Tuchel hails PSG's Verratti as one of world's best

AFP

Paris Saint-Germain head coach Thomas Tuchel hailed "extraordinary"star Marco Verratti as one of the best midfielders in the world.

Verratti signed a new five-year deal with PSG on Wednesday, having established himself as an integral member of the Ligue 1 champions since arriving in 2012.

The Italy international, who will remain in Paris until 2024, has won six Ligue 1 titles and 22 trophies in total following his transfer from Pescara.

Tuchel lauded the 26-year-old as a coach's dream ahead of Friday's trip to bottom side Dijon.

"As I often said, Marco is very important," Tuchel told reporters. "He's a key player. He's one of the best midfielders in the world.

"There is always room for improvement but he's highly reliable. He has loads of responsibilities inside the group. He always thinks about others and their happiness. He's a team player. Coaching Marco is the best that can happen to a coach.

"To give you an example, ahead of our game against Nice, he played with Italy. It was a Friday evening, both games were very close [Italy played the 15th and PSG on the 18th]. He came back on Thursday. On Friday I talked to him and he said to me: 'No, no, no! I'll play against Nice, I'll play!'. We've decided then that he will not play. Back in the training on Saturday he was there giving everything during both small and bigger exercises. We've got a small session with eight players, we walked, we played a few games…  and he trained like a youngster about maybe 18 or 19 years old trying to prove to the coach that he can play. This is what Marco is about. It shows a lot in my opinion.

"I'm delighted to be his coach. I'm really pleased he's with us because he's an extraordinary player with a very rare mindset. I think that everybody is happy he's with us."