BORDEAUX — Monaco boss Leonardo Jardim has publicly ruled himself out of the running to succeed Unai Emery as Paris Saint-Germain coach should Emery depart at season’s end.
The Portuguese is one of the many names to have been linked with the Parc des Princes hotseat, with the Spaniard expected to depart after a second consecutive Champions League round-of-16 exit.
However, Jardim hinted that Emery’s successor could be a compatriot of his but that it will not be him.
“Perhaps he will be Portuguese,” Jardim, speaking ahead of Saturday’s Coupe de la Ligue final, responded when quizzed over the PSG job. “However, his name will not be Leonardo Jardim.”
PSG were second in the news conference. And when Emery was asked about speculation over his future, he simply focused on taking things one day at a time.
“I have experience in football. I know this. I am making the most of each moment. We have objectives and there is a title at stake here. If there are a lot of journalists, it is an important match,” Emery said, hinting that Paris-based journalists only came to his news conferences ahead of big games.
“I have a responsibility to prepare the team well.”
Emery then praised his players for their attitude since exiting the Champions League to Real Madrid in the round of 16, and was happy that so many of his internationals have returned focused on the Coupe de la Ligue final.
“The players have trained well post-internationals,” the 46-year-old said. “With experience from last season, I think that this title is very motivating.
“The players have come back from international duty with this in mind. I am attentive, I am watching, and I am happy because I see a responsible team. Their reaction has been good — the team is over the Champions League elimination.
“This is an important moment. I hope that we will show the same spirit and win another title for the PSG supporters.”
Emery then added that, as scheduled, Neymar will return to Paris to gauge his progress after having surgery on a fractured metatarsal in his right foot.
“I have spoken with Neymar,” said the former Sevilla boss. “We spoke about the final. He will be following it. He will be coming back to Paris in two or three weeks.”
Jonathan Johnson covers PSG and the French national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @Jon_LeGossip.