Sports

Meunier: 'We're going there to win'

Thomas, you’re currently in a great spell. Did you expect to settle in so quickly?“When I arrived here, no-one knew me, and that was normal, because the Belgian league is not necessarily very well followed in France. But my adaptation, whether it be with the squad or to the league, has been very good. I have managed to make a place for myself little by little, and I had time when Serge was injured and then went to the CAN. I was able to prove I have my place in this squad. All of that reinforces my decision to sign for Paris. In the end, I can say to myself that I wasn’t aiming too high by joining this club.”
You caught the eye against Barcelona. How did you experience that match and your duel with Neymar?“That game will always be a great memory. For the fans, that game is already in the annals of the club. We were exemplary that evening and everyone was behind us. Now, we have to put that game to one side and go to the Camp Nou with the same motivaiton and the same desire. Regarding my duel with Neymar, I took advantage of the fact he doesn’t like defending all that much to go forward…”

You also delighted the Parc des Princes crowd with a magnificent dribble that led to Edinson Cavani’s goal.“I enjoyed myself! I’m full of confidence right now, everything’s going well for me and it was the opportunity for me to show my qualities both in defence and attack.”

Ten days after that game, Paris head to Marseille for the Classico…is stringing together big games an additional source of motivation?“Having faced Barcelona before going to Marseille gives you more confidence. We are going to find ourselves in a red-hot atmosphere. It’s the kind of match in which millions of people have their eyes on you. So there’s just one thing to do: work well on the pitch. I’m really excited about experiencing my first Classico at the Vélodrome. It’s for the atmosphere at these games that you play football. It’s true there will be quite a lot of pressure, but that’s part of sport, you have to live with that. I’m really looking forward to Sunday!”

What’s your opinion of Marseille’s season so far?“What I’ve noticed is that they’re a team that often makes the difference at home. I remember their Coupe de France game against Lyon (2-1 a.e.t.). They have also won their last two Ligue 1 home games (2-0 v Guingamp, 2-0 v Rennes), so we have to be careful. They’re a team that doesn’t perhaps travel so well, but they have some quality players.”

What kind of game do you expect on Sunday?“We’ll have to be very careful, because I think there’s a certain excitement and motivation at the idea of playing Paris. I remember from the first game (0-0). It wasn’t easy for us that day. It’ll be a keenly-fought game, but one thing is certain: we’re going there to win!”

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