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Paris’ other club are on the verge of reigniting one of football’s lesser-known rivalries

Paris FC are pushing for promotion to Ligue 1 nearly 50 years after an acrimonious split with PSG

Both play out of Paris. Both play in Nike sponsored blue kits. Both proudly boast the Eiffel Tower on their chest.

Both once boasted Mamadou Sakho amongst their ranks.

But that’s about where the similarities between PSG and Paris FC finish.


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The man that changed everything in Paris (and a former president)

Getty - Contributor
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The man that changed everything in Paris (and a former president)

PFC were formed in 1969 at a time when Paris’ only other top flight team- Red Star FC- were floundering near the bottom of the table.

In an attempt to get stuck straight into Division 1 action PFC merged with Stade Saint-Germain to create Paris Saint-Germain. Sound familiar?

However the newly-formed club’s refusal to move from the suburbs of Paris led to a split just one year later.

PFC stayed in the top flight and kept all their players while PSG were relegated to the third division with only a handful of amateurs to call upon (one of whom was Youri Djorkaeff’s dad).

PSG, but not quite as you know them

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PSG, but not quite as you know them

Fast forward 48 years and the picture is very different.

PSG are cantering towards a fifth Ligue 1 title in six years but will have to find room in a trophy cabinet boasting 16 domestic trophies won since 2004.

In the same period PFC have won the Championnat de France amateur, which is France’s fourth tier, and been promoted from the third division as runners-up.

Les Parisiens can call upon the two most expensive players in world football in Neymar and, when he completes a move from Monaco, Kylian Mbappe.

PFC’s record arrival is Didier Ovono, a 34-year-old goalkeeper.

PFC’s equivalent of Neymar

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PFC’s equivalent of Neymar

That’s not to say PFC haven’t had any impact on French football.

Manager Roger Lemerre cut his teeth at PFC before winning Euro 2000 and the 2001 Confederations Cup with France and taking Tunisia all the way at the 2004 African Cup of Nations.

Mamadou Sakho came through PFC’s academy before captaining PSG at the age of 17.

Tijani Belaid went from PFC to Inter Milan and would play for the Tunisian national team, alongside his brother Aymen who also came through the academy.

A year before Tijani passed through a certain Gabriel Obertan spent a year at PFC getting his career back on track before a two-year stint at Man Unite derailed it again.

You’ve got PFC to blame for this, Man United fans

PA:Press Association
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You’ve got PFC to blame for this, Man United fans

We’ve looked at the past, we’ve caught up with the present, so what does the future hold?

A meeting of the two clubs, hopefully.

PFC are in touching distance of the promotion pack in Ligue 2 following an impressive victory against Sochaux.

Manager Fabien Mercadal is on the brink of taking a bunch of journeymen into Ligue 1 despite PFC playing in the third tier as recently as last year.

Would PSG be able to beat the French national team?

The man with the magic touch

Getty - Contributor
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The man with the magic touch

Top goalscorer Malik Tchokounte came through Nice’s academy but never made the cut, rebuilding his career at FCA Calvi and USL Dunkerque before signing for PFC last July.

His international experience consists of five caps for the County of Nice.

Captain Herve Lybohy took a similar route to Tchokounte, turning out for the majestically named Olympique Saint-Quentin and Etoile Frejus Saint-Raphael before winding up at PFC.

The man who could be snapping Neymar in two next season

Getty - Contributor
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The man who could be snapping Neymar in two next season

For Ligue 1 experience you have to turn to Madagascar international Lalaina Nomenjanahary, who played in the top flight with Lens, or former Lorient midfielder Valentin Lavigne.

The first and last time PSG and PFC met was a 1-1 draw in a friendly fixture in July 2017.

You can bet your bottom Euro that there won’t be anything friendly if the two meet next season.

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