(MENAFN- The Peninsula) chinthana wasala |
Doha: French and European football heavyweights Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) on Wednesday trained in front of more than 30,000 fans who turned up to watch their favourite stars training at the iconic Khalifa International Stadium as the Parisian kicked off their winter tour of the Middle East.
PSG arrived in a special Qatar Airways flight earlier on Wednesday as they took part in a series of activations organised in Doha by the club's partners.
Fans had the opportunity to see the star-studded line-up, including the World Cup winner Lionel Messi and runner-up Kylian Mbappe as well as Brazil stars Neymar and captain Marquinhos, Moroccan sensation Achraf Hakimi in action, exactly one month after the Argentinean lifted the glittering trophy.
“A big THANK YOU to the more than 30,000 fans at Khalifa Stadium during the training of our Parisians,” the club posted on its official Twitter handle following the session, which was also attended by PSG President Nasser Al Khelaifi.
The fans in Doha were also in for a treat to watch the Parisians in action in their latest jersey, as the players sported the new 22/23 Fourth collection the first time.
The training session also helped the French Ligue 1 leaders to acclimatise to the conditions in the Middle East, ahead of their key match against a combined Al Hilal-Al Nassr team in an exhibition match which will be played in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Thursday.
The all-star match will pit together two of the world's greatest players of all time - Messi and Portuguese sensation Cristiano Ronaldo at the King Fahd Stadium as the two Ballon d'Or winners rekindle their old 'El Clasico' rivalry when they played for Barcelona and Real Madrid respectively.
However, PSG are looking to bounce back from an away defeat at Rennes, and captain Marquinhos was optimistic the Qatar tour will boost his side ahead of today's clash.
“We can keep the positive things from this tour. If we always look at the bad things, we don't move forward. We always train alone at the Camp des Loges, here we have the public who can give us a little energy. We have an important second part of the season, I hope this Qatar tour will boost us,” Marquinhos said.
Coach Christophe Galtier said the match will witness a good level of football
'We will have a good level match. It's good for international football, for football in this region. It will not be a training match. There are so many personalities and competitors on the ground,' Galtier said.