Unai Emery has said his defenders are among “the best in Europe” despite letting in five goals in their last two matches.
“Our defence is one of the best in Europe. We cannot look at just two matches out of 23 played — I have every confidence in my defence.”
Emery said Silva was “among the best central defenders in Europe” and played down rumours of a fight because the player felt he should have been substituted more quickly.
“I speak often with Thiago,” he said. “He is our captain. He is very professional and very experienced.
“Since the end of the game in Munich until now, I have not seen him. I chatted a bit with Thiago [Motta] and Layvin [Kurzawa] this morning, but Thiago was doing tests with the doctor.
“I have no doubt he is among the best central defenders in Europe. He is better this season than he was last. His desire is greater, and he is a positive reference point for the squad.”
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has said Neymar would have a better chance of winning the Ballon d’Or if he was playing at the Bernabeu, but Emery said: “Neymar is here, in Paris.
“I am convinced that he will achieve collective goals and that individual recognition will then follow here.”
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