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Al-Khelaïfi: 'I'll take my time'

Ligue 1 Conforama > News

Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaïfi has said he won't rush into appointing a replacement for outgoing sporting director Leonardo, preferring to wrap up some big-name signings before replacing the Brazilian.

Leonardo sent shockwaves through the French footballing world when he handed in his resignation on Thursday, but Al-Khelaïfi was keen to calm things down when he spoke to the press about how Paris Saint-Germain will push on and keep to their lofty ambitions.

Focus on transfers

"I'll take my time concerning the question of replacing Leo, or any other question pertaining to the management of the club," the PSG president declared. "Right now we're working on signing more big names to further bolster our champion team. That's where my immediate priorities lie."

However, Al-Khelaïfi made no secret of the fact that Leonardo's imminent departure - the Brazilian will cease his functions at the club when the summer transfer window closes on September 2 - has hit him hard.

"I understand his decision, and I respect it, even though I regret it enormously," he explained. "Leo accomplished some great things and did a terrific job over the last two years, bringing a lot of credibility to the sporting aspect of our project. I thank him for all his excellent work and I wish him the best for the future."


With Leonardo's departure coming hot on the heels of that of coach Carlo Ancelotti - who has since been replaced by former Bordeaux and France boss Laurent Blanc - many have felt that the capital club have been pushed back to square one, but Al-Khelaïfi doesn't agree.

"Their [Leonardo and Ancelotti's] motivations in leaving were very different," he said. "But anyway, seeing key team members leave is part of life at a football club or in any kind of enterprise. People arrive, and people leave."


>> NEWS: Leonardo steps down

>> CLUB PROFILE: Paris Saint-Germain

>> TRANSFERS: All the official moves

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