Monaco no threat to PSG, says Lyon president

Jean-Michel Aulas does not see any real threat to les Parisiens retaining their Ligue 1 title this year, despite big spending from the league's newcomers
Olympique Lyonnais president Jean-Michel Aulas has played down Monaco’s chances of snatching the Ligue 1 title from Paris Saint-Germain on their return to the top flight of French football.

Thanks to owner Dmitry Rybolovlev, Monaco have been able to invest heavily this summer, with the likes of Radamel Falcao, Joao Moutinho and James Rodriguez arriving at the club.

However, Aulas does not believe Claudio Ranieri’s side have the credentials to mount a serious title charge and the Lyon chief cannot see past another title celebration in Paris come May.

“With their first class recruitment, I give PSG a 99.9% chance of being champions again. It will be difficult for Monaco.” claimed Aulas when he spoke to Le JDD.

“There are adjustments to be made, especially with the club coming up from Ligue 2."

The Ligue 1 champions have also added to their squad with Lucas Digne, Marquinhos and Edinson Cavani joining the club, while new coach Laurent Blanc has replaced Carlo Ancelotti, who has left for Real Madrid.

Aulas admits despite the summer of upheaval at the Parc des Princes, they are still the favourites this year.

"Due to the size of the sums invested, the pressure is strongly on PSG," he continued.

“I don’t think PSG are weakened by the departure of Carlo Ancelotti. I have great respect for Laurent Blanc.”

But, while Aulas does not see les Parisiens' change of management causing any problems, sporting director Leonardo's departure from the club, who left following a 13-month ban for pushing a referee, is a loss to the whole of French football.

“I was sad,” admitted the 64-year-old. “Leonardo has a history, a positive international image.”

"It’s a shame he has left the French landscape, even if it has been brought about by a deserved punishment.”

PSG continued their build-up to the new season by winning the Trophee des Champions on Saturday, beating Bordeaux 2-1 courtesy of a 95th-minute winner from Alex.