Areola: 'We're ready'

Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Alphonse Areola spoke to PSG TV about the upcoming challenges, starting with Wednesday's Champions League clash at home to Red Star Belgrade, at 18:55 CET at the Parc des Princes.

Alphonse, the UEFA Champions League returns to the Parc des Princes on Wednesday…

A Champions League night at the Parc des Princes is above all an intense evening, a big competition and a party because the club lives for this competition and the supporters, us the players and the entire club, the coaching staff, the medical staff, we’re all ready for this objective.

How do you prepare for a Champions League match?
Whether it’s in the match or in training, there always a lot of intensity – that’s what the coach asks for… he wants a lot of intensity in everything we do and I think we’ve shown that every time. It’s true that the loss to Liverpool hurt a bit, but it also helped us stay focused and fully understand the level we need to be at see what we needed to do to lift our game higher still.

After Red Star Belgrade, it's another big match with Lyon at the Parc…

We know that whether it’s Lyon or another team, when they are playing us, they give their absolute best, that come here to knock us off, for them, it’ the match of the year… It’s up to us to show that no-one scares us and we are the best team in France. We will play our football, stick to our plan, play high-intensity, put in the ingredients to win the most matches possible, starting with this ninth in a row.

How is the relationship with Gianluigi Buffon?
The competition for places is very healthy between us. Gigi brings all his experience to the table… He’s a legend, I’m not embarrassed to say it, because I really believe it. He is one of my idols and it’s a great honour to train with him and he’s also here to push my to give my best and improve as well and it’s up to me to keep learning and progressing and with him next to me it’s even better.

Thomas Tuchel has shown a lot of faith in the club's youth academy and the players that have graduated from there...
It’s good, not just for me but for all the youngsters and he has shown that he really will be counting on the youngsters because he played those that stepped up to the first team, the ones that had just signed pro contracts. It’s great for the club’s youth academy and it’s great to play the kids that have emerged from the academy.