Real Madrid's last real chance at lifting a trophy this spring is to three-peat in the Champions League–but it must oust PSG just to reach the quarterfinals.

By 90Min
February 14, 2018

Zinedine Zidane has brushed off any suggestions that his job may be on the line as Real Madrid take on Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of the last 16 of the Champions League on Wednesday night.

He also played down talk that the event will be a 'showdown' for superstars Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar.

Winning the Champions League for the third consecutive year is Real Madrid's last real chance at silverware this season, after falling behind way La Liga leaders Barcelona and an unceremonious exit from the Copa Del Rey to Leganes. However, Zidane is not letting the pressure of the situation get to him, ahead of arguably the toughest to call match of the Champions League round.

"We are not going to change what people think of us, I will try and work which is my passion, I will try to put across a lot of things and the rest I cannot control," said Zidane, as quoted by Marca.

"I am very happy to play this type of game and there is no extra pressure. We have prepared this week the same as ever. There is always some pressure but it is the same as ever.

"This is not a final, they are two Champions League games, and what bothers me is to play good football. With the team that we have then we can do well and I am not thinking about what can happen in the future."

While the eyes of the world may be on current Ballon d'Or holder Ronaldo and €222m Neymar, Zidane was keen to stress that Real Madrid will need their whole team 'focused'.

"We are talking about two great players but this is between Madrid and PSG not Neymar against Cristiano," Zidane said.

"Cristiano has achieved remarkable things with five Ballon d'Or and I am not going to compare them now. Everyone knows about Neymar on the pitch, they both have a lot of quality and can make a difference.

"What is important for me is that the team is focused on the game. We will see what happens tomorrow and how we start. It is not important who plays but how we get on in the game."

The Marseille-born manager also dismissed suggestions his personal origins and the rivalry with Paris add an extra element of rivalry to the glamour clash.

"I don't have to show anything tomorrow, all I can do is focus on the game and that is what is important for me right now. Not what people will say about me.

"Being PSG it is true that as I am from Olympique de Marseille that there is a historical rivalry but I am concentrating on Madrid against PSG."

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