Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel on Friday said he was “sure” that Neymar would recover from his rib injury in time to play some part in the French club’s Champions League last-16 first leg against Borussia Dortmund next Tuesday.
The world’s most expensive player has been out of action with the problem since the win over Montpellier on February 1 and could miss Saturday’s game against Amiens.
But Tuchel insisted that Neymar would be fit for the clash at Signal Iduna Park.
“Whether or not he plays on Saturday (against Amiens), he will be in Dortmund, I’m sure of it, but without being in the best shape he was in two weeks ago,” said the former Dortmund boss.
“But he will help us. I am sure and convinced of that.”
Neymar missed last season’s surprise Champions League last-16 defeat by Manchester United with a foot injury, and also sat out the second leg of the loss to Real Madrid at the same stage of the competition in 2018.
PSG have still not reached the Champions League semi-finals since their Qatari owners took over in 2011.
Paris Saint-Germain’s Neymar is facing a fitness battle to feature in next week’s Champions league last 16 first leg tie at Borussia Dortmund, coach Thomas Tuchel said on Wednesday.
The world’s most expensive player has missed three matches having been sidelined with a rib injury since the victory over Montpellier on February 2.
“I can’t say that he will be 100% to play against Borussia Dortmund,” Tuchel said after the 6-1 French Cup quarter-final hammering of Dijon.
PSG will wait until the last possible moment before making a decision on the Brazilian’s chances of facing Amiens in Ligue 1 at the weekend.
“We will discuss and decide on Friday, the latest possible time to do so. We can’t risk his fitness,” Tuchel added.
The 28-year-old Neymar, who joined PSG in 2017 for 222 million euros ($250 million at the time) missed last season’s defeat to Manchester United at the same stage of the Champions League with a foot injury.
Neymar’s team-mates Marquinhos, Presnel Kimpembe, Marco Verratti and Idrissa Gueye also were unavailable for the midweek cup victory and are likely sit out Saturday’s league match at Amiens.
“We aren’t going to take risks against Amiens, it’s clear. We will have a strong team, but if we have little doubts, we won’t take risks,” Tuchel said.
The Parisians have never got further than the quarter-finals in the Champions League and travel to Dortmund on Tuesday for the first leg of the last 16 clash.
Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel on Monday attempted to play down a touchline spat with Kylian Mbappe which overshadowed the French champions’ big weekend win over Montpellier.
“There is nothing personal between him and me. These things happen,” said Tuchel after Mbappe reacted angrily to being substituted midway through the second half of PSG’s 5-0 victory at the Parc des Princes, with Mauro Icardi taking his place.
“It was between a player who does not want to come off and a coach who had his reasons for doing something, and who wanted to give a game to players who deserved it.”
After Saturday’s match, Tuchel admitted that the reaction of Mbappe “doesn’t look good” and pointed out that: “This is football, not tennis, and you have to respect everyone.”
The 21-year-old World Cup winner, who had scored his 14th league goal of the season in the victory, exchanged words with Tuchel as he came off, and then stormed to his seat on the bench, throwing away a training top in disgust.
Tuchel said he discussed the matter again at training on Sunday, with the player and with Leonardo, the club’s sporting director.
“I spoke about it yesterday with Leo, of course, and with the squad, as we generally do. But what I said will remain in the dressing room,” added Tuchel, speaking before PSG return to league action on Tuesday away to Nantes.
Returning to the incident, he added: “We had the game wrapped up, and it was a chance to take off Pablo (Sarabia) and Kylian, and put on Mauro and ‘Edi’ (Cavani), who deserved to get some minutes.
“I know it is hard to accept for some players, but these are sporting matters that they should be able to understand.”
Neymar birthday ‘not the best’ preparation
With PSG returning to action in midweek, and also having a Champions League clash with Borussia Dortmund looming ever closer on the horizon, Tuchel could also be excused for being less than impressed with Neymar’s latest off-field antics.
The Brazilian — who sported a pink hair-do in the win against Montpellier — organised a lavish celebration ahead of his 28th birthday at a Parisian nightclub in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower on Sunday, including an all-white dress code.
Tuchel insisted that the event, to which Neymar invited all his team-mates, would not have an influence on his team selection for Tuesday’s trip to face a Nantes side who sit ninth in the table.
The Brazilian, however, will not be risked due to a rib complaint, the club said late on Monday.
“I always protect my players, and I really love my team. With this party, I accept that it is a bit difficult to protect the players, but the context is not simply black or white,” Tuchel said.
“Is it the best way to prepare for a match? No, clearly not. Is it the worst thing in the world? No.
“It is a shame because we are giving people the chance to speak badly of us. We need to adapt to the situation, but I am not going to leave a player on the bench or at home because they went out and celebrated.”
PSG, who are 12 points clear of Marseille at the Ligue 1 summit, do have defensive injury problems just now, though, with Marquinhos, Thiago Silva, Juan Bernat and Colin Dagba all out of Tuesday’s game.
Midweek fixtures in Ligue 1 (kick-offs 1800 GMT unless stated)
Lille v Rennes, Monaco v Angers, Nantes v Paris Saint-Germain (2005 GMT)
Brest v Bordeaux, Lyon v Amiens, Montpellier v Metz, Nimes v Dijon, Reims v Nice, Toulouse v Strasbourg, Saint-Etienne v Marseille (2000 GMT)
Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel has extended his deal with the French Ligue 1 champions through to June 2021, the club announced on Saturday.
The 45-year-old German took over in June 2018 and despite winning Ligue 1 has come under scrutiny after the Parisian club’s defeat to Manchester United in the Champions League last 16.
The news cuts short speculation that PSG’s Qatari owners would fire Tuchel and hire outgoing Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri.
“I’m delighted to extend my contract and commitment to Paris Saint-Germain,” Tuchel said.
“I’d like to thank the chairman and the whole club for their trust in me and my staff. This only reinforces my ambition to bring this team to the very top through hard work,” he told the club website
“I’m also very touched by the backing of our supporters, and I’m sure that the best is yet to come for our club.”
Nasser al-Khelaifi, Paris Saint-Germain chairman and CEO, praised Tuchel’s energy and modus operandi.
“For a year now, Thomas has been bringing fantastic energy to the daily life of the club, not only for the players, but for the whole of Paris Saint-Germain,” the Qatari said.
“We are delighted to be able to rely on his qualities on a long-term basis.”
Tuchel was appointed last year on a two-year deal to succeed Unai Emery. He had been widely praised for his work at the Parc des Princes, but another elimination from the Champions League in the first knockout round had raised questions.
PSG had been desperate to make progress in Europe after being knocked out of the Champions League last 16 in back-to-back seasons under Emery.
They looked on course to reach the quarter-finals after a 2-0 win away to United in the first leg, but a 3-1 home loss at the Parc des Princes knocked them out on away goals.
The nature of their defeat, especially coming two years after their capitulation against Barcelona at the same stage, has seen PSG widely labelled as bottlers, incapable of dealing with the tension on the big stage.
Paris Saint-Germain coach Thomas Tuchel has admitted that signing a top-class midfielder remains “a priority” for the French giants after their weaknesses were exposed in another below-par performance in the Champions League.
PSG snatched a 2-2 draw at home against Napoli in midweek thanks to Angel di Maria’s injury-time goal, but before that, they were outmuscled in the centre of the pitch.
Tuchel’s team also disappointed in a 3-2 defeat at Liverpool last month, and their hopes of reaching the knockout rounds are in the balance.
Those games have exposed a lack of strength in depth in midfield, with PSG missing out on targets such as Fabinho and Axel Witsel in the recent past — that duo ended up joining Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund respectively.
At times this season, Brazilian defender Marquin has been used in midfield, where PSG’s only specialists are Adrien Rabiot and Marco Verratti.
But PSG have been hamstrung by UEFA’s Financial Fair Play regulations ever since spending more than 400 million euros ($457m) on Neymar and Kylian Mbappe last year.
“Yes, it is a priority. It was a priority and it still is because it is dangerous to always use Adri and Marco,” said Tuchel on Saturday.
“It is too much at this level. We need a third top-level player to be able to play a 4-3-3.
“You can only play what you have. I am still convinced Marquinhos can play a big, big role for us.”
Speaking ahead of Sunday’s game away to bitter rivals Marseille, Tuchel added: “We are still building, we are still in progress, still on our way up. I truly believe that, I can see a lot of good things in our game.”
– ‘Le Clasico’ –
In contrast to their difficulties in Europe, PSG are utterly dominant in France.
The reigning champions have established a new French record by winning their opening 10 Ligue 1 games this season and are hoping to extend that further when they go to the Velodrome.
Marseille come into the game on the back of a 3-1 defeat against Lazio in the Europa League, hardly ideal preparation for the biggest match in French football.
“For me it’s not so important what Marseille played so far because tomorrow will be different for them,” said Tuchel.
“We have a lot of respect for the quality they have. They are used to playing big matches. They have a lot of individual quality and with their supporters in that kind of stadium, anything can happen.”
There will be a crowd of over 60,000 at the Velodrome for the fixture, usually dubbed ‘Le Clasico’ in French in a nod to the Spanish game between Real Madrid and Barcelona, which will also be played on Sunday.
“Games like this are like an overload of emotions. We need to be very calm and focus on our qualities and objectives,” added Tuchel, who will be without injured captain Thiago Silva.
“We have a long, long series of victories and a big, big chance to make it 11, and to make it 11 in Marseille is one of the biggest challenges you can have in France.”
Thomas Tuchel has been appointed as the new coach of Paris Saint-Germain on a two-year deal, the French champions confirmed on Monday.
The 44-year-old German has agreed to succeed Unai Emery, who will leave the Qatar-owned side after the final game of the French season this weekend.
“It is with much joy, pride and ambition that I am joining this big club,” said Tuchel in a statement released by PSG.
“I can’t wait to start working with all these great players who are all amongst the best in the world.
“Paris Saint-Germain has enormous potential and it is by far the most exciting proposition in football.”
According to French sports daily L’Equipe, Tuchel was recommended directly to Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani by the Qatari consul in Germany.
At one point linked to Arsenal before Arsene Wenger announced he would be leaving the Premier League club, Tuchel will begin his new role in early July with the start of pre-season training.
It was an open secret that Tuchel had been lined up as the next coach of the ambitious club from the French capital.
They had been on the look-out for a replacement for Emery since being beaten 5-2 on aggregate by Real Madrid in the last 16 of the Champions League in March.
That disappointment in Europe, following a humiliating loss against Barcelona at the same stage a year ago, meant there was no chance of Emery’s two-year contract being renewed at the end of this campaign.
Emery has nevertheless just overseen a clean sweep of the domestic honours in France this season, after winning the French Cup, League Cup and season-opening Champions Trophy in his first campaign.
Tuchel was a free agent after leaving Borussia Dortmund a year ago, despite leading the team to victory in last season’s German Cup.
“Thomas is one of the best and most competitive European coaches to have emerged over the last few seasons,” declared PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi.
“He abides by very strong principles of playing spectacular and clinical football that has always been the foundation of German football, especially on the international scene.
“His competitive spirit, his preference for attacking football and his strong character are in line with what we have always wanted for Paris Saint-Germain.”
Unproven in Europe
Tuchel becomes the fifth different man to coach PSG since Qatar Sports Investments bought the club in 2011, following Antoine Kombouare, Carlo Ancelotti, Laurent Blanc and Emery.
He will be tasked with ensuring that they continue to dominate at home while finally making a major impression in the Champions League, having failed to go beyond the quarter-finals in the Qatar era.
Tuchel will also have to find a way of keeping Neymar happy, providing the world’s most expensive player remains in France for a second season.
However, Tuchel — a modest player whose career was cut short by a knee injury — is not yet proven as a coach at the highest level.
He did an admirable job in charge of Mainz, before succeeding Jurgen Klopp at Dortmund in 2015.
His first season saw Dortmund finish runners-up to Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga and the German Cup, while losing to Klopp’s Liverpool in the Europa League quarter-finals.
Last season, Tuchel’s side slipped to third in the Bundesliga and lost to Monaco in the Champions League quarter-finals, but they did beat Eintracht Frankfurt in the Cup final.
A falling-out with the Dortmund hierarchy cost him as job, and he had been out of work since then.
PSG wrapped up this season’s Ligue 1 title with five games to spare. Emery, who on Sunday was named as France’s coach of the year, will lead the side for the last time against Caen this weekend.
Former Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel has reportedly dropped out of the running as a possible head coach of Bayern Munich next season, according to reports on Sunday.
Both German daily newspapers Bild and Munich-based Sueddeutsche Zeitung claim Tuchel, 44, has told Bayern he is no longer interested in succeeding Jupp Heynckes.
The Sueddeutsche Zeitung say senior Bayern figures Uli Hoeness, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and sports director Hasan Salihamidzic held a telephone conference with Tuchel on Friday but failed to persuade him.
Tuchel’s agent, Olaf Meinking, was not available for comment on Sunday.
Borussia Dortmund fired Tuchel at the end of last season, despite winning the German Cup, following a falling out with the club.
According to German magazine Kicker, he is in talks with Arsenal about replacing Arsene Wenger, while Paris Saint-Germain are reportedly also interested.
It is unclear who will coach Bayern next season as Heynckes has not made his future plans clear, despite Bayern’s best attempts to persuade him to sign a contract extension.
With Tuchel no longer an option, RB Leipzig coach Ralph Hasenhuettl and Eintracht Frankfurt coach Nico Kovac have both been linked to the job, but both are under contract.
The same applies to German-speaking Swiss coach Lucien Favre, now at Nice in the French league, who is another candidate, according to the German media.
Bayern are currently 17 points clear in the Bundesliga and are on the verge of winning a sixth straight German league title.
Thomas Tuchel is the favourite to succeed Carlo Ancelotti as coach of Bayern Munich amidst media reports on Saturday that contract negotiations are taking place.
According to German daily Bild, the 44-year-old Tuchel is in Munich and negotiating to take over at the Bavarian giants having been sacked by current Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund in May.
Tuchel and Dortmund parted ways despite him steering the club to the German Cup title last season, the coach having enjoyed a turbulent relationship with Borussia’s CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke.
Bayern’s director of sport Hasan Salihamidzic said on Friday that Munich had “no names, no profiles” of who will replace Ancelotti, fired on Thursday in the wake Bayern’s 3-0 drubbing at Paris Saint-Germain.
“We will now collect our information and then make a decision,” said Salihamidzic.
The 58-year-old Ancelotti spent 15 months in charge of Bayern and won the Bundesliga title last season.
However, he was sacked after the poor performance at PSG when stars Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery and Mats Hummels were benched.
Ex-Bayern defender Willy Sagnol has been appointed interim coach for Sunday’s German league match at Hertha Berlin.
Should Bayern appoint Tuchel in the coming days, his first match will be against struggling Freiburg on October 14, after the international break.
Borussia Dortmund Manager, Thomas Tuchel, has left the club after two years in charge, the Bundesliga club said.
The 43-year-old took over following Jurgen Klopp’s departure in 2015.
Dortmund beat Eintracht Frankfurt to win the German Cup on Saturday and finished third in the Bundesliga to qualify for the Champions League.
Relations between Tuchel and Chief Executive, Hans-Joachim Watzke, have been strained since Dortmund’s team bus was damaged by an explosion on April 11.
In a statement, Dortmund said Tuchel’s departure was “in no way” related to a “disagreement between two people.”
The announcement came after talks between Tuchel and Watzke on Tuesday.
Tuchel claims neither he nor his players were consulted about whether they should play the Champions League quarter-final home tie against Monaco less than 24 hours after three explosions in the area of the team bus.
Watzke denied that was the case and said the claim had annoyed him.
On an official Twitter account created on Tuesday, Tuchel said: “I am grateful for two exciting, beautiful and eventful years. It’s a pity to not go on.
“Thank you to the fans, the team, the staff and to all who have supported us.”