Paul Le Guen is determined Paris Saint-Germain FC will take their thrilling Ligue 1 form into their UEFA Cup tie with VfL Wolfsburg, saying: "The league is important but none of the other competitions will be neglected."
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Paul Le Guen is determined Paris Saint-Germain FC will take their thrilling Ligue 1 form into their UEFA Cup tie with VfL Wolfsburg, saying: "The league is important for us but none of the other competitions will be neglected."
A 2-1 win against AS Saint-Etienne on Saturday moved PSG up to second in France for the first time since 20 November 2005, but while he is expected to make some changes against Wolfsburg with a view to an important league fixture at Grenoble Foot 38 this weekend, coach Le Guen said: "The league is important for us but none of the other competitions will be neglected."
Defender Grégory Bourillon (back) and striker Loris Arnaut (knee) will miss the Wolfsburg game, as will Mateja Kežman, who is serving a club suspension for a breach of discipline. However, midfielder Jérémy Clément, who scored his first top-flight goal of the season against St-Etienne, said: "It's another competition but we will approach the UEFA Cup with the same enthusiasm as we do our league games."
PSG have not enjoyed much success in France or in Europe in recent seasons, but the memory of their last UEFA Cup game of 2008 – a 4-0 win against FC Twente – has helped Clément and the fans to maintain their interest. "Wasn't the atmosphere just massive?" he remembered. "I hope it will be the same on Wednesday. Winning the first leg would be great looking ahead to next week."
Felix Magath's Wolfsburg showed why they are rated as one of the most dangerous sides in Germany by finishing above AC Milan in their UEFA Cup group. Like PSG, they also made another significant step at the weekend, triumphing 2-0 at Eintracht Frankfurt to finally take their first three away points in the Bundesliga this season.
'A great chance'
Their away form has been much more impressive in the UEFA Cup, where they have recorded two draws and a win on their travels. And while Magath will certainly be without top scorer Grafite (knee) and Ashkan Dejagah (hepatitis A) and possibly Sascha Riether (knee), the coach has reason to feel optimistic. "Having finished top of our group, we will play the second leg at home," he said. "That gives us a great chance to reach the next round."