|Spelling||Leonardo de Araujo|
|PSG Sporting Director|
|Org||Brazil National Team|
|Paris Saint-Germain [PSG]|
|Club as Player||AC Milan|
- 1998 07 12
- World Cup 1998 final where France defeat Brazil 3-0. Zinedine Zidane score 2 goals with assist from Emmanuel Petit and Youri Djorkaeff. also final goal came from Emmanuel Petit with assist by Patrick Vieira
2017 02 17 Retrieve
[While some critics, such as Sagnol, remain skeptical about Leonardo’s ability to deliver results in the transfer market, the Brazilian insists that he is full of energy for the job] I am really happy to come back to PSG once again.
This club has been so important to me in my football career and in my life. I had really emotional moments here both as a player in the late 90s and more recently as sporting director along with our chairman Nasser Al-Khelaifi on my return to the club in 2011.
Today, I come back to Paris full of energy to rejoin this club that I deeply respect
2019 09 16 Retrieve
[Leonardo sick of Neymar transfer saga] Neymar made mistakes, yes, but when the transfer window ended he came back in a positive way. He showed up on time [for training] after his matches with Brazil and he behaved very well. He played an important game in not easy conditions. And he scored a spectacular goal, in a Hollywood scenario. And, after the match, he made an honest and very good statement
It’s certain that, if we look at what he said word for word, we’ll always find things to comment on. And it’s true that we can’t say today that everything is settled. But you can’t make a Mexican telenovela around it all. We have to play and to train
He is now subject to the same internal rules as all the other players. He’s here and he’s part of the club. Neymar is not a bad guy. He’s part of the heritage of football, not just PSG. When you look at the squad, and what we have, for sure we are stronger with him
2019 11 07 Retrieve
[Zinedine Zidane discussed Kylian Mbappe’s reported admiration for Madrid as a child during a news conference] Honestly, it is a bit irritating. I think it is not the time to talk about it. First of all, Kylian is a player under contract with us for two and a half more years. Speaking all the time about dreams and will, I think it is time to stop a bit. Kylian is very important for us – he is the best young French player, a world champion and one of the best players in the world. This is not the time to knock him and destabilise him. Honestly, it is time for this to stop… Everybody wants him. However, nobody can get him
[responded to recent speculation linking coach Thomas Tuchel with the vacant Bayern Munich post] Look, I even saw something about us talking about a departure and all of that. We are in direct contact, all the time and about everything. It is true Thomas was already here when I arrived, there are many things we still need to know about each other. However, this is how it works between a sporting director and a coach who was already in place. The coach has his ideas and that is very important. Aside from that, I was never contacted by anybody – he has never asked me to leave and I have never told him anything. There is no story – nothing at all
2019 11 07b Retrieve
[Mbappe to Real Madrid talk ‘annoys’ PSG director Leonardo] Yes, it annoys me a little and it bothers. This is not the time to talk about this. He still has two-and-a-half years of contract with us. It’s time to stop all this. He is very important for us. He is the best young player that France has. He is world champion and even the best player in the world. This is not the time to destabilise or touch him
[On loan Inter forward Mauro Icardi proved to be the match winner as he continued his recent good form] It is true that this is a striker who brought us experience and started very well. We needed effective players. He is always present.
But [Angel] Di Maria also makes an incredible season, Mbappe and Neymar too. Few teams have attacks like that. Competition, we created it on purpose. Today is like that and maybe in a month it will be different. But the players are there to give the coach a headache
[Edinson Cavani continues to be linked with a move away from Paris, with his contract set to expire in June, but Leonardo declared the club and Uruguay striker are on the same page] He is the top scorer in the club’s history and I’m sure his story will end well here. We will move forward together and decide together. There is no doubt between us. A player like that, he must finish well. There is no deadline for new contract proposal. It will be according to our feeling
[Leonardo also quashed any uncertainty surrounding the future of coach Thomas Tuchel] I’m in direct contact with him and we talk to each other. But no one has contacted us and there is no story. You can be sure
2019 11 27 Retrieve
[Leonardo laughs off Zidane ‘love’ after PSG fight back for draw] Did he say that? I hadn’t seen anything! The only thing I know is that Mbappe is 100 per cent staying here. The rest is by the by. We are moving slowly [on a new contract] but we are going forward
[The first half at the Santiago Bernabeu ended in controversy when Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois was spared a red card thanks to VAR, which spotted a foul on Marcelo prior to the goalkeeper’s clumsy challenge that took down Mauro Icardi] The pictures are clear, I promised myself I wouldn’t talk about the referee. At the time of Idrissa [Gueye’s] hypothetical foul, the referee was not far from the action and he said there was no foul, then there was a penalty. Perhaps it wasn’t a red card, but he gave it, VAR called and he thought there had been a mistake, but it had already passed, it wasn’t a mistake. The rules say that he has the right to look back if it is a serious error. We can dispute that, but it wasn’t a serious mistake, he made it twice, that action could change the game. I understand [fans’ anger]. But I don’t think it is against PSG: if we look at everything that has happened over the last few years, I’d say we come out on top
2019 12 16 Retrieve
[PSG superstar Neymar’s effort & desire praised by Leonardo amid continued transfer speculation] I think Neymar is making a lot of effort in every way and also in terms of his state of mind. I think the story we have lived is real, it happened a short time ago, but I see a lot of effort on his part.
The system also forces him to go back, ditto for Kylian [Mbappe], [Mauro] Icardi too, [Edinson] Cavani always did and Pablo Sarabia and [Angel] Di Maria … they make themselves available and we also have a balance behind that we are forced to have.
Coming back to Neymar, he still has a lot to do, but I see a real desire on his part to make himself available.
I think I’m going to ask you not to ask the coach questions about the transfer window. The transfer window is a club issue. I have been in football for a long time, I know the limit of the role of the coach, the president, the communication director and that everyone does their job.
You have to stop with the coach, leave him alone, talk to him about the technical side of the team. The transfer window is a question of opportunity. This group there, for me, it is complete.
What is also positive is that we managed to play in Ligue 1 two young kids, [Adil] Aouchiche and [Tanguy] Kouassi and that is nice. In addition, I think that these are two players who will complement the workforce with their qualities
2020 01 20 Retrieve
[Leonardo reveals Atletico Madrid target wants out of PSG] We always said the same thing for Cavani. We hoped that he would stay at the club. Today, he asked to leave. We are studying the situation. We had a proposal from Atletico Madrid. We did not have a proposal worthy of the player’s worth. [But] I’m not sure Cavani will be here in February.
Today, there is nothing [to say he will leave]. But he has made the proposal to leave. We’ve never thought about selling him before. We will see how it turns out in the coming days, but we are listening to Cavani because we respect him. It’s a little clearer now, with him at the end of his contract.
[Leonardo admitted that while there were options to cover the 32-year-old’s potential exit, there would be no rushed decisions made about the player’s future] We have players who can play everywhere. There are many alternatives. [But] it’s hard to replace a player like Cavani. We must decide with lucidity. Like I said, we never thought about [selling him], but we are listening. The most important thing is balancing everybody’s desire. You can’t influence the [rest of the] group either. We [and Cavani] have always spoken with a lot of peace. We are talking about a story of six and a half years between us, not a week. There is a lot of respect between us
2020 06 13 Retrieve
[Leonardo confirms Cavani and Thiago Silva to leave PSG this summer] Cavani and Thiago Silva? Yes, we are coming to the end. The idea is to continue playing with them until the end of August. It was a very difficult decision to make; these are players who have marked the history of the club. Their stories were so beautiful. But yes, we are coming to the end. We had to make a logical decision, economically speaking and with regard to the generation that is coming through. Maybe we are wrong, I do not know, there is never a perfect moment. Now the Champions League is still in sight and the idea is to continue competing with them until the end of August. How it can be done is not yet clear [legally].
2020 06 14 Retrieve
[Leonardo says Edinson Cavani and Thiago Silva set to leave Paris St-Germain] It was a difficult decision to make - they are players who made their mark on the club’s history. The stories were so beautiful. But, yes, we are coming to the end
We had to make a logical decision. Maybe we are wrong, I do not know - there is never a perfect moment. Now the Champions League is still in sight, and the idea is to continue competing with them until the end of August. How it can be done is not yet clear
[When asked if forwards Neymar and Kylian Mbappe would still be at the club next season] Nothing tells us otherwise. They still have two years on their contracts and we’re more thinking about the future with them. We want to go forward
2020 06 14b Retrieve
[Edinson Cavani and Thiago Silva to leave Paris Saint-Germain this summer] It was a really difficult decision to take. [Thiago Silva and Edinson Cavani] are players who have had a big impact on this club’s history. You always wonder if you should carry on down the same path together or if it’s better to avoid a scenario where you’ve stayed for one year too many. It’s been such a wonderful journey, but we’re coming to the end. We had to make a logical decision, both in financial terms and also considering the next generation of players coming through. Maybe it’s the wrong decision, I don’t know. There’s never a perfect moment. The Champions League is still on the agenda and the plan is to remain in the competition with them until the end of August
2020 06 14c Retrieve
[PSG’s Leonardo confirms that Tuchel will stay on as manager] He has one year left on his contract and he will be on the bench next season. He has done well, the results are good. An extension? We have time to think about it. I surveyed no coach. Never. With Tuchel, we talked, he knows everything. It’s very clear, there’s nothing with anyone
It’s terrible for clubs because it places us in complex situations where we have the choice between letting go or overpaying. At PSG, there is competition. So, at 16-17 years old, it’s difficult to claim a place. And generally, since they don’t play, they don’t sign and go to clubs that have been courting them for two years. His (Kouassi’s) case is different, he found himself in the rotation without having yet signed a contract. It may be an error on my part, because the custom in this business is: ‘you do not sign, you do not play’. But his performance levels took priority. We probably have our responsibilities if we do not manage to keep our youngsters
2020 06 14d Retrieve
[Paris Saint-Germain sporting director Leonardo has affirmed his intention to tie Kylian Mbappe and Neymar down to the club on a long-term basis] There’s nothing that tells us they’ll leave this summer. They both still have two years left on their contracts and we’re thinking about what we can do next with them. We want to move forward. Mbappe is the future of PSG. This is what everyone wants. The ideal scenario would be for him to extend his contract. He’s already among the best five players in the word. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are 32 and 35, Neymar and Mbappe are 28 and 21 and they are with us. There’s no need to overthink it. We have to take advantage of having them because they’re something huge. We have to find a solution to continue together
We’ve not talked about it any more. He’s been very happy, he’s had a great season and he’s been very involved with the 3 squad