Tuchel: 'I'm not afraid to lose Neymar'
- Tuchel isn't scared of making one of his biggest stars angry by benching him.
- The PSG boss explains that starting Ney from the bench always was his plan and he and the Brazilian agreed on it.
- The same happened with Mbappe against Galatasaray, Tuchel points out.
- Neymar has just returned from the injury and should be reintroduced gradually, the coach concludes.
- Barca continue to be linked with the forward.
Neymar started the game against Real Madrid in Champions League from the bench and only entered the pitch in the second half when his side trailing. Paris Saint-Germain coach Tuchel, however, isn't afraid of making one of his biggest stars angry by benching him.
"No, I'm not afraid [of the ramifications], I don't think we are going to lose Neymar," the PSG boss said after the clash (h/t Goal).
"We have a connection, we are honest. I talked to him and told him that I would rather he play in the second half and start on the bench. We did the same thing with Kylian away to Galatasaray.
"He's been absent for six weeks, he only played one game before this one and, for me, it was not worth taking that risk. Every month he missed a few days. I made the decision for him, for his health."
If anything, Tuchel was happy with Neymar's performance.
"There are some positive things to remember," he added. "The mentality at the end, the quality of the guys who came on, Ney and Pablo and Draxler made the difference. We have 13 points from five games."
The Brazilian is simply brilliant when he is fit:
According to previous reports (Paris United), the Parisians won't offer the Brazilian a new contract after the soap opera from last summer.
Meanwhile, according to Barca sporting director Eric Abidal, the 'door is still open' for Neymar to return to Camp Nou next summer. It looks like both parties, Barca and Ney, want the move to happen.
So far this season, Neymar has made only seven appearances while scoring four goals. The Brazil international is once again struggling with injuries.