PSG not as good as Barca – Pereira
Madrid – Valencia defender Joao Pereira believes his side's recent performance against Barcelona proves they can compete with the best as they prepare to take on Paris Saint-Germain as the Champions League returns on Tuesday.
The Portuguese full-back provided the cross for Nelson Valdez to score the winner as Valencia continued their revival under Ernesto Valverde with a 1-0 win over Celta Vigo on Saturday.
That result followed the 1-1 draw with Barca last weekend and despite their huge investment in players over the past two seasons, Pereira doesn't think PSG have hit the heights of the Catalans just yet.
“All games are different. Barcelona are a fantastic team and they are better than anyone in the world, not just in Spain,” he said.
“The way PSG play is nothing like Barca. It is a different competition and they will be different games.”
Pereira is though more than aware of the talent the Parisians have at their disposal, but said there are no special plans for trying to deal with Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
“It is a game that everyone is going to watch. PSG have great players, they have spent a lot of money, they are top of the French league and I think it will be a great game.
“They are all good players and we have to be very focused to try and stop them.
“They have a lot of stars and they are forming a team. With the great players they are signing the more time they play together the better they will be.”
Valverde will have to wait though to see if he will have a natural left-back available for the visit of the French league leaders as Aly Cissokho is a doubt with an ankle injury and Jeremy Mathieu remains on the sidelines.
Should neither of them make it then Andres Guardado will once again deputise.
PSG boss Carlos Ancelotti meanwhile took the opportunity to rest Ibrahimovic and Ezequiel Lavezzi from the start of Friday's 3-1 win over Bastia.
Both did eventually make an appearance and scored in the second-half.
The Italian will undoubtedly recall his star duo for the clash at the Mestalla but Ancelotti confirmed another high-profile signing, David Beckham, won't start training with his new teammates until after they return from Spain.
“He is coming on Wednesday, he will start work with the team and we are going to see what his physical condition is like for possibly the match against Sochaux,” he said.
However, the former Chelsea boss did indicate that Beckham is likely to travel with the squad to Valencia.
“I think he'll come and watch the game,” he added. – Sapa-AFP