Paris Saint-Germain are getting close to a decision over a new deal for Kylian Mbappe, the club's sporting director Leonardo has revealed.

The Frenchman, who has scored 90 goals in just 100 appearances for PSG since arriving from Monaco in 2017, will be one year out from the expiry of his contract when the current season comes to a close.

As such, in the event that new terms cannot be agreed, PSG would need to sanction a transfer this close-season if they are to avoid losing Mbappe for free.

However, Leonardo remains relaxed about ongoing discussions, even if he admitted that a conclusion will need to be reached soon.

"On Kylian Mbappe's contract, we've been talking for a long time," the Brazilian told France Bleu.

"Before, it was mainly to be clear about our position and what we want. There, I think we are getting to the point where we must take a position and a decision.

"We have a good opening of dialogue."

Like Mbappe, Neymar is also less than 18 months out from the expiry of his deal with the French champions.

Leonardo is keen to find a resolution on that front, too, and hopes to find an agreement with Angel Di Maria and Juan Bernat over new terms.

He added: "Neymar, it is on the right track, but in the end, he decides after the signing and it is not yet the case.

"We arrive at the right time I think, same thing for Di Maria and Bernat. These are the four issues we are discussing. 

"The idea is to get there as quickly as possible, because on our side, we have the intention to renew all four."

Ligue 1 winners in seven of the last eight seasons, PSG currently sit in third place, four points off the pace set by leaders Lille and a point behind second-placed Lyon.

On the thrilling race that awaits, Leonardo said: "We will surely have an exciting end to the season. 

"Paris is one of the favorites to win the title: we are not going to say that we do not think of winning and that we do not feel in the conditions to do so. 

"After, if we look at the last days, Lyon, Lille and Monaco have a very important winning streak. But the ambition and the objectives remain the same."

Lionel Messi has been encouraged by Ronald Koeman's impact since becoming Barcelona coach but feels the club is so financially crippled that "it will be difficult to get back where it was".

Messi was speaking to La Sexta in one of his first interviews since telling the club of his desire to leave in August. 

Barca stood firm back then, refusing to allow him to depart despite Messi insisting the get-out clause in his contract was still valid – the Argentinian ultimately opted against pursuing the matter any further. 

Although he stayed put, Messi's future and mindset have been constant sources of debate in the four months since. 

The highly publicised interview, which aired in full on Sunday, saw Messi vow not to decide on his future until the end of the season despite being able to discuss a free transfer with another club in less than a week. 

And while there are plenty of fans unimpressed by Koeman's start with the club - they sit fifth after 14 games - Messi was complimentary about the Dutchman. 

"I think that with Ronald Koeman, he has projected a seriousness and an idea of what he wants for his team and what he wants for the club," Messi said. 

"I think that it was a great success and that he is doing things very well. At the beginning it was difficult because there were a lot of new people, a lot of young players, but little by little the team is growing." 

One aspect that some believe could count in Barca's favour with respect to Messi's future is the fact a new president will be in place by the end of January, with Joan Laporta the favourite to succeed Josep Maria Bartomeu and take charge for a second time. 

But Messi certainly does not envy anyone stepping into such a position, given the state of Barca financially, and suggested fans should not get their hopes up about the prospect of Neymar returning. 

"For this [the club's finances] it is a difficult time for the club, as it is everyone," he continued. "But from what we know, the club is really bad [financially] – very bad. It will be difficult to get back where it was.

"It won't be easy for the new president because they will find a very difficult situation at the club. It won't be easy to turn it around. 

"I hope whoever wins [the election] does things well to put this great club where it deserves to be - and where it isn't at the moment. 

"It will also be difficult to bring players because we need money and there is no money. There are several important players [required] to fight again for everything, and those players you have to pay them big money. 

"I was laughing because you said Neymar must be very expensive. And how do you pay PSG for that transfer?" 

Messi then also hit out once again at Barca's "crazy" decision to let Luis Suarez leave to Atletico Madrid, whom he has helped to the top of LaLiga. 

"I had already decided [I wanted to leave] before that," Messi mused.

"But it did seem crazy to me what they did with Luis, speaking in the specific case of Luis, because of how things were done, because of how he left, and because he left for free, paying him for the remaining years of his contract and giving him to a team that was going to fight for the same titles as us."

Ronald Koeman has told Barcelona senior figures to stop making public declarations about the touchy subject of Lionel Messi's future.

The head coach spoke out after interim president Carlos Tusquets said this week the club should have sold Messi during the close season.

Candidates for the Barcelona presidency have also spoken at length about the 33-year-old Argentinian, but Koeman believes it is unhelpful for such figures to fuel speculation.

At the same time, Koeman said in his news conference on Friday that Barcelona supporters would always want to have the best players at the club, in response to Neymar's suggestion he wished to be reunited with Messi.

But when it comes to talking to the media about Messi, who is into the final year of his contract with his future plans unclear, Koeman says the time has come for the commentary coming out of Barcelona to stop.

"We know the situation with Leo," Koeman said. "If there is someone who can say, it is Leo himself, the comments from outside do not interest me.

"If we make them within the club they do not help us to have peace of mind to do our work. We cannot control the comments from the outside, from the inside it is different."

Barcelona play Cadiz in LaLiga on Saturday and are already well off the pace this season, with any distractions to team harmony considered highly unhelpful.

Asked about Tusquets' remarks, Koeman said: "I respect opinions, but Messi must decide his future and I don't like comments in that sense."

The message from Koeman was clear: that he will stay out of the business of the presidential candidates and they should avoid being disruptive to his job of running the team.

"I have already said several times that I am not worried because I do not know what will happen in the elections," he said. "When it is known, we will talk. Until then, the best thing I can do is focus on the games."

When asked about the possibility of Messi and Neymar playing on the same side again, Koeman expressed cautious enthusiasm.

The Paris Saint-Germain forward, who spent four years at Barcelona before Paris Saint-Germain bought him out of his contract in 2017 for €222million, said this week that he wished to play on the same team as Messi next year.

"I don't like to talk about individual cases, but as a cule [a Barcelona fanatic] you want to see the best in your team," Koeman said.

Brazil coach Tite praised the performance of Neymar and was pleased at Roberto Firmino's contribution in the 5-0 thrashing of Bolivia. 

Liverpool forward Firmino scored twice as Brazil opened their World Cup qualifying campaign in impressive fashion, despite having not played an international fixture in nearly 12 months. 

Marquinhos and Philippe Coutinho also scored, with Bolivia not helping their cause with an own goal in the rout in Sao Paulo. 

Neymar did not score but was influential throughout, the Paris Saint-Germain forward showing no signs of the back problem that had bothered him during the build-up to the game. 

"We seek knowledge, strategies, [to play] with harmony," Tite said after the resounding victory. 

"Neymar was looser, more central, with freedom of movement, as the opponent's marking is more demanding.  

"Coutinho played inside, with Firmino not far behind. He [Firmino] did not seek the ball so much, he waited for it more.  

"He scored two and could have had two more. As the game requires, we may not change the function of the team, but adapt it to suit."

Brazil are next in action on Tuesday, when they are away to Peru. 

Tite will hope his side can be just as clinical on their travels in what will be a repeat of the 2019 Copa America final in Rio de Janeiro, a game the Selecao won 3-1 to lift the trophy.

"It is a feature to maintain possession of the ball. But there is no use getting the ball and finishing little," the Brazil boss added in his press conference.

Paris Saint-Germain have given their full backing to Neymar after he accused Marseille defender Alvaro of racially abusing him and have called for a full investigation to be launched.

Brazil superstar Neymar was one of five players sent off amid an ugly fracas at the end of Sunday's Classique, which Marseille won 1-0 at the Parc des Princes.

A VAR check showed Neymar striking Alvaro on the back of the head and he later posted on Twitter to say his only regret was not hitting his opponent in the face after alleging he was subjected to a racial slur.

Alvaro denied the claims with his own post on social media, to which Neymar responded angrily.

PSG want French Football's governing body the Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP) to look into the allegations and said in a statement on their website: "Paris Saint-Germain strongly supports Neymar Jr, who reported being subjected to racist abuse by an opposing player.

"The club restates that there is no place for racism in society, in football or in our lives and calls on everyone to speak out against all forms of racism throughout the world.

"For more than 15 years the club has been strongly committed to the fight against all forms of discrimination alongside its partners SOS Racisme, Licra and Sportitude.

"Paris Saint-Germain looks forward to the LFP's Disciplinary Commission to investigate and ascertain the facts, and the club remains at the LFP's disposal for any assistance required."

Neymar says it will be "impossible" to stop Paris Saint-Germain winning the Champions League if they replicate the never-say-die spirit shown in a remarkable 2-1 victory over Atalanta.

The French champions were heading for a shock defeat in Wednesday's quarter-final in Lisbon as they trailed to Mario Pasalic's first-half strike heading into injury time.

However, Marquinhos scored a fortuitous equaliser in the 90th minute and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting converted from close range 149 seconds later to complete the turnaround.

Despite being on the brink of elimination at the hands of surprise package Atalanta, Neymar insists he never feared crashing out of the competition.

"I never thought of elimination, I never thought of going home," he told RMC Sport. "From start to finish, we thought about qualifying for the semi-finals. 

"No-one is going to take my mind off that - I want to go to the final. Another level will come from us. 

"We are very happy, we are experiencing very strong things. We are a great group, a family, with this state of mind it's impossible to eliminate us.

"We never gave up, even in difficult circumstances. The desire that I have to win the Champions League was present long before this match, it never left."

PSG are into their first semi-final since the 1994-95 season, with RB Leipzig or Atletico Madrid their opponents in Lisbon on Sunday, and Neymar is desperate to go all the way.

"There is one game left to go to the final. We will give everything, we will do everything to win," he said.

"It was difficult - Atalanta is a great team, which has played well all season and have been the surprise of the competition. 

"We knew that they were very aggressive, that they pressed all over the pitch. They played really well, so we are very happy with what we did. 

"Now we're going to rest because this was a mentally exhausting match."

Kylian Mbappe and Neymar were both on target as Paris Saint-Germain ramped up their preparations for the 2019-20 run-in with a 4-0 friendly victory over Celtic. 

PSG's Ligue 1 season was curtailed by the coronavirus pandemic - as was Celtic's similarly successful league campaign in Scotland - but the French champions have a series of key fixtures still to come. 

Thomas Tuchel's side return to competitive action in Friday's Coupe de France final against Saint-Etienne, before facing Lyon a week later in the last Coupe de la Ligue showpiece. 

Of surely greater concern to PSG, though, is the Champions League quarter-final tie with Atalanta that lies ahead next month as part of an eight-team tournament in Lisbon. 

PSG are warming up nicely for that tough test and initially threatened to run up the score against Celtic, having put nine and seven past Le Havre and Waasland Beveren respectively. 

Those allowed inside the Parc des Princes saw Mbappe - sporting the new PSG strip with his team-mates - race through and blast beyond Scott Bain with less than a minute played. 

Celtic, completing a tour of France following a draw with Nice and defeat to Lyon, did not collapse entirely, though Neymar struck with a deflected 15-yard shot later in the first half. 

The start to the second period saw PSG change their entire XI but it was similarly painful for the visitors, who quickly fell further behind as Ander Herrera beat Bain with a powerful drive. 

A magnificent Pablo Sarabia volley from Marco Verratti's chipped pass then made it four. 

Meanwhile, PSG have confirmed another game to add to their schedule, playing second-tier Sochaux on August 5 ahead of the highly anticipated trip to Portugal.

Neymar is Lionel Messi's "natural replacement" and would love to return to Barcelona, according to Brazil World Cup winner Mazinho.

Brazil superstar Neymar departed Camp Nou for a world-record move to Paris Saint-Germain ahead of the 2017-18 season but has consistently been linked with a move back to Barca.

Despite regular speculation ahead of the 2019-20 campaign, Neymar remained in the French capital and has scored 18 goals in 22 appearances across all competitions this term.

Neymar is once again being tipped to join Barca, though it was said at the time he left the club in part to try and escape the shadow of superstar team-mate and now six-time Ballon d'Or winner Messi.

But Mazinho feels the 28-year-old is ready to come back and is capable of taking on Messi's mantle as Barca's talisman.

Speaking to Radio Marca, he said: "[Barcelona] would be delighted if he can return tomorrow.

"He is Messi's natural replacement. There is no other to replace Messi."

Mazinho's son Thiago Alcantara is part of a Bayern Munich side who returned to training this week amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Bundesliga champions trained in small groups without contact and Mazinho, who was part of the 1994 World Cup-winning Brazil team, said he trusts the club have taken appropriate measures.

"[Playing football amid the coronavirus outbreak] is worrying because it is a complicated situation that we are all experiencing," he added.

"In Germany they are progressing in that sense, with group training.

"You have to be very careful with all this. If Bayern do it, they do it because there is no risk and they are providing security to all their footballers.

"My son must work and be as prudent as possible."

Paris Saint-Germain were firmly on course to claim a seventh Ligue 1 title in eight years before the coronavirus pandemic meant the season was shutdown.

Thomas Tuchel's side had also progressed into the Champions League quarter-finals having edged past a vibrant Borussia Dortmund 3-2 on aggregate.

The second leg of that contest saw PSG win 2-0 in the French capital with Neymar netting the opener with a rare header.

It has been a strong season from the Brazil international with 17 goals in 21 games in all competitions.

Here, he picks his top five moments of 2019-20.


5 - The Dortmund comeback (March 11, 2020)

Having lost the first leg of their last-16 tie 2-1 in Germany, PSG needed the kind of comeback that hasn't always been their hallmark in the Champions League.

And it was Neymar who set them on their way with a diving header from Angel Di Maria's 28th-minute corner.

Juan Bernat made it 2-0 on the night as the hosts went through before celebrating wildly with fans that had congregated outside the Parc des Princes, defying orders around coronavirus.

"I was anxious for this game," Neymar told NN Consultoria.

"The days before that were some of the tensest. But I believe that, above all else, the group was united and every player, from the most experienced ones to the youngest, were all essential for this victory.

"The night was special. It looked like the Libertadores! The crowd outside the stadium received us on the streets with an unbelievable party."

 


4 - Lyon crushed (March 4, 2020)

Neymar was happy to play a supporting role as a Kylian Mbappe hat-trick inspired PSG to a 5-1 thrashing of Lyon in the Coupe de France semi-final.

Neymar and Pablo Sarabia also netted as PSG again confirmed their domestic superiority.

"Lyon cause us trouble in every game we play against them," said Neymar.

"The score doesn't show how hard this game was. This game was Mbappe's and he was essential in the victory."


3 - Neymar double honours Kobe (January 26, 2020)

As news of a helicopter crash involving NBA legend Kobe Bryant circulated on social media, Neymar paid his respects with a brace as PSG won 2-0 at Lille.

The former Barcelona star opened the scoring following a one-two with Marco Verratti before adding a second-half penalty.

"Kobe’s death affected me a lot," said Neymar.

"I had the pleasure of meeting him and learning from this star of sport, an idol for me. We got to know what happened during half-time. We were very sad, really sad. It was a tough game and the news, instead of knocking us down, made us bigger."


2 - Late joy at Lyon (September 22, 2019)

PSG moved three points clear at the top of Ligue 1 after Neymar grabbed an 87th-minute winner at Lyon.

The hosts withstood some strong PSG pressure but could do little as Neymar turned beautifully in the box to fire into the corner.

"There was lots of pressure on this game, but at the end of it the goal came," Neymar said.

"I received a pass from Di María and, thanks to God, I made the right option and was very happy. I turned my body around and got it on my left foot. An important goal."

 


1 - Silencing the critics (September 14, 2019)

Having missed the first four Ligue 1 games of the season after attempting to engineer a move back to Barcelona, Neymar made a stunning return.

He was booed by the Parc des Princes faithful when his name was read out, and throughout a tense encounter, but the Brazilian had the final say.

With the game in injury-time, Neymar latched on to Abdou Diallo's cross and conjured up an incredible overhead kick to win the game.

He said: "I needed a goal at any cost, it was very important for me and for PSG. I knew that a goal could change the history of this season, so I chased it with all I had.

"It was almost at the end of the game when Diallo launched the ball, there was no choice other than to try a bicycle kick. God blessed me and the ball went in.

"I put this goal as one of the most important goals of my career."

Luis Suarez views Barcelona's reported interest in fellow forwards Neymar and Lautaro Martinez as an encouraging sign.

Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar continues to be linked with a return to Camp Nou having won two LaLiga titles and a Champions League playing alongside Suarez during his previous stint at the club.

He is not the only striker reportedly on Barca's radar, though, with Inter's Martinez another attacker thought to be considered an intriguing prospect to the Blaugrana hierarchy.

Rather than see such speculation as a threat to his place in the team, Suarez has given his approval to those pursuits.

"It is difficult to talk about players today," he told Mundo Deportivo. 

"As is the situation in the world today, talking about who can come because of how everything is complicated. But I can speak about what these players are like and they are huge players. 

"Obviously, Ney, everyone knows him and we know the appreciation that we have for him in the dressing room, which as a player is indisputable because he still has a lot to give and in the dressing room he would always be welcome because of the affection he has. 

"Lautaro is a player who has been growing a lot in Italy, he is a 'nine' who has movements that are spectacular and that reflects how great a striker he is. 

"It is not that you feel compatible but that you feel happy that the club wants to incorporate players who come to help and fulfil the same objective of everyone - that of wanting to win everything. 

"Then when it comes to healthy competition in the team, which there will always, we will always be on the same side. 

"So players who come to fight for a place and help the team will always be welcome, it will always be better and it will strengthen the group."

Paris Saint-Germain superstar Neymar said he was deeply affected by the death of Los Angeles Lakers great Kobe Bryant.

Bryant, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were tragically killed in a helicopter crash in January, along with seven others in Calabasas, California.

Neymar paid tribute to Bryant at the time, wearing a jersey in honour of the five-time NBA champion, while he dedicated a goal to the 2008 MVP by holding up two fingers on one hand and four on the other – referencing the famous number 24 – in a Ligue 1 victory over Lille in February.

Recalling Bryant's death, Neymar told Vogue Men Arabia: "His death affected me a lot because our lives had much in common.

"I met Kobe personally and the times he came to Paris. When you meet the person behind the athlete, it creates a different relationship and with Kobe, it was very special. Sports and society lost a great guy."

Neymar, who continues to be linked with a return to former club Barcelona, has been hampered by injuries since joining PSG in a world-record €222million transfer in 2017.

"There is nothing worse for a professional athlete than an injury," the Brazilian forward added.

"I really suffered with injuries these last two seasons and I had many moments of questioning myself.

"Half of the success of an athlete is the mind. If the mind is good, the game flows more naturally."

Barcelona have been warned against pandering to their players' apparent desire to see Neymar return to the club, with former Spain and Real Madrid boss Vicente del Bosque adamant he does not set a "good example".

Neymar spent four years at Camp Nou until 2017, when he left for Paris Saint-Germain as the most expensive player of all time in a €222million move.

While the Brazilian has undoubtedly caught the eye in Paris, scoring 47 goals and setting up another 26 in just 52 Ligue 1 matches, rarely has he appeared happy.

A return to Spain with Barca or Real Madrid has often been mooted, though reports linking him with his former club have been significantly more prominent in the past year.

Del Bosque, a Madrid icon and World Cup-winning coach with Spain, thinks he is a problem and cautioned the Barca hierarchy against caving into the supposed demands of players who reportedly want Neymar back in Catalonia.

"It is the clubs that must decide who to sign and who not to sign," Del Bosque told Mundo Deportivo.

"You should not pay attention to what the players say, for that there are sports directors and technical secretaries. It is very difficult for a footballer to speak ill of another footballer who has been his team-mate. I don't remember almost anyone who has.

"[Neymar] is a difficult boy. For me he is not a good example, and for the record, for me he is great as a player.

"If you ask me to tell you the top five in the world, he is safely on my list, but on the pitch he tries to cheat, he simulates a lot. And also, how did he leave Barcelona?"

Neymar has thanked health workers for their efforts in combating the spread of coronavirus.

Most of the world's population, including footballers such as Paris Saint-Germain and Brazil star Neymar, are being encouraged to remain at home to limit the impact of the global pandemic.

Yet doctors and nurses remain on the frontline in the fight against coronavirus.

Earlier this week residents in Italy and Spain, who are in lockdown, showed their appreciation for health personnel by applauding in unison in events coordinated on social media.

Neymar has followed suit with a video of him clapping uploaded onto his social media account.

His caption read: "A big round of applause to all health professionals.

"Thank you for risking your lives #StayHome"

There have been over 246,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the world and over 10,000 people have died.

Liverpool's Champions League title defence is in the balance ahead of Wednesday's last-16 second leg with Atletico Madrid, but Jurgen Klopp's home record with the Reds highlights the task facing Los Colchoneros.

The Spanish side won 1-0 thanks to an early Saul Niguez effort at the Wanda Metropolitano, with Atletico producing a quintessential Diego Simeone display as they fought to cling on to a slender win.

Their approach is unlikely to change at Anfield, but Klopp boasts an impressive record on Merseyside.

In the other of Wednesday's games, Borussia Dortmund take a 2-1 lead over Paris Saint-Germain to Parc des Princes, setting the second leg up tantalisingly with Erling Haaland eying a slice of history - though there will not be any fans in attendance due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

Below are the key match facts, courtesy of Opta, ahead of the two finely-poised contests.

Liverpool v Atletico Madrid

2 - On each of the previous two occasions Liverpool have lost away from home in the first leg of a Champions League knockout tie, they have progressed to the next round; the Reds eliminated Chelsea and Barcelona in the semi-finals in 2006-07 and 2018-19, respectively.

0 - Klopp is yet to lose a home Champions League game with Liverpool (W11 D4). His most recent two home defeats in the competition have been in last-16 matches with Borussia Dortmund in 2013-14 (1-2 v Zenit) and 2014-15 (0-3 v Juventus).

1 - Atletico have won just one of their previous nine away Champions League knockout games (W1 D2 L6), a 4-2 win at Bayer Leverkusen in February 2017.

7 - Roberto Firmino has been directly involved in seven goals in five Champions League knockout appearances at Anfield (3 goals, 4 assists), averaging a goal involvement every 54 minutes.

37 - Atleti's Jan Oblak has conceded just 37 goals in his first 49 Champions League appearances. The record for the fewest goals conceded by a goalkeeper in his first 50 appearances is held by Dida (35), followed by Victor Valdes (38).

Paris Saint-Germain v Borussia Dortmund

0 - PSG have never progressed to the next stage of the Champions League after losing the first leg of a knockout tie, going out against Milan in 1994-95, Barcelona in 2014-15 and Real Madrid in 2017-18.

4 - Borussia Dortmund have always progressed to the next stage of the Champions League after winning the first leg of a knockout tie, doing so on all four previous occasions. The only team with a better 100 per cent progression rate after winning the first leg is Juventus (11/11).

5 - PSG have lost five of their previous six Champions League knockout matches (W1), losing each of their past two at the Parc des Princes against Real Madrid in March 2018 and Manchester United in 12 months later.

10 - Haaland is one of only five players to score 10 or more goals in their debut European Cup/Champions League campaign. The only player to score more than 10 was Claudio Sulser, who netted 11 goals in six appearances in 1978-79 for Grasshopper Zurich. Haaland also has the best minutes-per-goal ratio (one every 46 minutes) of any player in the competition's history to feature for at least 250 minutes.

37 - Neymar has been directly involved in 37 goals in 27 home Champions League appearances (20 for Barcelona, seven for PSG), scoring 25 goals and assisting 12. The Brazilian has never ended on the losing side in a home game in the competition (W24 D3).

Past problems between Neymar and Strasbourg players will not prevent Thomas Tuchel from including the Brazil star in Paris Saint-Germain's starting line-up this weekend. 

Neymar suffered a fractured metatarsal in a Coupe de France clash last year after being fouled three times in quick succession, with Strasbourg's Anthony Goncalves telling the forward "don't come blubbing afterwards". 

That injury kept Neymar out for three months, which meant he missed the Champions League last-16 tie with Manchester United, who progressed on away goals after a 3-3 aggregate draw. 

This weekend's fixture against Strasbourg comes just four days before the second leg of the clash with Borussia Dortmund, who won the first leg 2-1 to leave PSG facing another potential last-16 exit. 

Tuchel revealed Neymar is carrying a knock from the Coupe de France win over Lyon in midweek but, if he is fit, the PSG boss will not rest the player this weekend just because of his history with Strasbourg. 

"No, it's a football game and anything can happen," Tuchel told a news conference on Friday. 

"We can't protect them. We have a past with Strasbourg, but I can't think they can do weird things. I am not afraid. 

"He took a hit against Lyon, so we have to decide. If he's ready, he'll play." 

However, Tuchel is looking ahead to the return fixture with Dortmund when it comes to the fitness of Neymar's compatriot Thiago Silva. 

The defender has missed PSG's last two fixtures with a hamstring injury that was initially expected to force him out of the second leg against the Bundesliga side. 

Yet he has returned to training ahead of schedule, giving Tuchel hope he could actually have his captain available in the Champions League. 

"I am more optimistic," Tuchel said. 

"He has no more pain. It's the timing for him. It was possible that he might play 45 minutes [against Strasbourg]. 

"[But] it's too big a risk for Saturday with just one training session. We will have more intensity Saturday and Sunday for him here. 

"I'm waiting for Monday; we will decide after. 

"I speak with Thiago almost every day. He's completely preparing for Wednesday's game. He absolutely wants to play. 

"We will decide Tuesday or Wednesday. This is the plan. We cannot push, be impatient." 

Page 1 of 2
© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.