Thiago Motta wants domestic double after reaching PSG landmark
PARIS -- Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Thiago Motta expressed his happiness at reaching 200 competitive appearances for the French champions in their 5-0 Coupe de France semifinal thrashing of Monaco.
Julian Draxler, Edinson Cavani, Safwan Mbae (own goal), Blaise Matuidi and Marquinhos all scored at Parc des Princes, while the Motta played the opening hour in midfield as he reached his landmark.
"Personally, I am very happy to have played my 200th match with PSG," Motta said in the mixed zone postmatch. "I would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone at the club, the president and also the different coaches I have had here -- Carlo [Ancelotti], Laurent [Blanc] and now Unai [Emery] -- and all my teammates.
"I owe them a lot. It is not easy to reach a figure like this one. Right now, I feel at home here and I am making the most of it, hoping to finish this season with another Ligue 1 title and another Coupe de France."
Unai Emery was pleased his players showed a youthful Monaco side no mercy and said that PSG are targeting a record Coupe de France 11th title to become the undisputed club with most titles ahead of rivals Marseille.
"This 100th edition of the competition means a lot to us," he said. "If we win in the final, it will be the club's 11th time winning this trophy. That is why our objective was so clear tonight -- beat Monaco in front of our fans.
"The team turned in a complete performance and we deserve our place at Stade de France against Angers. We hope to win this title and really enjoy it with our fans."
Alphonse Areola replaced Kevin Trapp in goal and kept a clean sheet, making one sensational save to deny Abdou Diallo's first-half header in a "positive" outing.
"Monaco came here with a re-jigged line-up, so we had to make sure we did everything right," Areola said. "
"That is what we did -- we played our game and proved very sharp up front. I am happy to have returned to action. As I do every time, I gave my all. It went well for me tonight. We did not concede and we scored five, so it is positive."
PSG now travel to Allianz Riviera on Sunday to face Nice in a crunch Ligue 1 clash, which PSG cannot afford to lose as they try to close the gap on Monaco with time running out.
Jonathan Johnson covers PSG and the French national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Jon_LeGossip.