Edinson Cavani, the 29-year-old PSG and Uruguay striker, put in a performance against Arsenal which showcased his talents, but also perfectly summed up why he has never kicked on and become one of the top forwards in the world.
Talent? Yes. Athleticism? Yes. Work rate? Definitely. Composure? Not so sure. Cavani has always had the makings of a world-class player, but the €64 million man has never become consistent in front of goal. For a striker at one of Europe’s top clubs that is surely the most important skill of all.
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) September 14, 2016
Cavani offers a great physical as well as aerial threat that often troubles opposition centre-backs, although rarely will he have been given the space that Shkodran Mustafi afforded him in the first minute last night at the Parc des Princes.
Cavani is also athletic, and made numerous excellent runs between Mustafi and Laurent Koscielny, only for his finishing technique or composure to let him down. Only on one occasion, when he tried to round David Ospina, who stretched to palm the ball away, was the Arsenal goalkeeper required to make a first-rate save. This has become all-too familiar a recurrence.
Poor finishing after good runs has become to norm for Cavani at PSG, but with the Uruguayan now the main striker following the departure of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, manager Unai Emery must bring the best out of Cavani consistently if PSG are to make it to the knockout stages of the Champions League.
Cavani no longer needs to play wide to accommodate the Swede, but he needs to become clinical in front of goal.
PSG’s longevity in the Champions League depends on it.
Daniel Rey, Pundit Arena
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