The past two seasons have seen PSG capture consecutive domestic titles. Zlatan Ibrahimovic was the driving force behind much of this success, scoring a prolific 80 goals across all competitions during that time span.
Following the Swedish legend’s move to Manchester United this past summer, new manager Unai Emery must find a way to replace his output.
Uruguayan international Edinson Cavani looks set to step up in a bigger way for the squad in 2016-17.
His three full seasons have seen at least 20 or more goals across all competitions, but never more than 19 in league play.
While Paris Saint-Germain are still the favourite to capture the French first division, the club will need Cavani to raise his production level with the loss of Ibrahimovic.
Club owners and supporters will want to see him progress in the UEFA Champions League as well.
We look at what Edinson Cavani brings to the PSG lineup and why he could be poised for greater scoring numbers.
SIZE AND STRENGTH
One of the most important attributes that made Ibrahimovic exceptional is his height and strength. His ability to get his head on a cross makes him a dangerous weapon on corners and free kicks.
Cavani has these characteristics as well and can use them to his advantage, as he did in the first minute of PSG’s opening Champions League group stage match this week against Arsenal.
His ability to get on the end of crosses sets up Emery’s attack to be able to come at opponents in a variety of ways.
STRONG GOAL SCORING RECORD AND FITNESS
Cavani may not have put up the same numbers as Ibrahimovic over the past few years, but he has shown an excellent ability to hit the back of the net on a regular basis.
Going all the way back to the 2008-09 season with Palermo in Serie A, Cavani has scored ten or more goals for eight straight years.
He has rarely missed any matches during that span and can keep himself at optimal fitness for long periods.
A great striker requires a strong midfield for both service and coverage in their own half of the pitch when they get forward.
Cavani possesses this advantage in spades thanks to PSG’s pair of talented defensive midfielders Marco Verratti and Blaise Matuidi.
Both players have been critical components of the club’s recent success and can allow Cavani to get into the opposition’s half at will.
Verratti’s control of the ball and positioning, along with Matuidi’s non-stop work rate make it difficult for any side to break through PSG’s defence.
While Cavani certainly has big shoes to fill in terms of goals with Ibrahimovic’s departure, he has the skillset and quality teammates around him to have a fantastic season at Paris Saint-Germain in 2016-17 potentially.