When Paris Saint-Germain was founded in 1970, it wouldn’t be long before the capital club established itself as a major force in French football. Just sixteen years later, the side won their first Ligue Un title, overcoming Nantes by three points.
Since Nasser Al-Khelaifi became president, PSG has dominated Ligue 1, winning the last six titles in a row. Les Rouge et Bleu are currently well on their way to becoming the most successful side in the nation. With a star-studded lineup, European glory is next on PSG’s agenda.
The PSG faithful are as demanding as they come, having witnessed the sport’s very best grace their pitch over their rich 50-year history. The Parc des Princes has been home to some of the very best French and foreign talents and has never shied away from welcoming players from beyond their borders.
Choosing a collection of the best players to ever play for PSG is a difficult proposition, particularly when you consider the superstars who enjoyed brief, but unforgettable stints at the club. Ronaldinho’s two seasons were a sight to be hold, as was Youri Djorkaeff’s lone season. Neymar is in his third season of starring for the club, and could find himself on the all-time greats list if he sticks around rather than leaving this summer, as some think he might.
As impressive as those three were, this squad consists of players who spent at least three full seasons at the club. Here.
Here is a look at Paris Saint Germain’s All-Time Best XI:
The French custodian joined Paris Saint-Germain in 1992 and was immediately tasked with replacing fan-favorite Joël Bats. Lama slowly won the French faithful over and delivered a Ligue Un title in his second season with the club, conceding a mere 22 goals.
Nicknamed ‘le Chat’, the cat, for his agility and lightning quick reflexes, Lama was known for his extraordinary athleticism. In his eight years with the club, the goalkeeper made 318 appearances and won five titles, including a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup and two Coupe de France trophies. He also represented France 44 times, hoisting a World Cup and a European Championship.
Paris Saint-Germain spent little over four million euros to secure Heinze’s signature and the Argentine had an immediate impact. Paired alongside his idol, Mauricio Pochettino, the duo formed a resolute partnership at the heart of defense.
Capable of playing at left back or in central defense, Heinze’s versatility meant he was crucial to Luis Fernández’s setup, making 132 appearances in his three-year stint with the club. The no-nonsense defender was mainly known for his combative nature and chipped with decisive goals along the way. He won two titles with the French giants before joining Manchester United.
The defender signed his first professional contract with the club in 1975 after spending most of his youth career with Morangis, another Parisian based outfit. An elegant defender by nature, Pilorget was mainly known for his anticipation and excellent timing.
The Paris native was pivotal to their Ligue 1 triumph in 1986. In fact, Pilorget is the only player alongside goalkeeper Joël Bats to have featured in every game in their title-winning season. The defender is currently the club’s all-time leader for appearances, featuring 435 times over the course of 14 years for the French giants.
Initially presented by Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi as the best defender in the world, the Brazilian has not disappointed. Since arriving in 2012, Thiago Silva has captained the club to 20 titles, including six Ligue Un trophies.
The veteran defender has made 310 appearances in PSG’s red and blue and is one of the only active players to feature in this side. Today, Thiago Silva remains one of the most complete defenders and has undoubtedly been Paris Saint-Germain’s leader over the past decade.
The fullback joined PSG in 2012 and quickly established himself as the club’s first choice left back ahead of Siaka Tiéné. Maxwell spent five seasons with the French giants, winning fourteen titles including four Ligue Un trophies. Comfortable in possession, the Brazilian was a regular force down the left and combined wonderfully with Ezequiel Lavezzi.
The former Barcelona man wasn’t a flashy fullback by any means but offered the Parisians some much-needed solidity on the left. Maxwell made 145 appearances for the club and scored 11 goals before retiring. Today, he is the club’s assistant sporting director.
Shortly after joining PSG in 1982, the Bosnian midfielder announced himself to the rest of the world. In his first season with the club, Sušić established himself as the heartbeat of the side and led the French giants to the Coupe de France. He was later named the Ligue Un Foreign Player of the Year.
In his nine seasons with PSG, the former Sarajevo man registered 95 assists in 344 appearances, which remains a club record today. Sušić is currently third on the club’s all-time appearance list behind only Jean-Marc Pilorget and Sylvain Armand. In 1985, Sušić helped the Parisians to their first ever French title.
The Brazilian playmaker joined PSG with high expectations and delivered on his promise. Tasked with linking the midfield to attack, Raí quickly became essential in Fernández’s setup. In his 145 appearances for the club, the São Paulo native scored 72 goals, helping PSG to seven titles, including a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup and a league title in 1994.
Known for his elegance and invention in possession, Raí was your typical number 10. The Brazilian proved decisive throughout his five-year stint with the club, scoring the winner in the French League Cup final against Bastia and notched a brace in the return leg of the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup to overcome Parma.
Fernández signed his first professional contract with PSG at the age of 19 and spent the first eight seasons of his career with the side. When he first joined, the Spaniard made a name for himself as a midfield destroyer but was often deployed in central defense.
Elegant in possession, the midfielder was an integral piece to their title-winning side in 1986, pulling the strings from deep. Throughout his eight seasons with the club, Fernández won one Ligue 1 championship, the club's first ever, and made 225 appearances.
After his retirement, Fernández returned to the club as a coach, leading PSG to five titles.
After spending four seasons under Arsène Wenger’s tutelage in Monaco, Weah signed with Paris Saint-Germain. The forward quickly established himself as one of the most prolific forwards in the world in the French capital, scoring 14 goals in his first season.
Two years later, Weah finished as the top scorer of the 1994-1995 Champions League, propelling the French giants to the semifinals. In his three seasons with the club, Weah won four titles, including one Ligue Un trophy and scored 49 goals in all competitions.
The Swedish striker joined alongside Thiago Silva in 2012 and led PSG’s frontline to devastating effect. Capable of scoring with both feet all-while dominating in the air, Ibrahimović is one of the most complete strikers to have worn PSG’s kit over the years.
In his last season with the club, Ibra broke the record for most goals in one season, notching 50 strikes. Before joining Manchester United on a free transfer, Ibrahimović netted 156 goals and 53 assists in 180 appearances helping PSG to 12 titles, including four Ligue Un trophies.
The Uruguayan hitman joined PSG in 2013 from Napoli and has since established himself one of the best forwards of the last decade. At the time, his signing was the most expensive in French football history. In 2018, Cavani became the club's all-time leading goalscorer.
A hard-working forward with a keen eye for goal, Cavani has since been dubbed El Matador due his goalscoring prowess. In his seven seasons with the club, the former Palermo man has scored 200 goals in 301 appearances and has won 18 trophies, including five Ligue 1 championships.