Thiago Silva has identified the reason he is enjoying playing in the Champions League at Chelsea than during his stint at PSG.
According to the Brazilian, Chelsea’s previous success in the Champions League makes it more enjoyable to play for the Blues in the competition compared to his time at Paris Saint-Germain.
For Qatar Sports Investments, the organisation that owns Paris Saint-Germain, according to football.london, the all-important prize was the Champions League. And it’s one that the club haven’t been able to secure.
And when asked during an interview in the March edition of FourFourTwo whether Silva enjoyed playing in the tournament away from the colossal pressure at PSG, he gave an honest response.
“I believe so, yes. At PSG, the pressure to win a first Champions League [under QSI] is immense. The team works around this objective, not to win Ligue 1.
“It’s no use doing a clean sweep of the domestic titles, as we did a few times, but being knocked out in the last 16 or the last eight of Europe.
“It always seemed like if that happened, the whole season was s**t – it felt over once we exited the Champions League.
“At Chelsea, however, there’s a very different atmosphere regarding European football. The club has already managed to lift that trophy, and winning the Premier League title is also one of our priorities.”
And, when the German coach was asked ahead of tomorrow night’s Round of 16 first leg against Atletico Madrid whether he agreed with the Brazilian’s assertion that there was less pressure on Chelsea in the Champions League.
He replied: “I understand why Thiago as a player feels like this. For me as a coach, I never felt like this. In Paris, a lot of judgement is made on the Champions League. Everyone expects you to be domestic champion and win all the cup competitions, so I more or less understand why Thiago says that.
“But when you work as a coach with your staff, you know how hard it is to maintain a certain level to become champions all the time, to win all the knockout games in the cup, and to arrive at the top in the Champions League.
“So for me, I felt it was a big, big challenge to become champion every year in France and to arrive in cup finals. You feel every day what is needed to have this mentality.
“I can understand from the outside, that Thiago feels like this. The Premier League for Chelsea has a much higher value than the domestic league is to Paris. That’s maybe why he feels like this.
“In general, it should always be like this. Sports at the highest level, we have to feel light and feel the joy that comes with playing at this level. So hopefully we feel the joy and adventure of playing at this level.
Tuchel confirmed in his pre-match press conference that Silva will not feature in tomorrow night’s Round of 16 first leg against Atletico Madrid due to injury.