Former Paris Saint-Germain coach Antoine Kombouare says he knew his time was up even before the club replaced him with Carlo Ancelotti.

Kombouare led PSG into first place in the French first division heading into the annual winter break, but PSG's rich Qatari owners wanted a more high-profile name and Ancelotti was hired as the club's new coach late last month.

Speaking for the first time since leaving the club, Kombouare told sports daily l'Equipe in an interview to be published Friday that ''I was not naive about the situation.''

Kombouare says he got his staff members together on the morning of the match against Saint-Etienne on Dec. 21 to tell them ''this is my last game.''