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Blanc primed for Anderlecht showdown

Laurent Blanc called Paris Saint-Germain's meeting with Anderlecht on Tuesday "perhaps the most important of the group" as his side can clinch a place in the Champions League knockout round with a win.

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Victory at the Parc des Princes will not only hand PSG a last-16 berth, but also secure them top spot of Group C.

Though his side thrashed the Belgians 5-0 barely a fortnight ago, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic grabbing four goals in Brussels, Blanc, warned his players not to take anything for granted with progress the prize at stake.

"I've heard people say, 'It's difficult to get motivated'. If we're not motivated for this match, I won't understand it at all. It's got nothing to do with the first game,” Blanc said.

“We have to think that we have the possibility to qualify for the knockout stage of the Champions League. We suffered against Olympiakos, we did what we had to do against Benfica and Anderlecht.

PSG thrashed Anderlecht 5-0 last time out in the Champions League.
PSG thrashed Anderlecht 5-0 last time out in the Champions League.

"We can confirm all of that by qualifying, and that's where our motivation should lie. So it's a very important match, perhaps the most important of the group."

Following Friday's 4-0 defeat of Lorient, PSG remain unbeaten this season, top Ligue 1 by two points, and have now not tasted defeat in 31 matches in all competitions.

Though the Lorient victory came at the cost of a thigh injury to Edinson Cavani that means the Uruguayan forward misses out, Zlatan Ibrahimovic (knee) and Thiago Silva (hamstring) return to bolster the PSG cause.

"The objective is to qualify," France midfielder Blaise Matuidi said. "We've going to try and continue producing the sort of football we've played recently, and we are really determined to get through the group stage. We're on the right track.

"It's another game. We made the first match easy. If we put in all the ingredients necessary, we'll have a chance of winning the game. Without that, we could miss out. That's what the Champions League is all about."


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