Menez may be the key to PSG's success this season.
The PSG story over the last two years has been one of big money and high profile signings. The faces of the PSG movement have been Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Thiago Silva and Javier Pastore. Despite the talent the triumvirate possesses, the player who may hold the key to PSG's lofty goals is the less heralded Jeremy Menez.
Menez joined PSG in the shadow of the Pastore capture during the first summer of the new regime. Returning to France after three up and down seasons with Roma, Menez has flashed his tremendous ability for both club and country.
The offensive talents of Menez have never been in doubt. The one thing Menez has struggled with during his young career has been consistency. As he has matured over the last few seasons, performing at a high level has become more of the norm.
This growth is quickly transforming Menez into a key component to PSG's attack and a fan favorite in Paris. The reason Menez may be the key to PSG's transformation into a European power is his ability to run at defenders.
PSG has the likes of Pastore, Ibrahimovic and Lavezzi, who are all considered major offensive threats, but Menez may be the most direct threat in taking on defenders one-on-one. His speed keeps markers on their heels, and his technical ability allows him to remove them from the play. This puts tremendous pressure on opposing backlines and creates space for Ibrahimovic to use his colossal skill.
Perhaps the most recent example of the Menez effect on PSG was the Reims match last weekend. PSG was struggling to find rhythm against a tough-minded Reims squad. That all changed with the introduction of Menez for the injured Nene. The life Menez breathed into the PSG attack provided the spark needed to break through for a critical three points.
PSG have many players who will make them a team to be reckoned with for years to come, but the growth of their No. 7 may take them to the heights they strive for.