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May 23, 2014

Blanc: PSG will strengthen despite FFP

FC's Gab Marcotti explains how the FFP rule was broken by PSG and Manchester City and how it will affect them.

Laurent Blanc has insisted Paris Saint-Germain will be able to reinforce their squad for next season despite being "in UEFA's sights" because of their financial fair play infringements.

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Last week, European football's governing body fined both the French champions and their Premier League counterparts Manchester City, limiting their Champion League squads for next season and telling both they must restrict their transfer dealings in the summer.

PSG invested heavily a year ago -- including a reported French record deal of 64 million euros for Edinson Cavani -- and spent a further 20 million euros on Newcastle's Yohan Cabaye in January.

Although such spending will not be possible this time around, Blanc said the squad that kicked off the 2014-15 campaign would be upgraded, with Chelsea's Eden Hazard still a potential target.

"Unfortunately for us, next year, we're going to be in UEFA's sights so we're not going to be able to do what we want," he said in quotes reported by RMC.

"But I think we're going to be able to improve the team. Don't forget that we have a team that was improved upon compared to last year, and I think that will again be the case next year.

"In my opinion we already have a very good team, so we don't need a huge amount of players. In think that we'll manage to do what we want to improve the team, while following UEFA's constraints very closely."

On Friday, reports in the French media suggested David Luiz was set to move from Chelsea to PSG in a 62 million euro deal - and Blues teammate Hazard could yet join him.

PSG attempted to convince Hazard to move to the Parc des Princes from Lille in 2012, but the Belgium international opted to switch to London instead.

"He's a player who beats men," Le Parisien reported Blanc as saying. "You can talk about everything, the system, individual or collective qualities, but a player capable of beating three or four opponents at any moment of a match is something else. But I can like a player while also knowing that I won't get him."

He said the French champions would not reveal what number of players they hoped to be able to sign, adding: "In spite of financial fair play, everyone thinks PSG is going to buy all the players on the market. That's not true."

Meanwhile, the coach confirmed that Jeremy Menez, who has not been offered an extension to his contract, which expires in June, would leave the club and could be followed by Brazilian centre-back Alex, who is also out of contract next month.

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