Laurent Blanc will not be drawn into a war of words with Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho ahead of next week’s Champions League quarterfinal first leg, the Paris St Germain boss said on Thursday.
Mourinho often likes to engage rival coaches in pre-match mind games and described PSG as the favourites to go through when the draw was made last week.
“I will not play this game,” Blanc told a news conference on the eve of PSG’s trip to Nice in Ligue 1.
“It is my choice. Mourinho is going to talk, to comment, it’s the way he operates.”
PSG keeper Salvatore Sirigu also warned against Mourinho’s mind games.
“He said PSG are the favourites,” said the Italian. “When he says something it’s always premeditated.
“I don’t think like him. We have the same chances as Chelsea.”
The first leg will be played at the Parc des Princes on Wednesday with the return leg at Stamford Bridge on April 8.
Blanc was full of praise for the talents of Mourinho who has led Chelsea to the top of the Premier League in his first season back at the club he led to the English title in 2005 and 2006.
“We’re going to have to play a great game against a great team and a great coach,” said the former defender who was a player under then-Barcelona assistant manager Mourinho in 1996-97.
“He is one of the greatest. I say so because I think so.”