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Zenit sign Bart Simpson

The Toe Poke 12 hours ago
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Dec 22, 2012

Ancelotti predicts success in 2013

Carlo Ancelotti believes 2013 could bring great success to Paris Saint-Germain after seeing his side end the year by clinching top spot in the Ligue 1 table.

Though, in theory, second-placed Lyon could still overhaul their three-point and 11-goal deficit to Ancelotti's men when they host Nice on Saturday, practicality says PSG picked up the honorific crown of 'autumn champions' with their 3-0 victory at Brest on Friday.

• Blog: PSG triumph in autumn league

Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored a league-leading 18th goal of the season to put the visitors ahead ten minutes after the break in Brittany following the first-half dismissal of the hosts' Abdoulwahid Sissoko, brother of PSG's Momo.

A Kevin Gameiro strike and an own-goal from former PSG defender Bernard Mendy sealed the result, giving PSG their fourth successive win and clean sheet in the league, leading Ancelotti to dream of what might be in 2013.

"The players' work in recent months has been good. The attitude has changed, the quality of their play has improved. Next year could be a good year for us," Ancelotti said. The performance was good. The team used the man advantage well.

"We didn't push a lot in the first half, but we controlled it after we scored. It was a good confirmation of our attitude. We've finished the year well, and hope to start next year just as well."

The impressive end to the first half of the season is in stark contrast to just a couple of weeks ago with Ancelotti himself uttering the word "crisis" following his team's surprise 2-1 defeat at Nice.

PSG missed out on the title last season after being overhauled by Montpellier, having finished top of the table at Christmas. But Ancelotti is optimistic there will be no repeat of that slip if his side maintain their current form.

"We've had problems. Many players were looking for the new identity of the team, there were some difficult moments," he said. "But the reaction reaction was good, that's the most important thing. We have found a good solution on and off the pitch. Next year is very important. We have the Champions League tie with Valencia and the league. I'm confident though because the last few months have been very, very good for us."

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