Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel thinks that superstar Neymar’s injury picked up in Bordeaux is “the same as last time” and does not expect the Brazil international to be fit to face Strasbourg away in Ligue 1 on Wednesday.
Neymar scored the opener and was denied a seemingly clear penalty in the first half of PSG’s 2-2 draw away at Bordeaux on Sunday and was withdrawn after 57 minutes having pulled up following a sprint.
The Brazil international returned from the break with his national team with a strained right adductor, and Tuchel believes it could be more of the same for Neymar.
“I think that it is the same injury as last time — we will see,” said Tuchel after the final whistle. “I do not think that Neymar will be there for Strasbourg, but I hope to have him back for Montpellier.
“I have not seen Neymar yet. However, everybody agreed — him, the fitness staff and the physiotherapists — that there was no risk in him playing. I thought that he had recovered from his last injury.”
Although Neymar, Angel Di Maria and Juan Bernat were among those limping through the mixed zone after the game, captain Thiago Silva said that there is “no point worrying too much” and that his compatriot will undergo “some tests on Monday.”
“I did not see Neymar when I left the pitch, but it is normal that he was a little worried,” Silva said. “He will take some tests on Monday. He is in a bit of pain but as long as we are not sure what is up, there is no point in worrying too much.”
While Marquinhos was “unsure” what Neymar has done and stressed that PSG “need him” for important matches later this month, Marco Verratti confessed that he is “a little worried.”
“I am a little worried,” said the Italy international “We need him to recover. We know that he was not 100 percent against Liverpool but that he did everything to be there. We know that Belgrade will be important, so we must wait and see.”
Tuchel also blasted the absence of a video assistant referree during the encounter and claimed that both potential PSG penalties should have been awarded.
“Incredible! We stop five minutes to see if goals should count or not, but we did not even get to see the replays for two blatant penalties that were not given,” Tuchel said. “I have to explain this 2-2 draw to my players!
“We will pick through this, but they are both blatant penalties. It is complicated, the first penalty could have made it 2-0 and then it would all be over — the same at 3-1. We did not find the decisive goal, which was a shame.”
Skipper Silva added that he and his PSG teammates are “not machines” ahead of a busy December schedule that includes a trip to Belgrade to take on Red Star in Champions League Group C’s final round of fixtures.
“After Strasbourg, we have some other important matches, including Red Star in the Champions League in Belgrade,” said the South American. “We needed to mix things up because we are not machines.
“Some players need a bit of rest to come back stronger. Our goal is to reach the Champions League latter stages, so we need to be 100 percent.”
PSG travel to Strasbourg and then host Montpellier next week before travelling to Serbia to face Red Star.