Zinedine Zidane has thrown his support behind Paris Saint-Germain ahead of their date with Barcelona in the Champions League quarter-finals.
Blaise Matuidi’s stoppage-time effort allowed PSG to snatch a 2-2 draw at Parc des Princes last week in the first leg, and Real Madrid sporting director Zidane believes PSG have an excellent chance of causing an upset in the second leg in Catalunya.
“I will be supporting Paris. I am behind the French club,” the 40-year-old told RMC Sport.
“This game is positive for French football. Even though I am from Marseille it is rather nice to see Paris to rub shoulders with Barcelona.
“I see it being hard for them. But I think the fact that they scored late in the game means it will be interesting. It will be difficult at Camp Nou but this is a team that is capable of worrying Barca.”
Zidane – who scored 46 times in 210 appearances for Madrid – also stood up for underfire Real attacker Karim Benzema, stating his compatriot needs more encouragement from the fans.
“What a player needs when he is struggling a bit is to have support,” Zidane said.
“He is one of the best players in the France team. I can understand people who come to the stadium (to jeer) as they want to see their striker scoring goals. But I would say that we must support the players. He has great qualities, he will emerge from this difficult situation.
“And the France team will benefit soon. I also had difficulties in the France team. It happens in a career to have bad runs. Fortunately, however, he can bounce back.”