Shakhtar-Monaco: victory or setbacks

We thought he had proven enough to be untouchable in Paris. But this summer, PSG went to look for Gianluigi Donnarumma and put Keylor Navas with their backs to the wall. After experiencing similar competition to Real Madrid, is the 34-year-old Costa Rican doomed? His personal history suggests that he should not be buried immediately …

On June 16, an enigmatic Instagram story by Keylor Navas weighs down the mood: “Offer your absence to the one who does not value your presence. ” The Costa Rican then recently extended his contract with PSG until 2024, but the probable future signing of Gianluigi Donnarumma carries an implicit message: for Parisian decision-makers, the future is being written with the Italian international. Since then, Keylor Navas has returned to his fundamentals on social networks: a photo of him in full physical effort, protruding abs, on July 7, another very professional and corporate on August 14 to mark the occasion of a first victory at the Parc in Ligue 1 … But in the club of the capital as around, nobody is fooled: the presence of two monsters at the post of goalkeeper is as much a privilege for Mauricio Pochettino as a nest to shit. Both Gigio and Keylor officially claim to appreciate this healthy competition, their Argentine coach adopts the balancing act: ready to decide the day before each match, as he does with any outfield player. Poker liar, for almost all observers, between Keylor Navas the elder and Gianluigi Donnarumma the younger, it will be like in the cinema saga Highlander. There can only be one left. And for reasons of civil status, Prime Video consultant Thierry Henry puts a coin on the Italian. “The coach will start to sweat because there will be decisions to be made. At some point, given the age, Donnarumma will win, even though Navas did well. ” Unless…

Thibaut Courtois in the retro


Three years ago, Keylor Navas has already experienced the same situation, or almost: seasons of good man as a starter at Real Madrid, but the arrival of a competitor bankable and tinsel, one “Market opportunity” which is more of a decision of the president than of the coach. In the summer of 2018, Thibaut Courtois, a one-year contract at Chelsea, arrived at the You meringues against a check for 35 million euros, a trifle for the best goalkeeper of the Russian World Cup. Zinédine Zidane, the coach with whom he won three Champions Leagues in a row, is no longer there, so Navas is quickly invited to put his buttocks on the bench, for the benefit of the Belgian. Before becoming number one again in March, when the White House dropped two technicians – Lopetegui and Solari – and repatriated Zizou. An interview with Thierry Courtois, father of, in The last hour in the fall of 2020 allows us to understand that the duel of the titans did more damage to his son. “There was a difficult internal competition to live with, and also external with the journalists who took more part for Keylor. Once he left for PSG, it relieved Thibaut. ” To reassure his Belgian doorman, Florentino Pérez resolves to sell off the Tico in summer 2019, direction Paris. A goalkeeper who pushed the emblematic Iker Casillas towards the exit – breach of contract in the summer of 2015 -, whom Real Madrid tried to exchange with David de Gea in August 2015 and to whom the White House did not therefore never really given his consideration despite the three European consecrations of rank when the Costa Rican was in his woods.

God, difficult birth and match-fixing

A few months ago, in the official magazine of PSG, Navas indicated to feel “More affection for PSG than for Real Madrid” . He may have been reviewing his judgment in recent weeks, but if you look in the rearview mirror of his career, if not his entire life, one wonders who has most to fear from the current indecision in Paris. Donnarumma? Three seasons is a long time if the Italian does not debunk his competitor. PSG? It is with the Costa Rican goalkeeper that the club experienced its two best European courses under QSI, when it is with the same man that Real Madrid have won their last three C1. In Paris more than in Madrid, it was Navas who got everyone to agree, especially in key matches on the European scene, and put an end to the eternal debates about the goalkeeper position.

As for Navas himself, his personal story suggests that Donnarumma’s presence may irritate him at worst, but never demoralize him. The story of the Costa Rican is a succession of difficulties and frustrations: he could have died at birth because of the presence of amniotic fluid in his bronchi. Not even hurt. His parents entrusted him to his grandparents at the age of 4, to go to work in the United States, without him. He barely cried. At 12, he was considered too small to be a goalkeeper at the Municipal Pérez-Zeledon. Today, the club’s stadium bears his name. Levante leaves him on the sidelines for two seasons, before the incumbent Gustavo Munua is mired in a match-fixing scandal, Keylor Navas starts his first full season in La Liga with 14 clean sheets and 4 penalties stopped. Simple warm-up before a 2014 World Cup with Costa Rica, just before his transfer to Madrid. How does he manage to cope with all this, for so long, with an ultimately minimalist recognition in terms of his performances? “Its fundamental pillar is its faith” , explained Gabelo Conejo, goalkeeper coach of Costa Rica, in a portrait published by The weather then The world. If God is on his side, it is Donnarumma who will sweat profusely …

Nicolas jucha

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