off the market ahead of a summer of change for the Ligue 1 side.

A month ago, with PSG trailing 3-1 to Monaco in Ligue 1, technical advisor Luis Campos stormed into the dressing room and berated the team.

His rant drew the ire of manager Christophe Galtier, further fracturing a relationship that stood on precarious ground. It was just one of many incidents that suggest that Galtier's days in Paris are numbered.

The Frenchman has botched the job he was brought in to do. PSG have been eliminated from the domestic and European cups. They have lost, in total, seven games so far this calendar year after only dropping four all of last season.

And, perhaps tellingly, club sources have been non-committal about Galtier's future. While they guarantee he will not be sacked now, there is little reason to suggest that he will be at the club beyond June. At this point, then, the relationship is beyond repair.

That all looked fine, perhaps even sensible, prior to Thursday evening. Sacking a manager is risky, and, despite all of Galtier's faults, he can boast about PSG being likely to finish with yet another Ligue 1 title win in the bag.

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But then, out of nowhere, Bayern Munich hired Thomas Tuchel. In a moment, PSG's reported top target was gone.

By dragging their feet, they have been made to pay. PSG have waited, delayed the probable, pushed back the inevitable. They stuck with Galtier, while their ideal candidate sat waiting.

And now they face a far weaker job market this summer - when they will inevitably be bringing in a new manager.

In the 24 hours since Tuchel's hiring, a litany of reports have come out detailing the disappointment inside the Paris camp that their top summer target is off the market.

It is yet another dysfunctional moment at a club marred by poor decisions.

  1. Campos fails to make his move
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    Campos fails to make his move

    It wasn't supposed to be like this under Campos. The former Monaco sporting director was brought in for his club-building nous. While he is supposedly in place as a "football advisor", it is little secret that he holds the weight of football-making decisions at Parc des Princes.

    PSG hired him, then, to make the tricky calls. Campos knows Ligue 1 and his involvement with Celta Vigo gives him a rich knowledge of the European footballing landscape. He, of all people, should know when it is the right time to make a move. And he should know exactly how to execute it, too.

    Campos has made huge calls before. He elected to sell Kylian Mbappe to PSG and Bernardo Silva to Manchester City while at Monaco. He did the same at Lille, flogging Nicolas Pepe to Arsenal for a massive fee. His record for talent identification is even more impressive, spotting and developing names such as Fabinho, James Rodriguez and Anthony Martial.

    It was never realistic to ask Campos to work the same magic at PSG; the club craves stars and big signings. There are no diamonds to unearth when you're at the top. But this is a sporting advisor who knows football and should be able to see when a situation is going downhill - especially when the ideal replacement is available.

  2. Tuchel wasn't ready before - he is now

    Tuchel wasn't ready before - he is now

    Whether it is Campos or owner Nasser Al-Khelaifi who is truly at fault, someone should have seen it was time to make a decision.

    PSG have long needed a personality in the dressing room. Yes, big clubs need smart tacticians and progressive ideas - and that's what they'd gone for in Galtier and Mauricio Pochettino.

    But perhaps more than anything, this PSG side need a manager that commands respect. They flirted with that strategy when Carlo Ancelotti was at the helm, but he bolted for another job before the project really took off.

    A glance at managers in recent years suggests much of the same. Unai Emery is not a man to lead egos. Tuchel, during his first stint at the club from 2018-2020, wasn't ready to deal with the likes of Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.

    Pochettino, meanwhile, for all of his success rebuilding Tottenham, had never dealt with a dressing room that had any significant power.

    PSG require a very specific criteria for their new boss. Managers that are tactically clever, with a winning pedigree and infectious charisma - they're not easy to find.

    But the new Bayern boss was one of them. This new, grown-up Tuchel, a more advanced edition than the one that left Paris in 2020, fit the bill. And PSG have let him fly by.

  3. Who will be next?

    Who will be next?

    So who to turn to next? The manager market is inherently unpredictable, but the top-level bosses that PSG require are all unattainable - no matter how much money the Parisians have.

    Zinedine Zidane seems the obvious choice. The Frenchman has been waiting around, presumably for either the France or PSG job, for some time now. Still, is it too risky to hire someone who has been out of a job for two years? And did he do enough at Real Madrid to suggest that he can work his magic at another club - one that he has less of a connection to?

    Perhaps Julian Nagelsmann could work; but the reported crumbling of his relationship with the higher-ups and dressing room at Bayern doesn't exactly inspire confidence. Otherwise, the list is thin.

    PSG, then, will find themselves searching from an ultimately undesirable list of candidates, looking for an imperfect manager to take on a flawed position.

  4. A summer of change

    A summer of change

    This all couldn't have happened at a worse time, with PSG facing rampant uncertainty over the next few months. Messi and Mbappe could both depart, while Sergio Ramos is almost certain to leave.

    Whoever comes in, then, will face a rebuild. This is hardly a novel concept. PSG seem to have some sort of existential crisis every summer. They now face the reality of having an odd mixture of old and new. Messi is ageless, but others are not. There are calls, once again, to revitalise the squad with a slew of young talent.

    They can certainly afford it. They could, in theory, pick the best young French talent from across Europe and plug them into their XI. That's essentially what Thierry Henry thinks they should do.

    Still, it is difficult to imagine them assuming that sort of strategy, sacrificing some of their star power, and abandoning their according revenue stream, in the name of being competitive in three to four years.

    Perhaps it is easier to sell a manager on flexibility; it is partially why Galtier took the job. If that is the case, and the club are willing to be patient, the options open up.

    But they've missed their chance to pounce with Tuchel.

    Instead, this will all be quite predictable. PSG will throw money at Messi, will likely keep Mbappe for one more year, and rely on a half-fit Neymar. They will make another big-name signing to add to an imperfect squad. And once again, they will ask the wrong manager to lead it all. Meanwhile, their dream target is working his magic elsewhere.

    Some things are just inevitable.