Olivier Echouafni: 'We're motivated and really looking forward to it'
The Paris Saint-Germain women's team coach faced the media ahead of Tuesday's UEFA Women's Champions League tie with Sparta Prague.
"The squad is feeling pretty good. We have tried to deal as best we could with not having played last week against Prague. Everyone is fine in every sense. I have a full squad available. I have my pick. We have had 10 days without ta game, but certain girls are in the rhythm of competition with their national teams and others having played against Issy. We haven't necessarily had time off. We were able to work a lot throughout the week in order to prepare for the Champions League and the league. We're going to have three matches in 8-10 days. It's going to be quite intense, especially in terms of rhythm. We've worked on the physical and tactical aspects of things."
"We're really motivated and looking forward to it! We are in this line of work for these kinds of games. There's the Champions League and the key game against Lyon. We're going step by step, but what we're focussed on over the next 24 hours is the Champions League game against Prague. We'll have two games to qualify, and the match comes at a good time as the girls are really looking forward to getting back into competition. We'll have to ask ourselves the right questions for each game. We have to be in the right place at the right time."
"When we look at their stats, you can see they're a team that qualifies regularly for the Champions League. They unbeaten in the league [seven wins from seven games]. We know they have a lot of Czech internationals. They haven't played a lot of competitive games in recent weeks. That's both an advantage and a danger. When you don't play for a certain amount of time, you lack rhythm and competition, but you're at 300% in terms of energy and motivation. I expect a tough game against an aggressive team. We mustn't take it lightly. We know that there are important ingredients required in the Champions League: rhythm, speed, aggression and intensity. If we don't put those ingredients in, it won't work out. They are perhaps an ageing squad, but they're also very experienced. It's important to get a good result in the first leg to be in the best conditions for the return."