PSG boss Thomas Tuchel’s hilarious opening line to reporters after Real Madrid win
But in the end the trio’s absence didn’t cost Thomas Tuchel’s side, who romped home to a comfortable victory against a crestfallen Madrid.
Angel Di Maria scored twice against his former employers to give PSG a 2-0 lead, before Thomas Meunier sealed the rout in stoppage time.
Now many are tipping the French champions to go all the way and lift their first Champions League in Istanbul next May after such a masterful performance – and without their three main men in attack.
However, last season’s collapse against Manchester United at the last-16 stage has clearly taught Tuchel not to become complacent.
The PSG boss opened his post-match press conference last night by telling reporters: “If anyone asks if we are going to win the Champions League, I am leaving.”
He went onto add: “Maybe the absence of Cavani, Neymar and Mbappe helped the team.
“Maybe the pressure was less, because everybody was wondering how we could win without those three players.
“It can help because we weren’t favourites without Neymar, Mbappe and Cavani.
“It could have taken some of the pressure off the players.”
Tuchel also hailed former Everton star Idrissa Gueye for his outstanding display in last night’s win, labelling the midfielder “a machine”.
“He’s a machine; he never stops running, wins a lot of balls and against a team like Real it’s really important,” he said.
“It was a good mix between the three, with Marquinhos and Marco [Verratti], with a lot of intensity and possession.”