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Christophe Galtier Under Pressure To Save Paris Saint-Germain Job As He Returns To Nice

Christophe Galtier hoped to lead Paris Saint-Germain to its first Champions League championship when he departed Nice to become their head coach.

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Galtier has conceded 8 defeats this year across all competitions as the coach of PSG.
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When Christophe Galtier left Nice to coach Paris Saint-Germain, he had hopes of leading the club to its first Champions League title. (More Football News)

Now he heads back to Nice for Saturday's league game fighting to save his job after PSG's terrible run of form. Last weekend's loss to Lyon was PSG's second straight home defeat in the league and eighth across all competitions this year.

"That's far too many. Match after match we're using up our trump cards," Galtier said.

"Everyone, myself included, needs to be fully aware of the situation and the work that needs to be done."

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The Lyon loss has given second-place Lens and third-place Marseille — both six points behind PSG — a glimmer of hope with nine rounds left.

Galtier was bitterly disappointed with how his players appeared to give up against a modest Lyon side and issued a wake-up call.

"We gave up quickly. We lacked character and personality. There's disappointment but also anger," he said.

"We need to conduct ourselves differently. We need to respond like champions, we need to react with pride."

Before the World Cup in Qatar led to an early mid-season break, PSG was unbeaten and scoring freely.

Since Lionel Messi guided Argentina to victory against Kylian Mbappé's France, things have unravelled at PSG.

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Lens beat PSG on New Year's day, handing PSG its first defeat of the season and triggering off a domino effect of dismal performances — including a second straight elimination from the Champions League last-16 stage — that could finish Galtier's tenure before the season ends.

The next two games are crucial for him and difficult for the players.

"We'll need a lot more personality and character to start winning again," said Galtier, who was in charge of Nice for just one season after winning the title with Lille in 2021.

Eighth-place Nice is on a 14-game unbeaten run as unheralded coach Didier Digard strives for a Europa League spot. The southern team and its virulent fans usually gives PSG a very hard time at home, with a 3-1 win in 2017 ending PSG's title hopes that season.

Following the game at Nice, PSG hosts Lens on the following Saturday. Losing one or both matches could push PSG to axe Galtier and hire an eighth coach in 12 years of Qatari-backed ownership.

Lens will be confident of beating lowly Strasbourg on Friday and Marseille is aiming to maintain its excellent away form when it visits mid-table Lorient on Sunday.

Marseille remains the only French side to win the Champions League, back in 1993, and reminds PSG of that fact as every season passes and PSG falls short in Europe.

Despite piles of cash and many big-name signings, PSG has reached only one Champions League final — and that was during the shortened 2020 coronavirus-hit campaign — since QSI took charge in June, 2011.

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Fans have grown increasingly frustrated at the club's shortcomings and the fact its stars can't get it right in the big games. Questions have been asked about Neymar's lifestyle in recent years and the injury-prone Brazil forward was ruled out rest of the campaign following an ankle operation early last month.

Now the home fans have turned on Messi — the record seven-time men's Ballon d'Or winner and the 2022 World Cup's best players — whistling and booing him during the Lyon game for a perceived lack of effort.

"You can't expect Leo to do everything," Galtier said.

"I think the boos are very harsh."

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PSG fell well short against Lyon, an inconsistent team fielding several young players and coached by Laurent Blanc — who was fired by PSG in 2016 just months after signing a new contract. A similar fate which then befell Thomas Tuchel and his successor Mauricio Pochettino.

Blanc's team sits in ninth place but Blanc pointed out why his side was able to dominate PSG so easily.

"When you have players who can make strong runs against PSG, it's a good thing because they're in trouble as soon as you play the ball into space," he said.

That's bad news for PSG considering that Nice and especially Lens play a high-octane running game that combines strong pressing and mobility.

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