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Paris (AFP) – After several weeks of rumors, it’s finally official: the Portuguese defensive midfielder Renato Sanches (24) has signed up until 2027 with Paris SG, where he will find Christophe Galtier and Luis Campos, whom he had met several seasons in Lille.
The northern trio will therefore be recomposed in the capital where the 2016 European champion, capable of dazzling but often injured, will be eagerly awaited.
After having exploded at Benfica, his training club, in 2015-2016 and winning Euro-2016 at just 18 years old, the native of Lisbon was transferred to Bayern Munich for more than 35 million euros but did not never succeeded in establishing itself in Bavaria.
In the summer of 2019, he therefore accepted the challenge offered by Luis Campos and Gerard Lopez and landed in Lille to relaunch his career.
After a correct first season marked by injuries, he had greatly contributed to the unexpected title of champion of France won by the Mastiffs in May 2021 under the nose and beard … of PSG despite several muscular problems. And Galtier had given an explanation for these recurring injuries.
“he must relax”
“He is a very serious player, who works well. He loves the game, training, competition. He has such a desire that he is impatient. And sometimes he gets angry, he tenses up (.. .) He must relax to avoid being in tension, nervousness, which creates muscular incidents”, said the technician in January 2021.
“I live on my emotions. After two or three months without playing, it’s normal to be impatient, even stressed by such a long period of unavailability,” retorted the midfielder a few weeks later.
Sanches should have left Losc for Barça last summer, but a right knee meniscus injury requiring surgery derailed the transfer.
He therefore stayed one more year in the North where he had his most complete season and participated in Lille’s fine campaign in the Champions League. But once again, he missed several important meetings due to physical glitches.
Sanches, who can play in front of the defense or right winger, has a ‘box-to-box’ profile that Galtier really likes. On an acceleration, he is able to break the opposing lines and eliminate several players. “He is someone who understands the game very well, who analyzes his performances a lot”, explained the new Parisian technician in France Football at the end of 2020.
Manage the competition
The Lisboète also has a very good vision of the game and delivers millimeter passes for his attackers, which seems promising in view of the offensive power of PSG symbolized by Kylian Mbappé, Lionel Messi and Neymar. But he still has to progress in the finish, where he still sins too often.
In Paris, Sanches will also have to learn to manage the competition. Indisputable in Lille, he will not be at PSG where he will evolve in particular in the same register as the indestructible Marco Verratti and his young compatriot Vitinha, recruited at the end of June for more than 40 million euros.
“He tenses as soon as we talk about the fact that he is a starter or a substitute. It’s not stress. Rather annoyance (…) He would do well to consult someone who allows him to relax. relax. Even if it means doing a lot of work on himself,” said Galtier in L’Equipe last October.
To impose himself and hope to reach the heights, the Portuguese will have to gain in regularity. In Lille, he has never played more than 25 L1 matches per season. In the capital, he should be even more in demand with the infernal pace of PSG. Still, his body and his head will have to withstand all these demands…
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