European success for the last two managers to leave Paris Saint Germain is a statement in itself.
Unai Emery went on to lift the Europa League with an inferior line-up of Villareal players. Thomas Tuchel went on to win the Champions League with a talented Chelsea team.
The common denominator? Both were prepared to put a shift in. Just like Manchester United in their hard-fought win over Villareal on Tuesday night.
Mauricio Pochettino has seen enough from his egotistical front three – Messi, Neymar and Mbappe – to know that he needs to get shot of them before they do for him.
With Manchester United waiting to provide a soft landing, you can see why the former Spurs boss is willing to break the glass on the PSG exit door and go now, rather than wait until the end of the season.
Anyone who saw the way that Pochettino made Southampton and Spurs two of the toughest teams to beat in the Premier League will know that the Argentine knows how to organise a team that wants to work.
The former Spurs boss turned Tottenham ’s defence into the best in the country two seasons running, then took the north Londoners to the 2018 Champions League final.
With the talent available at United – Cristiano Ronaldo included – you could see him joining Emery and Tuchel in succeeding away from that toxic PSG dressing room.
Jamie Carragher and Thierry Henry, on TV duty for CBS Sports, articulated the trouble with PSG laid bare for all to see no Wednesday night.
“Pochettino has got to get out of that club,” said Carragher.” If he’s got the chance to go to Manchester United… I’d be gone tomorrow.
“I honestly would and it’s because of those three stars [ Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar].”
Henry weighed in: “If you want to win the Champions League, you cannot defend with seven players. It is impossible, I don’t care who you are.
“Teams that win titles and win the Champions Leagues also, you need to have your front three chasing the ball. Do at least the bare minimum.
“We saw it with Tuchel. He couldn’t make PSG defend. As soon as he arrived at Chelsea they listened.
“Everyone that left PSG went on to win in Europe – Emery and Tuchel.”
Chelsea lifted the Champions League with the best defence in the competition last season. Manchester City, with the second best back line, reached the final.
Carragher believes the way in which PSG were shown up by City’s industry on Wednesday night – despite Pep Guardiola being without three of his best players – underlines why Pochettino’s embarrassment of riches is actually fool’s gold.
“I just don’t believe teams can carry anybody now,” Carragher added. “Let’s say the four teams, of which I think one will win the Champions League – Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea or Bayern Munich – they do not carry one passenger in the team.
“They [PSG] are carrying three, they’ve got absolutely no chance of winning the Champions League, Paris Saint-Germain, absolutely no chance.
“I get frustrated watching it because with Mbappe more than anybody. I can almost understand Messi to a certain extent, he’s 34, he has to save himself for certain moments.
“But Mbappe is 22, he should be sprinting back and getting back helping his teammates against a top Man City team. This thing about walking around the pitch, it’s not for me.
“When I see [Mohamed] Salah and [Sadio] Mane for Liverpool sprinting everywhere, I see [Kevin] De Bruyne, I see [Riyaz] Mahrez, Raheem Sterling the same, Thomas Muller for Bayern Munich, [Robert] Lewandowski.
“I just can’t accept, I don’t care how good they are, that they don’t work for the team. The days of carrying passengers are long gone.”