Barcelona beware: How PSG could line up with Draxler
The Germany international looks likely to depart Wolfsburg to join the Ligue 1 champions, offering coach Unai Emery several options to energise his team
Sitting third in Ligue 1 and five points behind first place at the midway point, Paris Saint-Germain are in need of an injection of creativity and pace to help them regain control of the title race.
In a bid to revitalise the squad under new coach Unai Emery, the French giants have turned to Wolfsburg’s Julian Draxler to help add some much needed support for Edinson Cavani.
With plenty of options in midfield and attack, though, coach Unai Emery will have to make a few adjustments to his team and his tactical set-up to accommodate the Wolfsburg player should he make the move in January.
Draxler has an advantage in that regard, given that his versatility means he can play on either wing or as a No.10, which will help Emery in making him a regular starter. Draxler has played all three of those roles for Wolfsburg this season and has even filled in up front on occasion.
The Germany international has been used primarily on the left-wing or attacking midfield at Wolfsburg and it seems that could be the case in Paris.
Lucas Moura has underwhelmed in recent weeks and Emery has started to use him on the left-wing more frequently after starting the season on the opposite flank. Draxler could use his pace and dribbling ability to threaten opponents, but it would mean he would have to improve his defensive work to help protect left-back Layvin Kurzawa.
If Emery decides to continue using Lucas and Di Maria, he will likely line up with the ex-Schalke star in attacking midfield, where he says he feels the strongest. It will free him up and offer plenty of passing options with the wingers charging forward and Cavani opening up space, while he can also provide a direct goal threat himself. Crucially, the defensive demands are not too great.
Draxler has rarely featured on the right flank throughout his career, and with Di Maria being one of the best creators in the French top flight, it is unlikely that the German will displace the Argentine there. However, Di Maria did play on the left side in the early days of the season, so if Emery wanted to switch him back, Draxler could be moved to the right. Draxler is right-footed though, and Emery is not generally one for putting wingers on the side of their stronger foot.