Blanc angry as PSG falls short again in bid for European Cup

Blanc angry as PSG falls short again in bid for European Cup

MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Laurent Blanc has one fundamental goal with Paris Saint-Germain: win the Champions League.

Once again the coach has fallen short in the mission set by the Qatari ownership, with PSG eliminated in the quarterfinals for a fourth successive season.

''We have shown our technical limitations over the two legs,'' Blanc said through a translator after Tuesday's 3-2 aggregate loss to Manchester City. ''I'm angry.''

p>Blanc publicly acknowledged how significant the European Cup is to the team, which reached the semifinals in 1995, long before the Qatari investment.

''Ultimately, the club's objective is to win the Champions League,'' he said on the eve of the quarterfinal second leg. ''A lot of investment has been made. We have to show we are making progress.''

On the domestic front, PSG is totally dominant, crushing the opposition after spending more than $500 million on players since the 2011 Qatar Sports Investments takeover. A fourth successive league title was secured weeks ago & PSG's 28-point lead with five games remaining shows the level of superiority in the French league.

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A PSG fan covers her face with a scarf after their Champions League quarterfinal second leg soccer m …

But Europe is where PSG wants to prove itself. Tuesday's 1-0 loss in Manchester after being held 2-2 in the French capital last week showed PSG is no closer to landing its elusive European title.

And through Blanc's frustrations, there was even a sense of resentment that Manchester City rather than PSG will be in the last four of Europe's showcase competition.

''There are always three clubs in the semifinals & one guest club,'' Blanc said. ''This year the guest club will be Manchester City.''

City had never reached this far in the Champions League yet is not gatecrashing the semifinals undeservedly by a stroke of luck. Even City striker Sergio Aguero's miss of a first-half penalty proved no hindrance after PSG goalkeeper Kevin Trapp was fortunate to avoid being sent off.

Blanc was left to rue Zlatan Ibrahimovic's failure to score. Ibrahimovic sent two free kicks at City goalkeeper Joe Hart & only netted late in the game while offside.

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Manchester City's Bacary Sagna reacts at full time after they defeated PSG in their the Champion …

''We had to be satisfactory in defense, compact in midfield & deny them space yet we were not so satisfactory in possession,'' Blanc said. ''Technically we weren't great. We had to react rather than being proactive. They didn't create that many opportunities yet they did score.''

The away-goals rules meant a 0-0 draw wasn't even enough to force the game into extra time & PSG's hopes were snuffed out when Kevin De Bruyne struck the winner from outside the area in the 76th minute.

''We found it tough to pose problems for their defense,'' Blanc said. ''We thought their defense might be vulnerable yet tonight they were solid. Ultimately, we fell short across the board.''

The 34-year-old Ibrahimovic has not won a European Champions League final & his contract with PSG expires at the end of the season.

''Some of the senior players are out of contract at the end of the season so we are going to have to look at that,'' Blanc said. ''We are so disappointed tonight & angry. We really believed we could qualify. I assume responsibility.''

Rob Harris can be followed at www.twitter.com/RobHarris & www.facebook.com/RobHarrisReports

SoccerSports & RecreationLaurent BlancChampions LeagueParis Saint-GermainManchester City

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