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Paris Saint-Germain will rest starting goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon for their next two Ligue 1 games, coach Thomas Tuchel said on Friday.

Buffon, 40, started the Trophee des Champions win over Monaco as well as Ligue 1 victories over Caen and Guingamp, but he will not play against Angers and Nimes before the international break in September.

The move will allow Alphonse Areola to get some games under his belt before he starts in the Champions League next month, and Tuchel warned the move was not an indication of his long-term plans.

“Alphonse will play against Angers and Nimes,” Tuchel explained. “After that, we will see. I am not making any long-term decisions — Alphonse needs to play.

“Gianluigi has put in three magnificent performances, so I am not dropping him. Rather, it is important in this preparatory phase that Alphonse is given a chance to play and that he adapts to the team.” 

Buffon is suspended for PSG’s first three Champions League group-stage games because of the ban he incurred while with former club Juventus, making Areola likely to start.

Areola was PSG’s first-choice keeper last season, making 34 appearances in Ligue 1 and another eight in the Champions League. 

This season’s Champions League group stage will begin on Sept. 18 and 19, with the draw set for next Thursday.


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